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(1898) A chapter from a Treatise on the French method of the noble art of self defence- George d’Armoric

(1898) A chapter from a Treatise on the French method of the noble art of self defence- George d’Armoric

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Published by Samurai_Chef
savate, chausson, jeu marseillais, boxe française, french boxing, french kickboxing or french footfighting
savate, chausson, jeu marseillais, boxe française, french boxing, french kickboxing or french footfighting

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Published by: Samurai_Chef on Apr 05, 2012
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05/13/2014

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Treatise on the French Method of the Noble Art of Self-DefencePart1
A chapter from a Treatise on the French method of the noble art of self defence, By Georged’Armoric 1898.This portion of the French method is, I believe, the centre of the attraction to the readers and tothe witnesses of displays. It is the auxiliary to theFrench art that seems to throw some darkness,or at least, rather heavy shadows, over the high light of the picture. It is that position whichcauses objections and angry feelingsthe outcome of unreasoned prejudice. And thus thisunlucky intruder is ill-received by some, and summarily dismissed by other on the door stepswhen soliciting an introduction, and this for no other crime than being unknown ormisunderstood!We will try to soften this austerity, this rigid countenance, with our protégé attired in his best“togs” and made quite presentable try to ascend those lofty regions where all that is comme-il-faut dwellsand there crave forthe favour of a hearing for his over abused little stranger.His name is Chausson, the truest, most reliable, and mot sincere kinsman of dame La Boxebutyou, perhaps, have only heard of him before by his sobriquet of la Savateanother injustice. If 
 
related to what as you may suppose is low born parent, he may, in good truth prove the hereaches much higher, and, that as a matter of fact this rather ancient relation of his was of unimpeachable birth, and not, as you have hitherto imagines, a frequenterof the gutter.Savate to day means an old, cast of shoe, ‘tis true, but its meaning was very different in the daysor yore, and to answer thenumerous enquiries I have received concerning the unfortunateSavate, its real name, real meaning and etymology, I will, with your permission, make a shortdigression from our real subject. At one time, and, as far as I am aware, even today, theshoemakers of France were or may still be divided into distinct classes.TheBottier is that specialist in high top boots generally known as Wellington’s, and is prettyhigh in the scale. The Cordonnier holds a middle level of respectabilitybut again has his
 
subdivision of rank, as it comprises the makers of boots and shoes of the general character formen and woman. But the Savatier is, or was the first and foremost in this social strata of leatheren fraternitythe premier of his craft, the real artist. It was he that made, and may still bemaking, the dainty feet of the tairlook so bewitching; he is the specialist pour chaussures tinepour dames!Thus these lovely concoctions of costly materials, something richly embroidered, these sweetand delicate slippersall these were, in trade parlance, called “Savates,” and the artists aSavatier. It is probable that envy and jealousy may like the French Boxers reach pretty high, forthey reached the Savatier and fought him with the most deadly of all weaponsderision andridicule.It was too much for him, and he seems to have succumbed; and today the lowest in the rankshave assumed his name, and the cobbler henceforth is known as a Savatier, and the worn out,shapeless, castoff shoe, as une savateprofanation of an art!And now let us return to our moutons. I am not prepared to assert that the Savateur or tireurs deSavate of old, and originators of the art, wore “Savate” as then understood, I will even go as faras to admit of certain doubts, but I am quite certain that they were not “shod” with thedisreputable article as understood today. In all probability they wore light, soft shoes, and onlycalled Savate by courtesy, a commodity at no time everlasting, so that as time went on thecovering of their feet resumed its proper and real name of Chausson.

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