HISTORY OF FENCING
Fencing originated as the practice of swordsmanship to prepare men for duels and warfare. The Romans as well as Greeks educated their warriors in ludis or special schools on the art of using swords and fencing with light spears. Then, the fall of the Roman Empire gave way to the heavy broadswords of Germanic tribes, who were perhaps the earliest people to recognize combat with swords as a mean of settling questions of justice or grievances. It was not until the beginnings of the Renaissance Era in the 14th century that light, fast weapons such as the rapier came back into use for dueling. The publication of Treatise on Arms, by Diego de Valera of Spain in 1471, marked the birth of modern fencing. And as Spain became a leading power of Europe their armies carried fencing abroad and particularly into Italy, where the first great schools of fencing were established later on. Shortly afterwards, many countries began to ban dueling and thus saw the transformation of fencing into an organized sport.