“Early Days at the Bartitsu Club”

This entry at Martial History Magazine includes several “new” (circa 1900) newspaper articles about the Bartitsu Club.

Significantly, the first article is an interview with William Henry Grenfell, the 1st Baron Desborough, who was apparently the President of the Club. We had previously known of Grenfell’s involvement as a promoter and member, but not that he held an official position.

Also of note; the Club at least planned to include classes for children, and to teach “the use of the dagger” in addition to fencing, boxing, wrestling, kicking, stick fighting and jiujitsu. Although Barton-Wright said that he had trained in the use of the stiletto “with recognised masters”, we have no further evidence to suggest that dagger-play was actually taught at the Club, except possibly in the context of defending against dagger attacks:

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