2019-05-22

Torricelli

  This Italian fencing master - graduate of the prestigious Scuola Magistrale Militare di Roma - exerted great influence on Hungarian sabre fencing in the first decades of the last century. He was three years younger than Italo Santelli (1866-1945), and from the Southern Italy (Palermo). Torricelli arrived in Hungary in 1898, two years after Santelli won the millennial competition in 1896, and settled in Budapest. [1]

Angelo Torricelli in 1892

 Before 1898 he served as Company-Sergeant-Major, fencing instructor of the 3rd Regiment of Cavalry in Italy. Angelo Torricelli participated at the well publicised fencing exhibition at the Agricultural Hall (London) in 1892:
Italian Fencers at the Royal Military Tournament
Among the various performances at the Agricultural Hall has been the display of fencing with foil and sabre by representative instructors of the Italian army, under the direction of Cavaliere Masaniello Parise. Company-Sergeant-Major Agesilao Greco of the Field Artillery, is a master in the use of the foil, and his method illustrates the characteristics of the Italian style. With the sabre, Regimental-Sergeant-Major Vincenzo Drosi, Instructor of the 5th Regiment of Infantry, and Company-Sergeant-Major Angelo Torricelli, Instructor of the 3rd Regiment of Cavalry, gave a capital exhibition. 
Illustrated London News, Saturday, June 4, 1892
  In 1899 the Szeged Fencing Association invited Torricelli to teach in Szeged (now the third largest city of the country, is situated near the southern border of Hungary). The association's statute was approved on October 31, 1899, so he arrived somewhere in the last months of 1899. After having spent some time at Szeged he returned to Budapest.

  Fencing master Gerentsér wrote in 1941 that he was the student of famous Torricelli between 1897 and 1898 in his hometown, Szeged. So from this we can be sure that in 1897 Torricelli was already in this Hungarian city. Gerentsér sang the praises of Torricelli's teaching abilities and flatly stated that Torricelli was the best pedagogue he ever met. In his book - A modern kardvívás (Modern Sabre Fencing, published in 1944) - Gerentsér wrote very warmly about Torricelli:
Toricelli mester eszményi tanár volt. Mindama mesterek között, akikkel életem folyamán itthon és külföldön találkoztam, őt tartottam a legértékesebb pedagógusnak. Tőle tanultam a legtöbbet, kérlelhetetlen pontosságot a tanításban és a tanulásban egyaránt. De nemcsak a legtökéletesebb oktató és rendkívül rokonszenves egyén volt, hanem egyúttal az olasz vívás klasszikus hagyományainak féltékeny őrzője is. Az ő oktatása, tanítványaira gyakorolt lelki befolyása nagyban hozzájárult ahhoz, hogy később mint mester és szakíró, én is egész életemen keresztül megőriztem a klasszikus hagyományokhoz való szigorú ragaszkodást.
 Angelo Torricelli died in 1944 and was buried in Palić (part of Subotica, Serbia; Hungarian: Szabadka, Palics). [1]

Italian fencing masters who went to London
and participated at the fencing displays (1892) [2]
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  1. From an article, published in 1975 about László Gerentsér by László Klell, amateur researcher of the history of fencing. 
  2. The name of Italo Santelli is competely misspelled (Idalo Sanselli).
  3. Scuola Magistrale Militare di Roma = Central Military Fencing School of Rome

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