Bartitsu Seminars in NYC


Want to learn to fight like Sherlock Holmes? Then you need to learn bartitsu, the gentlemanly art of self-defense. Arguably the world’s first mixed martial-art, Bartitsu was created by William Barton-Wright at the turn of the century as a way for gentleman to defend themselves on the rough and tumble streets of London. Barton taught his students not only how to use their hands and feet to fend off an attacker, but how to us their umbrellas, walking sticks, hats, and jackets in their defense as well. The art was then lost in time but is now experiencing a revival in interest. Tony Wolf has written several volumes on the subject and recently came out with a DVD: Bartisu: The Lost Martial Art of Sherlock Holmes.

This summer, Mark Donnelly, expert in historical combat, is teaching some seminars for those who want hands-on training in bartitsu.

July 23-24, 2011: Bartitsu Seminars with Mark Donnelly.

{ 17 comments… read them below or add one }

Ian Connel May 24, 2011 at 3:57 pm

Shameless plug: If you’re in Twin Cities and don’t want to travel to New York, check out Warrior’s Cove instead. They even have Eskrima.

Also, Sherlock may have used a shin-underhook variant to launch Moriarty to his doom. I had just read that story when I began training at Warrior’s Cove, and I read in the footnotes that Bartitsu is partially Japanese Jiu Jitsu.

Tony Wolf May 24, 2011 at 5:06 pm

Thanks for the plug!

Just noting that it’s considerably less expensive to buy copies of the Bartitsu Compendium direct from the publishers ( ). All proceeds from the sales of the Compendia are dedicated to commemorating Bartitsu founder E.W. Barton-Wright and to furthering the modern study of Bartitsu.

Rachel May 24, 2011 at 5:52 pm

Thanks much for promoting the NYC seminars and for spreading the word about Bartitsu in general! We are expecting a great time in NYC and everyone is welcome to attend, whether you are a seasoned martial artist or a complete beginner. We are also having a social event on Saturday evening after the training, so be sure to check the Web site link for details on that as well as the Sat-Sun seminars. I have posted some information about inexpensive hotels on the FAQs page. Also please visit The Bartitsu Society at for background information on Barititsu.

kent May 25, 2011 at 1:37 am

I really wish that there was one of these happening here in Florida. I’d love to go!

Greg K., PA May 28, 2011 at 7:25 pm

Does anyone know if he’s still living in the Harrisburg, PA area? I’d love to go to a seminar, but New York City, while not unreasonable, is still a bit of a trek from Central PA.

Jack June 1, 2011 at 9:42 pm

Is there anything like this on the West Coast? Preferably in CA? The SF Bay Area specifically?

Israel Thompson June 3, 2011 at 3:04 pm

I had the priviledge to see Mark do a few demonstrations at the recent Steampunk World’s Fair a couple of weeks ago in NJ. I would highly encourage those interseted to attend. If I wasn’t already commited to something, I would be there.

Rachel July 25, 2011 at 10:30 pm

The NYC seminars were a splendid success and I hope to repeat the event next year. Apologies for the delayed response but yes, Greg, he’s still in Harrisburg and teaches there. I know he is also teaching in Baltimore in November at the Darkover convention. As far as West Coast, Jack, I don’t know, check the list of schools and study groups on this page.

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