Joseph Gora began classical French fencing at the age of thirteen before making the transition to historical swordsmanship in 2004 when Stoccata opened a branch in Hobart, Tasmania. 

He was involved in the Medieval Society of Tasmania for many years in the 1990s and began collecting historical fencing manuals at this time. Joseph taught classical French foil both privately and at the University of Tasmania Fencing Club but became disillusioned with the move away from the classical approach and the reinterpretation of ‘right of way’ in the modern sport.

He was delighted to make the switch to Stoccata despite (or perhaps because of) the challenge of learning a new system. (There was also an unexpected discovery at Stoccata in the form of meeting the woman who would soon become his wife!)

Joseph’s interest in swordsmanship spans the medieval period right through to the present day, but his practical experience has focussed on George Silver’s short sword. He is passionate about teaching his students how different masters fit into the broader traditions of swordsmanship. Some of his favourite texts are: Pallas Armata (1639), Andrew Lonnergan’s Fencer’s Guide (1771), and Joachim Meyer’s Art of Combat (1570). Joseph hopes to develop his research and teaching of these texts.