Tire machèt

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Tire machet - Cap Rouge, Haiti Tire Machet.jpg
Tire machèt – Cap Rouge, Haiti

Tire machèt ("pull [the] machete") is a Haitian martial art; a form of fencing with machetes.

The origin of the practice lies in the Haitian Revolution of 1791-1804, in which rebel slaves, many armed only with the machetes they had used to cut sugarcane, defeated the French colonial army. Tire machèt combines traditional African combat systems with elements of historical European fencing. [1] It is traditionally practiced in secret. [2] These secret societies inflicted punishments on fallen insiders and external enemies. [3]

Among blacks in many places in the Americas, including Haiti, stick-fighting was used as a training tool in learning how to fight with machetes. [4]

Haitian master fencer Alfred Avril (d. 2014) was among the first to open up his practice to the world, through a 10-year collaboration with Reginald Turnier and Michael Dylan Rogers of the Haitian Machete Fencing Project. [5] [6] [7] A 2014 documentary short film by Jonathan David Kane, Papa Machete, depicted Alfred Avril training his sons and other students. [7]


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  1. Poon, Linda. "'En Garde' Takes On New Urgency In A Duel With Machetes". NPR. Retrieved 17 November 2017.
  2. Buder, Emily (6 November 2017). "The Master of a Secret Machete Martial Art". The Atlantic. Retrieved 17 November 2017.
  3. Desch-Obi 2008, pp. 284.
  4. Desch-Obi 2008, pp. 285.
  5. Castillo, Arielle (19 May 2014). "'Papa Machete' Film Preserves the Art of Haitian Machete Fencing". Fusion. Retrieved 2018-01-08.
  6. McFadden, David (9 July 2014). "Grace, danger blend in Haiti's machete fighting" . Retrieved 2018-01-08.
  7. 1 2 Morgenstern, Hans (17 December 2014). ""You are completely winded, and then you take a swig of rum:" Jonathan David Kane On Papa Machete". Miami New Times. Retrieved 17 November 2017.