All young men of the nobility and gentry in Georgian England needed fencing skills. Most went to Paris until Dominico Angelo Tremamondo arrived in London in 1755. A native of Livorno, Italy, Angelo was proficient in riding and fencing. After several victories in public fencing demonstrations, Angelo acquired several patrons, including the Prince of Wales (George III) and the Dukes of Gloucester, Cumberland, and York. He wrote a well-received illustrated treatise on fencing which was dedicated to the Prince of Wales.
Angelo opened his academy in Soho. He and his descendants taught fencing and deportment to generations of young British men. (See “I shall conquer this” Watercolor of Henry Angelo’s Fencing Academy, by Rowlandson, 1787) Later located next door to Jackson’s, it became a fashionable gathering place for the British aristocracy where they could practice fencing and attend expert demonstrations. Angelo’s son Henry trained in Paris, returned home and eventually took over his father’s business. Henry Charles Angelo the Younger (1780-1852), grandson of the original Angelo, held the position of fencing master and superintendent of sword exercises in the army. He moved the Academy to St. James’s Street (1830-1896).
Tomorrow, His Desire is OUT Rita Bay