The Historical European Martial Arts Coalition (HEMAC) is a collection of martial artists and researchers in Europe.  We are dedicated to the study, reconstruction, practice and promotion of traditional European fighting arts, based on the study of surviving technical sources (treatises and manuals).

The available sources for these arts date from around 1300AD onwards (we may yet discover earlier ones), covering both armed and unarmed combat.  They cover the techniques of dueling, self-defence and combat skills for war, with a wide variety of weapons, in armour or civilian clothes. 

With the gathering pace of the revival of European martial arts, researchers have uncovered many previously un-documented historical sources - sometimes lost or overlooked in national archives for centuries.  HEMAC members have discovered many of these, and are now engaged in unlocking their secrets.

The practice of European martial arts have grown rapidly in the last decade, with many new groups establishing themselves, more and bigger events, more competitions and an increasing number of students.  HEMA has featured on national TV networks, in national newspapers and in academic publications.

HEMAC was established in 2001 and is a non-hierarchical, round-table organisation, consisting of individual researchers and martial artists from many groups across Europe. It exists primarily to:

  • To encourage close working relationships between the various members and create a sense of HEMA community in Europe,

  • To help each other and share information,

  • To act as a banner under which to promote HEMA in Europe and beyond,

  • To organise at least one annual HEMAC event (in Dijon, France).

HEMAC does not seek to impose rules or regulations on any member or member group. It exists primarily to facilitate the 4 goals above, in a friendly and relaxed environment.

The main method of communication is through a private members' e-mail list and our private forum.  Members are admitted into HEMAC by consensus after being proposed by an existing member.  If you are interested in joining HEMAC, then contact one of the members.