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blunted sword developed in the 19th century for use in fencing practice and competition. The epee was patterned after the epee du combat, the standard dueling sword of its day. Sporting competitions were designed to simulate what would happen in a real sword fight, with no regard for the usual fencing conventions such as limited target areas on an opponent's body or a fencer having the right-of-way when attacking. Touches could be scored on any part of the body. In early contests, fencers tried for a single touch. In 1932 the number of touches required to win was increased to three, and, in 1955, to five