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Nedo Nadi

Biographical information

Medals OG
Gold 6
Silver 0
Bronze 0
Total 6
TypeCompeted in Olympic Games
SexMale
Full nameNedo•Nadi
Used nameNedo•Nadi
Born9 June 1894 in Livorno, Livorno (ITA)
Died29 January 1940 in Portofino, Genova (ITA)
Measurements188 cm
AffiliationsC. S. Fides, Livorno (ITA)
NOC(s) Italy

Biography

The Italian Nedo Nadi was the most versatile fencer in history, uniquely winning an Olympic title with each of the three weapons at the same Games. Livorno-born Nadi had fencing in his blood. His father Beppe was a well-known fencer in Italy, with his own fencing school. Together with his older brother Nedo Aldo learned to fight the foil and sabre, but not the épée. His father considered épée to be an “undisciplined weapon” and forbade his pupils to use it, although the brothers did so in secrecy and eventually won a gold medal in the team épée in Antwerp. At the 1912 Olympics, he surprisingly won the individual foil title - partially because of a French boycott due to a regulations disagreement.

In 1920, he produced one of the greatest of all Olympic performances. He won the individual foil and sabre titles and led the Italians to victory in all three team events, for a record five fencing medals at the same Games. His brother, Aldo, also won a gold medal in each of the three team events. The Nadi brothers were again somewhat aided by the absence of a major fencing nation, as Hungary was barred from entering the 1920 Olympics. Nadi was also lucky in the foil event. He won ten of his eleven final bouts, but lost to Roger Ducret of France. With Ducret only having to beat the last-placed fencer in the pool, he was expected to win the gold, and Nadi withdrew crying. In his euphoria, Ducret failed to concentrate for his last match and was beaten by Pietro Speciale of Italy, leaving first place for Nadi. Nadi also won a gold medal in individual foil at the 1919 Inter-Allied Games.

After the Antwerp Games, Nedo Nadi taught as a professional in South America but on his return he was reinstated as an amateur and served as President of the Italian Fencing Federation. Nadi fought in World War I and was decorated by the Italian government for bravery.

Results

Games Discipline (Sport) Event Status Team Pos Details
1912 Summer Olympics Fencing Foil, Individual, Men Olympic 1 Gold Representing Italy    
  Sabre, Individual, Men Olympic 5
  Sabre, Team, Men Olympic Italy =5
1920 Summer Olympics Fencing Foil, Individual, Men Olympic 1 Gold Representing Italy    
  Foil, Team, Men Olympic Italy 1 Gold
  Épée, Team, Men Olympic Italy 1 Gold
  Sabre, Individual, Men Olympic 1 Gold
  Sabre, Team, Men Olympic Italy 1 Gold

Other participations

Games Role Details
1920 Summer Olympics Flagbearer at the Opening Ceremony Representing Italy    

Olympic family relations

Special Notes