He was graduated from the University at Milan with a PhD in Medieval and Renaissance studies. He is skilled in curation, historical weaponry, preservation, restoration, and metallurgy. He was a noted collegiate fencer.
He was recruited into the Watchers by Athena Westmore, and graduated 9th out of a class of 93 in 1988. From 1988 to 1991 he took part in a special research project on blades before being promoted.