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275647 Posts in 27717 Topics by 4285 Members Latest Member: - Jason DAngelo Most online today: 91 - most online ever: 565 (October 17, 2020, 02:08:06 PM)
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Author Topic: Duels  (Read 1444 times)
Ashton
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Posts: 50


« on: May 30, 2003, 04:43:22 PM »

I apologize in advance if this has been brought up before but:

Duels- a formal agreement to do bodily harm between two parties. May be for judicial or social reasons. Not necessarily to the death as first blood contests are fairly well documented (I'm thinking Angelo's and McBane's treatises on smallsword). Sometimes involves seconds, but not always.

What I am thinking is that in the context of Weyrth, different countries and even social classes would have their own system for settling disputes through combat, be it the dispute over territory or property, or simply the fact that someone called you a motherless cur.

I can see certain countries/cultures in Weyrth not bothering with the duel, preferring the more informal mutual agreement to kill each other.

The major countries that I see having duels (and the weapons of choice for each) would be as follows:

1) Fauth- I'm picturing different salons competing directly against each other, trying to prove that their Maestro's system of fighting is better than a different Maestros. Probably not duels as such, but definitely meeting at midnight, a brief clash in the dark and someone runs away while someone bleeds out their last on the side of the street.

2) Otamarluk- I can see a fairly developed, socially acceptable dueling system developing, even in the context of the Seven Vows. Fights would be to the death and with daggers.

3) Oustenreich- Trial by Combat to the death is still common. Fights may occur in or out of armor, and traditionally on foot, though occassions have occurred where the challenged has opted to a fight on horseback. This system of Trial by Combat has even extended to the peasantry, but only amongst each other. Champions who hire themselves out to fight for others are not uncommon. (The loser who hired the champion is still put to death if incapicitated- not the champion).  (I'm thinking maybe borrowing from the scenarios depicted in Hans Tallhoffer's Fechtbuch)

4) Stahl- Trial by Combat used to be the norm, but with the moving away from the Three who are One, the idea that God is on the winner side is no longer as easily explained. A court system is being implemented with varying degrees of success.

5) Seat of the Xanarian Empire- duels for status are common and popular among the younger landless nobility set. These are often to first blood and the winner enjoys a temporary bonus to his reputation and status. Duels at dawn are popular, and chirugeons are seeing a rise in business, especially now that there are people willing to prove upon their body that the case of rapier technique is better than all others (No, I'm not saying it is as the person writing this)

6) Gelure- The rapier is starting to replace the cut and thrust sowrd as the weapon of choice for duels. Duels are only fought between equally ranking members of the military and then only during periods of leave. Duels are often to the death and well attended by the opposing members cadre.

7) Savaxen- (borrowing from Icelandic tradition here) Duels are only fought when all other recourse is sought, including separating the differing parties. If they still can't behave, they are both sent to an island with a sword and shield each. They are not allowed to return until one or the other is dead.

8) The rest- no set system of dueling is in place (exception of maybe Tengoku?) either because of a lack of development in that direction, or a strong legal system that precludes the need.

The reason why I got thinking along these lines originally was of the swordsman skill pack and the fact that I could envision rival swordsmen challenging each other. That and there is the concept of the duellist which fills a fairly specific niche not found in all cultures.

Thoughts?
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