The gentleman’s honour

Hello there,

As we all know, the gentleman is an honourable being.  Be it keeping his word, giving up his seat for a lady or letting the women and children off the sinking steam-liner first, the gentleman will always do the honourable thing.

However what happens when someone brings dishonour to a gentleman by besmirching his good name or trying to steal his wife?  Well, of course we have ourselves a good old fashioned duel on our hands.

Two knights fight over the spelling of the word honourable/honorable (the one that lost was an American.)

There are many forms with which one (or in this case two) can have a duel but first and foremost how does one initiate a duel?  Simple.  You take off your gauntlet and throw it on the ground.  Of course if you’re not in a full suit of armour a glove will suffice and one should slap their chosen opponent across the face with it.

Two men prepare to fight. Notice the x-ray goggles they wear to see their opponents vital organs.

Once the challenge has been accepted, the form in which it shall be undertaken is agreed upon.  Originally the duel was on horseback and involved knights but soon evolved to sabers and feathery hats whereby the participants either fought to the death, to first blood (not Rambo) or the less honourable way of a forfeit whereby the loser is banished from town and his residence given to gypsies.

An alternative to this was ‘pistols at ten paces’.  Each challenger would take a pistol and march ten paces away from one another, turn and fire.  This could go on for three rounds or until someone was injured or killed.  Any more than three rounds is barbaric and both offenders would have their residence given to gypsies.

Two men about to duel on whether or not beige is an adequate winter colour for a gentleman.

Going on this method is the less conventional dueling from hot air balloons using blunderbusses.  Traditionally this method is only employed when between a Frenchman and the German.

Only the French and Germans could come up with something like this.

This system of dueling also evolved into the balloon race.  Whereby the two challengers would have to circumnavigate the globe.  This traditionally is accompanied with many hijinks and hilarity.

One condition was that they had to get a souvenir from every country they landed in. Usually a doll filled with diamonds.

There are also duels where each member gets to choose their own weapon from an array and fight until the death.  This is typically employed on planet Vulcan where Kirk had to fight Spock, or in Futurama where Fry had to fight Zoidberg.  In these instances a traditional combat song is played to get people in the spirit of the duel.

Can Kirk survive Pon farr? Yes.

So there you have it.  If someone brings dishonour to your good name, don’t cry about it, challenge them to a duel.

G.O. Brixley

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