The Duel In European History: Honour And The Reign Of Aristocracy by Victor KiernanThe Duel In European History: Honour And The Reign Of Aristocracy by Victor Kiernan

The Duel In European History: Honour And The Reign Of Aristocracy

byVictor KiernanIntroduction byDavid Blackbourn

Paperback | August 15, 2016

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For centuries, the duel played an integral role in the preservation of the aristocratic order in Europe, despite countless attempts by both church and state to ban the practice. The drama of the duel has been romanticized in countless works of literature, and it has been an enduring fixture in films and theater reflecting the period. But how did the duel come to prominence in the first place as the form by which men staked their honor? And how did it develop its allure as a cultural and artistic device? Renowned historian Victor Kiernan explores these questions and more in The Duel in European History.
With wit and insight, Kiernan provides an entertaining history of the evolution of the ritual of the duel, beginning with its medieval origins—when it was regarded as a badge of rank—and following the practice up to the early twentieth century, by which time it had come to be seen as an irrational anachronism. Kiernan argues persuasively that the idea of the duel was unique to Europe and its colonies, and, in its contribution to the development of the officers corps, played a key part in shaping European military power. In doing so, he sheds new light on the ascendency of aristocratic classes and the role that their values played in European history.
This edition adds new depth to Kiernan’s fascinating historical account, with an original introduction from esteemed historian David Blackbourn, further exploring how and why the duel continues to ignite curiosity and the imagination.
Victor Kiernan (1913–2009) was one of Britain’s most distinguished historians and the author of The Lords of Human Kind, European Empires from Conquest to Collapse, and Shakespeare: Poet and Citizen, among many other books.    
Title:The Duel In European History: Honour And The Reign Of AristocracyFormat:PaperbackDimensions:300 pages, 8.5 × 5.5 × 0.9 inPublished:August 15, 2016Publisher:Zed BooksLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:1783608382

ISBN - 13:9781783608386

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Table of Contents

Introduction by David Blackbourn
1. The Problem of the Duel
2. Ancient and Primitive Analogies
3. Europe of the Knights
4. Emergence of the Modern Duel
5. The Spread of the Duel
6. The Duel at its Apogee
7. Grudges and Grievances
8. Procedure and Etiquette
9. The Psychology of Honour
10. Honour and Enlightenment
11. Decline and Rebirth
12. Britain: The Final Decades
13. Walter Scott and Honour
14. Later British Writers
15. Western Europe: The Hundred Last Years
16. Under the Old Monarchies
17. Europe Overseas
18. Epilogue and Retrospect
Works Cited

Editorial Reviews

“Tthe whole book is entertaining, and during the course of its excursions from Southern Italy to the western shores of Ireland, or the eastern fringes of Russia, there is much wry humor on display reflected in a wealth of memorable anecdotes. Who could not be delighted to learn that a duel over an Irish horse race was prevented when one party thoughtfully turned up with a coffin already inscribed with the name of his putative opponent, or that the Fourth Duke of Richmond survived a notorious duel and then the battle of Waterloo only to die from a bite from a fox!”