Safe Duels

This is another fascinating piece from Atlas Obscura on the problem of duelling between gents. The practice was made safe by using wax bullets.

I find this fascinating as it reminds me that England was not always the laughing stock of the world, but led the way in many improvements. One of them was the outlawing of duels and the wearing of weapons at Bath Spa by Beau Nash in the early 18th century. He imposed lots of rules to promote good manners among the gamblers and drinkers of the spa. It seems that duelling was by then dying out anyway, as the English realised that it was not worth dying for honour, so accepted payment for their injured pride, which became formalised in the form of Criminal Conversation laws.

So, here’s what the non-British folk had to try to keep down the high levels of pointless killings. Male honour? Pah!

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