Tales Of The Gun: Dueling Pistols, The Etiquette of the Death (1998)

History Channel

Dueling pistols .58 caliber smooth bore with 9 5/8 inch octagonal barrels that are slightly swamped; overall length is 14 3/4 inches. The plain walnut stocks are within the shop tradition of Wogdon, known for making duelers with deadly utilitarian aesthetic. There are London proof marks and initials "RW" on underside of barrels; gold touch holes. Flag and arms engraved on trigger guard bow; finial of pineapple outlined but not engraved. The ramrods, which appear to be original, have flared horn tips. The maker's signature "WOGDON & BARTON" in running script in three lines on lockplate.
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Date Added: 11 years ago.

Documentary Description

See some of the most beautiful weapons ever made and learn the formal rules that governed their use.

They are relics of a bygone age when the "civilized" citizens of the upper classes settled their scores with duels. Certainly, guns are still deployed to right all kinds of perceived wrongs, but the social ritual surrounding their use has long since disappeared.

DUELING PISTOLS turns back the clock for a look at this bizarre ritual, from the weapons used to the duels that changed history. See the incredibly ornate dueling pistols that are the zenith of the gunsmith's art, and examine the individual weapons used in some of history's most famous duels. Explore the strange culture of the duel, which provided the contestants several chances to pull back from the conflict without losing face, yet which also allowed people to die over the smallest social mis-step.

DUELING PISTOLS takes aim at the weapons and ritual that settled the score on the tragic fields where men and women died because of their exaggerated sense of honor.


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