I was listening to a podcast of TED TALK concerning the most violent times in history. Many people like myself considered the 20th century would win hands down. Wrong…the history of civilization going back in time seems to be incredibly violent.Especially hand to hand combat.(Battle of Visby stands out)
What gripped me was Seth Paces description of hand to hand combat between Jacques le Gris and Jean de Carrouges.
“Described as a large and physically imposing character with a reputation for womanizing, Le Gris was a liege man (feudal retainer) of Peter II of Alencon and a favorite at his court, governing a large portion of his liege lord’s territory in addition to his own ancestral holdings. Le Gris’ insistence on defending his case by chivalry ‘Trial by Combat’ rather than opting for the safer church trial (to which as a cleric in minor orders he was entitled) attracted widespread support for his cause among the French nobility, and controversy continues to this day as to where the real guilt lies in the case.”(Wikipedia)
Seth Pace writes;
“While describing the exceptionally rare circumstance of a judicial duel, the accounts of the fight between Jacques le Gris and Jean de Carrouges are particularly telling of what symmetrical combat was like between two well-armored knights. The two knights tilted at each other, hitting one another three times and remaining stunned, but still on their horses. On the third strike, the lances shattered (one account says a large splinter lacerated one’s thigh, and he made the mistake of pulling it out), so the two regained their balance then started hacking away at each other with battle axes (“becs de corbin”). This wasn’t going anywhere until le Gris severed Carrouges’ horse’s spine with the axe, forcing the latter to dismount. Carrouges was being severely overpowered by the younger le gris, ultimately resorting to knocking le Gris off his horse by stabbing it in the gut. The two fought with swords on foot and eventually, the stronger fighter–le Gris–stabbed Carrouges through the thigh. At this point, le Gris backed up to gather energy to finish the job, but before doing so Carrouges jumped forward and knocked him to the ground. The two wrestled until le Gris was firmly pinned down, at which point Carrouges started furiously hacking at le Gris’s head with the sword. Le Gris wouldn’t give up and Carrouges couldn’t find any weak points for a clean stab, so he cut away at the armor lacing until he was able to pry open access to le Gris’s face. (Imagine opening a can of sardines with a hatchet.) Carrouges demanded a final confession for the crime (the rape of Carrouges’ wife) and le Gris refused, so Carrouges took his dagger and shoved it through the newly-widened gap in the visor, fatally stabbing le Gris in the face”. (Seth Pace)
“Great men are not always wise, Nor do the aged always understand justice”. Job 32:9
Can you imagine in these United sates if Judicial Duel(s) were the norm? Last man standing would be an understatement. As we all have had thought justice was not not served us in certain times in our lives, we do know that God through His Son Jesus is the righteousness we all seek
“Do not forsake your own friend or your father’s friend, Nor go to your’s house in the day of your calamity; Better is a neighbor nearby than a brother far away”. Proverbs 27:10
War surrounds us everyday…seek peace, do God’s justice. Help the widow and the sick, feed the hungry, help the poor.