chapter  7
17 Pages

The duel of honour and the origins of the rules for arms, warfare and arbitration in the Hague conferences

WithRobert A. Nye

By the 1820s an embourgeoisment of the duel had begun, and modern codes appeared to instruct new men in the rules of affairs of honour. Honour codes and the protocols that regulated duels played an important role in the development of modern civility, the evolution of professional ethics in all-male professions and in the Hague Peace Conferences of 1899 and 1907. The Hague conference established three commissions to report on arms limitations, the rules of war and arbitration. By the end of the nineteenth century, the rituals and practices of the point of honour, and the formal arbitration of differences between men according to its rules, were firmly established in the private and public law codes of many European states. The importance of 'private' duelling jurisprudence was heightened in France, Italy and Germany by the relative weakness of libel laws.