Administrate of Dueling Organization in Harmony | World Anvil

Administrate of Dueling

The Administrate of Dueling is a department under the Council of Marûagir, and is, as the name implies, responsible for overseeing matters of dueling. Given the importance of duels in the city's culture, it is considered the most crucial branch of government by commoners and noblemen alike.

Their main day-to-day responsibilities are adjudication of duels as they happen, the legality of duel challenges, considering legal aftermaths of a duel, and resolving matters of honor during or after a duel. More long-term duties are consolidating official laws and guidelines for dueling, approving styles of dueling for official tournaments, and supervising the city's martial arts colleges.


One of the first branches of official government that came to be in the settlement that would later evolve into the city-state of Marûagir, the administrate was created by leaders of the immigrating humans and the native dragonborn to quell the growing tensions between the two groups. By letting angered parties have a more constructive output than simply beating each other to death, the administrate provided rules and standards that would let people come together to fight in a safer matter. Safer in the sense that there would less people involved, and safer in the way that not every fight needed to end in a death before a victor was declared.

Principles of Duels

As determined by the Administrate of Dueling.


Any citizen can in theory challenge another to a duel for whatever reason they see fit. The opposing party may accept or not. A simple back-alley brawl rarely requires the involvement of the administrate, but more serious matters, such as those regarding to property or honor, will require a written permit by the organization. These permits are mostly standardized forms that need very little input by the duelists, other than a signature. If requested, the administrate will provide a judge to determine the outcome of the duel. Some duels are required by law to have an official judge, namely those taking place in official tournament or duels to the death.

The dueling parties of an official duel are required to pick a dueling style before the fight. Changing style during a duel without the approval of the judge or the opponent may be considered unlawful and dishonorable, and could lead to a forfeit.

Official guidelines regarding honor

There are a lot of predetermined conventions when it comes to the honor in dueling. Leaving an opponent alive, even though it was agreed upon to fight to the death is very honorable. Admitting defeat during a duel when you are clearly outmatched is honorable. Challenging someone to a duel where you are clearly stronger, or challenging without justification is considered dishonorable. Not adhering to the agreed upon terms of a duel is not only dishonorable, but unlawful, and may in extreme cases lead to a death sentence.

Types of duel

What "type" a duel is is determined by the winning condition. Officially there are three types of duels, though there are many unofficial variants found in theatrical and civil duels. An exception to these is jousting, which does not fall under the three types of duels, but is still regulated by the administrate.

Winning condition: removing your opponent's weapon. Incapacitating your opponent in any other way could also lead to a win, but may be considered dishonorable, as determined by a judge. Either combatant may declare themselves beaten at any point.
First Blood
Winning condition: drawing first blood from your opponent. Knocking out your opponent may also lead to a win if the condition is predetermined by the dueling parties. By far the most common type of duel. Either combatant may declare themselves beaten at any point.
Winning condition: killing your opponent. This type of duel is required to have a judge, not only during the fight, but also before and after to determine the legality and justification of death. Neither combatant can declare themselves beaten, but a superior party may spare an incapacitated opponent.

Approved Schools of Dueling Arts

The "Approved Schools of Dueling Arts" is an official document made by the Administrate of Dueling to determine what martial arts or fighting styles are legal in a duel. Currently there are six approved fighting styles.

A blade in one hand, the other hand behind your back. The most common fighting style of all, and usually where every duelist starts before moving on to a different, more advanced style.
A sword in one hand, a dagger in the other. A style constructed around parrying and feinting. Usually the next step from the ridosso-style.
One dagger in both hands. A style all about being quicker than your opponent, dealing smaller blows with greater frequency. Extremely difficult to master, the gap between the best and the mediocre is huge.

A blade in one hand, a cloak in the other. Primarily used for theatrics, though a select few have had great success in feinting, distracting, and grappling their opponent with the cloak. Likely the least popular style for the fighters, and the most popular among the audience.
Bare fist boxing. Not often used in official duels, but likely the most common fighting style used in minor disputes among the common folk that does not require a judge. Also a favorite with criminal organizations.
Mounted, lance in one hand, shield in the other. Only used for official tournaments where the duelists' goal is to break their lance on their opponent's shield or armor, and hopefully knocking them off their horse in the process.

Justice by the Blade

by Jacques Callot
Administrate-approved Fencing Colleges
Some people are naturals when it comes to wielding a sword, instantly picking up tricks and techniques from the mere mention of a blade. But for everyone else, joining a fencing college is the way. Some schools here provide scholarly education with some fencing on the side, but this is Marûagir, the city of duels! Most schools focus on swords first, education second.

Being part of a college is not all about learning, though. There is prestige, honor, and camaraderie to be found. Some official tournaments even require the duelists to be part of, or sponsored by a college.

Esteemed Colleges
Name Style Leader
Manosinistra Lady
Acinaces Lorenzo
Ridosso Curran
Capote Lord
Below: A duel to the death, in the ridosso-style. Both combatants have broken formal style and are attempting to grapple with their off-hand.
by Jacques Callot

Cover image: by Jacques Callot, edited


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