Page:Journey Round my Room by Xiavier de Maistre trans. Henry Attwell.djvu/27

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Laws and Customs.


you try to give the fourth cut while your adversary parries tierce ; and, that vengeance may be fully satisfied, you present your naked breast to him, thus running the risk of being killed by your enemy, in order to be avenged.

It is evident that such a custom is most reasonable. And yet, we sometimes meet with people who disapprove of so praiseworthy a course. But what is about of a piece with the rest of the business is, that the very persons who condemn the course we have described, and who would have it regarded as a grave error, would judge still more harshly any one who refused to commit it. More than one unlucky wight has, by endeavoring to conform to their opinion, lost his reputation and his livelihood. So that, when people are so unfortunate as to have an affair of honor to settle, it would not be a bad plan to cast lots to see whether it shall be arranged accord-