Encyclopedia of Early Modern History Online

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(952 words)

1. Definition

The challenge was a ritualized (Ritual) form of private “declaration of war,” to test the readiness of competitors in everyday life (Everyday world) to defend their honor. In early modern Europe it was a basic form for the settling of interpersonal conflicts and social control. Documentation is found in the huge number of trial procedures before the lower territorial courts of law.

In local Weistum[7. 58–60], village orders and Police the challenge was subsumed either und…

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Behringer, Wolfgang, “Challenge”, in: Encyclopedia of Early Modern History Online, Editors of the English edition: Graeme Dunphy, Andrew Gow. Original German Edition: Enzyklopädie der Neuzeit. Im Auftrag des Kulturwissenschaftlichen Instituts (Essen) und in Verbindung mit den Fachherausgebern herausgegeben von Friedrich Jaeger. Copyright © J.B. Metzlersche Verlagsbuchhandlung und Carl Ernst Poeschel Verlag GmbH 2005–2012. Consulted online on 01 April 2023 <http://dx.doi.org/10.1163/2352-0272_emho_COM_020866>
First published online: 2015
First print edition: 20160907

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