Re At the students Dueling-Ground

From: Eugene Leitl (
Date: Wed Jan 26 2000 - 15:27:28 MST

Traditional mensur fencing, resulting in desireable face scars
(Schmisse) is relatively common in many german student fraternities
(Burschenschaften). It was a lot more popular in the 60s/70s, though.
It is highly ritualized (these are not duels but scheduled
swordfights, with body/eye protection, in a special settings, under
the surveillance of a member (Schlagemeister? websearch comes up with
nothing, so I must misremember)) and far from being encouraged by

Brian D Williams writes:
> >I believe that dueling still occurs in some European places, in
> >particular, someplace in Heidelberg, (but I haven't located it,
> >yet). It's called mensur fencing. One of the friends of my
> >colleague proudly wears the scar across his cheek that he acquired
> >in his duel here. (These folks put salt in their cheek wound to
> >make sure that the scar is noticeable when the wound heals.) The
> >wearing of the scar is some kind of sign of honor (frankly, I
> >don't get it).
> I always thought this was part of the University of Heidelberg, or
> Konigsberg, Heinlein mentions it in "Starship Troopers" I believe.
> I always remember Tycho Brahe and his golden nose, supposedly lost
> in a student duel over who was the greater mathematician......

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