The Last Duel: A True Story of Trial by Combat in Medieval France

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For the Chinese film, see The Last Duel (film).

The Last Duel: A True Story of Trial by Combat in Medieval France is a book by Eric Jager concerning the last officially recognized judicial duel fought in France. It tells the story of the December 29, 1386 trial by combat between Norman knight Jean de Carrouges and the squire Jacques Le Gris. Carrouges had accused Le Gris of raping his wife Marguerite de Carrouges, née de Thibouville, that previous January, and had gone to King Charles VI seeking an appeal to the decision handed down by Count Pierre d'Alençon, whom Carrouges believed favored Le Gris. Whichever combatant still alive at the end of the duel would be declared the winner as a sign of God's will. If Jean de Carrouges lost the duel, Marguerite de Carrouges would be burned at the stake as punishment for her false accusation. Le Gris died.


An abridged version of the book was read by Robert Glenister on BBC Radio 4 as Book of the Week between Monday 10 and Friday 14 January 2005.[1] The Last Duel, a drama-documentary based on the book and including comments by Jager was broadcast by BBC Four as part of a medieval-themed season on April 24, 2008.


  1. ^ Daoust, Phil (10 January 2005). "Radio Pick of the Day". The Guardian. London. Retrieved 2010-06-10.