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The Return of Bartitsu

May 26th, 2013 - 6:45 am

Fascinating WSJ story that I wish had gone on for pages longer:

When the guy swung at Mark Donnelly, his only means of defense was a black umbrella—and a foppish one at that. But, ducking under a roundhouse punch, he jabbed the pointy end of the umbrella into the attacker’s gut, stopping him cold.

Mr. Donnelly, who is 43 years old and several inches short of 6 feet tall, then straightened his waistcoat, and the two men shook hands.

The skirmish was a rare demonstration of Bartitsu, an obscure Victorian system of gentlemanly self-defense practiced by Sherlock Holmes, Sir Arthur Conan Doyle’s legendary detective.

You’ll want to take a few minutes this weekend and read the rest.

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All Comments   (5)
All Comments   (5)
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Did anyone follow the link from the comments to site for the Unbreakable Umbrella?
Holy crow, I want one. They're too expensive for someone like me who leaves umbrellas and gloves in random places, but one of these would be great for situations where 'real' weapons would be out of place.
1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
...urgh, that's "to *the* site", of course....
1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
I remember well the scene in Stevenson's _The Strange Case of Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde_, where Hyde beats an elderly peer to death with a heavy cane.
It's an interesting, short book with many subtleties that the film adaptations miss. Jekyll, not Hyde, is the source of evil, and he is not a particularly sympathetic character. Jekyll's friends seem to believe that Hyde is Jekyll's bastard son snd is blackmailing him, and this isn't really so far from the truth -- but the truth is more terrible yet, of course.
1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
Not entirely unrelated to the rise of the Victorians:

http://pjmedia.com/instapundit/169622/
1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
Actually, Sherlock Holmes used "baritsu", whatever that is. Bartitsu is 1) British, not Japanese, 2) invented three years after it's meant to have saved Holmes' life, and 3) not a style of wrestling, but 4) a martial art with a heavy emphasis on cane-fighting - and those who have read Final Problem will understand why I saved that point for last.
1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
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