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All About History - - HOW TO WIN A JOUST -

In early tour­na­ments, knights who lost for­feited their ar­mour and horse to the vic­tor. They would then have to pay a ran­som to get it back from the knight who de­feated them. Wil­liam Mar­shal cap­tured ran­soms from 103 knights in a ten-month pe­riod of tour­na­ments. As the rules of chivalry de­vel­oped, merce­nary ten­dency be­came un­seemly. Later jousts cul­mi­nated in grand gift giv­ing cer­e­monies presided over by the ladies of the court. Prizes could be a gold plate, jew­els, crowns, costly gar­ments, weapons, ar­mour, or even ex­otic an­i­mals like talk­ing par­rots. In Magde­burg in the 1280s, the first prize in a tour­na­ment was a beau­ti­ful woman, though the win­ner chastely paid her dowry to marry an­other man. In 1352, Amadeus IV of Savoy won three gold rings and three kisses from beau­ti­ful women. He kept the kisses but passed the rings to other wor­thy jousters – they grum­bled that they would have pre­ferred the kisses.

Prizes were of­ten dis­trib­uted by the ladies of the tour­na­ment

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