">
Online Counter Lock, Stock, and History, What fighting like a girl was all about in...
Lock, Stock, and History
What fighting like a girl was all about in Georgian Era Britain —- Elizabeth “Lady Bare Knuckles” Stokes
Think that women’s boxing or MMA fighting is a recent development in fighting sports?  Think again.  From the 18th to early 19th century it was not uncommon for women to fight in the ring as well as men.  Back then boxing was not the boxing of today, not by a long shot.  Venues tended to be saloons, pubs, small arenas, or even open streets and back-alleys.  Rules differed from venue to venue, but for the most part fights were done bare knuckled, and many fights were a no holds barred type setup.  Some fights even included deadly weapons such as clubs, swords, and staves.  Needless to say, injury and death was common.
One of the most famous female fighters in early 18th century Britain was Elizabeth Stokes (born Elizabeth Wilkinson), a mother and fighter whose career lasted mostly throughout the 1720’s.  In 1722 she was challenged by Hannah Highfield for a prize of three guineas.  Stokes accepted the challenge but offered a counter challenge,
 “I, Elizabeth Wilkinson of Clerkenwell, who had earlier had some words with Hannah Hyfield, ‘challenged and invited’ her to meet me on the stage for three guineas. Each fighter will hold half-a-crown in each hand and the first to drop the money would lose the battle”
Elizabeth won after a 22 minute fight, giving Hannah Hyfield a savage thumping that caused her to drop her coin.  Later in the evening she won another fight against a woman named Martha Jones.
After the fight with Hannah Hyfield Stoke’s career took off, making her the most popular female fighter in Britain and earning her the name “Lady Bareknuckles”.  After marrying her husand James Stokes, the couple often fought in paired and tag-team matches.  Incredibly Stoke’s even fought men on a number of occasions, something that was rare in bareknuckle boxing.  Even more incredibly, she trounced them every time, beating the crap out of them with her swift and powerful fists.  Not only was she a master pugilist, Stokes was also skilled with weapons as well.  She was known to be particularly skilled with the cudgel and short sword.
By the mid 19th century women’s fighting had come to a close as professional organizations, rules, and Victorian Era prejudices against women drove the sport underground and turned fighting into a gentlemen’s sport.

What fighting like a girl was all about in Georgian Era Britain —- Elizabeth “Lady Bare Knuckles” Stokes

Think that women’s boxing or MMA fighting is a recent development in fighting sports?  Think again.  From the 18th to early 19th century it was not uncommon for women to fight in the ring as well as men.  Back then boxing was not the boxing of today, not by a long shot.  Venues tended to be saloons, pubs, small arenas, or even open streets and back-alleys.  Rules differed from venue to venue, but for the most part fights were done bare knuckled, and many fights were a no holds barred type setup.  Some fights even included deadly weapons such as clubs, swords, and staves.  Needless to say, injury and death was common.

One of the most famous female fighters in early 18th century Britain was Elizabeth Stokes (born Elizabeth Wilkinson), a mother and fighter whose career lasted mostly throughout the 1720’s.  In 1722 she was challenged by Hannah Highfield for a prize of three guineas.  Stokes accepted the challenge but offered a counter challenge,

 “I, Elizabeth Wilkinson of Clerkenwell, who had earlier had some words with Hannah Hyfield, ‘challenged and invited’ her to meet me on the stage for three guineas. Each fighter will hold half-a-crown in each hand and the first to drop the money would lose the battle”

Elizabeth won after a 22 minute fight, giving Hannah Hyfield a savage thumping that caused her to drop her coin.  Later in the evening she won another fight against a woman named Martha Jones.

After the fight with Hannah Hyfield Stoke’s career took off, making her the most popular female fighter in Britain and earning her the name “Lady Bareknuckles”.  After marrying her husand James Stokes, the couple often fought in paired and tag-team matches.  Incredibly Stoke’s even fought men on a number of occasions, something that was rare in bareknuckle boxing.  Even more incredibly, she trounced them every time, beating the crap out of them with her swift and powerful fists.  Not only was she a master pugilist, Stokes was also skilled with weapons as well.  She was known to be particularly skilled with the cudgel and short sword.

By the mid 19th century women’s fighting had come to a close as professional organizations, rules, and Victorian Era prejudices against women drove the sport underground and turned fighting into a gentlemen’s sport.

  1. khronicbitchface reblogged this from girlsgotbrawls
  2. shehadawarriorsheart reblogged this from whiskeysnarker
  3. cj-amused reblogged this from ninjatwins
  4. splicersandsirensgalore reblogged this from jenniferrpovey
  5. lalitrus reblogged this from jenniferrpovey
  6. jenniferrpovey reblogged this from lalitrus and added:
    A lot of people forget that women’s rights went BACKWARDS during the Victorian era and through into the 1950s, with the...
  7. soapsayswhat reblogged this from lalitrus
  8. whimsicalsocks reblogged this from lalitrus
  9. homevideovixen reblogged this from jayjsupremacy
  10. lauren-e-james reblogged this from theladyragnell
  11. chickenjoeisradical reblogged this from whatthebuckybarnes
  12. superwholocksnk reblogged this from monsters-and-connoisseurs
  13. monsters-and-connoisseurs reblogged this from raidofthepanties
  14. sophy-and-godzilla reblogged this from raidofthepanties
  15. raidofthepanties reblogged this from apathink
  16. cosmosworldatlast reblogged this from apathink
  17. stereotypical-mec3b2m reblogged this from screaming-till-im-numb
  18. ju2t-run-wiith-iit reblogged this from screaming-till-im-numb
  19. foreverthepretender reblogged this from apathink
  20. damnyoumodernsociety reblogged this from screaming-till-im-numb
  21. brokedownroyals reblogged this from ourlivesarentjustmeasuredinyears
  22. contrasting-the-pains reblogged this from peashooter85
  23. melancholiavibes reblogged this from screaming-till-im-numb
  24. otaku-p reblogged this from screaming-till-im-numb
  25. dontdeservetoknow reblogged this from ourlivesarentjustmeasuredinyears
  26. ourlivesarentjustmeasuredinyears reblogged this from screaming-till-im-numb
  27. screaming-till-im-numb reblogged this from apathink
  28. apathink reblogged this from thecapedturtle
  29. strangecarcajou reblogged this from senor-water-moose
  30. kairibloodheart reblogged this from goldentilde
  31. metanoiamouths reblogged this from the-angry-agender