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"It was on the Rütli Meadow that the Swiss Confederation was first formed on 1 August 1291. For 650 years, Swiss fighting men had earned the reputation as the most ferocious in Europe. Their determined refusal to live under the rule of foreign kings, was legendary. Most people know the story of William Tell, the hero who refused to bow before the Austrian governor Gessler. He was condemned to shoot an apple off the head of his 6-year old son at 120 paces. If he refused, both father and son would be executed. In a remarkable display of archery skill, William Tell succeeded in hitting the apple and missing his son. Congratulating Tell, Gessler asked why he had another arrow in his quiver. Tell responded that, had he injured the child, he would have sent the remaining arrow into the governor's heart. Tell was condemned to life imprisonment for his insolence, but he escaped while being transported across Lake Lucerne." - Peter Hammond

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This page contains a single entry by Jim Rawles published on April 27, 2006 11:33 PM.

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