Bonanza Wiki
Bonanza episode
“The Duke”
Season 2, Episode 25
#57 in Series
Air date March 11, 1961
Production code
Guest starring:
Written by Theodore Ferro

Mathilde Ferro
William R. Cox

Directed by Robert Altman
Episode Guide
Previous Episode:
The Dark Gate
Next Episode:
Cutthroat Junction
External links
The Duke on IMDb


An arrogant British boxer who calls himself "The Duke of London" shows up in Virginia City with his drunken brother/manager, Limey. He challenges a meek young man, J.D., by viciously beating him in a bar fight and then assaulting his girlfriend. Hoss eventually takes on "The Duke" in a match that will hopefully teach the loutish show-off a lesson.


The Cartwrights challenge an arrogant and cruel British prizefighter, the Duke, and his alcoholic manager to a bout with John Heenan (the Benicia Boy), who is in San Francisco, after the Cartwrights' meek friend J.D. gets pulverized by the Duke in a bar-fight.

J.D. is adored by saloon girl Marge, but he has been too shy to return her affections.

While the Cartwrights wait to see if Heenan will actually take the bout, the Duke pursues Marge and assaults her when she rebuffs him. When the manager comes to Marge's rescue, he too is beaten up by the Duke (who, it turns out, is the manager's brother).

Infuriated by all this, Hoss Cartwright himself challenges the Duke. Hoss knocks out the Duke in the fourth round of a bare-knuckle fight refereed by Sheriff Coffee. The Duke and his brother/manager reconcile in the humility of defeat.

They then learn that the Benicia Boy will accept the proposed bout, but only if the Duke comes to San Francisco. The Duke apologizes to all he has offended while in Virginia City and heads west to fight Heenan.


The Cartwrights[]



  • Al Christy: Joe
  • Betty Endicott: Brunette Saloongirl
  • Bill Clark: Cowboy in Blue Shirt
  • Bob Miles: Cowboy in Checked Shirt
  • Jason Evers: J.D. Lambert
  • J. Pat O'Malley: Harry Simpson
  • Martha Manor: Blonde Saloongirl
  • Maxwell Reed: Clarence 'The Duke of London' Simpson
  • Randy Stuart: Marge Fuller


Did you know?[]

  • German episode title: "Entscheidung im Ring", meaning "Decision In The Ring".




See also[]