SCA news sites

Re-enactors to invade Menorca July 2014 - Sun, 2014-01-19 01:20

Visitors to Spain's island of Menorca in July 2014 will receive a special treat when an historic re-enactment of the island’s invasion by Catalonian and Aragonese troops in the Middle Ages will take place in the capital's Plaza Conquesta.

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Categories: SCA news sites

New file in the PERSONAL CARE section: Hiccups-art

Stefan's Florilegium - Sat, 2014-01-18 19:34
Hiccops-art (6K) 12/28/13 "Medieval oddities: Hiccups" by Lady Catherine Ambrose.

New file in the PERIOD-THOUGHT section: E-Eglsh-Prose-art

Stefan's Florilegium - Sat, 2014-01-18 19:32
E-Eglsh-Prose-art(165K) 12/27/13 "Echoes of Oral Tradition in the Dialogues of Ælfric’s Natale Sancte Agnetis" by Detlef von Marburg. (Master's thesis)

The unicorn phenomenon - Sat, 2014-01-18 13:49

Unicorns have been a part of the known bestiary since Greek and Roman times. In his book, A Natural History of Unicorns, University of Nottingham geographer Chris Lavers looks at the history of the beast and human obsession with it.

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Categories: SCA news sites

Basilica "of enormous importance" excavated on Cyprus - Fri, 2014-01-17 17:18

Archaeologists from the Cyprus Antiquities Department have unearthed the remains of a 7th century basilica the size of Westminster Abbey near the Royal Air Force Station of Akrotiri on Cyprus. Experts believe that the huge church was only used for 30 years.

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Categories: SCA news sites

Market Day at Birka Bardic Challenge from Aildreda de Tamwurthe

East Kingdom Gazette - Fri, 2014-01-17 15:15

Greetings to the singers, poets, drinkers, and wits of the East Kingdom! Lady Aildreda de Tamwurthe issues unto you a convivial challenge for the festival season, now to be answered at the Market Day at Birka in the Barony of Stonemarche.

The cheerful poets of Beuern have left us many jolly songs and poems about the simple pleasures of drinking and good cheer, and one of the most familiar is “Bache Bene Venies”. Like all good drinking songs, it has many many verses – each long enough to be clever, but short enough to let everyone who only knows the refrain sing it often and boisterously.

My challenge to you – write me a NEW verse! It can be in Latin, it can be in English – the only requirement is that it scan to the original and that it address the same subjects of pastimes in good company. We can sing it together, or with any like-minded friends, or I can sing it *to* you – and in the spirit of the song, if you bring me a new verse, I will buy you a drink from the fine establishment that is hosting our Market Day revels. (If you prefer not to drink spiritous libations, fret not – I am certain that we can work out an appropriate exchange in the moment!)

Here is a recording of the tune for reference; it is one of *many*, so do feel free to go out and find any that you love:

And here are a few verses and the chorus, to give you a sense (general translation provided also):

1. Bache bene venies gratus et optatus
per quem noster animus fit letificatus

Welcome, Bacchus, pleasing and desired,
through whom our spirits are made joyful.

R: Istud vinum bonum vinum vinum generosum
reddit virum curialem probum animosum

This wine, good wine, kindly wine,
makes a man noble, honest, spirited.

2. Iste cyphus concavus de bono mero profluus
siquis bibit sepius satur fit et ebrius

This hollow cup overflows with good wine;
of anyone drinks often he will be sated and drunk.

3. Bachus venas penetrans calido liquore
facit eas igneas Veneris ardore.

Bacchus entering their veins with hot liquor
sets them afire with the heat of Venus.

oh! I look forward to hearing your merry words! If you have any questions, please drop me a message.

- Aildreda de Tamwurthe, Dean of Belles Lettres, East Kingdom College of Performers

Filed under: Arts and Sciences, Events

Pope Francis displays bones of St. Peter - Fri, 2014-01-17 14:24

For the first time ever, the relics of St. Peter, discovered in the necropolis under St. Peter's Basilica in 1939, were displayed during mass, and prayed over by the Pope. The relices include nine pieces of bone. (photos)

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Categories: SCA news sites

“Did you know?” Tir Mara

East Kingdom Gazette - Fri, 2014-01-17 12:53

Most everyone knows that the East Kingdom in the SCA includes parts of two modern countries, the United States of America and Canada, but how much do you really know about the Huge East Kingdom Crown Principality to the North East?

The Crown Principality (CP) of Tir Mara is basically a region, but with the intention of someday becoming a full principality. The Heirs to the East Kingdom also become our Heads of State upon being invested as Prince and Princess, so you may see them wearing our heraldic Blue and White and eight pointed blue star on occasion, and we appreciate that.

Tir Mara consists of the Canadian Provinces of Quebec, New Brunswick, Prince Edward Island, Nova Scotia, and Newfoundland and Labrador.  That is a pretty BIG chunk of land.  It is bigger than the rest of the East Kingdom, actually, despite that fact we have quite a small population both modern and SCA. The Easternmost residents of Tir Mara are actually on an island which means to get  from one end of the Crown Principality to the other one must take an airplane, or a ferry.   Yes, travel is something Tir Marans do because we have to; for example, travel between Ruantallan (Nova Scotia) and Ar n’Eilean-ne (St John’s, NF) takes 24 hours by car and ferry.  In Ruantallan alone the cantons are all over an hour across, and local events can be ½ hour to 4 hours away and still be within that barony.

The CP of Tir Mara has three Baronies, Isle du Dragon Dormant, which we shorten to IDD, (Montreal), Havre des Glaces (Quebec City and surrounding area) and Ruantallan (Nova Scotia and Prince Edward Island).  Ruantallan, our oldest barony, also has the majority SCA membership within Tir Mara with 120-150 members on average.

IDD was the third Barony formed in what is now Tir Mara, and once was Northern Shores.  Both IDD and Havre des Glaces are French-speaking baronies.  Thus anyone visiting us will often hear our Tir Maran or Royal courts heralded in both French and English, the official languages of Canada (and Tir Mara).   Actually the French we speak is mostly Quebecquois, a dialect unique to Canada, so do not question your school taught French when talking to one of the francophone Tir Marans.

The Shire of Lyndhaven and the Incipient Shire of Avonmore are located in the only officially bilingual province in Canada (New Brunswick) and have the happy coincidence of being the centre region of Tir Mara.  Lyndhaven also happens to be the geographic centre of the East Kingdom, as well, but not if we calculated by population, then the centre would be far to the south!

Did you know?  We actually have our own Tir Mara Royal Travel Fund to help defray travel costs for royalty visiting Tir Mara. Established by Mistress Gwenhwyfar dinas Emrys, OP and her sister Mistress Zaneta Gavlinne Angiolieri, OP, each group who raises money for the fund  can then access that money for royal visits to their group.  Started in 2004, this project has increased royal visits to Tir Mara remarkably and money is raised throughout Tir Mara in a number of ways:  t-shirt sales, boxed lunch auctions, silent auctions, etc..

Our money is different, we have coins for our dollar bills (Loonies) and our two-dollar bills (Toonies) and our paper bills are not only colourful but they are also now made of plastic.  Often our money is on par with the US dollar, but we are more likely to have it just below the US dollar to encourage economic trade, and so, for Tir Marans in the SCA, it is a kindness when reserving for pre-paid events in the US that we have access to ACCEPs or get to pay in US currency at the door. Money orders in Canada can be quite expensive.  We do tend to extend this courtesy to our US event attendees, reserve and pay at the door, and usually Tir Mara can take either currency. However, it is always good to check with the event staff when attending events in Tir Mara.

And when you arrive to an event, do be prepared to stand for the evening toasts with the masses.  Canada still maintains its Royal Citizenship, thus we tend to treat that part of the SCA with the same protocols we’d do if HRM Elizabeth II, Queen of Canada (as well as the UK), Herself was being saluted, everyone standing. Vivat!

So, Tir Marans may sound a bit different, eh? Oui?  Do some things a bit differently than is done in the US part of the kingdom, but we hope the modern border  just adds to the travel adventure when you come to our events, (as it does for us when we travel south). And, remember, you are still in the East Kingdom; Welcome Home!

This article was written by the Tir Mara Correspondent:
Mistress Elizabeth “Bess” Darnley

Filed under: Local Groups

Q&A: Registering Names and Devices with Mistress Alys Mackyntoich - Fri, 2014-01-17 11:06

Mistress Alys Mackyntoich answered a Q&A for the East Kingdom Gazette that covers the process of registering names and devices in the East Kingdom.

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Categories: SCA news sites

In Memoriam: Lord Ragnarr Dragonheart

East Kingdom Gazette - Fri, 2014-01-17 00:21

It is with great sadness that the Gazette reports on the passing of Lord Ragnarr Dragonheart.  He passed away on January 3rd, 2014. He is survived by his lady, Lady Fionnghuala Na Lamh Bann.

Lord Ragnarr joined the SCA in the fall of 1993 and was an active member of the Barony of Settmour Swamp for over 20 years, serving as the Seneschal of Gryphonwald for a number of years, and as a warranted Marshal.  He was granted both a Bronze and Iron Tower from Settmour Swamp for his service and martial prowess. Following his passing, Their Excellencies Erec and Jehannine of Settmour Swamp had the following to say:

Ragnarr Dragonheart has perished from the Earth. Sharp of wit, a valiant soul, a mighty warrior, the heart of the dragon in the body of a man that body could no longer contain. We are honored to have known him, to walk this earth with him, to join him in arms, and quaff ale at his table. He gave of himself, and spread mirth and joy where ere he went. Our Barony was richer for his presence. Ragnarr Dragonheart, you will sorely be missed.

Lord Ragnarr was a member of the Dark Horde and Clan na Bheithir.  He was squired to Syr Teric Gwynedd for over a decade.  Syr Teric had the following to say of his squire:

Ragnarr’s generosity, love of fun and creativity were boundless. Ragnar had a heart of gold and would do anything for anyone. He had a driving desire to make everything he did as fun as he could for all involved. A man of quirky humor, with a strong sense of honor. Ragnar will be sorely missed by his Lady Fionnghuala Na Lamh Bann, his Barony, his friends, his Horde bretheren and my household.  Enjoy Valhalla my friend and my Squire, I will miss you.

A memorial service will be held on Saturday, January 18th, 2014 from 2-4pm at Flynn and Son Funeral Home, 23 Ford Ave., Fords, NJ.

Full information is available on his obituary.

Filed under: Uncategorized Tagged: obituary

Persian arms and armor articles online - Thu, 2014-01-16 23:01

On his website, Dr. Manouchehr Moshtagh Khorasani has posted a number of his articles on Iranian and Persian armoring and swordsmithing. Most of the articles are available in English in PDF format.

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Categories: SCA news sites

SCA Teen Surveys re-posted - Thu, 2014-01-16 21:27

Lady Saehildr barngo'dhr reports that she has re-posted two surveys regarding teen participation in the SCA. The surveys will be open until January 22, 2014.

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Categories: SCA news sites

How to Volunteer at an Event

East Kingdom Gazette - Wed, 2014-01-15 23:59

The following article was written by Lady Ose Silverhair as part of the Gazette’s ongoing “How to…” series.

Think back to your favorite event. No matter what it was, it was a success because of the work of many volunteers. Perhaps you’ve thought about volunteering, but are unsure about how to go about it. There are several ways to get involved.

Attend your group’s business meeting. This is where people propose to put on an event. The event steward will be looking for volunteers for set-up, clean-up and everything in between. The needs will vary depending on the event, but one thing is certain – many hands make light work. Even if you don’t want to do anything more complicated than pushing a broom, your help will be appreciated.

Don’t think that you can only help at your local events. At any event you can mention to the person at gate that you would like to help, and they will point you in the right direction. If all else fails, poke your head in the kitchen and offer to help chop or serve. It is rare that they can’t use an extra pair of hands.

Whether you would like to help decorate, cook, teach, fill water jugs, serve, spell someone who needs a bathroom break, make announcements, carry things, wash dishes, count, fold up tables and chairs…there is a place for you. Volunteer. It’s a wonderful way to get to know people. It’s easy. Just walk up to someone and say, “I’d like to help.”

Filed under: Events

Soldiers cross swords in Hellsgate - Wed, 2014-01-15 22:10

It was the Army vs. the Army when members of the SCA chapter Stronghold of Hellsgate, in the Kingdom of Ansteorra, met in Carl Levin Park, Harker Heights,Texas in August 2013. Sgt. Samuel Northrup has the story for the 7th Mobile Public Affairs Detachment. (photos)

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Categories: SCA news sites

New file in the PERFORMANCE ARTS section: Early-Keybrds-art

Stefan's Florilegium - Wed, 2014-01-15 20:54
Early-Keybrds-art (7K) 12/11/13 "Early Keyboards and Their Music" by Domhnall O'Dochartaigh.

Updated file in the FOOD-MEATS section: horse-recipes-msg

Stefan's Florilegium - Wed, 2014-01-15 20:51
horse-recipes-msg (61K) 12/13/13 Period horse recipes. References.

"Grubby, old pot" contains rare coin - Tue, 2014-01-14 18:52

For eight years, a grubby, old pot sat in a basement in Rothbury, England. It was not until recently that builder Richard Mason, who found the pot on Lindisfarne, took a second look, discovering a hoard of gold and silver dating to the 16th century.

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Categories: SCA news sites

Estrella War XXX Special Events Games Edition - Tue, 2014-01-14 15:27

KNOWN WORLD Jan 6, 2014 Estrella War Announcement Digest Special Event Games Edition

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Categories: SCA news sites

Drachenwald Winter 2014 Coronation photos online - Tue, 2014-01-14 07:55

Bridget Greywolf reports that she has created an album of photos from  Drachenwald 2014 Winter Coronation which took place recently in Sweden. The photos are available on her public Facebook page.

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Categories: SCA news sites

King’s and Queen’s Bardic Competition Rules

East Kingdom Gazette - Mon, 2014-01-13 18:29

The Barony of Bergental is pleased to be hosting this year’s King & Queen’s Bardic Championships in conjunction with our traditional Novice Schola and Baronial Birthday on March 8th.

The Bardic Championships are scheduled to begin at 11:00 am.  Here are details of the format as provided by the current Queen’s Bard, Maistre Lucien:

East Kingdom Bardic Championship

The competition will take place over three rounds with the following parameters:  first round, a piece written on an SCA theme OR a documentably period piece; second round, the other of the two options given in the first round; third round, Their Majesties’ choice.
Competitors will be judged by Their Majesties and an advisory
committee on choice of material, artistic impression, audience impact,
technical skill, and individual response.

Each performer is asked to submit, prior to the first round, an
index-card-sized summary of types of performances and styles the
performer would be willing to perform with little or no prior notice.
This gives the performers a chance to display versatility as well as
skill, and gives Their Majesties additional information as they
consider their next bardic champions.  Their Majesties will choose
something from this list for the final round, so consider well what
you may be called upon to perform!  **(Examples are below.)

Time allowing, those not wishing to be considered as champions may
perform for the recognition of the King and Queen.

Performers may choose between a documentably period piece, or a work
written on an SCA theme.  First round pieces may not exceed five
minutes.  (Longer works should be performed in excerpt.)

For this competition, a Period Piece is defined as directly historical
or utilizing period styles (tunes, stories, music adapted from a
primary source, etc.).  Please provide brief documentation for a period
piece, such as would fit upon an index card.  For this competition, an
“SCA theme” may be broadly interpreted as any work written about SCA
persons, events, or culture, and does not require documentation.

If the performer’s choice for the first round was a period piece, this
must be a work on an SCA theme, and v/v.  Rounds one and two should
differ in some other way, for example, lively/slow, spoken/sung,
wistful/cheerful, etc.  Second round pieces should be no longer than
eight minutes in length.

This final round will be Their Majesties’ choice, guided by the
performer’s earlier works, the skills which have been listed in their
performance summary, and a brief interview of the entrant.  Performers
will have a few minutes to prepare.

The new Bardic Champions will be announced and begin their service at
Court this day.

Bardic Champions are expected to:
* Make an effort to attend at minimum the Crown Tournaments and
Coronations during their tenure, and Pennsic if at all possible, as
well as other Kingdom Events and Royal Progresses as the Champion is
* Be willing/able to perform at courts, feasts, and other functions
(and at the whim of Their Royal Majesties).
* Be willing/able to perform something on the spur of the moment
(especially in the event of a delay breaking out).
* Commemorate the history of The Crowns and the East Kingdom in song
and story.
* Advise and assist the Crown in the organization of the competition
to choose their successors.

Name (list relevant SCA info) what you do that makes you you as a
performer, and what you can do on command.

Romanus Gaius Cantus (SC, OTC, Troubadour)  Roman-style boasts, filk
on any topic to the tune of the Maltese Bransle or Greensleeves, good
at extemporaneous speaking, can chant war-style marching songs in
Latin.  Excellent at theatre-style reading text I have not seen before.

Skihald the Viking (King’s Bard to John VIII, Troubadour, Order of the
Maunche, Order of the Laurel) Perform and write Norse-styled poetry
in English, tell skaldic tales from 4 to 10 minutes in length from
hilarious to morose, excellent teller of jokes, intermediate juggler,
have several magic tricks I have worked into period settings.

Ysibeau du Provance Period pieces in French for solo voice or
recorder, Latin sacred music of the 12th century, improvisational
harp.  Can write small praise poems in French and English with some
notice.  Familiar with some music from most SCA periods, and
SCA-appropriate songs.  I am good at selecting music for different

Haven Fortnight (Bard to Baron of the Place) I know a handful of
period pieces, but my strengths are really SCA-appropriate non-period
songs composed by others (traditional, folk tradition, SCA-composers)
or by myself.  I also play guitar.  I can write pieces on commission
with some notice.  I can play and stroll at the same time.  I can write
in rhyming verse on short notice on nearly any topic and present it.

Questions regarding the competition format or requirements should be
directed to the current Queen’s Bard, Maistre Lucien de Pontivy, via
email at <>, at least one week prior to the
competition.  For any other questions, please contact the event

Filed under: Arts and Sciences, Events Tagged: Bardic, bardic champions, King and Queen's Champions