SCA news sites

New Historical Combat Policy

AEthelmearc Gazette - Thu, 2015-05-28 11:44

Good morning!

It is my pleasure to announce to the Kingdom that we have a newly approved Historical Combat Policy. This policy will allow us to pursue, study, and demonstrate additional historical combat techniques and weapons in controlled and safe environments.

This is a non-competitive historical martial art activity that does allow for full practicing of scripted plays and maneuvers in controlled settings and with some restrictions. I think it will be a great avenue for further research and growth of the fighting arts. One of the big differences that this format will allow is the incorporation of grappling and weapon techniques not permitted in existing SCA martial systems. I look forward to getting this program off the ground.

I will be looking to add marshals for this activity in the coming weeks. Anyone wishing to be considered as a marshal should contact me at Please include any relevant experience and study. Currently Master Ian Muir is our only other approved marshal.

For those looking to participate, and I hope there are many of you, please take the time to review the policy which can be found here. Feel free to contact me with any questions and look for more information in the near future.

Finally, let me take the time to thank everyone that helped make this happen. It was a collaborative process and I appreciate everyone’s efforts.

Deputy for Historic Combat

Categories: SCA news sites

'History geeks" learn siege warfare in Atlantia - Wed, 2015-05-27 14:11

“This is very much the kind of group where you get out what you put in. You find something you love and pursue it. Then when you know a little bit about it you can share it with others,” said Jason Shealey about the SCA. Lisa Kaylor of the Augusta (Virginia) Chronicle has the story. (photo)

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Categories: SCA news sites

Request for Brewing Articles

East Kingdom Gazette - Wed, 2015-05-27 12:31

Forwarded from the SCA Publications Manager

Contribute to our next Quest Article Now!

From the editor of Tournaments Illuminated: Our upcoming Quest topic is “Hints For Brewers“, with Guest Editors Brian Kettering | Donal O’Brien and Elspeth Payne / Sorcha Crowe.

Beverages, sauces and syrups: The brewer’s art encompasses many libations and potations, alcoholic and non-alcoholic, still and sparkling, convivial cups and condiments. Whatever the end product, brewers practice a sort of liquid alchemy. Share the skills that make the magic: Hints, tips and tricks on any aspect of the brewing art, any product, any stage of production.

Send your “tun” of information (up to 300 words) to by June 1 and it may be included in the 3rd Quarter 2015 Issue of Tournaments Illuminated. If you’d like to include images of your process, please write for photo specs.

Submission of any work to TI constitutes permission to publish said work without compensation in any form, including, but not limited to, electronically on a publicly accessible webpage. The author retains all original copyrights to the submission.

Filed under: Announcements, Arts and Sciences

Polling Responses due May 28

East Kingdom Gazette - Wed, 2015-05-27 10:24

Their Majesties, Omega and Etheldreda, issued Their second round of Award Order Pollings on April 28, and responses are due back to Them by tomorrow, May 28.

This is just a friendly reminder to complete and submit your replies!

Filed under: Official Notices Tagged: awards, pollings

Update: Youth Combat at Pennsic

East Kingdom Gazette - Wed, 2015-05-27 09:07

The following update was posted on the official Pennsic website:

In compliance with new Pennsylvania Commonwealth Law and due to potential medical risk considerations involving martial activities the following policy is now in effect:

Minors authorized in Martial activities and bearing a gold tape diamond on their helms on which their parent or legal guardian’s cell phone number is written, may participate in battles. Parents should have the cell phone in hand in case of emergency.

Filed under: Pennsic

Minors Fighting at Pennsic

AEthelmearc Gazette - Wed, 2015-05-27 07:47

The following announcement is from the official Pennsic website:

In compliance with new Pennsylvania Commonwealth Law and due to potential medical risk considerations involving martial activities the following policy is now in effect:

Minors authorized in Martial activities and bearing a gold tape diamond on their helms on which their parent or legal guardian’s cell phone number is written, may participate in battles. Parents should have the cell phone in hand in case of emergency.

The Gazette will keep you posted on new developments if and as they arise.

Categories: SCA news sites

St. Swithin’s Throw Back Three Day!

AEthelmearc Gazette - Tue, 2015-05-26 18:22

The Bog would like to welcome you to our event this year.

We’re calling it Throwback 3 Day in the hopes that you’ll appear, to celebrate our past with us, it will be such a treat.

We’ll have marshal activities, scribal arts and thee best food to eat.

Their Majesties will be here, and the Prince and Princess, too.

What better day to meet up with old friends and with new.


Please join the Barony of St. Swithin’s Bog as we celebrate our past at this year’s Throwback 3 Day event. We’re in the mood to reminisce, so bust out that old garb you haven’t worn in years, and bring us your stories and old photographs from Bog events past. Throwback 3 Day will be held Friday July 17th-Sunday July 19th at the New Germany Grove- 1635 New Germany Rd Summerhill, Pa 15958. The site opens on Friday July 17th at 5:00pm and closes promptly at 12:00pm on Sunday. Camping is free and very much encouraged. No shower facilities are available, but please feel free to bring your own amenities. The site is discreetly wet and above ground fires are permitted. No pets allowed on site. The autocrat for this event is THLady Ursula of Rouen (Danielle Duvall, PO Box 661, Shepherdstown, WV  25443). Any questions can be sent to her at 540-287-1748 or Co-Autocrat for this event is THLady Rois O’Faye called Rosheen (Tracey Zimmerman) who can be reached at


The site fee for this weekend of friends, food and fellowship will be $10 for adults, $5 for children agest 6-17. Children 5 and under are the esteemed guests of Their Excellencies. Checks can be made payable to “SCA, Inc; Barony of St. Swithin’s Bog”. There will be a $5 non-member charge. Reservations can be sent to our reservations clerk Lord Battista (Paul Tedeski at 499 Southmont Blvd Johnstown, Pa 1590)5 at 724-859-7190 or Please, no calls after 8:30 PM. The only good reservation is a paid reservation.


Refreshments will be available Friday night for those camping, as well as breakfast Saturday morning. A Saturday day board is included in the site fee. Feast will be available Saturday evening for $8, and will be limited to the first 64 people. All dietary concerns should be sent to our Head Cook who promises several “Throw Back” treats and a day board that is sure to astound, Mistress AElfra Long (Sherry Meyers) at


Numerous activities will be held throughout the day Saturday including: the last leg of the Kingdom A&S Challenge, the 7 Pearls fencing tournament, and the AE 500 tournament. There will be fencing and heavy pick-ups in the afternoon, as well as throwing on the thrown weapons range. Scribes are encouraged to bring their paints and brushes and compete in the 7th Annual Iron Scribe competition.

Categories: SCA news sites

Known World Metal & Glass Symposium Seeking Teachers - Mon, 2015-05-25 16:08

The Falcon Banner reports that class proposals are now being accepted for the Known World Metal and Glass Symposium, September 4-7, 2015, in Mankato, MN.

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Categories: SCA news sites

Shakespearean Puppet Competition at Northern Oaken War Maneuvers - Sun, 2015-05-24 20:08

Mathurin of the Falcon Banner reports that Northern Oaken War Maneuvers in the Kingdom of the Middle will feature a Shakespearean Puppet Competition.

read more

Categories: SCA news sites

Heirs for the Midrealm

East Kingdom Gazette - Sun, 2015-05-24 16:33

From our compatriots at the Midrealm Gazette:

Crown Tourney Results

Sir Nikolai fighting for Mistress Serena defeated Syr Gunnar fighting for Baroness Finnpopla.


Filed under: Tidings

Bardic Profile: Morien MacBain

AEthelmearc Gazette - Sun, 2015-05-24 12:42

Hello again and welcome back to my series of profiles of our talented bards. Last time Alianora Bronhulle took the stage. This time, I’m sharing the words and thoughts of THL Morien MacBain, fighter, poet, and SCAdian par excellence. Morien received a well-deserved Sycamore at War Practice, so what better time to highlight his work? Congratulations to His Lordship! – Gwen

What’s your full SCA name (and anything else you typically use to introduce yourself)?
Hello, I’m Morien MacBain.

What attracted you to the bardic arts?
I remember all the wonderful bardic circles we had at every event back in the 80’s when I started. It was mostly SF con-suite filk (Star Wars/Star Trek/ Darkover/Dorsai/etc.) and the SCA originals (Catalan Vengeance, Song of the Shield Wall) and Rudyard Kipling by way of Leslie Fish (Cold Iron, and so on), and tall tales about drinking, woods battles, and drunken woods battles. Boy, those were great nights around the fire! Plus, I was an English major and later an English/History grad student, so I was swimming in poetry all the time, so when I started producing my own poetry, I had a good working knowledge of lots of period forms and examples to draw on.

How long have you considered yourself a bard / scop / scyld / minstrel / term-of-choice?
I’m not sure any of the really cool labels really fit me. I’m a poet and storyteller, I suppose. I don’t recite epics from memory, or play an instrument, and I’d say my singing voice is a decent baritone, but nothing to get worked up about. I suppose I started singing fairly early on my Scadian career, probably around ’88. I started writing poetry in a period vein around ’95, and most of the stories, songs, and poems I’m really proud of I wrote between ’98 and 2002, which is a bit sad, now that I think about it. That being said, my production has really picked up lately after that long dry spell, and  I wrote my first decent sestinas just a year or so ago, so I’m happy about that.

What’s your primary form (singer, storyteller, poet, etc.)? Do you play any instruments, and if so, which?
I used to play piano, keyboard bass, saxophone, lap dulcimer, and I made a stab at learning to play the Celtic harp, but I was mediocre or worse with all of them.  I can usually trust my voice, so I stick to that. I’d say most of my work these days is as a poet, but I usually perform as a singer/storyteller. I don’t like bardic contests, though, and tend to avoid them. I like to complete, but I like to do it with weapons. I don’t like competing against someone else’s art.

Where can we find your work?
I tend to post my poetry on Facebook. I suppose I really should start a blog and post it there, so it will all be in one place. I was very pleased a couple years ago to hear one of my stories being told around the campfire at Pennsic (in first person, as though the events had happened to the teller and not to me), and later one of my songs. I’ve entered the folk tradition! I just stood there in the road outside the circle of the fire, and felt kind of immortal, and part of Pennsic on a new level.

What sorts of pieces do you enjoy producing? What attracts you to that style?
I enjoy writing marching songs. Even when I set out to write or re-write a ballad, it tends to get those boots in there. There was a lot I didn’t enjoy about army basic training, but singing on the move every day was great, and I suppose that stayed with me. As far as poetry,  I mostly work in English sonnets, ottava rima, rhyme royal, Chaucerian couplets, and ballads (so mostly English language forms from the 14th to 16th Centuries), with occasional forays into ghazals, troubadour poetry, acrostics, alliterative verse, shaped verse, and novelties. I tend to stick to forms that are tightly structured, although I intend to write a play in blank verse at some point, just to see how it feels.

Describe a favorite performance of your own in the SCA. What makes it a highlight for you?
I really love singing “The Green Fields of Pennsic”, especially around the fire somewhere, usually after a couple beers, and people get their feet stomping, and their faces are glowing in the orange light. I wrote it many years ago, and it still seems fresh to me. It’s right in the center of my vocal range, naturally, as wrote it to sing myself.

Describe a performance by someone else that inspired you in the bardic arts. How did that performance guide you to improve your own art? What did it prompt you to do?
The late Lord Morgan Caer Graeme was a huge influence on me. He was at the first day event I ever went to, and he played his guitar and sang there after the fighting was over, so he was the very first Scadian bard I heard. Eventually, I joined in and sang too, taking my turn. Over the years, I learned a lot about confidence, breath control, song selection, projecting your persona, and the joy of the thing from watching him. It saddens me to think I’ll never hear him again.

What projects are you working on now?
I’m getting very interested in Spanish verse forms lately. I did a bicycling pilgrimage across Spain in 2011, and that sort of sparked it. We visited the site of a famous chivalric deed of arms in Ospital de Orbigo (on the Camino de Santiago, near Leon).  There’s a period account of it entitled El Libro del Passo Honoso por Suero de Quinones. As far as I can tell, there’s never been a published translation of the book into English, so I’m going to try that. Once it’s done, I’ll get people with actual Spanish skills to authenticate what I’ve done, and then I plan to try to write a version in verse (in English, but using period Spanish poetic forms). I’m also looking at doing work in an ancient Arabic form called the Ghazal. It’s all about longing, distance, the ways in which physical love and spiritual love get tangled together, and an elusive beloved who might be a beautiful woman, or God, or in some way both at once. I’ve tried it in the “freer” modern form, but I have high hopes for doing something worthwhile in a more strict period version.

Who are some of your favorite influences, either for your own research and composition, or for performing within the SCA?
I find the following works to be immensely useful in my work:  The Compleat Anachronist #44, The Troubadours, by Sylvan Glen’s own Mistress Lia, and #67 Ars Poetica Societatis, edited by Elizabeth Morris and Terry Sheehan. I suggest picking up the cheap Dover editions of The Cavalier Poets, Haiku, Selected Poems of Rumi, The Garden of Heaven: Poems of Hafiz, and all their one-dollar specials Dover does of Kipling and Yeats. Find a recording of Leslie Fish’s Cold Iron album if you possibly can. Also, go on Amazon and score copies of Through the Glass Window Shines the Sun: An Anthology of Medieval Poetry and Prose and Come Live With Me and Be My Love: A Pageant of Renaissance Poetry and Painting, both edited by Pamela Norris.  While you’re on there, bag a used CD of Sting’s Songs from the Labyrinth (not David Bowie’s songs from Labyrinth, which are totally cool, but not the same). If you’d like something with a little more academic heft, try English Lyrics Before 1500, edited by Theodore Silverstein. For extra credit, grab The Service of Ladies by Ulrich Von Liechtenstein (Yes, the guy in the movie, but not really.), edited by Kelly DeVries, and the Penguin Classics version of Li Po and Tu Fu. Amazing stuff!

What other types of performance do you particularly love to see / hear?
I love campfire bardics, Middle Eastern dance, Spanish guitar, and flamenco.  I also camp near the Chalk Man pub, so several nights each war I get to hear their house band (which keeps changing its name, but will always be Revelwood to me).  It’s glorious stuff!

What advice do you have for someone who wants to be a bard? 
Read a great deal, and listen to great poetry read aloud, both in its original language and in translation. Give yourself permission to write garbage. Caffeine for composition, preferably late at night. Sing along with the radio in your car, and be honest about what you can sing, and what you can’t. Don’t make yourself crazy when it comes to alternating stressed an unstressed syllables in iambic verse. Get the syllable count within one of your target (one syllable the more or one the less), speak it with confidence, and let in the innate iambic bounce of English to carry you through! It worked for Shakespeare. Also, fake being more drunk than you are; it helps.

Is there anything you want to add?
Yep.  In my opinion, a good SCA song is like a good punk song. Four verses, two minutes, two and a half tops. If people like it, you can do another one. If they don’t like it, they only have to tough it out for four verses!

Also, don’t be offended if everyone doesn’t immediately hush for your performance.  Sometimes they will, but not always. The Mandarin word for this background interaction that frames your performance is renao. Don’t get worked up over it.

A sample of Morien’s poetry:

The Silver Stag
(heroic couplets in the manner of Chaucer’s Prologue to the Canterbury Tales, written for the Siege of Glengary)

Æthelmearc’s colours blaze from ev’ry hill,
But still her children travel with a will,
To seek a beast of glory and of grace;
No noble heart can curb from such a chase,
But warlike hunters range for worthy prey,
That never blade nor bow can hope to slay,
But thrives amidst the fury of the lists,
And renders flanks as white as any mists
That deeds of merit may thereon by writ,
And feeds alone all those who seek for it
With courtesie, prowess, and fortitude.
In fatal field must man seek honor’s food;
No fox, no fowl, nor any course leman
Yields up such meat to feast the soul upon.
This creature does the soldier sore entice,
And make of Æthelmearc a Paradise.
One realm alone can such a glory own,
It’s Sylvan Glen our Silver Stag calls home.


Categories: SCA news sites

Heirs for Ealdormere

East Kingdom Gazette - Sun, 2015-05-24 09:55

From our compatriots at the Ealdormere Gazette

Wassail to Their Highnesses Ealdormere Today, Tormot Quilliam won Crown Tourney to make Damhnail Galbraith Princess of the northlands.
Filed under: Tidings, Uncategorized Tagged: Kingdom of Ealdormere

On Target: Making Cheap Archery Butts

AEthelmearc Gazette - Sat, 2015-05-23 19:14

THL Deryk Archer. Photo by Lady Katherine Tantzel.

Welcome to the second installment of THLord Deryk Archer’s column on making archery targets.

One of the issues beginning archers face is acquiring appropriate butts, which are the backing behind most targets. A professional-style Saunders mat can cost over $100 dollars, and may not be easily available lately as the factory has stopped making them. But there are less expensive alternatives!

This time I want to show you how to make a cheap archery butt. You will need:

  • 2 large cardboard boxes
  • 2 smaller cardboard boxes
    • Flat-screen TV boxes are ideal. You can get one “dumpster diving” at stores like WalMart or Taget; often they are happy to let you take their cardboard since it’s less trash for them. Look for ones that have hard Styrofoam inside, as that will help fill the target with additional padding.
  • A plastic political sign leftover after election day, or additional cardboard
  • Packing tape or duct tape

Open one of the large boxes, then cut the second large box into panels sized to fit inside the first large box and slide them inside the first box.


You can clean up your streets by gathering plastic “Vote for Tom” signs left over after election day. Cut the sign to size and slide it inside the first box alongside the sheet cut from the second box.

Next, cut the other small box in half and put the two pieces in sideways, making a “T” matrix or lattice. This will brace the sheets of cardboard and plastic you put in front of them.

Break up the foam from the TV boxes and use it as filler in the cavities formed by the small TV box.

Tape the box closed, add a target face, and you’re ready to go.

This makes a cheap archery butt for the beginner who doesn’t have a lot of cash. In addition, if you are doing a walking range, the box is light-weight and easy to carry compared to a traditional straw mat.

You can tie your butt to the ground or hang it from a tree.

After this butt is shredded by arrows, you can reuse its cardboard and styrofoam as filler for your next target.

I would love to hear from other archers, so please feel free to contact me on Facebook at Til next time, shoot safe, shoot often.


All photos not otherwise marked are by THL Deryk.

Categories: SCA news sites

Event Report: Æthelmearc War Practice XXVI, Canton of Steltonwald, May 14-17, A.S. 50

AEthelmearc Gazette - Fri, 2015-05-22 08:21

Mistress Arianna of Wynthrope reports on the multitude of goings-on that took place at Æthelmearc War Practice.

This year’s Æthelmearc War Practice, hosted by the Canton of Steltonwald on May 14 – 17, was slightly dryer and much warmer than last year, leading to good fighting and fun. As always, the event was packed with both martial and peaceful activities.

Heavy Fighting

Lord Christian Goldenlok vs. Sir Óláfr Þorvarðarson. Photo by Lady Àine ny Allane.

Heavy combat kicked off Friday with the Gage Meet ‘n’ Beat, which saw participants testing their mettle against the members of the Kingdom’s Grant level award for fighting. The weather was warm but pleasant and fighters enjoyed the opportunity to learn from some of the best unbelted fighters in the Kingdom.

On Saturday morning, the 10-man unbelted melee tournament had six teams fight a round-robin competition that was won by members of the household of Woodland Watch, who were undefeated. Afterward, Woodland Watch’s 10-man team fought a melee against the Chivalry.

Video courtesy of Baron Richard Larmer 

Later there were bridge battles and open field battles with the Kingdom Warlord, Sir Steffan Ulfkellson, devising training scenarios for the fighters. About 150-175 fighters participated in the day’s combat, which ended with pickup fights just before the afternoon rainstorm hit.

Photo by Lady Àine.

On Sunday morning a group of about 20 fighters braved the rain to compete in the Kingdom Rattan Champion’s Tourney. Once two simultaneous round robin tournaments were done, there were two semi-finalists from each list: Sir Thomas Byron of Haverford, Baron Vladisla Nikulich, THLord Tegrinus de Rhina, and Sir Ariella of Thornbury. After defeating Baron Vlad, Sir Byron ended up facing his wife, Sir Ariella, in the finals, since she had bested Lord Tegrinus. This led to much amusement by the populace, including a few slightly ribald jokes, but the finals were fiercely fought.

Video by Mistress Arianna of Wynthrope 

Sir Byron ended up the winner and was proclaimed Kingdom Champion, accepting the regalia from the outgoing Champion, Sir Arnthor, who had been knighted the previous morning.


Friday night offered a rapier tournament called “There Can Be Only One.” This Highlander-themed tournament debuted at Ian’s Inn in the Shire of Ballachlagan two years ago. At War Practice, six teams of two fought a round-robin style tournament. As the sun faded over the hills, one team remained undefeated: Master Lodovick of Grays Inn and his cadet, Lord Jacob of Dunmore – but there could be only one! These two then had to fight each other in two out of three passes with the only killing blow being a cut to the neck. Master Lodovick won the tournament.

Saturday had roughly 40 fencers from four different kingdoms participate in various melee scenarios that were loosely based upon battles and skirmishes of the Great Pilgrimage, later to be known as the First Crusade. The warm up scenarios consisted of last man standing open field battles which represented the advancement to Constantinople and Emperor Alexius’ forces attempting to slow them down. This was then followed by a regicide battle where opposing forces had unlimited resurrections to attack and defend the unarmed “kings.” Later the Siege of Nicea, a dispute over the Orontes River, made for an interesting tower and bridge battle where the fencers attacked and defended bridges full of choke points and kill pockets.

Photo by Zyla of Sebastion’s Place.

After lunch, the fencers reconvened with some capture the flag scenarios. After six hours of rapier battles the fencers dropped with smiles on their faces. The marshal in charge, THLord AElric Ravenshaw, reports, “There were no major issues in calibration and all kingdoms involved celebrated with great camaraderie.”

Many fencers also attended the vigil for Don Orlando di Bene del Vinta, where he “Played the Prize” for his Master of Defense.

Another item of note on the rapier field: Lord Durante de Caravaggio challenged Don Mark le Gabler for the Sylvan Iron Ring and won the fight along with possession of the ring. The Iron Ring passes from fencer to fencer; the current holder may be challenged by another fencer at any time, and if he or she loses, the ring passes to the winner. Don Mark held the ring from July of A.S. 49 until Lord Durante won it from him this past weekend. The Iron Ring Challenge was created in 2006; you can see a list of the holders here.

Youth Fighting

The Kingdom Youth Champion’s tournament drew a dozen enthusiastic and energetic fighters ranging in age from 6 to 14. Thanks to King Timothy, the youth fighters had the honor of fighting within the same list barriers as had been used at Crown Tournament two weeks earlier. The youth fighters were the second group to ever use these new list railings and flags, which were made by members of the Shire of Hartstone as a gift to the Kingdom.

His Majesty addresses the youth fighters before the tourney. Photo by Mistress Arianna.

After round robin tournaments for division 1 and divisions 2 and 3 combined were completed, the finalists were Ian and Henry in the division 1 list and El Tigre and Ulf in the division 2/3 list. The finals were fought best two of three, with Henry and Ulf proving victorious.

Ian vs. Henry in the Division 1 Finals, which were won by Henry. Photo by Arianna.

El Tigre fighting Ulf in the Division 2/3 finals, which were won by Ulf. Photo by Arianna.

After the tournament, Her Majesty Queen Gabrielle gave each fighter a token, and recognized El Tigre for his chivalry with a ring from her finger, while the marshal in charge, Mistress Arianna of Wynthrope, bestowed her token for chivalry on Aodhan. All of the populace observing the tournament marveled at the courtesy and camaraderie of the youth list. Youth fighting was capped with melees that included throwing axes and javelins.

Mistress Arianna wishes to thank all of the marshals and MoLs who assisted with the youth tournament: Sir Thorgrim, Lord Peregrine, Lady Ceindrech, Lord Aodhan, Lord Weasel, Lord Brillo, THLady Zoe, Baroness Elizabeth, and Baron Rodrigo, as well as the list runners, Lady Ida and the young girl whose name was, alas, not recorded.

Thrown Weapons

Photo by Lady Valentina.

Thrown weapons marshal Lord Aidan Gunn reports that the thrown weapons range was pretty laid back this year, with about 20 to 25 throwers over the course of the event, of which 8 were new people who came to the range for the first time. There were 2 spear targets and 7 wood butts available for throwers. One of the wood targets met its demise at the edge of a heavy axe, cracking down the middle with the first throw and finally splitting in half.

Lord Aidan wishes to thank Lord Haldor Bildrr, Lord Robert Bakere, Master Charles of Alden, and Leo and Collin from the East Kingdom for their help on the range.


The Archery range, run by Maistir Brandubh O Donghaile, offered several challenges at which the winners got their choice from the cooler of delicious things. The range was open Thursday afternoon and all day Friday and Saturday.

Photo by Master Alaxandair.

Around 80 archers participated across the weekend. The afternoon rains did scare many archers away, but youth archer Bijon of Sylvan Glen stayed through the rain to complete his challenge for the opportunity to raid the goody box.  The grass was short but still ate up arrows, so many sad archers left the range with quivers much lighter than when they arrived.

Arts & Sciences

The event also featured over 40 classes on topics as diverse as fiber arts, blacksmithing, music, illumination, costuming, and equestrian arts. Some of the more interesting class titles included “Poisons! Assassins!,” “So You Think You’re Japanese in Court,” and “20 Songs That Should Be in Your Bard Book.”

On Saturday afternoon, numerous gentles displayed their creations in the Great Hall, including the entries shown below. Those who could do so stayed to educate the populace on their arts; perhaps the most interesting was THLord Ambros Kyrielle, who taught those stopping by his display how to draw the labyrinths that he famously creates in chalk all over the pavement of Cooper’s Lake at Pennsic.

Armor by Lord Enzo de Pazzi. Photo by Master Fridrikr Tomasson av Knusslig Hamn.

Loom by Lady Alfrun ketta. Photo by Master Fridrikr.

Lady Edana the Red’s metal casting. Photo by Master Fridrikr.

County scroll for HRH Magnus Tindal by THLady Ismay Ponde. Photo by Master Fridrikr.

Embroidered slippers by Mistress Gillian Llewellyn. Photo by Master Fridrikr.

Ceramic tiles made by Lord Ian Campbell. Photo by Master Fridrikr.

Lord Otto Boese’ leatherworking. Photo by Master Fridrikr.


In a short court Friday evening, King Timothy and Queen Gabrielle sent Baron Robert of Sugargrove on vigil for the Laurel and THLord Arnthor inn Sterki on vigil for Knighthood.

Saturday began with a brief morning court where Don Orlando di Bene del Vinta was sent to “Play the Prize” for his Master of Defense, while Their Majesties bestowed Æthelmearc’s fourth Writ for the Order of Defense upon the Kingdom’s Rapier Marshal, Baron Benedict Fergus atte Mede.

As the final piece of business at morning court, THL Arnthor was knighted on the field to the acclaim of the populace.

King Timothy dubs Sir Arnthor. Photo by Lady Àine.

At Saturday evening court, Their Majesties welcomed Brennan, the newly invested Crown Prince of the East, who presented gifts to the King and Queen. Prince Brennan also warmly greeted Prince Tindal, as they had become friends during their last reigns. Their Majesties bestowed Golden Alces and Sycamores on numerous deserving gentles, and invested Their new Youth Combat Champions, Henry and Ulf, thanking Their outgoing Champions, Stephen and Otto, for their service.

Henry and Ulf are invested as Youth Champions. Photo by Master Alaxandair O’Conchobhair.

Baron Robert of Sugargrove was elevated to the Order of the Laurel for his skill in woodworking, making the Kingdom thrones, and Don Orlando di Bene del Vinta was inducted as Æthelmearc’s second member of the Order of Defense.

Baron Robert of Sugargrove is made a Laurel. Photo by Lady Valentina.

Don Orlando is made Æthelmearc’s second Master of Defense. Photo by THLady Sophie Davenport.

The surprise of the night was when Their Majesties called forward Mistress Cunen Beornhelm and presented her with a Writ of Summons to the Chivalry, which his Majesty remarked that he had wanted to do for many years. Once elevated, Mistress Cunen will become Æthelmearc’s third female knight.

Mistress Cunen Beornhelm receives a Writ for the Chivalry. Photo by Master Alaxandair.

After Kingdom Court, the Baron and Baroness of the Debatable Lands, Liam and Constance, held a brief baronial court where they inducted several deserving gentles into baronial orders, and then announced to their populace’s sadness that they will be stepping down as Baron and Baroness next winter. The baronial election process will begin with nominations in June.

Event Wrap-up

As always, Sunday featured the Pick-a-Prize Raffle run by House Tuatha Fieran with proceeds to benefit the kingdom, and breakfast was served both Saturday and Sunday mornings in the Great Hall by members of the Shire of Gryffyn’s Keep.

Sunday morning’s rain gave way to sun so event-goers were able to pack their tents in reasonable comfort, happy to have experienced a fun event courtesy of the Autocrat, Lady Cionaodh Gunn, and her enormous staff of volunteers.

This report was compiled with assistance from a great many people, including THLord AElric Ravenshaw, Maistir Brandubh O Donnghaile, Master Fridrikr av Knusslig Hamn, Lord Aidan Gunn, and all of the photographers credited above.

Categories: SCA news sites

Retainers for Their Highnesses

AEthelmearc Gazette - Thu, 2015-05-21 18:47

photo by Steffan Wolfgang von Ravensburg

Greetings Æthelmearc from Meisterin Felicity.

I am looking to create a list of people interested in retaining for Their Royal Highnesses, Tindal and Etain, over the course of their tenure. I welcome experienced retainers, as well those who would like to learn what this is all about. I am happy to train! Also, if you can’t commit to long term assistance but see that TRH are traveling to an event in your area and can help, please contact me as well.

On behalf of The Heirs to The Sylvan Throne, I thank you.

Felicity, writ in Delftwood.

Categories: SCA news sites

Presentation of the Mortuary Roll

East Kingdom Gazette - Wed, 2015-05-20 18:59

photo by Lord Calin MacSalny

The following article was graciously written by Lord Gundormr Dengir.

At their decoronation, we presented Edward (III) and Thyra (II) with a scroll, commemorating their reign and bemoaning its end, however timely.  As described in a previous article, this was done in the form of a Mortuary Roll.  These were sent upon the death of an Abbot, Prioress or other high-ranking member of a religious community to other, related foundations. The roll began with an obituary for the deceased and then, upon arrival, each house added a short prayer called a Titulus. When it had completed its travels the roll, perhaps with more than 100 inscribed tituli, returned to its source to be kept in the archives.  Our roll  project was organized by Gun∂ormr Dengir and Eleanor Catlyng, with contributing calligraphers including Andreiko Eferiev, Kayleigh McWhyte, Lada Monguligan, Eowyn Eilonwy of Alewife Brook and Reijnier Verplanck.

The first membrane contains a poetic obituary to each monarch (written by Aildreda de Tamworthe and Steffan ap Cenydd), done in the style of the 10th century Planctus for William Longsword, a memorial poem to a slain Duke.  Each poem consists of six stanzas which end with the plaintive refrain, Heu nobis umbratis — Alas for us in shadow.  The poems are illuminated with 2 panels (painted by Aaradyn Ghyoot and Eva Woodrose) where the end of the reign is foretold with evil signs and portents, including a flaming pineapple streaking across the heavens.  Below, the whole population from the lowly to the mighty hedgehogs and noble flamingos, lament the end of the reign.   These were done in the style of one of the most impressively decorated of the surviving medieval mortuary rolls, BL MS Egerton MS 2849, the mortuary roll of Lucy of Hedingham (✝1230).

The remaining membranes contain all the tituli — titles.  In these brief formulas each local group promises to remember the departed royalty and asks that we recall their members as we remember Edward and Thyra.  The period text, which asked us to pray for the souls of the departed, was rewritten (Latin assistance by Rahel Carolingiæ and Steffan) so that we are implored to remember them for their deeds, wisdom or fame.  Baronies, Shires, Principalities, and Cantons, as well as individuals from across the East, contributed the names of their members, as did Kingdoms as far afield as the West and Drachenwald.

The entire scroll has been digitized and has been annotated with translation and scribal attribution.  Within the tituli, period practice was to simply give the first name of the person with their title following, if any.  We followed that format for the actual scroll, though in the digitized version we’ve also included the full names of all those commemorated in the text.

Duchess Thyra intends to display the Roll at upcoming events.  While it may be some time before we are ready to undertake another similar project, we hope that others might be inspired to take part in it in the future.   If you would like to learn more about the project or become involved in a future effort, please feel free to contact us: Eleanor, Gun∂ormr, or Thyra.  While many deserving subjects were honored through this project, we know that there are many more who could have been so recognized.  We would also be happy to begin collecting additional names towards that end as well.  

Filed under: Arts and Sciences, Court Tagged: a&s

A Knight on Vigil

AEthelmearc Gazette - Wed, 2015-05-20 11:48

Sir Finnvarr de Taahe has published a new e-book on Amazon titled “A Knight on Vigil”.

From the Amazon blurb: “What does it mean to style oneself a knight in these modern times? Why do so many organizations bestow this warrior’s title on their best members? Why is the symbolism of knighthood so attractive? Finnvarr de Taahe, who has borne the rank of knight among medieval re-creationists for over four decades, has pondered long and hard on these questions. In this volume he offers his thoughts on why people want to be knights, on chivalry and the virtues, and on courtly love. This volume will be of interest to anyone who wishes to understand the mindset of the medieval knight and use it as a guide to excellence.”

The Gazette asked Sir Finnvarr why he wrote the book.

“At the last Pennsic war, I was standing in front of my camp talking to another Knight about the vigil that was being held elsewhere on the site. He said to me ‘it’s too bad there is no book you could give to the Knight on vigil’.

“The struck me as a very good idea. And I felt I had some qualifications to write such a book. I have been a Knight for over 40 years, and the scholar of chivalry in my academic role for about 20. (I am a Professor of medieval history.) And like most members of the SCA chivalry, I have thought long and hard about why and how I can call myself a Knight.

“One of the most interesting medieval books about chivalry is a series of questions without answers about what constitutes chivalric behavior. I took this as my inspiration. I thought that the Knight on vigil needed more than answers provided by somebody else: he or she needed some provocative questions to wrestle with before taking on his or her new role.

“I think I succeeded in asking some good questions and providing a certain amount of background on medieval chivalry to help the candidates come up with their own answers. Some of the issues I featured in the book were the different kinds of historical Knights, the relationship between prowess and courtliness, and between chivalry and love.

“This is not the first time I have written about chivalry in the SCA. Twenty years ago I wrote a book of chivalry, which I hope to reissue in the near future with a beautiful cover. Like the new book, it’s not just me talking about my ideas. The book of chivalry was the product of an online discussion on the Middle Kingdom email list of the time. I hope that some of the readers of the Knight on vigil will read the other one when it’s available, even if the recent creation of a new martial peerage means that it is now a historical document. It has the advantage of reflecting a large number of different points of view of society members at that time about chivalry and peerage at large.”

The book can be ordered here.

Categories: SCA news sites

Pennsic: Scheduling Activities on the Battlefield - Tue, 2015-05-19 13:12

From the Midrealm Gazette: Countess Joleicia of Litchfield, Pennsic 44 Battlefield Scheduler, reports that requests are now being taken for activities on the Pennsic 44 battlefield.

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Categories: SCA news sites

In Search of Fall Æcademy Hosts

AEthelmearc Gazette - Tue, 2015-05-19 13:10

Greetings unto the most talented and erudite Kingdom of Æthelmearc from Mistress Alicia Langland, Chancellor of the Æcademy!

Good Gentles,

Though spring has only just arrived, it is time to start thinking ahead to the fall.

 Fall Æthelmearc Æcademy is scheduled to be held in Region 2, which includes the following groups: Barony-Marche of Debatable Lands, Gryffyns Keep, Hunter’s Home, King’s Crossing, Riversedge, Silva Vulcani, Steltonwald, Stormsport, and Sunderoak.

The preferred date is November 14, 2015. Bids are due June 1, 2015. If you reside in Region 2, I hope your group will consider submitting a bid.

Please contact me ( if you would consider submitting a bid. If you have questions or need help with putting together your bid, please let me know; I will be delighted to assist!

Yours, in Service,

Categories: SCA news sites

Swords clash in AEthelmearc - Tue, 2015-05-19 09:00

The sounds of sword on metal armor and the twang of bowstrings were heard recently at a fighter practice at Highland Park along Washington Boulevard in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. Photographer Justin Merriman, of the Tribune-Review, caught some of the action. (photos)

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Categories: SCA news sites