East Kingdom Gazette

Syndicate content East Kingdom Gazette
Covering the Eastern Realm of the SCA
Updated: 9 min 49 sec ago

“Did you know?” Tir Mara

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

In Memoriam: Lord Ragnarr Dragonheart

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

How to Volunteer at an Event

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

King’s and Queen’s Bardic Competition Rules

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 <mheskridge@gmail.com>, 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

January Electronic Edition of Pikestaff Available to Subscribers

Sun, 2014-01-12 19:21

For those readers who have purchased a sustaining or international membership in the SCA, we would like to alert you that the electronic edition of the December issue of Pikestaff, the official newsletter of the East Kingdom, is available to download.

The January issue features a color cover provided by Lord Robert of Stonemarche.

Included are:

  • A notice that the Chronicler’s term of office is up in April, and discussion of the requirements for the office.
  • A call for bids to run Pennsic 45
  • A missive from Their Majesties Drachenwald
  • Notices from the Board of Directors regarding the Newcomers Portal and a job opening as Vice President for Information Technology
  • Reports of the courts of Kenric and Avelina at Baronial Investiture in the Barony of Smoking Rocks and Saint Eligius Celebration of the Arts and Sciences in the Barony of Dragonship Haven.
  • Curia will be held Sunday January 26 at the site of Market Day at Birka in the Barony of Stonemarche
  • Event announcements for the months of January, February, and early March, and upcoming Kingdom Events including King’s and Queen’s A&S Champions.

E-newsletters are available only to those who have purchased a sustaining  membership or an international membership.

Here’s a quick reminder about how to access the newsletters, if you have the appropriate membership. You’ll start by visiting the newsletter web site: http://enewsletter.sca.org

There you’ll be greeted with a login screen. You’ll need your membership number and password.  (The initial password is the word “start”, all lower case. It is recommended that you change the password to something more secure the first time you use the site.)

Once you’ve provided that you’ll see a screen with a list of all the publications available. You can access not only the Pikestaff, but the newsletters of all the Kingdoms, and the Board of Directors meeting minutes. Click on the name of the Kingdom or other publication you want, and on the next screen you’ll see all the
newsletters for that Kingdom, all the way back to the first electronic issues in March of 2012.

If you have trouble accessing the site, your next step should be to contact Membership Services to check the status of your membership. You can find all the contact information on the SCA web site: http://www.sca.org/members/MbrSvcsStaff.html They will be able to help you. The kingdom chronicler does not have the necessary access to do so.

Filed under: Official Notices Tagged: Pikestaff

Curia Announcement

Sun, 2014-01-12 14:21

By instruction of Their Majesties, the agenda for Their upcoming Curia has been amended (new items 4.3, 4.4, and 4.5); the revised agenda is now available on the East Kingdom Seneschal’s web site:
(We recommend using the Seneschal’s Curia page as the link, rather than linking through directly to the agenda pdf, because there’s a sidebar on the Curia page discussing the purpose of the Curia and who has speaking privileges, which is useful information to gentles who haven’t previously attended.)

The Curia will be held the day after Birka, in the Barony of Stonemarche:
Sunday, 26 January 2014, 10:00am
Stark Room, Radisson Hotel Manchester

Questions may be directed to lawclerk@eastkingdom.org .

in service,
Edith Steyning
Clerk of Laws

Filed under: Law and Policy

East Kingdom MOL Seeks a Deputy Database Administrator

Fri, 2014-01-10 13:10

Greetings to all MOLs and Marshals,

I am now seeking applications for the position of Deputy Database Administrator for the East Kingdom Minister of Lists.
This volunteer position involves learning to maintain and update the heavy combat and fencing databases for the East Kingdom so that eventually you may take over the position of Database Administrator. The deputy position answers to the current Database Administrator and the Kingdom MOL. Reliable internet and email access is required with the understanding that emails be answered within a 24 hour period.
All applicants should have advanced knowledge of Microsoft Excel along with coding and formula usage.

The deputy database administrator position is open to all members of the East Kingdom, not just marshals and MOLs.

Please send both Mundane and SCA resumes to Lady Sabina Luttrell.

Filed under: Fencing, Heavy List, Official Notices, Uncategorized

New Ars Scientia Orientalis now available

Thu, 2014-01-09 11:09

The Winter 2014 edition of Ars Scientia Orientalis, the quarterly Arts & Sciences publication for the East Kingdom is now available at http://aso.eastkingdom.org/issues/aso7.pdf.

This issue of ASO features:

Dolls in the 12th through 16th Centuries by Lady Lillian atte Valeye
My Experiences with the Preparation of a Tudor Banquette by Lady Ailionora inghean Ronain
16th-Century Monochrome Embroidery by Mistress Amy Webb, OL
The Aces, Book 1: The Kinds of Games At Which People Play by Justin DuCoeur (“Ace”)

Back issues can be found at the Ars Scientia Orientalis website (http://aso.eastkingdom.org)

Filed under: Arts and Sciences Tagged: a&s

In Memoriam: Don Edmund the Lame

Wed, 2014-01-08 13:44

Don Edmund at Pennsic XXXIX – photo courtesy of Mistress Vienna de la Mer

It is with great sadness that the Gazette reports on the passing of Don Edmund the Lame. He passed away on the afternoon of January 5, 2014, after a battle with cancer.
Don Edmund was active for many years in the Society, across multiple continents and Kingdoms.  He was instrumental in starting rapier activities in Lochac, and continued his efforts in that area across the West and into An Tir, holding fencing awards from all three kingdoms, and service awards from two of them. He was recognized in the Kingdom of Lochac with the Order of the Rapier and the Silver Tear. He received a Grant of Arms, was recognized as an Ancient Guildmaster of Fence, and received the Leaf of Merit from the Kingdom of the West. He was inducted into the Order of the White Scarf in the Kingdom of An Tir.

Don Edmund on the fencing field. Photo by Noelle de la Plume

He was a common sight on the rapier field at Pennsic. He was known widely for his use of a two-handed sword of prodigious size, and was a member of House Bloodguard, regularly fighting in their colors. On hearing the news of Edmund’s passing, Duke Andreas Eisfalke Von Ulm, Hochmeister of House Bloodguard, had the following to say:

“Yesterday I lost a friend and household brother but only for a moment. Paul and I met at 30 Year Celebration in Oregon. The day we met we were instantly friends. We both shared the same sense of humor and he taught me much of hoop snakes and drop bears. From that day on we were as thick as thieves and although we lived far apart our brotherhood made us feel like he was right next door. Paul is gone from this realm and I will miss him for the moment. But just like 30 Year, I imagine that when I pass; I will be greeted by his big smile and he will say something like ‘What took you so long, Mate?’ I have something to look forward to when it is my time to depart. Find us a good place to eat when I get there.”

He was also well known for his courtesy, willingness to help, and his friendliness despite his ongoing insistence that he was a grump.  Master Liam St. Liam said of Don Edmund “What always struck me about him was he’d see a friend, and that smile would light up and you’d be convinced he thought seeing you was the best thing that ever happened.”

In 2009 Don Edmund became an apprentice to Baroness Juliana von Altenfeld, OL, OP. According to Baroness Juliana, “It was his intention, if he became a laurel, to become the ‘Offal Laurel’. This combined both his ambition, and his love of bad jokes.” She went on to describe how, despite his many other accomplishments, he often introduced himself as her cooking apprentice, he was that pleased to be learning something new.

East Kingdom Seneshal Mistress Mercedes Vera de Calafia echoed the sentiments shared by many hearts when she said “I wish I had sufficient words to express my sadness at the loss of Don Edmund the Lame. I’ve been fortunate enough to talk and laugh and fight with him. The world is just a little dimmer without his smile to light it.”

At Don Edmund’s request there will be a memorial service for him at this year’s Pennsic War. In addition a service is planned at Gulf Wars to accommodate the many friends who cannot attend Pennsic. Dates and times for these memorials are still being determined.

Edited to correct inaccurate information. The original article incorrectly referred to An Tir as a Principality and had the date of Don Edmund’s passing incorrectly as January 4th.

Those wishing to express their condolences directly to Don Edmund’s family may contact Baroness Juliana who will put you in touch with them.

Filed under: Tidings Tagged: obituary

New Incipient Shire Announced

Mon, 2014-01-06 23:27

The incipient Shire of Archers Ford (Berks County, PA) was announced at the Royal Court at Twelfth Night in the Shire of Angelspur. According to East Kingdom Seneschal Mercedes Vera de Calafia, Archers Ford is located in the southern region with Eisental to the north, Silver Rylle to the west and Hartshorn-dale to the East. The seneschal of the new group is Lord Alexander Makcristyne.

Filed under: Official Notices Tagged: incipient, royal court

Kings & Queens Bardic Champions Scheduled for March 8

Mon, 2014-01-06 19:06

Royal Bardic Champions will take place at Novice Schola in the Barony of Bergental on March 8.  This event is traditionally for newcomers to learn about life in the Society, and thus there is no site fee required.  Donations to defray the site cost are gratefully accepted.

The event will take place at the Bethesda Lutheran Church in Springfield, MA.  Their Excellencies Bergental will be cooking a dayboard, which will be a separate fee still to be determined.  Instead of a feast, they will be taking names for reservations at the Munich Haus Restaurant in Chicopee.

For further information, contact Sir Cedric of Armorica.

Filed under: Events Tagged: bardic champions, Bergental, Kings and Queens Champions

Recommendation Deadline Approaching

Mon, 2014-01-06 18:25

His Royal Highness Prince Brennan wishes to make it known that recommendations to be considered for Their Highnesses’ first polling must be submitted by prior to Friday, January 10th.

Any recommendations received after that will be considered for Their second polling.

Filed under: Official Notices Tagged: deadlines, pollings

A Call for Bids for Pennsic 45 Mayor

Sun, 2014-01-05 18:53

So, you want to be the Pennsic Mayor?  Bids for Pennsic 45 (2016) will be accepted until 1 May 2014.  Please see the details of the bid process on the Documents page of the East Kingdom Seneschal’s Website.  All interested parties are encouraged to thoroughly read all of the pages linked from the box on that page.

Bid packets are to be copied to the Seneschals of the Kingdoms of Aethelmearc, the East, and the Middle, as well as the East Kingdom Crown and Coronet.

Filed under: Pennsic Tagged: Pennsic, seneschal

Missive from Brigantia Principal Herald

Sat, 2014-01-04 16:08

To the populace of the East Kingdom, Greetings.

Here on the eve of 12th Night, as I complete my first year as Brigantia Principal Herald, I needed to thank a bunch of people.

First and foremost, I MUST extend my personal thanks to all the members of the East Kingdom’s College of Heralds for their support and hard work over the last year. In all the Known World the East’s College leads the way in research, in performance, and in hard work. In 2013 the east processed FIVE HUNDRED AND EIGHTY FIVE submissions. That is the most of ANY KINGDOM IN THE SCA! Caid, in second place, processed 419. The East was responsible for fourteen percent of ALL submissions processed across the entire SCA.

This mountain of work could not have been completed without the support and incredible work of the members of the Brigantia Principal Heraldic Staff. Mistress Lyanna, Lord Conogan, Mistress Alys, Lord Joscelyn, Lady Lillia, Baroness Treannah, Duchess Katherine, Lord Yehuda, Lady Mari, Duchess Anna, Lord Lorenz, Baron Mael Eoin, Baron Rowen, and Baroness Lisl, my infinite thanks to you all for stepping up and keeping the machine running.

I wanted to thank His Grace Edward and Her Excellency Þora for their support and decision to appoint me to this position. I also thank them for their patience with me when I had to take over as their Vox Regis for a while. It was an adventure serving you both as Vox and as Brigantia.

I want to thank Their Graces Gregor and Kiena for affording me the honor of being the East Kingdom’s War Herald for Pennsic 42. It was an experience I will never forget and the lessons learned in that week I will use to serve the Kingdom even better this coming Pennsic. It was fun getting to know you both better and I hope the horses are well sheltered on this cold and snowy day.

I want to thank King Kenric and Queen Avelina for their continued support. It is always interesting dealing with prior Brigantia, and is doubly interesting dealing with former Brigantia who are King and Queen.

I wanted to thank Prince Brennan and Princess Caoilfhionn for their confirmation of my position as the East Kingdom’s War Herald for Pennsic 43. I know we’re going to have a ton of fun.

Lastly I want to thank Mistress Alys, Baroness Treannah, and Baron Rowen for taking up the mantle of Vox Regis for this past year’s reigns. Thanks to each one of you for doing all the hard work of making every court look seamless. It’s always a pleasure to watch any of you three run Courts.

So,lets get Year two underway,

Master Ryan Mac Whyte
Brigantia Principal Herald of the Kingdom of the East
Intendo ad Pravis.

Filed under: Official Notices

How Web Pollings and Recommendations Work

Fri, 2014-01-03 10:00

As a follow up to Her Majesty Avelina’s article on the awards process, Raffaella, the EK Web Minister, has shared some information about how web pollings and recommendations work behind the scenes.


Recommendations are submitted via an online recommendation form.  When a recommendation is submitted, the “Thank You” page is a confirmation that the submission has been received, and my e-mail contact information is provided if you would like me to verify the submission.  If you have any concerns, questions, or inquiries, please contact me through that e-mail address, and I will respond to you within 24 hours.

Every two weeks, I generate a report to provide these recommendations to the crown, and then send that report for the royals.  The data is produced in an Excel document broken down into polling and non-polling orders.  The data is then sorted by award, other, gentle’s name, and the date the recommendation was sent in.

The recommendations that are then included in the pollings sent to the orders are at the discretion of the crown.  The crown may modify, shorten, or reformat a write-up before it is sent to the polling order.


Once the Royals provide the information, I build a web link survey for each polling order.  This tool for the polling order creates an ongoing record of individuals who have been recommended for an award and who may have been polled for an award.  Since the pollings have gone to web links for recommendations, the amount of respondents to the polls has jumped significantly.  The polling data and links are secure, and I am the only person with access to them.  I do not, under any circumstances, discuss the results of a polling or who was on a polling.  In addition, all polling links are not connected to any web search engines.

Individuals receive the link to the polling by being a registered member of their order(s).  If you are not receiving any emails from your polling order, contact the Web Minister and they will get the problem solved as soon as possible.  The polling link can be provided by the Polling Administrator (Duchess Katherine).

The web pollings also allow a participant to submit as many times as they want, if they would like to change or modify their recommendation.  The only recommendation that is recorded is the last recommendation.  Members of a polling order must provide a valid SCA name, mundane name, and e-mail address, which I cross check to verify that only one recommendation is counted for each participant.

The results of the polling are provided to the Royals (and only the Royals) whose polling it is, and it is at their discretion if the results are published to the orders.

If there are any other questions about recommendations or pollings, please contact Raffaella.

Filed under: Court Tagged: awards, pollings

How To Prepare Documentation

Wed, 2014-01-01 17:41

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

Here in the East Kingdom we are lucky enough to have several events each year that celebrate the skills of our artisans and scientists. Are you thinking about participating in an Arts & Sciences event but are wary of those two words in the announcement “documentation required”? Here are a few tips on how to prepare.

The best advice I can give you is this: don’t wait until your project is done to write the documentation. This will only cause you stress. Keep notes about books and articles you’ve read, websites you’ve visited, museum exhibits you’ve seen, or people you’ve spoken with. It is much easier to write something down when it happens than to try to remember it later. Even if you never enter a display or competition, you will thank yourself later as you continue to explore your chosen field.

Are you trying to recreate a period recipe, dance, or pigment? Keep track of your trials and errors. Experimentation is full of mistakes. It is how we learn. Use your documentation as a way to describe your process. Let someone else read your documentation before the day of the event. It’s a great way to be sure your explanations are clear and complete.

Finally, it’s time to prepare for the event. Like any good story, there are six questions you should consider as you put your documentation together.

What is your project? Is there a particular period piece that was your inspiration? Include a photo. Where is it from? When does it date from? How was the piece made in period?

You’ve chosen an approach for your project. Why did you make the choices you made? Did you recreate it with period methods and materials? What challenges did this pose? If you made a change or substitution, be sure to explain why. Are you using a period technique to create a unique item rather than a reproduction? Explain how you went about it. Show the judges your critical thinking processes and how you are putting your research into practice.

Lastly, who are the sources for your information? Did you base your project on a particular artifact that you saw in a museum? Did you reference a period source from a library? Did you read a book that gives directions for the technique you used, or one that describes the qualities of similar period pieces? Including a bibliography helps the judges understand the basis of your knowledge.

And don’t forget that other who – you! Unless the competition rules say that it will be blind judging, always put your name on your documentation. People want to know who you are.

Sometimes we are interested in something where period sources do not exist. An artifact verifies that something was done in period, but we have no record of how it was done. The only way to understand the artifact is to experiment. This is in the best medieval and renaissance tradition of scientific experimentation to understand the world. In this case your documentation should clearly describe your experimental process. What is your hypothesis? What question are you trying to answer? What technique or item are you trying to reproduce? What method did you use to test your hypothesis or answer your question? What were the results? Were you successful? If not, how did you modify your method to improve on the results? Can you repeat the test and get the same results? What did you learn? Photos can be very useful. Also consider separating any data tables from your descriptive documentation when that makes it easier for people to understand your process.

When possible, keep your documentation concise. Two to four pages are often enough to get your important points across. Judges will have many projects to review that day. If you feel your documentation needs to be longer, include a summary at the beginning, or consider submitting a research paper. Remember that you may know more than your judges. While the event organizers will make every effort to have judges who know about your interest, it isn’t always possible. Don’t leave something out because you think “everyone” knows it. They may not. Consider your documentation as the jumping off point for a conversation about this thing that inspires you. Share your enthusiasm!

Filed under: Arts and Sciences Tagged: Documentation

Embroiderers’ Schola in February

Sun, 2013-12-29 21:03

The Shire of Quintavia and the Keepers of Athena’s Thimble will be holding an Embroiderers’ Schola on February 15. The event will be on a donation basis.  There will be a potluck day board, so attendees are encouraged to bring contributions of food or beverages.

There will be several tracks of classes, a display, and a Panel (where work can be evaluated for Guild rankings). All embroiderers are welcome, whether they have been embroidering for years or have just learned how to thread a needle. 

Teachers are being sought for classes in all techniques and experience levels. If you would like to teach, please contact the Guildmistress of Athena’s Thimble, Mistress Briony.

For more information about the event, please visit An Embroiderers’ Schola.

To learn more about the Guild, please visit the Keepers of Athena’s Thimble.

Filed under: Arts and Sciences, Events Tagged: Embroidery