East Kingdom Gazette

Syndicate content East Kingdom Gazette
Covering the Eastern Realm of the SCA
Updated: 1 hour 6 min ago

Open Positions: SCA, Inc. Corporate Treasurer and Society Exchequer

Mon, 2017-03-27 08:30
Below are two separate postings for open positions at Society. The first is a part-time, stipened position as Corporate Treasurer, the second is a volunteer position to be Society Exchequer, who reports to the Corporate Treasurer. Although the job postings are different, both have an application deadline of April 1st. SCA, Inc. Corporate Treasurer

The Board of Directors is accepting applications for the position of
Corporate Treasurer.  This is a part-time, stipend position, which
requires approximately 5-10 hours per week except when finalizing the
yearly budget.

Applicants must be available for at least the October quarterly Board
Discussion Session (typically held on Friday), in addition to the
October Board meeting (typically on Saturday).  Additional traveling may
be required.

Skills:
1)  Working knowledge of basic financial spreadsheet program (QuickBooks
or other);
2)  Experience with managing budgets and financial forecasting,
including tracking and analyzing variances;
3)  Basic suite of office communication skills – spreadsheets,
presentations, Word, etc.
4)  Preference for degree in accounting or finance.

Duties of the Treasurer

Maintain knowledge of the organization and personal commitment to its
goals and objectives.

Work with the Society Exchequer, the Vice President for Corporate
Operations and the outside accountant to ensure all financial filings
are maintained.

Work with the Society Exchequer to ensure that our relationships with
third party financial vendors (i.e. banks) are maintained.

Understand financial accounting for nonprofit organizations.

Work with the President and the Vice President of Corporate Operations
to ensure that appropriate financial reports are made available to the
Board on a timely basis.

Prepare and present the annual budget to the Board of Directors.

Develop and maintain internal control policies, guidelines, and
procedures for activities such as budget administration.

Work with the Society Exchequer, President and the Vice President of
Corporate Operations to maintain and improve internal control policies,
guidelines and procedures for PayPal.

Analyze the financial details of past, present, and expected operations
in order to identify development opportunities and areas where
improvement is needed.

Evaluate needs for procurement of funds and investment of surpluses, and
make appropriate recommendations.

Ensure development and broad review of financial policies and
procedures.

Maintain current knowledge of organizational policies and procedures,
federal and state policies and directives, and current accounting
standards.

Interested applicants should send a letter of interest, together with
modern and SCA qualifications, via hardcopy to:

Renee Signorotti
Society for Creative Anachronism
PO Box 360789
Milpitas, CA  95036-0789

Courtesy copies should be provided via email to:

resumes@sca.org
treasurer@sca.org.

The deadline for applications is April 1, 2017.

Regards,

Therese Hofheins
Corporate Treasurer
Society For Creative Anachronism, Inc

Society Exchequer

The Society for Creative Anachronism (SCA) is seeking candidates for the
position of Society Exchequer. This position reports to the SCA
Corporate Treasurer.

Duties and responsibilities:
1. Track and review quarterly reports on Kingdom accounts
2. Review Financial Policies and submit to the Board for approval
3. Report quarterly to the Board and the Corporate Treasurer.
4. Conduct training of Kingdom Exchequers.
5. Maintain the various exchequer handbooks/manuals as scheduled.
6. Work with the Tax Specialist in maintaining exchequer reporting
forms.
7. Review and process requests to open or change bank accounts.
8. Monitor use of Paypal and the training by Paypal specialist.

Preferred Skills:
1. Moderate to expert MS Excel proficiency.
2. Moderate MS Word proficiency.
3. Good communication skills.
4. Previous experience as a Kingdom Exchequer required.
5. Bachelors degree in accounting preferred.

Prior experience as an exchequer in the SCA is required; prior Kingdom
Exchequer experience is highly desired. Working knowledge of SCA?s
accounting procedures is necessary. Individuals with accounting
backgrounds or training are highly desired. Dependable email access and
dependable phone access are required for this position.
The Society Exchequer receives a stipend for their services and will
receive a 1099 for tax purposes. Work load will vary but expect to put
in an average of 15 hours per week.
Interested applicants should send a letter of interest, together with
modern and SCA qualifications, via hardcopy to:

Renee Signorotti
Society for Creative Anachronism
PO Box 360789
Milpitas, CA 95036-0789

Courtesy copies should be provided via email to:

resumes@sca.org
treasurer@sca.org.

The deadline for applications is April 1, 2017.

Regards,

Therese Hofheins
Corporate Treasurer
Society For Creative Anachronism, Inc


Filed under: Corporate, Official Notices Tagged: Exchequer, job posting, SCA, sca inc, Society, volunteer

Her Grace Endures

Fri, 2017-03-24 10:00

Reign #1: Atenveldt 1986

Queen Anna Ophelia Holloway Tarragon is currently sitting her 10th reign as a Queen ( plus one reign as Princess of the then-Principality of Artemesia) in the SCA. According to the Royal Geneaology of the Known World, Her majesty has sat on the throne more times than any other Queen. She graciously agreed to grant the Gazette an interview about her extraordinary experience.

Reign #2: Atenveldt 1987

Over the course of 10 reigns, she has seen much change in the Society, especially in the technologies that we use to communicate with each other and in the amount of information available to us for documentation of the things we do.She’s also seen many geographic differences across the SCA, from the West where the King’s word is law, to here in the East where things are much more “democratic” and cooperative. Greater access to information has also lead to an increase in the seriousness of the game for many.

Reign #3: Atenveldt 1988

Faster communication and busier schedules have lead to a decrease in spontaneity in many aspects of the SCA, and yet much has remained the same. The passion that people have for whatever it is that they pursue in the society has always remained a constant that Her Majesty admires.  In addition, she adds “The look on someone’s face when you give them an award is still the same today as it was years ago”

Reign #4: Atenveldt 1989

Another constant over the years has been her perception of her role as Queen. Before allowing His Majesty Brion to fight for her in a Crown Tournament for the first time, she wisely asked him what he expected from her as Queen. One of the things he asked from her was for her to “Look and act like a Queen” and she has always tried to live up to the ideals of grace, courtesy, and comportment that define Queenliness.

Reign #5: Atenveldt 1991

No matter the Kingdom, people want their Queen to be someone who is kind and caring and holds genuine love in her heart for the people of her Kingdom. She knows from experience that people “will do anything for you if you honestly love them.“

Reign #6: Atenveldt 1994

One might imagine that it is difficult to find a fresh approach to each reign, having reigned as many times as Her Majesty has.  For Queen Anna, the new people that are involved with each reign keep her engaged and full of love for the role and the Kingdom. Her current Court include 10 people she had never met before she and His Majesty took the thrones for this current reign. Seeing the Society and the mechanics of running a Reign through their eyes, eyes that are still bright and shiny and full of wonder at this game we play, is something that fills Her Majesty’s own heart and eyes with love.

Reign #7: Atenveldt 1996

Another topic that lights up Her Majesty’s face, and something she describes as “one of the best parts of being a Queen” is seeing the look on people’s faces as you recognize them for their hard work by giving them an award.

Reign #8: East 1998

Having the privilege of creating moments for people is one of the most important and best part of being Queen for Anna. To those who would aspire to wear the crown some day Her Majesty would remind them that though it is a great job, a fun job, it is still a job, and it requires engagement seven days a week to support and sustain “the dream” for an entire kingdom. It’s not all “parties and prezzies and awards”

Reign #9: East 2006

One lesson that she has learned over the years is that “People are far more capable and willing to do things than you think they are…all you have to do is ask them nice… Just be kind.”

When asked what inspires her to keep returning to this role, she answers simply, and with a sincere, warm smile in her eyes: “My Duke…” later she would elaborate and say  “I am very grateful for the love and respect that Brion shows in me that he keeps doing this… that he keeps asking me to join him.”

Reign #10: East 2016


Filed under: History, Interviews Tagged: History, HRM Anna, Royal History, royals, royalty

Cannon Fire Warning Service at Pennsic Seeks Volunteers

Thu, 2017-03-23 18:14

Cannon fire to start and end the major battles at Pennsic is a long-standing and well loved tradition at Pennsic, but in recent years  concerns have been repeatedly raised that it is distressing to some of our military veterans who have post-traumatic stress disorder or related issues as a result of their service.

A compromise is being proposed, in which a warning would be broadcast to  gentles who request it shortly before the cannon fires so that they can be prepared for the sound rather than being startled by it.  The organizers are seeking volunteers to help implement the system at Pennsic this year.

In brief, the plan involves using a messaging application to deliver alerts in real time to people who sign up to receive them, either as email or as SMS (text) messages. One will be sent out very shortly before each round of cannon fire.

The volunteers are needed primarily to assist with the process of getting the phone numbers/emails entered into a database which the application will use to disseminate the alerts.

This information comes to us courtesy of the Aethelmearc Gazette. For more information read the complete article on their site: https://aethelmearcgazette.com/2017/03/22/whilst-the-cannons-fire-pennsic-and-ptsd/?iframe=true&theme_preview=true

It discusses both the application to be used, the process by which the organizers came to settle on this approach, and the motivations and experience of the organizers. It’s an eye-opening and graphic window into the effects of the cannon fire on people for whom explosions are a stress trigger.

If you wish to support the effort, contact information for the organizers can be found there as well.

 


Filed under: Pennsic Tagged: cannon, Pennsic

Unofficial Court Report – Gulf Wars

Wed, 2017-03-22 23:18

Thus it was that Their Majesties, Brion and Anna, did travel far, and attend the twenty-sixth Gulf Wars in the Kingdom of Gleann Abhann.

During their visit to such far lands, they did see fit to hold a court.

The following gentles were named to the Company of the Pennon of the East:

Duncan Kerr

Cristoff Gockerhan von Loch, called “Clockwork”

Tysha Z Kieva

Fortune St. Keyne

Æthelhawk Keyfinder

Siubhan Wallace

Bianca Anguissola

Elizabeth Elenore Lovell

His Highness Ioannes Aurelius Serpentius

Her Highness Ro Honig von Sommerfeldt

Samuel Peter DeBump, called “Speedbump”

Wynefryd Bredhers

Malcolm Bowman

Their Majesties Brion and Anna proceeded then to exchange with their cousins Roger and Zanobia, King and Queen of the West, many wonderful gifts.

Their Majesties called into their court Brannat Dub, called “Raven”.  They spoke of her long service to waterbearing and general fighter support, and named her a Baroness of their Court.

This closed the court of Their Majesties, Brion and Anna.

Other crowns in attendance did hold courts at Gulf Wars.  At the court of the Kingdom of the Middle, Their Majesties Edmund and Kateryn did call Elizabeth Elenore Lovell.  They spoke of her efforts on the rapier field, and awarded her a Dragon’s Tooth.

It has been my privilege to record the honors received by many who travelled such a long ways from home.

In service,

Malcolm Bowman, Brigantia Principal Herald


Filed under: Court Tagged: court report, Gulf Wars

New Awards Recommendation Form

Wed, 2017-03-22 23:05

A few days ago, Duchess Avelina made changes to the Awards Recommendation form to make the recommendation process more user friendly.

1) Users now have the option to print their submissions for their records. At the end of the survey, there is a link “Print Your Answers”. If the user clicks this link, a *.PDF will open. The user can then either print or save that file for their records. It was asked if we could have email notifications, but the software had some issues with that. This should give users the confirmation of submissions. It should be noted that, submission does not mean that the Royalty *will* take action. It is only confirmation that the recommendation was received.

2) In response to some loved ones of awards recipients not being notified, a field was added: “Does this candidate have a spouse/partner/other loved one that should be notified should the Royalty act on this recommendation?”

Any questions or concerns can be sent to web_pollingadmin@eastkingdom.org


Filed under: Announcements Tagged: awards

Announcing the 5th Annual Unoffical Pennsic Half Marathon!

Wed, 2017-03-22 22:47

Master Philip announces the 5th Annual Unoffical Pennsic Half Marathon! Will you join us? Princess Signy Heri of Atlantia and Countess Thora Heri of The Outlands started this fun run five years ago as a way to encourage fitness in a fun and challenging way.

Their inspiration for the race? If you can run 13.1 miles before the start of war week then you will be fully prepared to have as much fun as you want the rest of the war. You will have the stamina to enjoy all pick up fights, and bouts, and battles. Dance all you need. Shop at all the places. Walk all over Pennsic for all the parties. Rune Stone Hill would not even slow you down.

What’s the course look like?

The estimated 13-mile course (it is medievally inexact!) consists of three loops around the entire Pennsic campground, plus one smaller loop around the Serengeti. Runners meet in front of the old Chirurgeon’s Point (Services Area) at 8 am on Saturday August 5th. Thanks to Mistress Genoveva von Lübeck of the Middle we also have a course map for runners to review in advance. Check it out: halfmarathonmap2

Water is available from the Services Area (old Chirurgeon’s Point)…but runners are expected to supply their own water /sports drink/snack needs. We will pass the Services Area (old Chirurgeon’s Point) three times at roughly 4.5 mile intervals.

Are there pace requirements? Not at all! If 13.1 miles sounds like too much, that’s okay! Join us for one loop. Or even two! Everyone is welcome! Walkers also!

This is a group run, not a race. No times will be kept. The goal is fitness as part of the SCAdian lifestyle. All are welcome. Wearing medieval-style tunics instead of modern running clothes is encouraged.

Last year we had over 40 people start and do some amount of activity. And we amazingly had over 20 finishers!

Is there a medal? Of course there is a medal! Pictured is the Half Finishers Medal made in the style of a pilgrim’s badge by Mistress Serafina Alamanni from the Kingdom of Meridies. She is already in the planning stages of making the one for this year.

Now is a great time to start training. Here are some things to consider:

* Try to get outside and start getting adjusted to the heat. It will be hot!

* Get used to running in the sun! Wear sunscreen and consider a hat.

* Run some hills. We will be tackling a *lot* of hills.

* Don’t rely on a treadmill. Make sure you are getting used to running on the roads. It makes a difference.

Join the fun on Social Media too. We have a Facebook group under “Unofficial Pennsic Half Marathon”. Send a request and join!

We look forward to walking or running with you soon!


Filed under: Announcements, Pennsic Tagged: Pennsic

December 2016 Heraldry Decisions

Mon, 2017-03-20 13:33

The Society College of Heralds runs on monthly cycles and letters. Each month, the College processes name and armory submissions from all of the Kingdoms. Final decisions on submissions are made at the monthly meetings of the Pelican Queen of Arms (names) and the Wreath Queen of Arms (armory). Pelican and Wreath then write up their decisions in a Letter of Acceptances and Return (LoAR). After review and proofreading, LoARs generally are released two months after the meeting where the decisions are made.

An “acceptance” indicates that the item(s) listed are now registered with the Society. A “return” indicates that the item is returned to the submitter for additional work. Most items are registered without comments. Sometimes, the LoAR will address specific issues about the name or armory or will praise the submitter/herald on putting together a very nice historically accurate item.

The results from the December 2016 Wreath and Pelican meetings can be found here.

 


Filed under: Announcements, Heraldry

Crown Tournament Deadline Reminder

Sat, 2017-03-18 09:47

All combatants and consorts wishing to participate in the Crown Tournament of Ioannes and Honig are reminded that letters of intent are due in two weeks, by April 1.

Details of the submission process were previously published in the Gazette as follows:

On Submitting Crown Tourney Letters of Intent


Filed under: Announcements

Pennsic Singles Rapier Champs Tryouts Announcement

Sun, 2017-03-12 09:00

East Kingdom!

This year, similar to last year, I will be running a series of Pennsic Singles Rapier Champions Qualifier Tournaments. All of these will be single-pass, double-elimination, bring-your-best tournaments, to select the best rapier fighters in the East for our Champions team. The current plan is to re-fight double-kills once, and then have dead count as dead. Additionally, losses will be forgiven in the finals. These considerations may change or be elaborated upon, as the tournaments progress.

The events at which I currently plan to run these qualifiers are:

*Mudthaw (March 25)
Balfar’s Challenge (April 22)
War of the Roses (May 26-27)
Southern Region War Camp (June 10)
Northern Region War Camp (June 30-July 2)
*Great Northeast War (July 7-9)

For Mudthaw, I plan to run a singles tournament and additionally consider the results of the traditional Mudthaw cut-and-thrust tournament for Champs.

At GNE, I plan to run both a normal tournament and a Cut-and-Thrust tournament, because we will be less pressed for time.

This year, Rapier Singles Champs will be 17 fights, two of which will be cut-and-thrust. The East gets 8 of those fights, of which only four may be MoDs. Given that one of those fights goes to the King’s Champion (me) and another goes to the Queen’s Champion (Master Lottieri Malocchio), this leaves six slots, of which only three may be Masters of Defense.

This means that more than last year, winning does not necessarily guarantee a slot on the team. However, my choices for primaries and alternates will be strongly informed by the results of these tournaments. Good luck, and may the best, most courteous rapier fighters win!

His Highness, as many royals before him have done, has also asked that those who wish to be champions seek him out, in order to demonstrate to him their prowess.

Please feel free to forward this message to any local lists or other social media, in order to get the word out.

In service,
Don Lupold Hass,
Pennsic Rapier Champions Coordinator,
King’s Rapier Champion of the East,
OGR


Filed under: Pennsic, Rapier

Mudthaw Announcement

Sat, 2017-03-11 10:10

The schedule for Mudthaw had changed significantly from what was originally published in the event announcement. Due to all the wonderful things happening at Mudthaw the morning is quite hectic and, in particular, Marshal Activities will be starting earlier than is traditional for this event.

We strongly recommend Pre-registering (you have until 3/15/17 to do so) if you will be participating in either Heavy Weapons or Rapier combat, since this will allow you to process through Gate much more quickly.

If pre-registering isn’t possible for someone participating in those activities, we would then encourage them to arrive early. Gate will open at 9:30 am in order to help facilitate getting fighters and fencers to the field on time.

Mudthaw Schedule
9:00 – Merchant setup
9:30 – Site Opens
10:00 – Merchants Open – Merchant Row – Side hall
10:15 – OGR meeting – Corner Table, Main hall
10:30 – A&S Entries Open – Main hall
11:00 – Morning Royal Court – Main hall
11:30 – Artisans’ Village Opens – Main hall
11:30 – Armored Combat Tournament begins – outside/back parking lot
11:30 – Cut & Thrust Tournament – outside/back parking lot
12:30 – Athena’s Thimble – Corner Table, Main hall
12 noon – Youth combat starts – outside/back parking lot
12:15 – Heavy Rapier/Pennsic Champs Qualifier – outside/back parking lot
12:30 – A&S Competition Begins – Main hall
2:00 – Pennsic Rapier Melee Qualifier – outside/back parking lot
2:30 – Artisans’ Village Closes
2:30 – A&S Judging Closes (please pick up your entries)
3:30 – All Marshal Activities End
3:30 – Main Hall Reset for Court
4:00 – Baronial Court & Baronial Investiture – Main hall
4:30 – Evening Royal Court – Main hall
5:00 – Merchants Close
6:30 – Main Hall Reset for Feast
7:00 – Feast – Main hall
9:00 – Feast Ends
9:30 – Site Closes

** Please Note: Their Majesties will be holding a half-hour Afternoon Royal Court, outside by the List Fields, sometime mid-afternoon. **

Baroness Treannah, Mudthaw Co-Autocrat


Filed under: Announcements, Events

Post-Contest Comment Analysis of K&Qs A&S Champs Competition 2017

Fri, 2017-03-10 17:11

The Gazette thanks Mistress Bronwen Rose of Greyling for this thoughtful article. 

This article discusses commentary from this year’s King’s and Queen’s Arts and Sciences Championships, where twenty-seven bold A&S entrants brought their A-game to the Barony of Concordia in February. (K&Q’s Bardic Championships were held concurrently but are not discussed here.) When looking to improve any repeating event, some thoughtful post-event contemplation and information-sharing is helpful. As a part of that post-contest analysis, here is a summary of written judges’ comments that may be helpful to future K&Q’s A&S competitors and judges.

This year’s contest featured face-to-face judging using score sheets that can be found at http://www.kqchamps.org/a-s-competition/judging-as under General Rubric and Research Paper Rubric. The contest format, organization, and scoring were developed by the Kingdom Champions, Mistress Lissa Underhill and Master Magnus hvalmagi, who built on the experience of Champions, entrants, and judges from the past several K&Q’s A&S Championships.

Numerical scores averaged 17.8 of a possible 25 points, but numbers tell only a small part of the story. Some judges gave in-person verbal feedback, and organizers expect this to be standard going forward. Written comments were also given to every entrant on Feedback forms. These comments remarked on successful strategies and suggested ways to make entries more understandable, relevant, and comprehensive.

Feedback form comments give a good idea of what the judges were looking for and what future participants may expect. To keep the true flavor of the written feedback, direct quotes from the forms are reproduced below in italics although identifying info has been removed. Judges’ comments have been organized into some common themes to provide guidance for artisans not able to attend the event and those who have aspirations to enter it next year.

Delight was evident. “I wanted to sit down with a knife and fork and eat. ♦ Crazy-good project. ♦ Thank you for entering. You showed great courage to put yourself and your work out there. ♦ You did a wonderful job of thinking outside the box to come up with solutions in the process. ♦ Super fun! Huge project. Massive undertaking especially with your tools. Love it! ♦ We appreciate you traveling to us and taking the risks—it shows you care about your art and are reaching out to others with your knowledge.”

Judges were excited by excellence in technique, great workmanship, home-made tools, and elegant experiments. “Gorgeous execution. ♦ Great level of detail. ♦ You show a clear understanding of medieval aesthetic. ♦ Making and showing your tools is also great. ♦Your skills are exquisite! ♦ You made the “thing” to make the “thing”—and then you made the “thing.” We were so excited! ♦ Your enthusiasm is contagious and your knowledge of subject matter is thorough.”

Feedback frequently gave specific advice to entrants about improving their entry.

Describe as clearly as you can what would have been done in period. Also describe what you have done. Try to include images of period examples that you used for inspiration. Photos of your work during the phases of construction help people visualize what you have done to create the work before them. “Be clear about what materials were used in period and whether or not you used those materials. ♦ Include photos of the extant items you are trying to reproduce. ♦ Document process as you go—process photos. ♦ Try to recreate an extant example and include a photo of that for comparison. ♦ Pay close attention to details in your inspiration piece. ♦ Compare your creations (i.e. how did they work?). ♦ The in-process ‘failures’ are wonderful. Please keep them. Your explanation of the process is vivid and exciting and absolutely brings your project to life.”

Historical Background is vital to your judges and spectators who want to understand your work. Imagine you are telling a friend what you’ve found out about the construction and importance of your entry in its time and culture. “Give some historical context. ♦ In your documentation please include more references on what you are emulating. ♦ We would like you to describe how [this] was used, significance, the historical impact, in the time period. ♦ Provide documentation for more of the ingredients.”

Sources help your reader follow your journey to your conclusions. “Try including in-text citations to improve your documentation and/or annotated bibliography. ♦ It would be very helpful to link your “works consulted” more explicitly into the body of your documentation. ♦ Great sources!”

Go deeper. Find ways to make your work broader, more thorough, more period-focused.

  • Find more source material “Look at additional translations. Try multiple batches and/or find another source
  • Investigate a related culture. “Have you considered comparing a similar [item] as interpreted by different countries?”
  • Work towards understanding more period processes. “Try experimenting with period methods. Use more period materials. Try working with a quill. Wed like to see some work done in a period manner using original artwork.
  • Aim for the stars:Challenge yourself with additional ornamentation, be it in accessories or trim. We would love to see a more complex final piece to highlight your skills. Keep practicing and improving. You are going in the right direction by focusing on the details and process.

Get some help from researchers, artisans, editors, scientists, and other experts around the SCA. “Society” is our first name–so ask around–there’s bound to be someone who has interests and experiences related to what you’re doing. It’s a big Kingdom and its people can be amazingly generous with their help.

  • For practical help look around for info on who’s good at something related to your interests—i.e. pottery, metalwork, dyeing, languages. Ask locally and at events. Ask at workshops and classes. Ask around on Facebook’s SCA East Kingdom and SCA Library of Alexandria “For additional [help] see if you can find a mentor. Get more references from practicing experts with experience in your field to help you make better choices.
  • For written documentation ask for pointers from experienced researchers and librarians. They really are there to help. “Discuss your research with librarians or research experts to better support your decisions and your next steps and to enlarge your knowledge base. Understand the chemistry involved. Focus on scholarly research.
  • For proofreading, find an intelligent, motivated friend who doesn’t know all about your work. (!) Get your friend to read your written documentation aloud to you so you can hear what you said instead of what you were trying to say. (This is all-but-impossible to do for yourself.) “Get people to read [your work] aloud for you. Connect with people who can help you with your documentation and prepare for next competition. Show more examples to make points clearer.
  • Find an editor, an experienced writer, or teacher to help you organize your thoughts and express them clearly so you and your readers have more fun. It is not simple to write a clear and comprehensive account of what you did and how that fits into medieval life. If somebody offers to help you, don’t be shy. Contact them right away and see if they have the time and skills to benefit your project. “Your work should be more analysis rather than just doing a report. Provide a clearer and earlier hypothesis in your research paper. We would have liked to see a more specific thesis statement with supporting conclusions.” You’ll know your written work is hitting the mark when you read “Paper was well-organized and easy to read. Clear and accessible to the non-professional. The graphic work was excellent. Depth of knowledge is very evident. You explain it very clearly in person. Practicality and usefulness is impressive.

Consider contest strategy.

  • Read the rules and documents of the contest carefully. Put yourself in your judges’ place: try scoring your entry using the contest score sheet. If you can’t find a specific score sheet for the contest you plan to enter, use the K&Q’s A&S rubric https://drive.google.com/file/d/0B6FxAc78rj92ampicDVYRWxnRGc/view from this year. Scoring your own entry will help you see your work in a different light.
  • Edit your entry. Bring only items representing your very best work AND directly contributing to the “story” you are presenting. Focus your documentation on your entry today. “Target documentation on what specifically you are presenting. Tie your documentation to each pieces in a clear and concise manner. Pictures are good but only show ones that support the pieces you have.”
  • Presentation is important. An A&S Contest is about much more than a score. Most of the people who will view your work are not judges so try to make your work easily accessible to a spectator. “Work on presentation. This didn’t impact your score but would jazz it up.” Try to devise an eye-catching and intriguing display. Think about background, arrangement, illustrations, diagrams, or cards like you see in a museum with a few words in large print to label the items in your entry for the casual observer. What kind of excitement might you spark in a spectator?
  • Ask an experienced judge or competitor to go over your work with you a few weeks before the contest.
  • Look for the A&S Consultants table at an event near you. This is a brand new Kingdom Arts and Sciences initiative planned to connect you with experienced A&S judges to discuss your work. They’ll be there to provide insight and guidance. Use them.

Judges and populace simply cannot wait to see what the future of these researchers and artists will bring. “We have seen lots of growth and look forward to future projects! ♦ You are clearly passionate about your topic. ♦ Enthusiasm was plain to see. Keep going. ♦ We look forward to seeing more of your work. ♦ Rock on! ♦ Your excitement is inspiring. ♦ You have promising skill and we would love to see future work. ♦ Can’t wait to see what you show us next time.”

Entrants, spectators, royalty, and judges all seemed to have a rockin’ good time. Let’s do it again next year. Between now and then, let’s fan the fires of enthusiasm and vigorously support the artisans and researchers around our Kingdom. It’ll be exciting to see who enters the contest next year and what beautiful and fascinating knowledge they bring.


Filed under: Arts and Sciences Tagged: King and Queen's Champions

Greetings From the New EK MoL

Wed, 2017-03-08 15:34

It was with much gratitude for the amazing work done by Mistress Sabina Lutrell that I assumed the office of East Kingdom MoL on Saturday at the Black Rose Ball.

I am looking forward to working with the Martial, Marshal, and MoL communities in the coming years and welcome any comments or suggestions that any of you have for making the office work for you and for the fighters and fencers of the East. You can reach me through the Kingdom MoL Email account or speak to me in person at the upcoming Coronation or Crown Tournament events.

You can now download new copies of the various authorization-related forms from the EK MoL website at your convenience.  I encourage anyone with blank authorization forms in their possession to destroy them or alter them to show the new address.

All new completed forms should be sent to:

EKMoL
PO Box 1168
Westbrook, ME 04098

As I stepped up, I left the office of Northern Regional MoL vacant and I am actively looking for volunteers or suggestions of people to take over that position. The position of Central Region Deputy MoL is also vacant and I am actively recruiting for that position as well.

I am very pleased that THL Andreiko Eferiev has agreed to remain in his position as Deputy Kingdom Minister of Lists and am looking forward to working with him and the regional deputies, Baroness Ellesbeth Donofrey and Lady Matilda Fossoway,  to continue to uphold the excellent standard of service to the East set by my predecessor.

I would like to take this opportunity to remind all MoLs that annual reports are due.  You can file your annual report by filling out this form on the East Kingdom MoL website.

I am very grateful for the warm welcome that I have received so far from the Martial and MoL communities.

Warm Regards, Baroness Mylisant Grey, OP
East Kingdom Minister of Lists
Filed under: Announcements Tagged: MoL

From the Chancellor of the Exchequer

Mon, 2017-03-06 08:09

From the Chancellor of the Exchequer:

The term of office for the East Kingdom Chancellor of the Exchequer will expire in June 2017.  Applications are now being accepted for this office.  The initial term for this office is two years.  There is the option to request an additional two terms at one year each.   Please note that I am NOT going to be requesting the last additional term.  Having served 3 years in this office, I now need to place my attention elsewhere.

 

Applicant letters of intent, resumes and questions are to be sent to these three addresses/offices.

Kingdom Exchequer

Kingdom Seneschal

Their Majesties and Their Highnesses

 

The duties and requirements of the office include:

  • Managing SCA assets.
  • Maintain current membership in the SCA for the duration of the time in office.
  • Serve as a member on financial councils.
  • Is responsible directly to the Crown, but also reports to the Society Exchequer.
  • Will disburse funds in accordance with East Kingdom and Society Financial Policies.
  • Safeguards and maintains records of the monies of the Kingdom and supervises the finances of the Kingdom.
  • Receives monies allocated by East Kingdom Law or donated.
  • Disburses the monies of the Kingdom in accordance with East Kingdom Law.
  • Makes a report of the Kingdom finances on a quarterly basis to The Crown and Kingdom Seneschal.
  • Supervises the Lesser Office of Kingdom Archivist.
  • Supervises the Lesser Office of Kingdom Chamberlain.
  • Supervises the Lesser Office of Kingdom Pennsic Steward.
  • Is responsible for maintaining the financial records of the kingdom, supervising the finances of the kingdom, and assembling financial reports and submitting them to the Society Chancellor of the Exchequer in a timely fashion.

Additional descriptions, expectations and or detailed requirements of this office can be found in CORPORA & SCA governing documents, Society Financial Policy, EK-LAW and East Kingdom Financial Policy.

 

In service,

Maestra Ignacia la Ciega, East Kingdom Chancellor of the Exchequer

 

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Filed under: Announcements Tagged: Exchequer, kingdom officers

Arts & Sciences Research Paper #17: Early Quilting and Patchwork: A Short Introduction

Fri, 2017-03-03 11:21

Our seventeenth A&S Research Paper comes to us from Mistress Sarah Davies of the Barony of Bergental, who introduces us to the surprising world of historical quilting, where we discover some familiar friends and some quite unfamiliar new ones! (Prospective future contributors, please check out our original Call for Papers.)

Early Quilting and Patchwork: A Short Introduction

Silk quilt by Mistress Sarah Davies. Photo by Master Henry McQueen.

The word “quilt” summons a host of images:

  • Thrifty pioneer housewives cutting up worn clothing to piece elaborate patchworks for their families.
  • Album quilts raffled off for a worthy cause.
  • Wholecloth petticoats worn by colonial dames who danced with George Washington, then carefully preserved in a museum.
  • Brightly colored feed sack quilts during the Depression.
  • Community quilts telling the story of a town from its founding to the Bicentennial.
  • Inexpensive versions of patchwork quilts sold in department stores for families wanting that “country look” in the bedroom.
  • Cherished art quilts hanging in museums or going for high prices at auction.

The popular image of the quilt is of the quilt is modern, calico, and as all-American as an apple pie.  If the word “medieval” ever comes up, it’s because someone made a Game of Thrones quilt with appliqued dire wolves in the border.

The problem with this familiar stereotype is thatit doesn’t begin to reflect reality.  Patchwork and applique may be most associated the United States, but quilts themselves are anything but modern. Quilted carpets were prized on the steppes of Central Asia, quilted garments padded Crusader mail and protected Elizabethan fencers, quilted coverlets graced Tudor bed chambers, and quilted heraldic tapestries hung in Hungarian throne rooms. The evidence is scattered and sometimes hard to recognize, but quilting and patchwork were hardly alien to medieval Europe.

Contents
Definitions
Origins
The Earliest European Examples
Quilted Armor
Domestic Quilting and Patchwork
A Cloth of Honor and a Pillow
Later Developments
Henry VIII: Quilt Owner
SCA Uses

Further Reading
Where to Examine Historical Quilting Firsthand

Definitions

“Quilt” and “patchwork” are so strongly associated that most people think that a quilt must be patchwork, and a patchwork must be a quilt.  Not only is this not true, it confuses two very different types of needlework.  A more accurate description would be as follows:

  • Quilting is a type of padded embroidery that takes two layers of fabric sandwiched with padding of some sort, then stitched together in a decorative pattern.  The word derives from the Latin culcita, a padded mattress similar to a modern futon.  Equivalents in European languages include  coltra (Italian), colcha (Spanish and Portuguese), coite  (French, later superseded by courtepointe), and culte (the Netherlands).
  • Patchwork or piecing is a type of sewing that takes several different types and colors of cloth, cuts them into geometric pieces, and stitches them back together in a decorative. Most are lined to protect the seams, but they do not need to be padded or quilted.
  • Patchwork quilts are quilted bedcovers consisting of a pieced upper layer, an inner padding, and a plain backing held together by geometric or decorative stitching.

Most early quilts were whole cloth (non-pieced), usually of fine linen or imported silk.  The first tantalizing hints of what might be medieval patchwork date from the twelfth and thirteenth centuries, with one surviving artifact that might have been both pieced and quilted.  Even then, it’s not at all clear that this item was intended for a bed, as evidence suggests it was more likely intended as a cloth of honor for a royal throne room.

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Origins

The first known quilted object is a quilted linen carpet dating from around the first century of the Common Era.  It was found in a Siberian cave tomb, and the central motifs (primarily animals, with abstract spirals on the borders) are wool appliques stitched into place with couched cording on the raw edges, while the background is diamond quilted in a coarse running stitch.

Whether the Siberians developed quilting on their own or learned it from outsiders, its advantages in such a cold climate are obvious: warmth without bulk, strength without stiffness, and easily adapted to multiple uses.  It was also unusual enough that it could be traded for luxury goods along the Silk Road and other trade routes running across Central Asia down to the Mediterranean trade ports.

This seems to be exactly what happened.  The next known quilted objects were both trade goods, and were both found in archaeological digs.  One, a quilted slipper that seems to have been cut down from a larger object (a bed quilt or carpet), was actually found in a rubbish tip along the Silk Road.  It was likely made around the eighth or ninth centuries CE, and is a very typical “Turkish slipper” with a low vamp and tilted toe.  It is of linen padded with cotton or linen tow, backed with more linen, and quilted in the backstitch with coarse linen thread.  It was almost certainly intended for indoor wear, as the sole is made from the same quilted item as the rest of the slipper.

The other early quilted object, a quilted wool funeral pall dating from the fifth or sixth centuries, is more problematic.  It was found in a Merovingian tomb in the 1990’s, and unlike the slipper, it seems to have been made in Europe, or at least for the European market; it is of wool, not linen, and is quilted with cotton thread and stuffed with cotton thread, both imported from Egypt.  Without further examples, we can only speculate as to its origins, but the pall’s existence, and the use of expensive imported materials in its construction, suggests that there might have been a quilting industry, at least on a small scale, either somewhere in the Mediterranean Basin or perhaps in Merovingian France itself. Without further examples, we can only speculate.

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The Earliest European Examples

Unfortunately, there is almost no evidence of quilting anywhere near the West for the next several hundred years.  There are a handful of references in tax records to silk quilts being sent by the bale to local rulers, but these are exclusively Asian.  There is only one written reference to a quilt in a European record and one painting showing what might be a pieced or quilted item, with no physical evidence until the early fourteenth century.

The written reference is a French poem from the 12th century, La Lai del Desire. This little chivalric romance, only a few hundred lines long, includes a description of a bridal bed covered with a “quilt of two sorts of silk cloth in a checkboard pattern, well made and rich: “Sur un bon lit s’ert apulé / La coilte fu a eschekers / De deus pailles ben fais e chers”. (Lais inédits des XIIe et XIIIe siècles, ed. Francoise Michel, Paris, 1836: 18-19.) The word coite is used so casually that it’s clear that the author simply assumed that his audience, wealthy, sophisticated, and used to the very best, would not need to be told what a coite was, or how it was made.

The painting, by the school of the Italian artist Cimabue, is more intriguing.  Dating from around 1275-1300, this small, elegant panel painting shows the Madonna and Child seated on a low couch, flanked by Saints Peter and John the Baptist while two sweet-faced angels hold up a piece of fabric behind the Madonna as a sort of floating cloth of honor.  The cloth of honor, which is so strikingly different from the usual brocade or cloth of gold seen in such paintings, was hailed by art historian Roberto Longhi as a “stupendous, decorative invention,” and it’s not hard to see why.  Black and white gyronny patterns alternate with blocks of red in what is almost certainly an attempt at showing a patchwork cloth of alternating red brocade and black and white pinwheels.  Whether this cloth was actually quilted is not clear, as the greenish highlights on the red are probably intended to depict a brocade pattern and not stitching.  However, it’s very clear that something that we’d call a patchwork quilt was not out of the question in the SCA period.

Madonna and Child with Saint John the Baptist, Saint Peter, and Two Angels c. 1290. National Gallery of Art. Samuel H. Kress Collection 1952.5.60.

As tempting as it is to conclude that the little Cimabue painting indicates a thriving patchwork and/or quilting industry in the late thirteenth century, however, there is still no definitive evidence for this.  Spanish silk weavers, steeped in the Moorish decorative tradition of geometric patterns, produced magnificent brocades that bear such a strong resemblance to patchwork that least one quilt historian assumed that a brocade cope from the 1200’s was patchwork.  The same may well apply to a mid-fourteenth century fresco by Florentine artist Taddeo Gaddi of The Marriage of the Virgin.  This homely scene, which includes a groomsman giving St. Joseph a congratulatory slap on the back, shows a geometric textile of red, green, orange and white hanging from a roof…and though it certainly looks like a quilt, and could easily be a quilt, it could just as easily be a piece of Spanish brocade.

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Quilted Armor

Fortunately for historians and SCAdians alike, more definite evidence for both quilting and patchwork begins to appear around the year 1300.   Professional armors specializing in quilted gambesons and other forms of padded armor begin to crop up in court records.  The French court had a “courtepointier,” or quiltmaker, while a few decades later someone known only as “Niccolo de la Coltra” worked in Padua as ‘the master of quilts.” These professional quiltmakers were far from unique; professional quilt and quilted armor guilds were active in Bologna, Rome, Florence, Venice, and Genoa by the fourteenth century, often in association with cotton guilds. Southern France was another center of the European quilting industry, particularly whole cloth white quilts.

The primary product of these quilted armorers were closely fitted padded armor intended to be worn on the upper body, either over or in place of steel armor.  They were known as jacks, arming doublets, coat armor, jupons, aketons, or haketons depending on area and period, and their construction was strictly regulated.  One Italian guild required that jupons be padded with linen or cotton tow to the depth of three fingers’ breadths on the shoulders and two fingers’ breadths upon the torso for maximum protection. Aristocratic versions were often made of rich fabrics such as heavy velvets or silk brocades, then padded so heavily in the chest that their wearers were compared to greyhounds.  Less exalted versions, made of linen padded with cotton or wool, were lighter, cheaper alternatives to metal armor, so they became a popular option for foot soldiers, sappers, or archers. There were even jacks where small steel plates were sewn inside the padding, then layered with more cushioning for extra protection.

Several such pieces have survived, most in surprisingly good condition.  The most famous include the “Black Prince’s jupon” in Canterbury Cathedral, the coat armor of Charles VI in Chartres, the doublet of Charles de Blois in Lyon, and a curious German tunic that layers linen, padding, and small steel rings for extra protection.  Less famous but arguably more interesting is the Rothwell Jack, a rare piece of armor worn by a common foot soldier or archer.  Unlike its aristocratic kin, the Rothwell Jack is so crudely made that it was probably thrown together on short notice, either by a sailmaker or possibly its original owner.  Its materials, over twenty layers of raw wool and coarse linen stitched together heavy linen thread, are equally humble, and again indicate that it was made by a non-professional.  Although local historians long claimed that the Jack belonged to John of Gaunt, it almost certainly belonged to one of his archers, as the right armscye is all but worn away while the left is largely intact.

Quilted armor disappeared late in the SCA period thanks to the invention of firearms, as quilted armor was useless against a bullet or other small projectile.  However, protective garments of quilted linen were still popular among court tennis players, as in a 16th century painting by Francesco Becaruzzi, while quilted doublets of leather lined with silk were used as fencing jackets by the wealthy.

There is also an abundance of artistic evidence for quilted clothing and armor during the fourteenth and fifteenth centuries.  The best known is Hans Memling’s The Chasse of St. Ursula, but there are several funerary sculptures, particularly in Germany and Switzerland, showing knights wearing quilted gambesons or jacks.  There is also a tiny Italian ivory of The Flight into Egypt showing St. Joseph wearing a quilted tunic that might have begun as coat armor, although it equally could show a peasant tunic quilted for warmth.

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Domestic Quilting and Patchwork

There is less somewhat less physical evidence for domestic quilting during the early Middle Ages, while aside from La Lai del Desir, there is nothing in writing about patchwork until a French memoir of 1507.  However, there are a handful of extant quilts and two pieces of patchwork that hint at a much richer tradition that has been lost to war, wear, and time.

The oldest known actual whole cloth European quilts are three trapunto, or stuffed quilts from Italy.   Two, the so-called Guicciardini quilts, were probably made for a Florentine wedding in the 1390’s (and may have originally been a wallhanging), while a third seems to have been an actual coverlet.  All are made with the same materials (linen top and back, cotton padding, linen thread) and with the same technique (dark brown backstitched outlines on the decorative motifs, running stitch on the backgrounds).  The iconography and the motifs are so similar that these items were all but certainly made in the same workshop, while the designs and the captions on the Guicciardini quilts are in an otherwise rare Sicilian dialect.

The Tristan Quilt (detail). Victorian and Albert Museum, Museum no. 1391-1904.

The Guicciardini quilts, one in the Victoria & Albert Museum in London, one in the Museo di Bargello in Florence, have been the subject of scholarly controversy for nearly a century.  They seem to have been made for a wedding between two powerful Florentine families around 1394, but whether they were originally a set of two quilts for two beds, one quilt for an enormous ceremonial bed, or a huge wallhanging is not known.  Some scholars, notably Arthurian specialist R.S. Loomis and quilt historian Susan Young, believe they were designed as a set, but recent analysis by Sarah Randles indicates that they were probably one huge piece that was cut apart and reassembled into two quilts for reasons that made sense at the time.  The piece in the Bargello belonged to Guicciardini descendants as late as the 1920’s, while the section in the Victoria & Albert was acquired around the turn of the twentieth century.  The iconography, a Sicilian retelling of the story of Tristan and Isolde depicted in large squares similar to the panels on a modern comic book, seems strangely inappropriate for a wedding gift, especially if the quilt(s) was indeed intended for use on the bridal bed.

Less well known is the third quilt, which was owned by the Pianetti family.  This piece, only half of which was extant when it was last photographed, once again showed Tristan and Isolde, only in central medallion surrounded by heavily stuffed fleur-de-lis.  The border shows allegorical figures feasting in vineyards and gardens, but there are no captions so the meaning is not clear.  It was last seen in 1938 and has vanished without a trace, leading to the tragic but unavoidable conclusion that it might have been lost during the massive destruction of World War II a few years later.

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A Cloth of Honor and a Pillow

Quilt historians assumed for decades that the Guicciardini and Pianetti quilts were the only surviving medieval quilts.  However, a startling discovery around 2000 in Budapest challenges this assumption.  Archaeologists excavating the old Tekeli Palace found a silk textile depicting the arms of the Arpad and Angevin dynasties encased in mud at the bottom of a rubbish shaft.  The Anjou Textile, as it is now known, was wet-cleaned and disinfected by conservators to remove mud and bacteria, then examined for clues to its construction and original purpose.  The mudball had been found alongside coins dating between 1390 and 1427, while physical analysis of the actual cloth indicated that it was at least a few decades older than the coins.

The Anjou Textile. Budapest History Museum.

Close examination revealed that this textile was pieced and appliqued in red, white, blue, and golden silk, while its age indicated that it was likely made not long after the Cimabue painting with the patchwork cloth of honor.  Stitch patterns on the cloth and a few bits of cotton padding and linen thread clinging to the wrong side clearly indicated that the Anjou Textile had originally been quilted in a diamond pattern at least twenty or thirty years before the Sicilian whole cloth quilts.

Most striking of all, Hungarian court records from the reign of King Charles Robert reference a large order of red, white, and blue silk from Italy, while the king’s Great Seal of 1331 clearly shows a patchwork cloth of honor that is all but identical to the Anjou Textile.  As unlikely as it may seem, the evidence indicates that there is a strong possibility that the Anjou Textile was pieced and quilted no later than 1331, and probably about ten years earlier.

As important as the Anjou Textile, it is not the most elaborate piece of early patchwork.  That honor must go to the Impruneta Cushion, one of the most remarkable surviving pieces of early needlework, regardless of technique.

This small pillow, only one foot square, was found in an Italian tomb in 1947.  The little town of Impruneta, about fifteen kilometers south of Florence, had been bombed in 1944 during the Allied advance up the Italian peninsula.  It wasn’t until 1947 that the town had the money to check on the tomb of its fifteenth century bishop, Antonio degli Agli, which had been knocked open when bombs struck the pilgrimage church of Santa Maria dell’Impruneta.

Bishop Agli himself had suffered little damage during the attack, but the most significant find in his tomb was the tiny cushion that had been placed under his head by his grieving niece, Deinara, when he died in 1477.  The cushion, which seems to have been one of the bishop’s favorite possessions, turned out to be not a simple pillow but a dazzling piece of early patchwork, with elaborate star and checkerboard patterns on the front and a simple but striking geometric pattern on the back.

The Impruneta Cushion, with the back also visible. Photo by Sailko, under Creative Commons licensing.

Analysis by an early conservator known only as “Signor Clignon,” supplemented by a thorough conservation/stabilization by the Tuscan state conservation agency in 1990, revealed that no fewer than thirty different types of silk lampas, brocade, damask, satin, and velvet were used to piece the front of the cushion.  The actual pieces ranged in size from approximately 1.5 inches to perhaps a quarter inch square, and were so finely and accurately stitched that conservators speculated the makers used stiff paper or pasteboard to stabilize the shapes during construction.  The seams, which had been repaired at some point during Bishop Agli’s lifetime, were all reinforced with couched cording.  The back of the cushion was pieced of inch square pieces of wool arranged in concentric squares.  This not only produced a noticeable sense of movement, but is all but identical to the modern patchwork pattern known as Trip Around the World.  Just as on the front, the seams on the back were reinforced with couched cording.

Italian scholars believe that the cushion was made between 1425 and 1455, as it was clearly used before being put in Bishop Agli’s tomb.  As carbon dating would require destroying a large section of the cushion itself, it is not possible to give a more precise date unless Agli family records surface mentioning the cushion.

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Later Developments

The Renaissance brought increased trade with the Eastern countries where quilting originated. The Ottoman Empire had a native tradition of quilted bedcovers and caftans; surviving examples from the courts of 16th and 17th century sovereigns such as Suleiman the Magnificent and Selim the Grim are worked in the running stitch on silk broadcloth and brocade, lined with cotton to get around the Qu’ranic prohibition against silk garments.  Court etiquette dictated that clothing be presented to foreign ambassadors, so it is possible that European diplomats posted to Constantinople returned with quilted caftans in their baggage.

This was the time when European countries established colonies and trading posts in Asia. India had a strong native quilting tradition and quickly began producing export work in cotton and silk (the very word calico, later the name of the favorite quilting cotton, is derived from Calcutta). Portugal in particular imported “pintadoe quilts” from its Indian possessions, as well as palampores and unquilted spreads that were later worked up into “colchas” on the Iberian peninsula. Several of these Indian/Bengali quilts have survived, including one in the collection of Hardwick Hall in England, almost a dozen in the Museum of Antique Arts in Lisbon, and a half-circle cape in the Metropolitan Museum of Art.

Indo-Portuguese Quilted Cape. Metropolitan Museum of Art, Accession Number 23.203.1.

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Henry VIII: Quilt Owner

By the sixteenth century, silk and linen quilts were quite popular in wealthy households throughout Europe.  Among the best examples of this is the 1547 death inventory of England monarch Henry VIII.

Henry VIII’s inventory provides a unique look at quilts in aristocratic households.  He owned over one hundred quilts and quilted coverlets, including two quilts assigned to his bath, sixty “holland” quilts of fine linen for bedding, and approximately forty quilts of various types of silk.  One of the quilts, a green sarcenet coverlet worked in roses, pomegranates, and fleurs-de-lis, may have dated from early in Henry’s marriage to his first queen, Catherine of Aragon, or even been part of her trousseau when she married his brother Arthur.  Other quilts were “payned” (pieced) in color combinations such as purple and white, green and white, and five or six colors such as tawny, green, yellow, blue, crimson, and white.  There were even two “quiltes of canvase to cover cartes,” presumably part of the equipment used to move the royal household on Henry’s frequent progresses.

Many of these quilts likely either Indian imports or European copies of expensive Indo-Portuguese work, such as the Indo-Portuguese silk quilts, but the “holland” quilts of fine linen stuffed with wool were likely made in Northern Europe.  Four or five of these would be used as actual bedclothes, while a silk quilt, often very elaborately worked with metal or silk threads, would be used as a bedspread.

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SCA Uses

There are several uses for quilts and quilted objects in the SCA. The most obvious, and common, is armor. Although quilting was used for both gambesons and jacks, padded linen jacks cannot be made list legal. However, a finely quilted jack would look spectacular in court. A better choice for a heavy weapons fighter would be a gambeson or a quilted tunic worn over armor in cold weather. The only caution would be to use only cotton batts – synthetic batts do not breathe, and armor made from them could cause a fighter to overheat and suffer a heat stroke. Most pre-quilted fabric is made with polyester batts and should be avoided for this reason.

Another good choice would be quilted bedding, either pillows or bed quilts.  Most fabric stores offer basic quilting classes, by either hand or machine. Machine quilting is obviously not period, but it’s possible to quilt a whole quilt in a day by machine. Virtually all modern quilts are made of cotton broadcloth or calico – again, not period, but washable, cheap, and very practical for camping. And Indian bedspreads are so close to palampores that a quilted version would make a fine addition to any campsite.

One warning: quilting is addictive. The calicos used for modern quilting are among the most beautiful cottons being made today, and who can resist beautiful fabrics? So don’t be surprised if what begins as a single gambeson, or a way to use up scraps, turns into a full blown obsession!

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Further Reading

Colby, Averil. Quilting. HarperCollins, 1972.

Evans, Lisa. ‘”The Same Counterpoincte Beinge Olde and Worene’: The Mystery of Henry VIII ‘s Green Quilt”, in Medieval Clothing and Textiles 4, Robin Netherton, Gale R. Owen-Crocker, eds. Boydell Press, 2008.

—. “Anomaly or Sole Survivor? The Impruneta Cushion and Early Italian ‘Patchwork'”, in Medieval Clothing and Textiles 8, Robin Netherton, Gale R. Owen-Crocker, eds. Boydell Press, 2012.

Von Gwinner, Schnuppe. The History of the Patchwork Quilt Origins: Traditions and Symbols of a Textile Art. Schiffer Publishing, 2007.

Where to Examine Historical Quilting Firsthand

Colonial Williamsburg in Virginia
Historic Deerfield in Massachusetts
International Quilt Study Center & Museum in Nebraska
Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York
Shelburne Museum in Vermont
Victoria & Albert Museum in London

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Filed under: A&S Research Papers, Arts and Sciences Tagged: a&s, Arts and Sciences