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Unofficial Court Report from Coronation

East Kingdom Gazette - Fri, 2014-04-11 17:31

And it came to pass on 5 April 2014, AS XLVIII that Their Majesties Kenric II and Avelina II did leave the throne in favor of their heirs.

Thus Brennan Augustus and Caoilfhionn Augusta became Emperor and Empress of the Kingdom of the East!

The Greater Officers of state in attendance swore oaths of fealty to Their Majesties, as did the landed Barons and Baronesses, and the Viceroy of Ostgardr.

Their newly crowned Majesties processed from the hall as the historic Roll of Kings was sung. Soon after they sat in state for a time.

In triumph they came before the populace. His Majesty Brennan marched in with an impressive escort, followed by Her Majesty Caoilfhionn carried upon a litter and accompanied by an equally impressive escort.

Their highnesses of Æthelmearc, Tindal and Etain, as well as Their Majesties Acre, Damien and Tara, were invited to join Their Imperial Majesties in court. His Highness Tindal announced that the Sylvan Kingdom or Æthemearc would ally with the Kingdom of the East at the coming Pennsic War. His Majesty Damien presented, and together with Their Majesties, signed the historic Treaty allying Acre with the Kingdom of the East at the coming Pennsic War once again.

Einarr Njortharson, called Billyfish, was called before Her Majesty. He was thus named Captain of Her Guard, and called forth those who would stand in defense of Her person.

Their Graces Duke Gregor, Duke Edward, Duke Konrad for himself and representing Duke Andreas, and Duchess Kiena representing Duke Brion were invited before Her Majesty. All had been called upon to provide guards for Her reign, and those chosen were presented to Her.

Earl Kenric and Countess Avelina were called before the court. Their Majesties did invest them each as a Duke and Duchess of the Kingdom of the East. Both received Ducal Coronets and Cloaks, and His Grace Kenric a scroll by Eva Woderose. Her Grace Avelina received a scroll featuring illumination by Honig von Somerfeldt and calligraphy by Eva Woderose.

Lu An Hua was called before Their Majesties. She was made a Lady of the Court, and received an AoA with a scroll by Ding Li Ying Nu Shr, with words by Alayne Alexandra Nyvern Nightwatcher and Chinese calligraphy by Shr Ti Fun.

Devra Hanna bat Jacob was next called before Their Majesties. She, too was made a Lady of the Court, and received an AoA scroll created by Mergriet van Wijenhorst.

Cedric of Armorica was called before the Court. Heralded in by Aneleda Falconbridge, he received leave to speak to the populace in order to issue a challenge in honor of the 20th Anniversary of the same challenge offered prior to requesting the hand of his lady, Annastrina.

Antonio Patrasso was called into court by Her Imperial Majesty. Caoilfhionn Augusta presented him with a Queen’s Order of Courtesy, where he did receive a scroll by Isabel Chamberlaine, with words by Caoilfhionn inghean Fhaoláin. His Majesty Brennan Augustus presented Antonio with his own QoC glove, originally received from the hand of Duchess Jana.

Genovefa De Magna Villa was next called before Their Majesties. She was named a Lady of the Court, and presented an AoA with a scroll by Palotzi Marti.

Co-Autocrat for the event, Maerhild of Settmour Swamp, was called before Their Majesties. She was named a Lady of the Court, and presented with an AoA scroll featuring calligraphy by Kayleigh MacWhyte and illumination by Suzanne Nueber de Londres.

Engracia de Madrigal was next called before the Emperor and Empress. The Order of the Silver Rapier companions were called forth, and Engracia was thus awarded the Silver Rapier, receiving a pendant from Owynn Greenwood and a scroll featuring illumination by Camille des Jardins, calligraphy by Alexandre St Pierre, and words by Alys Mackyntoich.

His Majesty demanded the presence the Tyger Clerk of the Signet, Kayleigh McWhyte, in order that he might put an end to her impertinence in correcting Him when He addressed her as “Your Excellency”. She was named a Baroness of the Court, and presented a pair of scrolls. The first, in crayon, stated plainly – “Dudes, She Be a Baroness”. The second, a more formal scroll, was also received. Both were the works of Edward MacGyver dos Scorpius.

Thus closed the first court of Their Imperial Majesties, Brennan Augustus and Caoilfhionn Augusta. Long may they reign over the Empire of the East!

In service,

Don Malcolm Bowman

Eastern Crown Herald

PS – Thank you to the Heraldic staff for the day! Rowen Cloteworthy, Aildreda de Tamworthe, Ryan McWhyte, Thomas De Castellan, and Jehane de Fenwyk

Photos by Lord Hugh Tauerner and Baroness Cateline la Broderesse.

 

 

 

 

 


Filed under: Court, Events Tagged: coronation

Wyoming college hosts Biduum Latinum

SCAtoday.net - Fri, 2014-04-11 16:03

Latin is alive and well at Students at the college are required Wyoming Catholic College where students and professors recently participated in Biduum Latinum, a Latin immersion weekend, where everyone spoke only Latin. KCWY News 13 has the story.

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Categories: SCA news sites

State Library of Victoria completes digitization project

SCAtoday.net - Fri, 2014-04-11 14:39

The State Library of Victoria in Melbourne, Australia has just completed a project to digitize medieval and renaissance manuscripts from its own collection as well as some from the Ballarat Fine Art Gallery. The manuscripts are available to view on the library's website.

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Categories: SCA news sites

Queen Caoilfhionn’s Kids Service Initiative

East Kingdom Gazette - Fri, 2014-04-11 13:37

Please share widely the following message from our new Queen, and if your group is hosting a Royal Progress event, you are encouraged to include this youth activity!

Unto the fine people of the East Kingdom do I, Caoilfhionn Augusta, send my warmest greetings.

Many times I see our children hard at work learning about crafts and pursuits medieval and ancient. I see them learning about heraldry, life in times gone by, clothing that was worn and why. I see then engaged in youth combat, archery, and fencing. All of these things are good and pleasing. It left me to wonder, though, what do we teach them of OUR society, how the SCA functions and thrives on the backs of the hard working folks who give of themselves their service that we all might live the dream.

Service comes in many forms, great and small, from holding a kingdom office or autocrating an event to washing dishes and moving benches. Every hand makes the work lighter, every link in the chain makes it stronger, and every “thank you” given I earnest makes us a little brighter and happier.

Thus, I created the Kids Service Initiative.

At every Royal Progress event (autocrats willing), we will have something of a service scavenger hunt. Each item has a number of points, from 1 – 4. Any child reaching 10 points by 30 minutes before court is scheduled to begin can turn in their sheet to the Royal Room (All checked items should have adult signature/initials). Their names will be called in court and they will receive a token of a bead from My hand. Every event shall have a different color bead so at the time that our heirs take the thrones, the children can have one or many.

Service items may be any of the following (depending on the availability of activities and autocrat permission at any given event):

4 Points

  • Wash dishes for kitchen for 15 Minutes (1 point each add’l 15 minutes)
  • Retain for Royalty for 30 minutes (1 point each add’l 30 minutes)
  • Organize & run games for younger children (6-12)

3 Points

  • Help Setup Tent/Easy up
  • Be a runner for List (from marshalls to MOL) Older children only (6-12 yrs)
  • Guard Royal Room for 15 Minutes
  • 15 minutes helping at Troll (hand out site tokens or site booklets) (1 point each add’l 15 minute)
  • 15 minutes working in kitchen (any) (1 point each add’l 15 minute)
  • 15 minutes water bearing (1 point each add’l 15 minute)
  • Wipe down tables/sweep hall between activities
  • Help set up hall for Court (move chairs, clean up from day’s activities)

2 Points

  • Help Serve/Put out Dayboard
  • Help Set up Tables for Dayboard (Move tables, Put table clothes on, etc)
  • Run a message (written or oral) from one person to another (troll, merchant, MOL, etc.)
  • Errands for merchants
  • Assemble site tokens

1 Point (Only counts once for each. Multiple times doing same thing is not multiple points but greatly appreciated)

  • Help someone carry something
  • Pick up garbage that is not yours and throw away
  • Hold the door for someone
  • Give up your seat to someone else
  • Help load/unload a vehicle

The above list is by no means exhaustive, and can be added to or built upon as we move along. You are free to write in an act of service if it is not on the event’s check-off sheet.

This program is designed for kids aged 12 and under, as it is our assumption that children over the age of 12 understand the gravity and nature of service already and would not require this type of incentive or game-based education (you find the fun aaaand SNAP! The job’s a game!). We would welcome the assistance of the older kids with this program if they wish to help out. It could be very rewarding for them, and would help the younger kids to be more eager about getting involved.

Lady Gautselin will be helping to coordinate this for me and will be the contact person for event autocrats.

This is a program that I am very excited about and I look forward to the participation of the Children of the East.

In Service to the Dream,
Caoilfhionn Augusta


Filed under: Events, Youth Activities Tagged: children, service, Youth

What does a medieval literature scholar see in 'Game of Thrones?'

Medievalists.net - Fri, 2014-04-11 01:00


From PBS Newshour: Brantley Bryant, associate professor of medieval literature at Sonoma State University, shares what he sees of The Canterbury Tales, the Morte d'Arthur and Beowulf in HBO's "Game of Thrones."
Categories: History, SCA news sites

Iron Age mint found in Leicester

History Blog - Thu, 2014-04-10 23:14

An archaeological survey on the site of future construction in Leicester, central England, has unearthed evidence of an Iron Age mint. More than 20 Iron Age coin molds have been discovered at the Blackfriars site since excavations began in January, so large a number that it strongly suggests the site was a mint used by the local British tribe, the Corieltavi, who had their capital at Leicester.

What makes this find particularly exciting is that Leicester is just 15 miles west of Hallaton, the village where a massive treasure including 5,296 British silver and gold coins, 4,835 of them from the Corieltavi tribe, was discovered in 2000. It’s the largest group of Iron Age British coins ever found in Britain. Roman coins and coins from other British tribes were also found at Hallaton, along with a Roman cavalry parade helmet, silver bowls, jewelry, the remains of 400 pigs and several dogs. The site was an open-air shrine in use between 50 B.C. and 60 A.D., with the valuables interred as offerings to the gods.

Given that the British coins found at Hallaton make up 10% of the total number of British Iron Age coins ever discovered, it makes sense that there would be a nearby source, like, say, a Corieltavi mint in Leicester. The molds don’t have reverse images to identify the kinds of coins struck. They were dated to the early 1st century A.D. thanks to fragments of high status pottery recovered from the ditch where the first coin mold was found.

The site appears to have been an enclosure in the British Iron Age. There were at least two distinct phases of Iron Age activity, followed by at least three phases of Roman activity. Most of the structural remains come Roman phases of occupation, starting with a residential townhouse. There are foundations and partial walls, no floors, but the remains of mosaic tesserae and painted plaster that indicate the house was highly decorated and therefore expensive. There was also a colonnade, as evidenced by surviving column bases. The walls were thick and supported by buttresses so it must have been a building of considerably size.

Inside the building evidence of burning and of a kiln over multiple floor layers suggest at some point this building was dedicated to industrial use, perhaps the production of roof and floor tiles. Several tiles have been found bearing the adorable signs of why they were discarded.

The team also found a Roman tile in the northern half of the site, with what appear to be dog paw imprints embedded in the ceramic.

Nick said: “When tiles were made in Roman times, they used to get local clay and leave it out in the sun to dry and pets and animals used to escape across them leaving these kinds of imprints – it was quite a common thing to find.

“We’ve also found some floor or roof tiles with sheep or goat prints here as well.”

Also one with what may be cat prints judging by the size, shape and the absence of visible claws.

Much of the masonry and columns were lost over time, probably repurposed in the Middle Ages for construction of the Blackfriars Priory. There are several instances of medieval construction features cut into the Roman archaeology, plus the remains of medieval pottery and cesspits.

Categories: Arts and Sciences, History

Coronation of Brennan and Caoilfhionn

East Kingdom Gazette - Thu, 2014-04-10 13:54

An Irish seeress, Mistress Aife ingen Chonchobair in Derthaige, pronounces the doom of King Kenric

On April 5th in the Barony of Settmour Swamp, King Kenric and Queen Avelina received an unexpected visit in the court from an Irish seeress proclaiming the following:

King of the East! I speak your wyrd.
I see it in the flight of birds,
in the rising smoke, in the shifting clouds.

King of the East, I speak your wyrd.
The wolf is coming, cloaked in splendor.
The eagles scream above his footfalls.

King of the East, I speak your wyrd.
The white horse falls from the high place,
driven by the wolf, hard at his heels.

King of the East, your wyrd is spoken.

Lady Mhari Brewbane translates the words of a mysterious Irish seeress – “King of the East! I speak your wyrd.”

This visit was followed by a Roman oracle speaking the same words.  Heeding the warning, King Kenric and Queen Avelina put their affairs in order and stepped off their thrones.  They summoned and crowned their successors, Emperor Brennan and Empress Caoilfhionn, who then took the vows and assumed the symbols of the rulers of the East Kingdom.

The following are photos from Coronation.  Our thanks to the photographers, Lord Hugh Tauerner and Baroness Cateline la Broderesse.

 

The seeress Faustina Numera Septima pronounces King Kenric’s doom

King Kenric is shaken by the words of the seeresses and seeks the counsel of His Queen

King Kenric awards Mistress Elizabeth Eleanor Lovell His cypher

Queen Avelina thanks worthy members of Her royal house

Prince Brennan, right and just heir to the Eastern throne, Wolf of Tir Mara, answers the royal summons

Princess Caoilfhionn, nobly attended, answers the Royal summons

King Kenric crowns His successor

Queen Avelina crowns Her right and true successor

Emperor Brennan and Empress Caoilfhionn swear to protect the Kingdom of the East, sealing their vow on a reliquary containing earth from the First Tournament

Brigantia anoints Emperor Brennan and Empress Caoilfhionn with water from the Bay of the Mists

The Great Officers of the East Kingdom await the pleasure of their new rulers

The Kingdom Seneschal swears fealty to the newly-crowned Emperor and Empress

The territorial barons swear fealty to the newly-crowned Emperor and Empress

Empress Caoilfhionn, well-protected and wrapped in the luxurious gift given by Her new guard

Lord Martyn de Halliwell leads the assembly in chanting the Roll of Kings – “You rule because we believe!”


Filed under: Court Tagged: coronation

Q&A with Chancellor Minor

East Kingdom Gazette - Thu, 2014-04-10 13:12

Baroness Leonete D’Angely. Photo by Empress Caoilfhionn inghean Fhaolain (MKA: Meredith Bailin Hull)

Leonete D’Angely is the Chancellor Minor of the East Kingdom. Her job is to work with families to integrate activities for children and families into events, provide experience for children to learn about the history, culture, and customs of the Society, and work with the youth combat and fencing programs to provided a well-rounded experience for the youth of our Society. Leonete is very familiar with the needs of youth in the Society, having been one of those youths for the first 11 of her 20 years in the SCA.

There seems to be a growing interest in families and children in the Society. Why?
As the demographics of our society and kingdom change, it is important to make sure that events do a good job of reaching all members of the society. Family participation in events and activities has grown considerably over the last decade, and in many local groups, families with children can represent as much as half of the attendance of an event. It is important to remember that many youth are active, engaged members of our society, and deserve the same respect and time as any other demographic in our kingdom.

Who is in charge of activities for families and children?
Officially, any activities for children only must be run by a background checked, warranted youth activities officer. Realistically, many activities that are designed for or are suitable for families or children are run by the same people as the rest of the activities at an event or practice.

While having a warranted and background checked youth activities officer in every local group is a goal we as a kingdom are working towards, the reality is that often, especially in the outer reaches of our kingdom, there might not be such a gentle to run youth activities at an event. It is also true, that time and time again, youth, especially the older youth, let us know that what they really would like to get out of an event is the ability to participate in all activities, just like the adults do.

Do you have ideas for groups that don’t have a Chancellor Minor?
My office has collected a list of suggestions from families, teenagers, and Chancellors Minor, as well as autocrats of successfully family-integrative events. I’ve organized them into categories based on the type of suggestion they are. There are ways to improve your event infrastructure, the activities offered, and the volunteerism needed to run a successful event for families and children. I am always looking for additions to this list. (See list below.  This pdf from a class taught by Leonete contains the list and other information – Making Events Family Friendly)

Baroness Leonete d’Angely in earlier times. Photo by Baron Ernst Nuss von Kitzengen

How would you suggest groups implement these ideas?
Choose a few ideas that fit in with your local culture, budget, and site infrastructure. Next time your group runs an event, encourage them to add a few more. Use this list to brainstorm at local meetings, and come up with your own ideas. This is not an exhaustive list of all the ways to include families, nor is it a checklist that you must use every idea from. Ask the teens and parents in your area what they would like to see.

It is important to note that not every event needs to have the same level of family-friendliness, or even be family friendly. A tavern event, by nature, might not be designed for those under 21 to attend. An event based on a performance of Beowulf, or Shakespeare, where the main activity is to sit and watch a two hour play, much like a movie theater, may not be the place parents choose to bring their three year old. A Yule event in a shire with many children, or a kingdom level event that many gentles plan to attend, however, is a great place to use as many of these suggestions as might work for your site and event.

Is there anything else that it is important for people to know about activities for families and children?
Parents/guardians remain responsible for their children at all times while at SCA functions. Whether an activity is designated for youth or for all, this is important to remember, and will help people to be willing to teach and welcome children to their activities.

Society has a background check policy for all persons in leadership and supervisory roles that may require contact with otherwise unchaperoned minors. If anyone is considering running a youth-specific activity (minors only), then they need to be background checked through the society and be on the Kingdom Youth Clerk’s roster. This isn’t required for someone running a family activity or an activity where children might be present as long as three or more adults are participating. Anyone who has questions should contact me. I’m happy to explain this in more detail.

Any other words of advice for people thinking about this topic?
You do not need a warranted youth officer with activities planned from start to close in order to throw an event that parents and children both leave excited about having attended. Children and families can enhance the atmosphere and enjoyment of any event, if a little attention is paid to making them feel welcome. I hope the list of suggestions below are helpful for everyone.

Infrastructure

Set aside an area in the main part of the event for families to hang out. Make sure that there are chairs for adults, and some blankets or other way to mark off the space. Label it clearly both at the space and at gate, as well as on the site map. If you have volunteers in your area who can provide some toys that are not glaringly modern, great, however, just the space is highly sought after by parents.

Work with your local group to put together a toy box that can be brought to events. Ask those who craft to provide wooden toys, felted balls, and cloth dolls to put in it. There is nothing like someone else’s toys to get kids excited at an event. Make sure the box and all the toys are clearly labeled with your local group’s name.

At a camping event, set out and label on your map a family friendly area with quiet hours that are earlier than the rest of site. Both families, and those who would like to stay up late and enjoy themselves will thank you.

If your event has space for it, a quiet room for parents to go for changes, nursing, downtime, or naps is a great resource. Label it a family room, and make sure to be clear that there is no supervision provided. Churches that have an infant room, or schools with lots of classrooms are great for this type of space at an event.

Make sure that your event has a family cap or family price. Even if it is equal to two adults and 3 or 4 children and not taken advantage of by more than a few, just putting the word family in your event announcement signals that you have put time and thought into welcoming families to your event.

Have a children’s rate at your event. Discounted rates for minors are not subject to the Non-Member Surcharge, which saves the average family $10 on the site fee.

Parents are more likely to take their children to an event that clearly has “wiggle room.” If an event is A&S based, and your site does not have space for a family room, expect that families with young children may not choose to attend. Outdoor sites in reasonable weather are much more family-friendly. When you are touring sites, think about the needs of your local group, and whether a slightly more expensive site with better amenities, might gain you more family attendance.

If you are running a fighting specific event, rope off and set aside a family viewing area, where kids and parents can watch the fighting from a safe distance, without tall people in the way.

If, in addition to these suggestions, you are also having formal children’s activities run by a warranted, background checked youth officer, do everything in your power to make sure that these activities are in a central part of the event. Time after time parents and children have made it clear that they would rather no activities than to be segregated from the main part of the event.

Activities

Whenever possible, label classes and activities with recommended ages. If an activity could be youth friendly, but not youth specific, label it in the site or class description as so. For example: Inkle Weaving: Suitable for ages 6-adult, however, those under 12 should bring an adult to help them, or Blacksmithing: Suitable for 14 and up, please bring a parent with you if under 18. This is an easy way to let families know that their children are welcome and will not be turned away. Make sure that you have at least 3 adults present at any class that children attend.

At an Arts and Sciences event, have a children’s choice award. The bead in a cup method of judging works best for this. Give each child a few beads, and have a cup or bowl at each A&S entry. If you want to use less bowls, color the beads. Blue for populace, red for kids, etc.

If your event has dancing, label the first half or full hour “Family Dancing Time” Teach simpler dances earlier, before kids start to tire out.

For any event that has a competition aspect, hold an adult-child version of the competition. Archery could hold a parent-child tournament with combined scores at the end. You could hold a family A&S competition, or an adult fencer and youth fencer could pair up and combine points in a tourney.

Hold a tourney where each fighter has a consort of a child between certain ages. Have the fighter present their “consort” to the royals or Baron and Baroness, and the winner of the tourney gets a prize for both themself and their “consort.”

Volunteer Opportunities

Actively seek out teens in your local group to help with planning events and day of service. Most 13-17 year olds can participate fully in assisting in cooking or serving feast or dayboard, setting up halls, heralding, list-running, and other needs you may have during the event. Teens can help with gate, but they cannot be in charge. Please check with your local exchequer for specific rules on those under 18 working at gate, as they vary from group to group.

Groom younger members to serve as well. 8-12 year olds can serve at feast with some help/supervision, and are often incredibly excited to be asked to help. Talk to local parents about jobs that their child might be able/willing to do, which could help at the event. The key is to find a job that the child can do, that actually helps out, rather than causing more stress. Some examples could include: running messages across site, stringing site medallions, and providing water for fighters.

Work to find parent-child volunteer opportunities. At Pennsic, Lost and Found has always advertised itself as a great way to introduce your child to service, and often you can walk by and see toddlers “helping” Mom or Dad work. At an arts and sciences event, ask families to volunteer for shifts at the judging table. A 6 or 7 year old can count out voting beads while Mom or Dad explains the rules. An information table or tent can be manned by a family quite easily, and providing water to fighters can be a family task.


Filed under: Interviews, Youth Activities

Class Roster for Heavy List University Announced

East Kingdom Gazette - Thu, 2014-04-10 13:11

The Province of Malagentia recently announced the schedule of classes for the Heavy List University event, being held this Saturday, April 12th in Eliot, Maine. Full details (including class times, event directions, lunch information, event location, and cost) can be found in the official East Kingdom announcement, or on the Malagentian website.

Classes include ‘Intermediate Sword and Shield’ (taught by Duke Kenric aet Eastseaxe), ‘Historiacal Polearm techniques’ (taught by Duke Vissevald Selkirkson), ‘Movement, Measure and Power in Armored Combat’ (taught by Duke Lucan von Drakenkalue), ‘Two Sword’ (taught by Master Julien de la Pointe), as well as classes taught by Sir Ankara Lig Niki, Syr Kyppyn Kirkcaldy, Baron Matthew Moraveous Avdenmork, Lord Tiernana, and Lord William Ravenhair. The day will also include a demonstration of historical cut and thrust techniques.

Additional teachers are still welcome. If you would like to teach at the event, or simply have questions, you can contact Mistress Ro Honig Von Somerfeldt or Lord Michael Acrensis.


Filed under: Events, Heavy List Tagged: classes, events, heavy list, heavy list university, Malagentia, schola, unbelted, unbelts, university

National Museum’s Viking Ireland video series

History Blog - Wed, 2014-04-09 23:26

The National Museum of Ireland has put together a wonderful video series based on their Viking Ireland exhibit. It’s a tour of Viking history in Ireland as seen through some of the artifacts on display. Each of the eight videos is short and eminently digestible, a sort of capsule history on topics like Viking swords and trade. It also makes you want to go to the museum something fierce, which is obviously the entire point, so job well done, National Museum of Ireland!

The first video is about the Viking battle axe. The stars are three axe heads found together in 2013 in a boat in Lough Corrib, Galway, that date to the 11th or early 12th century. They are three different sizes and, thanks to the survival of small parts of the cherry wood handles still attached to the axe heads and other wood fragments from the rest of the handles, researchers are able to hypothesize that the two smaller ones were probably wielded by one hand, while the largest was probably a two-handed weapon. They’re late enough in date that they almost certainly belonged to Irish warriors, not Vikings. It was the Vikings who brought the battle axe to Ireland. Before that they had axes tools, built heavy to help split wood, but the Viking weapons were designed to be light and sharp, with the maximum amount of cutting edge for minimum amount of weight.

Next is the Viking sword, a more expensive weapon than the axe and every warrior’s most prized possession. The video focuses on a sword discovered in the River Shannon near Banagher in 2012. It dates to between 925 and 975 A.D. The blade may be of German manufacture while the hilt was made in Scandinavia. The coolest part of the video is the X-rays of the sword which gave conservators information about which areas needed work and provided more details about manufacture like the use of silver wire in the hilt.

The Viking Wealth & Trade video has some neat shiny stuff like some pretty huge penannular brooches that were both status symbols for the men who wore them and a means of portable wealth. I loved the set of woven silver cones found in a cave in Kilkenny. They aren’t very heavy in silver so they were purely decorative rather than a potential source of bullion. They were probably attached and hung as tassel from the edges of cloth and worn by a woman.

It was Vikings who introduced coin to Ireland. Before they came Ireland was a barter economy, with cattle as the primary currency. The Vikings were introduced to coin by trade with the Byzantine Empire and Arabic merchants and by plundering the Anglo-Saxon kingdoms which minted coins starting in the 7th century. The video shows one of the first coins struck in Ireland, a silver penny from 995-997, struck in Dublin by King Sitric Silkenbeard.

The Viking Women in Ireland video is a little thin on details. You see some beautiful ornaments found in graves from pre-Christian burials — large oval brooches used to fasten straps of traditional Scandinavian pinafore with glass bead chains strung between them. The highlight for me is a whalebone plaque similar to the one unearthed in Lilleberge (see this post) which the British Museum speculated might be used for food service, but the National Museum of Ireland thinks were used in textile production, maybe to stretch linen or other fabrics, in conjunction with a glass smoother.

Arrival of Vikings & Beliefs is centered on remains and artifacts found in burials in Islandbridge, Dublin, the largest Viking burial site outside of Scandinavia. Featured is a skeleton buried with a sword and spearhead, one of the earliest preserved Viking burials in Ireland. There’s also a splendid collection of swords, axes, spearheads and bosses from shields excavated from the 19th century on. Islandbridge excavations are still making new discoveries, including early single-edged sword from the 9th c., a spearhead, ringpin and the human remains of male 18-20 who grew up outside of Ireland and came to the island a couple of years before his death.

The Irish & the Vikings video is about how the two cultures came together. The Vikings created an urban commercial culture with Dublin as the center of trade and manufacture, while the Irish remained rural and agricultural, living in small groups on crannogs and in ringforts. The presence of urban Viking settlements provided new markets for Irish agriculture, cattle, leather, wool. There are some fabulous surviving textiles in the video.

Despite their disparate living arrangements and cultures — the Irish spoke a different language, had different legal and political systems — there was significant overlap in the material culture as the Irish quickly adopted Viking weapons, tools, jewelry. Not to be missed at the 2:51 mark is the Hnefatafl gaming board, a Chinese checkers or draughts sort of game with pegholes in the board decorated in Viking style.

Also striking is the late 10th c./early 11th c. slave chain found near Ardakillen crannog in County Roscommon. There was slavery in Ireland before the Vikings, mainly prisoners of war, but the Vikings made it into a thriving industry. They set up slave emporiums in Dublin, tapping into a vast trade network that meant an Irish war captive could end up anywhere from Scandinavia to north Africa.

Daily Life in Viking Ireland looks at the two best preserved Viking settlements: Dublin and Waterford. Because the environment is water-logged, the most exceptional organic remains have been found, like bedding that is still green after 1,000 years. Through a scale model drawn from a Dublin excavation, you see the dawn of the European town design, the six different types of houses, the layout of streets and defenses. Artifacts show the daily life in these towns. Pieces of of walrus bone and tusks were worked there, and there was a huge amber trade. More than 3,000 pieces of Baltic amber from the Viking era have been found in Dublin, the second greatest amount of amber found in Europe.

It’s not just about Vikings and the Irish. There’s an amazing leather scabbard at the 4:13 mark that was made by an English man. We know this because he so generously engraved his name on it: Edric me fecit (Edric made me). Around 4:50 you get an awesome tour of tools — his own and ones for other trades — made by a Dublin blacksmith, including the earliest datable spurs and stirrups in Ireland.

Last but not least is the Legacy of the Vikings in Ireland. By the 10th century, the Viking settlers had intermarried with the Irish and the hybrid Hiberno-Norse brought together Viking and Christian design elements. The Crozier of Clonmacnoise looks like a stylized Viking horse head. The Shrine of the Cathach, a decorated gold box meant to hold a 6th century Irish psalter thought to have been written by Saint Columba himself, is inscribed with the name of its maker: Sitric Mac Maghe (no idea if I’m spelling that correctly), a Scandinavian first name and an Irish family name.

Then there’s the jaw-dropping beauty of the Cross of Cong, a processional cross from the 12th century that was created to hold a fragment of the True Cross. It’s an outstanding example of the late Viking Urnes art style which features stylized animals in combat with snakes symbolizing the battle of good against evil.

Categories: Arts and Sciences, History

Stonehenge bluestones may have been local

SCAtoday.net - Wed, 2014-04-09 13:05

Legend says that the bluestones of Stonehenge were transported from a quarry in Wales to the site on the Salisbury Plain, but a new study published in the Journal of Archaeological Science shows that the stones may actually have come from a site only three kilometres from the structure.

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Categories: SCA news sites

Walking Acre

SCAtoday.net - Wed, 2014-04-09 08:22

"The Old City incorporates a multitude of forts, synagogues, mosques and churches, as well as a labyrinth of alleyways that date back centuries to the early Ottoman era and before. And there are plenty of the eight-centuries-old remains of an era when the Crusaders ruled this part of the world," writes Barry Davis in a recent touristy article about Isreal's city of Acre for the Jerusalem Post.

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Categories: SCA news sites

Oldest message in a bottle found by Baltic fishermen

History Blog - Tue, 2014-04-08 23:36

When Konrad Fischer, skipper of the Maria I, found a brown bottle in his net while fishing in the Baltic off the city of Kiel in the northern German state of Schleswig-Holstein, he figured it was just a common beer bottle and went to throw it back into the sea. One of his crew members stopped him, noticing that there seemed to be something inside. They opened up the bottle — the porcelain cap was crumbling anyway — and found a Danish postcard rolled up inside. There was writing on the postcard but much of it was too faded to read. The only clearly identifiable elements were a message written in German asking that the card be sent to an address in Berlin and two five-Pfenning stamps to pay for postage.

The postcard was dated May 17th, 1913, just two months short of 101 years before it was fished out of the sea, which makes it the oldest message in a bottle ever found. The previous record holder was found in 2012, almost 98 years after it was sent. Excited by its advanced age, Fischer brought the bottle and its message to the International Maritime Museum in Hamburg where researchers set about finding out more about the sender.

The address in Berlin led them to identify him as Richard Platz, the son of a baker who was 20 years old in 1913. He was hiking on the Baltic coast with a nature appreciation group when he threw the bottle in the sea. Platz was just 54 when he died in 1946. He was survived by two daughters, Gudrun and Sieglinde, neither of them still living. Berlin genealogist Veit Godoj was able to locate Sieglinde’s daughter, one Angela Erdmann, now 62, who was born six years after her grandfather’s death.

On March 13th, Godoj contacted Erdmann and told her they’d found a message from the grandfather she never knew. Deeply moved by the discovery, she immediately called her cousin Dagmar Born who has been researching the family history for some years. Born sent her cousin a number of Platz’s documents, letters and photographs. The handwriting on the letters confirmed that he was indeed the author of the message in the bottle. It’s possible the bottle has a family connection as well, since his wife, Ella’s father owned a brewery.

The whole family is excited by the find. Erdmann says it has brought them closer together as they look into the family history. They plan to go visit the bottle and message currently on display at the International Maritime Museum until May 1st. After that, researchers will take it out of public view to work on deciphering the faded text.

Its ultimate fate is unknown at this time. The finder Konrad Fischer owns it now, and he has only loaned it to the museum. He could sell it or keep it once he gets it back.

Categories: Arts and Sciences, History

Manx returns to the Isle of Man

SCAtoday.net - Tue, 2014-04-08 21:12

Manx was once the endangered list. Not the cat - the language. But now a new generation of young people, such as singer Ruth Keggin, is doing its best to breathe new life into the speech of the people of the Isle of Man.

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Categories: SCA news sites

New portraits of Shakespeare revealed

SCAtoday.net - Tue, 2014-04-08 17:00

"I subjected the images to fundamental tests of identity and authenticity, and these revealed that we are dealing with true-to-life portraits of Shakespeare, one from his youth, the second from his old age," said Hildegard Hammerschmidt-Hummel about two recently-discovered portraits of William Shakespeare. (photos)

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Categories: SCA news sites

18th c. gilded French salon reopens in San Francisco

History Blog - Mon, 2014-04-07 23:11

After 233 years, eight moves including one transatlantic and one transcontinental, and a meticulous 18-month conservation, the Salon Doré reopened Saturday at the Legion of Honor museum in San Francisco. The long strange journey of this gilded room began in 1781 when it was created as the formal receiving room for the Hôtel de La Trémoille, the palace of Jean-Bretagne-Godfroy, duc de la Trémoille and his wife Marie-Maximilienne, Princesse de Salm-Kirbourg, on rue Saint-Dominique in Paris’ fashionable Saint-Germain-des-Prés neighborhood where many of the old aristocracy had town homes.

The paneling (boiserie in French) was neoclassical in design, with 15-foot gilded Corinthian pilasters framing four arched mirrors and four large doors. It was similar in style to the 18th century neoclassical decoration of the Hôtel de Salm, which was built on the Rue de Lille for Marie-Maximilienne’s relative Prince Frederick III, Fürst of Salm-Kyrburg, between 1782 and 1787. The Hôtel de Salm is now the Palais de la Légion d’Honneur. The Legion of Honor building in San Francisco which now houses the Salon Doré was designed to be a 2/3 scale replica of the Palais de la Légion d’Honneur.

The de la Trémoilles suffered greatly during the French Revolution. They were dedicated royalists, very close to Louis XVI and Marie Antoinette. In 1789, Jean-Bretagne-Godfroy, Marie-Maximilienne and their eldest son Charles Bretagne Marie fled France, with father and son joining the émigré army assembled by Louis Joseph de Bourbon, Prince of Condé, in Coblenz, Germany. Charles Bretagne’s wife Louise-Emmanuelle de Châtillon, whom he had wed the same year the Salon Doré was built, would not leave Marie Antoinette’s side. She was arrested after the fall of the Tuileries palace on August 10, 1792, because she refused to testify against the queen. In September she managed to make a break for it, leaving the country in disguise and joining her husband in England. Two of Jean-Bretagne-Godfroy and Marie-Maximilienne’s sons were guillotined at the peak of the Terror in 1794.

By the mid-19th century, the Hôtel de La Trémoille belonged to the Marquise de Croix but he didn’t get to enjoy it for long. In 1877, the house was demolished during the third phase of Georges-Eugène Haussmann’s renovation of Paris. Haussmann himself was no longer in charge by then, having been fired by Emperor Napoleon III in 1870 under pressure from Republican opponents in Parliament. The emperor died in 1873 and despite the intense opposition to Haussmann’s renovations when the Napoleon III wanted them, four years later the Third Republic picked up where he left off and finished remodeling of Paris into a city of wide boulevards and elegant squares. The rue Saint-Dominique where the Hôtel de La Trémoille stood became part of today’s Boulevard Saint-Germain.

The Marquise de Croix stripped the paneling off the walls before the demolition and had it installed in a first floor room in her new home, the Hôtel d’Humières on the rue de Lille. In 1905, this historic mansion also met a painfully premature demise and apartment buildings were constructed in its place. Again the Salon Doré’s boiserie was saved and in 1918, it was installed as the “French salon” in the Italianate mansion of financier Otto Kahn on East 91st Street in New York City.

The mansion was sold shortly after Kahn’s death in 1934 to the Convent of the Sacred Heart and is now schoolhouse to some very lucky middle and high school students. The Salon Doré was not part of the deal. It was stripped yet again and sold to the Duveen Brothers art dealership where it was installed a showroom in the firm’s Fifth Avenue gallery. In 1952, Duveen sold the room to steel magnate Richard Rheem who hired the French decorating firm Decour to install the salon in La Dolphine, his mansion in Burlingame, California.

In 1959, Rheem donated the Salon Doré to the Legion of Honor in San Francisco. At the time, the museum had a policy against period rooms, but they changed it solely to accommodate the beautiful and historic Salon Doré. It was installed in 1962 and the Legion of Honor became the proud owner of one of the finest examples of French neoclassical interior design in the world. The path wasn’t smooth yet, however. In 1990 the boiserie was stripped once more as part of a major seismic retrofit of the building. When it was reinstalled, it was in a different room minus the parquet floor, ceiling, windows and two of the four doors.

All the moves and reinstallations had left the room far from its original configuration. The museum didn’t even know the proper history of the salon because the Duveens had lied about its provenance to connect it to a more famous palace and architect and presumably charge a higher price for it. Martin Chapman, the museum’s curator of European decorative arts and sculpture, recognized the importance of the room and decided to thoroughly research it so it could be restored to a more period accurate condition.

In 2013, the room was closed for a full refurbishment. The paneling was removed for restoration of its carved elements and gilding. Watch it come down in this time lapse video:

“The aim of this project has been to reinstate this paneling as an architectural entity as well as recreating its program for furnishing based on the 1790 inventory of the room. It was also to provide a full picture of how these salons functioned in the years before the Revolution swept away the culture of the ancien régime and to understand the essential relationship between the furniture and the interior architecture,” said Martin Chapman.

In order to achieve this extensive restoration project, a laboratory was set up in an adjacent gallery that could be viewed by visitors to the museum. In this space, up to 16 specialists worked on the carving and gilding under the direction of Fine Arts Museums’ head objects conservator, Lesley Bone, and the Museums’ conservator of frames and gilded surfaces, Natasa Morovic. The furniture’s upholstery was researched and executed by Xavier Bonnet of Atelier Saint-Louis, Paris. The silk incorporated in the room was woven by Tassinari and Chatel in Lyon, France to a design matched to an 18th century document in that city’s Musée de Tissus et des Arts décoratifs. The trimming by Declercq was laboriously made using traditional techniques and designs derived from 18th century models.

You can see the gilding restoration in this video:

And the master carver doing his magic in this one:

Cutting edge technology worked side-by-side with traditional crafts. Conservators used 3D printer to recreate the missing cradle of an 18th French century clock for the Salon Doré.

The restored panels were installed according to the original floor plan in a new room with period appropriate parquet flooring donated by French antiques dealer Benjamin Steinitz, a coved ceiling, windows and new lighting. Some of the furniture and accessories (a chandelier, three Sèvres vase) came from the Legion of Honor’s collection. Other pieces — a large mirror, a console, chairs — were purchased from various antiques dealers in Paris.

The end result is nothing short of exquisite.

“The Salon Doré will be the only pre-Revolutionary Parisian salon in the United States displayed with its full complement of furnishings. Returning the room to its original glory and revealing its initial purpose, the Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco present the Salon Doré as an example of how a period room can engage a 21st century audience,” said Colin B. Bailey, director of the Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco.

Categories: Arts and Sciences, History

Britain's fifth-century cultural revolution

SCAtoday.net - Mon, 2014-04-07 17:31

"Dark Ages" history traditionally considers the transition from Roman to Anglo-Saxon culture in England a time of bloody conquest, but in a new article published in the Journal of Archaeological Science suggest that the evolution may have been more cultural than brutal.

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Categories: SCA news sites

Change in Heraldic Titles in the East Kingdom

East Kingdom Gazette - Mon, 2014-04-07 16:26

Good gentles all, greetings from Ryan, Brigantia Principal Herald,

There has been a problem brewing for several years as the East Kingdom has modernized. This problem is with one of our longest standing Heraldic Titles. The Eastern Crown Herald has been the primary Submissions Herald for the Kingdom of the East. The title is derived from the heraldic charge The Eastern Crown, which is a specific type of crown which is displayed both in the Heraldry of the Kingdom and the Badge of the Order of the Silver Crescent.

As time has gone on the title Eastern Crown Herald has been misinterpreted in several ways. Some have taken it to refer to the herald of the Crown of the East, the lead herald of a reign. Some have confused it with the Principal Herald of the East.

This problem has been exaggerated by the email address for the Eastern Crown Herald, Eastern.Crown@eastkingdom.org. I have spoken with several previous Eastern Crown Heralds and they have all related to me problems where they would receive emails which mistook the email address as belonging to either the Lead herald for a reign, the Principal Herald, or “The Crown” as it refers to Their Majesties of the East. The Submission Heralds receive a LOT of email per day and sometimes critical information is not passed along in a timely manner.

Therefore, after considerable discussion with my staff, in an effort to relieve some of this confusion and along with the restructuring of the Submissions Process in the East, and the SCA as a whole, I have decided, along with the current heraldic Submissions staff and the SCA Sovereigns of Arms, to shift some Heraldic Titles around. I did not make this decision lightly as I respect the lineage of the title and its origins at the beginnings of our Kingdom.

The Lead Herald of the reign was previously called the vox Regis Herald. This title cannot be documented as following a period naming practice for a Herald. Therefore the heraldic title for the Reign’s lead Herald will henceforth be known as the Eastern Crown Herald. Don Malcolm Bowman, lead Herald for their Majesties Brennan and Caoilfhionn will be the first to bear the title of the Eastern Crown Herald in this capacity.

With the coming restructuring of the Submissions process Mistress Alys, the primary submissions herald of the East, will take the title Blue Tyger Herald for her job. Lady Charitye Dale will remain as the Diadem Herald, as Blue Tyger’s deputy. Lord Joscelin le Esqurel , the External Submissions Deputy, will take on the title of Pantheon Herald which is currently owned by, but unused in the Eastern College.

I ask that a small amount of patience and understanding be given during a transition of this scope. Don Malcolm, Mistress Alys, and Lord Joscelin will work on sorting out the email problems inherent with this magnitude of a change and I trust them to make this transition as seamless as possible.

-In service to the Empire, Crown, and College I remain,

Baron Ryan Mac Whtye, OP, Brigantia Principal Herald of the East.


Filed under: Official Notices

A missive from His Majesty of Acre

East Kingdom Gazette - Mon, 2014-04-07 16:19

 

Unto Our Beloved Allies of the East, Joyous Greetings;

It is an auspicious time for the East. On the tail of the magnificent reign of glorious Kenric and most noble Avelina comes the trumpets of Empire. Thus do mighty Brennan Augustus and radiant Caoilfhionn Augusta assume their rightful place as rulers of this glorious kingdom!

We in Acre do stand in awe and with happy hearts!

We, Damien Rex and Tara Regina, by right of blood and arms King and Queen of Acre, felt blessed to have simply been there to see it. Indeed, we would have accepted simply that and called it fortune beyond avarice. But Their Majesties are most generous, for they as well as Their Excellencies Baron Erec and Baroness Jehannine of Settmour Swamp received us as honored guests, honoring us with a place beside them in Court and among them at High Table, to enjoy the fine and unrivaled fare that only those of the East could provide. For this, for their great friendship, and for so much more, mere gratitude will never be enough. We count ourselves most fortunate indeed to be among your allies, and that we may together make deeper and mightier still the historic friendship between us. Indeed, any who call themselves an enemy of the East will be forced to meet the swords of Acre beside you all and face the folly of their choice to defy the Empire of the Tyger!

The future is bright indeed. Many a great song will be sung and happy tale will be told in the times to come as these most august and resplendent sovereigns forge their immortal legacies in the hearts of their beloved subjects and allies, and carve it upon their enemies’ many graves.

Long live Brennan and Caoilfhionn, and great may they rule! And long live the East! Vivat!

Yours in Eternal Friendship,
Damien
King of Acre


Filed under: Tidings