Friday, 25 September 2020

This Unique Activity Hasn’t Been Stopped by COVID

Le Mons has also been staying connected through classes and virtual scavenger hunts, inspiring fellow members to research topics and hunt for information online. “All of the Arts and Sciences that we’re doing is in preparation for us being able to get back together, but it’s holding us together at the same time,” he says.

Through racial injustices and the global health crisis, staying connected online has helped Coulson “mentally and spiritually” with “the increasing amount of hopefulness I have for this world in these stressful and turbulent times.”

Fodor's Travel has posted an article on the SCA, with special attention giving to how members have been interacting during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Read the full article here.

Thursday, 24 September 2020

The Fifth Chronicle of Eoforwic



The Great Chronicle of Eoforwic has in the past been written  by numerous scribes:  The first being Etienne de L'Isle, the second being  William of Roncesvalles, the third being Hyrcanos ben Jacob  of Oporto, the fourth being Magnus of Iona.  As  that  fourth account  ends  with the Accession of David and Tangwystl to the Dragon Thrones of the Middle and the final court of Baron Aedan and Baroness Caffa of Septentria, it is mete  that this fifth book begin herein. 


The Chronicle of Eoforwic of Amaury de Hinton Being the sixth Chronicle of that Royal City




This is the sixth of the books of history of the Royal City of Eoforwic. The first was that of Etienne de L'Isle, the second was that of William of Roncesvalles, the third was that of Hyrcanos ben Jacob  of Oporto, the fourth was that of Magnus of Iona, and the fifth was that of Susanna of Leicester, sister to my patroness.  That fifth book concluded with the twentieth anniversary of Eoforwic, and was recorded not long after those events.  Some ten years have passed since those happy days.  Many citizens of the City have dispersed and traveled afar, or are no longer seen.  Others, after a long absence, have been once again seen in the City’s streets, my patroness among them. Newer citizens, having read the first five books, have clamoured to hear what transpired in the ensuing ten years.  And so Magistra Nicolaa, being civic-minded and intensely proud of the City in which she has again come to dwell, persuaded upon me to share the private chronicle that I had kept for many years and often shared with her in the days in which she traveled in southern lands, and longed for tales of her homeland and its people.


The fourth volume of The History of Eoforwic


The fourth volume of

The History of Eoforwic



Being the chronicles of the Royal Burgh

from the first day of the

Crown Principality of Ealdormere,

20 August, Anno Societatis XXIII,

to the last day of Aeden and Kaffa

as first Baron and second Baroness of Septentria,

08 June, Anno Societatis XXVI.


The Third Book of The Chronicle of Eoforwic

The Third Book of
The Chronicle of Eoforwic

A Truly Written Account
of the Events of Moment
in the Canton of Eoforwic
from Earliest Times,
Including the History of the Founding
of the Crown Principality of Ealdormere

Written at the hand of
Hyrcanos ben Jacob Porto of Oporto

Printed with the aid of God in the City of Eoforwic

The Chronicle of Eoforwic of Hyrcanos ben Jacob
Copyright (c) 1989 A.J.S. Nusbacher

With great respect and devotion do I, Hyrcanos the Judge the son of Jacob
Porto of Oporto, present this chronicle to my employer the Lord James
MacAndrews (of glorious name) in honour of his liege lord the Duke
Fionnbarr de Taahe, may he live for many good and long years. Long have I
laboured in its making, and long have I polished the bare innards of my
purse, preparing to honour the remuneration which must surely come.

I have read the past chronicles presented to Duke Fionbarr (may he live for
years that are good and long), that from Etienne de l'Isle, and that from
William of Roncesvalles and Trevarius (the Trierite). I have read the
histories compiled by the great Duke himself into the famous Tales of the
Midrealm Kings. I have read the histories of Orlandus Ambrosius. Now do I
attempt to make a chronicle of Eoforwic which combines a great deal of the
brevity and accuracy which befits a chronicle as well as some of the wonder
and glory which accompanies an history.

The Second Book of the Chronicle of Eoforwic


The Second Book of
the Chronicle of
including the account of
The Barony of Septentria
and a relation of
the early history of

Text copyright 1989 R. Scott Caple and W. Ted Szwejkowski
Illustrations copyright 1992 R. Scott Caple

Here begins the Preface:
This is the second part of the Chronicle of Eoforwic, telling of the
fortunes of its folk and the growth of this Canton in the ways of the Known

It follows the first part of the Chronicle, written by Etienne de l'Isle at
the request of his lord, Duke Finnvarr de Taahe. Of late, the noble Duke
was desirous of a continuance of the Chronicle, and a setting down of the
momentous events that had transpired since the completion of the first part,
 lest they fade from the memory of men. His servant Etienne being then
heavily burdened, Duke Finnvarr entrusted this task to my lord and patron,
Master Robert of Two Cliffs, who in his turn bade me, William of
Roncesvalles, to compose this part of the Chronicle.

Duke Finnvarr's Mug

This ceramic mug was presented to Finnvarr de Taahe, by a new mmeber of the SCA, when Finnvarr was King of the East Kingdom (1973).

It calls Finnvarr the King of Ostgardr which was the new name for the New York area. It also mentions  Myrkewood (the name for the Baltimore-Washington area) where Finnvarr lived at the time.

Saturday, 19 September 2020

SCA Households – A Look Back

SCA households have been many things – a family, a group of friends who like to hang out together, a group of artisans – even a large collective! 

Family History – Tsvetan Arinsson’s Laurel Medallion

This medallion comes with the history of my SCA family. The story begins with Dame Enid Aurelia, first baroness of Skraeling Althing and my own mentor. Though I was never formally part of her household, my best friend (Mistress Etaoin O’Fearghal) was her apprentice, and Ouen atte Thorne was a member of both her household and mine. Tsvetan Arinnson was also one of her apprentices. 

Tsvetan started as a member of Skraeling (now Caldrithig) around 1980. A couple of years later TSvetan moved to Der Welfengau where he became seneschal. He was keen to learn to dance and became apprenticed to Enid, who taught him what she knew – his favourite dance was Sellinger’s Round. He loved to camp and he loved Pennsic; he was one of the first people to teach dance in the barn. He was also quite a good cook (more evidence that he was family). TSvetan put great energy into the SCA. One of his greatest achievements was producing An Evening at Castle Althing, which the canton put on in 1980 or 81 at Carleton U. He arranged the venue, the funding, the props… Enid put together the play, and coordinated the writing, singing and dancing, but it would not have happened without him. 

I first met Tsvetan at an event, possibly in Skraeling Althing, shortly after I moved here. He was very sweet and kind – so kind that when I headed off to my first Pennsic and discovered that my tent and other gear had not arrived (it was being delivered from Trinovantia Nova), I went to him. I knew almost no-one else there, and Tsvetan was the only one I felt brave enough to ask for help. He kindly offered me a place to stay and made me feel welcome. It was a very generous thing to do for someone he barely knew, and I have never forgotten it, even though, in the end, my stuff arrived and I didn’t have to take him up on the offer. 

In the late 1980’s, Tsvetan became very ill and Ouen moved to Guelph to help care for him. The Order of the Laurel had recommended him for elevation and he was officially elevated on January 20, 1990 in Der Welfengau by Ariake and Tadashi. He died a few days later. Tsvetan like to display a bi-coloured pennon, black and yellow, and for many years friends and apprentices had these and brought them to events. The medallion pictured above was made by a member of the order who lived in Ohio and admired Tsvetan’s work. Enid thinks he was also a dance laurel. If you look closely, you can see a little TA at the bottom. The medallion arrived too late for Tsvetan, so Enid kept it in trust for an appropriate moment. When I was elevated in 1999, Enid presented me with the medallion and told the story at my elevation. I have treasured it ever since. It seemed appropriate share my medallion with Xristina when she was elevated at Feast of the Hare. She is now holding it in trust for the next worthy member of the household. 

Mistress Siglinde

[Skraeling Althing Chronicle, February 2015]

The History of the Ealdormere Academy of Defense

 By Lady Jocelyn Roget de Cranewall, Praceptor of the Ealdormere Academy of Defense

The Ealdormere Academy of Defense was founded by Royal Charter on 13 September, A.S. XXXII, during the reign of Prince Edward, and Princess Rylyn, in counsel with their Rapier Champion Lars Eriksson, some fifteen years ago. Loosely based off the historic London Masters of Defense, the Academy is purposefully structured to provide practitioners of the arte of defense with a set of self-guided long range goals. This encourages rapier combatants to expand their personal skills of prowess and explore the historical theory through research. The Academy structure is made up of five ranks, Cadet, Scholar, Free Scholar, Provost and Dean. 

Each rank of the Academy has a number of requirements for advancement to that rank. The requirements have been designed to help combatants grow in their personal practice of the arte and other activities beneficial to the Kingdome of Ealdormere. Between ranks there is a requirement for a time period of one year between each rank. This is to encourage fencers to become dedicated, regardless of their skill level. This Academy is not based on senior members voting for junior members to advance. The emphasis here is on self-improvement, fostering interests beyond rapier play, dedication and fun. 

In keeping with the London Masters of Defence, advancement to higher ranks shall be accompanied by the member seeking advancement (the Prizor) calling a Prize. The Prize is a display of skill in which the Prizor shows his prowess in different weapons forms. The Prizor will fence a number of duels to display his or her skill. When the Prize is completed, if the requirements of the Prize have been met, then the Prizor is invested in the new rank. 

Members of all ranks are highly encouraged to do research into the art of rapier play. There are a number of period manuals by rapier masters available. Also encouraged highly is service to your group, and the members of the fencing community as a whole. Assisting in training and marshalling lightens the load on everybody else, and allows all of us more time to have fun! Not to mention the experience gained, and the relationships forged with other fencers. 

Most of the duties of each rank are presented with the rank. Some are repeated between the ranks to emphasize their importance. There is a duty that applies to us all, fencer and non-fencer. A list of these duties per rank may be found at: 

Today’s Dean prize fight represents achievement of the highest rank in the Ealdormere Academy of Defense. To be considered as eligible to challenge into the rank is a significant accomplishment. A candidate must earn each of the Academy ranks, Cadet, Scholar, Free Scholar, Provost, and Dean, by demonstrating prowess, wearing period armour, demonstrating knowledge of period rapier combat techniques, becoming an active a member of the rapier marshallate, and presenting research projects in an educational forum. The Prizors challenging for the Rank of Dean are HE Giovanni d'Enzinas, Baron of Skraling Althing and THL Gareth Cambell. 

Many thanks are extended to those of you who, having a passion for the arte of Defense, and having travelled to participate, attend and bear witness to this event. Know your presence here is appreciated in joining the Academy in celebration, and providing moral support for these dedicate combatants in their pursuit to achieve their next rank in the academy.

[Skraeling Althing Chronicle, Summer edition, May 2012, A.S. XLVII]

Thursday, 17 September 2020

Defunct Groups in Ealdormere

A number of early SCA groups in the Kingdom of Ealdormere were founded, many of which failed after a few years. The names of many of these groups are recorded in the Chronicles of Eoforwic and the Historia Septentriae, although their mundane locations may not be.

Defunct groups are generally said to have "fallen into ruin"; occasionally, an extant group is said to be "founded on the ruins" of a defunct group which previously existed in their area.

An incomplete list
  • Aron Araf -- Mentioned in the Historia Septentriae as holding their first event in A.S. 14, it was noted as being "cursed", and "fell into ruin" after many years. This canton was established in Stratford, Ontario, later to be replaced by the canton of Ashford-upon-Avon
  • Ashford-upon-Avon
  • Ben Dunfirthshire -- Formed in AS 11.
  • Brennistein Vatn -- This shire formed in  A.S. 43, mergin the shires of Noerlanda and Flaming Sky. It later became the Shire of Ulfhiem in A.S. 54.
  • Caer Draeth -- The Canton of Caer Draeth (Barrie) was found around A.S. 12. It merged with the Canton of Swan's Deep (which had originally split off from it) to form the canton of Beremere (process begun around A.S. 45 and culminating in January A.S. 51).
  • Dubras -- A short-lived canton, Dubras dissolved in A.S. 15, later to be replaced by the Canton of der Welfengau.
  • Greenhithe -- A former incipient canton of Septentria which grew out of Whit's End (located in the City of Oshawa and surrounding area) around 1998. The group was also known as Greenhithe bae the Waeter and Greenhithe by the Water (the later version of the name was registered with the College of Heralds in 2005). The group dissolved in 2007.
  • Flaming Sky -- This shire joined with the shire of Noerlanda to form the Shire of Brennistein Vatn in A.S. 43; which later became the Shire of Ulfhiem in A.S. 54.
  • Harrowgate Heath -- Founded in AS 38, this canton of Skraeling Althing contained the counties of Grenville and Dundas and later the City of Cornwall. The canton disolved in AS 54.
  • Kalendia Formas -- Founded as a shire of Ealdormere in A.S. 12, it dissolved shortly thereafter and was never restarted.
  • Noerlanda -- Founded as a canton in A.S. 10 in the city of Sault Ste. Marie. Notable for hosting the first Feast of the Bear in Septentria. It fell into ruin in the late 1980's and was re-born in 1996. In 1999 they became a shire. The group merged with Shire of Flaming Sky (North By area) to form the Shire of Brennistein Vatn in A.S. 43; which later became the Shire of Ulfhiem in A.S. 54.
  • Pont y Scythe -- Now defunct, it was established in the city of Burlington, in territory now controlled by the Barony of Ben Dunfirth.
  • Roaring Wastes -- Mentioned in the Historia Septentriae as being "to the southwest of Septentria", it was mundanely in the city of Tillsonburg, now lands held by the Shire of Trinovantia Nova.
  • Skraeling Althing -- The canton formed in A.S. 12, and later became the Barony of Skraeling Althing.
  • St. Antonius -- This college was established in A.S. 32 (1998) by Magistra Sciath ingen Chaennaig after she emigrated from An Tir but ceased its activity in A.S 37 (2003).
  • Steinbach -- Founded in A.S. 22 near Stony Creek, Ontario, this canton existed briefly and dissolved. The lands formerly held by this canton are now part of the Barony of Ben Dunfirth.
  • Swan's Deep -- Based in the Penetanguishene-Midland area, it originally split off from the Canton of Caer Draeth in Dec A.S. 37. Later re-merged with Car Draeth to form the canton of Beremere (process begun around A.S. 45 and culminating in January A.S. 51).
  • Westbellford -- Centered on the city of Brantford, Ontario, this canton in the Barony of Ben Dunfirth fell into ruin. In A.S. 53, the Canton of Stórfjǫrðr was built over its remains.
  • Wessexmere -- A short-lived canton, later replaced by the Canton of Bryniau Tywynnog in the Barony of Ramshaven.
  • Whit's End -- Briefly existed in A.S. 32, this group dissolved and reformed later as the Canton of Greenhithe.
[Original text copied from Cunnan, September 17, 2020, and edited by Colyne Stewart.]

Ban on Regions

The Ban on Regions (also known as King Alen's Proscription) was a kingdom law of the Midrealm in force from April A.S. XX to August A.S. XXIII. As recorded in the third and fourth books of the Chronicles of Eoforwic, the creation of Ealdormere as a Principality was a matter of some controversy. In January A.S. XX (1986) the Eoforwic Pursuivant James MacAndrews submitted a proposal to the Dragon Throne, calling for the creation of a regional champion, as the first step towards making Ealdormere a Crown Principality.

King Alen Elegil of the Midrealm responded by calling a hurried meeting with his advisors. The so-called Washroom Curia (it was widely rumoured at the time to have been held in a public restroom at an event) resulted in the issuing of the infamous "Ban on Regions". Published in the April A.S. XX edition of the Pale, this edict attempted to halt the effort toward creating local regions within the Midrealm by forbidding the use of local regional organizations beyond those Shires and Baronies recognized by the Crown. Combined with a change in Kingdom Law raising the requirements for becoming a Principality dramatically, the practical effect of the Ban was merely to alienate the people of Ealdormere by forbidding even the name "Ealdormere" from open use. The region of Northshield was also affected by the Ban, and as Northshield and Ealdormere were Canadian territories in the Midrealm, this added an additional aspect of resentment.

Tellingly, King Alen did not personally deliver the news to his northern subjects, but instead required then-Crown Prince Palymar of the Two Baronies to bear the edict to them at the next major event where many Ealdormerans would be attending. Unfortunately, the next event was the Feast of the Passing of the Ice Dragon in the East Kingdom. So the Midrealm Crown sent its Crown Prince to a foreign kingdom to tell its own subjects something terribly unpopular. The Crown's decision was much-denounced in the Northlands and, on reflection, not facing the populace at home added insult to injury.

Shortly thereafter, James MacAndrews was stripped of the office of Eoforwic Pursuivant by the Dragon Herald Baron Charles O'Connor; while the reasons given were unrelated to his proposal, in Ealdormere it was widely seen as a punitive act done on the orders of King Alen. Rather than discourage the pro-Principality faction, however, these events only strengthened an underground commitment to greater independence from the Midrealm. A number of poems and songs written during and after "the dismal days of silence" illustrate this point, in particular the popular and well-received "Doom of Ealdormere" by Baron Aedan.

Many of the pro-Principality faction at this time began styling themselves "Wolf's-heads", (a euphemism for "outlaws") and thus it was that the now-common symbolism of the northern wolves entered Ealdormerean art.

While the stringent Principality requirements would be slightly eased by King Alen himself in A.S. XXI, the Ban remained in effect until the 17th Pennsic War in A.S. XXIII (1988). At the Midrealm War Court, King Corwin of the Middle granted a charter making Ealdormere a Crown Principality.

The effect of the Ban on Regions is still felt in many Ealdormerean traditions today. The King and Queen of Ealdormere are sometimes styled "Their Lupine Majesties", a reference to the spirit of the wolf which carried Ealdormere through the years of King Alen's Proscription. Musical, poetic and bardic references to the time of the Ban on Regions abound, and Ealdormereans remain fiercely proud and protective of their independence.

Based on information in the Chronicles of Eoforwic and the Historie of Septentria.

[Captured from Cunnan, September 17, 2020.]

Wednesday, 16 September 2020

Mini-History of the Shire of Noergate (defunct)

Noergate was a shire located predominantly in the city of Sault Ste. Marie, Ontario. It originally formed as a canton in A.S. 18 (1984 or 1985). According to Cunnan, the canton "became defunct away by the mid to late 80s." The shire's webpage states that the "current shire has existed since 1996" (A.S. 30-31), which Cunnan confirms: "Fortunately, however, the canton was reconstituted in 1996."

They became a full status shire in March 1999 (A.S. 33) during the reign of the first Ealdormerian King and Queen, David and Elina.

The group merged with Shire of Flaming Sky (North By, Ontario area) to form the Shire of Brennistein Vatn in A.S. 43; which later became the Shire of Ulfhiem in A.S. 54.

Tuesday, 15 September 2020

A Short Tale of Skeldergate's Past

 Uncredited. [archived source]

Gather round, good gentles, if you would hear the history of the College of Skeldergate. This is as near to the full tale as can be obtained, and is the result of much hounding of the good Baroness Ursula na Clan na Rath until her brain revealed the history you are about to read. Many thanks are therefore due her, not only for the account you find here, but also for the critical role she played in the creation of Skeldergate.

In the beginning, Skeldergate was not named Skeldergate, nor was it a College. Rather, it was originally the Canton of Noerlanda. This was in the days before the presence of the Barony of Septentria made itself known, marry, even before the surrounding lands came to be known as Ealdormere. And so, the only neighbouring area to Noerlanda was the Canton of Eoforwic. Alas, despite being host to a few events, Noerlanda failed to thrive. Much rivalry arose between the northerly canton and Eoforwic, and in the end, Noerlanda was disbanded by the Kingdom.

But then, years later, when Michel d'Arques and Kaellyn Mac Dermott of Leinster were Prince and Princess of Ealdormere, did interest spring up once again. A student by the name of Osric Caerfinn na Conchullain, accompanied by his lady, Cualgne, had traveled from Ben Dunfirth (Hamilton) to attend the college where Noerlanda had been born so long ago. He became possessed of a determination to start the group anew, and to this end approached the fair Ursula na Clan na Rath, one of the original Noerlandans, on how to go about this great task. Thus a new group was formed.

On the advice of the local Baron, it was created as a College for the increased flexibility such a title conveyed. As to a name for this new College, it was determined that the name of "Noerlanda", carrying as it did so many old connotations (and not a few of them disadvantageous), was never to be spoken again. And so, the members of the new College hunted far and wide for a suitable name to apply to themselves. Among those considered were Albion, Yorvik and Eboracum, but none of these were to the liking of the intrepid pioneers. Then word came that there was a bridge in the city of York in the old lands of England which went by the name of Skeldergate. This appealed so much to the members of the College that they applied it, after a vote, to themselves. Thus was Skeldergate born.

Skeldergate owed its success to the supreme efforts of its first members. Cualgne played a greatly supportive role, and the group was joined by students of art by the names of Bertram and Archibald Wetherford III, described decisively by Baroness Ursula as "funky". Also among the early members was a gentle by the name of Sigurd the Bard. They all worked hard, despite natural inclinations towards mischievous shenanigans, and started the group off well. The three original officers were Ursula, the seneschal; Osric, the herald; and Archibald, who assumed the tasks of both Minister of Arts and Sciences and Chronicler. In his Chronicler capacity he did put out a newsletter by the name of Skattered Notes.

Not long after, at an Ice Dragon event, Ursula was heard to have spoken the forbidden name of Noerlanda. Accordingly, her fellow members of Skeldergate put her on trial. She was found to be quite guilty and was sentenced to turn around three times, spit in a corridor, swear, and ask for permission to enter again. Most uncomfortable was she with the notion of spitting in a corridor, but it was a deed that had to be done, and so she was readmitted to the College.

The population of Skeldergate had its ups and downs, and so it did not apply for full status immediately. However, its events met with great success. The first Skeldergate event was a Baronial Twelfth Night, and Osric and Cualgne were the autocrats. Next came the Royal University of the Midrealm (RUM), autocratted by Madinia, another success, attracting gentles from far and wide. It was around this time that Hector of the Black Height became the Marshal. His great talent at teaching caused Skeldergate to become known for having fighters of quality. The next event was A Knight in the Country, a dance event, for which the College brought in a laurel from the mundane lands of California. Following that was a Viking Raid on Eoforwic, where Thorbjorn Osis Brandsson and his household were the major Skeldergate force against the Eoforwic group.

In the following year, Skeldergate revived the tradition of "social Sundays", when gentles of the College gather to play games, dance, do projects and talk amongst themselves. These mini-events were based on the group meetings known in the early days of Skeldergate.

Following that, Skeldergate was host to the Midrealm Coronation, where the College's own Thorbjorn Osis Brandsson was (again) crowned King of the Middle Kingdom. This event was a great success, and caused the name of Skeldergate to be known throughout the kingdom.

At the Wassail event in AS XXXIII, Their Majesties David and Elina of Ealdormere announced in Their court that Skeldergate was now full status. Thus the College of Skeldergate was created. Now that this is accomplished, who can say how great Skeldergate may become.

The First Days of Tor Brant

By Lord Duncan Gabh MacLeiod, The Skraeling Althing Chronicle, May 2010

In the very early days of Tor Brant, there were two of us, Lachlan McMallfinn of Egg, and myself. 

He had been involved in the SCA out in An Tir. I had never heard of the group before meeting Lachlan. 

He thought there was a group in Ottawa and eventually we made contact and started attending meetings and fight practices. 

Word started getting around about us and a few friends and acquaintances started to gel. 

Long before we started on any kind of paper work, we needed a name. 

In a flash of inspiration, I grabbed the English-Norwegian dictionary and came up with Enfoldig Avgrunn. Please remember we were just on the military base at this time, so I thought that “Mindless Abyss” was quite appropriate. 

We started having irregular meetings and traveling to a few events. Word came back to us that our original name was a little too self degrading for the Dragon Herald. 

So some of the people knocked their heads together and came up with (sp?)Dalulian Dubh, or the valley of Black Wolves. This got bounced for being (a) too long and (b) sounds like somebody trying to talk with too much oatmeal in their mouth. 

The next name that was fl oated was Dun Claidheamh, but somebody pointed out that our nickname would be Dumb Clam Heads… so Tor Brant was chosen instead. 

By this time the group had put in the paperwork to become an official group. 

That is how the present name and arms for Tor Brant came to be.

The Origins of Feast of the Hare

By Dame TSivia bas Tamara v’Amberview

The Skraeling Althing Chronicle, Fall Edition Page 5 Nov 2010 A.S. XLV 

Back in the mists of time when rocks were still cooling (1977), an intrepid group traveled from Toronto for a long weekend in Ottawa to introduce the city to the SCA. 

Included were the newly crowned Prince Finnvarr, Lady Bolverk, Mistress Gillian d’Uriel (then Olafsdottir), and myself. 

Less than three months later, off I moved to start the Canton of Skraeling Althing. The first “come meet the SCA” meeting at my apartment in Sandy Hill welcomed nearly 50 people. 

As (then) Prince Finnvarr rightly pointed out, a group isn’t a group until it puts on its first event. 

Approximately a year after Skraels started to meet and hold fi ght practice, a full-day event and feast was set up for a local community centre in town. 

One of the biggest tasks was finding a name for the event, and a play on words title was chosen. 

At the time, there was a group in Toronto (where Skeldergate currently sits), called “Noerlanda”. This group sponsored a yearly event called the “Feast of the Bear” (this name will be familiar to many, as the event name was revived many years later by Eoforwic). 

Given that this was Skraeling Althing, featuring the infamous “Bunny Fru-Fru” hare on its arms (from a children’s punny story), we decided to name this first event the “Feast of the HARE” as a nod to the Noerlanda event. 

The first Feast of the Hare was small: approximately 25 sat feast including some visitors from both the Toronto and Hamilton areas. It was a learning experience for all in the fledgling Canton (for instance: cooking the feast for an event in a bachelor apartment which is not near the site is a dad idea!), but a good time was had by all. 

The Feast of the Hare has gone through many permutations and changes over time: it has focused on fighting, the gentle arts, or on fencing; it has featured classes, or arts and sciences displays; it has had first-rate bardic performances, firejugglers, and near eastern dancers, and it has always hosted the court of the Baron and Baroness of the Barony of Skraeling Althing for their annual taxes. 

And so the Feast of the Hare continues as one of the Kingdom of Ealdormere’s longest continually running events, with this November being Feast of the Hare XXXI.

Wednesday, 2 September 2020

Great Performances: an SCA Bardic Showcase

[Image source: Great Performances: an SCA Bardic Showcase Facebook event]

The Great Performances: an SCA Bardic Showcase ran from Aug 16 to Aug 29, 2020, and was hosted by the SCA Virtual Classroom and Artisan Display group on Facebook. The event description read:

The Goal: To have a wide variety of Bards across the Knowne World entertain everyone with their best performance.

What: Pick what you feel is your very best performance and share it. No Judges, no stress, just beauty. The performances can be period pieces, filks, SCA Historical Tales, original works, or modern pieces that have an SCA feel to them. Entertaining is the key. The genre is up to you. Single performers as well as ensembles are encouraged to participate.

Each performer will receive a coin (see picture) struck by Magister Arion to commemorate their participation in the Showcase.

The Great Performances: An SCA Bardic Showcase will be hosted as an event on
The SCA Virtual Classroom and Artisan Display Facebook page from August 16 to August 29th. Please post a video of your performance in the event page during this time period.

We are asking each performer will also be asked to fill out a brief sign up questionnaire so that we can mail your coin to you at the end of the Showcase. 

On Sep 2, 2020, one of the event's organizers posted the following message to the Kingdom of Ealdormere group on Facebook:

Hello Everyone,

Great Performances: an SCA Bardic Showcase has completed.

I come now to give word fame to the bards of Ealdormere:

Ines De Freitas, Kráku-hallr Gunnarsson (called Seamus), Maister Colyne Stewart, Rufus of Stamford, and Martin Bildner brought honor and glory to your fair Kingdom with their performances. 

They stood proud among 88 performances shared from 18 Kingdoms. The magnitude of the response far outstripped our expectations, and the stunning variety of performances was amazing. There are some very talented performers throughout the Known World, and they wowed us with performances that made us laugh, cry, smile, and want to stand strong until we can all be together again. 

Magister Arion and I want to thank everyone who took the time to perform and share their art in this event. The success of this is owing all to you. As I said before, your response to this was beyond our wildest imagination. You all are amazing! 

If you haven't had a chance to see the performances, they are still available to view. Please go watch them if you can. They are wonderful. 
Lady Fina MacGrioghair