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SCAguests-msg - 10/7/95


Thoughts on handling visitors and visiting royalty from other medieval groups.


NOTE: See also the files: households-msg, demos-msg, SCA-PR-msg, travel-funds-msg, courtesy-msg, crown-cost-msg.





This file is a collection of various messages having a common theme that I have collected from my reading of the various computer networks. Some messages date back to 1989, some may be as recent as yesterday.


This file is part of a collection of files called Stefan's Florilegium. These files are available on the Internet at: http://www.florilegium.org


I have done a limited amount of editing. Messages having to do with separate topics were sometimes split into different files and sometimes extraneous information was removed. For instance, the message IDs were removed to save space and remove clutter.


The comments made in these messages are not necessarily my viewpoints. I make no claims as to the accuracy of the information given by the individual authors.


Please respect the time and efforts of those who have written these messages. The copyright status of these messages is unclear at this time. If information is published from these messages, please give credit to the originator(s).


Thank you,

    Mark S. Harris                  AKA:  THLord Stefan li Rous

                                          Stefan at florilegium.org



From: vader at emil.csd.uu.se (ke Eldberg)

Date: 2 Nov 91 23:07:11 GMT

Organization: The Internet


William de Corbie greets the people of the Net!


I remember seeing some non-SCA royalty (Acre? Markland?) at Pennsic,

and hearing various comments about how they should be treated. Opinions

ranged from "They're just a bunch of jerks who couldn't hack it in the

SCA, so they formed their own group -- mostly so they could give

themselves all the titles they wanted", to "They are nice people,

very authentic, very courteous, an interesting group..."


The SCA is "the known world". We do not claim to be the whole world,

and I have no problem with royalty from "unknown" parts of the world.

Their titles should be honored according to what we know about their

meaning. If we call someone "His majesty of the Kingdom of Acre", or

"Sir Beowulf Burger of/from the Kingdom of Acre", we are not giving

them SCA rank, while maintaining diplomatic courtesies. They are

simply foreigners from a little-known part of the world.


Some people at Pennsic seemed to think that we should not recognize

the non-SCA titles at all, and that the foreign royalty should not

have been received in court. I think we are so big that we can

afford to be generous to other groups with similar interests.

It's a test of our courtesy that we are able to admit that there *are*

other medieval groups who have the same right to exist as we do, and

with whom we might enjoy a fruitful exchange of knowledge. I see no

point in being annoyed at them for not joining our particular version

of the Middle Ages -- and that's the only real reason I can see for

wanting to refuse and ignore them.


Whether it's in good taste to march in at an SCA event and claim royal

rank, without having been invited as such by the SCA royalty, is a

different matter. I think it's presumptous and bad manners. (I'm

not sure whether this was really what happened at Pennsic.)


Of course, recognition of titles only applies when these people are

with us explicitly as foreign visitors, e.g. an embassy that comes to

a particular event. If they are also active on a regular basis in the

SCA, then I don't think that their ranks & titles should have any

weight here. If someone went around at an SCA event presenting himself

as "Prince so-and-so" of this or that other group, I would probably ask

him whether he had been invited by the ruling SCA monarchs, or if he was

an official ambassador from his group -- and if not, I would ask him to

stop using his foreign title.





From: whheydt at pbhya.PacBell.COM (Wilson Heydt)

Date: 1 Nov 91 22:56:46 GMT

Organization: Pacific * Bell, San Ramon, CA


With respect to the recent thread on how to treat visitors wh have

titles matching SCA titles, but from other organizations (including

countries . . .) . . .


I suggest that proper treatment is to treat such people as if their

titles were awarded in the SCA--so long as they are visitors to our

events.  If they wish to become part of the SCA, then they would leave

behind such titles as they had from elsewhere and earn titles the same

way that every member of the SCA does.


That is to say--if Elizabeth, Queen of England visits the Kingdom of

the West, she should be accorded Sovreign Honors and be treated with

all the pomp, deference, and honor that the title brings, plus that

due to a visiting monarch.  Should Elizabeth "Windsor" join an SCA

branch in her native land, she would be assumed to be an untitled

person of gentle birth--as are all in the Society--and if she wished

to become a Sovereign Queen, she would have to take up arms and fight

for that honor herself (if she were willing to 'settle' for Consort,

she'd have to find someone to fight for her.  I wonder how good

Phillip is with a stick . . . ?).




        Hal Ravn, Province of the Mists, West Kingdom

        Wilson H. Heydt, Jr.,  Albany, CA 94706, 415/524-8321 (home)



From: storm at hlafdig.stonemarche.ORG (Arastorm the Golden)

Date: 6 Nov 91 15:49:47 GMT

Organization: The Internet


From Arastorm to the Rialto: Greetings:

        Time for another history lesson! (scip on a bit, brother Maynard...)

        In the Reigns of Aelfwine and Arastorm of the East and

Nicholas can der Nort and Suny of the Kingdom of Acre a treaty

was made between the East and Acre (from MSR: Medieval Studies

and Recreation).

        This treaty was written in  three parts

(unfortunately, since we passed it on, I can't give you the

exact wording, but this is what I remember) each written as

a medieval statement, but with modern implications:


        First, all soverign honors would be given to the Crown of

Acre, and the titles and estates of their peoples would be

recognised by the Crown of the East.

        (this meant that the Knights of Acre would be allowed

to use that title in the SCA when there as knights of Acre*)

        Second, there would be no taxes, tolls nor hinderance at our

mutual borders between our citizens traveling either way.

        (this means that when there is a discount given to SCA members

for an event, proof of MSR membership would get the discount as well.)

        Third, the citizens of each kingdom would be bounden by the

laws in the kingdom where they were visiting.

        (this means that each person would have to keep the rules of

the group who sponsored the event- from armor standards, & rules of the

list, to flashbulb and coke can rules.)


        This was a fairly historic document, since up to then, other

medieval groups had been looked on as "evil twins" of the SCA- both the

SCA "spin-offs" for example MSR, Far Isles, and Norseland, and those

which separatly, like Markland. Many of these groups did (and do) indeed

play with the SCA as well as at their own events (who has not heard of

the Tuchuks?), but, as has been noted in this discussion on the Rialto,

many people in the SCA had negative feelings about letting them come -

even if they did follow SCA rules while at SCA events (and which some

were not always cooperative about).


        TMs Nicholas and Suny agreed with us that this kind of divisiveness

was great foolishness. (Of course, the was not a universal opinion.) What

we are doing is not so very different, and whatever the feelings which started

the various spin offs (and we will admit that there were very bad feelings

when the the people who created MSR left the SCA to do so), since the

vast majority of the people who had joined since then knew nothing of

the original problems (or, at least, it was not personal with them), it

would be silly to promolgate old bad feelings, and not get on with it.


        For example, in the MSR the requirements for knighthood are

somewhat easier to complete than they are in the East- but this puts

their knights in a more realistic social position. Each has it's advantages,

and obviously we prefer ours otherwize we would change it. Other differences

are similar. My observation is that most differences between the SCA

and most of the other recreation groups is that they have much smaller

time frames, and therefore the possibility of greater internal accuracy.

However, our size and loose framework make our events appealing to

their members- not always, but occationally. (Pennsic is a unique experience

which any historical combattant wants to share in- we are lucky we don't

get Rev War reinactors crashing it.)


        *In fact, there are (in my observation) many people who have

memberships in both MSR and SCA and while they use the same names and

devices (good heraldry is good heraldry, and it's hard to get your

friends to call you Kirstin and Magdaline the next) they don't generally

ask to use their MSR ranks at SCA events. Problems can arise when, for

example, a person in MSR gets their arms passed and makes a lovely

heraldic banner, robe, etc. (as a Crusader era group, they have a lot of

lovely heraldic display), and comes to the SCA where our heralds notice

that the arms they are displaying were recently given to some other SCA

person. It was our intention that we could encourage the groups to work

together to avoid such problems- after all, the college of heralds of

the SCA is an incredible resource, but one can see how they wouldn't want

to invest time in checking on the arms of people who might not come to

SCA events more than once or twice.


        Recently (I was told by some MSR folk- I think their Queen) the

SCA BoD made a ruling that the SCA won't acknowledge any other groups

of recreationists. I think this is to avoid the complications I was

talking about (can you imagine the amount of work involved in trying

to process all the heraldry for all the various medieval groups everywhere?

Wo!) On the other hand, this means that even when the East is running the

War, they can't honor the treaty by letting in MSR folk at the same

rate as SCA folk, and the East and Acre have been ratifying that same

treaty off and on for the last 10 years. (currently "on") This is

another case of the BoD claiming that they butt out of the medieval

aspect of the game, while actually intruding. I suppose they would say

that petty little kings and queens have no right to make decisions

which involve finance, but what we were trying to do was important,

and I think it went a long way to healing the breach between the East

and Acre. (What the BoD did to the Far Isles is another story, and

we couldn't heal that- let's just say that it ended with Baroness

Heloisa dropping a tea bag in Boston Harbor (England) and keeping a

good 50 people who were recruited for the SCA by Baron Patri from

becoming an SCA barony.)


        To return to the current discussion, I will recount an incident

from our reign. In our understanding a Vice-Roy was the person who

stood in for the King when the King wasn't in the Capitol. He was kind

of a replacement Baron who did everything a Baron did for a barony,

but when the King was there, he was nothing. For many reigns(Angus,

Akbar, Murad, etc.) the King of the East had been from the Crown Province,

so this was fine. (To put this all into perspective, you must remember

that during this period, the East consisted of Murkwode, Bhakail, Coill

Ohrda (a shire in NJ), the Nameless Province, Barony Beyond the Mountain,

and Carolingia. Events did not overlap. Indeed, if Carolingia had a

fighting practice or dance practice, the King might well show up. Things

were different then. Kingdom events might pull in as many as 60 to 80

people.) But by the time we got on the throne, the Crown Province had

been functioning fairly independantly for some time, and even when

the Crown did live in 0stgard (Aidan and Setanta or Sigfried and Wanda)

Ian of Clan Mitchel and Katherine fulfilled all the duties that one would

expect of a baron, so we decided to make them Court Baron and Baroness

so that they would have rank of their own. Now at this same time we had

been talking to Nicholas and Suny about healing the breach between MSR

and the SCA, and so when they showed up at the Ostgardr event we were

thrilled and invited them up to sit with us. I think that this was the

first instance of an SCA Crown (at least an eastern one) <let's see,

this would have been March of `82> invited the Crown of a forign power

to sit with them. We thought that since the people who had started MSR

were mostly from 0stgardr, this would be seen as a fine gesture. Little

did we know that we were almost assasinated that night by people who

thought that we had pre-arranged this with the Crown of Acre to insult

the people of 0stgardr. (apparently the bad feelings between Acre and

the SCA were *focused* in 0stgardr, not milder there) This was made

worse because we did not invite the Vicroy and Vicereign to sit with

us (well why would we? they had no special rank until we gave it them

that night.)


        Anyway, so you see how these things come about. If there is

one thing I would like everyone to know, it is that the King and Queen

are not omnicient. Sure they TRY to find out everything pertinent-

but often fail. Even I who have been there keep forgetting it. So I

keep reminding you.


        At any rate- in the East, at least, there is a treaty which

requires the Crown to accord the soverign honors to the people of Acre

when they visit the East, and to allow those who choose to visit us

from Acre in their persona for Acre to use the rank and titles they

have earned there. Luckily the East does not have sumptuary laws

which would cause difficulty with these visitors. (I am still collecting

sumptuary laws, and still hope for reports on AnTir, Trimaris, Outlands,

Atenveldt, and Ansteorra) I do wonder if there are other medieval

recreation groups which have spun off from other kingdoms, or is the

East the only kingdom which breeds the type who becomes dissatisfied

with the level of authenticity in the SCA and goes off to start a tighter



<the end>

Formatting copyright © Mark S. Harris (THLord Stefan li Rous).
All other copyrights are property of the original article and message authors.

Comments to the Editor: stefan at florilegium.org