[Ansteorra] Info in the Florilegium on the newcomer's questions

Mark.S Harris mark.s.harris at motorola.com
Wed Nov 21 09:16:46 PST 2001

Count Timo replied to a newcomer's questions with:
> >a. almost exclusively, a knight in the time period
> >which the SCA recreates, had to own a horse and had to
> >be able to field that horse - it was one of the
> >primary distinguishing characteristics of being a
> >knight -
> In general, yes, very correct. Of course this ranges from a wealthy
> land-owning noble with many horses, retainers, squires, etc, to the pauper
> knight who literally used a plow horse from his fields.
> >Should this not be the case in a organization with so
> >many people placing such an emphasis on being period.
> >Should not knighthood be conferred only on those who
> >have the finances and the other means to OWN and field
> >a horse?
> There has been that arguement in the past. You might want to read a little
> on the history of the SCA to see what proposals and ideas have been hashed
> out in the past, as well as some of the reasons the SCA has developed it's
> unique social structure. H.L. Stefan's Florigium is an excellent place to
> find what amounts to a FAQ of the SCA.  I think I'm mispelling it but the
> website is www.florigium.com (could someone verify this please?). Whether or
> not the SCA is an organization that stresses an emphasis on being period is
> another discussion.

Thank you Timo, for the referance to the Florilegium. You're closer
than manyon the spelling of it, and besides you got my name and
title correct. :-)

For those who aren't familar with it, the Florilegium is a collection
of around 1400 different files on a wide variety of SCA and medieval
subjects. One thing I like to collect is the personal recollections of
SCA history. I think it is important to get some of this stuff down
while the folks involved are still around to give it. While I try to
stay away from documenting the current SCA political ruckus (whatever
it is) there are some comments on previous ones and how this has
affected the Society.

The Florilegium is at: http://www.florilegium.org  and I would look
in the SCA-INC and SCA-STORIES sections for info on this subject.

> >That way the title of knight (which is
> >supposedly a highly respected title in the SCA) would
> >remain truly special. The rest could be given the rank
> >of master of arms - which is what they would be if
> >they earn the title.

As others have pointed out, the definition of Knighthood and what
it took to achieve it varied from place to place and across the
time span that the SCA studies. For a bit more on this and comments
on Knighthood within the SCA, check this file in the CHIVALRY
section of the Florilegium:
knighthood-msg    (34K)  6/29/00    Knighthood in SCA and period.

> >b. Also, Many have witnessed some enter the crown
> >tournaments who do not have the financial means or
> >time , etc. to fulfill the obligations required and
> >yet they are allowed to participate by giving their
> >word that they do.

> I agree there are many people who enter Crown not realizing the strain it
> can take, both emotionally and financially.

This is correct. Being Crown often means an enormous outlay of
energy, time and money. This has cost folks anything from burnout
in the SCA, to having to replace vehicles run into the ground, to
divorces. However, little of this is due to explicit requirements
of the job, but rather the Crown wanting to be the best Crown they
can be.

There are past US presidents who said they didn't realize the
strain that being president could take on them, both emotionally
and financially, too.

The best I can do is make available the comments by past Crowns
on what it takes to be Crown, so those thinking of taking this
on, can at least know what they are getting into. Check these
files in the SCA-INC section:
crown-cost-msg    (24K)  4/20/00    The monetary and other costs of
being a
                                       crown in the SCA.
   (and if any past Crowns want to add their comments about this,
please do, either on this list or by email).

SCA-royalty-msg   (29K)  4/ 3/01    SCA Royalty and what they should be.

> Some of these participants AND
> >OTHERS have even used their influence to get
> >themselves and their friends recognition (awards)
> >which have not been earned.

Probably. I've wondered about a number of people myself. However,
the thing to keep in mind is that you may not be seeing the whole
picture. Much of the service to the Kingdom and to the Society is
done unseen, behind the scenes. Try not to do things because you
think it will get you an award. Do them because you enjoy doing
them or you think it would be helpful/useful to the Society.

> >Where is the HONOR AND
> >NOBILITY in this? And why is there not a means to both
> >stop and rectify these situations when they arise?
> There is. The Crown has the final determination of who gets what award as
> well as who is able to enter Crown Tourney.

And whose definition of HONOR and NOBILITY do we use? The exact
of these will vary from person to person. We tend to concentrate our
in our Crowns, for good and bad. Like the rest of us, the Crowns are
only human and will make mistakes.

What we are as a Society, as the SCA, also varies from individual to
individual. The SCA is not a re-enactment group, nor is it a fantasy
group. The SCA draws upon the real historical reality of the European
Middle Ages as well as the Victorian ideals about those times with a
mixture of the 1960s culture and today's ideals thrown in.

For more on what the SCA really is, and peoples opinions of this,
check some of the files in the SCA-SOCIOLOGY section such as:
A-Peer-Within-art  (7K)  6/ 5/00    "A Peer Within" by Constance de
Fndng-T-Dream-art  (7K)  5/27/00    "Finding The Dream" by Colin of
magic-moments-msg (41K)  2/ 3/00    "Magic moments" experienced in the
SCA-as-family-msg (24K) 11/28/99    Sometimes the SCA is more like
SCA-reasons-msg   (32K)  2/ 5/96    The reasons various people joined
the SCA.
SCA-The-Dream-msg (50K)  1/11/96    What the SCA means for different
The-Blow-art       (8K)  9/ 1/00    "The Blow Which Did Not Fall"
                                       by HL William McNaughton.

I hope this is of use.

THLord Stefan li Rous
stefan at texas.net

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