[Ansteorra-archery] authorization

Ken Theriot kentheriot at ravenboymusic.com
Tue Sep 30 16:14:38 PDT 2008



I agree with all you said!  I'm glad you're one of the ones who authorized
me (Ironwyrm's name is on it, but the two of you were my "approving


I wanted to let everyone on this list know that I will do all I can to be a
liaison between the non-missile heavies and us.  I don't do anything but CA
in melee unless the King asks me to, or CA is not allowed.  It is the only
thing that has made melee fun for me, since I seem not to have inherited the
right "situational awareness" from my knight to do otherwise;).  I always
tell our King and commanders that I am more useful to them as an archer than
as anything else.if numbers of dead enemy is anything to go by:-).


I also think there is a lot we could do to grow the CA community, and was
hoping my post could be a start.  Someone on the chiv list forwarded one of
the posts about authorization requirements and said it was potentially a
problem that it required "2 marshals and a minimum of 2 archery events."
Obviously he was mistaken, but that was how he interpreted the post.  I
thought that if he could interpret it that way, others might too.  And I
wanted to just clarify (both to the chiv list) and to this list what the
requirements actually are, just to avoid any possible erroneous conclusions.


Anyway.I stand ready to help in any way I can!  I am giving a CA class at
Jaegermeister (when it gets rescheduled), and intend to start building a
corps of archers down here to play with Rhoadd and the Bryn-Gwlad War
Company.  There SEEMS to be great interest, especially in the San Marcos and
Austin areas.  We'll see.  A guy can dream can't he?:).







From: Eadric Anstapa [mailto:eadric at scabrewer.com] 
Sent: Tuesday, September 30, 2008 5:49 PM
To: Archery within the Kingdom of Ansteorra
Subject: Re: [Ansteorra-archery] authorization


Sir Kenneth,

You are correct that when someone can demonstrate the necessary requirements
then they should be authorized.

There is no hard and fast rule that it should take X-plus events.  I have
authorized folks at a single event because they came prepared and I felt I
had all the time I needed to adequately evaluate them.

There is no hard and fast rule that it has to be at one of our large melee
events.  I have authorized folks at a single local melee practice I have
authorized folks at a single event because they came prepared and I felt I
had all the time I needed to adequately evaluate them.

A great deal depends on how prepared the person wanting to be authorized is.
I believe that is a large part of what the folks below were trying to
communicate.  There is a lot that an a person can do in advance to assure
that their authorization sessions go as swiftly and smoothly as possible.

I think very few rapier or armored fighters would show up at their very
first practice and expect to be authorized right then.  You learn things a
little at a time and you build the body of knowledge necessary for you to be
authorized.  It takes some time for the marshal to adequately evaluate the
individual. More often than not the marshal can not dedicate all of their
time on any given day to evaluating the individual since they usually have
other duties to attend to as well.

As long as individual knows what they need to know and can demonstrate what
they need to demonstrate and has the opportunity to get all of that across
to an authorizing marshal then they should be authorized.  But it is always
the discretion of the the authorizing marshal that we count on.

Some marshals are more discerning than others, some are more free, some are
more circumspect and cautious.   I have had the unpleasant task of having to
revoke authorizations for marshals and archers who were clearly hastily
authorized.  I am also aware that when I authorize someone I am testifying
that I have properly evaluated them and found them safe and ready for combat
and keenly aware that it is my name that goes on their authorization card
showing that I authorized them and if they subsequently screw up then that
can  reflect directly on me and my ability as a marshal.  

I am also aware that while in Ansteorra combat archery generally has good
support from the greater combat community, that is not true in other
kingdoms.  The are many in other kingdoms that look quite hard for any
excuse to try and make a case to simply do away with combat archery
society-wide.  I  want to do everything that I can to make sure that such
excuses do not come from simple and honest mistakes from hastily authorized
Ansteorran combat archers.

Therefore I think I am probably one of the more cautious and circumspect
authorizing marshals out there.  However if you come prepared, know your
stuff, and convince me of that then you get authorized.

Many other kingdoms have are much more strict in their CA authorization
requirements.  Most other kingdoms require that folks first get a basic
armored combat sword and board style authorization before moving on to
additional weapons like CA where we do not.  Other kingdoms require multiple
marshals be present to evaluate the individual where we do not.  Other
kingdoms require that a member of the chivalry be present to evaluate the
individual where we do not.

To quote from the Marshals Handbook of one of the other Gulf War Kingdoms
"The authorization process is one of the most important safeguards in SCA
fighting.  It must be taken seriously."  I don't think it can be said much
more succinctly than that.



Ken Theriot wrote: 

About the difficulty of getting authorized as a combat archer.....
I think we are making it too long and cumbersome a process.  In January we
had a few folks very interested in getting authorized.  But there weren't
any authorizing marshals in our area (Bjornsborg).  Someone even said to one
of these hopeful gentles..."good luck getting authorized...it's almost
impossible."  That really got me wondering why this should be.  
So at Red Tape, I spoke with Sir Jean-Paul (kingdom Earl Marshal), and
Fearghus (kingdom missile marshal at the time) about how I could become an
authorizing CA marshal.  I was already an authorizing heavy-weapons marshal
and an authorized combat archer.  Fearghus told me what he wanted me to do
and know, and a couple of months later, I received my authorization as a CA
authorizing Marshal.  At least now there is someone in our area.
Part of the discussion we had at Red Tape included finding out exactly what
the actual requirements were for CA authorization.  This is what we found.
The current written requirements for authorization (as found in the SCA
"Marshal Handbook" and "The Missile Combat Rules") are:
"Combat Archers shall be authorized to participate by the marshallate,
following established marshallate procedures. During this authorization all
Combat Archers must show:
a. That they are familiar with the Rules of the Lists, the SCA Missile
Combat Rules, and all the rules and conventions of combat pertaining to
missile combat in their Kingdom.
b. That they can recognize and accept a killing blow.
c. That they are safe to themselves and their opponents.
d. That they can keep their bow out of the way during combat.
e. That they have an awareness of spectator safety."
If someone can demonstrate understanding of and compliance to the above,
they should be authorized.  It shouldn't have to take 2 or more melee events
unless the person really needs the extra help.  But that should be the
exception rather than the rule.  Also, while it is certainly necessary to
observe a candidate in melee scenarios to ensure the SCA requirements are
met, it needn't be at one of the wars, such as Gothic, 3-Kings, BAM, etc.
In fact, authorizations may take place at official fighter practices (which
are, in fact, SCA sanctioned "events") as long as there is enough melee
activity to confirm the qualifications of the candidates.
I understand the need for caution to ensure we stay safe.  And with the
latest concerns about CA causing injuries on the field, it is especially
germane lately.  But SCA combat has always been a balance between safety and
participation.  As long as everyone is following the rules, and our marshals
are making sure they only authorize people who clearly understand and adhere
to them, I see no reason to add more barriers to entry into the CA
Our CA numbers are slim, and I believe that we need to do all we can to
increase those numbers, and encourage people to take up the bow by making it
as painless as possible.
As a member of the chivalry, I can tell you without question that Ansteorran
fighters across the board support and respect CA more than just about any
other kingdom out there!  As Centurion Caladin (the Ansteorran General)
recently posted here, we very much want to do anything we can to help build
the combat missile community in Ansteorra.  That includes physically helping
with arrow retro-fit, raising money to help defray the cost of retrofits,
including CA as an essential and fundamental part of our battle plans, etc.
Now is a great time to get folks excited about CA.  The more of us there
are, the more integral we will in melee tactics.  But it's hard to make us a
big part of the plan if there are only 15 of us in a fielded army of 300 or
I recommend we readdress the authorization issues as soon as possible.
Sir Kenneth
-----Original Message-----
From: William Black Dragon [mailto:hlironwyrm at sbcglobal.net] 
Sent: Saturday, September 27, 2008 12:05 AM
To: Archery within the Kingdom of Ansteorra
Subject: Re: [Ansteorra-archery] authorization
None of my combat arrows are currently legal, they need to be refitted, but
you are welcome to borrow some for practice.  I've chopped all my baldar
arrows down into combat bolts to make sure I had legal combat missiles for
Three Kings and am currently working on refitting 450+ combat bolts.  I
won't start refitting combat arrows until after we have finished refitting
all the combat bolts.
However just so you know the odds of getting authorized for combat archery
within six weeks are extremely slim, but possible if you can met several
To list a few of those basic qualifying factors:
- Do you already have a current fighter authorization?
- Do you have prior melee combat (battle) experience?
- Do you have your own combat legal armor?
- Do you have your own legal combat archery equipment?
- Are you familiar enough with the Ansteorran Complete Participant's  
  Handbook(especially section 6) to respond correctly when quizzed?
- Do you have a currently active knight marshal or combat archery 
  marshal whom would be willing to vouch for your combat skill 
If you are able to answer yes to five of the above questions there 
is a good chance we might be able to buddy you up with another 
combat archer at BAM for observation and possibly get 
authorized for combat archery afterward, however it usually 
requires at least two or more melee events before any combat 
archery authorizing marshal will sign off on any combat archery
authorization.  Starting this late a more realistic goal might 
getting authorized in combat archery by Gulf War. 
Don't get me wrong here, nothing delights us authorizing combat 
archery marshals more than getting another combat archer on the 
field.  But given the possibility for catastrophic injury that can 
happen with combat archery they are going to make sure any novice 
combat archer is well trained before they are ever allowed to roam 
the field alone.
It normally requires four times as long to get authorized for 
combat archery than whats required to become a melee fighter.  
Furthermore it's about four times as expensive to purchase the 
required equipment to be a combat archer than a melee fighter.  
Not to mention the cost of equipment maintenance and upgrades.
Now if you have read all of the above and are still interested 
in becoming a combat archer come see me Sunday at Steppes 
archery practice or contact me personally by email at the above 
address and we shall be delighted to get you started!  
--- On Fri, 9/26/08, Marlin and Amanda Stout
<mailto:ldcharles at sbcglobal.net> <ldcharles at sbcglobal.net>

From: Marlin and Amanda Stout  <mailto:ldcharles at sbcglobal.net>
<ldcharles at sbcglobal.net>
Subject: Re: [Ansteorra-archery] authorization
To: "Archery within the Kingdom of Ansteorra"

 <mailto:ansteorra-archery at lists.ansteorra.org>
<ansteorra-archery at lists.ansteorra.org>

Date: Friday, September 26, 2008, 4:10 PM
Crystal Lewis wrote:

I'm looking to get authorized for CA before BAM

and I wanted to find 

out if anyone in the Steppes/Elfsea area had some

combat arrows I 

could borrow to practice and possibly authorize with?

Or even someone 

in the area who makes and sells said arrows?
My bow is a youth-sized 30# bow. (I'm a weakling.)

Lady Gwen,
  I'm not in Steppes/Elfsea, so I can't help you
with arrows, But I can 
give you a bit of advice about those youth-sized bows.
Get your local CA marshal to check it's draw with a
regulation combat 
arrow. The listed draw weight on some of those youth bows
are the draw 
weigh with a youth arrow, not a full-sized one. I've
seen a few archers 
at Gulf who were surprised when their bows came in
over-limit when 
measured with the standard arrows. One lady I know had made
arrows for her bow, so that with them it'd be below the
limit. But with 
the standard ones it was way over (like 40+ lbs) and a
marshal can't 
assume it'll never be used with the standard ammo.
There are ways to reduce the draw weight a bit, and your AM
can help you 
with that, but it's best to know that and deal with it
before you get to 
the event.
Ld Charles MacKinnon
Marshal at Large
Bryn Gwlad


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