[ANSTHRLD] Zodiacus weighs in on this week's award discussions

-=The Seamus theseamus at gmail.com
Fri Sep 10 10:53:46 PDT 2004

Well I will chime in on the bit about the sable shield....

Master Modius and I wrote the text.. and it does state that it is a
edict and that it is non armergious....

And to agree with alden... 

When a King turns to you and says...

"I need to come up with something right now because I want to."

You just do it...

Not saying that this is the case with the Optio's but in the case of
the sable shield is the way that occurred...

I'd be Glad to answer any further questions on it if needed....


----- Original Message -----
From: Jay Rudin <rudin at ev1.net>
Date: Fri, 10 Sep 2004 12:37:50 -0500
Subject: Re: [ANSTHRLD] Zodiacus weighs in on this week's award discussions
To: "Heralds List, Kingdom of Ansteorra - SCA,Inc." <heralds at ansteorra.org>

Alden wrote:
> Any and all awards, be they existing, or made up on the spot, are
> completely within the authority of the Crown to give as they please. 
> Of course it is a good idea for the Crown to consult with Their
> heralds, but I don't think it's a requirement.  

Nobody denies that.  Nobody has suggested that the Crown didn't have
the right to do this.  However, actions have consequences, and it is
the responsibility of the heralds to consider the consequences of
heraldic actions.  That's what we're doing.

> I don't recall reading anywhere that an award *has* to be proposed,
> conflict checked, authenticated, approved by the CoA, etc., before it is used. 

I think Corpora is unclear on this point, but some people think that,
yes, an award cannot be used until it has been passed.  If so,
Ansteorra has ignored this rule for years.

> In my mind (and feel free to correct me if I'm wrong), the creation of
> an award isn't that different from the Crown elevating someone to a
> peerage order.  Yes, there is generally the whole discussion by the
> specific circle of the candidate to be elevated, and a poll may be
> taken, but ultimately it is the authority of the Crown to elevate
> someone, not the order.  The order can't veto the Crown's decision
> if they go against the order's poll.  

None of which anybody has denied, and none of which is relevant to the
issues being discussed.

> Granted, it doesn't do wonders for the Crown's image to go against the wishes of Their people, but they do have that right.  It's not a democracy.

Yes, the Crown makes the final decision.  That does *not* relieve
heralds of the responsibility to understand what happens, form policy,
and work to improve Ansteorran heraldic decisions.  Using the peerage
example, the Crown makes the final decision about who receives a
peerage.  I still have the responsibility to watch potential Laurels
and Pelicans, to evaluate them, to advise the Crown, and do try to
make things better when the Crown makes one who is believed to be

> Yes, there is a minimalist trend towards awards in Ansteorra, but it is a trend, not a rule.

Not quite.  It's a system, not a trend.  Grant level kingdom orders
and baronial AoA-level orders are groups of people.  AoA level awards
are rewards with no specific continuing duties.  This isn't a mere
trend, but a fixed policy that goes back to the creation of Grant
level orders in Ansteorra in early 1980.  (Note that the Iris and Star
were created in late 1979, and the White Scarf precursor was created
in the Prinicpality in March 1979, but they were advance to Grant
level orders by King Lloyd and Queen Joselyn in 1980.)  The system has
been kept to ever since.  When the Comet was created, it was an award,
not a order, because the members aren't a group bound together like a
baronial order, but people from all over, awarded for work in
different shires.

[And for the record, it's not minimalist.  We have more awards and
orders than most SCA kingdoms, and significantly more than the British
Empire.  Many heralds in the Known World considered Ansteorra to be
excessively award-happy.)

> Something I'm more confused/surprised about goes back one
> reign to Miguel and Conal, who created the Award of the Sable
> Shield.  This award is given for a MUNDANE reason, and has
> nothing to do with anything done in the Society.  I don't recall
> anyone saying anything about this award.  Maybe because it
> was created at a time we were all feeling rather patriotic towards
> our country (that being the UNITED STATES OF AMERICA), but
> there it is.

A. Star is exactly correct here.  No they didn't create an award. 
They stated, every time they gave it out, that this was *not* an
Ansteorran award, just a thank you.  Its name is not registered; it is
not intended to be (and will not be) carried on the OP.
B. If it had been an award, it would have been reasonably consistent
with the system, which includes the occasional ad hoc non-armigerous
award, like the Rising Star.  But there have never been AoA
kingdom-level orders before.  The Glove, Gauntlet, Crane, Thistle,
Compass Rose and Comet have no duties, and are not defined groups.

So, yes, it's important to remember that the Crown makes the final
decision.  We will nonetheless continue to discuss heraldic actions
and their consequences.

Robin of Gilwell / Jay Rudin

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Lord Seamus O Dubhda
Kingdom Of Anestorra
Barony Of Elfsea
"No matter where you go there you are." -B. Banzai

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