Wed, 14 Jul 2004 14:22:51 -0500
Subject: [SCA-AS] Links: "Modern Medieval" and Historical Peerage (and Elevation Ceremonies)

Greetings my faithful readers.

This week's Links List is about SCA Elevations ceremonies....something I have scarcely paid attention to before, despite already having a peerage, since it was administered as a sneak attack! It occurs to me that there are many folks who might suddenly need information to hand on the topic (myself included). Feel free to save this information somewhere, and pass it along wherever it is needed. Knowledge is KING, especially in this situation, since Candidates usually have little time to prepare for elevation. Please also keep the Medieval Oaths Links List ("I Swear" was the title, from a few weeks ago), as this is another bit of information that will come in handy for elevation.

There are few institutions in the SCA that generate more misunderstanding than that of the Peerage (well, maybe the general population misunderstands Royalty more, but that estate is somewhat fleeting whereas Peerage is more or less permanent). There seems to be a wealth information about ceremonies and Peerishness out there on the web, more than you will find here in this list. I hope you find some of this helpful, and I apologise to those of you who are NOT SCA, as this particular list is decidedly SCA-centric.


Dame Aoife Finn of Ynos Mon, OL
Canton of Riverouge
Barony of the Endless Hills
(Site Excerpt) This section contains the "standard" ceremony for admittance of a new member, the alternate for a Spokesperson, a ceremony to let the populace know that a member will be admitted at a future date, and a ceremony to acknowledge a new member who was admitted at a point in the

The Feudal Contract: On Fealty in the SCA
(Site Excerpt) One of the major dividing lines is "fealty." In the SCA, we use something that we call "fealty," but there seems to be a great deal of misunderstanding about it .... many people seem to think that "liege-fealty" is the only "real" kind .... so why do we allow "Masters of Arms" and other non-fealty swearing Peers?

Peerage Regalia
(see photos of Peerage Regalia form the East Kingdom)

Knights and Squires in the Society for Creative Anachronism
In their own words
by Duke Finnvarr de Taahe, Knight
(Site Excerpt)
What can squires reasonably expect from their knights?
What can knights reasonably expect from their squires?
What is reasonable to expect from a long-distance knight-squire relationship?
If a squire no longer fights, what does that mean for the relationship?
If a squire is knighted, what does that mean for the relationship? I also
urged people to contribute anything they thought was important. Attached are some of the answers I received. I found them very interesting, and hope that you readers will also find them so.

Tournaments Illuminated Topic Index
See: The Privilege of Peerage: Adapting the 11/12th Century Welsh 'Breint Teilo' as an SCA Scroll Text by Tangwystyl verch Morgant Glasvryn, A Period Laurel Ceremony by Deirdre O'Siodhachain, Peers Errant by Carriadoc of the Bow at, A Mirror of Knighthood by College of Sciences of Caid, The First Order of the Laurel by Frederic Feolildwyn, Incipit: Criteria for Knighthood by Jon de Cles, and To Be A Peer of the Realm (article not attributed).

Modar's Heraldry Website: Protocol
Articles, links and resources on areas the SCA Protocol Herald may need to know.

The Ceremonies of Homage and Fealty
>From Lyttelton's "Tenures" (c.1480) and Three Historical Examples
(Site Excerpt) "Homage is the most honorable service, and most humble service of reverence, that a franktenant1 may do to his lord. For when the tenant shall make homage to his lord, he shall be ungirt, and his head uncovered, and his lord shall sit, and the tenant shall kneel before him on both his knees, and hold his hands jointly together between the hands of his lord, and shall say thus: 'I become your man from this day forward [of life and limb, and of earthly worship,] and unto you shall be true and faithful, and bear to you faith for the tenements that I claim to hold of you, saving the faith that I owe to our sovereign lord the king'; and then the lord, so sitting, shall kiss him.

Some Thoughts on the Qualifications for the Peerage
(Mostly Knighthood, but also the Laurel and the Pelican)
Version 2.2 (5 Feb 2000)
by Sir Wiglaf Wilfriding
(Site Excerpt) There is no such thing as a closed text or final word on this topic: many people will certainly disagree with a much that is said herein. I do not claim to be a majority opinion, nor do I speak for any group of other peers. My goal is simply to help people to understand what I look for when I consider someone for the peerage, to make people think and consider, and I hope that many people will be inspired to respond or react to some of the ideas I present. I also freely admit that not all of the ideas presented are original ones of mine. I can't give real credit out, either, dozens if not hundreds of people have influenced my thoughts on the matter in different ways.

Lochac: New Laurels' Guide To The Galaxy
(Site Excerpt) Some people, in addition to being members of the Laurel, have been admitted to the Orders of the Chivalry or the Pelican. Such people are colloquially referred to as "double Peers" or "triple Peers". Unfortunately, this usage can leave a "single Peer" feeling embarrassed, degraded and devalued. However, a Peer is a Peer is a Peer. Someone who belongs to two or more Orders has no more "power" or "prestige" than someone who is "only" a member of one Order. All Peers are equal in rank, status, authority and responsibility, whether they have been a Peer for one year or twenty, and whether they belong to one Order or to three.
Traps for New Peers: All too often, when a new Peer is made, they can go through a period of soul-searching and some stress associated with their elevation. This section is intended to help you over any of these hurdles, and come to terms with your new role as quickly and as painlessly as possible.

SCA Al-Baran General Requirements for the Elevation to the Peerage
(Site Excerpt)
Candidates for any order conferring a Patent of Arms must meet the following minimum criteria. Additional requirements may be set by law and custom in each kingdom as deemed appropriate and necessary by the Crown.
They shall have been obedient to the governing documents of the Society and the laws of the kingdom.
They shall have consistently shown respect for the Crown of the kingdom.
They shall have set an example of courteous and noble behavior suitable to a peer of the realm.
They shall have demonstrated support for the aims and ideals of the Society by being as authentic in dress, equipment and behavior as is within their power.
They shall have shared their knowledge and skills with others.
They shall have practiced hospitality according to their means and as appropriate to the circumstances.
They shall have made every effort to learn and practice those skills desirable at and worthy of a civilized court. To this end they should have some knowledge of a wide range of period forms, including by not limited to literature, dancing, music, heraldry, and chess, and they should have some familiarity with combat as practiced in the Society.
They should participate in Society re-creations of several aspects of the culture of the Middles Ages and Renaissance.

Knighting Ceremony of Nigel the Byzantine
(Site Excerpt)
The Knighting shall begin at 2:00 in the afternoon. Everyone shall assemble in the Lady Chapel, with the Crowns seated on thrones in front of the Altar. When everyone is assembled and the Candidate is ready, Court shall be opened in the usual way.
Herald:Your Majesty, His Imperial Highness, Sir Fran?ois de Coucy, has business before You.
Crown: Please come forward, Your Highness.
Sir Fran?ois shall come before the Crown, and say:
Fran?ois:Your Majesty, on behalf of the Chivalry of the Empire, I beg to inform you that our numbers are not complete. There is one who by his deeds and his demeanour has the right to a place in our company, a place he has deserved for quite some time.

West Kingdom Packet for New Member of the Chivalry
(Sit Excerpt) You've been asked to join the Order of Chivalry (or you were"surprised" and are already a member). What does it all mean? What does being a peer mean? What rights do you have that you didn't have before? What responsibilities? This handout is designed to help answer these questions.
(See also Laurel packet: and
Pellican packet: See also:
New Peer Packets and Peerage Ceremonies at which also conytains packets for new Royal Peers and ceremonies).

The List of Alternate Titles
as approved by the College of Arms
July 1994 with changes approved March 1998
(Site Excerpt) Estonian,Albanian, Hungarian, Turkish, etc...

Stefan's Florilegium:
Messages on History of SCA peerages
A-Peer-Within-art (Article by Constance de la Rose
(click, then SCA Socieology. Article Excerpt)The secret (as with most secrets) comes from within. Watch the best of the peers carefully and you can see what makes them different. Watch carefully, for the best just do it naturally. No need to flaunt it for, to them, this is just the way things are and should be.
(See also
Knighthood message) Both historically and in the SCA, courtliness has _always_ been considered one of the components of chivalry. The virtues of chivalry include prouesse (prowess), franchise (noble bearing), largesse (generosity), and courtoisie (courtliness). NB: The last term is not properly translated by the modern word "courtesy," though it includes some elements of the modern and SCA concepts covered by that word. These virtues are described in every treatise on chivalry that I have encountered, dating back to the 12th century.

Caid College of Herlads: Elevation of a Duke and Duchess
(Site Excerpt)
It should be ascertained beforehand the titles the new Duke and Duchess wish to use: Duc, Herzog, etc.; and these should be substituted for "Duke" and "Duchess" in the Ceremony, where appropriate.
May it please Your Majesty, Your loyal subject, His Most Noble Grace, Duke (New Duke), having by his valor, skill and strength at arms twice won the Crown of this Kingdom, and thus, of his own ability, having earned the title and estate of a Duke of this Realm, makes bold to approach you, that he may receive the Royal Accolade and be invested with the dignities of his high office.

Midrealm Order of the Laurel Apprentice Ceremony
(Site Excerpt) " At this court the Lady grants to Isabel Moundoughter a virgate of land which was held of our forefathers to have and to hold said virgate of land in villeinage to historical re-creation according to the custom of the manor, doing for it all the customs and services in everything just as the aforesaid Isabel is accustomed to do.'" [The apprentice comes forward and the laurel extends a rod (the verge). The apprentice holds one end while the laurel holds the other.]

Viking-flavored Peerage Ceremony ? 1992 Josh Mittleman (Arval Benicoeur) and Carolyn Priest-Dorman (??ra Sharptooth)
(Site Excerpt--Notes on Thora's elevation to the Laurel) The general form of the ceremony is a lawsuit brought by Master Huginn Hrothgeirsson, speaking as ??ra's master, against the King and Queen of the East. He accuses the royalty of being remiss in their customary duty by failing to elevate ??ra to the peerage, as is her due. He calls witnesses to speak on her behalf and a jury of Companions of the Laurel rules in her favor. The Crown offers no defense, admits its error, and remedies its omission forthwith. This proceeding closely parallels the standard ceremony in both form and symbolism. Master Huginn plays the same part as the spokesman of the Order who begs the boon. The witnesses are the peers from each order who speak for her qualifications. As in all awards, the Crown has already consulted the order, so the consultation of the jury is a formality.

The Pelican Elevation Ceremony (PDF file)