Society for Creative Anachronism
College of Arms
For the January 2002 meetings, printed March 23, 2002
To all the College of Arms and all others who may read this missive, from François Laurel, Zenobia Wreath, and Mari Pelican (twice over), health and good friendship.
The following is a table showing the status of Letters of Intent, Laurel Letters of Pend and Discussion, and Letters of Intent to Protect (instead of the traditional text listing). The header rows are the dates of the meetings that will consider them and the dates when commentary is due. The key follows.
|Wreath meeting||Jan 19||Feb 09||Mar 16 & 24||Apr 13||May 11||Jun 15 & 23|
|Pelican meeting||Jan 19||Feb 09||Mar 13 & 23||Apr 13||May 11?||Jun ? & 23|
|Comment by||too late||Mar 31||Apr 30|
|Reply/Respond by||Mar 31||Apr 30||May 31|
|LoIs being considered:|
|Æthelmearc||-||Oct 15||Nov 17||Dec 23||Jan 18||(Feb 15)|
|An Tir||Sep 27||Oct 26||Nov 29||Dec 28||Jan 25||(Feb 26)|
|Ansteorra||Sep 16||Oct 20||Nov 15||-||-||(Feb 17)|
|Artemisia||-||-||-||Dec 24||(Jan 27)||-|
|Atenveldt||Sep 01||Oct 01||Nov 01||Dec 01||-||Feb 01|
|Atlantia||Sep 17||Oct 22||Nov 16||Dec 17||Jan 18||(Feb 20)|
|Caid||Sep 22||Oct 20||Nov 02||Dec 01 &
|Calontir||-||Sep 28 P &
|Drachenwald||Sep 17||Oct 21||Nov 16||Dec 13||Jan 18||(Feb 15)|
|Ealdormere||-||-||-||-||Jan 28||Feb 18|
|East||-||-||-||Dec 02 &
|Lochac||Sep 18||Oct 20||Nov 15||Dec 15||-||(Feb 20)|
|Meridies||Sep 30||Oct 31||Nov 30||Dec 31||Jan 31||Feb 28|
|Middle||Sep 09||Oct 12||-||Nov 09 P &
|Jan 02||(Feb 08)|
|Outlands||Sep 28||Oct 17||Nov 17||Dec 17||Jan 17||Feb 17|
|Trimaris||Sep 28||-||-||Dec 28||(Jan 18)||(Feb 15)|
|West||Sep 17||-||Nov 23||Dec 26||Jan 27||(Feb 24)|
|Nebuly LoItP||-||-||-||-||Jan 25||-|
[Aug LoAR pends]
|-||Jan 31 P
[Nov LoAR] &
Month day: the date on the Letter of Intent, Letter of Pend and Discussion, or Letter of Intent to Protect.(Month day): for administrative reasons, this LoI has not yet been scheduled.Month day P: postponed due to postmark."-": no LoI is scheduled for that meeting from that kingdom.?: tentative.
Mar: the Wreath meeting was March 16, with a March 24 road show at An Tir Heraldic Symposium; the Pelican meeting was March 23, with a March 13 road show at Gulf Wars.
Jun: the Wreath meeting will be June 15; the Pelican meeting is unscheduled. The sovereigns plan the traditional road show on Sunday morning of Known World Heraldic Symposium, June 23.
Not all Letters of Intent may be considered when they are originally scheduled on this cover letter. The date of mailing of the LoI, date of receipt of the Laurel packet, or other factors may delay consideration of certain Letters of Intent. Additionally, some Letters of Intent received may not have been scheduled because the administrative requirements (receipt of the forms packet, receipt of the necessary fees, etc.) have not yet been met.
REMINDER: Until all administrative requirements are met, the letter may not be scheduled.
The major advantage to a table is that anyone interested in just one kingdom can look at a row to see when its items will be considered. (In the previous text form, they would have to scan all the text.) A lesser advantage is that the table is a little more compact than the text form. A disadvantage is that, as with any abbrev., the meaning may not be obvious to the first-time viewer.
I would like to hear comments on which form you find more useful: this table format or the previous text format. I would also like to hear of any ways to make either format more useful. My contact information: Tim McDaniel; 6805 Wood Hollow Dr Apt 212; Austin, TX 78731-3104; home: (512) 795-9668, e-mail: email@example.com; work: (512) 838-2408, firstname.lastname@example.org.
This month, Jaida bint Salim, on the Middle LoI, submitted the badge (Fieldless) A mullet per pale azure and vert. There were calls of conflict versus Eleanor Leonard's famous badge, (Tinctureless) A mullet of four points distilling a goutte, registered in April 1982. This led us to reconsider Eleanor Leonard's blanket letter of permission to conflict.
Because a tinctureless badge may be depicted in any tincture or combination of tinctures on any tincture or combination of tinctures, this badge occupies a large area of heraldic space and has a correspondingly large potential for conflict.
Over the years, there have been many requests for permission to conflict made of and given by Eleanor. In 1991, Eleanor Leonard presented the College of Arms with a blanket letter of permission to conflict reserving only the specific ways she intended to use the badge, so that she would not continue to be bothered by requests for permission to conflict.
In the September 1991 LoAR Cover Letter, the relevant portion of the letter was published with a call for discussion. In the January 1992 Cover Letter, Da'ud ibn Auda, then Laurel, did not accept it, giving reasons for not "customizing protection" that included not wanting to complicate the Administrative Handbook, the Armorial, and the lives of SCA heralds.
It is true that there would be problems with registering any arbitrary conditions a submitter might impose. However, one simple blanket permission was registered in 1997. The recent edition of the Administrative Handbook now provides for two simple types of blanket letters of permission in III.C.4, "Blanket Permission to Conflict", and Appendix D has a template "Blanket Permission to Conflict". Furthermore, even a more complicated blanket permission may be worth accepting. We will consider such exceptional letters on a case-by-case basis, balancing the costs of implementations of letters versus the benefits to submitters.
After confirming that Eleanor Leonard continues to stand by her letter, we are accepting her blanket letter of permission. She wrote that she places her badge only on the five colors, the two metals, or non-heraldic fields (plaid, for example), never on a divided field or fur. She also uses only those seven major heraldic tinctures for the mullet and goutte, never using a divided tincture or fur.
Therefore, there is permission to conflict for any armory with a primary charge that is not solidly one of the seven major tinctures (argent, Or, azure, gules, purpure, sable, and vert). As well, there is permission to conflict for any fielded armory (not fieldless) where the field is not solidly one of those seven major tinctures.
In other words: for permission to conflict, the primary charge and/or the field must use a divided tincture, a field treatment, or a fur.
To paraphrase Jaelle of Armida, then Laurel (for Lindorm Eriksson's blanket letter of permission, July 1997 LoAR): to make everyone aware of this permission, information about this blanket letter will be placed in the Armorial and Ordinary by Morsulus. Additionally, we are instructing anyone who consults with a client who is interested in submitting something that is one CD away from Eleanor, and is aware of this permission, to let the client know, in case they don't want to register something that is one CD away from an already registered item.
Three submissions this month (Muirenn Faulkner in Ansteorra, Lazarus von Kyrchberc in Caid, and Derbáil ingen Chonchobair in Meridies) raised questions about the correct depictions of ravens in armory, and how much difference ravens should be given from other birds.
A raven is a crow is a rook is a daw is (almost) a Cornish chough
It is important to remember that, for the medieval herald, no difference is made in depicting ravens, crows, rooks, or jackdaws. Cornish choughs are only distinguished in heraldic art from these birds by the chough's gules beak and feet. This information can be found in various heraldic treatises, including Parker, Glossary of Terms used in Heraldry, and Woodward, A Treatise on Heraldry, British and Foreign. Even the word corbie in English, from which derives the canting arms of Corbet, refers both to the raven and to the carrion crow, according to the Oxford English Dictionary. The ensuing discussion will use the term "corbie" to refer to all these birds, for convenience.
Must corbies be depicted with hairy feathers to be good period style?
Just as one attribute of the boar is its bristles, one attribute of the corbie is its hairy feathers. A nice depiction of a "hairy" raven is in the Grünenberg Armorial, reproduced in fig. 474 of Fox-Davies, A Complete Guide to Heraldry. It is important to realize that corbies are drawn with hairy feathers in period heraldic art just as often as boars are drawn with clearly visible bristles, which is to say, infrequently. It is therefore acceptable to draw a corbie with smooth feathers and blazon it as a raven, crow, or whatever sort of corbie it is meant to be, as long as it is identifiable as a corbie in the emblazon. It is not necessary to reblazon a smooth-feathered and identifiable corbie as a generic bird.
In the Cover Letter to the January 2000 LoAR, Laurel ruled in pertinent part that "... in the future I will be stricter about requiring that a bird be drawn with its defining attributes (i.e., a dove should have a tuft). Without the defining attributes, the bird may just be blazoned as 'a bird.'" Since the majority of the period depictions of corbies are smooth-feathered, it is clear that the corbie's hairy feathers are merely an attribute of the corbie, not a defining attribute. It is unclear whether a corbie has a true defining attribute. Corbies in period heraldry are overwhelmingly both tinctured sable and postured close, but other birds share these attributes. The question of whether the corbie has a defining attribute for purposes of the January 2000 ruling must be left for further research.
In England, smooth-feathered corbies are found in depictions of the canting arms of Corbet throughout our period. These arms all feature some number of corbies in sable on an Or field. These depictions range from the Herald's Roll c. 1280 (as seen in Bedingfield and Gwynn-Jones, Heraldry, p. 8), through the 15th C Fenwick Roll (Gwynn-Jones, The Art of Heraldry, p. 26) through the early 17th C Segar Roll (The Oxford Guide to Heraldry, plate 12). In addition to the canting corbies in the arms of Corbet, the Fenwick roll gives us the canting rooks in the arms of Rokesdon (Bedingfield and Gwynn-Jones, p. 61) and the canting crows in the arms of Crowmer (ibid., p. 109). They are drawn virtually identically.
Outside of England, we also find many smooth-feathered corbies. Siebmacher, in his 1605 Wappenbuch, draws his corbies indistinctly from some of the other birds close, and without hairy feathers. Some of the corbies in Siebmacher hold a coin or ring in their mouths, as period heralds also recognized the corbie's acquisitive nature and love for shiny objects. However, most of Siebmacher's corbies are drawn in their default close posture without other accoutrements. Two of the numerous examples from Siebmacher are the canting arms of die Raeblinger (f. 129) from the Rhineland, Or, a raven sable maintaining in its beak a ring argent, and the canting arms of die Krhomair (f. 63) from Silesia, Or a crow sable atop a trimount vert. The author of Gelre (a late 14th/early 15th C armorial) depicts the Spanish arms of Don Loys Cornel, Or, five crows sable, but the only way to know these are meant to be crows (keeping in mind the French for crow, corneille), is to recognize the cant, or to read the blazon provided by the editors of this volume. The birds are drawn indistinguishably from martlets. In Italy, the arms of Alfonso Sadoleto da Modeno (who held office in the Bargello from 1521-1524) are found in bas relief in the courtyard of the Bargello, Bendy embattled ... on a chief ... a raven (Stemmi (nel museo nazionale del Bargello), p. 126). This bird is blazoned as a raven by the author of Stemmi and is a rather naturalistic raven or crow. It has the outlines of a smooth-feathered bird, although the bas relief shows some shaggy feathering as internal detail.
How much difference should be given between corbies and other birds?
As noted in reference to Gelre and Siebmacher's Wappenbuch, some period heraldic art draws corbies interchangeably from other sorts of birds which are in the same close posture. In these cases, only obvious cant, or well researched blazon, can help the viewer know what sort of bird was intended. Both the author of Gelre and Siebmacher draw their corbies indistinguishably from martlets, although other heraldic art may be found (such as the Fenwick roll) which is careful to distinguish between the footless martlet (drawn either with erased leg stumps, or couped leg stumps) and birds which have feet. It is interesting to note one coat in Gelre, the arms of Jan von Raligen (f. 75), Argent a cross and in canton a martlet sable, for a crest on a cap of maintenance argent turned up sable, a martlet sable between two wings argent. The martlet on the shield is drawn with the expected couped legs, but the martlet on the crest is shown with full legs and standard bird feet. So in Gelre, not only does it appear that other compact-outlined birds are drawn like martlets, but on some occasions, martlets are drawn more like other birds. The heraldic art in both Siebmacher and Gelre is generally of good quality, so these depictions are not a result of sloppy heraldic art.
The specific question raised this month was that of the difference between corbies and falcons, when they are both in the close posture. It is easier to find artwork depicting corbies close in period heraldry than it is to find artwork depicting falcons close, as a larger proportion of the falcons in period armory are depicted in a rising posture, either with wings addorsed or displayed (see, for example, Elizabeth I's badge, Bedingfield and Gwynn-Jones, p. 118, or the arms of die Falcken on f. 189 in Siebmacher, Or a falcon rising wings displayed proper ... as a crest a falcon rising wings displayed between two bundles of sticks proper).
When it comes to the question of the difference of a close falcon and a close corbie, it appears that a falcon close could be drawn in period so that it was not distinguishable from a corbie close. See for example v. Falckenstein, f. 193 of Siebmacher, Azure three falcons argent ... as a crest, a falcon rising wings displayed argent. In the Cover Letter of the January 2000 LoAR, Laurel ruled in pertinent part, "In the future I expect that I will be more likely to grant difference between different types of birds when (a) they are (a) different in period, (b) in a period posture, (c) drawn correctly, and (d) there is some visual difference (i.e., there is really no visual difference between a popinjay and a hawk).". It appears that, at least in the case of falcons close versus corbies close, there are cases where there is no visual difference, even though they are in a period posture and in well-drawn works of heraldic art. Therefore, falcons close are not entitled to difference from corbies close. Similarly, martlets close and corbies close should not be given difference.
There have been (and continue to be) a number of submissions that include lingual mixes that have been previously ruled on. In cases where the submitter has noted no desire for authenticity and the lingual mix regularly appears in submissions, the weirdness ruling will still hold true but it will not be discussed in the ruling unless it is directly pertinent to other information included in that ruling. This policy is intended to reduce the size of the rulings and not unnecessarily repeat information which comes up often enough to be fairly well known.
To aid heralds who wish to look up previous rulings regarding lingual mixes, I'm providing to Jeanne Marie Lacroix a table of the previous rulings for inclusion in the draft of name precedents from this tenure, which are available at http://home.earthlink.net/~mranc/sca/pelican.html. A reduced form of this table is included in this letter for convenience; it lists all the mixes included in the full table, but it has been compressed to reduce the size of the table. The full table lists all rulings under both applicable languages and identifies the ruling in question by the submission item and LoAR date under which the ruling may be found.
|Combining:||With one of the following:||Is:|
|Anglicized Irish||Gaelic||a weirdness|
|Anglo-Saxon/Old English, Italian, Spanish, Yiddish||not registerable|
|Arabic||Coptic, Turkish||a weirdness|
|Norse (Old Norse), Swiss||not registerable|
|English||Welsh||not a weirdness|
|Anglo-Saxon/Old English, Gaelic, German, Italian, Old Norse, Russian, Scots, Spanish, Turkish||a weirdness|
|Hindi, Polish, Swiss||not registerable|
|French||Gaelic, German, Italian, Portuguese, Russian, Scots||a weirdness|
|Gaelic||Anglicized Irish, English, French, Norse (Old Norse), Scots||a weirdness|
|Old/Middle Gaelic (pre-1200) + Early Modern Gaelic (post-1200)||a weirdness|
|German, Greek, Russian, Welsh||not registerable|
|Italian||English, French, German, Scots, Spanish||a weirdness|
|Anglicized Irish, Norse (Old Norse), Polish, Persian||not registerable|
|Norse (Old Norse)||Anglo-Saxon/Old English, Dutch (pre-1100), English, Gaelic||a weirdness|
|Arabic, Italian, Scots||not registerable|
|Norwegian (incl. Norse
from the 12th C & later)
|Scots, Swedish||a weirdness|
|Polish||Italian, English||not registerable|
|Russian||English, French, German||a weirdness|
|Gaelic, Scots||not registerable|
|Scots||Dutch, English, French, Gaelic, Italian, Norwegian||a weirdness|
|Hungarian, Norse (Old Norse), Russian, Welsh||not registerable|
|Spanish||English, German, Italian||a weirdness|
|Anglicized Irish, Nahuatl||not registerable|
|Welsh||English||not a weirdness|
|Gaelic, German||not registerable|
Jeanne Marie Lacroix, Sommelier Pursuivant (Caid), has compiled draft precedents for the tenures of Elsbeth Anne Roth and the current administration and put them on the Web. The precedents of the current team are being updated regularly. The URL is http://home.earthlink.net/~mranc/.
Precedents for Elsbeth's entire tenure are included: they are labelled "draft" because final decisions have not yet been made about indexing and about which LoAR excerpts are to be included.
Congratulations to Margaret MacDubhshithe (Gretchen Beck), Cornelian Herald (Ĉthelmearc) and assistant to Laurel Clerk, who was inducted into the Order of the Pelican on March 4, 2002.
Congratulations also to Mari Elspeth nic Bryan (Kathleen O'Brien), Pelican Queen of Arms, who was inducted into the Order of the Pelican at Gulf Wars Great Court on March 16, 2002.
Athenais Bryennissa, Black Pillar Pursuivant in Artemisia, would like any College of Arms paper mail to go to her Post Office box: Kristin Gulling-Smith, PO Box 20584, Billings, MT 59104-0584. (She is still willing to accept LoIs and LoCs by e-mail at email@example.com.)
Juliana de Luna (Julia Smith), Garnet Herald (Ĉthelmearc's submissions herald), has a new e-mail address: firstname.lastname@example.org.
For all Letters of Intent, Comment, Response, Correction, &c, send one paper copy to each of Laurel PKoA and Wreath QoA at their mailing addresses as shown on the College of Arms Mailing List.
Send Laurel office copies of all submissions-related paper, including
to Kathleen M. O'Brien, 7323 Potters Trl, Austin, TX 78729-7777.
Send Laurel office copies of all submissions-related electronic files to email@example.com . This includes electronic copies of LoIs, LoCs, LoRs, &c.
Send roster changes and corrections to Lord Symond Bayard le Gris, Bruce R. Nevins, 2527 E. 3rd St., Tucson, AZ, 85716-4114, (520) 795-6000, (520) 795-0158 (fax), firstname.lastname@example.org. College of Arms members can also request a copy of the current roster from Symond.
For subscriptions to the paper copy of the LoAR, please contact Symond, above. The cost for an LoAR subscription is $25 a year. Please make all checks or money orders payable to "SCA Inc.-College of Arms". For subscriptions to the electronic copy of the LoAR, please contact Laurel at email@example.com. The electronic copy is available free of charge.
For all administrative matters, or for questions about whom to send to, please contact Laurel Principal King of Arms, whose contact information heads this letter.
Pray know that I remain
François la Flamme
Laurel Principal King of Arms
Created at 2002-04-21T23:23:00