Society for Creative Anachronism
College of Arms

2212 S 64th Plz Apt 418,
Omaha, NE 68106-2840
+1 952 412 4112
laurel@heraldry.sca.org

For the May 2012 meetings, printed Saturday, July 7, 2012

To all the College of Arms and all others who may read this missive, from Gabriel Laurel, Juliana Pelican, and Emma Wreath, greetings.

Items listed below in square brackets have not been scheduled yet. For information about future scheduling, please review the status table located on the Web at http://oscar.sca.org/index.php?action=137.

The May Laurel decisions were made at the Pelican meeting held on Sunday, May 6, 2012 and at the Wreath meeting held on Saturday, May 12, 2012. These meetings considered the following letters of intent: Middle (21 Dec, 2011) (pushed due to lack of packet and scans), West (06 Feb, 2012), Atlantia (08 Feb, 2012), Ăthelmearc (09 Feb, 2012), Caid (12 Feb, 2012), Atenveldt (20 Feb, 2012), East (26 Feb, 2012), Lochac (26 Feb, 2012), An Tir (28 Feb, 2012), Trimaris (28 Feb, 2012), Ansteorra (29 Feb, 2012), Drachenwald (29 Feb, 2012), Meridies (29 Feb, 2012), Outlands (29 Feb, 2012), and the special Laurel LoPaD (03 June, 2012). All commentary, responses, and rebuttals should have been entered into OSCAR by Monday, April 30, 2012.

The June Laurel decisions were made at the Wreath meeting held on Saturday, June 9, 2012, the Pelican meeting held on Sunday, June 10, 2012, and the Joint Laurel Road Show at KWHSS on Sunday, June 24, 2012. These meetings considered the following letters of intent: Laurel LoPaD (29 Feb, 2012) (issued in March), Ăthelmearc (02 Mar, 2012), Northshield (02 Mar, 2012), Caid (11 Mar, 2012), Ansteorra Other Letter (15 Mar, 2012), Atenveldt (20 Mar, 2012), West (24 Mar, 2012), East (26 Mar, 2012), Ansteorra (28 Mar, 2012), Atlantia (29 Mar, 2012), Lochac (29 Mar, 2012), Drachenwald (30 Mar, 2012), Meridies (30 Mar, 2012), Northshield Other Letter (30 Mar, 2012), Ealdormere (31 Mar, 2012), Outlands (31 Mar, 2012), and Caid (01 Apr, 2012). All commentary, responses, and rebuttals should have been entered into OSCAR by Thursday, May 31, 2012.

The July Laurel decisions will be made at the Pelican meeting held on Sunday, July 1, 2012 and the Wreath meeting held on Saturday, July 28, 2023. These meetings will consider the following letters of intent: Artemisia (31 Mar, 2012) (pushed due to lack of packet), Caid (01 Apr, 2012), An Tir (02 Apr, 2012), Calontir (03 Apr, 2012), Atlantia (07 Apr, 2012), Laurel LoPaD (08 Apr, 2012), Northshield (08 Apr, 2012), Ealdormere (19 Apr, 2012), Middle (20 Apr, 2012), Atenveldt (25 Apr, 2012), East (25 Apr, 2012), West (27 Apr, 2012), Lochac (28 Apr, 2012), An Tir (29 Apr, 2012), Ansteorra (30 Apr, 2012), Gleann Abhann (30 Apr, 2012), Meridies (30 Apr, 2012), and Outlands (30 Apr, 2012). All commentary, responses, and rebuttals should have been entered into OSCAR by Saturday, June 30, 2012.

The August Laurel decisions will be made at the Pelican and Wreath meetings held in August 2012. These meetings will consider the following letters of intent: Ăthelmearc (04 May, 2012), [Trimaris (04 May, 2012)], Laurel LoPaD (06 May, 2012), East (12 May, 2012), [Northshield (18 May, 2012)], Atenveldt (20 May, 2012), Caid (25 May, 2012), Artemisia (28 May, 2012), An Tir (29 May, 2012), Lochac (29 May, 2012), Ealdormere (30 May, 2012), Middle (30 May, 2012), Outlands (30 May, 2012), [Ansteorra (31 May, 2012)], Atlantia (31 May, 2012), Drachenwald (31 May, 2012), Gleann Abhann (31 May, 2012), Meridies (31 May, 2012), and West (31 May, 2012). All commentary, responses, and rebuttals should be entered into OSCAR by Tuesday, July 31, 2012.

The September Laurel decisions will be made at the Pelican and Wreath meetings held in September 2012. These meetings will consider the following letters of intent: Laurel LoPaD (07 Jun, 2012), [Middle (07 Jun, 2012)], [Atenveldt (25 Jun, 2012)], [East (25 Jun, 2012)], [Ăthelmearc (27 Jun, 2012)], [Lochac (27 Jun, 2012)], [Atlantia (28 Jun, 2012)], [Caid (29 Jun, 2012)], [Ăthelmearc (30 Jun, 2012)], [An Tir (30 Jun, 2012)], [Ansteorra (30 Jun, 2012)], [Drachenwald (30 Jun, 2012)], [Gleann Abhann (30 Jun, 2012)], [Meridies (30 Jun, 2012)], [Outlands (30 Jun, 2012)], [Palimpsest Rules Letter (30 Jun, 2012)]. All commentary, responses, and rebuttals should be entered into OSCAR by Friday, August 31, 2012.

Not all letters of intent may be considered when they are originally scheduled on this cover letter. The date of posting 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, et cetera) have not yet been met.

REMINDER: Until all administrative requirements are met, the letter may not be scheduled.

From Laurel: Letters of Permission to Conflict

While we are certainly pleased to accept Letters of Permission to Conflict, we must remind submitters that permission must be granted to a specific individual or individuals that we will later be able to identify. Likewise, Blanket Letters of Permission to Conflict may limit their Blanket Permission only to specific individuals that we will later be able to identify. Specifying such things as "members of the household" or "members of the barony" leaves Laurel with the unenviable task of determining membership in those groups, something we cannot do.

With regards to the new Standards for Evaluation, Blanket Letters of Permission to Conflict that grant permission for an item that is "one countable step (CD)" from the registered armory will be understood under the new Standards to mean the equivalent, a distinct change (DC).

From Pelican and Wreath: Notes on Terminology in Rulings

This month marks the first of a several-month phase-in period, where we will consider submissions under both the old Rules for Submissions and the new Standards for Evaluations, and register the submission if possible under whichever rule set is most favorable to the submission. While both rule sets are in effect, we will strive to be clear in our decisions as to which rule set is applied. If there is no decision text in an acceptance, one may assume the registration was allowable under both rule sets. This will continue through the October 2012 decision meetings, after which only the Standards for Evaluation will be in effect.

For armory, with few exceptions, anything previously considered a significant change, or clear difference (CD), is the same sort of thing that is worth a distinct change (DC). Some decisions will be written with this in mind. For example, "a CD/DC for the change of field," describes the situation in which a CD is granted under the old Rules for Submissions and a DC is granted under the new Standards for Evaluation for the exact same type of change.

From Pelican and Wreath: Submissions Analysis for May

As we are considering submissions under both the Rules for Submissions and the Standards for Evaluation, we thought back to the last time we had a major change of rules, in late 1989 through early 1990. Like with those decisions done under "parallel processing", we have decided to keep records of the results to share. These counts include registered or returned items only; no administrative actions such as transfers or acceptances, associations of existing armory, heraldic wills, or other such letters will be included in these counts.

"Armory style" and "armory conflict" indicate if a submitted item could only be passed under one rule set or the other due to conflict or style issues. For example, a submission that could not be registered under the old rules due to conflict but could be registered without conflict under the new standards will be counted as "passed under the new standards, but not old" as armory conflict.

If math is not your thing, it may be interesting to note that if all submissions were considered only under the Rules for Submissions, there would be an 81% success rate. Considered only under the Standards for Evaluation, there would be an 88% success rate.

From Pelican: The Legal Name Allowance and Hyphenated Family Names

This month, we were asked to determine if part of a hyphenated surname was eligible for the legal name allowance. Normally, we require the entire name phrase to be used in the legal name allowance. However, hyphenated surnames are a special case, as they invariably represent a combination of two distinct family names rather than a single name phrase. This can be seen in the way these names are formed and inherited; the combinations tend to change from generation to generation. Thus, the name phrase on either side of a hyphenated surname is considered an independent name phrase and is eligible for the legal name allowance.

From Pelican: Some Names Resources (a series): Marital Names Part 2

In March, we began a discussion of marital bynames: how husbands and wives share (or fail to share) bynames. While it's typical in the modern world for a married couple to share a surname, this was not true in many areas of Europe in the Middle Ages.

One common type of medieval byname is a patronymic byname, which names a person as their father's child (less frequently, there are matronymic bynames, which indicate a person's mother, or other bynames of relationship). In period, many of these bynames are quite literal (as opposed to inherited family names). These literal bynames are not shared by spouses; having the same patronymic byname would suggest that they have the same father.

There are a few late period cultures and languages in which women sometimes take on their husband's family name (there are no languages or cultures in which this always happens). This is true for English and for French. In German, there is an interesting variant: married women often use a femininized version of their husband's surname (see Aryanhwy merch Catmael's "Women's Surnames in 15th- and 16th-Century Germany" http://www.ellipsis.cx/~liana/names/german/womenssurnames.html for more details about constructing these names).

In those languages that are recorded by English scribes, we also see women's names recorded with their husband's bynames. We are not sure whether this is an accurate recording of how those women would have written or said their names. However, in late period Anglicized Irish and Welsh names recorded by English scribes, we see women using their husband's bynames.

From Wreath: Unified Posture and Arrangement

Section A3D2c of the Standards for Evaluation, Unity of Posture and Orientation, states:

The charges within a charge group should be in either identical postures/orientations or an arrangement that includes posture/orientation (in cross, combatant, or in pall points outward, for example). A charge group in which postures for different charges must be blazoned individually will not be allowed without period examples of that combination of postures. Arrangements of charges which cannot be blazoned will not be allowed. Some standard arrangements for period charge groups are discussed in Appendix K.

All of the examples given are of groups with the same charge type. But what about groups of mixed charge types?

It seems to us best to apply the concept of "comparable postures", as described in section A5G7, which references Appendix L. In short, if the charges in a single charge group do not have comparable postures, they are not in violation of the "identical postures/orientations" part of the rule. The charge group as a whole must still be in a standard arrangement.

For example, two lions and an eagle is in a standard two-and-one arrangement for a group of three charges, and is a mixed-type charge group consisting of quadrupeds and birds. Quadrupeds and birds do not have comparable postures, so this is allowable under A3D2c. For example, two lions and a bear sejant is a mixed-type charge group consisting of quadrupeds; as quadrupeds do have comparable postures and the lions and bear are not in identical postures, this is not allowable under A3D2c. For example, two swords in saltire and a lion is a mixed-type charge group consisting of inanimate charges and animate charges, which do not have comparable postures. However, the entire group is not in a single unified arrangement, but instead has the swords and the lion arranged separately. This is not an allowable arrangement under A3D2c, without further documentation of its use in period.

From Wreath: Ermine Variants

Section A3B1 of the Standards for Evaluation, Tinctures, states:

Furs are a group of named patterns used as tinctures. For the purposes of tincture, ermined furs are grouped in the same way as their background color. Ermine (a white background with black tails) and erminois (a yellow background with black tails) are metals. Counter-ermine (a black background with white tails) and pean (a black background with yellow tails) are colors.

This, along with lack of other ermine variants listed in Appendix F, has been frequently interpreted to mean that "non-standard" ermine variants are no longer allowable under the Standards for Evaluation. However, that was not the intent of Palimpsest. As the rule is written, it is describing what the specifically-named patterns represent; it makes no mention good or ill of other ermine variants, which we blazon as X ermined Y.

Research on period examples of ermine variants was mixed. We have found several examples, unfortunately undated. Woodward's A Treatise on Heraldry, British and Foreign, Vol. 1, p. 76, lists quite a few examples as "foreign variations". Most can be found repeated in Rietstap. Woodward cites Roux, which is repeated in Rietstap as Roux alias Roulx du Chesnot, Azure, semy of ermine spots argent, an eagle Or armed gules. Woodward and Rietstap cite Van Leefvelt, Gules, semy of ermine spots Or, Beuville, Gules, semy of ermine spots, a fleur-de-lys argent, and Schleiden, Azure, semy of ermine spots Or, a lion argent. Woodward goes on to cite examples of ermine spots used as discrete numbered charges, including Baysse with Gules, six ermine spots Or. All of these examples are likely post-period, although they could just as easily date to late period.

Closer to period, we have Abbrege' methodique des principes de la science heraldique, by Jean-Claude Favre, 1647, which on p. 30 gives the specific example of "11. Monsieur tel porte d'hermine, d'azur & d'argent".

And finally, for a definite period source, we have Les Blason des armoiries, by Hierome de Bara, 1581, which on p. 9 says "Car l'Hermine est d'argent & de sable, & le Vair d'argent & d'azur. Toutesfois en blasonant, on ne les specifie pas, mais en vn mot on dit: Tel Seigneur porte d'Hermines, ou de Vair, exceptÚ quand ils sont d'autre metal & et couleur, car alors on doit dire: Tel Seigneur porte d'Hermines, ou de Vair, d'Or, Synople, Gueulles, ou autre." On p. 13 de Bara gives the specific example of Gules, three ermine spots Or. Brunissende Dragonette was kind enough to give the following translation: "Ermine is argent and sable, and Vair is argent and azure. However, one doesn't specify when blazoning, but just says: This Lord bears Ermine or Vair; unless they are of another metal and color, as then one must say: This Lord bears Ermine or Vair Or, Vert, Gules or other."

The latter two sources are heraldic treatises, which are not always to be trusted for actual practice, as opposed to theoretical. However, they do give us a guide as to the sorts of things period and just-post-period heralds felt were suitable for use in armory.

The SCA is its own heraldic jurisdiction; as section A1A1 of the Standards for Evaluation states, "Our core style is not identical to the style of any single specific place and time, although it is based on the dominant style in medieval Western Europe, the Anglo-Norman style" At worst, ermine variants are post-period, but a logical and unremarkable extension of period heraldic style; at best, they are indeed period. Therefore, we hereby clarify that ermine variants in all tincture combinations are allowable without a step from period practice so long as the rule of contrast is followed.

We propose a wording change to Appendix F of the Standards for Evaluation. It currently reads:

The main heraldic tinctures are listed in A.3.B.1. Other heraldic tinctures may only be registered as part of an Individually Attested Pattern.

We would like commentary on the following proposed change:

The main heraldic tinctures are listed in A.3.B.1. Furs are treated as a single tincture; a fur may combine any color with any metal (for example, gules ermined Or, vairy argent and sable). Other heraldic tinctures may only be registered as part of an Individually Attested Pattern.

Society Pages

On May 12, 2012, Master Alexander Ravenscroft, former Beacon Principal Herald, was granted an Augmentation of Arms.

On June 2, 2012, at Highland River Melees, Glynis Gwynedd, former Clerk of Precedence of the kingdom of Atlantia, was invested with a court barony.

On Saturday, June 16, 2012, Giles Leebrook, former Crux Australias Principal Herald of Lochac was inducted into the order of the Pelican.

Following up on previous news, Saturday, June 16, 2012 was also the coronation of Aryanhwy merch Catmael, former Pelican Queen of Arms, as Queen of Drachenwald.

Send What to Whom

Letters of Intent, Comment, Response, Correction, et cetera are to be posted to the OSCAR online system. No paper copies need be sent.

Submission packets (one copy of each name form plus documentation, including petitions; two colored copies of each armory form plus two copies of any associated documentation, including petitions) to the SCA College of Arms, PO Box 17207, Bristol VA 24209-7207.

Cheques or money orders for submissions, payable to "SCA Inc.-College of Arms" are to be sent to David Duggar, Attn: Laurel Chancellor of Exchequer, 1705 Holiday Pl, Bossier City, LA 71112-3706.

Roster changes and corrections to contact information must be performed by the rostered individual on OSCAR. Changes and corrections to heraldic roles and titles must be performed by the kingdom's principal herald on OSCAR. The current roster is always available on OSCAR for all College of Arms members with an account.

For a paper copy of a LoAR, please contact Laurel, at the address above. The cost for one LoAR is $3. Please make all checks or money orders payable to "SCA Inc.-College of Arms". The electronic copy of the LoAR is available free of charge. To subscribe to the mailings of the electronic copy, please see the bottom of http://heraldry.sca.org/heraldry/lists.html#lists for more instructions.

For all administrative matters, please contact Laurel.

Pray know that I remain,

In service,

Gabriel Kjotvason
Laurel Principal King of Arms


Created at 2012-07-07T10:40:31