Society for Creative Anachronism
College of Arms

2212 S. 64th Plaza, #418
Omaha, NE, 68106
+1 952 412 4112

For the July 2013 meetings, printed September 17, 2013

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

The July Laurel decisions were made at the Pelican meeting held on Sunday, July 7, 2013 and the Wreath meeting held on Saturday, July 6, 2013, and at the Laurel Roadshow held on Monday, July 29, 2013. These meetings considered the following letters of intent: Laurel LoPaD (03 Apr, 2013), Northshield (04 Apr, 2013), Æthelmearc (10 Apr, 2013), Calontir (14 Apr, 2013), Trimaris (14 Apr, 2013), Ealdormere (18 Apr, 2013), Atenveldt (20 Apr, 2013), Outlands (21 Apr, 2013), Drachenwald (22 Apr, 2013), East (26 Apr, 2013), An Tir (28 Apr, 2013), Lochac (29 Apr, 2013), Middle (29 Apr, 2013), Atlantia (30 Apr, 2013), Caid (30 Apr, 2013), Gleann Abhann (30 Apr, 2013), Meridies (30 Apr, 2013), West (30 Apr, 2013), West (30 Apr, 2013). All commentary, responses, and rebuttals should have been entered into OSCAR by Sunday, June 30, 2013.

The August Laurel decisions were made at the Pelican meeting held on Sunday, August 18, 2013 and the Wreath meeting held on Saturday, August 17, 2013. These meetings considered the following letters of intent: Northshield (10 May, 2013), Calontir (13 May, 2013), Ansteorra (16 May, 2013), Drachenwald (21 May, 2013), Caid (22 May, 2013), Ealdormere (23 May, 2013), East (23 May, 2013), Atenveldt (25 May, 2013), Caid (27 May, 2013), Outlands (28 May, 2013), Gleann Abhann (29 May, 2013), Middle (29 May, 2013), Æthelmearc (31 May, 2013), An Tir (31 May, 2013), Atlantia (31 May, 2013), Lochac (31 May, 2013), Meridies (31 May, 2013). All commentary, responses, and rebuttals should have been entered into OSCAR by Wednesday, July 31, 2013.

The September Laurel decisions will be made at the Pelican meeting held on Sunday, September 15, 2013 and the Wreath meeting held on Saturday, September 14, 2013. These meetings will consider the following letters of intent: Laurel LoPaD (05 Jun, 2013), Drachenwald LoItUP (06 Jun, 2013), Atlantia (08 Jun, 2013), Middle (11 Jun, 2013), Northshield (12 Jun, 2013), Artemisia (13 Jun, 2013), Outlands (20 Jun, 2013), [Drachenwald (23 Jun, 2013)], Atenveldt (25 Jun, 2013), Ealdormere (25 Jun, 2013), East (26 Jun, 2013), An Tir (27 Jun, 2013), Gleann Abhann (27 Jun, 2013), Calontir (29 Jun, 2013), Æthelmearc (30 Jun, 2013), Ansteorra (30 Jun, 2013), Caid (30 Jun, 2013), Lochac (30 Jun, 2013), Meridies (30 Jun, 2013), Trimaris (30 Jun, 2013), West (30 Jun, 2013). All commentary, responses, and rebuttals should be entered into OSCAR by Saturday, August 31, 2013.

The October Laurel decisions will be made at the Pelican and Wreath meetings held in October 2013. These meetings will consider the following letters of intent: Laurel LoPaD (09 Jul, 2013), [Northshield (09 Jul, 2013)], Atlantia (12 Jul, 2013), [Middle (13 Jul, 2013)], Ealdormere (21 Jul, 2013), [Drachenwald (22 Jul, 2013)], [East (27 Jul, 2013)], Artemisia (28 Jul, 2013), [Caid (29 Jul, 2013)], An Tir (31 Jul, 2013), Ansteorra (31 Jul, 2013), [Atenveldt (31 Jul, 2013)], [Gleann Abhann (31 Jul, 2013)], [Meridies (31 Jul, 2013)], Outlands (31 Jul, 2013), [West (31 Jul, 2013)]. All commentary, responses, and rebuttals should be entered into OSCAR by Monday, September 30, 2013.

The November Laurel decisions will be made at the Pelican and Wreath meetings held in November 2013. These meetings will consider the following letters of intent: [Calontir (06 Aug, 2013)], [Atlantia (13 Aug, 2013)], [Drachenwald Other Letter (13 Aug, 2013)], [Lochac (14 Aug, 2013)], [Palimpsest Rules Letter (18 Aug, 2013)], [Laurel LoPaD (19 Aug, 2013)], [Outlands (19 Aug, 2013)], [Middle (23 Aug, 2013)], [Atenveldt (25 Aug, 2013)], [Caid (25 Aug, 2013)], [Ealdormere (25 Aug, 2013)]. All commentary, responses, and rebuttals should be entered into OSCAR by Thursday, October 31, 2013.

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: Personal Heraldic Titles and You

Over the years since their introduction in July 1981, some confusion and differing traditions have arisen concerning personal heraldic titles and the rank of herald extraordinary. In that Cover Letter, Wilhelm Laurel said:

The rank that I have decided to add is that of Herald Extraordinary. This is a rank in use in England today, whenever they create a Herald's post for some occasion that is not to become a permanent position on the-College of Arms' roster. The rank of Herald Extraordinary shall be permanent so long as the holder continues to remain active in SCA heraldry. It shall fall in rank below a full Herald but above a Pursuivant. Each Herald Extraordinary shall have a title that is his/her own personal title that s/he shall hold so long as s/he remains active. If s/he should retire from the SCA, the title shall retire with her/him and shall not be used again by anyone else. Such titles must still clear my office. Kingdom Principal Heralds are responsible for elevating heralds in their kingdom to this rank, as they are responsible for all other ranks within their kingdom. This rank is reserved for those heralds who have greatly served the College of Heralds and/or the College of Arms and have achieved the highest level of competence in heraldry. Such a rank shall have no fixed duties, unless such shall be agreed upon by the holder and the Kingdom Principal Herald, but instead the holder of the rank shall be a senior member of the College who shall lend heraldic expertise as s/he sees fit.

It is obvious, from this reading, that a herald extraordinary is entitled to a personal heraldic title. But likewise, having or being entitled to a personal heraldic title implies the ranking of herald extraordinary: a herald extraordinary is, after all, just a herald not in ordinary -- that is, not in a regular titled office. Personal heraldic titles are for use by heralds who, as Wilhelm Laurel originally said, "have greatly served the College of Heralds and/or the College of Arms and have achieved the highest level of competence in heraldry" -- that is, heralds who remain in service even when not in ordinary, and therefore they are heralds extraordinary. Principal Heralds and Crowns should take note then -- when you give someone a personal heraldic title or entitle them to chose their own personal heraldic title, you have also elevated them to the "rank" of Herald Extraordinary.

* From Laurel: Titles and Non-Profits

Recently, there have been a large number of personal heraldic titles transferred from kingdoms or other SCA groups to individual heralds. It is a good thing that individuals are being recognized for their accomplishments, but we need to change policy to enforce an SCA rule.

The U.S. Federal government has very stringent guidelines on non-profit corporations giving gifts. Since a fee is paid for registration of a title, and it is a form of intellectual property, transferring a title to an individual could be considered a gift. The SCA, Inc., some time ago, required that the SCA branches stop giving gifts to members/non-members where the gifts are paid for by SCA funds. Specifically:

[Y]ou are hereby directed to immediately cease the practice of purchasing gifts, of any kind, where funds of the SCA, Inc. are being used for such purchase. This also applies to reimbursements of any individual for the purchase of a gift on behalf of the branch. []

While this is an older rule, it has not been overruled. As such, while we recognize that there are titles which were registered to kingdoms in the days before individual ownership was allowed, and we will not stop the transfer of already registered titles to the individuals they were registered for, new titles should be registered directly by individuals, not kingdoms. Titles registered before the May 2013 Laurel meetings will be allowed to be transferred to individuals, and all such transfers should be submitted to Laurel by December 31, 2013. Any personal titles currently in process for individuals which are being registered to groups should be withdrawn immediately and resubmitted by the individual, with a fee collected.

In the case that the title is expected to be transferred to an individual who has not yet been granted a title, and the above date passes, the individual may purchase the title from the group. All transfer paperwork should be made out as if it were a normal transfer, with the exception that this submission must be accompanied by the usual Laurel payment amount, and that payment must have been collected from the submitter. Whether or not to charge a full submission price instead of just the (currently $3) Laurel fee is a matter for the kingdom to determine.

* From Pelican: Some Name Resources (An Ongoing Series)

Continuing with the Eastern European theme, this month I'd like to highlight some new resources for documenting Baltic names. We normally refer to the Baltic states as modern Lithuania, Latvia, and Estonia. However, linguistically the situation is somewhat different. Lithuanian and Latvian are "Baltic languages," related to other Slavic languages. We have resources for Lithuanian, and to a lesser extent Latvian, names. Estonian is related to Finnish and we know of no useful resources for documenting period names.

A little history: the area was for most of our period part of the Grand Duchy of Lithuania. In that area, a variety of languages were spoken and written, mostly Lithuanian, Polish, and Ruthenian (also known as Chancery Slavonic, and the ancestor of modern Ukrainian and Belarusian). The last was written in Cyrillic, the other two in the Latin alphabet. Sometimes documents were also written in Latin and German, but mostly for communication with outside states.

Until relatively recently, our best resource for Lithuanian names was an article from the English language journal Lituanus: "Lithuanian Names," by the mundane scholar William Schmalstieg ( However, recently, ffride wlffsdotter (Goutte d'Eau) has published a pair of articles. The first is "16th and early 17th C. feminine names from Lithuanian records" ( The second is "Early 17th century bynames of bridegrooms, from a wedding register from Lankeliskiai parish, Lithuania" ( These new articles represent a substantial increase in our knowledge of Lithuanian names, and we hope she continues to find resources to mine.

So, what's in these resources? Early Lithuanian names were dithemic (made from the joining of two themes or stems), like the masculine Kantibutas or Jovirdas. As Christianity (both Orthodox and Catholic) spread in Lithuania by the 11th century, Christian names from East and West became more common. In the late 14th century, Catholicism became the official state religion. Through this time, a variety of "Christian" names were introduced and became common. By late period, most people appear to have Christian names: the most common women's names in ffride's article are Anna, Kataryna, and Zofiia.

Family names as such appear by the late 14th century, but will still not be universal by the end of our period. Early bynames are mostly patronymic in form, such as the c. 1400 Dravenio s{u-}nus or the gray period Mikailunos. In Ruthenian context, bynames of relationship are rather like those in Russian, using forms like M{i-}kolaevna and sometimes adding words like dochka "daughter" (cognate with Russian doch'). See ffride's "16th and early 17th C. feminine names from Lithuanian records" for more details on these constructions.

Other kinds of bynames are found as well. In ffride's article on feminine names article, descriptive bynames are found. Additionally, women are described as relatives (wives, daughters, etc.) of men using masculine occupational descriptions that may be bynames. Another byname pattern found in the period around Christianization is the use of two given names, one Christian and one "native Lithuanian," connected with alias or unmarked, such as the Latinized Michael alias Minegal or Joannes Gosztowdo, both from the late 14th or early 15th century.

Latvia has a rather different history, as it falls under German control by around 1200. Riga will become part of the Hanseatic League and German and Latin will be the languages of record for most of the Middle Ages. A partial list of Latvian given names was created by Aranhwy merch Catmael, "Medieval Latvian Given Names" ( These names are mostly Christian, even in the 13th century. This may reflect the earlier Christianization of Latvia and/or the greater German influence there.

There are no online sources for Latvian family names. However, the book Die Rigaer und Revaler Familiennamen im 14. und 15. Jahrhundert: unter besonderer Berücksichtigung der Herkunft der Bürger, by Liselotte Feyerabend (Köln: Böhlau, 1985) has information about 14th and 15th century family names in Riga. Most of them are German, but there are some examples of

* From Wreath: Charges Within Charges

Commentary on several recent submissions has raised the issue of whether or not a charge "framed" within another charge is a step from period practice. Precedent says:

[A demi-flamberge...within and issuant from the base of a serpent involved deosil] This device has several unattested elements: ...and framing the badge within a serpent involved. The latter, while popular in the SCA, is nonetheless a weirdness... [Rowen Killian, R-Caid, February 1997 LoAR]

[a triangle inverted voided and a triangle voided conjoined in pale within the astronomical sign for Taurus] ...Using it in this non-standard fashion (the framing of one charge by another is itself very rare in period heraldry), is another weirdness... [Ungust Filius Antonii, R-Caid, June 2000 LoAR]

[three broadarrows in pall inverted, points outward, within a hexagon voided] Several commenters asked whether this is a period design or whether there should be a step from period practice for the framing. A step from period practice for the framing would be the only single step from period practice for the device, so the badge would be registerable anyway. We decline to rule at this time on the question of whether the framing is a step from period practice. [Alan of Caerlaverock, A-Middle, October 2008 LoAR]

Despite the earlier rulings, enforcing a step from period practice for a charge framed by another charge has not occurred in the past decade as far as we can tell. Certainly we have not upheld the precedent with regard to laurel wreaths. The March 2009 Cover Letter did establish that charges within annulets were not a step from period practice, based on period examples of that exact motif.

Our bar for declaring a charge to not be a step from period practice is rather low. SENA A2B4 states, "For charges, a single example of that charge used in European armory during our period is usually sufficient to allow its use without being a step from period practice." For a general motif, more than one example would seem to be better, to cover the general sort of variety one expects, but the documentation should be less than that required of an Individually Attested Pattern, since those patterns are otherwise entirely unregisterable.

While the motif of a charge framed by another charge is quite rare in period armory, it is by no means unknown. In addition to the known pattern of charges within annulets, we also have:

We should also note the very nature of bordures, orles, and tressures, which are not uncommonly surrounding other charges. Given these examples, we are explicitly overturning the 1997 and 2000 precedents and declaring that the motif of a charge "framed" by another charge is not in itself a step from period practice.

* From Wreath: Involved Serpents

In Society blazon, we have frequently blazoned the motif of a serpent or dragon curled in a circle and biting its own tail as involved or involved in annulo. As the period blazon term involved appears reserved for serpents curled into a spiral shape, not into an annulet, we need to be able to distinguish between these postures. Therefore we will no longer use the term involved for charges actually in annulo; instead, we will use the term in annulo vorant of its own tail or some other similar blazon. Registered items using just involved that are in annulo will be reblazoned this month; other items using involved in annulo will be reblazoned as needed in the future.

* Society Pages

On July 27 at Bhakail's Court of Love at Pennsic, Alana O'Keeve, member of the East Kingdom heraldic community, and Joscelin le esqurel, Blue Tyger Herald, got engaged.

On August 24 at Ansteorra's Laurel's Prize Tourney, Their Majesites Lochlann and Gwen did elevate Alden Drake, former Star Principal Herald, into the companionship of the Order of the Pelican.

On September 8, Richenda du Jardin, Black Antelope Herald, and Juliana de Luna, Pelican Queen of Arms, were married in Spokane, WA.

* 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. All submission forms plus documentation, including petitions, must be posted to the OSCAR online system.

Submission packets (one colored copy of each armory form only) to the SCA College of Arms, 3101 Lee Hwy Ste 18/19 #178, Bristol VA 24202.

Cheques or money orders for submissions, payable to "SCA Inc.-College of Arms" are to be sent to John C. Sandstrom, New Mexico State University, PO Box 30006/MSC 3475, Las Cruces, NM 88003.

Send roster changes and corrections to Laurel. College of Arms members may also request a copy of the current roster from Laurel.

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 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 2013-10-13T00:51:20