Big Damn Stick Competition at Lilies War

Unknown Artist. Minstrels with a Rebec & a Lute.
13th c. Manasseh Codex. El Escorial, Madrid. Public domain in the US

Hello Calontir!

This year at Lillies War the Big Damn Stick competition will be held at Bardis Gras.

The theme is Lost Tales. Sing a song or tell a story people have never heard, or haven’t heard in a long time. The attending populace and fellow bards will pick their champion so make sure it’s a good one. Be funny, thrilling, heartbreaking, or all three, but bring something to the table that is different than the usual.

See you on the battlefield!

Lady Selene

Post expires at 8:18am on Tuesday June 25th, 2019

Valor Canceled

Men harvesting wheat, Queen Mary’s Psalter, circa 1310. Public domain in the US

Greetings to my brothers and sisters among our fair Kingdom,

It is with heavy heart that we send you news this day. At this time, the site of the Tournament of Valor is over 60% under water, including the main camping areas. The caretaker has informed us that while the river has not breached it’s banks at this time, the next two days of promised rain will do so, flooding the cabins as well. I cannot in good conscience have our friends and companions make the trip under these circumstances.

On speaking with the kingdom Reeve, the next realistic date to reschedule this event is Labor Day Weekend. As the camp site is allowing us to reschedule, we have requested permission to do so.

Your humble servant,
Lady Catlin Marie du Moretaine

Seneschal of Vatavia

Post expires at 2:12pm on Thursday May 30th, 2019

Review: The Knowne World Bardcast Features the Music of Calontir


Unknown Artist. Minstrels with a Rebec & a Lute.
13th c. Manasseh Codex. El Escorial, Madrid. Public domain in the US

The Knowne World Bardcast is a podcast of bardic performances from across the Society. The typical format is familiar to listeners of radio and podcasts for generation; a playlist of recordings gathered from bards who have recorded their songs and made them available. The production levels of the recordings are spotty, of course, but Lord Gideon ap Stephen does a good job of editing the program and making it interesting. It is a pleasant way to be introduced to the music of other kingdoms, and a good way to pass the time on road trips to foreign wars. Please consider subscribing on your favorite podcatcher.

Lord Gideon is on a quest to publish episodes that showcase each particular Kingdom. His goal is to have episodes for all 20 Kingdoms, and he has done several of them so far. At the time of this article, he had recently posted an episode for Calontir and, for the first time, had to split the episode into two parts.

The Calontir Episode, Part One:  In the Key of Army

“Part One: In the Key of Army” is a documentary-style episode recorded at Gulf Wars. Gideon recorded Calontir singing as a kingdom at the Calontir Party. Standards such as the Battle of Maldon, Benevento, In Praise of a New Knighthood, and many other Calon favorites. Will make any Calontiri heart skip a beat, and long to join the chorus at the earliest opportunity.

The Calontir Episode, Part Two:  The Heart, The Land

This is a more typical episode of The Knowne World Bardcast. After being impressed by Calontir’s group singing, Gideon received messages reminding him that Calontir has its own share of solo bards, songwriters, poets and performers. The call went out and many answered and  “Part Two:  The Heart, The Land” was born. From across time and space, recordings of Calontir bards were gathered and assembled into a playlist:

Lord Gideon’s “The Knowne World Bardcast” is a great addition to the wealth of SCA culture, and this close look at Calontir’s culture of song is most welcome. We will be adding KWB to our SCA Links page under “Arts and Culture”

Family Activities at Pennsic: Call for Instructors

Greetings from the Family Activities Staff of the Pennsic War!

The deadline to submit classes for Pennsic that will appear in the site book is mere days away, on May 1st! The Family Activities department runs three separate tracks of classes and activities, and all three are still looking for teachers. Teachers do not have to be background checked, or have any specific youth qualifications, they just need enthusiasm for their subject and a willingness to teach. A second adult is helpful, but not required.

Family Point, focused on those aged under 10, is looking for teachers of hands on crafts, mostly for Peace Week slots. If you are not sure what to teach, we have pre-packaged activities ready to go, such as viking bead lacing and rune carving that just need a teacher.

Youth University, aimed at those 9-14, and located at the playground, is looking for SCA history, persona specific, and hands on classes targeted to tweens. We have openings during both Peace and War week.

Teen University, aimed at those 13-17, and located in the regular university area, is also looking for classes on SCA history, actual history, heraldry, sewing, other hands-on classes, and practically everything that adults are also interested in. Many teens also take classes at the regular university, however we provide a lower-stress entry point for those who need it. We have openings both weeks.

If you are interested in teaching, you can either enter the class in the Pennsic University System at in the parent/child category with a note in the additional scheduling for either TeenU, YouthU, or Family Point, or you can email me at
Please help us provide a full slate of classes for each group in order to help our next generation fully integrate and remain interested in our society.

Many Thanks,

Mistress Leonete D’Angely, Pennsic Family Activities Coordinator, and former teenaged Pennsic attendee.

Post expires at 5:15pm on Sunday September 1st, 2019

Bardic Bedlam Schedule

Bardic Bedlam will be held at St. George & the Dragon this year, on May 10-11 at the 7C’s Winery in Walnut Grove, MO. You can expect a day packed full of classes related to the bardic arts as well as a roaring bardic fire Saturday night. Bring your lunch or dinner over to the bardic pavilion and listen to (or better yet, participate in) themed performance challenges we call “flytes”.


Try something you might otherwise not have tried! No judging, no winners, and no need to worry about whether something is “good enough.” Jump in with both feet, because the goal is always to have fun. We have a busy day planned, so we’ll work the flytes in during lunch, dinner, and the evening bardic fire.

“Something for Everyone—A Comedy Tonight” sponsored by Honorable Lord (patent pending) Johann SteinarssonA flyte where the focus is on laughter and comedy, NOT death, doom and gloom.

“Songs that Need Singing and Tales that Need Telling” sponsored by Master Dolan Madoc. Share a new piece you have not had the chance to offer us very often or an old one we have not heard in a while.

“Calontir History” sponsored by Mistress Katriana op den Dijk. Share a song or story, about or from, Calontir’s history. It can be something you put together (like Dolan with his “Pavel Gets Hurt” saga) or something created by someone else (like the Pict Song popular in our rebel days).

“Unfinished Business” sponsored by Mistress Dorcas Whitecap. Come perform something that is incomplete, waiting around in your “works in progress” file.  Perhaps having others hear it will provide that last little motivation to “get ‘er done!”

“Some of Dulcibella’s Favorite Things” sponsored by Honorable Lady Dulcibella de Chateaurien. Share/compose a story, poem, or song that includes the following five words or phrases in some form: pirate. Eire. broken heart. magic mirror. and wayward.

“Ultreia y Suseia” sponsored by Honorable Lady Adalyde bint Junus al-zaarqa“Ultreia y suseia” translates loosely to “onward and upward”, which can mean many things to people. Share a performance that shows us what those words mean to you.

“On-site Contrafacta Challenge” sponsored by Honorable Lady Fiondel Songspinner. There will be a “hat” filled with themes for your filk song.  You will pick a random theme, and write a filk song on that theme, to be performed at the fire that evening.  I will provide a list of suggestions of period music (and, yes…I will have handy recordings of many of them, just in case you don’t know the melody).  Extra points will be given for using the period music.  But, if you want to “branch out” and use a melody of your own choice as the basis for your filk, you do you!  There will be prizes!  Come show us how creative, funny, heart-wrenching, or inspiring you can be!  You are a BARD! Dazzle us!




Friday 8:00 p.m.

“Bardic Fire Bootcamp” with Lady Elaisse de Garrigues. Come learn some of the most popular songs in Calontir so that you’re ready for Saturday night’s bardic fire. And if you’re an old pro, come sing along!


9:00 a.m.

“Tips for Vocal Performers” with Lady Cristabell Rose Alwin. Real world exercises to improve volume, diction, overcome stage fright, and protect your vocal instrument. Suitable for all levels. Also good for voice heralds and stage actors.

“Medieval Filks” with Honorable Lady Fiondel Songspinner. How often have you heard a song and thought, “I could write a really good filk of that!” But, then thought, “But filk songs aren’t really period, so maybe I shouldn’t.”  Take heart, oh creative Bard!  Filk songs ARE period.  In the middle ages, they were called “contrafacta” and they were very popular.  Not ONLY did they provide the “melody-creating-impaired bard” with a convenient way to write songs, but they frequently had the added bonus of annoying the church (because many of these filk songs were written to well-known hymns).  Come and learn about “period filk songs”!  We will discuss source materials, and places to find period music.

10:00 a.m.

“Together and/or Apart” with Honorable Lady Vǫlu-Ingibiǫrg. Learn songs that sound good alone but can become something more complex if someone else at the fire knows them. We’ll include songs that can be rounds, such as “Lifeblood: a Viking Drinking Song” (a.k.a. “Drink for the Wind Blows Cold”), and songs that make harmony, such as “Stella Splendens in Monte.”

“All About Sonnets” with Honorable Lady Dulcibella de Chateaurien. We will explore what sonnets are, their history, different types of sonnets, the technical and artistic aspects of sonnets, and how to write a sonnet.


11:00 a.m.

“Performance Feedback” with Lady Cristabell Rose Alwin and Master Ravasz Janos. Bring one to two pieces ready to perform for feedback from Lady Christabell, a professional singer/actress with 35+ years stage experience, and Master Ravasz, Calontir’s acting Laurel, with decades of experience in Commedia, comedy and mime, as director, teacher, and performer.

“Music Theory for Medieval People” with Honorable Lord Janos Katona. An explanation of music theory from the perspective of period practice.  Covered will be the Circle of Fifths,
a brief look at period musical notation, and some exploration of harmony and modes and scales.

Lunch and Flytes

1:30 p.m.

“Open Discussion on the Bardic Arts in the SCA” with Master Dolan Madoc.

“Poetic Meters for Songwriters” with Mistress Dorcas Whitecap. Poetic meters are ways to talk about the rhythms found in poems or song lyrics.  This class will cover the different poetic “feet”, with lots of examples to help you remember them.  Learn what iambic pentameter means, and understand why it’s great for a sonnet, but not so good for a song.  Learn the secret of ballad meter, and why it makes a song linger in the mind long after the last note is sung.

2:30 p.m.

“Calontir Canon” with Mistress Dorcas Whitecap. A roundtable discussion on songs that are important to Calontir and why.

“Songwriting 101” with Honorable Lady Adalyde bint Junus al-zaarqa. Learn about songwriting from the creator of some of Calontir’s favorite songs, including “Drums of War” and “Lady in Blue”.

3:30 p.m.

“Roundtable Discussion about the CD-Making Process and Experience” with Honorable Lady Adalyde bint Junus al-zaarqa. Hear about Lady Adalyde’s experience recording and releasing her debut album, “Ultreia”.

“Calontir—A Bardic Telling of History and Culture” with Lord Jon CheseyCome learn of the history and culture of Calontir by hearing (and singing) the songs that define it.

Following court, grab your dinner and join us for more flytes and the bedlam of a Calontir bardic fire!

Questions? Contact the Bardocrat, Lady Elaisse de, FB Sharon Keeling Davis, text (417) 827-7800.

Post expires at 10:54am on Tuesday May 28th, 2019

Another Time & Place: Short-Form History Papers Competition at Lillies 2019

Gleaned from Facebook:

The SCA has come to cover a vast stretch of human history:   all the years before the seventeenth century, all across the world. A wonderful myriad of cultures have thrived in that long time span, and the SCA gives us all opportunities to sample – or drink deeply – from the experiences and examples of these long-ago peoples.

Write a short research paper about a slice of history you find particularly enthralling. It could be a culture, an event, an individual, or a particular historical development.

Tell us something awesome about another time and place!


To Enter:

• Keep your entries to roughly five pages or 2,500 words

• Include your sources in some manner (c’mon, half the fun of reading papers is chasing down new sources)!

• Entry Deadline is 11:59 PM, Sunday May 26th

• Submit papers to Lord Hugo van Harlo


Judging and Prizes:

The Prize:  A Half-Price Books gift card will be awarded to two winners: one Mallet, Swan, or below, and another to a Laurel, Lily, or Hammer.

Judging/Feedback Session:  Wednesday 1:00-3:00; Entrants will be contacted with a specific time slot, but everyone is welcome to come be history geeks together at this time.
Winners will be announced at court.

Location:  Bull Woods’ camp kitchen (across from the showers and Heralds’ Point)

Judges: Three awesome research-loving, history-geeking-out-on, paper-reading, friendly neighborhood Laurels:

Mistress Jorunn Eydisardottir
Master Rhodri ap Hywel
Count Marius Lucian Fidelis

Sponsor:  Lord Hugo van Harlo

Post expires at 1:54pm on Thursday July 4th, 2019

Eyfríðr’s Celtic Book Reviews

Copyist-illuminator. Mid-15th Century. Public domain in the US

Three short book reviews by Lady Eyfríðr Geirsdóttir

Here are my reviews for the first three books of my Celtic research project. I’ve tried to describe the book itself and then my personal thoughts on it — Eyfríðr

The Celts, by Barry Cunliffe

A broad approach to Celtic history, focusing mainly on the late Iron Age and beyond with emphasis on interactions with Rome and linguistics.

Eyfríðr says:  Great for an overall view of the Celtic world, and a nice starting point for research and clarification.

The Origins of the Irish, by JP Mallory

JP Mallory gives himself a valid criticism:  “This book may well be criticized for focusing so much attention on assessing the various hypotheses for immigration into Ireland….and not devoting much space to exploring the genius of the Irish (or Irelanders) in developing their own cultural identity.” There are many theories and not many facts when it comes to the origins of the Irish.

Eyfríðr says:  Essentially just theories of immigration. That information overall was good, the author had a few funny quips, but on the whole his ‘tone’ as a writer came across as quite self-satisfied, which was off-putting for an informational text. 

Archaeology and Celtic Myth: An Exploration, by John Waddell

More archaeology than myth, with reasonable conclusions and interesting parallels between Ireland and Indo-European mythos. Reviews both well-known sites like Tara and lesser known sites. Lots of primary and secondary sources. Focuses on equine ritual, solar worship, sacral kingship, and sovereignty goddesses.

Eyfríðr says:  I expected more myth but was very pleased with the scientific approach to the subject matter. Lots of really fascinating details that make you wonder and wish for a time machine. Reading this made me feel like I got the briefest glimpse into the Iron Age.

Replacement Regalia Bid Proposals

From Their Royal Majesties:

We, the Kingdom, are in need of artisans to place their bid proposals for replacing the Kingdom regalia that was recently stolen. We are opening the bids up to anyone who would like to submit one.

You can see all of the items that need to be replaced and submit your proposals via the form here:

Each item or set of items will need a separate bid proposal, and even one requires a “team bid proposal”.

Bids will close at Midnight on May 11, 2019, the day of St. George and the Dragon.

Thank you, Calontir!