THE CODE OF LAWS OF THE KINGDOM OF THE WEST:
THE CODE OF LAWS OF THE KINGDOM OF THE WEST:
As proclaimed by order of King Jean I, on the first day of
May, Anno Societatus VI, and amended in the reign of
King Hagen the Strong, 7 Juin, Anno Societatis VI.*
ARTICLE I - THE LAW
The King's word is Law, and any Proclamation of the King is the Law of the Kingdom, from the
moment it is spoken, subject only to the By-Laws of the Society for Creative Anachronism, Inc., and
the discretion of the Board of Directors. However, until such proclamation shall have been
presented in writing to the populace of the Kingdom, no subject of the
Kingdom may be considered to be breaking the King's Law in acting contrary to such proclamation.
ARTICLE II - The Tournaments
and the Crown
There shall be three Official Crown Tournaments and three Official Coronation Festivals per year
in the Kingdom of the West and they shall occur on the weekend nearest to, or if it is
a Wednesday, then next following:
6 January - Coronation Festival (Twelfth Night Revel)
And these six Official events shall occur within the counties bordering the Great Bay of St. Francis
in the heartland of our Kingdom. Except that the King reigning at the time of the scheduling these events
may grant exceptions as to date or place for sufficient reasons. The exact dates, and normally
the locations, of all events shall be made known to the populace by 1 December for the following year.
In addition, firm dates for the following three events shall be made known to the combatants by
the beginning of each Crown Lists.
Sec. 2 - Each fighter, upon entering the Crown Lists, must declare that he will be available
for the weekend during which his Coronation would occur, the weekend of the next Crown
Tournament, and the weekend of the Coronation of his successor - for no man may enter
the Crown Lists without intending to win the Crown, and no man may intend
to win the Crown without intending to reign as King.
And, should the Crown Prince, through no fault of his own, be unable to attend
the Coronation Festival whereat he would have been crowned, such steps
shall be taken as seem necessary and as are acceptable both to the Crown Prince
and to the King, that the Crown Prince may achieve his Crown and become King.
But, should the Crown Prince fail in intent to reign, and should great and
sufficient evidence of this failure be presented to the King, the King shall call
Curia Regis to consider the matter. And, should the decision in Curia Regis be
that the Crown Prince has not failed in intent, then the King shall take such
steps as are necessary and as are acceptable to both the Crown Prince and
the King, that the Crown Prince may achieve his Crown. But, should the decision
in Curia Regis be that the Crown Prince has failed in intent, then the Crown Prince
shall be instructed to attend the Coronation Festival as scheduled or to
abdicate, and should the Crown Prince elect to abdicate, either
directly or through his failure to respond or attend, then at the beginning
of the Coronation Festival, a Crown Lists shall be called, to be comprised of all fighters
present who had participated in the last Crown Lists whereat the former Crown Prince
won, saving the former Crown Prince. And the winner of these Crown Lists shall become
Crown Prince and he and his lady will immediately be crowned King and Queen
of the Kingdom of the West.
Sec. 3 - No King or Queen shall, within their Reign, hold any other Office
within the Kingdom of the West or the Society, for at the moment of Coronation
all other offices formerly held by the new King or Queen shall be held to be
in abeyance for the duration of their reign. The new King shall provide for the
temporary filling of such offices during his Reign, normally by a person already
designated as Chief Deputy to that Office.
Sec. 4 - In that it is the duty of all belted fighters to provide a proper
example of readiness for those who aspire to that rank, no Knight or
Master-at-Arms who does not come equipped with helm, shield, and weapon
for his exclusive use at that event, duly examined and passed by the King or
his representative, may fight. Neither shall any fighter bear upon the field
any arms or device not his own, nor badge save by fealty to or affiliation
with the holder thereof, unless due to unusual circumstances the King shall personally
grant a temporary exception in a specific case.
ARTICLE III - Officers and Duties
Sec. 1 - There shall be six Great Officers of State of this Kingdom and they
shall be the King's Ministers and sit with the King in Curia Regis. These Officers
shall be: The Lord High Chancellor - Lord Advocate, the Seneschal, the Earl-Marshal,
the Herald, the Master or Mistress of Arts, and the Chancellor of the Exchequer.
These officers shall be responsible to the King to carry out the laws and affairs
of this Kingdom and to the Board of Directors of the Society
to conform to the bylaws and directives of that body and to safeguard the interests
and honor of the Society for Creative Anachronism, Inc. These responsibilities shall
not conflict, inasmuch as the King is equally bound to honor the same responsibilities
as the Great Officers of State. All Great Officers of State shall be considered to be
equal in rank as the King's Ministers.
Sec. 2 - From this day forward, Great Officers of State shall be appointed to or
removed from office by the King with the consent of the Board of Directors of the Society.
All lesser officers of this Kingdom shall be appointed or removed by the appropriate
Great Officer of State with the signed warrant of the King, except that in the
absence or unavailability of the King, said Great Lord may make such appointments as are
essential to the well-being of the kingdom, to be subsequently confirmed by the King, and
shall be responsible to the King and to the appropriate Great Officers of State. No Great
or Lesser Officer of this Kingdom shall henceforth make proclamations concerning the
general functioning of the Kingdom.
Sec. 3 - The Lord High Chancellor shall serve as chief legal advisor to the
King and shall carry out such other duties as are appropriate to the post.
Sec. 4 - The Seneschal shall be the principal legal representative of the Society
within the Kingdom, shall have ultimate responsibility for planning and carrying out
all official events of the Kingdom, and shall carry out such other duties as are
appropriate to the post.
Sec. 5 - The Earl-Marshal shall have primary responsibility for the conduct
of combat upon the tourney field and for insuring the reasonable safety
of such combat, and shall carry out such other duties as are appropriate to the post.
Sec. 6 - The Herald shall be the King's Official Voice upon the field, shall be head of the
Kingdom's College of Heralds, and shall carry out such other duties as are appropriate
to the post.
Sec. 7 - The Master or Mistress of Arts shall be responsible for the encouragement
and development of the Arts within the Kingdom and shall carry out such other duties
as are appropriate to the post.
Sec. 8 - The Chancellor of the Exchequer shall be responsible for the collection,
safeguarding, and disbursement of the monies of the Kingdom and shall carry out
such duties as are appropriate to the post.
Sec. 9 - Each Great Officer of State shall have such deputies, assistance,
and subordinates as are necessary to the functions of the office. Such lesser
officers are appointed or removed as provided in Sec. 2 of this Article. The
Constable shall be under the Lord High Chancellor's Office; Knights-Marshal shall be under
the Earl Marshal's Office; the Mistress of the Lists and all degrees of heraldic
officials under the Herald's Office; the dancing master, the mistress of music,
the mistress of the robes, and the head of the College of Bards, and all other such
persons as shall be in charge of the various arts, under the Office of the Mistress
of Arts; and the Chatelaine, the Keeper of the Royal Pavilion, the Order of the Golden
Key, and other appropriate officials under the Seneschal's Office. The Tourneymaster
and his assistants shall be appointed by the King upon join recommendation of the Seneschal,
the Earl-Marshal, and the Herald, and shall have responsibilities to all the foregoing
officers in their appropriate jurisdictions, specifically to the Seneschal for securing
dates and places for general organization and scheduling of events, to the Earl-Marshal
for proper laying out of the lists, and to the Herald in matters of ceremony.
The Grand Archer or Archeress, the Javelinmaster, the Wrestlingmaster, the Master
or Mistress of Equestrian Arts, and other officials conducting special events
other than actual combat shall be directly responsible to the King, but shall coordinate
their activities with the Seneschal, the Tourneymaster, and other officials as
is necessary. Lesser Officers of State not specifically mentioned herein shall
function as their superior officers or the King may direct.
Sec. 10 - There shall be a Council of Arms, consisting of five fighters
chosen for their interest in authenticity, safety, and innovation, whose duty
it shall be to advise the King concerning suitability and safety of weapons upon
request. In addition, the Earl-Marshal and the Dukes shall serve as members ex-officio
of this Council.
ARTICLE IV - Courts
Sec. 1 - The Courts of this Kingdom shall be Curia Regis, the Court of
Chancery, and such special courts as the King may periodically convene as need
arises. Each Court shall be concerned with those matters delegated to it by
the King. The Court of Chivalry, although by definition a Society,
rather than a Kingdom, court, may from time to time meet to decide matters referred
to it by the King.
Sec. 2 - Curia Regis shall consist of the King, who convenes this Court and
presides over it, his Ministers (the Six Great Officers of State), and such
other persons as the King may desire to include at a particular meeting of the Court.
Any subject of the King may attend open sessions of this Court and may petition
the Crown upon matters relevant and appropriate. Decisions of this Court
shall be by the King, after hearing the advice of his Ministers.
Sec. 3 - The Court of Chancery shall consist of the Lord High Chancellor,
who shall preside, and such other persons as he shall determine from time to time.
This Court shall decide matters involving interpretation of the law of the Kingdom,
and such other matters as may be referred to it by the King.
Sec. 4 - The Court of Chivalry is under the jurisdiction of the Lord Laurel
King of Arms, therefore it is concerned with Society, rather than Kingdom law.
It shall consist of the earl Marshal, the Premier Peer of the realm (i.e., the King),
a Herald, and the Lord Chancellor or legal officer, and any others the Earl Marshal
shall see fit to appoint. The Seneschal ought also to be present. This court
shall be concerned with matters of chivalry, claims to arms, interpretation of the
Rules of the Lists, and also such other matters as may be referred to it by the
Lord Laurel King of Arms or the King.
ARTICLE V - Orders
Sec. 1 - The King may grant the Order of the Leaf of Merit to those persons he finds
deserving of such honor for whatever reason, but normally involving substantial
service to the Kingdom or the Society of a substantial period of time, particularly
of a sort that does not inherently attract great public attention. This Order
shall carry with it an Award of Arms, and shall rank immediately after Grants of
Arms and ahead of all other Awards of Arms.
ARTICLE VI - Previous Proclamations
All proclamations of all previous reigns not incorporated herein are hereby
rescinded, that there may be but one body of law of this realm, but all current
officeholders of the Kingdom do retain their offices, subject to the foregoing provisions
of this Code. Further, this Code is presented with the expectation that it will
be expanded and developed during succeeding reigns in accord with the needs of the
Kingdom and the By-laws of the Society and directives of the Board.
21 March - Crown Tournament (Spring Equinox)
1 May - Coronation Festival Tournament (May Day and S.C.A. New Year's)
21 June - Crown Tournament (Summer Solstice)
1 August - Coronation Festival Tournament (Lammastide)
21 September (or if that shall conflict with the Renaissance Pleasure Faire, then the second weekend
following that Faire) - Crown Tournament (Autumn Equinox)
Given under our Hand and Seal this 7th day of June, Anno Societatis VI
HAGEN, Rex Regni Occidentalis
* As published in the June, 1971 issue of The Page.
The original was completely in italics, I chose to not do that ... -- Hirsch von Henford,
Historian and person who transcribed this ...
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