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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

Sec. 1
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)
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)
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.

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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