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The Tenth Year

Fall Coronet Tourney -- Principality of Caid
September 13, 1975

Held at Tucker’s Grove Park, above Santa Barbara, CA. Baroness Jessica Lyrindi of Northmarch and Martin the Temperate were the autocrats. The tourney started in the grey misting morning with the court of Prince Thomas and Princess Elaine. Following court Fiona MacGregor (Natalya de Foix) was assassinated by a poisoned kiss from Martin the Temperate. Fiona, who had been forewarned, had left a list of four fighters to avenger here, and Martin was one of them.

The Coronet Lists were held, and Gregory of York was the winner, defeating Morven of Carrick. Vivian Aurora de la Mer was Gregory’s lady. Quetzalochtzin won the contest for the design of coronets for the Prince and Princess of Caid. Bjo of Griffin (Flavia Beatrice Carmigniani) was appointed Principality Chirurgeon. At closing court Prince Thomas gave Awards of Arms to Jocelyn Elspeth Fitzharry of Gillyflower, Jon Trimara, and Sine of the Singing Hands. A revel was held at Martin the Temperate’s home.

From the Crown Prints -- "unofficial" newsletter of Caid
(note: this was added after the Annotated History Project was completed, so no additional commentary is here -- there may be commentary on the Caidan History Website, once that is made available to the public):

On 13 Sept., A.S. X, the Coronet Tourney was held at Tucker’s Grove in the Barony of the Isles. It was a grey, misting morning as the pavillions were set up ­ according to the fighters, perfect fighting weather (tell that to the ladies with damp hems and cold toes!)

After opening court, Viscount Sir Christian, Principality Knight Marshall, briefed the fighters & reviewed the rules of the Lists. Immediately after the meeting, an assassination attempt was perpetrated against Fiona MacGregor; a contract arranged by a Calafian lady was carried out elaborately (& unfortunately, successfully!) by Daniel the Bard and Martin the Temperate. Fiona had been warned of the contract earlier & so left behind a note listing 4 people to avenge her. When this was read aloud over her body, one of her champions was discovered to be Martin himself! ("Make that three" came a voice from beyond). A warning to the Ladies of Caid from the shade of Fiona MacGregor Beware the fatal kisses of Martin the Temperate!!

The Coronet List begain with 2 elimination combats to reduce the number of fighters to 16. After lengthy and strenuous combat, the final 4 fighters were Baron Maihie McFergy, Martin the Temperate, Morven of Carrick and Gregory of York. The silence that settled on the field was an indication of the great attention that was paid by everyone to the day’s fighting. At the end of the semi-finals, Morven of Carrick & Gregory of York were the remaining fighters.

Along with the serious fighting for the coronet of Caid, we saw some nonsense such as the challenge by Martin the Temperate against Morven because he was such a "Carrick-ter", one attack against the battlefield itself by Harsha Aditya because it had too often laid him flat & a return challenge by David the Ironliver against Harsha for attacking an opponent when he was down! To allow time for the finalist to recover their strength, there ensued 2 bone-crunching melees between the ‘Temperance Union’ & the ‘Rustoleum Gang’ where the grunts and groans of the mass of dying fighters was truly glorious. One fighter who had not quite finished his death throes was done in dramatically when one of the larger Isles fighters fell over him!

Then the 2 finalists took the field for the last fight for the Coronet. In a best 2-out-of-3 combat, Gregory of York, Seneschal of Calafia, defeated Morven of Carrick to become the Prince-elect of Caid.

A Privy Council meeting was held after the Lists; coronets were chosen from submitted designs for Gregory and his lady Vivian. The winning design was by Quetzalochtzin (Alicia Austin) & will be executed by Lady Bjo of Griffin and Frances of Dragonsforge. It was decided that for newly appointed officers there would be a period of time for the populace to get to know them before their appointments became official. Their names will be presented to the Privy Council on nomination in order to inform the Council of the pending appointment. (ED. NOTE And a short bio could be placed in THE CROWN PRINTS to introduce appointees to the populace.)

Lady Bjo of Griffin was appointed Principality Chirurgeon & she will be recommending Deputies in each of the Baronies.

Edmund du Battlemont, Chancellor of the Principality Exchequer, reminded all that he must receive reports of all financial activities in Caid. Any Society activity that involved monetary transactions or expenditures should be written up & sent forward through normal channels.

At Closing Court, awards of arms were given to Sine of the Singing Hands (Jeannie Moberly), Jocelyn FitzHarry of Gillyflower (Joyce O’Dell) & John Trimara (Tremain) in the form of promissory notes made on the spot by Ioannes Leckie. Arabella Lyon de Rohase (Carlean Karnatz) was presented with an Order of the Leaf of Merit.

Amadea (Jean Schuck) presented Martin the Temperate with a pure, unadulterated (no nuts!) oatmeal cookie. Martin’s reply (to be read a la Cookie Monster) "COOKIE!" Total mass of the cookie was estimated at approx. 5 kilograms, give or take a pound or two!

Gregory of York received his warrant as Seneschal of Calafia & Fiona MacGregor received hers as Deputy Principality Seneschale (her shade accepted for her!). The formation of the Western Branch of the Veterans of Foreign Wars was announced, to include all past and present subjects of the Kingdom of the West who have attended Pennsic Wars. (If you have about 3 hours & promise not to laugh, ask Charles of Dubline about the rain & the grasshoppers!)

The Insulters Guild, represented by Lady Käthë von Munchausen presented Martin the Temperate and James the Inconstant with a bottle of VERY fermented cider for the most ‘turkey’ challenges of the day.

At the end of Court, Gregory of York and his lady Vivian were called before Prince Thomas the Merciless and Princess Elaine to receive their rosemary wreaths, officially designating them the incipient Prince and Princess of Caid. They will be crowned in Dreiburgen in November.

The Tourney ended, people repaired to various eating places ­ recommended for the next time you are in Isles Pancho Villa’s on Calle Real; good food, lots of it & very reasonable.

The Revel was at Martin the Temperate’s & various sorts of entertainment were provided belly dancing, swimming (medieval & otherwise) & an impromptu sing-thing spurred on by the vigorous encouragement of William of Dover. Viscount Sir Christian and Baron Pwyll treated the assembled folk to what sounded like Old-Timer’s Night at the Revel, with a misty-eyed rendition of something blue-grass (we think), As always, a good time was had by all!

--Lady Fiona MacGregor’s ghost
(reported by Nancy Berman)

“I never liked the "chirurgeon" title because of two mistakes that occurred early on. My feeling was, and still is, that something as basically necessary as "first aid" should be called just that, or "medic" but not a tongue-twisting medieval name.
     “At one public event (and I may remember which when I'm not so tired) a mundane fainted. His companions set up a cry for help, and an even noisier SCA person started calling "chirurgeon." This stopped the mundanes from going for nearby EMT help, because they thought the SCAer was calling "surgeon" and the little freckled lady trotting forward with the Plano tool box was a qualified medical doctor. Luckily, it wasn't a real heart attack, but very valuable time was wasted that might have meant that man's life. It scared me badly.
     “Another incident was at a park somewhere in the West, where a kid managed to cut himself with dad's knife (dad wasn't handling it right, either). The cry of "chirurgeon" went up, and as -- at the time -- the only acting medic on the entire west coast, I went to see what was wrong. A genuine doctor picnicking nearby also came to see what was wrong. He challenged my use of the word "chirurgeon" as fraudulent, suggesting that I was putting myself in serious legal trouble if someone wanted to sue. He also suggested that the proper term for my form of first aid would have more properly be called "leech" in medieval days. He was probably right.
     “At any rate, some people never got used to calling for "chirurgeon" when yelling "medic!" got the same results.” – Flavia Beatrice Carmigniani

“The assassination was part of a series of deeds noted for the craft and finesse with which one could carry them out. They had been sponsored by the Assassin's Guild which had a short (and somewhat turbulent) run in Caid. I had recently been done in by a bottle of home brew which had a curious green tinge, hidden within its brown glass container. I took it in good jest, I knew it was coming, just not from whom (Sir Christian of Orange,) nor how ... Fiona thought it quite humorous, so I took up the challenge, secretly let it be known who the victim would be (part of the rules), and that she would be done in at the next coronet tourney. I then convinced her I wasn't pleased with the whole concept and that I would attend to her throughout the tourney. She picked a number of protectors. I suggested we would be more motivated with a kiss. I let the others kiss her first. When I kissed her, she remarked how sweet my lips were, literally, as I had lathered them up with a strawberry unguent. I raised my brows, winked at her and gently eased her to the ground saying she would sleep until avenged, which happened later in the day.
     “Gregory arrived with a coffin shaped heater which covered him from the eyeslots to his knees, and more importantly, he arrived with a faster flat snap than had been seen in Caid to that point. He just beat everybody to the punch. (I had been considered a viable contender but had lost my aluminum oval shield coming back from the 4th Pennsic War, and couldn't find an adequate round shield. I ended up with a heater, never did like them much.) It's interesting that Gregory should win his first major tournament with raw speed as he would later refine and hone his skills as the superlative swordsman and most of his career is marked by finesse and craft.” – Martin the Temperate

“I believe this is the Coronet that Sir Hugh the Undecided was taken out in the first round by Lord Mouice the Insane. (Mouice the Insane once lost a fight to a pell). Hugh blamed Bjo for giving him bioplasm before the fight. At the time I don't think any of us had heard of bioplasm. In any case, Gregory was very hot (and well-protected) that day, winning over the 3 Brotherhood fighters (Morven,Maihie, & Martin I believe) that were left at the semi-finals.” – Charles of Dublin

“As official Caidan First-Aider, I dispensed salt tablets to fighters, since that was the current wisdom of dealing with people who insisted on engaging in physical activity in hot weather, such as running around hitting each other with rattan sticks. Hugh took 3 tablets and a glass of water, immediately went on the field to fight, and was promptly killed by Mouice the Insane. Nobody could believe that could happen! Even I was surprised, and I seldom paid much attention to the fighting, except to tally up how many stretch bandages I'd lose to fighters who never returned them. Hugh always blamed me (humorously, I hope) for his losing that fight, though the salt tablets would not have had a chance to dissolve in his system in that short a time.” – Flavia Beatrice Carmigniani
“Salt tablets were pretty awful ... I only fought in the one field melee that made up the London Bridge War because the salt tablet I took made me feel ill. But Hugh certainly did not lose that fight because of salt tablets he had just taken, as Bjo noted. Hugh knew Mouice too well, and consequently did not consider him a threat. But every fighter on the field may be the one who kills you.
     “Very few people in Caid had noticed how quick Gregory was before this day, but Gregory fought David the Iron Livered in the first or second round, and flat-snapped him before David had even thrown a single blow. David was a very large, very physical fighter who was sometimes hard to kill, and there was not a word spoken around the eric as everyone waited to see if he would take the blow. David had frozen in mid-charge when Gregory hit him, and after about two seconds, he slowly toppled over, his sword arm still raised to strike.” – Robear du Bois

Description of this event, © Copyright 1980 by William R. Keyes (Wilhelm von Schlüssel)
This is from The History of the West Kingdom, Volume 1 (the only volume produced), except for the information provided from the Crown Prints, the newsletter of Caid, by Jared Blaydeaux, at a later date. When reading this text, please keep in mind the following disclaimer:

Disclaimer: This history may have errors in it, as much of the detail is “remembered” history, or as one of the cover pages of the original type-written manuscript states “The material within is derived from the information printed in The Crown Prints and in The Page, and from the memories of the participants.” The original document was typed on onion-skin paper, with hand-written notes (often in the margins). All attempts have been made to reconcile the notes with the original document.

Annotations, when they are added, are from The Annotated History of the West, Volume 1, which is the same text as Master Wilhelm's mentioned above, with commentary from members of the SCA who were active at the time of the event, and are added to help clarify questions and expand on what happened and why. This volume is copyright © Ken Mayer (Hirsch von Henford).

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