Kingdom Arms by Robin of Thornwood Calligraphy by Robin of Thornwood Populous Badge by Robin of Thornwood

The Eleventh Year

Purgatorio Coronation
July 31-August 1, 1976

From The Page (July, 1976):

[Items here are from officer reports and other announcements -- there is no Purgatorio event copy ... I included the items below here because they are referenced in the event copy in the August issue of The Page. Hirsch]


The Office of the Kingdom Earl Marshall will hold a Warrior Arts Pentathlon at this year's Purgatorio. Run along the lines similar to the annual Arts Pentathlon, it will test not only the combat skills, but the wider field of knowledge of Medieval Warior Arts.

Up to eight events may be entered, with the best five scores (of which a maximum of three may be a single combat) counting toward the final score. Non-fighters may enter the non-combat events, and are invited to do so.

Any eveng with less than four entrants will not be judged, although those who do enter will receive half the points awardable for the event. Marshalls are permitted to deduct points for unsportsmanlike conduct or rule infractions in the fighting events. Proctors will do likewise in non-fighting events. In contests such as archery and thrown weapons, there will be an automatic one point bonus for having and using one's own equipment. This is also true of fighting events which do not use the standard SCA weapons.

The fighting events will be: sword and shield; impact weapon and shield; longsword; poleweapon, double weapon; two-on-one; and fighting with the off hand.

The non-fighting events will be: combat archery; heraldry (identification and blazonry); horsemanship (knowledge and skill); thrown weapons (knives, axes, javelins, and spears); armouring (knowledge and construction); falconry (knowledge and care and training); strategy (offense and defense); and chivalrous behavior.

It is hoped that the populace will enter this Pentathlon in droves, fighters and non-fighters alike. The research and training necessary to excell should prove as beneficial as the final outcome.


The competition for the Purgatorio Coronation Festival is Snowbound. Snowbound is: you are snowbound in a castle (cottage, hut, or manor) with only the following ingredients available. You need not use them all, but use nothing else. Cook dinner.

water, of course
some chickens (and, therefore, a few eggs)
some corn (which was stocked to feed the chickens: this is not American corn (maize), but European "corn")
the spice cabinet has anything you want
so does the wine cellar
someone shot two rabbits this afternoon
there is lots of whole wheat flour
dried peas
dried white beans

From The Page (August, 1976):

PURGATORIO HAS MOVED! Due to the high risk of fire at Big Trees, the powers that be have decided to hold this annual festival at Frontierland Park, in Pacifica (just south of San Francisco). If there are any last-minute changes of location, directions will be posted at the gate to Frontierland Park. Pacifica is close to the ocean, so warm cloaks may be advisable. Also, there are close (but not too close) neighbors, and it might be advisable to keep a closer than usual eye on valuables.

At presstime, many of the details had not all been ironed out, but we do know that set-up will be Saturday morning around 8:00 AM. Opening court and the Coronation will be at 10:30 AM. Other events will take place according to a schedule set out at opening court.

There will be a number of contests and activities, among them the on-going Arts Pentathlon (baking of breads, cakes or pastries; costuming; singing, which will be judged at the Bardic Circle; poetry; and music composition, which should be given to the Mistress of Arts at the Festival, and will be judged between Purgatorio and the September Crown Tourney).

The Warrior Arts Pentathlon will be held as outlined in the July issue of The PAGE.

Juding of the entries in the Order of the Wooden Spoon Contest for "Snowbound" (see July PAGE for details) will be held.

The Order of Arachne's Web will sponsor a cut and drawn lace making competition. The entry may be anything so long as it is embellished with some sort of cut and drawn work.

There will be three Equestrian Arts competitions: costume, rescue race, and ring tilting, this last counting towards the total points score in the Warrior Arts Pentathlon. Those planning to bring horses will have to make arrangements to stable them, as no facilities exist at the site. The College of Equestrian Arts has lined up inexpensive accommodations at the "Coastside Corral", which is a half-mile away. To partake of these accomodations, call ...

The College of Equestrian Arts is also sponsoring an ice cream feed, originally scheduled for June Crown Tourney.

The Province of Southern Shores' Byzantine Household of Vaspurkan will hold an auction of stained glass panels, silver and copper cloak clasps, pendants, rings, fabric trim, and stationery. The proceeds will go to the Land Fund.

From The Page (October, 1976):

An Open Letter to Members and Newcomers Attending the Purgatorio, July 31 and August 1, AS XI.

At about 7:00 a.m., as I was on my way to perform my morning ablutions, I was shaken into full wakefulness by a distressing sight. A young woman wearing a white gown had been tied by twine to the pole opposite the royal pavillion, and people were surrounding her with firewood, laughing and joking all the way.

Not quite believing what I had seen, I passed by, shaking my head. After my ablutions, I approached the stake again. Yes, she was still there, protesting her innocence of the crime of witchcraft; there was a two or three foot high ring of firewood around her. Now that I knew this was no apparition, I went to get my trusty dagger.

She was still "protesting" when I returned, but a new person had joined the group, apparently her mother, understandably annoyed with her wayward offspring. Amid groans of "party pooper!", I loaned the mother my dagger so that she could cut her daughter down. I gathered that the young lady had been a willing participant in the performance, as part of a wager, probably as a result of large quantities of small mead, or other intoxicants the night before.

At that time, I gave the participants and audience two strong reasons why the farce should not continue. The first reason is obvious: the large danger of fire spreading to the area. Witches and heretics produce a large and hot blaze, which is difficult to extinguish, and polluting besides.

The second reason is even more serious and the reason for this letter. It has to do with what the SCA is all about. During my year and a half of participation in the SCA, I have been given to understand that it is devoted to the Middle Ages as they could have been, not the bloody, disease and persecution-ridden times we have read they actually were.

Ah, yeah, and you say to yourself, here's another humorless pagan. Don't those wicca know how to take a joke? Well, I ask you, just how funny do you find a pogrom, or lions and Christians in the arena? There is a saying among my people which the rest of you might do well to examine closely. It isn't just another political slogan. "Never again the burning." If we're first, if one of my sisters or brothers burns today, look to yourselves. No one is safe in a witchhunt. Chances are, your turn will come tomorrow.

Now I realize, in remembering who was at the stake that morning, that most of the participants were relative newcomers, perhaps at their second, third, or even first event. So I shall try to be loving and gentle in instruction those of you who brought faggots to the stake. You obviously did not have a clear idea of what we are about in the Current Middle Ages. Read your "Queen Carol's Guide", borrow some old "PAGE's" or "TI's", attend the sessions at Ithra, or ask people. I have found Dukes, Heralds, Seneschals, and many others of rank or none, to be very gracious in answering my persistant questions on how we do things in the SCA, and why.

Please, let us not have a repetiton of that morning at the tourney. I assure you, pagans and wicca do have a sense of humor (which is not always understood), but it isn't very funny when our entire existence is threatened.

I write this only to express my own opinion, not presuming to speak for other pagans or wicca, but it is my hope that after soul searching, my sisters and brothers will at least nod their heads in concurrence.

Blessed be.

Treya N'Iurge ar Glanabred

From the History (by Wilhelm):

Held at Big Trees Park, Redwood Regional Park, Oakland, California. King Paul and Queen Carol held court. Prince Morven of Carrick, Prince of Caid, was present. Baron Gerhard Kendal of Westmoreland and Baroness Amanda Kendal of Westmore land were presented with the Baronial Charter for the Barony of Lion’s Guard. King Paul gave Awards of Arms to Geoffrey of Northhaven, James Drakeslayer, Kahina Dhahabiya al Lailat, Lucinda Cottonwoods, and Markus the Blue. King Paul admitted April of the Dales, Edward of Southhaven and James Drakeslayer to the Order of the Leaf of Merit. King Paul then admitted Allysen of Dunrobin to the Order of the Laurel. Queen Carol expressed her thanks to the members of the Queen’s Guard and to her Ladies-In-Waiting. Then Queen Carol gave her Queen’s Cypher to Ealasaid NicChlurain, Su of the Silver Horn, Virginia of Enso, and finally to King Paul of Bellatrix. Queen Carol then admitted Fiona Gregorovna (Natalya de Foix), Gabrielle NicChlurain, Matriona du Cameliard, and Susanne Justine of King’s Harbour to the Queen’s Order of Grace. She called up her Queen’s Advisors to thank them for their research papers. Prince Kevin Peregrynne turned the office of Earl Marshall to Sir Iain of Cawdor, naming him Acting Earl Marshall. Irene of the Marsh turned the post of Royal Archer over to Sir Jon Fitz-Rolf. Sir Robert of Westmarch turned the office of Constable over to Olaf the Maedi-Ogre.

The coronation began with a Grand March. At the end of the march came the members of the Barony of Golden Rivers, all dressed in blue and white, who formed an aisle for the coronation party. Preceded by the Knights of the Silver Molet in their white cloaks, Prince Kevin Peregrynne and Princess Patrice du Couer Fidel came forward to the thrones. After swearing an oath of fealty and protection to the populace of the West they were crowned King and Queen by Paul and Carol. After the Knights and the Great Lords of State had sworn fealty, the other Peers of the Realm (The Orders of the Rose, the Laurel, and the Pelican) were invited to swear fealty. Many did. King Kevin and Queen Patrice then accepted presentations from the populace, including a replacement pandybat for the Princess Kelly. King Kevin gave Awards of Arms to Holly of Charlesboro and Virginia of Enso. The Martial Arts Pentathlon, the Wooden Spoon Competition, and several categories in the Arts Pentathlon occupied the rest of the day.

The next day saw the conclusion of these events, an archery competition, and the abduction of Baroness Amanda Kendal of Westmoreland by a group of fighters led by Baron Waldt von Markheim. The ensuing rescue attempt failed and the Baroness was rescued only by the fact that the abductors then fought over her and killed themselves to the last man. At closing court Baron Gerhard Kendal of Westmoreland declared that a state of war existed between the Barony of Lion’s Gate and the Barony of Dreiburgen. Baron Waldt von Markheim returned the declaration of war. About the time that they were discussing a fight in the neutral no man’s land in-between to determine who got the unclaimed territory in-between them, King Kevin stood up, called for the Great Sword of State to lean on, and declared: “You fellahs are gonna get youah party crashed.” Order was attained, with Baron Gerhard saying that he was only trying to be in period, and his research had indicated that barons were always stirring up trouble so ...

King Kevin then gave an Award of Arms to Christopher of Hoghton and a Grant of Arms to Cadwalladyr Stone of Stonecroft. King Kevin made Clarissa of Red Crab Manor on the James, Kaththea verKaeysc, and Matriona du Cameliard Court Baronesses. Adrienne of Toledo was the winner in the Wooden Spoon contest for “Snowbound.” Jeffrey Brokenblade won the Archery contest. Bergen von Rauch presented the Old Battered Helm to Martin the Temperate. In the Arts Pentathlon, the Music Composition category was postponed, Duchess Verena of Laurelin won the Cooking and Costume categories, Singing was won by Fiona Gregorovna (Natalya de Foix), and Poetry was won by Rima of Rockridge. The winner of the Martial Arts Pentathlon was Duke Paul of Bellatrix, followed by Duke James Greyhelm and Sir Martin the Temperate. Neal Gyrfalcon had the highest score for a noncombattant.

See photos from this event

Kevin Peregrynne
Sable, on a bend sinister argent
a peregrine falcon descending,
talons extended and wings
addorsed, azure.
Patrice di Coeur Fidel
Argent, upon a heart gules another
Or, within a bordure engrailed azure.
Arms drawn by Nicholas Bawcock of Petersfield, used with permission

“During Their Majesties Kevin and Patrice's first court, They were presented with our children for the weekend. We said that we would feed, sleep, etc them, but that they would be in service to Their Majesties if they could use them. Our children were Melissa Kendal of Westmoreland, then 12 and Andre Lessard, then 10. Melissa, who found out many things by being in service at that event, went on to become a Pelican, Queen of AnTir for Twenty Year Celebration, and the person who did the bid for 3YC. She also teaches a class on History of AnTir (lots of war stories, 11 hrs long last time). Andre spent much of the time at that event, trailing after His Majesty as he circled the eric, holding an umbrella over His Majesties head (and needing to be on tiptoes). Andre went on to invent El Tablero de Gucci (now played world wide) and win the El Tablero World Championship among other things. Sorry - the ramblings of a proud mother.
     [... the abduction of Baroness Amanda Kendal of Westmoreland by a group of fighters led by Baron Waldt von Markheim.] “Not Me!! Not Me!! I would have loved to be abducted by Baron Waldt. He actually abducted a lady (although she calls herself a possession and not a lady, she has strange attitudes) who looks amazingly like me and is part of our household. Her name is Sem Sem, she is from Morocco, she wears strange (at least to my eyes) garb, and jingles when she walks. She was absolutely devastated by that abduction, not wanting to have all that attention (she is much more retiring than me) or bringing worry to her master - Gerhard. This abduction led to the first of Lions Gate's many wars. But we are a peace-loving Barony.
     “BTW, many years later, I was standing duty at the gate of a July Coronation in AnTir with a gentleman from West Kingdom. As is usual, we started to talk about how we first found out about the SCA. He said that he and his lady wife would have joined 12 years earlier than they did, but when they phoned Milpitas for information back in August of 1976, everyone was talking about a baroness being abducted. They didn't want to join any club that had abductions. They didn't know that the whole thing had been planned. I believe that the war was to decide where the dividing line was between the two Baronies.” – Amanda Kendal of Westmoreland

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). 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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The West Kingdom History Website was created by and is maintained by Hirsch von Henford (mka Ken Mayer).