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

The Fifteenth Year

Beltane Coronation
May 3-4, 1980 (AS XV)

From The Page (May, 1980):

You are invited to come and pay your respects to the first Cynaguans to hold the Throne of the West, Crown Prine Strider and Crown Princess Kathryn, at the Coyote Hills Regional Park in Fremont, California. Set-up will begin on Friday evening and opening court will be at 10 am Saturday. Their Highnesses will be crowned in a candlelight ceremony Saturday evening. There will be time for war related activities on Saturday, as well as challenges and melees in the afternoon. A lists for Queen's Champion will take place on Sunday.

See photos of this event

From The Page (June, 1980):

In a circle of green hills, their lower slopes glowing yellow with wild mustard, lies a marshy valley alive with the singing of birds. Here, on a small grassy space of solid ground, the inhabitants of the West gathered to usher in the May and celebrate the coronation of their new monarchs.

On Saturday morning, as a light breeze began to dispel the Principality's mists, subjects were summoned to the final court of Their Majesties, Christopher and Esmirelda. Mistress Kreimhild of Stonecroft came forward to offer her resignation as Kingdom Mistress of Arts, nominating her successor Baroness Freydis Tollefsdottir. There followed numerous and beautiful presentations.

These festivities were interrupted by the precipitate arrival of Lord Catalin di Napoli, bearing an empty collar and leash and with the appearance of one in great distress. Falling on his knees before Her Majesty, he presented Her with the collar and begged her forgiveness for having allowed Her Royal Lizard to escape. Profuse were Lord Catalin's apologies (muffled somewhat by the dust in his mouth), and graciously did Queen Esmirelda forgive him. Her errant subject retired backward, bowing in a manner strongly suggesting the existence of a Royal Frog.

The populace was reminded by the Seneschal that if attending the June Crown Tournament in An Tir, they should be aware of the notorious and omni-present watch-dragons of that country, who lurk in wait to seize travellers whose wagons exceed a suitable and lawful pace. (He spoke feelingly of the painful bite of these guardians of the highways. Ye have been warned.)

Lord Ahmed ibn Tr'bai announced that, in the twofold interest of preserving historical traditionsa nd promoting the study of arcane lore, he has formed under Royal Charter, th eRoyal Society of Western Citizens for the Preservation of Shastan Fighting Techniques. It is hoped that by studying the past, Western subjects will avoid repeating it.

In the afternoon, while the ladies gathered to elect the Philanderer of the Year, melees and challenges were fought upon the field. There followed a lull, as all prepared for the solemn ceremony of Coronation. Even the stars in their courses seemed to attend the rite for a conjunction of the Kingly planet Jupiter with war-ruling Mars was that day augmented by the proximity of Regulus ("little king"), a chief star of the heavenly Lion. Venus, the evening star shed its gentle light above the Royal Pavilion as King Christopher and Queen Esmirelda, arrayed all in white, took their places on the thrones. Amid the twilight hush were heard the sweet strains of a harp, sounding notes of stately melancholy while Their Majesties with poignant speeches took leave of their subjects. Ere this, however, the Knights and Masters-at-Arms had come to kneel before the King, seeking, they said, "one who should be of our order, who is not among us." Brandon d'Arindel was accordingly knighted, His Majesty administering the accolade right royally.

Then came forward Crown Prince Strider, escorted by his household, to claim the throne he had won. All stood silent to hear him swear the oath of fealty to his kingdom, before his head bent to receive the Crown. Two valiant Knights of the Silver Molet escorted Crown Princess Kathryn to her lord's presence, where she in her turn swore fealty and was adorned with the robes of state. In the deepening dusk, as circles of lamplight began to shine among the assembled populace and the harp evoked a mood of gentle dignity, His Majesty gave and received the solemn oaths of fealty and courtesy from his Knights and Masters, the Great Officers of State, and the nobility of the West. After the investiture of the new Queen's Guard, Queen's Archers, and King's Yeomen, and the appointment of Sir Thomas the Incomplete as Queen's Champion, Their Majesties declared court at an end. As the reveling began, House Convivial and House Chaotica of Silver Desert presented the new King and Queen with a miniature throne of polished wood, embellished with the Duramen arms and a label of cadency, for the use of Prince Shannon, the Prince Royal. The Shire of Vinhold presented a vintage bottle of "more than adequate" wine.

After an evening of much and varied merriment, Sunday morning dawned clear and bright, an auspicious beginning for the new reign. The Riding of Wolfscairn provided a breakfast to benefit the Land Fund. At court, the Grand March was followed by a Children's Grand March at Her Majesty's request. It was a pretty sight to see these younglings, many with a grace and bearing beyond their years, come forward one by one to receive a cookie and a Royal smile. Last of all came the little prince ("Hide the cookies," said his lady mother), who was lifted into Her Majesty's lap munching happily.

Christopher of Hoghton and Esmirelda Dancingstar were created Earl and Countess, and given scrolls most beautifully wrought by Merewyn de Lyonesse. Among the presentations were several sets of goblets, one thoughtful subject also providing Their Majesties with a bottle of sparkling cider. Their Highnesses of the Mists gave to King Strider a scroll bearing the signatures of those whom they had enlisted to fight beneath His banner against Caid, and pledged Their full support in the approaching conflict. Aelfwynn Gyrthesdohtor was announced as the winner of the Wooden Spoon "Fighter's Lunch" competition. Her Majesty then summoned before her Earl Christopher who was given the pleasing news that he had been chosen Philanderer of the year. The Earl was even more pleased to learn that this honour would entitle him to hold up the Maypole that afternoon.

The afternoon was enlivened by a performance of Gerhardt von Nordflammen's "The Queen's Tale," a comedy of manners.

Practice for war with Caid occupied the time until an early final Court, at which the Order of the Battered Helm was awarded to Count Master Frederick, the Banner Herald, always seemed to acquire a speedy rigor mortis in his arm, enabling the banner to remain upright at all times. The floral lace competition held by the Order of Arachne's Web was won by Micaela de Neuville, for a crocheted doily surrounded with pansies. Winners of the Fine Arts competitions were announced, and then all departed to begin the journey home, having witnessed a miracle: for even amid continual sunshine there were two good reigns.

(The author is Kerswind of Caerlaverock)

Strider of Duramen,
the Persistent

Argent, a bend sinister argent,
fimbriated, overall a winged
unicorn salient sable, armed,
unguled, and collared of a
label trailing a broken chain Or,
on a chief sable a label
throughout argent.
Kathryn Dhil Lorriel
Argent, on a bend sinister gules
cotised sable a Lady Banks rose
slipped and leaved
proper. [Rosa ladybanksiana]
Arms by Beatrix zum Dunklenturm

Description of this event (if any), taken from The Page, or from memory of at least one person who attended the event.

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