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

The Nineteenth Year

Oertha's First Coronet Tournament and Investiture
January 19-20, 1985

From The Page (December, 1984):

First Oertha Coronet
Tourney and Winterfeast

January 19 and 20, 1985, in Anchorage, Alaska (event site: Viking Hall, (address omitted))

Tickets (includes site fee, Saturday's feast and Sunday breakfast): $15.00 for adults, 7.00 for smalls (under 12)

Autocrats: Sharane de Kondrak - kitchen, feast, site
Aryana Silknfyre - court, tournament, protocol
Kafyre bint Assad - ticketing, transportation & housing
(contact info omitted)

PLEASE contact Kafyre as soon as you know you will be attending to inform her of your housing and transportation needs: length of visit, arrival & departure dates (and times if known), the number and names of those in your part if traveling together (and whether or not you wish to be housed together), WHETHER OR NOT YOU HAVE ARRANGED LODGINGFOR YOURSELF, any allergies, or medical conditions that would affect your lodging assignment (cigarette smoke, dog or cat fur, ...)

Tentative Schedule

(schedule omitted)


dress banners
quilt square featuring beasties: contact Annora of Shadowood for precut square & details
headgear: authentic, best lord's and best lady's
DRAW Nigh: any size or medium
soaps and other things for the bath: soaps, bath crystals, bath oils, bath potpourries ...
table decoration for feast
snowflakes in any mode: 2-dimensional, 2-12" diameter, entries NOT to be returned, to be attached to the Lady of the Snows personal banner, sable field
cheesecakes (can we beat our old record of 31?)
cooking in spirit: quick breads and sweet breads
authentic cookery: sublety. themed either OERTHA or WINTER. minimum 50% edible
mead: true mead, metheglin (herbed/spiced), melomel (fruit based). 16 oz. plus recipe
best lord and best lady at "the perfectly circular pavane"
bardic: new original song celebrating Oertha

From The Page (March, 1985):

Queen of the Far North

Cold Snows, Warm Smiles
or, Oertha's First Coronet*

This is a genuine, unsolicited endorsement. Oertha is wonderful. Everyone should visit. We headed off to the site in the gray light after sunrise, about 10am. The Coronet lists were held outside in the snow. The spectators had the choice of watching from inside where it was nice and warm, or freezing their toes off in the snow. I did a bit of both. It's an odd thing about fighting in the snow; when a fighter falls down you have to ask him if he's dead or just slipped. You know how helpless a turtle on his back is, well, it's worse in the snow. Lady Alicianne, the only lady to fight at Coronet, resembles a turtle when she's in armor. Lord Alaren (I hope I spelled that right) took a good stab at the Muckin' Great Clubbe. He knew that he had no chance against Sir Kylson, especially since Alaren was fighting single sword. So he charged Kylson, broadsword flailing, and yelled "Please don't hurt me!" The marshals put kitty litter on the snow, to reduce the dread ice worm plague ... Catbox North. They grow tall trees up there in the north; both of the finalists, Sir Brendan and Sir Kylson, are over six feet. As you know, during the finals, the ladies of the two finalists usually sit with the Queen or Princess in a place of honor. Oertha is a bit different. Lady Anne, Mistress Aryanna, and I huddled under a cloak as our toes froze. Oh, by the way, Sir Kylson Skyfyre won for Anne of Bradford.

Due to a string of bad luck, His Majesty did not arrive until the fighting was over and had to leave early Sunday morning. When His Majesty did arrive, he was presented with a cloved pineapple. There was lots of dancing after the fighting. Oerthans do fun dances, but they pavane funny. It's a combination of stepping over snow drifts and strutting. They do a dance called Stripping the Willow, which strongly resembles the Masochism Tango. They are past masters at killer Hole-in-the-Wall, but they just found out about attack Montarde.

The food at the feast was delicious. There were seafood turnovers, quiches, carrots, chicken, pork, rice and lots of other yummy stuff. Viscount Geoffrey let a small piece of bread accidentally slip out of his hand and ail across the room toward His Majesty. He missed and the bread hit me right on the top of my head. I called for my guard. As soon as they stopped laughing, they brought Geoffrey before me.

Our seneschal is very well trained. Whenever I would throw bread at him thereafter, he would say, "Thank you, Your Majesty, may I have another?" I accommodated him until I ran out of bread. The Barony of Earngyld presented an amusing puppet show. The cast and author all received the Golden Mousie Award for cattiness -- lots of well-meant zingers.

After the feast and court and cleanup, there was an excellent bardic circle. His Majesty wasn't paying attention, but the first song was "Tiny Bubbles." The selection ran from the silly to the serious. A lady from Winter's Gate sang "It Snows a Lot", with kazoo acompaniment, to the tune of Camelot. Lady Anne of Bradford sang the beautiful song she wrote to inspire her champion, Sir Kylson. It was so good, it worked. Adam Elfchaser read some of his wonderful poems, and a group of people expounded on the meaning of the letters of the alphabet. After they got to 'Z', His Majesty reminded them that 'B' is for Banishment and 'A' is for Atenveldt. 'P' is for Paranoia.

Because of His Majesty's sudden departure Sunday, the heralds had to do a bit of rewrite on the ceremony so I could do it myself. After a bit of confusion and uncertainty, the deed was done, and Oertha became an official Principality. It was a very nice ceremony and the coronets are great. The band is brass, with two silver baying wolves in front with a copper compass star between them. When the Principality officers came up to swear fealty, each of them brought a symbol of his office. The great seal of Oertha is real cute. It's white and fuzzy with big dark eyes and a cute little nose.

After the Investiture there was more dancing and socializing. I think there may have been some fighting too, but it was cold so I didn't go outside. At the final court, the Lord and Lady Guardian were Invested. As is the wont of final courts, gifts were given and thanks were said. From what I could tell, everyone went away pleased with a weekend well spent.

I would like to thank the autocrats, Mistresses Sharane, Aryana, and Kafyre; the pages who served myself and His Majesty so well, Aldwin Longwalker, Jonathan of Starfyre, and Myrddin Brandeall; also, for making it a pleasant visit, I thank Master Hirsch von Henford, Sir Eric Bearsbane, Adam Elfchaser, Sir Brendan Shimmeringstar, Mistress Elaine of Rainbow's End, Wolf Federweiss and Rhea Louveciennes; for all their help Sir Geoffrey of Griffenhold, Mistress Eilis O'Boirne, and Sir William the Lucky; and last but not least, for their hospitality and much more, Prince Kylson Skyfyre and Princess Ane of Bradford.


* You know us Westermarkers, we always give two titles to everything.

(This chronicle was written by Grün der Spitzenklöppler (now known as Juana Isabella de Montoya y Ramirez), who was Queen at the time)

(The following was published on the page of the same issue of The Page as the chronicle above ...)

An Oerthan Primer

being a catalogue of sage bits of knowledge presented
for the edification of the First Prince and Princess of Oertha

by Antadina du Nordlac (now known as Berengaria de Montfort of Carcassonne)
with a great debt to Payne of Woderising;
and thanks to Danpira Snowsong, Wolf Federweiss, and Rhea Louveciennes.

Ais for aardvark, the official beast of Oertha. Some say it's the wolf; but we've never seen a wolf at a tourney, except for Federweiss. We have seen an aardvark.
Bis for bunny. B is also for beheading. Best not say anything more.
Cis for cheesecake, the official Oerthan dessert. An important phrase to learn is, "Let them eat cheesecake."
Dis for decisions. Princes must make many important decisions. Important decisions take many hours of deliberation. Very important decisions take many weeks of deliberation. Critical decisions can take months. Nice presents and gifts can speed up the decision making process.
Eis for Exchequer. Your Chancellor of the Exchequer watches your coffers. It is best to watch your Chancellor of the Exchequer while is watching your coffers, lest he decide Western Seas is the best place to do it.
Fis for feasts. Feasts are scrumptious. Princes get into feasts free. Feasts cut your grocery bills.
Gis for The Guardian. The Guardian is our wonderful newsletter. We should support The Guardian. Donations of money help; donations of supplies help; donations of chocolate and liquor help. Chroniclers work best when mildly inebriated; but give them the chocolate when they're sober, lest they leave fingerprints on the cover.
His for herald. All Princes have heralds. Heralds are indispensable. Heralds are your voice. Heralds organize your courts. Heralds fetch your beer. Heralds do all this for love and admiration. Heralds don't get paid.
Iis for "I'll take it under advisement." Practice saying this.
Jis for January and July. Coronet Tourneys are in January and July. Snow or Mosquitoes, take your pick.
Kis for King. Kings visit Oertha. Kings look impressive. Kings hug and kiss well. Kings dance, sing, and throw laundry out of windows. Kings are fun.
Lis for Laurel. Laurels are peers. Laurels are creative peers. Laurels will creatively illuminate scrolls for you. Laurels will creatively carve things for you. Laurels will creatively try to overthrow you. Laurels need to be watched.
Mis for Minstrels. Minstrels sing and play. Minstrels provide background music. Minstrels make up good propaganda songs. Minstrels should be treated well.
Nis for noble. Princes are nobles. Nobles are respected. Nobles get to sit at head table. Nobles go first in potluck lines. Being Noble is a good thing.
Ois for Oertha. Oertha is where we live. If you haven't got this figured out by now, perhaps we should leave these complicated matters and review some basics.
Pis for . . . Principality. Oertha is a mighty Principality. Oertha is the cultural jewel of the West. We are happy to be able to present the fruits of our labors unto the Crown of the West (and it isn't my fault if one of those fruits turned out to be a pineapple).
Qby special request of Her Majesty Grün, is for Queen.
Ris for regalia. Princes get to wear regalia. The artisans make regalia for you, and take great pride in their work. If you lose the regalia, the artisans will hurt you. R is also for revolt.
Sis for sheep. S is for Steingrim. S is for St. Boniface. S is for students. S is for Story. It's a long, long story.
Tis for taxes. Taxes support the principality. Taxes pay for tourneys. Taxes pay for revels. Taxes make your car payments. Taxes should be raised often.
Uis for ulcers. Milk and Maalox are good for these.
Vis for Viscount and Viscountess. When you're through being Prince and Princess, they'll make you Viscount and Viscountess. The royal peerage adventure is just beginning!
Wis for War. Princes lead their troops from the rear. Knights protect the Prince. Unbelts hold the shield wall. Squires go up front so they can see better.
Xis for Xerox. Without the great god Xerox, the Known World would collapse; There would be no Chronicle, no Gatekeeper, no Guardian. All Princes need a Xerox. You might have to raise taxes.
Yis for yogurt. Oertha has much more culture than yogurt.
Zis for Zanzibar. Zanzibar is a land far, far away. People who disagree with your policies should be made ambassador to Zanzibar.

See photos of this event

Kylson Skyfyre
Azure, a unicorn rampant argent,
crined Or, on a chief arched Or
three snowflakes azure.
Anne of Bradford
Azure, chapé, a chicken martletted
close to sinister Or.
Arms by Khevron Oktavii Tikhikovich Vorotnikov


"As this was the first Coronet Tournament and Investiture of a brand new Principality, the King and Queen came to visit (Radnor and Grün). In addition, Mistress Eilis O'Boirne and Sir Geoffrey Griffenhold, who was Kingdom Seneschal at the time came up for this event.

"The victor in the tournament was Kylson Skyfyre, who fought for his lady Anne of Bradford, making them the first Prince and Princess of Oertha. (They weren't invested until Sunday ...)

"After the tournament, a feast was held, and entertainment was provided during the feast by Sir Geoffrey, who, while throwing bread at the King, missed, and hit the Queen. Her Majesty called forward the members of Her guard present, who held Geoffrey to keep him from escaping, while She threw bread at him at Her leisure.

"A puppet show was performed, which was a lot of fun. The gist of the play was literally the servers laying out a feast at the Oerthan Coronet Tournament 10 years after the first Coronet (this event). There was a huge discussion of who got to sit where, and among other things (I had been Laureled a couple of years earlier), there was a mention of "Oh, and there's poor Lord Hirsch, who had his Laurel revoked for screwing up the first Investiture court!". Well, this had me a bit on edge, as the Investiture was the next day ... We'll come back to this. Other things that were funny were just the fact that many of the really active peers were now "Dukes" ... and so on. A mention that "Poor Geoffrey [of Griffenhold, then Kingdom Seneschal] - he came to Oertha and swore he wouldn't leave until the politics had mellowed out [or words to that effect], and he's still here!" ... that got a huge laugh from everyone.

"At evening court, the victors of the tournament (Kylson and Anne) were seated in court, and someone presented them with a pair of large wolf-shaped cookies (with a wolf on the Oerthan arms, it was fitting). I was standing court as Herald, with Eilis backing me up. We'd had some interesting business earlier, with my being surprised with a QOG, as I was herald ... (sneaky Royalty, yes!). Then the cookies were presented. Kylson, being the gentlemen, offered first choice to Their Majesties. One of the tails had broken off, so Queen Grün took the tail. I turned to her sotto voce, and said "Piece of tail, Your Majesty?" to which she replied without batting an eye, "Statement or offer?". I turned beet red, and shut up fast. I was quite embarassed. But it was funny ... I don't know how many people heard that exchange, as we were being quiet.

"Saturday evening ended with a bardic circle. The bardic was a lot of fun, and included "An Oerthan Primer" by Antadina du Nordlac (now Berengaria de Montfort of Carcassone) and some others who's names escape me. Sir Geoffrey got blamed for a pineapple joke that wasn't his fault (he spent most of Radnor's reign picking on His Majesty's Hawaiian background) ... see above for the text of the primer.

"Saturday evening, upon returning to His Majesty's host, a message or two was left for Him by his girlfriend (so you don't get the wrong idea, he fought for Grün with permission of his lady, who's membership was not paid at the time, and was a friend) -- she'd had a car accident and was shaken up (but okay). His Majesty left on the next flight he could get to take care of her. (It is my understanding that shortly after getting back, he proposed to her ... they are still happily married after all these years, I am glad to say ...)

"This left the heralds in a bit of a quandry -- we (Mistress Eilis and myself -- Hirsch) stayed up until ungodly hours re-writing the Investiture ceremony so that Her Majesty could do the whole thing by herself.

"The Investiture of Kylson and Anne happened on Sunday. At 12th Night a few weeks earlier, His Majesty had been presented with a lot of Hawaiian "stuff", amongst which was a wooden pineapple. Since His Majesty was not present, the Throne He would normally have sat upon had the Crown, with the wooden pineapple in it, to represent His Majesty. Silly? Of course, silly. I was proud of the fact that I did a great job of court. I didn't fumble over anything, I got the names right, I didn't embarass the Prince and Princess, right up until I closed court. Sitting in front of me was a lady who I had always admired (we were just friends, but I liked her), named (at the time) Kafyre, and we caught each other's eyes as I was closing court. I started to close the court of Kaf... at which point Kylson looked up at me, I turned beet red (again), and everyone in the room cracked up. They'd been waiting for an error because of the puppet show the night before ... and boy, it was a good one. After the laughter died down, I managed to close court properly, and we went on with the rest of the day." -- Hirsch von Henford

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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