Tuesday, 10 March 2020

Ana Yanka, Order of the Crucible, 2020

So we Kaylah, Queen by Right of Arms of all the North and Trumbrand, King of all the North, Grand Princess and Prince Septentrian, and Skrael, and of Rising Waters, and Ramshavenite, and Ben Dunfirthian, and of all the shires; do address ourselves to Lady Ana Yanka. We, T’sarina and T’sar, on all days with our subjects overseen what they have written and any items they make and any scribal work they do and who does well. And that subject we note and we reward.

All lands, cities and persons honour and glorify those who bear the works of honour wrought by such masterful scribes. Thus let us, through our own strength, humbly praise this diligent servant who in turn glorifies others with brush and pen. And through such praise, make it known that we did not reign in a poor and unknown land, but in Ealdormere, which is known and celebrated by all to the ends of the earth.

Because she does not destroy Our laws, but confirms them, does not diminish works, but extends them, and does not undo but strengthens, she has proven herself worthy of reward. And because the likes of her are rarely found in all the northern lands, or in the east, or in the west, We, by the rights granted to Us by the laws and traditions of Ealdormere, say that she shall be made a companion of the steadfast and glorious Order of the Crucible. Behold that We grant unto her the right to bear the badge: Gules, a mullet of seven points voided and interlaced and a double tressure Or, and proclaim to all that on the 29th day of February, AS LIV, she is invested with the honour that accompany such promotion.

Arise honored Crucible and serve the lands you love. Stand tall with the honor that has been granted you. Rejoice and be of good cheer.

Wording by THL Dietrich von Sachsen. Based off of the Eulogy to Kagan Vlaimir by Vladimir the Great; and 15th century royal letters.

Saturday, 22 February 2020

Thord Lotharson, Award of the Maiden's Heart

There once was a fighter named Thord,
Who fought with a big axe and sword.
He’d fight all the day
In every which way
So he joined the barbarian horde.

In the Shire did Thord make his home,
But not wanting to be all alone,
When newcomers approached,
In combat he coached,
A made his techniques then their own.

Thus did new fighters he train,
To fight well upon Trino’s plain,
He’d marshal the practice
And Winter War’s fracas,
And we call this a hobby – how insane!

So Kaylah, the Queen of the Land,
Said to Thord as did gallant Trumbrand –
For the fighting art
Award We Maiden’s Heart
Given now from own seal and hand.

Done this day, the 28th of September, Anno Societatis LIV.

Wording by Dietrich von Sachsen.

Neala of Trinovantia Nova, Award of the Maiden's Heart

I invoke the land of Trinovantia Nova,
Much coursed by the gentle seas.
A beloved land is yon land in the west.
So have Kaylah and Trumbrand invoked for her.
Beloved kinswoman is Neala,
Of the storied blood of Ragnaill.
She who is beloved of the land
And who loves in turn.
Waters furrows with heartfelt tears,
And turns fallow land to rich fields,
Through toil and labours,
With love and dedication.
Like a lofty ship is the land of Trinovantia Nova
And Neala, a skilled pilot
Who guides with hand and heart.
For us, the lays of time are preserved
To perform, most noble people;
Woven in the length of the cloak of her being
Is Neala of the Maiden’s Heart.
So do we speak on the feast of St. Machan.
I invoke the land of Trinovantia.

Words by TH Lord Dietrich von Sachsen, inspired by Amergin's Invocation of Ireland.

John of Maggie, Award of the Wolf's Cub

It came to pass in the faire realm of Ealdormere that there lived a young boy by the name of John, son of Maggie. John aspired to become a warrior and to win renown from his Queen and King.

To that end did he consult with his mother and with the wise and noble of the realm. They advised to seek out the great White Wolf of Ealdormere, whom legends said guarded the horn of Suttungr, which gave any who supped from it vast wisdom. Thus did John set out on his quest to find the wolf.

After many moons of searching, John came across the mighty creature amidst a grove of tall pine trees. The beast stood taller than a warhorse, and his fur was as white as the snow, but John was not afeared. He approached the wolf and, with a bow, said unto him:

“Oh great wolf of the north: I wish to be a great warrior.”

The mighty wolf responded: “To be a great warrior, one must first have great courage.”

John thought a moment and then spake thus: “I have challenged warriors twice my stature in both height and prowess. Is this courage enough?”

The great wolf nodded, for he knew it to be so. “To grow as a fighter, one must have dedication to the art of battle.”

John paused in thought, and then responded: “I have sought the advice of noble knights and peers, and have practiced at every opportunity. Is this dedication enough?”

The great wolf nodded, for he knew it to be so. “Dedication and courage are but the start. A great warrior must know honour.”

John bowed before the wolf and spake thus: “I have always sought to win my battles with honour, or not at all.”

The wolf nodded, for he knew it to be so. “So I have heard from many lips. You have courage, dedication, and honour, young John. Do you seek wisdom?” John nodded, and the white wolf did give him the horn of Suttungr, which John supped from. Yet John did not feel any different, and said as much to the noble wolf.

“The horn is but a horn, John; is by seeking the wisdom of those who have come before you that you gain wisdom in turn. Your courage, honour, dedication, and wisdom are well known to me, and to Ealdormere.”

Thus did John return to the court of Kaylah the Queen and Trumbrand the King, who, on the seventh day of December, AS 54, declared him worthy of the Award of the Wolf’s Cub, as befits one whose virtues are known to the wolves of the northlands.

Wording by Dietrich von Sachsen.

Rylyn Buchanan, Award of the Maiden's Heart

In the year of the incarnation of the first Laurel Kingdom quinquaginta quattuor, indication of the 7th day of the final month. I Kaylah, Queen of Ealdormere, with the assent of the King of Ealdormere Trumbrand, in the fourth month of my reign, recognized by noble counsel the labours of Rylyn Buchanan who sat in the seat of the Trillium Herald. Accordingly, it is in all parts of the land that she has served our College of Heralds and our thanes, hersir, bondsman, and thralls. For it is with quickness of wit and fullness of heart that she has turned her skill and hand to the art and science of heraldry. She has collected great sums to account for the expenses of the college, and has proved she can consult in any land, in great hall or in summer field. . Accordingly, it is in the western part of the land that I give her the Award of the Maiden’s Heart, and the right to bear the badge of the award aforenamed, “Quarterly azure and Or, a heart counterchanged.” This I will take care to uphold to all common and other people as long as men have freedom to hear my words. Confirmation of the decree set forth in the most frequented place Bryniau Tywynnog

Wording by Dietrich von Sachsen. Based of the 805 CE Charter of Cuthred, king of Kent, to Wulfred, archbishop.

AEthelbert of Whitstone Isle, Order of the Crucible

Rest your feet awhile, ye gentles good,
And hear the words of Roak Khan,
And those of Hyrokkin, Khan Begam.
The reputation of AEthelbert
Is not just a load of old cobblers.
Let us thus wax eloquently in his praise.
For word-fame lasts; this sole of diligence –
No cowmouth’d vagabond is he.
But his works speak with a most supple tongue
Which ensure he does not get off on the wrong foot.
Needles to say, and not to put too fine a point on it,
Such works deserve swift reward, hell-for-leather!
For as the ancients say: “If the shoe fits,
“Then a Crucible we make for skill and wits!”

Done this 18th Day of May, Anno Societatis LIV, as we sit our thrones at the great faire of Fruits of Our Labours, in our Canton of Bryniau Twynnog.

Wording by Dietrich von Sachsen.

Thursday, 12 December 2019

Arwyn of Leicester, Order of the Laurel, 2019


Let Greatness of Glory be his Principality, and Splendor, and Greatness of Retinue, and Valour and Boldness, and Courage, and Favour with the Gryphon, the bestower of Victory, to the people of Avacal. So long as flowers spread their perfume and daylight shines, with Sincere Love and Ancient Friendship, do We, Ivar the Black and Asney Grimolfrsdottir, who lean upon the Couch of Command in Our Kingdom of the Gryphon, highly advanced in Dominion, Noble in Courage and Justice, send praise.

As the maxim says “An equitable Ruler is the personification of Good in the World[1]”, and so do We find Our Princely minds wishing to make known what cannot remain hidden, being the esteem in which we hold Our loyal subject Arwyn of Leicester also known as Amira al- 'Aliyya. This Arwyn is a woman of Great Worth, beloved by her family and by our cousin the Shah, who considers her to be a fidalgo[2] of high rank. As she has great knowledge of saffron, golpar, shevid[3] and all the spices, and has been governing the accounts of her household, and made her knowledge available to all, do We elevate her in rank, advance her in prestige, and make her a member of Our most noble Order of the Laurel. With her do We then make the following contract:

1st We make her a woman of the pen[4] and grant her the right and title to sit in the royal palace[5] and name her moqarrab ab-hazrat sharbat-khana[6], over-seer of spices and desserts to Our court.

2nd It is granted that she shall pay no manner of Customes or tolles any kind of waye when buying or selling the commodity of spice.

3rd Free libertie, safe conduct and licence to come or sende her factors in trade throughout Our countrey, and to act as our Embassador and agent in the buying and selling of spice with Our cousins in other countreys.

4th That her Camel men, Carauans and Shipps will have safe harbour on Our roads, coasts and rivers, and that any who infringe upon them shall be brought to Us for judgement.

We expect all to fulfill these obligations[7] and be bound by Our stipulations, except a stipulation that makes unlawful what is lawful[8]. Fulfil this, Our agreement, for an agreement is obligatory.[9]

This is the intention granted by Ivar and Asney, who reside on the Couch of Justice and Splendidness , may Their dynasty last till the end of the world, and Their reign be prolonged till the consummation of ages! Done at the celebration of Yule, in the Barony of Borealis, on the 16th day of Azar[10] in the yeare 1398, reckoned in the Society as the 7th Day of December in the yeare 54.

Wording by Maister Colyne Stewart of Ealdormere, based upon contracts between: ‘Abd al-‘Ali Khan, ruler of Gilan and England (14 April 1563); Shah Tahmasp and England (29 June 1566);  Shah ‘Abbas I and King James I of England (1615; modified in July 1697); the Treaty of Peace and the Frontiers (17 May 1639); and a letter from Shah Sulayman to Charles II (1677-78).

Dandamayev, Muhammad A. et al. “Contracts”. Encyclopædia Iranica, online edition http://www.iranicaonline.org/articles/contracts-legally-enforceable-undertakings-between-two-or-more-consenting-parties accessed September 29, 2019

Ferrer, José Cutillas, “SPAIN: RELATIONS WITH PERSIA IN THE 16TH AND 17TH CENTURIES,” Encyclopædia Iranica, online edition, 2018, available at http://www.iranicaonline.org/articles/spain-relations-persia-16-17-century September 29, 2019

Ferrier, R. W. “The Terms and Conditions under which English Trade Was Transacted with Ṣafavid Persia”. Bulletin of the School of Oriental and African Studies, University of London
Vol. 49, No. 1, In Honour of Ann K. S. Lambton (1986), pp. 48-66 (23 pages)
https://www.jstor.org/stable/617668 accessed  September 30 2019

Hanway, Jonas. An Historical Account of the British Trade Over the Caspian Sea: With a Journal of Travels from London Through Russia Into Persia; and Back Through Russia, Germany and Holland. To which are Added, the Revolutions of Persia During the Present Century, with the Particular History of the Great Usurper Nadir Kouli in four volumes. Volume one. London: 1753.

 “Iran, 1400–1600 A.D.” In Heilbrunn Timeline of Art History. New York: The Metropolitan Museum of Art, 2000–. http://www.metmuseum.org/toah/ht/?period=08&region=wai (October 2002)  accessed September 29, 2019

Marcinkowski, M. Ismail. “Dastural-Moluk”, Encyclopedia Iranica. http://www.iranicaonline.org/articles/dastur-al-moluk Accessed October 1, 2019

ibid. “Tadherat al-Moluk”, Encyclopedia Iranica. http://www.iranicaonline.org/articles/tadkerat-al-moluk Accessed September 30, 2019

Matthee,  Rudolph P. The Politics of Trade in Safavid Iran: Silk for Silver, 1600-1730.
Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1999. https://books.google.ca/books?id=5U0yECMV--wC accessed September 29, 2019

Minorsky, V. Tadhkirat Al-Muluk: A Manual of  Safavid Administration  (circa 1137/1725). Cambridge: W. Heffer & Sons LTD. 1943. Online at https://archive.org/stream/in.ernet.dli.2015.227105/2015.227105.Tadhkirt-Al-muluk_djvu.txt Accessed September 30, 2019

Mustafa, Grand Vizier.  “Treaty of Peace and Frontiers: The Ottoman Empire and Persia (17 May 1639)”. Pars Times: Greater Iran and Beyond, http://www.parstimes.com/history/iran_ottoman.html  Accessed October 1, 2019

Ranjbar, M.A. and Sehhat Manesh, R., 2016. “New Routes to Iran’s International Trade in the Safavid Era”. Ancient Asia, 7, p.8. DOI: http://doi.org/10.5334/aa.124 accessed September 30, 2019

Savory, Roger M. “COURTS AND COURTIERS vi. In the Safavid period”
Encyclopedia Iranica. http://www.iranicaonline.org/articles/courts-and-courtiers-vi
accessed September 29, 2019

Shafaat, Ahmad, Dr. “Islamic Rules Governing Financial Dealings, “1988.  Islamic Perspectives, http://www.islamicperspectives.com/FinancialDealings.htm Accessed October 1, 2019

With Thanks To
Carroll-Clark, Susan. Private correspondence, Facebook Messenger, September 24 through October 1, 2019.

Leo-Roca, Carlos. SOAS Library, University of London.

[1] The original maxim is “An equitable Sultan is the shadow of God on earth”. (Mustafa.)
[2] Someone who was of a high rank could be known as a fidalgo. (Savory.)
[3] Spices native to Persia.
[4] The Safavid administration was split between the “men of the sword” and the “men of the pen”. (Savory.)
[5] It was a great honour to be allowed to sit in the Shah’s court. (Savory.)
[6] A moqarrab ab-hazrat was a manager in charge of a royal workshop responsible for expenditures. Moqarrab meant “confidant” and “hazrat” is an honorific. The sharbat-khana was the workshop that included spices, sugar and tobacco. (Savery. Minorsky. Marcinkowski.)
[7] The koranic verse 5:1 stipulates that agreements must be adhered to. (Dandemayay.)
[8] This is attributed to the Prophet Muhammad. (Dandemayay.)
[9] Several koranic verses teach that contracts must be honoured, including "O Believers: Honor your contracts" (5:1,) as well as "And fulfill every commitment. Surely every commitment will be asked about (on the day of judgment)" (17:34). (Mustafa. Shafaat.)
[10] Azar is the ninth month of the official calendar of Iran. It begins in November, ending in December, and lasts thirty days.