PI Web Edition -- Saturday, August 20, 2005

"They met on the Field of Honour"

By DonalBane of the Blakmers

Battlefield Correspondent, Pennsic Independent

Final Tally:

Midrealm Dragons 26,

East Tygers 1

The Grand Armies of the Midrealm and the East met for the final time Friday under overcast skies for The Field of Honour. The grand spectacle of the field battle brought out loads of spectators to cheer on their respective kingdoms.

Once again, the East lined its forces up on the western side of the battlefield determined to fight to the last man. House Bloodguard, Rome, the Tuchux, and the Northern Army held the north side of the field, while the Southern Army, Black Talon, the Bog Alliance and Ironlance held the center. The western allied kingdoms deployed themselves to the south.

The Dragon's armies lined up for the last time this war on the east side of the battlefield. Forces from AEthelmearc, Calontir, Ealdormere, Northshield and Outlands held the north, while the bulk of the Midrealm army deployed itself to the center. Forces from Atlantia, the Great Dark Horde and Trimaris held the south of the battlefield.

When the cannon sounded for the first fight, more than 1,000 gentles charged proudly into each other. The bulk of the East's forces held their own initially in the north and center, but the combined forces of Trimaris and Atlantia proved to be too much for the outnumbered fighter from the western kingdoms. The right side of the East line was flanked and the Atlantian forces began to charge north. Slowly, the whole of the outnumbered East line began to crumble until the remaining Tyger forces were trapped the northwest corner of the battlefield and wore down.

The second fight took a similar path, although the East's forces seemed to be more compact and organized in this fight. The Tyger held back some units in attempt to countercharge the surging Dragon armies. Unfortunately for the East, the Midrealm's surge could only be delayed and the battle once again collapsed until the Tuchux found themselves fighting against most of the Known World in the northwest corner of the battlefield.

The third fight allowed for combat archery and siege weapons, although many fewer siege weapons were used than the previous day on the causeway. The fight in the north followed the same path as the first two fights, but the fight to the south saw a reversal of fortunes. A tightly bunched group of the East's western allies were able to roll over forces from Trimaris in the initial charge. This same force then turned back and decimated the remains of the Atlanitan army in the south. Having cleared the southern battlefield, the western allies turned their attentions to the brawl to the north. They were greeted by a host of Midrealmers, anchored by the Darkyard Legion and House Darkmoon. It became a dark time for the outnumbered westerners as they were beaten in the final grand melee of the war.

Saturday's Big Battle: The flight of the dragons through the gates!

Seriously, HOOBAH, VIVAT, WASSAIL and HUZZAH to all the warriors and warrior watchers of the great Pennsic War. Hope to see you in a years' time for Pennsic XXXV.

Populace Archery Shoot Results (total for all three points):

Midrealm: 2,401

East: 1,261

All three populace archery points went to the Middle.

Rapier Woods Battle Results:

The Middle Kingdom took all five banners and so won the war point.

Pennsic Historically Part 8: Too Long, Too Far From Home

By Sir Guillaume de la Belgique

At the end of the Middle Ages, the great thinkers of Western society began an outward expansion to uncover new lands and resources for the thriving sense of industry and liberty that were blooming in that time. This is a really high-brow way of saying that by the beginning of the 17th century, anyone with half a brain was trying to get the heck out of Europe. They sailed south and west, and they traveled east by caravan, to discover new cultures, new people and new lands - most of which were getting along just fine by themselves and were completely unaware that they were in need of 'discovery.'

In a similar vein, this morning begins an outward migration of a population that has happily called Pennsic home for the past week or two. Like those European explorers such as Columbus, Magellan, the Navigator formerly known as Prince Henry, De Soto, Mitsubishi, and Carl Sagan, as we all begin to break camp, we look to the road ahead with anticipation and uncertainty. Who knows what the coming year will bring?

The last day of Pennsic is always a bittersweet moment for me. I love all of my friends here (new and old) very much, but there are many friends at home, in Caid and in Calafia, who I've been missing for the past two weeks. Like an explorer turning for home, I look forward to bringing a little bit of this year's war back to my 'everyday' life with me - the only difference being that I'm returning home carrying T-shirts and new basket hilts, rather than gold, spices and tobacco.

The bubble of our magic Pennsic world cannot last forever. The battles are now fought, the shopping is shopped and the parties are all reveled out. We are too long, too far from home, and it is time to let the winds carry us away from Pennsic for another year. Fortunately smiles, laughter and friendship are the resources we take away from this land, and those cargoes can sustain us for the coming year, until it's time to begin another year of Pennsic history.

Wherever your journeys take you, you can always enjoy more of Guillaume's humorous stories about life in the SCA and his reflections on the concepts of chivalry, honor and ethics at his websites:




Women work the wires at AEthelmearc tourney

By Peregrine Fairchylde

Staff Writer, Pennsic Independent

The Kingdom of AEthelmearc welcomed 20 ladies from around the known world to its second Ladies' Rapier Tournament on Friday, and everyone took away a prize thanks to the "treasure chest" format where each entrant provided a gift for the marshal's table.

After running through four pools of five fighters each, the top finisher from each pool - Warder Brighid MacCumhal of the Middle Kingdom, Lady Arnaz from Trimaris, Tamara of the Light from Ealdormere and Carol Roche from the East - fought a single-elimination bracket to determine the overall winner.

In the finals, Lady Arnaz planted a thrust onto the mask of Warder Brighid to emerge victorious and take, among other prizes, a scroll made by Do–a Sasha Grey of AEthelmearc, one of the organizers of the event, and a gift certificate to Gipsy Peddler. Warder Brighid was offered a bottle of Scotch to help her console herself, and she also took home a tablet-woven belt.

Lady Arnaz said she hopes to bring the same enthusiasm for fencing to the ladies in her home kingdom.

"I'm trying to get the ladies in our kingdom to fight, and hope we can do this at Gulf Wars," she announced.

Warder Brighid noted that she skipped the heavy weapons battle to fight in the ladies' tourney, and also would like to see the Midrealm reach the point one day where the East Kingdom is now, with close to half of its rapier champions being women. Warder Brighid was the sole lady on the Midrealm's team.

Tamara of the Light, an Ealdormearean fencer, said she was extremely pleased to have made the final four.

"This is my first tournament I've actually placed in," said Tamara, who's been fighting for about three years. "It was fun. It was nice to fight gentle ladies who take their shots. [There was] a nice skill level and no thuggery."

Lady Illadore de Bedegrayne, the other organizer of the tournament, said she was very pleased to have exceeded last year's turnout of 14 participants.

"We started this because we thought it would be fun," said Lady Illadore.

"In the past couple of years at Pennsic we've seen lots more women fencing," added Do–a Sasha.

The activity is still growing, and Lady Illadore noted that in their kingdom about 30 percent of all rapier fighters are women. They hoped that through tourneys like this one and another held at Estrella War for the past 10 years that more ladies will be encouraged to try out rapier fighting.

"I would have to say the rapier community is very accepting of everyone and we are delighted to have as many strong women on the field," said Lady Illadore.