An Tir Internal Letter of Intent

Free to all persons willing to comment on a regular basis

Commentary due on this letter by September 12th 1999

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July 22, 1999 A.S. XXXIV

Greetings unto the An Tir College of Heralds from Maryn Lion's Blood!

OOOPS! Mistake in last letter's info! Well, two, actually…(I know, you snarky guys… big surprise, right?). The first Sunday is not the 8th, which is when I meant for the meeting. So since that was wrong anyway, we have made another change: the August Lion's Blood meeting will be on the 7th, a Saturday; same time and place, though -- 12:00 noon at Dame Zenobia's house. Both Lady Rafaella and I will be there. Directions are:

Take Interstate five, north or south to exit 289 in Oregon (Tualatin/Sherwood.).

Go West at the end of the offramp (a left from the northbound 5, a right from the southbound 5.) This puts you on Nyberg Rd.

You will soon reach a "y" intersection. Stay right (on Nyberg.)

Make a left at the next light (Martinazzi.)

Go through a few lights, then make a right at the 2nd stop sign (Avery).

The house is 8675 SW Avery St., a bit more than a block up, on your right. Phone # (503) 692-0177.

Also, a batch of submissions from April turned up while unpacking; I feel really bad about these, guys, but all I could do was get them onto this letter. Sorry, bad herald, no biscuits again ever!

Remember that Lady Rafaella will be the New Lion's Blood Herald; send her all submissions after August 1st, at:

Lion's Blood Herald

Lady Rafaella d'Allemtejo

c/o F. Valentine

9975 SW Walnut St. #2

Tigard, OR 97223

September's meeting will tentatively be held in Lion's Gate on the 12th.

Again, apologies to commenters for not listing them individually. However, they all have my thanks, as do Isa Estreys, Michael Grey and Wolf, for filing and envelope stuffing. Here are the results of the June Lion's Blood meeting; please note that in many cases there has been 'blazon fu' worked, even if not remarked:

Old Submissions

The following have been sent to Laurel:

1. Alexander Petrovich. New Name and Device

Vert, a bear rampant maintaining a sword and on a chief Or a quill fesswise nib to dexter vert

We have blazoned the orientation of the feather explicitly, as there appears to be some confusion over the default orientation of a quill when fesswise.

2. False Isle, Shire of. New Branch Device.

Per chevron argent goutty de poix and vert, in base a mermaid tergiant head to dexter with sinister hand open and raised Or, crined and tailed maintaining in the dexter hand an axe all within a laurel wreath argent

They have included a petition signed by six officers and eleven other members of the populace. The blazon on the petition has been corrected on the forms to the version that you see above (well, with small changes by the CoH of An Tir), but the emblazon is the same.

We had some concerns about the position of the mermaid; sent to us as 'tergiant regardant' we have changed the blazon to better reflect the slightly unusual posture. However, since a mermaid is one of the few creatures in heraldry that is commonly drawn in a somewhat ć-ish view from the front, it seemed likely to be no more than a 'weirdness' if she was ever so slightly ć-ish from the back.

3. GueniËvre de Lyons. New Name.

We added a citation and sent it up: <de Lyons> can be found in Reaney and Wilson, sub 'Lyon', as 'Henry de Lyons' in 1296.

4. Johannes Vagus. New Name.

The name is intended to be Latin for 'John the Wanderer'. We suspect that 'wanderer' had a much less romantic implication than the client might envision, but if he is content, well then….

5. John Folcwulf. New Name and Device.

Per pale sable and gules two wolves combatant argent, a chief embattled erminois

We are inclined to think that this is a perfectly acceptable name, if not as authentic as the submitter might hope.

7. Olivia Whytrose. New Name and Device.

Per saltire gules and sable, a rose within an orle argent

The An Tir CoH added that <Olivia> was popularized by Shakespeare, and is also found on page 286 of de Felice's 'Dizionario dei nomi italiani', sub 'Olivo"; and we, too, prefer 'Whytrose' to 'of the white rose', and given the 'Rederose' citation in particular think it should be fine. We are instructing this submitter to fatten up the orle.

8. Tangwystyl verch Riuallaun Ogwr. New Name and Device.

Azure, a dragon rampant, on a point pointed Or a rose azure

Documentation as you saw it on the Internal Letter.

9. Theresia von Villach. New Device.

Per bend sinister azure and vert, a bend sinister dancetty argent between a sun in splendor and an acorn inverted Or

Her name was registered in November 1997. Her previous submission - the same as this one - was returned in Kingdom for redrawing, since the computer-selection of azure was indistinguishable from purpure. This blue is clearly no other colour than blue.

The following have been returned for further work:

Elisabeth of Evergreen Shores Name and Device New

Per fess wavy azure and Or in chief five gouttes argent, in base an annulet vert (Glymm Mere)

Elisabeth Greenshore is a probable construction for medieval England, based on the combination of 'Green + geographical feature'; a less probable construction might be Elisabeth Evergreen, meaning a place where boars were set out on the village green to do whatever they do, paralleling the town name 'Everton', where boars were farmed. But unhappily, the word 'evergreen' as a word is not recorded in English until 1555, and it is very probable that someone living that late in period would have an inherited surname instead of a nickname with a brand-new word in it.

GueniËvre de Lyons Device New


Quarterly wavy purpure and argent, in bend a decrescent and an increscent and in bend sinister two Donnelly knots counterchanged

As of the February 1997 Laurel meeting, the Donnelly knot is no longer accepted for registration in SCA heraldry (LoAR Sept. 1996, pp9, 11). Also, there is a problem with the very-nearly appearance of marshalling in this device. The Rfs XI3 state:

We do have rulings that say that the complex line of the field (as per clause a) can make acceptable things that otherwise would look like marshalling (as per clause b). However, the College believes that that only applies when there's only one 'clause b' problem, not two (not identical charges and throughout charges). I am including this discussion, by the way, to aid in the redesign of this device using something other than Donnelly knots throughout.

Johannes Vagus Name and Device New

Gyronny of sixteen argent and sable a salamander tergiant gules enflamed Or (Wealdsmere)

This is being returned for a redraw. The LoAR of 10/92 upholds the LoAR of 3/83 in stating that "In Society Heraldry, while fields may be gyronny of as many as 12, charges may be gyronny of no more than 8". This implies that gyronny of 16 is gyronny of too many. Also, the flames as drawn constitute 'fimbriated of flame'; period enflaming showed little tongues of flame coming off of the charge, not surrounding it, and can be cause for return at Laurel.

I should mention that I personally thought the device was swell-looking, so I hope that in redrawing the essence doesn't change.

Johannes Vagus Badge New

Vert, a trefoil knot within a bordure rayonny argent (Wealdsmere)

This had to be returned for conflict. A triquetra and a trefoil knot are essentially the same charge, and so this badge conflicts with that of Morwyn Edain: Vert, a triquetra and a chief embattled argent. Okay, now you'll want to pay attention here, because too many of us are going, 'Huh? But that's one for losing the chief and one for adding the bordure, right? Or one for chief-to-bordure and one for embattled-to-rayonny?' Well, actually, no. This constitutes only one CD, for changing the type of peripheral charge, something like several changes to the field still only gets you one CD for the field.

New Submissions:

1. Adelheid von Katzenellenbogen Name and Device New

Gyronny erminois and pean (Madrone)

She will accept unspecified changes. Her documentation photocopies are of a book entitled Regensburger Rufnamen des 13. Und 14. Jahrhunderts by Volker Kohlheim, showing on page 367 the name <Adelheid>, dated to 951. Also included is a page discussing frequency of name occurrences for this name and its variations from 893 to 1378. From Historisch-geographisches W–rterbuch des deutschen Mittelalters by Dr. Hermann Oesterley is, on page 335, a list of spellings with dates for <Katzenellenbogen>; it is dated to that spelling from 1139. The citations are pretty clear (translating by the 'if-only-it-were-English' translation system), but she politely includes translations as well.

2. Adelheid von Katzenellenbogen Badge New

Gyronny Or and sable, an ermine spot counterchanged (Madrone)

Her name is submitted above. The colour emblazon is very bright…

3. Avacal, Principality of, the Order of the Griffin's Flame Order Name New


This submission is also signed by His Highness, Shamus van de Pontseele. They decline to accept major changes to the name. Included is a paragraph that states:

Griffin is a legendary monster depicted in period heraldry. Used spelling appearing most often in SCA armorial. Flame is in Basic English meaning fire. It can be noted that the name derives from the primary charge of the device of Avacal. A flame was chosen as a common theme appearing in matters pertaining to the Arts and Sciences. The award will be given for special achievement in the Arts and Sciences in Avacal.

This is pretty good. However, Order Names are often hard to know how to document. One of the things that a poor belabored herald can do for docs is to demonstrate, if possible, that Order Names in period were formed like the submission. For example, if your group wants to submit 'Order of the Sock', it can be a Good Thing™ to mention the 'Order of the Garter' (with a date) - both names formed from item of apparel. See?

4. Bear Mountain, Canton of Branch Name and Device New

Per pall inverted azure, argent and vert, in chief two laurel wreaths argent and azure (Bear Mountain)

Unspecified changes are acceptable to the group; a petition is included, signed by the Seneschal, the A&S officer and the Constable, as well as seven other members of the group. The meaning intended is "the mountain where we have seen bears", and a map that shows 'Bjornsberg' is included. I am certain that assistance in further documenting the name would be appreciated by the group.

5. Catriona Stiubhard Device Resubmission to Laurel

(Coeur du Val)

Per fess undly argent and sable a dolphin haurient in chief and haurient inverted in base both counterchanged

Her name was registered in April 1997. Her device was returned from Laurel in April 1998, with the following blazon and comment: Per pale embowed counterembowed argent and sable, two natural dolphins naiant in annulo counterchanged. This is being returned for a redraw. As drawn the embowing-counterembowing is barely noticeable. It needs to be far more pronounced.

6. DamhĚn Ű Ruaidh Name and Device New

Gules, a bailey, in chief four ermine spots Or, overall a lance palewise with tip of peace argent (Lion's Gate)

He declines to accept major changes to his name, and wishes to retain the meaning 'Devin, grandson of Roy'. He includes a letter from the Academy of St. Gabriel, who cite O'Corrain and Maguire for the name <DamhĚn>. 'Raudh' is the form the submitter found in Withycombe, but the Academy suggests <Ruaidh> as the more accurate form for Irish Gaelic. The Academy letter is signed by Effric neyn Kenyeoch vc Ralte, Tangwystl verch Morgant Glasvryn, Talan Gwynek, Zenobia Naphtali, Ivanor of Sighty Crag, Hartmann Rogge, and Arval D'Espas Nord. And as my son pointed out, my spellchecker hates me….

7. David of Moffat Badge New

(Glymm Mere)

(Fieldless) A demi-lion rampant erased gorged of a coronet azure maintaining an escutcheon gules

His name was registered in 1981. He includes an elegantly phrased letter, which I reproduce almost entirely here, partly in the interest of the teaching aspect of these Letters of Intent, partly because it could impact the arguments presented were I to attempt to compress the information.

"…This submission,…raises multiple issues which must be addressed.

The first issue is the presence of the coronet on a badge for a non-royal peer. In the May 1999 LoAR, p. 8, Laurel Sovereign issued the following decision:

This hereby overturns the ban on people of baronial rank using coronets in their arms. Henceforth, in addition to royal peers, court barons/esses may use coronets in their arms. Note: this does not include territorial barons/esses, since that is not a permanent rank. Just as a sitting king/queen/prince/princess cannot put a coronet in their arms until after they have attained the rank of count/ess or viscount/ess, since, while it is rare, there have been cases of royalty who have not completed their reign, neither can a territorial baron/ess, unless they are already a court baron/ess, use a coronet, since they have not attained a permanent baronial rank.

Therefore, as we said above, effective with this decision, and having discussed this with Laurel designate, court baron/ess may use a coronet in their arms, so long as it does not use the embattlements of county rank, or the strawberry leaves of ducal rank.

I was granted a court barony at the time I stepped down as Baron of Glymm Mere at Mayfaire in 1998. I, therefore, satisfy the criteria for use of a coronet in my armory.

The second issue relates to mundane armory. My crest as matriculated by the Lord Lyon King of Arms of Scotland is A demi-lion rampant Argent gorged of a coronet of four fleurs-de-lis (one and two halves visible) Azure holding between his paws an escutcheon Gules (Lyon Register, vol. 73, folio 116 (1993)). In the LoAR of August 1997, Laurel Sovereign made the following decision concerning the use of mundane armory by an SCA participant:

David's device change is an attempt to register his mundane arms in the SCA under the provisions of III.A.9 Name or Armory Used by the Submitter Outside the Society - "No name or device will be registered to a submitter if it is identical to a name or device used by the submitter for purposes of identification outside of a Society context. This includes legal names, common use names, armory, trademarks and other items registered with mundane authorities that serve to identify an individual or group. This restriction is intended to help preserve a distinction between a submitter's identity within the Society and his or her identity outside of the Society. A small change is sufficient for registration. For example, Alan Miller could not register the name Alan Miller, but he could register the name Alan the Miller. Similarly, armory must also have some small difference in final blazon to be registered. Any change that causes a blazonable difference between mundane and Society arms is sufficient to allow registration by Laurel. Further, a submitter may register a close variation of his name or his arms but not both." The problem was that the administrative handbook says that to register your mundane arms in the SCA, there must be a "blazonable difference" between the two sets of arms.

While arguably, this precedent and the rule it is construing applies only to arm/devices, and not to badges, I will accept that this precedent will be applicable to a badge submission such as this as well. However, in the LoAR of January 1998, p.27, the Laurel Sovereign, addressing protection of the crest of the Dominion of Canada, noted "While mentioned in LoI as a badge, this is a crest, and it is long standing CoA practice not to register or protect crests." Therefore, if a relatively well-known royal crest is not entitled to protection, it follows that my mundane crest should not be entitled to protection either, and therefore, I should be entitled to register it, and protect it, in the SCA.

Finally, even if neither of these points are accepted, the submission under consideration contains two blazonable differences from my mundane crest, and should be able to be registered. First, my mundane crest does not address the treatment of the lower edge of the demi-lion, while this submission clearly specified that it is erased. Secondly, while the coronet in my mundane crest is expressly composed of four fleurs-de-lis, the coronet gorging the neck of this submission is the generic coronet used throughout the SCA, and does not specify the nature of the elements used to decorate the upper edge.

The third issue relative to this submission is possible conflicts. There are two registrations which feature demi-lions in the SCA. These are (Fieldless) A demi-lion argent issuant from a cloud Or (Thomas Bordeaux) and Per pale sable and gules issuant from a torse argent and sable a demi-lion erect argent grasping in its dexter paw a sprig of bramble vert fimbriated argent (Roger de Bremble). With respect to Thomas's badge, it seems fairly certain that the cloud is of sufficient significance as to be entitled to treatment as a secondary, which would give the second necessary CD, with one for the fieldlessness, and one for the cloud. As to Rogers, given the blazon, the fact the torse is blazoned first suggests that it is either the primary or of sufficient significance to be entitled to be treated as a secondary as well. However, this is not a certainty.

Alternatively, consider the presence of the coronet in the current submission. In the LoAR of September 1993, Laurel Sovereign determined:

When considering a full beast or monster gorged, the gorging is usually treated as an artistic detail, worth no difference. When consider the same creature's head gorged, however, the gorging is much more prominent in proportion - and treated as a tertiary charge. This therefore does not conflict with the arms of Marie Simone de Barjavel la Fildena (SCA), Ermine, a griffin's head erased gules armed sable, gorged of a ducal coronet, grasping in the beak an arrow bendwise Or. There's a CD for the field, and a CD for the gorging.

This precedent has been reaffirmed since that time both as to gorging on heads of beasts (allowing a CD) and on gorging of full bodies of beasts (disallowing a CD). I have not been able to locate a precedent addressing a demi-beast gorged of a collar or coronet. Given the relative size of the demi-body gorged and the coronet, it seems that the coronet should be entitled to treatment as a tertiary.

8. Demetrios Miothophoros, from Demetrius il Condottiero Name Change


His name was registered in Calontir in 1988. He states that <Demetrios Miothophoros> is the Greek translation of Demetrius il Condottiero; LB would appreciate assistance with documentation. The client declines to accept minor changes to the name.

9. Draga Drevo Device Resubmission to Laurel

Vert a hurst of three trees blasted and eradicated on a bordure argent an orle of ivy vert (Wyewood)

Her name was registered on the LoAR of 5/98. Her device was returned on the same letter, with the following comment: This is being returned for a redraw. The charge on the bordure is not really blazonable. It is not clearly a vine or a semy of ivy leaves.

This is a redraw of the bordure and its ivy vine.

10. Evota Arundel of Trowbridge Name New


She is willing to accept unspecified changes; she favors the sound for 15th century England. She cites <Evota> from Withycombe, sub. 'Eva' and <Arundel> from Reaney and Wilson's 3rd. She includes photocopies from Trowbridge in Pictures and The Official Guide to Trowbridge, which latter dates the town under its present name from the reign of King Stephen until the present.-

11. Fionn Ui NČill Name and Device New

Vert, a chess pawn argent, a chief argent, fretty vert (Madrone)

He will accept unspecified changes, and would like the name to be a male name in 16th century Irish. He includes photocopies from A History of Ireland by Edmund Curtis, in which is listed on page 4 "…chief was Finn MacCumhaill.."; on page 5 is found "…who were known till 1022 as the Ui NČill, or 'descendants of Niall…".

12. Fionn Ui NČill Badge New

Per saltire vert and argent, within a mascle a chess pawn, counterchanged both (Madrone)

His name is submitted above.

13. Frederick Badger Badge New

(Fieldless) A chalice sable bendwise sinister, charged with a decrescent argent bendwise sinister (Madrone)

His name was registered on the LoAR of 5/98. His form is unsigned.

14. Juliana Kendal Device Resubmission to Kingdom

Or, a sexfoil, gules and argent, barbed and seeded proper, within a bordure rayonny gules (Lion's Gate)

Her name was registered in 1996. Her previous device submission was returned on the letter of June 1997, but her letter of return was not issued until October 1998. The return was for having too many 'rayons' on the bordure. She has also included a letter of permission, should one be needed, from Gerhard and Amanda Kendal; it states that the Kendal flower is released to any who might wish to use it, and especially to Juliana.

15. Just John Name and Device New


Purpure, a fish haurient maintaining in its mouth a balance Or and on a chief azure three mullets of five Or

The submitter cites the Oxford Dictionary for <Just> and the King James Bible for <John>, and mentions the registered name 'Just Rick'. The client will accept unspecified changes, and will accept 'John the Just' if <Just John> is not acceptable. The fish is yellow, the balance and mullets are gold (metallic). Yes, the field is purpure and the chief is azure.

16. Madhu Brahman Name and Device New

Per chevron inverted indented Or honeycombed sable and sable, a goutte and a base Or (Madrone)

She is willing to accept unspecified changes. She would like the name to be correct for Gupta period India. Photocopies are included from A Dissertation on the Proper Names of Panj’bÓs, with Special Reference to the Proper Names of Villagers in the Eastern Panj’b by Captain R.C. Temple, published in 1883 by the Bombay Education Society's Press. (Okay, I thought it was swell). On pages 62-63 there is a paragraph that states, showing examples, that the names of kings, at least "in no way differ from those of 500 years ago either in form or derivation". On pages 64-65, it is stated:

"..In studying Sanskrit nomenclature no fact becomes more prominent than that almost every word in the language, even ka? who? was used to designate human beings. Open Monier-Williams Sanskrit Dictionary almost at random, and it will be found that opposite nearly every word, either in its ordinary shape or as part of a compound, is recorded, "Name of so-and-so", "Name of a man, of a king, of a prince," and so on. And from this it will be seen partly whence the wondrous variety of Indian proper names has arisen. Here are instances… of ordinary Sanskrit words used as names: - " And <Madhu>, 'sweet', is on the list following.

I informed the submitter that two names were required for SCA registration, and she asked me to add <Brahman>, a caste designation, to her name to make it registerable.

17. Madhu Brahman Badge New

Sable honeycombed Or, a goutte Or (Madrone)

Her name is submitted above.

18. Reginleif in Rau•h·ra Name Resub to Laurel


Her previous name submission, Eirika Kettlingr RagnarsdŰttir, was returned on the February LoAR for incorrect construction (Eirik cannot be feminized by adding an '-a', although some other Norse names can..). This submission states:

<Reginleif> is a female given Old Norse name found in Geirr Bassi Haraldsson's Old Norse Name, page 14.

<in Rau•h·ra> is a weak feminine nickname meaning 'the red-haired'. It is formed from the element of rau• from inn rau•i - 'the red' (ibid. pg. 26), and is found in such Norse words as rau•feldr - 'red-cloak', rau•kinn - 'red-cheek', and rau•refr - 'red fox', and the element for hair h·rr, found in inn h·rfagri - 'fair-hair' (ibid. pg. 22). In all compound Norse words that I could document combining a color with a noun, the color element proceeds the noun. The correct form for a feminine weak adjective in Old Norse that forms a nickname is in the format in (meaning 'the'), with the adjective ending in '-a' (ibid. pages 18-19). The word construction was verified for me by Master Rauthulfr Meistari inn Orthstori, and his trusty copy of Cleasby, Richard, Vigfussun, Gudbrand & Craigie, William. "An Icelandic-English Dictionary", Oxford, Clarendon Press, 1986. Etienne d'Avignon.

Nice documentation work!

19. Richard Armistead Device New

Vert a lion passant argent between three fleurs-de-lys Or (South March)

His name was registered on the LoAR of October 1998. His previous device submission, Azure a lion passant argent between three fleurs-de-lys Or, was returned at Kingdom in June of 1998, since we in the SCA may not use gold fleurs-de-lys on a blue field. The relevant precedent reads: "Neither France Ancient (Azure semi-de-lys Or) nor France Modern (Azure three fleurs-de-lys Or) may be used in SCA heraldry either as a field (or part thereof) or on a charge. To do so constitutes a claim to connection to French royalty, prohibited under Rule XI.1. (LoAR July 1992, p.23). This is France Modern with a lion added, and had to be returned. I include this snippet from the return, so that the 'why not' is clear.

20. Saeunn Hrafnsdottir Device New

Checky Or and gules a quarter sable (False Isle)

Her name was registered in July 1998.

21. Shadiyah al-Tawilah, for Sancia Lafond Freyser de Cameron Name Alternate, Badge New

Fieldless, an ibis rising wings displayed sable maintaining an ankh Or (Dragon's Laire)

Her primary name was registered in 1992. She accepts unspecified changes, and would like the name to correctly mean 'long, tall bird' in Arabic. She includes the text of an email from Da'ud ibn Auda, via Elisabeth de Rossignol. He states that <Shadiyah> is found in al-Ja'fari's "Muslim Names", page 23. Jaschke's "English-Arabic Conversational Dictionary", page 366, gives 'tawil' as 'long'. Schimmel cites, on page 50, 'Hasan al-Tawil'. To feminize the name, '-a' or '-ah' should be added to the end, so the - and I quote Da'ud here - probably not authentic, but probably registerable name <Shadiyah al-Tawilah> results.

An Tir College of Heralds - Internal Letter - July 1999

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