Middle Kingdom Marshal's Handbook

7th Edition


TABLE OF CONTENTS


Preface


Acknowledgements

This edition of the Marshal's Handbook of the Middle Kingdom is a revision of the sixth edition prepared by Duke Sir Palymar of the Two Baronies. It is hoped that with the completion of the equestrian, scouting, and fencing sections this edition is ready to serve for a few years. The use of the three ring binder format gives us the ability to make page revisions available on a regular basis, so all marshals are able to keep up with our ever-changing rules.

Most of the sections are here from the sixth edition, although it has been rearranged into, what I hope, is a format in which items are easier to locate. Added to this edition are marshal hand signals, thanks to Sir Pieter, and running the list table, which I wrote with the hopes for making it easier for the list people at tourneys. The changes in the rules from the sixth edition are taken in part from the comments requested by Sir Bardolph Windlaufer and Count Sir Jafar al-Safa from the fighting community or directed from their superior, the Society Earl Marshal.

The combat archery rules come to us, with thanks, from Count Sir Lorell of Shrewsbury and the Kingdom of Calontir with slight modifications to fit what we do here in the Middle Kingdom. The scouting section was written by Lord Erik Erikson the Scout, the fencing section by Baron Master Aelfred of Chester, and the equestrian section by Lady Isabeau Pferbandiger. My thanks to them for sending these sections to me for inclusion in this handbook.

Thanks also to Lady Evzanie and Lord Dietrich for their reorganization suggestions, Count Sir Jafar, Baron Sir Pieter and Duke Sir Palymar for their help in editing, and Baron Lewys for redesigning the marshal forms.

I reserve a special thanks for my husband, Lord Kaydian, without whose help, computer knowledge, and support, this job would never have gotten done.

I remain, as always, in service to the MidRealm.

Lady Cassandra Antonelli
Deputy Earl Marshal of the Handbook
for the Middle Kingdom


The cover illustration is adapted from one in "The Life and Acts of Sir Richard Beauchamp, Earl of Warwick", by John Rous, 1485."

Introduction

This is the Seventh Edition of the Middle Kingdom Knight Marshal's Handbook. It replaces the Sixth Edition which was produced in A.S. XXVII by Duke Sir Palymar of the Two Baronies. It must be read in combination with the Marshal's Handbook produced by the Society Marshal (published in 1992) which is available through the office of the Society Stock Clerk. In particular, the Society Handbook provides S.C.A.-wide definitions of material which is not reproduced in this handbook.

This Kingdom boasts over 1,200 fighters. The vast workload of the Earl Marshal's office has been spread to other offices that report directly to the Earl Marshal. The Deputy Earl Marshals, all of whose names are now printed in the Pale, have taken on some of those tasks which were formerly performed by the Earl Marshal.

It is the purpose of this handbook to list the rules of the list and the conventions of combat for the Middle Kingdom as well as the standards for armor and weapons. It also spells out the duties and responsibilities of the various marshals. You will also find commentary on how to marshal tourneys and melees. It is NOT, however, the purpose of this handbook to articulate every situation or answer every question that may arise. At these times you must look beyond the written word. Society fighting is based on the subjective standard of HONOR and no amount of codifying will every encompass all of the various ways in which honor may show itself on the lists of the Midrealm.

With the increase in fighters comes the inevitable increase in bureaucracy. The creation of the Marshal's Court and the need for authorization cards is brought about because of the unfamiliarity that now exists between fighters that travel outside their home groups. There was a time when I felt like I knew most of the fighters in the Midrealm, now I can't recognize but a fraction of the fighters I see in my travels.

Trust between fighters is important. When I first started fighting, I was told my most important responsibility was to my opponent, and it is still true today. You need to trust that your opponent will hold your safety in high regard. That becomes more difficult in a kingdom where combatants may rarely see each other outside the lists. In order to increase that trust, fighters need to be aware of their actions and verbally communicate with their opponent, should any misunderstandings or hard feelings develop. In a martial art that has seen an increase in skill level and trains a person to "maim" or "kill" an opponent, only through courteous, chivalrous, and honorable behavior can we participate with safety. If you have a problem with your opponent, it is your right and responsibility to discuss it with him or her in a courteous and timely manner. It is a primary concern of the marshallate to help ensure the safety of the combatants and this can often be most easily achieved by helping fighters to better communicate with each other.

The Marshal's Court is another form of communication. When normal channels do not produce the desired results, a Marshal's Court may be convened to investigate the problem more thoroughly. The Court is not the first action a person may take, but it should not be considered the last. It is simply another tool to help bring together concerns, ideas and problems that cross over regional boundaries. I encourage everyone to read carefully the information about the Marshal's Court contained in this handbook so that it can be understood. It is there for everyone's use, be they novice or knight. And while it may be that the court will, from time to time, dispense justice, it is more suited to resolving conflicts and opening ways for change than as an instrument of punishment.

I will leave you now with a few words from Duke Sir Laurelen's Fourth Edition: "I want to foster the ideals of Chivalry, Courtesie, and Knighthood not as rewards for courtly noblesse; not as awards for prowess at arms; but as a state of being. One does not ACT honorably and courteously -- one IS. We should strive to make "MidRealm fighter" synonymous with "safest, most courteous, and best trained". It is very easy to do this if we all treat each other fairly in both fighting and marshalling."

If "rules" are enforced with tact and discretion then the Midrealm lists will always be the "Field of Honor."

Reprinted from the sixth edition (with minor changes).

Written by:
Duke Sir Palymar
May 1, 1992, A.S. XXVII


Middle Kingdom Marshal's Handbook

PART I -- HEAVY COMBAT

SECTION I -- ADMINISTRATION


Types of Marshals

The fundamental distinction between types of marshals in the Middle Kingdom is between those warranted to authorize new fighters and those who are not. Warranted marshals are the personal representatives of the Earl Marshal and, ultimately, the Crown of the MidRealm; an unwarranted marshal has no such authority.

The categories of warranted Marshals in the MidRealm are the Earl Marshal (EM), the Principality Earl Marshals (PEM), the regional Deputy Earl Marshals (RDEM), the other deputy Earl Marshals (DEM), Chivalry acting as Reserve Marshals (RM), warranted Group Knight Marshals (including Baronial Knight Marshal), and Knight Marshals of the Field.

Group Knight Marshals-in-Training are a special case. These individuals are warranted officers of the marshallate and may supervise local fighting practices. However, they may not authorize new fighters or conduct tournaments.

Only these marshals and the Sovereign (see Rules of the List #4) may authorize fighters to compete in SCA combat in the Middle Kingdom. All but the Sovereign must be warranted, the Sovereign being the final authority of the marshallate. They must also be authorized fighters within the Middle Kingdom, and currently an Associate, Subscribing, Contributing, or Patron member of the S.C.A. Inc. It is also desirable that they have certified First Aid training at least equivalent to the standard American Red Cross MultiMedia First Aid course.

The following types of Marshals are not warranted to authorize fighters to participate in SCA combat in the MidRealm, although they may perform other duties of warranted Marshals as is described in detail below: Group Knight Marshals-in-Training (GKMIT); Marshals-in-Training (MIT); Acting Marshals; Constables; and marshals from other kingdoms.

The Marshal-in-Charge of an official event must be a fully warranted marshal. The Marshal-in-Charge is responsible for all the marshaling activities at an official event where there are combat or combat-related activities and for preparing (or having prepared) all reports required. This person is always the Group Knight Marshal unless the Group Knight Marshal is a Marshal-in- Training. In that case, the Marshal-in-Charge must be a fully warranted marshal acceptable to the Group Knight Marshal in Training and the group Seneschal. The Group Knight Marshal-in-Training may assist in weapons inspections and in the conduct of the lists but the Marshal-in-Charge is the person considered responsible by the Earl Marshal. The Group Knight Marshal- in-Training must prepare the tourney reports but must have the Marshal-in- Charge check and sign the report.

The fully warranted marshal is the de-facto Marshal-in-Charge in the eyes of the EM, even though the group MIT actually did all the work and put their own name on the tourney report as acting marshal-in-charge.

The Marshal-in-Charge may select a marshal to supervise a list at any time. The person is designated the "Presiding Marshal". This person should be a warranted marshal or, at least, a Marshal-in-Training. If the Presiding Marshal is not warranted, the Marshal-in-Charge must carefully supervise the Presiding Marshal.

The Presiding Marshal is the only person allowed to start or restart fighting in that list, and is the authority in any dispute except where matters must be deferred to the Marshal-in-Charge or his/her superior.

All marshals must have a marshal's tabard bearing "Sable, two swords in saltier or" (two crossed gold swords on a black field). Group Knight Marshals should have a tabard on which the arms of the group are displayed in addition to the marshal's badge. Marshals-in-Training should have a Marshal's tabard diminished by a label of cadency (contact your local pursuivant). This tabard is WORN ONLY WHEN ON DUTY. In addition each marshal should have a long staff finished in black decorated with a spiral band in yellow (for protecting themselves and fallen fighters), a whistle, and dowels and gauges for checking weapons and armor.


Warranted Marshals

The Earl Marshal (EM):
The Earl Marshal holds the final authority, under the Sovereign and the Society Marshal, to regulate Society Combat within the Middle Kingdom. Warrants for all other marshals in the Kingdom must be signed by the Earl Marshal and the Sovereigns. Decisions of other marshals may be appealed to him or her. It is the responsibility of the Earl Marshal to communicate with, and forward information required by, the Society Marshal; to maintain as far as possible a full complement of marshals at all levels throughout the Kingdom; to keep an accurate list of the authorized fighters in the MidRealm and to make this list available to the marshallate; and to supervise the offices of the Archer General of the Middle Kingdom, the Marshal of the Fence, the Marshal of the Scouts of the Middle Kingdom, the Minister/Mistress of the Lists of the Middle Kingdom, the Dean of the Equestrian College of the Middle Kingdom, and Marshal of the Coursing College of the Middle Kingdom, and the Minister/Mistress of Crown Lists of the Middle Kingdom.

The Archer-General, Dean of the Equestrian College, Marshal of the Scouts, Marshal of the Fence, and the Marshal of the Coursing College are each responsible for supervising the conduct of the activities delegated to them by the Earl Marshal, and of reporting to the Earl Marshal on a quarterly basis concerning their activities. These activities shall include training, selecting, and supervising their marshals (including the creation and maintenance of a manual); creating and revising the rules for archery, scouting, equestrian, and coursing; and such other duties as the Earl Marshal shall direct them to perform. The Archer- General, Marshal of the Fence, Marshal of the Scouts, Dean of the Equestrian College, and Marshal of the Coursing College shall rank as Deputy Earl Marshals co-equal with the Deputy Earl Marshals (emeritus). Unless specifically warranted as marshals for SCA combat they may not act as such.

The Minister/Mistress of the Authorization Lists and the Marshal of the Fence must be an authorized fighter. The Archer General, Marshal of the Scouts, Marshal of the Fence, Dean of the Equestrian College, and Marshal of the Coursing College must be warranted as a marshal within their domain before assuming the office, although they need not be authorized fighters.

The Earl Marshal has the following prerogatives, (all limited by the necessity of obtaining consent from the Crown of the Middle Kingdom and the requirement that these decisions be consistent with the decisions of the Society Marshal and the Board of Directors of the SCA, Inc.):

  1. To determine the Rules of the Lists and Conventions of Combat of the Middle Kingdom.
  2. To determine the armor and weapons standards of the Middle Kingdom.
  3. To determine the qualifications necessary for warranting as a marshal.
  4. To nominate suitable persons to fill vacant positions in the marshallate, and to replace those already serving with others.
  5. To grant authorizations in the Middle Kingdom.
  6. To revoke without limit authorizations and warrants and to ban persons from the lists, subject to the review of the Quarter Court and appeal to the Crown.
  7. To be the Marshal-in-Charge of the Middle Kingdom Crown Tournaments, or to designate an alternate Marshal-in-Charge.

    The Earl Marshal first serves a probationary period of six months; after that period is over it is customary to extend the warrant for a total of two years. The Earl Marshal may not serve more than three calendar years.

    The next two classes of marshals have fundamentally similar duties and prerogatives, and are listed together. The Principality Earl Marshal has all of the duties, rights, and prerogatives of a regional Deputy Earl Marshal, but may be given other duties, rights, and prerogatives as the Principality develops. In the sections below where a regional Deputy Earl Marshal is specifically named the Principality Earl Marshal must also be included.

    Principality Earl Marshal (PEM):
    The Principality Earl Marshal has a dual role. In the inception of a principality, the PEM's role is scarcely different from that of a regional Deputy Earl Marshal. When (if ever) the Principality becomes a Kingdom, the Principality Earl Marshal assumes the prerogatives of a Kingdom Earl Marshal. In general, the PEM has the duties and responsibilities of a regional Deputy Earl Marshal; but as the Principality develops and takes on an increasingly unique character, the Earl Marshal will delegate further responsibilities and authority to the PEM (with, of course, the consent of the Crown and the Coronet). The PEM is also responsible for being the Marshal-in-Charge at the Principality Coronet Tournaments, or to designate an alternate Marshal-in- Charge.

    Regional Deputy Earl Marshal (RDEM):
    These officers are an important link between the Earl Marshal and the Local or Group Knights Marshals. Each RDEM is responsible for an extended geographical area; within that area the RDEMs have primary responsibility for the day-to-day supervision of SCA fighting and the supervision and development of the marshallate. The RDEM also acts for the Earl Marshal in solving problems both directly and through the mechanism of the Regional Marshal's Court. The RDEMs have the discretionary power to act for the EM (and hence the Crown) in situations requiring immediate response. Deputy Earl Marshals have the responsibility of being familiar with all the local Marshals within their respective areas and with their training.

    RDEMs will report to the Earl Marshal quarterly concerning the status of SCA fighting in the region, the status of the marshallate, any actions of a Regional Marshal's Court, and on any questions of special importance. The EM will rely on the RDEM for accurate information regarding the activities of the Marshallate within their areas. The RDEMs and their geographical jurisdictions are periodically listed in the PALE.

    The prerogatives of the RDEM's (and the PEM) are as follows: they are, of course, subject to review by the Earl Marshal and the Crown and must be consistent with the rulings of the Society Marshal, the Corpora of the Society, and mundane law.

    1. RDEMs may suspend authorizations for up to six months. Such suspensions must be immediately reviewed by the Earl Marshal and may be appealed to the Regional Marshal's Court.
    2. RDEMs, as those charged with the primary responsibility for training and supervising the marshallate in their regions, have the right to veto the warranting of a candidate for advancement from the MIT status. The RDEM or PEM may be overruled by the EM or Crown, however the veto cannot be appealed to the Regional Marshal's Court.
    3. RDEMs, through their discretionary power to act for the EM and the Crown, may make those decisions that they feel are warranted to insure safety at an official event. Those decisions must be immediately reported to the EM and the Crown.

    The method of warranting a Principality Earl Marshal is defined in the laws of the Crown Principality. A Regional Deputy Earl Marshal must first serve a probationary period of six months after which the warrant may be extended for a total of two years. A second warrant may then follow the first, extending the RDEM's tenure to a maximum total of three years.

    Other Deputy Earl Marshals (DEM):
    The Earl Marshal's designated successor shall be warranted as a Deputy Earl Marshal in addition to being warranted as the successor by the Crown. The designated successor is equal in rank to other DEM's but subordinate to a PEM or RDEM.

    The Archer-General, Marshal of the Scouts, Dean of the Equestrian College, Marshal of the Fence, Marshal of the Coursing College, and the Minister/Mistress of the Lists of the Middle Kingdom rank as Deputy Earl Marshals but may not act as fully warranted marshals for SCA combat activities unless they have been specifically warranted for that purpose.

    The Earl Marshal may designate from time to time other deputy Earl Marshals. This may include, (but is not limited to), designating the Earl Marshal of another Kingdom or Principality as a deputy Earl Marshal of the Middle Kingdom. The warranting of a Deputy who resides in another Kingdom must be approved in writing by the Crown of that kingdom. It is customary to warrant the Earl Marshal of the East and the Principality Earl Marshal of Aethelmarc as deputy Earl Marshals for the period of Pennsic War.

    Group Knight Marshals:
    GKMs have the responsibility for fostering communication within the local group, and between the local group and the RDEM and EM. These officers have the responsibility of training new fighters, or of insuring that a qualified, experienced individual is found to take over these duties. They supervise all fighting events hosted by their group and submit all required reports to the appropriate superior officers. Group Knight Marshals must also secure for their groups the services of an Archery Marshal or Scouting Marshal (if group interest warrants such), and should insure that the group obtains the services of an individual to act as Chirurgeon (warranted by the Kingdom Chirurgeon).

    Knight Marshals of the Field (KMoF):
    These individuals are fully warranted marshals who are not responsible for a specific group, but perform all the field duties of a Marshal. They do not submit reports unless they act as Marshal-in-Charge at a tournament or other fighting event, but are responsible for reporting quarterly to their RDEM.

    Group Knight Marshals and Knight Marshals of the Field are warranted for a period of two years and serve at the pleasure of the Earl Marshal.

    Reserve Knight Marshals (RKM):
    All members of the Chivalry of the Middle Kingdom are warranted as Knight Marshals of the Field when they accept either the belt or the baldric and are considered RKMs as long as they are paid members of the SCA. They do not submit reports unless they act as Marshal-in-Charge. Non-MidRealm Chivalry may also help in all field duties, but not in authorizations unless they are familiar with Middle Kingdom standards and have been warranted.

    All GKMs, KMFs, or RKMs acting as Marshal-in-Charge of an event may suspend an authorization or warrant for the period of the event. If such action is taken the regional Deputy Earl Marshal and the Earl Marshal should be notified immediately.

    All of the above categories of marshals may authorize fighters in weapons forms in which they themselves hold an authorization.

    Other (not fully Warranted) Marshals
    The following types of marshals may NOT authorize fighters to participate in SCA combat in the MidRealm:

    Group Knight Marshal-in-Training (GKMIT):
    All new marshallate personnel will be Marshals-in-Training for at least the first six months (two report periods). These officers are Marshals of Baronies, Cantons, Marches, and Shires, who are learning by gaining the experience and training to fulfill all marshallate duties. Group Knight Marshals-in-Training must take responsibility for training their groups fighters and running events advertised in the Pale as de facto Marshal-in-Charge (though a fully warranted marshal must supervise the GKMIT and must sign the Tourney report). In other words, GKMITs do all the work of fully warranted marshals except that they may not authorize fighters to participate in combat and must be supervised by a warranted marshal when conducting events advertised in the Pale.

    GKMITs are warranted by the Earl Marshal as officers of the local group. These warrants are subject to a six-month probationary period; after that period the warrant extends for an additional one and one half years by which time they must have completed the MIT process or they will need to start over. A GKMIT must complete the same process as an MIT for advancement to full warranted status.

    Marshal-in-Training (MIT):
    A fighter who wishes to become a Knight Marshal of the Field may apply for MIT status. Unlike the Group Knight's Marshal the MIT has no duty to report and does perform the functions of de facto Marshal-in-Charge. An MIT must learn through example; by assisting warranted marshals at events during weapons inspections, watching authorizations, acting as a constable, and through the classes given at various sites (especially the RUM sessions).

    An appointment as a Marshal-in-Training is made by the Earl Marshal or by one of the RDEMs. The Marshal-in-Training must accomplish the following over a period of at least six months before the MIT is eligible:

    1. Assist the Marshal-in-Charge of a major official event in all the duties of a Marshal-in-Charge; including weapons inspection, marshaling, authorizations, and reporting.
    2. Attend at least one of the training sessions offered by the Earl Marshal or an instructor designated by the Earl Marshal at a RUM session or other event.
    3. Pass a qualification test administered by the RDEM or their designate.
    4. Be acceptable to the RDEM of the region in which the MIT resides, the Earl Marshal, and to the Crown of the Middle Kingdom.

    The period of time from becoming a fighter until one becomes a warranted Marshal is rarely less than one year.

    Out-of-Kingdom Marshals
    Out-of-Kingdom Marshals may not authorize fighters to participate in combat in the Middle Kingdom unless they are warranted by the EM to do so and are familiar with the conventions of the Kingdom, in which case they become warranted marshals.

    Acting Marshals
    These are fighters who are temporarily given charge of the lists. The Marshal-In-Charge of the Tournament must use discretion in choosing them, (i.e.--not using raw novices), and must have them supervised by a warranted marshal. Acting marshals under supervision learn marshallate procedure and the finer points of fighting, especially the problems sometimes associated with blow acknowledgement. Other gentles may be appointed by a Marshal-in-Charge to assist in the operation of a tournament, melee, or fighting practice. These appointments do not confer on the appointed person the powers of a warranted marshal, but they do carry specific responsibilities. These positions include acting marshals and constables.

    Constables
    Constables are Society members who supervise the list boundaries, and who may perform other duties at the direction of the Marshal-in-Charge of the Tourney. The Marshal-in-Charge should define clearly if and when the constables may call HOLD, and when they should gaff fallen fighters in melee. Constables should be authorized fighters whenever possible, and should be full marshals or experienced fighters during Crown Tourney list bouts. Constables must sign waivers before acting as such.


    Reports

    Writing reports is the most tedious and boring aspect of a Marshal's work. Nevertheless, reports are necessary because they give the EM and the DEMs their chief indication of the affairs of the groups for which they are responsible. If reports are not submitted, the EM has no idea whether the marshal's job is being done properly. Non-reporting marshals will be removed promptly. Therefore, one of the first duties of a group marshal is to find out the name and address of his/her superior officers (EM, RDEM, and Baronial Marshal, if any) and when reports are due. Local marshals should keep copies of all reports submitted. Standard report forms make this procedure easy if the basic instructions are followed in filling them out.

    Quarterly Report
    These should include a correctly filled out Quarterly Report Form with all changes in the local list of authorized fighters that occurred in the last quarter. This will tell the Marshal's superiors when the Group loses or gains fighters, when a fighter authorizes in a new form, and should include any change in the Group Knight's Marshal. Any fighter who has not participated in an official S.C.A. fighting event for a year, or who quits the Society should be reported as inactive. If a fighter moves away, the name of his/her new group, if any, should be reported. Other descriptive information concerning training, problems, and injuries should be included on a separate sheet.

    All reports should have the following information included in them:

    1. Name of reporting marshal, (both mundane and SCA)
    2. Address and phone number of reporting marshal
    3. Name of SCA group and mundane location
    4. Names, (mundane and SCA), addresses, phone numbers, and authorized forms of all fighters within the group

    Incipient groups must report every quarter even if there are no changes. Full status groups need only to report the changes that have occurred since their last report.

    Quarterly reports are due on March 15, June 15, and September 15. Copies are to be sent to the RDEM; and, if any changes have occurred, to the Minister of the Lists.

    Domesday Reports
    Each Group Knight's Marshal is required to submit a copy of the Domesday report to the local Seneschal by December 15. The acceptable Domesday Report will cover the entire year's activity. It need not be long, just complete. This report is sent to the EM, RDEM, and Minister of the List (with changes highlighted).

    Tourney Reports
    These must be sent within a week of the event at which the tourney took place and shall be submitted using the standard forms for the appropriate information. These reports shall be mailed to the RDEM and Minster of the List.

    Required Tourney Reports:
    Tourney Report
    Marshal's Sign Up Sheet
    Combat Authorization Report
    List of Participants
    Injury Report (if needed)

    Optional Reports:
    Sequential list of bouts.
    Elimination Trees.

    Crown or Coronet Tournament Reports must be filed with the EM and shall include all of the required and optional reports.

    Injury Reports
    A separate injury report must be filed for each instance of an injury involving combat. Preferably, these reports should be copies of reports generated by the presiding Chirurgeon. However, if that report is not available, the Marshal in Charge is responsible for describing the nature of the injury and the circumstances under which the injury occurred. The report should be short and concise.

    Authorization Forms and Reports
    The Authorization Form should be completed by the Marshal-in-Charge of the event and the whole form given to the fighter along with their waiver before the end of the tournament. It is the responsibility of the fighter to send the paperwork to the Minister of the Lists to get their authorization card.

    Authorization Reports should be completed on the separate Summary Authorization Report form and shall include all information required as listed on the form. All information must be legible. Authorization Reports should be sent to the Minister of the Lists, who will issue Authorization Cards when both an authorization report and a completed Combat Waiver have been received.

    DO NOT SEND THESE REPORTS BY REGISTERED MAIL, BUT DO KEEP A COPY FOR YOUR LOCAL FILES. THIS SAVES TIME AND MONEY FOR ALL OF US.

    Authorization Cards and Waivers

    It is now required that all participants who enter the list area must have an authorization card.

    All authorized fighters must obtain an authorization card which must be presented to the inspecting marshals at an official event. All scouts must contact the Deputy Earl Marshal for Scouts and obtain a scout's authorization card. Anyone who will enter the lists as a participant (fighting in a tourney, sparring, helping with authorizations, marshalling, etc.) must go to the List Table and present their Authorization Card and their SCA membership card, and sign a Participant's List and whatever other tourney lists requested. Persons other than fighters, marshals, or scouts who must enter the lists (heralds, chirurgeons, water bearers) should either obtain an authorization card for that purpose from their superior officers or execute a temporary waiver before participating at an official event.

    IF YOU DO NOT HAVE A CURRENT MEMBERSHIP AND AUTHORIZATION CARD, YOU CAN NOT FIGHT--PER CURRENT MIDDLE KINGDOM LAW.

    The only exception is when you are authorizing or reauthorizing, then you need only the membership card.


    Standard Report Forms for Middle Kingdom Marshals

    The name and address of the Earl Marshal of the Middle Kingdom is published each month in the PALE.

    The following set of forms is to be used in all cases as the "standard" reporting format. Each has its own purpose and, as a series, they are an attempt to simplify the necessary bureaucratic end of things for all of us. Take care when separating these FORMS from this Handbook because these will serve as the MASTER COPIES for your own files.

    The forms in this section are:

    • Group Knight's Marshal Report - Quarterly & Domesday Report
    • Group Knight's Marshal Report - Fighter's Roster
    • Tournament Report
    • Combat Authorization Report
    • Marshal's Signup Sheet
    • Combat Authorization Signup Sheet
    • Knight Marshal in Training Appointment Sheet


    Arbitration and Grievance Procedures

    Any fighter, marshal, herald, or constable has accepted by signing the Combat Waiver the Society-wide system of arbitration established by the Board for that purpose. This section defines that system for the Marshallate.

    The Marshal's Courts are set up for the sole purpose making decisions about infractions of the Rules of the Lists and the Conventions of Combat (plus the rules that support them contained in the Middle Kingdom Marshal's Handbook). This includes fighter authorizations, marshal's warrants, and the ability of a herald or constable to function within the lists. In the latter case, the Courts can only bar the individual from the lists.

    This effectively standardizes and formalizes the current powers of the Earl Marshal (and, by delegation, the Principality Earl Marshal, the regional Deputy Earl Marshals, the Group Knight Marshals, Marshals of the Field, and Chivalry acting as reserve Marshals of the Field) has for dealing with problems.

    Marshal's Court
    The Marshal-in-Charge of an event may, from time to time, have to discipline an individual. As a representative of the Crown and the Earl Marshal, the Marshal-in-Charge may remove a participant from the lists, remove a warranted marshal from the lists, or prohibit the presence in the lists of other persons who have combat related activities, (heralds, constables, etc.). The Marshal-in-Charge may also suspend a fighter's authorization card for the duration of the event. The Marshal-in-Charge in that case must immediately notify the PEM/RDEM and the Earl Marshal who would then treat it as a complaint under the section entitled "PEM/RDEM's Court".

    The Marshal-in-Charge or an affected individual may request that a "Marshal's Court" be convened to examine the issues and determine what actions (if any) will be taken. The decision of the Marshal's Court then supersedes the decision of the Marshal-in-Charge (if different) unless the Marshal-in-Charge is the Earl Marshal or the Crown.

    Marshal's Courts may be convened for the consideration of unchivalrous conduct, use of excessive force, violations of the Rules of the List and Conventions of Combat, use of illegal or uninspected equipment, etc. It may also function as a fact-finding body (for example, examining the events leading to an injury) and make a determination of who, if anyone, was at fault.

    The Marshal's Court may remove a person from the Lists for the duration of the event and may confiscate the person's Authorization Card. If the Card is confiscated the PEM/RDEM and EM must be notified by telephone or Express Mail and the report of the Court and the Authorization card forwarded quickly to the Earl Marshal. The Court may warn an individual that these actions may be taken, or it may take no action at all. It may decide that the complaints were unfounded.

    The Court is composed of the Marshal-in-Charge of the event, who shall preside and who is responsible for a Report of the Court; a warranted marshal chosen by the affected individual; and a member of the Chivalry chosen by the Marshal-in-Charge or the chivalry present. In the event the Marshal-in- Charge has a conflict of interest s/he shall select another warranted marshal to replace him/her. Should no members of the Chivalry be present or all have conflicts of interest the Marshal-in-Charge shall select one of the most experienced fighters present as a replacement.

    The Court needs to reach a decision by majority vote, at a time to be determined by the Marshal-in-Charge (but it must meet on the day of the event). The Marshal-in-Charge must see that a Court Report is forwarded to the Earl Marshal. Any action of a Marshal's Court is automatically reviewed by the Quarter Court, (see below). Appeals of any decision by the Marshal's Court by either the defendant or the complainant would go to the Quarter Court. However, any decision of the Marshal's Court would stand until reviewed by the Quarter Court. The Earl Marshal may suspend the action of a Marshal's Court, however, until the decision is reviewed by the Quarter Court.

    Report System and the Regional Marshal's Court
    After receiving two or more unsolicited written complaints about an individual's violations of the Rules of the List, the Conventions of Combat, or other rules and customs governing SCA combat or combat-related activities the Earl Marshal shall review that individual's behavior. If the complaints have merit but are not deemed by the Earl Marshal to be an immediate safety issue the individual shall be put "on report" for six months. The individual and the RDEM will be privately informed by the Earl Marshal of that status; the local Group Knight's Marshal will not be notified. If no further complaints are received the Earl Marshal will remove the "on report" status after the six months period.

    An individual "on report" may request the convening of a Regional Marshal's Court as in the case of the Marshal's Court so that the individual may view the evidence and confront the complainants. The Earl Marshal may cancel the "on report" status, (for example, if the complainants decide not to participate in the Court), in that case the affected individual would then not view the reports or learn the identities of the complainants.

    If additional reports are received, or the Earl Marshal considers that there is an immediate safety issue, the Earl Marshal can take the following steps:

    1. Request that the Principality Earl Marshal or regional Deputy Earl Marshal convene a Regional Marshal's Court in the individual's home group. The Regional Marshal's Court would be composed of the Group Knight Marshal, the Principality or Regional Deputy Earl Marshal, and a warranted marshal chosen by the individual. The PEM/RDEM would preside. If the Group Knight's Marshal, PEM, or RDEM were interested parties the Earl Marshal would choose replacements. This Court would operate as described in the section called "Marshal's Court", and could suspend a fighter's authorization for one month or cancel a marshal's warrant for a similar period, warn the individual, or decide that there was no basis for the complaints.

      The Earl Marshal could at his/her discretion affirm or reverse the decision of the Regional Marshal's Court. The decision of the Earl Marshal could be appealed to the Quarter Court (see below).

    2. The Earl Marshal may investigate the complaints and then make a decision based on the facts discovered in that investigation. That decision could then be appealed to the Quarter Court by the affected party.

      This course of action would be taken if the Earl Marshal felt that the delay in acting would endanger either the affected individual's safety or the safety of those around him/her.

    3. The Earl Marshal may take some lesser action (verbal warning, letter of reprimand, or no action at all). This decision would also be subject to appeal first to the Quarter Court.

    All decisions of the Earl Marshal would remain in force until:

    1. The Earl Marshal accepts the decision of a Marshal's Court or the Quarter Court, or
    2. The Earl Marshal's decision were reversed on appeal to a Court of Chivalry , the Crown, the Society Marshal, or the Board of Directors of the SCA, Inc.

    Quarter Court
    The Quarter Court is the principal court of appeals for this system of arbitration. It is composed of the Earl Marshal, who presides, a member of the Chivalry chosen by his/her peers to serve for a period of one year, and a person appointed by the Crown at the start of the reign.

    If the EM has a conflict of interest then they are replaced by a PEM/RDEM. If the member of the Chivalry has a conflict they are replaced by an alternate member of the Chivalry. If the Crown's appointee has a conflict of interest then the Crown must appoint an alternate.

    The Court reaches a decision by majority vote. It meets quarterly (at both Crown Tourneys, Pennsic, and a winter event chosen by the Court's members). Decisions made by a Marshal's Court or a PEM/RDEM's Court will be automatically reviewed, as will all cases in which an authorization has been suspended or revoked or an injury has occurred.

    The Court has the power to overturn, augment, or otherwise alter any lower court or administrative ruling, given the constraints below: it may clear a participant from any charges or penalty given by a lower unit or administrative fiat, it may bar a fighter from participation for a specified length of time, or it may recommend that a Court of Chivalry be conducted.

    The Court may also consider issues (such as interpretations of the rules, fighting conventions, etc.) brought before it by any members of the Court. In this case the Court may only make recommendations to the appropriate office/body.

    Minutes of all court proceedings are taken and passed on to the Crown and the Society Marshal. All decisions of the Quarter Court are considered final, but may be appealed to a Kingdom Court of Chivalry, subject to the provisions for those courts in Kingdom Law and Corpora. Any decision of the Quarter Court shall remain in effect in perpetuity unless reviewed and overturned, augmented, or otherwise altered by a Kingdom Court of Chivalry, the Crown, Society Marshal or the Board of Directors of the SCA, Inc.

    Kingdom Court of Chivalry
    The nature and function of this court has already been defined by the Corpora of the Society and the Laws of the Middle Kingdom and therefore will not be discussed here.


    Running Tournaments, Melees, and Wars (at and Event)

    Although the Autocrat is the chief person responsible for an event, the Marshal-in-Charge of the event, who is usually the local Group Knight's Marshal, is still charged with seeing that all fighting and dangerous sports are done in a safe and organized manner.

    The Marshal's job begins when the event planning starts. The marshal should consult with the autocrat to see that the desired activities can be done safely at the proposed site. For example, a tourney can not be held in a ten-foot-wide, windowed hallway, nor in the desert in July if no water is provided. Non-fighters sometimes do not consider these things. The marshal should consult with others as well: the chirurgeon, the list officer, the Herald in charge, and the archery marshal.

    The local chirurgeon should make plans to cover any medical emergency, including having a first aid kit at the tourney, finding the nearest hospital and the fastest route to it, knowing the local emergency phone number and the location of the nearest phone (and change to use the phone!), and assuring a water supply. It is also wise to know where the nearest toilets are (not as silly as it sounds). If there is no local chirurgeon, it is the responsibility of the Group Knight's Marshal to work with the autocrat to insure that all of the preceding things have been accounted for. The Group Knight's Marshal should contact the Kingdom Chirurgeon to see if a nearby chirurgeon is available.

    Discussion with the list officer and the herald in charge should be held to clarify the lines of communication, so that there is never any confusion as to who fights whom when, or what activity is scheduled to occur. Even "relaxed" events need prior planning. Archery may only take place under the guidelines established by the Archery Corps. All groups doing archery should have a copy of the "Supplement to the Archer's Handbook," available from the Archer General. The safety of the range and the procedures of the shoot are very important. Archery is one of our most dangerous activities.

    If any fencing is to be done, a warranted fencing marshal must be present.

    If any non-S.C.A. martial demonstrations are desired, the permission of the EM and Crown must be obtained in writing. The Marshal-in-Charge should investigate carefully to see that such demos are to be carried out only by persons competent in the activity.

    NOTE: It is law in the Middle Kingdom that firearms may not be fired at any MidRealm event.

    Setting up the Lists

    The size, shape, and condition of the list field have much to do with the safety and enjoyment of the fighters and the spectators. A readily apparent, safe barrier, reinforced by constables, is the best boundary. If a list must be set up in the middle of a field or in a large room without such boundaries, great care must be taken. It is often best to take one end of a room for the list field and use the walls for three of the boundaries, leaving only one rope barrier between the combatants and the audience.

    If all the spectators are SCA members, (and are accustomed to SCA combat), a single list rope is permissible. The marshals should be careful to watch for little children who may run onto the field with little or no warning; spectators should be kept about one body length behind the rope.

    If the site is one at which many of the spectators might be expected to not be familiar with SCA combat, (such as a demo), then a double list rope is necessary. The inner rope should be at about chest height, (so that the fighters can see it), and the outer rope should be about three feet off the ground, (in order to restrain children from running underneath). The distance between the inner and outer barriers should be about six feet. HOLD is called when the fighters reach the inner line, while spectators are not permitted closer than the outer line.

    Barriers at sites where large melees or wars are to be held depend on the number of fighters, the size of the audience, and the number of marshals available. A double line is also highly desirable, but in this case the distance should be fifteen feet or greater. The setup at large wars can dramatically effect the outcome of a battle and should be discussed with the leaders of the armies well in advance.

    Only those who have signed waivers are allowed within the lists. The conditions of the surface of the list should be closely investigated as well.

    Waivers

    All competitors in the list, all archers, all tournament officers, (i.e., marshals, constables, heralds, list officers, archery marshals, etc.), and all participants in boffing and all combative sports, ("Red-Rover", "Clench-a-Wench", etc.), must possess a valid combat authorization card issued by the appropriate official of the Middle Kingdom - the Minister of the Lists for fighters, the Master of the Scouts for scouts, and the Archer General for archers - or execute a "Combat Waiver" before entering the lists.

    Any activity that requires waivers must be supervised by a marshal or an autocrat, or a delegate of the autocrat. Collection of the waivers is ultimately the responsibility of the marshal-in-charge of the tournament and, though it is generally not the marshal who collects these himself, it is the marshal who must make sure that it is being done.

    The Marshal-in-Charge at every official tournament that takes place in the Middle Kingdom shall insure that at least one copy of the Middle Kingdom Knight Marshal's Handbook is present and available at the list table for the duration of the tourney. Before any tourney begins, all MidRealm fighters shall be asked, "Have you read and understood the Rules of the List and the MidRealm fighting conventions?". If any fighter has not, s/he shall do so before being allowed to enter the list, (THIS SHOULD HAVE BEEN DONE BY EVERY FIGHTER LONG BEFORE EVER GETTING TO A FIGHTING EVENT). Visitors from other Realms shall be similarly familiarized with the basic MidRealm conventions, as a group if need be.

    Marshallate Duties at the Event

    Before equipment inspection, the Marshal-in-Charge should summon all the marshals and Chivalry present to see how many are available to share the work. If marshals are in the habit of working part-time at the events they attend, everyone's workload will be lighter.

    There's no reason that marshals can't fight at the tourney if everyone helps in turn. If the local marshal is a MIT, this marshal-meeting is particularly important. Unless s/he is an absolute novice, the local marshal should run the event, even if there are more experienced marshals present, but it should be done with their active cooperation. If the Marshal-in-Charge is experienced, s/he should get any MITs present actively involved in running the tourney, especially so that they may learn how to inspect equipment, authorize fighters, and when and how to intervene in the fighting.

    Equipment Inspection

    Weapons and other equipment should be thoroughly inspected before any combat takes place. This is especially important for melee events such as wars, where larger numbers of fighters may be participating. Familiar equipment should also be checked closely, for even the best built gear will eventually fail. A fighter who owns any defective gear is required to show any repairs or modifications to the marshal who failed the gear. Any badly defective gear that can not be brought up to standards may not be used that day and should be marked, if possible, to encourage its repair before the next time it is used.

    Armor belonging to fighters visiting from other Realms must comply with the standards of their own Kingdoms, and is allowable, even if at variance with the MidRealm standards.

    First Aid

    It is not the responsibility of the marshallate to provide medical care for fighting injuries. The S.C.A., Inc. takes no responsibility for first aid or medical care provided by any of its members. It is, however, the responsibility of the Marshal-in-Charge of a tourney to know where medical care can be found, if necessary. The Marshal-in-Charge, the Autocrat, and other event officials should know where the nearest hospital is and how to contact an ambulance quickly. Furthermore, the Marshal-in-Charge should work closely with the local representative of the Middle Kingdom Chirurgeon Corps. The Chirurgeons are officers under the direction of the Kingdom Chirurgeon who volunteer their services at events. If the group sponsoring the event has no Chirurgeon of its own, the marshal should contact the Kingdom Chirurgeon to see if a nearby member is available to attend the event.

    Marshals should obtain minimum first aid training to aid them in recognizing different types of injuries, so that they will know what kinds of injuries require more professional treatment. There are some injuries and conditions which make it unwise for a fighter to enter or re-enter combat. These conditions include, but are not limited to:

    However, no one may bar an individual from the lists for medical reasons, unless the fighter cannot follow the Rules of the Lists and the Conventions for Combat.

    Marshals in the Middle Kingdom should be very aware of the dangers of heat in summer fighting. Heatstroke is particularly dangerous. This is a condition where the body can not dispose of the excess heat properly and the body's temperature begins to rise catastrophically. Symptoms include dizziness, nausea, hot, dry skin, and a sensation of being on fire. If heatstroke is not treated immediately the person can die. The most qualified medical help available should be summoned immediately. The victim must be placed in shade, in a legs-up, head-down position, and cooled with wet cloths or liquids until competent medical personnel arrive.

    Heat exhaustion is less dangerous but still unpleasant. It is caused by dehydration and usually comes on slowly. Symptoms include weakness and nausea. Treatment consists of getting the person out of the sun and having him/her drink water and fruit juices.

    The key to a happy tournament in hot weather is a combination of taking it easy and elementary preparedness. Realize that a hot, humid day is a dangerous one; have plenty of liquids available, and watch active people closely for danger signs. Make sure people don't push themselves too far. Active people should drink plenty of NON-ALCOHOLIC liquids to prevent dehydration. Fruit juices and Gatorade (diluted to 50% strength) are very good because they replace minerals depleted by sweat, in general electrolyte replacements should be diluted. Salt tablets are unnecessary and sometimes dangerous, avoid them. Fighters should remove much of their armor when they are not fighting -- loose, light clothes allow proper cooling. Helms should be kept out of the direct sun when not being worn. Sunburn should be avoided too because it can cause dehydration. Sun hats or head veils should be worn by everyone who must stay in the sun for long periods, and everyone else should take advantage of the shade.

    The dangers of summer heat are among the most serious faced by fighters, and marshals should strive to make all fighters aware of them. The Marshal-in-Charge must also take steps to assure that the marshals in the field are given liquids and rest when needed.

    It should also be recognized that the cold has unique effects on armor, weapons, and fighters as well and proper precautions are wise.

    Marshallate Authority to Halt an Event

    In the event of a serious violation of the Rules of the List, the Marshal-in-Charge shall use his/her authority to stop the fight and/or take such other action as is necessary to correct the situation. If that authority is questioned, or if s/he is unable to stop the activity which is in violation, s/he shall summon the Marshal-in-Charge who, if s/he is also unable to stop the violation will use the following emergency procedure:

    S/he will immediately go to the Sovereign and say, "Your Majesty (or Highness), it is my duty to inform you of a violation of Rule number ____ and to advise you to use Your authority to correct the situation. If this situation is allowed to continue, the SCA will be forced to withdraw its sanction from this event (tournament, revel, etc.) and you will be held legally responsible for any consequences."

    If the authority is unavailable, unable, or unwilling to act, the marshal shall go to the Seneschal and say, "My Lord/Lady Seneschal, it is my duty to inform you of a violation of Rule number ____. In the name of the SCA I request that you aid me in correcting this situation, and if the situation cannot be corrected, I desire you to withdraw the Society sanction from this event." If this does not work, the marshal is instructed to summon a herald and require him to make the following announcement, "My Lords and Ladies, I regret to inform you that since the Rules of the Lists are not being obeyed, this event can no longer be considered an official event of the Society for Creative Anachronism, Inc., and is officially closed. Any activity taking place on this field from this time forward is a private affair, for which activity the individuals concerned will be totally and solely responsible." If no herald is available to make the announcement, the marshal shall make it himself. The marshal should then withdraw from the field, taking all SCA officers. He must immediately report to the EM by telephone, followed by a report in writing with copies to the Marshal of the Society and the B.O.D. This has never happened in the Middle Kingdom as of this writing.

    Marshalling Single Combat

    In any marshalling situation a prerequisite for safety is having the lists cleared of nonessential people. This includes any tourney officers -- marshals or constables -- who are not paying attention to the proceedings. No one should ever stand near the lists with his/her back to the fighting.

    The best way to observe fighting is to have three marshals observing the fighters. The marshals should be arranged (and should shift during the fighting) so as to keep the best view of the action. One of the three should be designated as the "Presiding Marshal", who is charged with signalling the commencement of the fight and its continuance after any hold.

    Before a fight begins, several preliminaries, practical and symbolic, must be attended to. The marshals must look closely at the combatants to insure that they are wearing all the required armor. If they are not, then the fight must not proceed. Remember, fighters must wear full hand protection under their shields. Fighters should be encouraged to inspect each other's weapons closely so that they will realize fully what they are facing.

    Prior to the start of the tourney all fighters should be asked if they have read the Rules of the List, the Fighting Conventions, and if they have signed a waiver. All must have done so before fighting. The ceremony of commencing a fight is generally split between the Presiding Marshal and the field herald. The marshal asks the fighters if they bear any offensive steel on the field and if they are wearing all of their armor, (this question may be dropped after the first round and the first melee), the Herald tells the fighters to salute the Crown, those that "inspire them," and their opponents. The Presiding Marshal, and only the Presiding Marshal, asks if they are prepared and then commences the fight with "LAY ON" or the equivalent.

    During the fight the marshals should look for: (1) any condition dangerous to the fighter or the spectators -- a slipping fighter, a broken weapon or shield, a dropped weapon, dislodged or broken armor, etc., (2) blows being struck with the flat of a weapon, or repeated blows with the weapon haft or shaft. In such cases, a "HOLD" should be called and the condition corrected. The fight is continued with the commands, "En Garde -- Continue."

    A "HOLD", once called, must be enforced, and all fighting must cease until the "Continue."

    Judging blows is the primary responsibility of the fighters, but there are exceptions to this rule. When the blow is not good for reasons the fighters can not see -- i.e., it is flat or struck with the shaft -- the marshal must inform the combatants. Also, if the fighters ask for an opinion, the marshal should clearly give it as to the "cleanness" of the blow and what was hit, or state that s/he may not give an opinion (due to blocked vision, etc.). It must be strongly emphasized that the fighter who wants an opinion on a blow should ask the opponent involved first. To do otherwise is discourteous. If possible, the struck fighter should make the decision. If s/he decides that s/he was defeated, the fighters should square off, exchange blows and the defeated fighter should drop over dead. The announcement that the previously questioned blows did indeed kill, but death "didn't occur immediately," or some such honorable compliment to both fighters' prowess, should be made.

    The effectiveness of blows struck during Society combat are judged by each fighter on the honor system. The honor system is a difficult one because of the many factors involved; even if two identical blows could be delivered to two different fighters, they would feel them differently. Judging primarily by the force of the blows has led in the past to rapid escalation of force, particularly among long-time or heavily armored fighters. Therefore, it has been the policy of the Middle Kingdom Marshallate that the first consideration in judging the effectiveness of blows should be cleanness, i.e., whether or not the weapon struck with the weapon's effective area without being impeded, glancing, or being partially blocked by the defender's shield or weapon. Blows must, of course, be struck with reasonable force, BUT A CLEAN BLOW SHOULD BE TAKEN UNLESS IT IS INDEED EXCEPTIONALLY LIGHT OR INHERENTLY INEFFECTIVE.

    An inherently ineffective blow, for example, is a saber-style wrist flick, which is very fast but could not penetrate armor. A well-delivered blow which is unblocked should be taken. If an accurate sense of judgement prescribed by the Rules of the List seems to be lacking in a fight, the Presiding Marshal should recall three things:

    First, that the marshal has an informal power to persuade the fighters to correct intentional or unintentional misconduct, and formal powers to enforce the rules through the powers delegated by the King.

    Second, that the use of informal powers of persuasion is preferable, when possible.

    Third, the marshal does have the power, in extreme cases, to award victory in a fight, eject a fighter from the lists or require his/her reauthorization, or even disassociate the SCA from an event where the Rules of the List are being ignored.

    Marshals have a very limited ability to judge blows received by other fighters, but in some cases it is obvious that blows are not being acknowledged properly. The following guideline has been formulated:

    If a marshal sees a fighter ignoring an apparently good blow, he should call a hold at a logical break in the action. The fighters should discuss the problem, with the marshal present to insure that the conversation remains pleasant and non-intimidating. If an agreement is reached between the fighters, the marshal should honor that decision. In the event a decision is not reached, the marshal shall make a decision and enforce it. If a second such blow is ignored in the opinion of both the Presiding Marshal and the fighter's opponent, the Presiding Marshal should take action to correct the situation immediately. This means either warning the fighter that ignoring a third such "apparently good" blow will result in his being required to accept it as good; or, in extreme cases, being required to accept the blows already in question as good.

    An apparently good blow is one that originates in such a way as to land unimpeded with reasonable force. If a fighter ignores two or more blows that are more doubtful (because they were possibly, but not apparently glancing, impeded, or extremely light) the Presiding Marshal should also question the fighters. A fighter who consistently ignores a certain type of blow should be closely questioned, even if such behavior takes place over several fights. Likewise, fighters who seem to consistently deliver ineffective blows should be questioned.

    One reason for this guideline is that too often in the past marshals have not intervened when fighters were apparently being pounded into the ground because the marshals were convinced that the fighters must have SOME good reason for ignoring the blows, or because the marshals had no guideline to back up their own judgement. Meanwhile, the spectators and the other fighters drew their own conclusions. Under this procedure, if the marshal does not know why the blows are not being counted, s/he must find out quickly. An easily identified indication that a fighter expects a blow s/he has delivered to be accepted is his/her "hesitation" while waiting for the opponent to take the blow. The action to be taken varies with the situation. First it must be determined if a physical factor such as faulty offensive technique, impenetrable armor, or weapon degradation is responsible for the situation. If there is no physical factor, the struck fighter should be questioned about judgement standards (blow threshold), to see if there is any obvious discrepancy.

    If the discussion goes nowhere, or if both fighters are at fault, the fight may be postponed to let the fighters think about the problem and how they look. As a last resort the fight may be awarded to one or the other of the contestants, but such an award must be made on strong grounds with the concurrence of the other marshals.

    Any marshal officiating in the lists may point out a problem initially, but thereafter it should be handled by the Presiding Marshal in that list. Any action stronger than awarding victory (such as ejecting a fighter from the list, or asking one to reauthorize) must be taken by the Marshal-in-Charge after consulting with the other experienced marshals.

    Other problems that may require action by the marshal include dangerous offensive techniques and illegal defensive techniques. The latter are covered fairly well by the conventions of combat. Dangerous offensive techniques are more serious and deserve prompt attention. Any fighter who purposely strikes repeatedly at an illegal target area, who strikes the opponent with the shield, or is otherwise not in control of the weapon or shield, should be dealt with in three steps. (1) Warning at the first offense, (2) Banning of the technique being abused at the second offense, (3) forfeiting the fight at the third offense.

    Finally, the marshal should be alert for equipment failures. The most serious type is loss or failure of the helm. If a helmet comes off a fighter, or otherwise fails in the course of combat, the fighter is deemed immediately defeated. The reason for the occurrence must be carefully ascertained and steps taken to prevent reoccurrence.

    Many specific points of marshalling procedure are covered by the Conventions of Combat.

    BEFORE ANY "ON THE FIELD" ACTIONS ARE TAKEN, THE MARSHALS THEMSELVES WATCHING THE FIGHTING SHOULD CONFER. UNILATERAL ACTIONS ARE EXTREME AND GENERALLY RESERVED TO THE ROYALTY OR THE EARL MARSHAL.

    If a fighter has complaints about the behavior of an opponent, the first response of any one hearing such, whether marshal, fighter, or otherwise should be, "Have you talked to your opponent about this?" If the answer is no, the listener should insist that such a discussion take place before any other outsiders are involved. Marshals brought into the matter when they did not witness or notice the action in question should refrain from prematurely taking sides. Instead they should get all parties face to face for a full discussion. If a tournament has been characterized by a high number of complaints, all the fighters should be brought together to bring problems into the open before they become permanent hard feelings.

    There are many "Rules", conventions, and directives concerning fighting and marshalling. No matter how much we codify, fighting will always be, (and rightfully so), a matter of subjectivity we call HONOR. There are three "matters of honor" that, if adhered to by marshals and fighters, will insure both safety and enjoyment:

    1. Take care of each other on the field.
    2. If there's a discrepancy or problem on the field, talk right there and then and straighten it out. Don't ever be afraid to call HOLD and tactfully - "ASK THE QUESTION".
    3. Give your opponent the benefit of the doubt. This means:

      If you're not sure of the blow that hit you -- ask.

      If you're not sure of the blow you threw -- let your opponent decide.

    These simple "Rules" overridingly serve both honor and prowess.

    Marshalling Melees and Wars

    Melees and wars are among the Society's most dangerous activities. Marshalling them is more difficult than marshalling single combat. There are many reasons for both the danger and the difficulty. In a mass combat it is very difficult, if not impossible, for fighters to know what's going on all around them. Furthermore, noise, excitement, and confusion make the fighters less sensitive to the blows they receive. Finally, the conflicting desires to make the battle semi-realistic and yet not too dangerous have left us with a set of melee conventions which try to strike a delicate balance between the two desires. Even with the best will and perfect Chivalry, mistakes will be made. It is the Marshal who has the responsibility to maintain order and safety on the melee field.

    The first step in preparing for a safe melee is to make sure that the melee field is large enough and well enough constabled to prevent intent fighters from overrunning the list boundaries, spectators, children, and the Throne. Next, the marshals must make sure that any special rules to be in force for the melee are understood by all marshals, constables, and fighters alike. HOLDs, to take a particularly important case, are called in different ways and circumstances in mass combats than in single combats. A broken weapon is always cause for a hold if its owner continues to use it. However, a dropped weapon does not halt the entire battle, so a procedure to deal with this situation must be specified. Generally fighters who drop a weapon have to acknowledge blows that result from a continued attack. Nor are HOLDs called to allow fighters who have lost an arm to find a gauntlet or vambrace; any fighter who is not properly armored to resume combat safely in a very short time after losing an arm must leave the field and not return. If a fighter loses a helm in the course of the melee, s/he must leave the field as if dead, (melee convention #11). It is generally a good idea to keep those who have left a melee or battle from returning to it later. In such a case a marshal should use discretion in resolving the matter.

    When a HOLD is called in a melee, all fighters must drop to one knee, with tips of great weapons grounded, in position and stay there until the problem is resolved. This procedure, which should be strictly enforced, facilitates communication among marshals, allows them to find injured fighters quickly, and preserves the tactical situation of the battle. Fighters should be prevented from giving advice and/or instructions to each other during HOLDs, and reminded not to take unfair advantage of what is, after all, a safety break. If it is necessary to move a fight to the center of the list, the marshals should supervise the move to preserve the tactical situation. Fighters should be allowed to rise (those who have not lost legs) on the "EnGarde" before the command "Continue".

    In some cases an "Area HOLD" can be called for one restricted part of a large melee, while the rest continues. This should be done only when:

    1. The area needing the HOLD is clearly defined.
    2. There is no danger that the fighting will spill over into the "area HOLD".
    3. The hold will not be so long that the outcome of the battle will be affected.

    The marshals must be particularly careful to maintain safety when HOLDs are in effect. "Gaffing" of dead fighters is removing them from a dangerous situation under the cover of the marshal's staff or of the marshal's presence. All dead fighters need not be gaffed, but the marshals and constables should be aware of dangerous situations where it is necessary; such as when a fighter is about to be trampled or is unaware that he/she is endangered by rising. New fighters, who are usually the ones killed in the outset of the battle, should be closely watched if possible. Melees on bridges, in castle gates, including small buildings or in any restricted space where shoving becomes an important tactic, are potentially very dangerous situations. It is often difficult for fighters to distinguish the shoves from the legitimate blows. Tempers can be easily roused as well. Such melees should not be allowed to proceed without special precautions. The fight must be well marshalled by as many experienced marshals as possible. The dangers must be clearly explained to the fighters, and the combatants must be especially careful to be aware of what's happening around them. Special rules may be devised, if necessary. In this situation, or any other melee, if tempers get out of hand, the fight should be stopped until everyone cools down. Tempers are especially sensitive to situations of excessive rivalry, or high temperature and humidity. The most important single convention of melee combat is the one that states: An opponent who is not aware of one's presence is not struck. The specific practices enjoined by this rule are many and complex, and cannot be taught to new fighters too carefully. It is the Group Knight's Marshal's responsibility to have the group's trainees read the following section closely and to make sure they understand it. It is the Presiding Marshal's responsibility that fighters about to engage in melee, especially out-of-Kingdom fighters, understand the MidRealm conventions concerning proper melee behavior before the fight begins.

    Permissible Attacks and Engagements

    The most important question that must be answered is: "How does one know if he is engaged during a melee?"

    For fighters in the Middle Kingdom the answer is: If your opponent has acknowledged your presence by defending against your first light blow or by attacking you. If there is no acknowledgement, then you are not engaged and may not attack (no matter how many "taps on the helm" you've given to get your opponent's attention).

    If a fighter has not been acknowledged then he may still actively foul his intended opponent's weapons to prevent him from striking (thus probably causing him to be "killed").

    There are specific exceptions to the above acknowledgement requirements which occur during melees. These conditions do not require that combatants receive individual notification from fighters wishing to engage them during the battle (as outlined above). One case is when two lines encounter each other face to face. All fighters in each line are considered engaged with ALL those in the other until the situation changes significantly (e.g., when the lines become well mixed after a charge or sweep).

    Also, a fighter or fighters who deliberately charge into a group of opponents may be struck from any angle except from directly behind by those opponents during the charge.

    Melee combat means that any one fighter must consider that he will be approached by an undetermined number of opponents from a variety of directions. Thus engagement doesn't necessarily rely on the concepts of "behind" or "in-front". Fighters should enter melee combat with the understanding that battle will occur all around them. The rules for engagement are rules of courtesy and safety.

    Generally speaking, then, if a fighter strikes or defends against an opponent he is engaging that opponent, and is responsible for keeping track of him. If several fighters "gang-up" on another fighter, they may attack from all sides only after the presence of all has been acknowledged by their opponent.

    The next important question is: "When is one no longer engaged in a melee?"

    The answer to this question is: A fighter who removes himself from weapons range (his AND his opponent's) is disengaged. If his opponents wish to continue the fight they must approach again and re-engage. The combatant must have retreated far enough from his opponents so as to turn his back without being hit. He need not turn but he must go at least that far away. Remember: Polearms reach further!

    An exceptions is "Hot Pursuit". If a fighter is being pursued around the field by some number of opponents with flurries of blows and rapid retreat repeated over and over, any fighter in pursuit can strike without going through "engagement" procedure. Other fighters wishing to join the pursuit may do so but must first "engage" the fighter being chased so that s/he is fairly made aware of the presence of yet another opponent.

    Remember that if fighters are reminded that they may foul an opponent's weapons to prevent him/her from striking, they are less likely to initiate dangerous, unacknowledged attacks from behind. This also discourages fighters from ignoring opponents who are attempting to engage properly.

    Visual Signaling Conventions for Melees

    On the following pages are hand signals for use in melees. These signals are used for communication between marshals and fighters, and among marshals themselves in large melees.

    This systems of visual communication was introduced at Pennsic War XXIV in August of 1995, being used again at Pennsic War XXV in August of 1996 during battles run by the Middle Kingdom. This form of communication was found to be very effective for keeping large battles running smoothly. To this end, all marshals are advised to know and use these hand signals during large melees.

    This system was devised by Baron Sir Pieter van Doorn. He would appreciate any suggestions for further improvement to be directed to him at Sir Pieter van Doorn, mka Vance VanDoren, 3220 State Road 26 W, West Lafayette, IN 47906. Phone or fax: 317/497-4875. E-mail: vvandore@heartland.bradley.edu

    Running a List Table

    Having a smoothly running list area is essential to having a good tourney. In order for this to happen a capable list person is needed. The marshal-in- charge and the list person must work closely to insure a smoothly running list. The list person should be lined up as soon as possible.

    In preparation for the tourney, the marshal-in-charge (MIC), along with the list person, should check out the site. They should determine where to set up the lists, (checking for holes, rocks, etc. if outdoors), and the list table(s). Questions to consider are: Is there sufficient space for the tourney to be run? How easy is accessibility for un/loading? Is there sufficient shade? (if outdoors) Is water accessible?

    It is the MIC's duty to line up list personnel. The list person need only line up their own helpers, if needed. It is generally a good idea to have more than one person at the list table. The MIC should acquire the services of other marshals and constables, and field heralds.

    The list person should let the MIC know what materials they will need supplied for the list table. Some suggestions are:

    The MIC should also supply sufficient copies of the needed tourney reports (see page 9).

    On the day of the event, the list person should arrive early to have the list table ready when inspections are slated to begin. The following should be set up on the list table:

    • group waiver sheet
    • tourney sign-up sheets (use notepaper)
    • Marshal's Sign-up Sheet (form)
    • Combat Authorization Sign-up Sheet (form)
    • individual waiver forms
    • The Middle Kingdom Knight Marshal's Handbook
    • Combat Authorization Report (form)
    • Tournament Report (form)
    • tourney tree, if needed

    When the table is set up, have the field herald announce the list table is open. During this time fighters will come to sign-up, and authorizations will be run. Have the herald announce the closing of the list table about ten minutes before the start of the tourney.

    All fighters must show the list person their blue membership card, and the current (as of this printing it's white with blue printing) authorization card. Both of these cards must be signed, and the dates checked on the membership card. Everyone entering the lists must have a current membership card.

    Those individuals who are attempting a first authorization need only show their blue membership card. They will then fill out a Combat Authorization Sign-up Sheet and individual waiver form. Have them print neatly, and check to be sure all information is there. The list person is responsible for transferring this information to the Combat Authorization Report (form), and making sure that all information is included. These forms are also filled out for any advanced weapon form authorizations.

    The authorizing marshals and/or MIC must sign the Combat Authorization Sign- up Sheet and the Combat Authorization Report. The Pass/Fail area must also be filled in with pass or fail. Be sure that the event name and date are on both halves of the form, this is essential if the authorizee is to receive his/her authorization card. If the first-time authorizee passes, they will keep the Combat Authorization Sign-up Sheet and their individual waiver. Instruct them to send half of the form, their individual waiver and a SASE (self-addressed stamped envelope) to the Minister of the Lists to receive their authorization card. Be sure to have their information written on the Combat Authorization Report. If they fail, keep the Combat Authorization Sign-up Sheet. If an advanced weapon authorizee passes, they should have the authorizing marshal initial their authorization card, but should also be given their Combat Authorization Sign-up Sheet. They may send half their form to the Minister of the Lists, but do not need to include a SASE as a new authorization card will not be issued.

    While authorizations are being run, the list person should be preparing for the tourney. During this time, print fighter's names on index cards for the herald to use for announcing them. Randomize your fighters, and fill in the trees. Pair the index cards with the fighter's names, giving them to the herald in the following order: report to the list, arming, preparing to arm. If you aren't using a tourney tree, have your other paperwork ready.

    Running a warlord tourney is one of the easiest. Randomly pair fighters by using the index cards. After the bout, staple them together with the winner on top. This is the new team for the next round. Again, after the next bout, staple teams together with the winner on top. Continue this process throughout the tourney.

    The chart below can be used for round robin or pool tourneys. Every fighter is assigned a number, and a pool in the case of a pool tourney. The pairings are listed in parentheses, with the bye, if needed, as the lone number. It is not necessary to have a bye fought, since every fighter in the pool will get a bye. To run a pool tourney, determine the number to be in each pool and the number of pools. It is best not to have more than ten fighters in a pool. The winner or top two fighters from each pool, will then enter the final pool. There could then be a third pool, or a "final Crown round" for the top two fighters.

    5 fighters     6 fighters     7 fighters          8 fighters
    (1,2)(4,5)(3)  (1,2)(3,6)(4,5)(1,2)(4,7)(5,6)(3)  (1,2)(3,8)(4,7)(5,6)
    (1,3)(2,4)(5)  (1,3)(2,4)(5,6)(1,3)(2,4)(6,7)(5)  (1,3)(2,4)(6,7)(5,8)
    (1,4)(3,5)(2)  (1,4)(3,5)(2,6)(1,4)(2,6)(3,5)(7)  (1,4)(2,6)(3,5)(7,8)
    (1,5)(2,3)(4)  (1,5)(2,3)(4,6)(1,5)(3,7)(4,6)(2)  (1,5)(2,8)(3,7)(4,6)
    (3,4)(2,5)(1)  (1,6)(2,5)(2,4)(1,6)(2,3)(5,7)(4)  (1,6)(2,3)(4,8)(5,7)
                                  (1,7)(2,5)(3,4)(6)  (1,7)(2,5)(3,4)(6,8)
                                  (2,7)(3,6)(4,5)(1)
    
    
    9 fighters               10 fighters
    (1,2)(4,9)(5,8)(6,7)(3)  (1,2)(3,10)(4,9)(5,8)(6,7)
    (1,3)(2,4)(6,9)(7,8)(5)  (1,3)(2,4)(5,10)(6,9)(7,8)
    (1,4)(2,6)(3,5)(8,9)(7)  (1,4)(2,6)(3,5)(7,10)(8,9)
    (1,5)(2,8)(3,7)(4,6)(9)  (1,5)(2,8)(3,7)(4,6)(9,10)
    (1,6)(3,9)(4,8)(5,7)(2)  (1,6)(2,10)(3,9)(4,8)(5,7)
    (1,7)(2,3)(5,9)(6,8)(4)  (1,7)(2,3)(4,10)(5,9)(6,8)
    (1,8)(2,5)(3,4)(7,9)(6)  (1,8)(2,5)(3,4)(6,10)(7,9)
    (1,9)(2,7)(3,6)(4,5)(8)  (1,9)(2,7)(3,6)(4,5)(8,10)
    (2,9)(3,8)(4,7)(5,6)(1)  (1,10)(2,9)(3,8)(4,7)(5,6)
    

    Below is the order to run rounds for a double-elimination tourney. This is based on a 32- or 64-man tourney tree. Byes should be used to fill in empty spots. Byes should be run during the first rounds, and if needed, during the second rounds. After that, there should be no need for byes. Have the byes be fought, and make sure someone doesn't get two byes.

    • 1st Round of the Tourney
    • 1st Round Winners
    • 1st Round Losers
    • 2nd Round Winners
    • 2nd Round Losers
    • 3rd Round Losers
    • 3rd Round Winners
    • 4th Round Losers
    • 5th Round Losers
    • 4th Round Winners
    • 6th Round Losers
    • 7th Round Losers
    • 5th Round Winners
    • 8th Round Losers
    • 6th Round Winners (quarter finals)
    • 7th Round Winners (semi finals)
    • 8th Round Winners (finals)

    After the tournament is over, it is the responsibility of the list person to be sure the paperwork is all filled out correctly, make sure it's signed, and give it to the MIC. The following are the forms that need to be sent:

    1. Tournament Report
    2. Marshal's Sign-up Sheet
    3. Combat Authorization Report
    4. Tourney sign-up
    5. Combat Authorization Sign-up Sheet (for failed attempts)

    Who sends what to wom:

    Marshal-in-charge sends:
    1-5 above to his/her Regional Marshal
    1 & 3 above to the Minister of the Lists
    Authorizing fighter sends:
    5 above and
    SASE (self-addressed stamped envelope) if newly authorized
    to the Minister of the Lists

    The final duties of running the list are to clean up the area, and turn in the reports as listed above.


    SECTION II - RULES


    Equipment Standards

    The standards, regulations, and requirements defined here are in compliance with those listed in The Marshal's Handbook published by the Marshal of the Society in 1992. Some terms are defined in that manual. Any modifications to these standards will be published in the PALE and should be added to your copy of this handbook so that the most current information is always available.

    While safety and authenticity are both pursued in Society fighting, it is the policy of the Marshallate that safety comes first. Wearing the equipment specified in these regulations is no guarantee against injury, but it is required as the best precautionary measure we can devise.

    COMMENT: The words -- "recommend," "urge," "encourage," etc. do not mean that one may say, "it isn't REQUIRED so I don't need it." Armor wisely enough to prevent the more vulnerable parts of your body from being battered. It only takes a little effort to lessen the odds of an injury. We should all insure that MidRealm fighters arm themselves INTELLIGENTLY, not MINIMALLY.

    Helmet:

    1. Helmets must be made of 16 gauge steel, minimum. (16 ga. = .062 inches).
    2. No opening may be wide enough to pass a one (1) inch dowel.
    3. The faceplate must extend one (1) inch below the wearer's chin line.
    4. No metal part of the face plate may be pressed into touching the face nor should any metal part of the faceplate rest on the face.
    5. Helmets must have an effective and safely wearable chin strap.
    6. Helmets must be padded with 1/4" of closed cell foam, or the equivalent, or have a shock suspension system to prevent the helm from being driven into contact with the wearer's head by a blow. NOTE: The exclusive use of open-cell foam for padding is NOT permitted.
    7. All rivets and welds must be intact. Rivets used must be at least solid mild steel or black iron rivets a minimum of 1/8 inch dia. space no more than 2.5" apart. Welds must meet one or a combination of the following standards:
      1. Welded on the inside and outside.
      2. Welded with a single bead that extends through both surfaces.
      3. Lap joints welded or brazed at the edges of both pieces.
    8. All metal edges must be dull. Projections must not be damaging to opponents or their weapons.
    9. Freon-cans and helms made from U.S. Army or other mundane military helmets are forbidden.
    10. Minimum bar diameter is 3/16 in. or 1/8 in. if the cross bars are less than or equal to 2 in. apart.

    Eye Wear:

    The lens of all eye wear shall be shatter proof safety glass or plastic. Ordinary glass lenses are prohibited. The wearing of contacts or "sports glasses" is strongly recommended.

    Gorget/Neck:

    1. Gorgets must be constructed of hard leather or metal over padding (this is the "hard-over-soft" standard).
    2. Gorgets must be constructed so as to distribute the force of a blow to the neck area in such a way that damage to the neck is prevented.
    3. The cervical vertebrae and the trachea of the neck must also be covered by the "hard-over-soft" standard.
    4. No part of the neck may be exposed when the head is tilted forward and backward and from side to side so that a one (1) inch dowel, held horizontal to 45 degrees down from horizontal, may be put into contact with it.
    5. Aventails or camails which rest against the neck without other protection, or are of light construction and cannot significantly impede the force of a blow, are not by themselves considered adequate protection. (This is NOT tested by slowly pushing the mail to the neck using one or two fingers, as no aventail or camail will pass such a test.

    Hands and Wrists:

    1. At a minimum, hands and wrists must be protected by hockey-style gauntlets, well constructed and in good repair, with wrist openings closed.
    2. Metal finger gauntlets must be constructed in such a way that the finger lames provide protection equivalent to hockey gloves.
    3. There must be some form of protection for the wrist such that a sword cannot come into contact with it.
    4. The steel on the basket hilt must not cause injury to the user, the opponent or weapons. (i.e.. no projections or sharp edges.)
    5. All welds and rivets on the basket hilt must be intact.
    6. The shield hand must be protected in the same manner as the weapon hand.

    Elbows:

    1. Elbows must be covered over the elbow point and sides of the joint using the "hard-over-soft" standard.
    2. Persons wearing floating-style elbow cops must prove to the marshal that the cop stays over the critical elbow protection areas during normal arm movement.
    3. Elbow protection is recommended for both elbows at all times; however, it is not required that elbow protection be worn under the shield.
    4. Elbow armor extending from a vambrace must not expose the elbow when the arm is flexed.

    Knees:

    1. The knee cap and both side points of the knee must be covered using the "hard-over-soft" standard.
    2. Knee cops hanging from the leg harness must be anchored so that they do not come away from the leg while moving. 3. Knee armor extending up from the shin protection needs to be constructed in such a way that the top of the knee is not exposed while kneeling.

    Groin:

    1. The groin area must be covered by armor. For males, the standard athletic protective cup is recommended and will NOT be worn external to the trousers. For females, some equivalent kind of "hard-over-soft" protection is required. Examples of this include a "Jill", or a hard leather or plastic skirting with a gambeson extending beneath it. The skirting and gambeson must extend below the groin area. The wearing of male athletic cups by female fighters is prohibited.

    Kidneys/Body:

    1. The kidney area, the short ribs, and lower spine must be protected using the "hard-over-soft" standard. For this area only, heavy chainmail may replace the standard hard material if it provides equivalent protection.

      NOTE: The kidneys are located in the back at about the bottom of the sternum. The sternum is the large, flat bone connecting your ribs in front.

    Breast Protection (Women)

    1. Breast protection in the form of a gambeson shall be worn as a minimum.
    2. Separate breast cups are prohibited unless connected by or mounted upon an interconnecting rigid piece, ie., heavy leather or metal breast plate.

    This ends the list of the REQUIRED armor.

    Shields:

    1. Shields must be similar in weight and handling to their authentic counterparts, and should not give any unfair advantage to their user. Shields must be opaque.
    2. Shield rims must be at least 3/4 inch wide and be constructed in such a way as not to damage opponents or their weapons.
    3. Unpadded metal projections of more than 1/4 inch are not permitted on the face of the shield, with bosses being the only exception.


    Weapon Construction

    Overall Standards:

    1. The only material permitted in the construction of blades or shafts is rattan. Rattan is used because of its unique mechanical properties. Therefore, no swords may be stiffened, fiberglassed or constructed of laminations. Swords may be repaired with white glue or protected with leather or like material and any non-metallic tape.
    2. No blade or shaft of a weapon may be less than 1 1/4 inches in diameter.
    3. Weapons may NOT be laminated or have metal used in any way in the construction of the striking area. (This includes the use of lead tape as the core for a mass weapon.)
    4. Weapons that are primarily used single-handed must be equipped with an attached, sturdy lanyard strong enough to secure the weapon to the fighter's arm should he lose his grip on the hilts. These lanyards must be secured to the fighter's arm while in the lists.
    5. Spears are limited to 9 feet in length. All other weapons are limited to no more than 6 feet in length. These lengths include thrusting tips and butt spikes.
    6. Pike-mauls, thrusting shields, and ball-and-chain-style weapons are prohibited in the Lists of the Middle Kingdom.

    Swords:

    1. Greatsword: Any sword with an overall length of 4 to 6 feet. The grip of a greatsword is limited to a maximum of 18 inches including the pommel weight. Any sword with a grip over 18 inches must be padded per the polearm standard.
    2. Single-Handed Swords: Swords of 48 inches or less. The grip is limited to a maximum of 12 inches, including the pommel weight.
    3. Swordtips: Tips of all swords must be rounded.
    4. Quillions: Any quillion that extends more than 1/2 inch beyond the hand, when the sword is held normally, must be 1 1/4 in. in diameter at the ends. NOTE: The tsuba style guard generally does not violate this rule.

    Polearms:

    1. Polearms must be padded by at least 1/2 inch of flexible closed cell foam or its equivalent along any cutting surface. In addition, polearms must be padded for 1/3 of its length or 18 inches, whichever is less.
    2. The weight of the total weapon shall not exceed one (1) pound per foot of length.

    Great Axes:

    1. Great axes may be a maximum of 54 inches in length.
    2. The striking surface of the head must be a minimum of 6 inches in length.
    3. There must be 3 inches of foam or rubber between the striking surface and the haft of the great axe.

    Mass Weapons:

    1. Mass weapons include maces, axes and war hammers.
    2. Mass weapons must be padded by at least 1 inch of flexible closed-cell foam, or its equivalent, along any striking surface.
    3. The maximum total weight of a mass weapon shall not exceed five (5) pounds.
    4. Mace striking surfaces may use split rattan, heater hose, strips of rubber or leather, or superballs as clickers. A minimum of 1 inch of closed cell foam must separate the haft rattan and the clicker. The clicker must start at least 1 inch below the head of the weapon, and stop 1 inch above the bottom of the head. A clicker must be 1.25 inches wide, with a minimum space of 1 inch between clickers.

    Thrusting Tips:

    1. Thrusting tips for all weapons, except pultruded spears, must be at least 2 inches in diameter and 2 inches above the end of the rattan.
    2. There must be progressive give without bottoming out on the rattan.
    3. The tip may not bend over to the extent that the end of the rattan becomes the primary striking surface.

    Pultruded Linear Fiberglass Spears:

    1. The minimum outer dimension for the spear shaft must be no less than 1- 1/4 inches in diameter.
    2. The minimum inner diameter of the spear shaft must be no less than 1 inch.
    3. The spear must have a Schedule 40 PVC cap under the thrusting tip.
    4. The thrusting tip must be at least 3 inches in diameter and at least 3 inches above the PVC cap in addition to the other standards for thrusting tips.
    5. Fiberglass spears may have only one splice in the spear, and it may be no closer than 2 feet to either end of the spear.
    6. Splices for take-down spears must use a solid piece of fiberglass or nylon that matches the internal diameter of the spear and must be at least 12 inches in length. One-half of the solid fiberglass must be glued into one end of the splice and must fit very tightly into the other end of the splice. Duct tape or strapping tape must be wrapped over the splice to help ensure that the splice stays together.
    7. Pultruded fiberglass may not be used in the construction of spears under 7 feet in length.

    Throwing Axes:

    1. Throwing axes are to be made from heater hose, garden hose, foam, or a similar material; with all dimensions being at least 1-1/4". There is no minimum length for the handle.
    2. Thrown weapons may be used by any authorized fighter wearing full hand protection.

    Combat Archery Arrows and Javelins:

    See Combat Archery Section.


    Middle Kingdom Authorizations

    The authorization process is one of the most important safeguards in SCA fighting. Authorizations must be taken seriously. However, this does not mean that entire events must be held up by endless authorizations. Proper organization and a sense of priorities is the best way to insure that authorizations get done, without taking all the fun time.

    Concentrate at the beginning of an event on authorizing new fighters, and on those from groups so distant that they have a hard time making it to events. Require authorizing fighters to be armored and ready. Have a volunteered group of ready, EXPERIENCED, fighters to use as their opponents where possible. Other authorizations can be done throughout the day during the inevitable slow periods.

    No unpracticed novices should be allowed to attempt to authorize; it is dangerous and a waste of time.

    A copy of the Rules of the List and the Combat Conventions of the Middle Kingdom must be available at any official event at which authorizations may be conducted. Note that this includes a group practice if an authorization is to be attempted there.

    The new fighter shall have his/her arms inspected. When authorization bouts are announced go to the list officer, turn in a signed waiver if s/he has not done so already, and complete the authorization form which will list the fighter's names (both modern and SCA), and have spaces for the marshals to list the outcome of the bout. The fighter will then present him/herself armed with a single-handed weapon and shield to the presiding marshal when called. The marshal will ask the fighter if s/he has read and understood the Rules of the List and the MidRealm Fighting Conventions. If the fighter has not read them (which should not happen) s/he will be given a copy to read, and told to return when s/he has done so.

    A marshal cannot authorize someone in a weapons style that they are not authorized in.

    Anyone who has not participated in SCA combat for a year or more must reauthorize. Normally a successful authorization bout for sword and shield will reactivate all the previous authorizations held, but the person may attempt to reauthorize in another weapons style instead of single-handed weapon and shield if s/he prefers.

    All fighters, unless excused by the Earl Marshal in writing for good and sufficient reason, must authorize first in single-handed and shield. Authorization is by the use of the weapon or technique; for example, a fighter authorized in polearm may not use it to thrust unless s/he is authorized in spear (though these two authorizations may be done at the same time). Whatever the fighter is authorized in, the fighter is responsible to be competent with the weapon actually used. All chivalry are assumed to be responsible enough to use only weapons they are competent in, and so are authorized in all forms.

    All out-of-kingdom authorizations are considered valid while visiting the Middle Kingdom. Transfers of residence must reauthorize for paperwork reasons. This applies to Midrealm fighters as well. Any member of the chivalry transferring residence does not need to reauthorize, and will receive authorization in all weapon forms. They need to send a copy of their out-of-kingdom authorization card to the Minister of the Lists for a Middle Kingdom authorization card.

    TWO (2) warranted marshals are required to authorize a fighter, a third is preferable, and, in any case, at least one should be unfamiliar with the fighter authorizing.

    If there is only one full marshal at an event, s/he may NOT authorize new fighters. The fighter is required to go through a full authorization at another time in the presence of the required number of marshals.

    Authorizations at practices are allowed with following restrictions: You must have the permission of the EM or DEM first and there MUST be TWO full marshals from outside the group that holds the authorizations. Acceptions to this may be granted by the EM or DEM.

    The opponent of the authorizing fighter needs to be experienced and know to the marshals. (This is so the warranting marshals have a standard reference by which to judge the authorizing fighter.)

    Authorization Procedure (for ALL weapon forms)

    An authorization will follow a set pattern of bouts. The first is a sparring bout. Fighters acknowledge blows verbally, calling out "good to the head", "good to the leg", etc., loudly enough for the observing marshals to hear, but do not act out the blow's effect. The sparring bout should demonstrate the full range of the authorizing fighter's skill in both offense and defense. A skilled opponent will spend some of the time "pressing" the candidate and some of the time retreating from him/her to encourage a full display of skills. The sparring bout is to last no more than five minutes. A candidate who does not have the endurance to fight in a normal authorization can be failed for this reason alone.

    After the first bout, the attending marshals should meet with the opponent to discuss the performance of the fighter. Each marshal is given a chance to express an opinion on the fighter's performance. If it is decided that the fighter would benefit from advice before going on, one of the marshals may do so at this time. After the fighter has rested, then the fighter goes on to the second bout.

    The first bout in a single-handed weapon and shield (first) authorization is required to contain four separate parts:

    1. A period of time where the fighter and opponent are fully armed and on their feet. Timewise, this bout should be conducted as the first bout of any other authorization.
    2. A period of time where the fighter is on his/her knees fully armed and the opponent is on his/her feet fully armed.
    3. A period of time where the fighter is on his/her feet fully armed and the opponent is on his/her knees fully armed.
    4. A period of time where the fighter is off-hand single-sword on his/her feet and the opponent is on his/her feet fully armed.

    The second is as if for the Crown of the Middle Kingdom. All blows are acted out. Victory in the bout is not a consideration for authorization; this bout is held to demonstrate the candidate's ability to properly and safely act out the effects of the blows received and given in a manner befitting combat in the lists.

    After the second bout, the marshals meet to decide if the fighter meets the minimum criteria for authorization. If the fighter passes, they are informed. If the fighter does not pass they should be advised of their deficiencies and how to correct them. Marshals are expected to deliver this advice in a helpful and instructive manner which will foster the growth of the individual candidate, whose emotional involvement at this stage of the authorization process is likely to be intense.

    First Authorization (Single-handed Weapon and Shield) Criteria:

    1. Must have had some practice.
    2. Must be using at least a helm, shield and sword he/she has used in practice before.
    3. Exhibits safe behavior on the field.
    4. Begins in and maintains a proper stance and uses the shield or weapon properly to guard.
    5. Delivers blows from a proper range and at a proper strength and sustains an adequate offense.
    6. Reacts correctly to pressure, with the ability to "fight back" without becoming confused, disoriented or losing control.
    7. Feels and judges blows correctly, both those received and those given.

      NOTE: #2 does not require ownership, only familiarity. A person who performs poorly and uses equipment problems as a reason should not be authorized.

    Minimum Criteria for Authorization:

    1. Knows the Rules of the List and the Conventions for Combat in the Middle Kingdom and the Society for Creative Anachronism and exhibit that knowledge on the field.
    2. Must have attained the age of 18.
    3. Must be a paid member of the Society for Creative Anachronism.
    4. Read and be familiar with the Rules of the List and the Conventions of Combat in the Middle Kingdom and the Society for Creative Anachronism.
    5. Must have signed a waiver.
    6. FOR ADVANCED WEAPON STYLES ONLY: Does the fighter show some level of competence, as well as being safe, with the weapon style? Competence will always be a subjective area but can include such things as: demonstrated familiarity with the unique characteristics of the weapon style, and awareness of the tactics for both offense and defense with the style.

    Please Remember:
    Authorization is a public statement that the fighter knows the rudiments of combat and that they do not habitually do anything that constitutes a hazard to themselves or others. Fighters need not be skilled enough to win fights, only enough to compete safely.

    Authorization Categories:

    +-------+-----------------------------+-------------------------+
    |Abbrev.| Weapon Style                |Definition               |
    +-------+-----------------------------+-------------------------+
    |S/SH   |Single-handed Weapon & Shield|All single-handed sword, |
    |       |                             |axe, mace, or war hammer |
    |       |                             |and shield.              |
    +-------+-----------------------------+-------------------------+
    |GS     |Great Sword                  |All two-handed sword.    |
    +-------+-----------------------------+-------------------------+
    |DGR    |Dagger                       |All single-handed thrust-|
    |       |                             |ing weapons.  Includes   |
    |       |                             |madu.                    |
    +-------+-----------------------------+-------------------------+
    |PA     |Polearm                      |All two-handed mass      |
    |       |                             |weapons.                 |
    +-------+-----------------------------+-------------------------+
    |SP     |Spear                        |All two-handed thrusting |
    |       |                             |weapons.                 |
    +-------+-----------------------------+-------------------------+
    |TW     |Two Weapon                   |Any combination of two of|
    |       |                             |above-mentioned single-  |
    |       |                             |handed weapons (a shield |
    |       |                             |is not a weapon).        |
    +-------+-----------------------------+-------------------------+
    |CA     |Combat Archery               |Bows and golf tube arrows|
    +-------+-----------------------------+-------------------------+
    


    Society Rules of the List and Conventions of Combat

    This section contains the Society Rules of the List/Conventions of Combat published in the 1989 revision of The Marshal's Handbook. The Middle Kingdom has the right to make more stringent rules if it so desires.

    Marshals should be very clear that the Rules of the List and Conventions of Combat of the S.C.A., Inc., are binding on all persons who wish to participate in combat-related activities in the Middle Kingdom.

    Rules of the List of the S.C.A., Inc.

    The rule itself is in boldface. The plain text under the rules (if any) are the applications of the rule by the Society Marshal and the Earl Marshal of the Middle Kingdom (not all rules have such applications).

    1. Each fighter, recognizing the possibilities of physical injury to himself or herself in such combat, shall assume unto himself or herself all risk and liability for harm suffered by means of such combat. Other participants shall likewise recognize the risks involved in their presence on or near the field of combat, and shall assume unto themselves the liabilities thereof.

      Society Marshal:

      "Other participants" include Marshals, and also support personnel whose activities bring them close to fighting in a situation where boundaries are not clearly defined. Heralds, Lists Pages, and similar officers who leave the field entirely before combat begins are exempt from this requirement, as are Water-Bearers and Chirurgeons who remain in fixed support points outside the tournament field or battle area. Water-Bearers and Chirurgeons who take part in mobile support groups within the overall boundaries of a battle area must receive a basic orientation in field safety, and sign the Combat-Related Activities Waiver.

    2. No person shall participate in Combat-Related Activities (including armored combat, period fencing, combat archery, marshalling, scouting, and banner-bearing in combat) unless and until he or she shall have been properly authorized under Society and kingdom procedures, and shall have signed the appropriate waiver. In witness thereof, the participant shall have and be prepared to present a valid Authorization Card to the Sovereign or his or her representative.

      Society Marshal:

      The Crown and/or Marshallate of each kingdom shall establish standards and procedures for the authorization of fighters to participate in combat. At minimum, these procedures should assure that the individual has read the Rules of the Lists, is familiar with the conventions and rules of the kingdom and the S.C.A., and has been observed in combat by a member of the Marshallate who can determine that he is not an exception safety hazard to himself or to others. At kingdom option, these procedures may involve either a general authorization to participate in armored combat or a set of separate authorization procedures for the use of (or for combat AGAINST) specific weapons or classes of weapons.

      The Crown and/or Marshallate of each kingdom shall establish standards and procedures for the authorization of combat archers and missile users as may be deemed necessary. Kingdoms may establish such additional limitations on the participation of minors as may be deemed necessary.

      It is usual for authorizations from other kingdoms to be accepted, although exceptions may prove necessary in the case of specific individuals.

      Comments by Middle Kingdom Earl Marshal on Rules 1 and 2:

      These are waiver rules. The Knight Marshal's responsibility is to insure that no one fights, officiates, or participates in active sports on the field without having present an authorization card or having turned in a properly completed waiver. If the area has a list officer, s/he should attend to enforcing these rules, but the ultimate responsibility remains the Marshal-in-Charge's. A fighter who takes the field without presenting an authorization card may be banned from the field for the remainder of the event if the deficiency is discovered before s/he rectifies it. A person who has not satisfied this requirement must not even walk across the field where an activity which requires a waiver is going on.

    3. All combatants must be presented to, and be acceptable to, the Sovereign or his or her representative.

    4. All Combatants shall adhere to the appropriate Armor and Weapons Standards of the Society, and to any additional standards of the kingdom in which the event takes place. The Sovereign may waive the additional kingdom standards.

      Society Marshal:

      Kingdoms may apply armor and weapons standards which are stricter than the Society standards, should they be deemed necessary, but may not reduce or waive any Society standard.

    5. The Sovereign or the Marshallate may bar any weapon or armor from use about the field of combat. Should a warranted Marshal bar any weapon or armor, an appeal may be made to the Sovereign to allow the weapon or armor.

      Society Marshal:

      If a fighter regards an opponent's weapon or armor as unduly dangerous to face, he or she can request the Marshal of the field to reinspect the item. Either fighter has the option of appealing the decision of the reinspecting Marshal to the Marshal in Charge and ultimately to the Sovereign.

      Middle Kingdom Earl Marshal:

      "The Sovereign or the Marshallate can bar any weapon or armor from use." Any weapon that appears to be unsafe, no matter how it is constructed, should either be banned from use or have its use placed under strictures. Non-standard types of weapons, (flails, etc.), may only be approved by the Sovereign or Earl Marshal. The same applies to weapons constructed of unorthodox materials.

    6. Combatants shall behave in a knightly and chivalrous manner, and shall fight according to the appropriate Society and Kingdom Conventions of Combat.

      Society Marshal:

      Engaging in any Society combat activity with the deliberate intent to inflict injury to an opponent is strictly forbidden.

      Middle Kingdom Earl Marshal:

      "...behave in a Knightly and Chivalrous manner." This is the basic sportsmanship rule for tourney combat. A fighter should never intentionally take advantage of an opponent's accidental disability, such as slipping, adjusting a helm, etc. A Knight does not strike the helpless, nor does he seek to harm his/her opponent intentionally. A Chivalrous person does not behave in such a manner that his/her honor could be called into question. A fighter should never lose his/her temper in combat, and should be honorable and courteous to all, both on and off the field. This Rule underlies many of the Conventions of Combat of the Middle Kingdom.

    7. No one may be required to participate in Combat-Related Activities. Any combatant may, without dishonor or penalty, reject any challenge without specifying a reason. A fight in a tournament lists is not to be considered a challenge, and therefore may not be declined or rejected without forfeiting the bout.

      Society Marshal:

      No one is required to fight in a tournament should he or she prefer not do so.

      Middle Kingdom Earl Marshal:

      This rule means that no one is forced to accept a CHALLENGE if he does not wish to fight. If the reason for the refusal is the opponent's choice of weapons, the fight may be forfeited or other mutually acceptable weapons chosen. If the fighter refuses to fight a particular person, the fight may be forfeited but the reason must be quickly determined, especially if many fighters refuse to fight a specific individual. The right to refuse a fight does not extend to the Crown Tourney or other regular tournament elimination fights because these are not CHALLENGES; one may only request a different opponent, and only for good and sufficient reason. It should be stressed that there is no dishonor in yielding a field or forfeiting a fight.

    8. Fighting with real weapons, whether fast or slow, is strictly forbidden at any Society event. This rule does not consider approved weaponry which meets the Society or kingdom standards for traditional Society combat and/or period Society rapier combat, used in the context of mutual sport, to be real weaponry.

      Society Marshal:

      Since fighting with real weapons is forbidden at any Society event, threatening the use of such weapons is likewise expressly forbidden.

      At the discretion of the Sovereign and the Marshal in Charge, recognized experts may be permitted to present choreographed demonstrations with real weapons under strictly controlled conditions.

      Posing for still photographs with real weapons is permitted.

      No one may wear any real weapon onto the field while participating in combat or present during combat. At the discretion of the Sovereign and the Marshal in Charge, an exception may be made for marshals and other non-combatants to wear knives bonded with peace straps.

    9. No projectile weapons shall be allowed and no weapons shall be thrown within the Lists of a tournament. The use of approved projectile weapons for melee, war, or Combat Archery shall conform to the appropriate Society and Kingdom Conventions of Combat.

      Society Marshal:

      The prohibition on thrown weapons refers to weapons in combat, or thrown in a hostile manner. It does not apply to "tossing" as a gentle, short-range method of transferring or removing a tournament weapon or item of equipment from the Lists or area of combat. The use of archery, firearms, slings, javelins, throwing axes, throwing knives, or any other projectile is forbidden within Tournament Lists, or in any other situation where spectators can not be separated from the potential line of fire by more than the effective range of the weapons. Conventions of Combat of the S.C.A., Inc.

    Conventions of Combat of the S.C.A., Inc.

    The following material is taken in its entirety from the Society Marshal's book, The Marshal's Handbook.

    All traditional SCA Armored Combat at SCA Tourneys, wars, and other events shall be conducted in accordance with the Rules of the Lists of the SCA, Inc., these Conventions of Combat, and such weapons, equipment, and event rules as are established by the Marshallate of the SCA, Inc., and individual Kingdom marshallates.

    I. General Information
    A. All Kingdoms shall have as their minimum Armor and Weapons standards those criteria established as Society minimum Armor and Weapons standards. Additional, more extensive, and more strict standards may be put into place by each Kingdom.
    1. All fighters, prior to combat at each and every SCA event, shall insure that their Armor and Weapons are inspected by a warranted member of the Kingdom Marshallate.

    2. Even though a warranted member of the Kingdom Marshallate has inspected the Armor and Weapons used by a fighter, each fighter accepts full responsibility for the condition of his or her own equipment, and has the obligation to himself or herself, the marshal, and all opponents to see that his or her equipment meets all Society and Kingdom requirements.
    B. When not otherwise directed by the Crown, the Crown's representative upon the field in all matters dealing with Society Combat is the Earl Marshal, and, by delegation, members of the Kingdom Marshallate.
    II. Behavior on the Field
    A. All fighters shall obey the commands of the marshals on the field, or shall be removed from the field and subject to disciplinary action.
    1. Disagreements with the marshals on the field shall be resolved through the established mechanisms outlined in the Marshallate Procedures of the SCA. Inc.
    B. Each fighter shall maintain control over his or her temper at all times.

    C. Striking an opponent with excessive force is forbidden.

    D. Upon hearing the call of "HOLD" all fighting shall immediately stop.

    E. Any behavior that takes deliberate advantage of an opponent's chivalry or safety-consciousness, or that takes deliberate unfair advantage of an opponent, is prohibited.
    1. A fighter shall not deliberately strike a helpless opponent.

    2. Any fighter who obtains an unfair advantage by repeatedly becoming "helpless" (e.g. by falling down or losing his or her weapons) may, after being duly warned by the marshals on the field, be forced to yield the fight at the next occurrence of such behavior. The onus of this is on the marshals, not on the opponent. However, the opponent may ask the marshals to let the fight continue.
    III. The Use of Weapons and Shields
    A. Weapons shall be used in accordance with their design (i.e. spears may only be used for thrusting, axes for striking along the edge of the blades, etc).
    1. Only weapons approved for thrusting may be used for that purpose. Feinting as if to thrust with a weapon not approved for that purpose is not permitted. Before any bout where a thrusting weapon is used the opponent and marshals shall be informed that such a weapon is on the field, and the thrusting tip shall be shown to the opponent.

    2. A weapon wielded with two hands and having a grip of more than 18" (45 cm) long shall not be power-swung through an arc of more than 90 degrees. Moving such a weapon more than 90 degrees for defense or positioning prior to attack shall not be construed to be in violation of this rule, so long as the weapon is not power-swung and does not strike with excessive force.

    3. The blade of a weapon may not be grasped at any time, nor may it be trapped in contact with the fighter's body as a means of preventing the opponent's use of the weapon. Neither may the blade of a fighter's own weapon be grasped to enhance the block.
    B. The striking surface of a weapon in motion may not be grasped or blocked by the hands or limbs as a means of impeding the blow. Inadvertently bringing the hands in contact with the striking surface of such a weapon when attempting to block a blow with another weapon shall not be considered to be in violation of this convention.

    C. Blows repeatedly blocked by a weapon in contact with a fighter's helm, body, or shield at the moment of impact may, at the Crown's or Marshal's discretion, be considered to have broken the blocking weapon. This will force a fighter to forfeit the fight, unless a secondary weapon is carried or the opponent chooses to allow the fighter to rearm with another weapon.

    D. A shield may be used to displace, deflect, or immobilize an opponent's shield or weapon, so long as such use does not endanger the safety of the combatants. Deliberately striking an opponent's head, limbs, or body with the shield is forbidden, unless that shield is designed to be used as a weapon, and is approved by the Kingdom Marshallate. Shields designed to be used as a weapon, and approved by the Kingdom Marshallate, shall be considered a mass weapon.
    IV. Acknowledgement of Blows
    A. In judging the effect of blows, all fighters are presumed to be fully armored. Special tournaments or combats may be held which may re-define what areas of the body are armored, and to what extent, as long as all the participants are made aware of the special conditions prior to the start of combat.
    1. All "fully armored" fighters are presumed to be wearing hauberk over a padded gambeson, with boiled leather arm and leg defenses and an open-faced iron helm with a nasal. The helm may be presumed by kingdom convention to include a very light chain mail drape, permitting vision and resisting cuts by the mere touch of a bladed weapon.
    a. Under this standard, an acceptable blow to the face would be lighter than to other portions of the head or body. Areas deemed illegal for attack (the wrists from 1" above the hands, from 1" above the knees and below) shall be considered safe from all attack.
    B. Blows must be delivered with effective technique for the particular type of weapon used, and must strike properly oriented and with sufficient force, to be considered an effective, or good, blow.
    1. An effective blow to the head, neck, or torso shall be judged fatal or totally disabling, rendering the fighter incapable of further combat.

    2. An effective blow from an axe, mace, pole arm, greatsword, or other mass weapon which lands on the hip above the hip socket, or strikes the shoulder inside the shoulder socket, shall be judged fatal or totally disabling.

    3. An effective blow to the arm above the wrist will disable the arm. The arm shall then be considered useless to the fighter, and may not be used for either offense or defense.

    4. An effective blow to the leg above the knee will disable the leg. The fighter must then fight kneeling, sitting, or standing only upon the foot of the unstruck leg.
    a. Kingdoms may put limitations upon the mobility of such injured fighters.
    5. If a wounded limb blocks an otherwise acceptable blow, the blow shall be counted as though the limb were not there.

    6. Kingdoms may institute a "bleed rule" that would render a fighter who has suffered an effective wound to a limb incapable of further combat after a specified time.
    C. All fighters are expected to take into account the nature of the weapon being used by their opponent and the location of the point of impact of that weapon when judging the outcome of a blow delivered. Fighters are also expected to take into account the timing of the blow and the collision of the weapon with any object other than the fighter's presumed armor.
    1. The fact that a blow struck a shield or another weapon before striking the combatant may be a reason why the blow was not effective. However, a blow which strikes with sufficient force and properly oriented shall be considered effective, regardless of what it hit prior to striking the combatant.
    D. Sometimes a blow which would normally be accepted occurs at almost the same moment as an event which would cause the fight to be stopped (a "HOLD" being called, the fighter throwing the blow being killed, etc.). If the blow was begun before the occurrence of the event which would cause the bout to be halted, it shall be deemed a legal blow, and acceptable if of sufficient force and not blocked or deflected. If the blow was begun after the occurrence of the event which would cause the bout to be halted, it shall be deemed not legal, and need not be accepted.

    E. A blow that includes the dropping of a weapon at the moment of impact need not be counted.


    Additional Rules of the List for the Middle Kingdom

    The following additional Rules of the List constitute those rules and portions of rules which have been traditionally followed in the Middle Kingdom that are extensions of the Rules of the List of the S.C.A., Inc. These rules have the same force within the Middle Kingdom as the Society Rules of the List, but they may not be adhered to in other kingdoms. In some cases the Middle Kingdom rules cover material that is covered in the Society Conventions of Combat, but those have been retained here.

    1. No combatant may be less than 18 (eighteen) years old.

    2. Fighters are expected to behave as though the weapons used in combat are real, and "injuries" sustained will be judged accordingly. In judging "injuries" all fighters are presumed to be fully armored unless otherwise stated.

      This is the basic rule of realism. "Fully armored" is interpreted to mean light riveted mail over a gambeson and a closed IRON helm (some other kingdoms specify open-faced to justify certain techniques not used in the MidRealm) regardless of the ACTUAL armor worn by the fighter. Illustrations from the period when this was the actual type of armor used indicate that it could be penetrated by a solid, unimpeded, one-handed blow with the broadsword. "Behaving as if the weapons were real" means that a blow, to be counted, must be forceful and unimpeded in order to have penetrated the armor being worn. This also means that the nature of the weapon used must be taken into consideration; for example, blows with the very tip or flat of the sword are ignored; only blows with the cutting edge of an axe count, etc.

      "Fully armored unless otherwise stated" allows for demonstration fights using specific weapon and armor combinations. "Injuries sustained" is the reason for fighting on one's knees, or on one leg, if struck on the leg, etc. The marshal observing a fight should insure that this is being followed accurately: that the leg with the knee on the ground is the one that was struck, that the "missing" arm is not used intentionally to block a blow, etc.; and s/he will make reminders, if necessary, of the injury that the fighter has sustained.

      If a blow is blocked, (as happens reflexively sometimes), by a "missing" arm, the blow may be counted as unimpeded; especially if the fighter has been previously warned about such action. If a blow lands on the hip or buttock, the fighter must sit rather than kneel. Marshals should also take into account the type of weapon here: Blows to the hip struck with two-handed weapons being wielded two-handed are deemed killing blows. This includes Bastard and Greatsword, axe, mace, and all Polearms, (except spears), in two-handed use. Also, blows to the hip struck with mass weapons, (either one-handed OR two-handed), are deemed killing blows. These include axe, mace, and war-hammer.

    3. Each contestant fighting in the lists for the Crown shall have a prospective consort to receive the Consort's Crown should s/he be successful in combat, though the name need not be revealed (except to the Crown and the Kingdom Seneschal for membership verification) until the crown is secure.

      "Fighters for the Crown must have a Lord or Lady". Marshals are not responsible for enforcing this rule, except for observing it themselves.

    4. The head, face, and neck shall be protected from injury. See "Equipment Standards" in the section on equipment inspection.

    5. Any combatant may, without dishonor or penalty, reject the use of a particular weapon by his opponent, should s/he deem the weapon unusually dangerous.

    6. Any weapons mutually acceptable to the combatants in a fight may be used on the field of battle subject to the approval of the Sovereign or his/her representative; when the combatants mutually desire to use any weapon previously barred by the Sovereign or his representative, they may present their cause to the Sovereign. The Sovereign shall, after receiving the advice of his representative, pass judgement upon the use of the barred weapon for a particular fight.

      "Weapons mutually acceptable to the combatants". This is the rule that allows for demonstration fights with new types and designs of weapons. It allows weapons of non-standard types, of unusual behavior, or which give an advantage to the user, to be used under strictures. The consent of the combatants can be obtained by asking each time the weapon is to be used, or by demonstrating it to all fighters present at an event and getting their collective consent at the beginning of the event; this rule also allows the Earl Marshal to modify the interpretation of other rules for specific fights or events. This is the appeals procedure for weapons rejected by the marshallate. The King has the final decision with the advice of the Earl Marshal.

    7. No tournament weapons shall be made of metal and no metal shall be drawn in an offensive manner on the field at any Society event.

      "No metal weapons." This does not prohibit hand guards or pommel weights on tourney weapons. Guards and pommels, however, shall have no protruding points or sharp edges which could cause injury, and no metal may be included on the striking surface. No combatant shall wear any real weapon into combat, and marshals are advised to leave swords and other major weapons off the field when on duty. This Rule prohibits fighting with real weapons, whether fast or slow, demonstration or real, at any SCA event.

    8. A shield may not be used as a weapon, unless approved by the Sovereign or by the Sovereign's representative.

      This does not prohibit the use of the shield to displace, immobilize, or deflect the opponent's shield or weapon, nor to oppose or deflect the opponent's motion, so long as the shield does not strike the opponent's body or limbs. However, control over shield technique is the responsibility of the user, and any combatant who consistently strikes the opponent's body or limbs, intentionally or not, may be banned from further use of offensive shield technique until such time as s/he can demonstrate proficiency at the technique. Shields intended to be used as weapons must be approved either by the King or the EM. See the sections on Marshalling fights and on Enforcing the Rules of the List.

    9. There shall be no thrusting, except with weapons specifically designed for thrusting, subject to the provisions of Middle Kingdom Rule #5. Thrusts to the face with any weapon are prohibited.

      This rule means that ALL thrusting weapons must be approved by a marshal. This rule also prohibits thrusting with weapons that have not been designed and approved for that use. This rule does not prohibit a hit to the face by a projectile weapon such as an arrow or javelin.

    10. A bladed weapon may not be grasped as a means of stopping a blow.

      "Bladed weapons cannot be grasped to stop a blow." This refers not only to grasping or blocking with the hand, but also to trapping the blade in contact with any part of the body -- for example, between the arm and side. However, catching a blade between one's shield and the ground or some other inanimate object is not prohibited; nor is a blade considered grasped if it becomes entangled behind one's shield, provided that no effort is made to keep it there, such as clamping the elbow against the side to hold the weapon. On the other hand, it is legal to grasp the shafts of maces, spears, and pole arms.

    11. If a weapon is broken or dropped on the field, the combat shall stop while the fighter is rearmed. If a fighter slips, the combat shall stop until he is recovered. This rule applies only to tournaments. In melees with more than 10 persons per side a dropped or broken weapon does not stop combat; the person who has dropped or broken a weapon may continue to participate only if the loss of the weapon does not cause that person's armor to violate armor standards (such as lack of hand protection).

      When a combatant drops or breaks a weapon, the combat stops, and the blow which involved the dropping or breaking is not counted. However, a weapon clearly broken on the opponent in a well-delivered blow is counted good. Blows started by a fighter before his opponent drops or breaks a weapon or shouts HOLD are counted as good. The same principle is applied when a combatant slips or stumbles.

      The Sovereign or his/her representative may impose the tournament standard on melees with fewer than 10 persons per side.

    12. No projectile weapons shall be allowed, and no weapons shall be thrown, within the lists of a tourney. All other uses of such weapons are subject to the provisions of Rule #9.

      This rule bans projectile weapons (sling-stones, arrows, etc.), throwable weapons (javelins, axes), and the intentional throwing of weapons of any nature from a tourney list. This rule does not prohibet use of such weapons in a melee.


    Middle Kingdom Combat Conventions

    THE USE OF EXCESSIVE FORCE IS PROHIBITED

    No fighter may deliberately strike at or below the knee or wrist (these joints being defined as starting one inch above the bend.) Any blows to those areas are not to be counted. No fighter may deliberately cause an opponent to strike these areas in order to avoid loss of a limb. Any fighter who does so (for example, lifting a leg) may lose the limb in question.

    Fighters may not grapple with their opponents, nor may they kick or grasp an opponent or their opponent's shield. "Grasp" is defined as held securely with a closed hand for any length of time.

    Blows which are solidly blocked by the shield or blocking weapon before, or simultaneous with, striking the opponent need not be counted.

    No thrusts or thrusting feints to the face or throat with any weapon will be allowed.

    Fighters must acknowledge blows according to the standards of the Middle Kingdom despite the actual armor worn. This includes armor that is ill-fitting or tabards and auxiliary weapons that may entangle legitimate blows. Marshals may require fighters to remove the offending weapons or clothes and/ or accept the marshal's decision of the effect of blows delivered to it.

    THE ARMOR STANDARD:

    Light riveted mail over a gambeson and a closed iron helm.

    A blow which includes the releasing or breaking of a weapon is not to be counted unless, in the opinion of the marshal, a properly constructed and maintained weapon was clearly broken on the body of the fighter being hit, without any other contact.

    A blow begun BEFORE the occurrence of an event that would stop the fight (such as a hold or a fighter dropping their weapon) will be counted if it lands on the opponent. If the blow is begun after such an event, it will not be counted.

    A helpless opponent is not struck. Examples of a helpless opponent may include: someone who has lost their balance, someone who is lying on the ground, someone in the process of getting off the ground. An opponent who is empty-handed (unarmed) is not necessarily helpless. A fighter in the act of acknowledging the effects of an earlier blow is not considered helpless, (i.e. a fighter dropping to his knee after receiving a leg shot is not immune from being struck in the head as he is dropping).

    A fighter who makes himself "helpless" by repeatedly overrunning the borders of the list or falling over while on their knees may, at the discretion of the marshals and the opponent, be deemed to have been defeated.

    A blow to a limb does not stop the progress of combat and may be followed instantly by any legal blow.

    When a fighter is struck by a killing blow but has already begun a blow that is killing to their opponent, both are considered good. This results in a "Double-Kill" in which both fighters are defeated. In tourney combat, double-kills are generally refought. In wars and melees, both are defeated.

    Any mass or two-handed weapon that strikes the hip is scored as a kill. A two-handed THRUST (i.e. a spear) to the hip is NOT scored as a kill.

    If a weapon is broken on the field, it may only be replaced with a weapon of the same type, or by a worn auxiliary weapon. An auxiliary weapon that interferes with a fighter's ability to feel blows must be removed and given into the keeping of the marshal until it is needed. If a weapon is deliberately discarded in favor of an auxiliary weapon during a fight, the fighter is allowed to resume the use of the discarded weapon if they can retrieve it during the course of the fight. A fighter attempting to retrieve such a discarded weapon during combat, while still armed, is considered "engaged". Likewise, a fighter using two weapons who drops or discards one is still engaged. A hold is ONLY called if there is a clear danger caused by the dropped weapon.

    A sufficiently hard blow struck with the end (tip) of the sword should be acknowledged as effective unless the blow could not have penetrated the body deeply enough (at least one inch) to disable or kill.

    A weapon may not be braced against a helm or shield to block blows.

    No one may deliberately strike a person with the ineffective part of any weapon.

    A blow which is intentionally blocked with a wounded limb is scored as if the limb were not there.

    A fighter who is attempting to keep a wounded limb out of the line of combat and has that limb struck, suffers no additional penalty.

    No mention of religion, magic, superstition, or of supernatural powers in connection with combat is permitted. This does not prevent a proper respect for love, respect, or the loyalty of a fighter for a lord or lady, nor any battle cry of the period before 1600.

    A call of "HOLD!" stops all fighting until the marshal commands combat to continue.

    No kendo, karate, or other martial art shall be allowed in the lists or anywhere in the Kingdom or wherever the SCA may be held responsible for their supervision, without special permission from the Earl Marshal in writing. Boffing and other such sports must also be properly supervised and require waivers if these sports are a planned part of an official event.

    The interpretations of the Rules of the List and Conventions of Combat may be modified for special events by obtaining advance written consent from the EM. At ordinary tourneys, the Marshal-in-Charge may with the knowledge and consent of the other fighters, enact such sanctioned modifications as are desired.


    Melee Conventions

    THE USE OF EXCESSIVE FORCE IS PROHIBITED

    Participants in a melee situation must recognize the possibility of being attacked by any number of opponents and any combination of weapons and recognize as well the dangers of their own weapons and restrain themselves accordingly in the interests of Chivalry and safety.

    There may be no more than 4 attackers on 1 fighter.

    An opponent in a melee who is unaware of one's presence is not struck. However, it is the responsibility of the fighter under attack to prevent the fighters legitimately engaged with him from gaining an advantage in position. When attacking an already engaged opponent, a fighter should take specific action to notify him of his presence (e.g a light tap on the shield) and receive acknowledgement before making a serious attack. Fighters may foul the weapons of opponents they may not strike; in doing so they should show restraint in the interests of safety. Fouling does not include grappling, (as defined earlier), or reaching around an opponent.

    When two opposing lines engage face to face, all fighters in each line are considered engaged with those in the other until the situation changes significantly enough to mix the lines. (e.g. after a charge or sweep).

    A fighter or group of fighters who deliberately charge into a group of opponents may be struck from any angle by those opponents during a charge. Care should be exercised by both sides to acknowledge blows and avoid unfair blows.

    Fighters in melee killed or wounded by their teammates must acknowledge these blows in the normal manner.

    Dead fighters should die defensively by hiding under their shields or weapons and then leave the field as soon and as safely as possible at the marshal's direction. Dead fighters may neither hand weapons or shout advice to the living.

    Marshals and fighters alike should be aware of the dangers of melees in crowded situations where a great deal of pushing is likely, because proper acknowledgement of blows becomes difficult. Such situations should be avoided unless they can be very carefully marshalled.

    When "HOLD!" is called in melee, all fighters should drop to their knees and ground all great weapons until the marshals call "en garde". Holds in melees are not to be used to regroup or make plans. If a melee must be moved to the center of the field, the same relative positions must be maintained to preserve the tactical situation.

    When a fighter loses any required piece of armor in a melee, that fighter is considered dead and must leave the field. They may not take part in further combat until the situation that caused the armor to fail is remedied.


    SECTION III -- TRAINING


    How a Fighter Shall Be Trained

    A Commentary by Duke Syr Laurelen Darksbane

    If there is any one thing that can be said of fighting it is that training is never completed. As long as an individual participates as a fighter, he/she is in training. This is true for all of us, from the newest novice to the battle-hardened Knights. We all continue training, honing skills, learning, throughout our lifetimes as fighters.

    There are two reasons that the preceding statement is true. The first is, of course, that training increases our skill and prowess. The second is more important. It is that, as we learn, we pass on the knowledge and skill. We teach each other.

    The face of SCA combat, the techniques and the technology, are continually changing. It is an endeavor characterized by the contributions of its participants. This applies to pure fighting skill, to armor (which is a far cry from the Freon cans and fencing gear of A.S. II), and to the type of training one must receive when one begins to fight (as well as the continued training so necessary to keep skills sharp).

    There are many schools of thought concerning training for SCA combat. I offer the following as a view of my personal beliefs. It is therefore not so much a guideline as it is a description of one "school." It is offered with the hope that the written word can describe a framework upon which others might build to help fighters through the years.

    The first thing the new novice WANTS to do is pick up a sword and FIGHT. The first thing the new novice SHOULD do is pick up the Rules of the List and the MidRealm Fighting Conventions and READ. The Middle Kingdom Knight Marshal's Handbook is the perfect device for communicating standard information on rules, regulations, and conventions. New fighters should be given the opportunity to read it, and the local marshallate should be prepared to explain just what it is that we're doing out there.

    The novice must be given a thorough grounding in the ideals which lie at the root of SCA combat and, actually, at the very core of the Society's existence. We seek to foster skill as an extension of courtesy, honor, and chivalry. Fighting prowess develops an individual physically, but it should, above all, be based on the ideals which founded the SCA. This is the first and most important lesson to be taught to a novice fighter.

    Once these amenities are taken care of, the novice must attend to the details. This means thinking about acquiring his/her own set of armor. It is true that most novices begin their training in borrowed gear. There is nothing wrong with this, as long as it fits and as long as the novice has taken steps towards assembling his/her own. The trainers should do all they can to insure that the novice is safe in borrowed gear as well as in his/her own new equipment. Help from experienced fighters and armorers is the most important thing at this stage.

    Armor protects us. The new novice should be taught elementary lessons in arms and armor, what the pieces are called and where they're worn, and why. This should occur while they are in training. The novice must have explanations of the target areas, blow discrimination, and fighting etiquette we adhere to. The new fighter should be taught that no one should ever go into combat without some sort of warm-up, stretching-out, etc. Pulled and torn muscles are not fun. Experienced fighters should be reminded of this as well.

    The training program follows a simple series of steps; Explanation, Shield work, Sword and Shield work, Sparring, Full Fighting, Authorization. The sequence begins with the introductory explanations previously outlined and continues into the phases where the armored novice faces his/her trainer. This where the novice is first "hit" and should come to realize that, as long as he/she is armored correctly and keeps his/her wits, getting hurt is unlikely.

    SHIELD WORK: has to be the first and most important phase since an instinctive defense will later serve a fighter very well in combat. It generally follows this sort of scenario: The armored novice squares off with shield but without a weapon against the trainer. The trainer will deliver blows (the basics, at first, of course) to the novice. The trainer will adjust the stance, motion, and reactions of the novice. The trainer starts at slower speeds so the novice can see and understand what's happening around his/her body. The novice will learn to move the shield (whatever type it is:round,targe, heater, etc.) to block the blows and, as the novice builds strength and speed, so too should the trainer.

    Trainers should NEVER think of the novice as a "pell" or as someone against whom to "try new tricks." This is embarrassing and discouraging. The novice must have confidence built by the trainer. Good trainers don't boost their own egos at the expense of novices.

    The Shield work continues to the point where the novice can handle most of what he/she encounters. For some this only takes a few weeks, for others, several months. Everyone is different. The novice must learn to let the shield do the work (which only happens, by the way, with correctly built and maintained equipment). The fighter should block and keep protected, ideally, without having to think about it. Once the novice is reasonably proficient at this and feels that he/she can certainly defend against any half dozen Chivalry, then he/she should begin the next step in training.

    SWORD AND SHIELD WORK: incorporates a new "thing" (the sword) into the physical construction of a new novice fighter. This will be confusing at first. It might make the novice feel, and behave, as if he/she were starting over again. This is, of course, very close to the truth. The novice's lament is that now he/she has to defend and MOVE at the same time. The task is to build the necessary coordination.

    The novice is taught the basic blows. This is where the trainer gets to be a convenient "pell." The novice repeats blows, first slowly so as to learn the motions involved, then more quickly to develop accuracy, and finally at full speed to develop agility. The trainer should watch the novice's body closely. The shield shouldn't drop when a blow is thrown, and the blows should be accurate and of sufficient force.

    The trainer must, at this point, be fully armed and armored. The trainer will not yet return blows to the novice but will block once the novice starts to attack correctly. Though the trainer must allow the novice to hit him during the course of training, no one wants to (or should) take continual pounding. The novice must learn what a blocked blow feels like, as well as what a good blow feels like when it lands.

    The novice must be taught the necessity of multiple blow attacks. Simple combinations of motion build into a controlled offense that is very effective. When the trainer has satisfied himself that the novice can move a sword without dropping the shield, falling out of a good stance, or losing control of the weapon, it is time to try the next step in training.

    It must be stressed here that once a novice holds a weapon he/she should be fully armored (with shield) and so should the trainer. There are certain instances of explanation of stance and position where a novice and trainer must be able to see clearly to understand and so must be, for the moment, helmless.These are rare instances, and care should be taken whenever either fighter is not fully armored. Nobody can predict all motions that might occur in training, so once the novice has a weapon, both he/she and the trainer are expected to behave as if on the field.

    Once the trainer decides that SPARRING is in order, yet another new dimension is added to the novice's experience. He/she now has to contend not only with his own motion but with that of the trainer as well. The trainer takes on a new identity at this stage, for it is the first COMBAT the novice experiences. The trainer, or a fighter the trainer uses to face the novice, becomes an opponent.

    SPARRING: is continual fighting which is conducted slowly at first, gradually building to full speed later. The novice and the trainer will attack and defend and tell each other the results while fighting. They will call out the good blows, glances, light, etc. The novice at this stage begins to develop a sense of perception which will keep him/her safe and will enable quick response to the actions on the field, whether that response is "death" or watching the opponent fall.

    Light Sparring is conducted at less than full speed and is relaxed and instructive. It is an excellent warm-up, even for experienced fighters. Full Speed Sparring is "real fighting" except that no one falls. It is characterized by continual conversation between the fighters. When explanations are required, HOLD must be called. Novices should be taught to remain defensive until it is obvious that the opponent has ceased fighting. More importantly, the novice should, long ago, have learned that the HOLD stops the action dead.

    The novice has now developed into a fighter. It has likely been some months since the novice began training. New confidence has been built and the novice now looks toward "authorization." The Sparring phase of training really blends into the Full Fighting stage since Sparring really IS just a modified and more controlled type of Full Fighting.

    FULL FIGHTING: is the stage where the novice faces experienced fighters and perhaps other equally advanced novices in open single combat. This stage requires the full attention of the trainer whether he is the novice's opponent or not, so that any problems can be corrected and the novice can continue developing skill. The trainer should pay particular attention to the novice's posture and demeanor on the field. Winning fights isn't as important as staying alert and defensive without panic. The trainer must insure that the novice is able to withstand the pressure of combat. Control of the weapon and shield must be maintained, attacks must be positive and accurate (on target areas), even if blocked. Defensive moves must be made, even if they aren't fast enough to stop the blow. Speed and agility come with time and experience, but the attempts must be made without hesitation.

    When the trainer is satisfied that the novice is safe and competent to enter combat, it is time for the novice to go to an official SCA tourney and attempt to authorize. With a little care and concern on the trainer's part, and a little attention on the novice's part the MidRealm should gain a new fighter who has passed through the final phase into AUTHORIZATION.

    This overview of one training method as an ordered sequence is very general at best. There are many things that might be added in certain stages. The incorporation of sword-blocking techniques, opposite-handed opponents, and exposure to several shield styles, are examples of variations that may be introduced at any time. There are several additional "styles," however, in which the novice should be given training before ever attempting to authorize. Single-sword, one-handed, is the first. This must be used if the fighter "loses" either arm in combat. The ability to use the sword alone in a safe manner is very important. The ability to win a fight when so disadvantaged will come with experience, but the ability to be safe must be instilled from the start.

    Fighting from the knees and fighting against a similarly "wounded" (down) opponent are equally important. New fighters should be taught not to grapple with their opponents and the courtesy of not continually circling a "down" opponent.

    Finally, a new fighter should be exposed to fighting against non-Sword and Shield opponents. This is for familiarity and safety. The new fighter should learn how to behave against Thrusting Weapons, Two-Weapon styles, as well as the other weapons styles used in the Middle Kingdom.

    These stages of training as a sequence apply also to the advanced weapons styles. The object is always the same: to develop prowess by learning to defend oneself in order that a successful offense may be employed. The responsibility is again with the trainer to insure safety as well as prowess in the advanced forms.

    New fighters should have the opportunity to train in melees while gaining experience in single combat.Melees are fun, but the environment is vastly different from single combat. New fighters should be exposed to melee in order to enhance the development of that sense of perception mentioned earlier in this essay. In melee, like single combat, there is nothing more important than being aware of what's happening around one's self. This lesson will allow the fighters to stay safe by being taught to pay attention and to be careful for themselves and for the others all around. New fighters should be discouraged from trying to authorize at the "deadline" to fight at the Pennsic War without getting melee experience prior to the War. It could be a harrowing, if not dangerous, experience, which no marshal should allow. All the things that go into making a fighter can not be covered in a short article. The basic tenets are very simple, however. If the individual desires the discipline of a martial art, the exhilaration of competition, or sheer fun, SCA combat holds all these things. Its basis is safety and its object is enjoyment. These are easily accomplished with the continual training which occurs throughout the active fighter's life.

    In this way we assure that we may always learn from each other peacefully.


    The Last Word - One Fighter's Philosophy

    It was previously stated that SCA combat has many aspects. It is practiced as a martial art, a sport, a good time, and even as "occasional exercise." That it holds many things for many people is borne out by the very diversity of the individuals who take up the sword. Men and women of all physical description and demeanor participate as authorized fighters. This one endeavor in the SCA provides an activity for these people to practice together and a common interest for folk who might never otherwise have come to know each other, even within the SCA. It offers, at the least, like the SCA itself, a place for people to meet and an opportunity for folk to come to see a little of each other's true identity. It is single combat that forces individuals, for a short time, to lay aside titles, external influences, and pretense in order that their physical skill and the depth of their conscience may be displayed.

    The intimacy between fighters, the camaraderie and friendships that grow between people who show their mettle as honorable and courteous, as gentle and noble souls, is both satisfying and somewhat mysterious. No other endeavor is at once so exclusively competitive and so inclusively familial as SCA combat. It is the basis for the Feudal framework of the Society, and it is the forum through which many of us open ourselves for judgement. Not judgments of fighting skill, but rather to the judgments of our character made by observers and opponents alike. When we fight we open ourselves to intimate inspection. Opinions of the contents of our hearts are based on our own instinctive reflexes on the field. We can't fake our demeanor if we don't accept the blow we should. It's plain to see, and so fighting in itself becomes a test of an individual in his or her OWN eyes. He or she must be equal to the task of saying, "Here is my physical skill; here is how I use it; here is how I behave; here is who I am." Most fighters don't necessarily think of combat in terms of these vague philosophical ideals, and that's really quite all right. However, everyone who fights and who watches fighting should think for a moment how very much an individual tells about himself in the way he or she accepts defeat OR victory. We become comrades in arms, certainly, as MidRealm fighters, but we also become friends and brothers and sisters, for we strive against each other and ourselves for joy and exhilaration; for mutual skill; to share something unique. Perhaps it's not so odd, after all, that a field of mortal combat is a place where deep and lasting friendships can be born. This is the lifeblood of our Society. We should all do our best to insure that the field of combat never, under any circumstances, sees the shedding of any blood, either our own or the Society's. I urge you to carry on with courtesy and honor and have a wonderful time, for the SCA is magic and, above all, fun.

    Duke Syr Laurelen Darksbane
    Baron Cleftlands
    Earl Marshal of the Middle Kingdom


    Marshal Training

    To become a fully warranted marshal, a fighter must go through a period of training as an MIT. Becoming an MIT first requires the fighter to contact his RDEM. The following is a list of requirements for an MIT to become fully warranted:

    1. Fighter must be authorized in three (3) weapon styles, (this includes S/SH), before becoming an MIT. Exceptions will be made on a case by case basis by the Earl Marshal.
    2. An MIT must work four (4) events, including inspections, authorizations and the tourney. Although the MIT may participate in the fighting if melees are held later. It is advised that one of these events be a training session with their RDEM.
    3. The MIT must complete a test administered by the RDEM after the above requirements are met. A certain score must be attained before the RDEM will recommend to the EM that the MIT be warranted.
    4. The RDEM will send the completed form, test, and recommendation to the EM; who will send the MIT his/her warrant.

    When training an MIT the warranted marshals should:

    1. Demonstrate an inspection, and then watch while the MIT performs one.
    2. Stand near the MIT during an authorization, ask them to give comments while the fighting is going on. Ask them what they are looking for, give hints on what the authorizee is doing correctly/incorrectly. Explain what marshals look for in an authorization, (i.e. some competence, how safe the fighter is, etc.).
    3. Teach basic skills of marshalling tourneys and melees.


    SECTION IV -- COMBAT ARCHERY & JAVELINS


    Combat Archery - Introduction

    Combat archery has been in use in this kingdom for several years. In this time we have tried several different conventions under various fighting scenarios. We have learned what we like about combat archery and which aspects we would like to see changed or discontinued. The purpose of this handbook on combat archery is to pull together all the rules, conventions and good ideas that have been established so far. The rules and conventions expressed in this handbook are in force at this time and will be the standards by which all of us in the kingdom agree to abide. Like any fighting rule or convention that is already on the books, the rules of this handbook are also subject to interpretation and clarification. The final decision to any disagreement or confusion that arises from these rules on combat archery will rest with the Earl Marshal and ultimately the Crown.

    Often times we find ourselves following or enforcing rules from the Marshal's office that, although we understand what the rule is and how to abide by it, we do not know why the rule is there in the first place. I will attempt to explain the reasoning behind some of the combat archery rules and conventions.

    The most popular concerns are why archers cannot throw javelins or hold rattan weapons while holding their bows, and why javelin throwers must have full gauntlets on their throwing hand. The reasoning behind these decisions lies with the basic concept that there are two discernable types of individuals on the field at one time; fighters and archers. Fighters are fully armored and assumed lethal to any foe who comes near. Archers are semi-armored and assumed lethal only when their bows have arrows in them.

    Because archers are in possession of a bow and an unarmored shooting hand, we encourage fighters that attack archers to be more safety conscious than when they attack other fighters. When a fighter charges an archer and the arrow has been fired and misses, the fighter knows that he is in no danger of being struck until the archer draws a weapon. The fighter has a responsibility not to strike the bow or unarmored hand of the archer. Archers, on the other hand, have the responsibility to keep the bow and hand out of harm's way until they are dead, captured, escape, or draw a rattan weapon and discard the bow safely. We do not allow Archers to hold rattan weapons and bow at the same time. The fighter must concentrate on not hitting the bow. It would be unfair as well as unsafe to allow an archer to attack a fighter with a rattan weapon while still holding a bow. This rule allows a greater margin of safety for archers and bows while they are being attacked by fighters, and at the same time eliminates the need for concern by fighters of being attacked by archers that are holding bows in their hand.

    As to why javelin throwers must have full gauntlets on their throwing hand, it is because javelins are reserved for use by fighters, and fighters are, by definition, fully armored combatants.

    An archer that drops their bow and picks up a weapon automatically becomes a fighter and is subject to full armor requirements. From the perspective of the fighter, any opponent that is not holding a bow in their hand can be safely assumed to be fully armored and can be attacked without needing to watch out for fragile bows or unarmored hands. For much this same reason, fighters may not swing rattan weapons while holding a javelin in their other hand. Since they would be swinging at their opponent, while their opponent would have to contend with avoiding hitting the plastic javelin, fighters must drop the javelin before engaging in hand to hand combat with an opponent.

    Another concern is why bows are not considered broken and removed from the battle if they are hit by arrows or javelins. The reason is much the same as allowing small bucklers or swords that are hit by greatswords or polearms to continue to be used undamaged and whole, blow after blow: we selectively recreate. One could assume that there is an unlimited supply of bows at a war, which in some wars there were wagon loads of arrows and bows brought with the army, and if yours was broken you simply went and picked up another. It is probably simpler to reason that we allow combatants to use their favorite weapon blow after blow, battle after battle, until they literally fall apart. It is more fun that way.

    Some have asked why, if javelins must hit with the force of a one-handed thrust, do we not require arrows to hit with the same minimum force? Although the force of an arrow from a 50 lb. hunting bow at close range hits like a rattan weapon, keep in mind that not all, nor many for that matter, archers use a heavy bow. Most use a 35 lb. bow, and although they hit smartly at close range, do not deliver a minimum one-handed thrust. If the distance is increased to anything resembling archery range, the force drops off to the point that a killing thrust would be impossible to deliver with any weight bow. To require killing thrust with arrows would mean that all archers would need to use 50 lb. bows and shoot targets at very close range. This would mean uncontested fire into the fighters on bridges, because the other archers were too far away to deliver a killing thrust to each other. While in the open field there would be few if any archers participating due to the ridiculously close range that the archers would have to allow the fighters to get, in order to hit them with sufficient force. And at this range, the archers would be trampled by the other 25 fighters that they did not kill. Both of these situations would soon be unacceptable and we would probably see the end of combat archery.

    If anyone has any new conventions, new combat archery weapons, or suggestions for rule changes, please feel free to send them to the Earl Marshal, his Deputy for Combat Archery, or discuss them at events. All combat missile weapons that fall outside the scope of this handbook must be cleared through the Earl Marshal's office before they will be allowed on the field. In time, a new or revised set of criteria for combat archery will be published that will reflect the changes in rules and conventions that will inevitably occur.


    Combat Archery - Rules and Regulations

    Construction of Equipment

    Bows:

    1. Bows must be a minimum of 35 lbs. to maximum of 50 lbs. pull at 28 inches of draw length.
    2. Recurve and long bows are allowed, no compound bows.
    3. Crossbows must be between 35 and 50 pounds release weight at the nut.

    Arrows:

    1. Combat arrows shall be constructed by using one plastic golf tube and attaching a tennis ball to the reinforcing-ring end, or other secure means.
    2. The tennis ball must be securely attached by a strong cord of 1/8 inch or less diameter, tape alone is not sufficient.
    3. Knots or other large masses of cord are not permitted on the tip of the arrow.
    4. The cord must be securely attached to the tennis ball, such as with tape, so the tennis ball will not slip out from under the cord.
    5. The tennis ball must be covered with red tape or cloth. The entire surface area of the tennis ball need not be covered as long as there is sufficient red showing from all angles that the arrow may be held in. An `X' of red at the tip is not sufficient.
    6. Fletches must be of a soft, flexible material, such as foam or duct tape, and rounded so as to not have sharp corners.
    7. Fletches are not required to be placed on combat arrows.
    8. Size and number of fletches on each arrow is left to the discretion of the archer.
    9. The maximum length of each arrow shaft is 28 inches. The minimum length of each crossbow bolt is 14 inches.
    10. Additional weight, beyond the materials needed to construct the arrow, is not allowed.
    11. Arrow shafts need not be covered with tape. They may, however, be taped if so desired.
    12. No part of any arrow may be colored red except for the tennis ball.
    13. A notch may be placed at the end of the arrow if desired. Size and depth are left to the discretion of the archer.
    14. Notches may be reinforced to help keep the shape of the notch.
    15. Holding tabs may be placed at the end of arrows so they may be held by archers wearing gauntlets. Holding tabs must be securely attached and constructed of a non-rigid material such as cloth or light leather.
    16. An identifiable `makers mark' must be visible on each arrow or crossbow bolt.

    Javelins:

    1. Javelins must be constructed of schedule-40 PVC plastic pipe, with a minimum outside diameter of 1-1/8 inches.
    2. The shaft must be between four and five feet in length.
    3. A disk of heavy leather the same diameter as the shaft, or a schedule 40 PVC cap must be taped securely over each end of the shaft.
    4. The shaft must be entirely wrapped with fiber-reinforced tape, with a window cut in the tape to show the SCH-40 stamp.
    5. The tip must meet the requirements of a one-handed thrusting tip, as outlined in the Middle Kingdom Marshal's Handbook.
    6. Javelins must weigh between one and two pounds.
    7. Javelins may be filled with crushed paper, carpet, leather, or any other non-rigid material. Water, lead shot, pennies, sand and similar materials are not-allowed.
    8. The top 12 inches of the tip of the must be covered with red tape or cloth. The entire area need not be covered as long as there is sufficient red showing from all angles that the javelin may be held in. An `X' of red at the tip is not sufficient.
    9. Javelins may have tail fins or trailers stability in flight.
    10. Tail fins must be of a soft, flexible such as foam or duct tape, and rounded so as to not have sharp corners.
    11. Trailers should be strips of cloth, or material, at least 1-1/2 inches wide and no more than 24 inches in length. Thin trailers, such as rope or cord, are not allowed.
    12. No part of the javelin may be colored except for the top 12 inches of the tip.
    13. An identifiable `makers mark' must be on the javelin.

    Experimental Combat Archery Weapons:

    1. Any new missile weapons, such as throwing axes or the like, must not have any rigid materials, such as wood or metal, in its construction. Rubber hose, 1-1/8 or larger is allowed for handles.
    2. Bolas and other missile weapons that use flailing pieces of rope are not allowed.
    3. Missile weapons that are projected throwing sticks, such as addle-addles, are not allowed.
    4. Catapults, cannons, and other siege must be approved on a case by case basis the Earl Marshal's office.

    Inspection of Equipment

    Bows

    1. Bows must be a minimum of 35 lbs. to maximum of 50 lbs. pull at 28 inches of draw length.
    2. Recurve and long bows are allowed, no compound bows.
    3. Crossbows must be between 35 and 50 pounds release weight at the nut.
    4. The poundage should be written on the bow by the manufacturer. If not, it should be tested by one of the designated marshals.
    5. Bows and crossbow prods must be free of cracks running across the limb; cracks in the varnish, and not in the material of the bow limb itself, may be exempted.
    6. Check that the string is not excessively worn by shooting with gauntlets; if all the strands of the string show heavy wear, reject the string.
    7. Look down the length of the string and check for extreme limb twist, when in doubt ask a designated marshal.
    8. Bows or crossbows failing any of the inspection points may be appealed to a designated marshal.

    Combat Arrows and Crossbow Bolts

    1. Arrows or bolts should be examined for brittleness. Squeeze them in your hand. If they crack or break, fail them.
    2. Arrows or bolts must have sufficient red on the point and on no other part of the arrow.
    3. Check that the fins are not rigid or otherwise hazardous.
    4. Tennis balls should be firmly attached by the reinforcing cords.
    5. Arrows or bolts no meeting the written requirements must be approved by designated marshals.

    Javelins

    1. Be sure that the SCH-40 mark is showing on the shaft.
    2. Check that the fins and trailers meet the specifications for size and flexibility.
    3. Make sure there is sufficient red on the tip and on no other part of the javelin.
    4. Flex the shaft moderately against the ground to check for brittleness.
    5. Check that the thrusting tip meets the one-handed requirements for rattan weapons, no exceptions.
    6. Check that the weight of the javelin is not excessively light or heavy. When in doubt, compare it against one of known weight.
    7. Make sure that the back end of the javelin has the leather disk intact.

    Other

    1. At the present all other forms of combat archery must be specifically approved by a designated marshal each time it is used.

    Conditions for Using Combat Archery

    Bows and Arrows

    1. Because of the unique nature of this weapon style, authorization must take place in melee combat. A marshal who is fully armored and wears a marshal's tabard and carries a marshalling staff accompanies the authorizee into combat. A second marshal observes from outside the melee. The marshals need to observe attacks on properly engaged targets, no wild shots that would endanger spectators, and proper behavior if approached by an opposing fighter. If conditions permit, the outside marshal may observe two or three simultaneous authorization attempts.
    2. Armor requirements, for archers, are the same as for fighters with one exception: the shooting hand gauntlet.
    3. Archers must wear on their shooting hand the minimum of a light leather glove with the back of the hand and wrist armored with a half gauntlet.
    4. Archers may not carry shields on their arms while shooting a bow.
    5. Fighters may carry an extra supply of arrows.
    6. Archers may carry a backup rattan weapon while shooting a bow.
    7. Archers may not use, or hold, a rattan weapon while holding a bow.
    8. Archers may not throw javelins while holding a bow.
    9. Archers are responsible for where their arrows land, that any spectators are not endangered.
    10. Archers are responsible for the condition of the arrows that they shoot, including those that they glean off the field and re-shoot.
    11. Scouts may glean and carry arrows.
    12. Archers that have been killed may leave their bows on the field to be used by others.
    13. Archers may use a pavis, (a legal shield that is propped up by a piece of rattan that has had the ends beveled or a legal rattan weapon.)

    Javelins

    1. Javelin throwers need only be fighters.
    2. Javelin throwers must wear a full legal gauntlet on the throwing hand.
    3. Archers may not throw javelins while holding a bow.
    4. Fighters may not swing a rattan weapon while holding a javelin in their other hand.
    5. Javelin throwers are responsible for where their javelins land.
    6. Javelin throwers are responsible for condition of the javelins that they throw, including those that they glean off the field.
    7. Scouts may not glean, carry, or throw javelins. Scouts may glean and carry all other missile weapons as long as they are gleaned and dropped out of sight immediately into a bag. They may NOT throw any weapons.

    Guidelines for General Use of Combat Archery

    Indoors

    1. Javelins may be used indoors if the Earl Marshal's office deems that they can be used safely.
    2. Combat archery using arrows against fighters is not allowed indoors.

    At Wars

    1. It is suggested that combat archery not be used in all scenarios.

    Other Times

    1. Individuals may not shoot at each other out of armor.
    2. Combat archery against opponents must be marshalled by the Earl Marshal's office.

    Rules and Effects of Arrows in Combat

    Arrows

    1. Arrows must hit point first to be good.
    2. Arrows need not hit hard to be good, especially at long range, but the fighter needs to feel some impact.
    3. Arrows may glance without killing.
    4. Arrows that glance may kill those standing behind.
    5. All combatants are considered engaged by any archer that can land an arrow legally once combat commences.
    6. Legal targets with arrows are the same as rattan weapons. While a grill or front face shot on the helm is traditionally much easier to recognize, a combat arrow striking on the side of the helm with sufficient force to be noticed and acknowledged is also a killing blow.
    7. Arrows may not be thrown by hand or be used as a dagger.

    Javelins

    1. Javelins must hit point first to kill.
    2. Javelins must hit with the force of a one-handed thrust to kill.
    3. Javelins may glance without killing.
    4. Javelins that glance may kill those standing behind.
    5. All combatants are considered engaged by javelin fire once combat commences.
    6. Legal targets with javelins are the same as rattan weapons.
    7. Javelins may not be used as thrusting weapons.


    Conduct of Archers and Fighters

    Attacks Upon Archers by Fighters

    1. Fighters may not grasp, strike, or swing at, a bow or arrow to disrupt an archer from shooting.
    2. Fighters may strike any archer who has been properly engaged and has not yielded.
    3. Range of engagement for a fighter to attack an archer is weapons range of the fighter.
    4. An archer that is unwise enough to turn back on a fighter, once properly engaged, may be hit in the back.
    5. Fighters may not demand that an archer yield or die. They may, however, offer the archer an opportunity to yield.
    6. Fighters may not strike an archer that has given a cry of `YIELD'.
    7. Fighters may not strike an archer that is holding a bow over their head.
    8. Fighters may not purposely damage combat missiles to remove them from the field.

    Archers Attacked While Holding a Bow and Arrows

    1. An archer may not block a rattan weapon with a bow or arrow.
    2. Bows that are struck by rattan weapons are considered broken and may not be used again until they are re-inspected for damage.
    3. Archers may yield by giving a cry of `YIELD', and falling to the ground.
    4. Archers may yield by holding their bows their heads and giving a cry of 'YIELD'
    5. Archers that are approached by a fighter that has a clear and unimpeded path to them are strongly encouraged to `YIELD' instead of forcing the fighter to strike them.
    6. Bows and arrows given to marshals or constables are considered removed from the field.
    7. A quiver of arrows is not considered defense against rattan weapons.
    8. Those using crossbows must ensure the safety of those around them by safely discarding the crossbow before drawing a rattan weapon. For the purposes of this rule, safely means placing the crossbow in an out-of-bounds area, handing it to a marshal, or otherwise seeing that the crossbow is removed from the fighting area. Placing the crossbow on the ground is not acceptable. Any archer using a crossbow who ignores this rule may lose his/her authorization. Crossbow users are encouraged to 'YIELD' when approached by an armored fighter.
    9. Bows should be discarded safely.

    Attacks Upon Fighters by Archers

    1. Archers may shoot any fighter that is facing them.
    2. Fighters that approach to within weapons range, engage an archer that has an arrow nocked, then flee, may be shot in the back as they flee.
    3. Attacks upon archers by archers.

    Attacks Upon Archers by Archers

    1. Archers may fire arrows at any other archer that can be hit on a legal area of their body.
    2. Archers that are aware of the present position of opposing archers are deemed directly engaged, at weapons range, with that archer.
    3. If the opposing archer is aware of the presence of another archer, and turns their back to reload, or some such thing, they may be hit with arrows.
    4. If an archer changes their firing location, they are considered not engaged at weapons range with an opposing archer until their new position is recognized or the opposing archer is facing them.

    Attacks Upon Fighters Holding Javelins

    1. Fighters may not strike, or swing at, javelins to disrupt the fighter from throwing.
    2. Fighters holding just a javelin are considered armed.
    3. Range of engagement for fighters javelins is weapons range of the attacking fighter.
    4. Fighters may not purposely damage javelins to remove them from the field.
    5. Fighters that approach to within weapons range, engage an archer that has a javelin prepared, then flee, may be shot in the back as they flee.

    Fighters Attacked While Holding a Javelin

    1. Javelin throwers may not block rattan weapons with a javelin.
    2. Javelins that are struck by rattan weapons are considered broken and may not be used again until they are re-inspected for damage.
    3. Javelins given to marshals or constables are considered removed from the field.

    Attacks Upon Scouts by Archers and Javelin Throwers

    1. Scouts may not be shot or thrown at with missile weapons. A scout is NOT dead if hit directly or at a glance, by accident or on purpose, by a combat arrow or other missile weapon.
    2. Archers may NOT touch scouts with their bow or arrows.
    3. Fighters may NOT touch scouts with javelins.
    4. Archers kill scouts by coming within 10 feet and declaring each scout dead, (the same as any other armored fighter).
    5. A scout may not be declared dead by an enemy if a friendly fighter or archer is between them and the enemy.
    6. A scout MAY NOT hold or carry a bow or crossbow in a combat archery environment.

    Defense Against Missile Attack

    Blocking Arrows

    1. Arrows are blocked by shields, rattan weapons, javelins, bows and other arrows.
    2. Archers may not intentionally block arrows with their bows. Repeated intentional blocks with the bow may result in the archer being removed from the field.
    3. Bows that are accidentally struck by arrows may continue to be used undamaged.
    4. Archers hit on the bow or string hand may continue shooting.
    5. If a fighter or archer is struck upon the hand while attempting to catch or block an arrow in flight, the hand is considered injured, and no longer usable.
    6. Fighters and archers may not turn their back on an arrow in flight to negate the effect of the arrow.

    Blocking Javelins

    1. Javelins are blocked shields, rattan weapons, javelins, bows and other arrows.
    2. Archers may not intentionally block javelins with their bows. Repeated intentional blocks with the bow may result in the archer being removed from the field.
    3. Bows that are accidentally struck by javelins may continue to be used undamaged.
    4. Archers hit on the bow hand may continue shooting.
    5. Archers hit on the string hand have lost the use of that hand.
    6. If a fighter or archer is struck upon the hand while attempting to catch or block an arrow in flight, the hand is considered injured, and no longer usable.
    7. Fighters and archers may not turn their back on an arrow in flight to negate the effect of the arrow.

    Marshalling with Combat Archery

    Safety of Marshals, Scouts, and Spectators

    1. Make sure everyone, including spectators and especially photographers, know that there is combat archery in progress.
    2. Move the crowd or individuals back when they are in danger from missile fire.
    3. Redirect arrow fire from the archers away from crowds.

    Monitoring the Use of Javelins

    1. Watch out for individuals throwing javelins without full gauntlets on, warn them and remove them from the field if they persist.
    2. Watch out for javelins being used as rattan weapons, remove the individual if it looks intentional.
    3. Remind individuals that are being hit that javelins are being thrown; be aware that a lot of javelins land so softly that they are only good as face thrusts.
    4. Watch for fighters swinging rattan weapons and holding a javelin at the same time; order them to drop the javelin if they wish to use a rattan weapon.
    5. Watch for, and remove, any javelin that has been damaged during a melee.

    Monitoring the Use of Bows and Arrows

    1. Remind individuals that are being hit that arrows are landing squarely on them and that they need not be hard to be good.
    2. Watch for archers holding rattan weapons along with their bows; order them to drop one or the other. A crossbow user must comply with the rule for safely discarding a crossbow.
    3. Marshals should remove any bow that looks as if it is about to be trampled by a melee of fighters; you may replace it in the spot later if it is feasible.
    4. Watch for, and remove, any arrow that has been damaged during a melee.
    5. If you notice that a bow or crossbow has been hit by a rattan weapon, confiscate that bow for the duration of the battle and make sure it is given to someone for inspection before it is returned to use.
    6. If an archer repeatedly and intentionally blocks arrows or javelins with their bow or crossbow, warn them that this is not allowed. If they persist, remove them from the field.

    Monitoring the Actions of Fighters Around Combat Archery

    1. Fighters are not allowed to advance upon the archers' position with their backs turned to avoid being killed by arrows. First warn the fighter/s that they can not do this, then declare that they are engaged by arrow fire and marshal the combat archery as if they are legally engaged by the archers.
    2. Fighters may not touch the bow or nocked arrow of an archer in an attempt to disrupt the archer from firing. Warn any fighters that do so, and remove them if they continue.
    3. Archers and fighters that show a blatant disregard for the rules may, as always, be asked to leave the field.

    Rules of Engagement with Combat Archery

    One of the more frequent thoughts that runs through the minds of archers is "just who in this mass confusion am I engaged to fire upon?". Likewise, many fighters ask themselves "which of the archers can legally shoot at me, and how do I go about legally killing one?".

    I will attempt to clarify some of these questions by explaining the rules of engagement for combat archery.

    The most difficult concept to grasp is that everyone except scouts and other non-combatants are engaged with missile fire once combat commences. In layman's terms, this simply means that anyone may be hit on the front side of their bodies by arrows and javelins regardless of whether or not they have eye contact with, or even know the whereabouts of, the attacker.

    We normally think of engagement to mean that we can hit our opponents, even if they are not looking, such as in a line on a bridge. However, with missile weapons, engagement, once combat commences, applies only to the fronts of individuals. This is not based on safety, but rather on courtesy and a sense of fair play. There are provisions for attacks from behind with missile weapons. These provisions are explained in detail in the following paragraphs.

    Attacks upon Archers by Fighters

    In order for a fighter to legally attack an archer, the fighter must be engaged with that archer at the weapons range of the fighter. If an archer shoots at an approaching fighter then turns to run before the fighter is within their weapons range, the fighter may not attack the archer from behind. If the archer waits until the fighter is within the fighter's weapon range to run, the archer is considered directly engaged at weapons range with that fighter, and is subject to all legal attacks that any other fighter would be subject to, including attacks from behind, if they turn to flee.

    If a fighter "sneaks up" on an archer, it is no different than if the fighter approached another fighter in that same manner. The archer is not able to be attacked until they are properly engaged. Fighters are reminded that they may not foul the bow or arrow of the archer.

    Attacks upon Fighters by Archers

    Archers may shoot at any fighter that is facing them. If a fighter can not be hit on the front of their bodies, they are immune to arrow fire even if they are aware of the presence and location of an archer. This means that if a spearman is standing sideways on a bridge while fighting, you may not hit him on his backside even if he knows you are there. If you wish to hit him, you must go to the other side of the bridge and shoot at him from his front side, or shoot him in the face if he turns his head towards you.

    This does not mean that fighters can turn their backs on archers to keep from being hit. If the archer has drawn their bow back, or if the arrow is already in flight, and a fighter deliberately turns their back, the arrow will still affect them. This will be a judgement call, so talk to your opponents and reach some sort of agreement.

    This policy also does not allow fighters to walk backwards towards archers so they can't be hit by arrow fire. If marshals find fighters using this particular strategy, they are empowered to declare that the fighters are now subject to arrow fire or even remove them from the field entirely for abuse of the rules.

    If a fighter approaches to within their own weapon's range and engages an archer, then turns away, the fighter is subject to attacks from behind, just as an archer would be had they turned their back instead.

    Suppose, for example, an archer is standing with a group of fighters, and an opposing spearman closes to within spear range of the group, including the archer, engages them in combat, then decides to leave. If the spearman backs away from the group, then turns his back, he is still legally engaged with any weapon capable of hitting him, including the arrow of the archer.

    If a fighter approaches to within their weapon's range of an archer, engages them, then flees, the archer is allowed to shoot at the fighter for as long as the fighter is within range of the bow. So, in another example, if a fighter runs in, swings at the archer and misses, then runs 30 yards away and stops to catch his breath with his back still to the archer, he can be shot by that archer. If however, the archer fires at the fleeing fighter and misses, he may not reload and shoot again. Once an arrow has been fired, the archer is no longer engaged with the fighter in question.

    So, if a fighter waits until the archer has fired his arrow to attack, the archer may not fire upon the fighter if he nocks the arrow after the fighter has already turned their back, to run away.

    Attacks upon Archers by other Archers

    Engagement between archers is less clear cut than between fighters due to the long and variable range of bows. You will notice that the rules state that archers are engaged with all opposing archers as soon as fighting commences. This means that you may shoot any archer that can be hit on the front of their bodies excluding their knees, lower legs, and hands. You may also hit an archer that has their back or blind side to you under some special circumstances. If the opposing archer is absolutely aware of your present position, i.e. you both have been exchanging arrow fire, and for some reason the opposing archer turns their back or blind side to you to reload or talk to someone, you may continue to legally fire upon them. Unlike fighters, who are immune to arrow fire when they are not facing an opposing archer, archers are considered directly engaged at weapons range with each other and thus may be struck from behind if they turn away from their engaged opponent. This is not unlike two spearmen engaged with each other at spear range and one stops to talk to someone beside them. If he has not disengaged from the opposing spearman by backing out of range first, he may still be legally hit by that opposing spearman.

    If you happen to move from your present position, you may not fire upon an archer that is facing away from you, until he is aware of your new position. If he happens to turn and face you, while still unaware of your new position, you may fire upon him. Assuming you do not hit him and he acknowledges your new position, you may continue to fire at him even if he turns away.


    Javelin Technique

    by Master Pavel Iosevitch

    Javelins are thrown much like a dart. Most of the grip and control comes from the first and second fingers. Let the weight rest on the pad of the thumb at, or close to, the balance point of the javelin. Put the first finger even with the thumb and touching the javelin with the bottom half of the pad. The second finger should grip with the side of the pad.

    Control is achieved by flexing the digits up and down together to keep the javelin on an even keel. The path of the javelin in your hand needs to be as flat as possible to impart little or no spin to the javelin. As most of us are not strong enough to throw a flat javelin, make sure you allow for a little arc on the shot.

    Javelins are best used by designated javelineers; folk who have the right grip and eye. But, as they can be just plain fun and relieve a lot of stress, anyone in the line should be familiar with their use.


    SECTION V -- SCOUTS


    SCOUTING - An Introduction

    Scouts have been around since the very first Pennsic Wars. Scouting was considered an activity you could do when you couldn't do anything else. It was the only activity that you didn't have to be eighteen years old to do. The age then was fourteen years or older with parent consent. The cost to scout was very low, with only a scout helm being needed.

    Scouts were first utilized for carrying messages, guiding troops, and finding the enemy banner during the woods battle. There were several very noteworthy occasions on which scouts really proved their worth. Still, the early scouts suffered from a certain lack of credibility--there were instances of inaccurate reports and garbled messages (caused by lack of training) which didn't establish confidence towards scouts--but they tried to make up for with energy and enthusiasm.

    Middle Kingdom Marshals had very little to do with scouts. They had their own rules and requirements for helms, and were only active once a year at Pennsic. The Earl Marshal had a Deputy for Scouts that was responsible for watching over the Scout Program and reporting to the Earl Marshal. At Pennsic the scouts checked in with the Deputy Earl Marshal for Scouts, who insured that their helms passed inspection and that they had current scout cards.

    Over the years the scouting program has grown, just as the Middle Kingdom and Pennsic has. The age for scouting has been raised to eighteen. The Scouts are no longer only used during the Woods Battle. Their role has expanded to being used in the Field Battle as Decoy Forces, and now they are normally in ALL the Battles. They relay messages from commanders to units, find people that are needed, and act as many sets of eyes. One year they were used as marker posts so that our advancing army would know how far to move forward. The Scouts' ability to be on the field during fighting and giving water to our fighters have earned them the name of Combat Water Bearers. (Note: They are not water bearers per se. Water bearers may not be on the field during fighting. Scouts can be on the field and just happen to be carrying water, as all good scouts are supposed to.) During a battle in which the scouts were watering our fighters, heat-related problems for the Middle was less than twenty five percent of the other side's.

    The Scouts have gone from a "Pennsic-only" activity to a year-round one, encouraged by the Middle Kingdom Scout Guild, which is the only Scout guild in the known world. More and more scouts are turning up throughout the Kingdom at events and practices. They are even found in battles that have combat archery. There now exists the position of Kingdom Scout Champion as well as regalia for the position. As a Marshal you need to understand the program, the rules that guide it, and the different helm requirements. As a Marshal you need to know the basics.


    Scout Authorization Procedure

    1. Who May Authorize A Scout?
      Any warranted fighting (heavy) marshal who has received a Scout Authorization number. To receive a number, you must contact the Deputy Earl Marshal for Scouts to express your interest, have a current scout authorization card, and have received the current authorization form and other related paper work. Consider scouting like a weapons style. You can't authorize someone in a style that you don't have. The current Regional Scout Deputies listed in the Pale may also authorize a scout, as can some previous deputies. For a current copy of who may authorize scouts, send a S.A.S.E. to the Deputy Earl Marshal of Scouts who maintains the list.
    2. How Do You Authorize A Scout?
      Just follow the requirements on the current Scout Authorization Form and fill in the blanks. Check off that the scout knows:
      • the limitations and safety concerns in an S.C.A. combat
      • environment
      • the current scout rules in theory and practice
      • how to die defensively
      Also check that the scout :
      • is eighteen years of age or older
      • has a current S.C.A. membership (any level).

    The preferred authorization method involves hands-on training and observation coupled with familiarization with the necessary rules and procedures. How long does it take to authorize a scout? This depends on each person , their background and maturity. A person who has been a fighter may be much easier to authorize as a scout because they have been exposed to S.C.A fighting already. The primary thing that you are looking for is, does this person act SAFELY around melee fighting? Once the form is completed and signed, send this form to the Deputy Earl Marshal of scouting whose address is on the bottom of the form. A scout authorization card will be sent directly to the scout.


    SCOUT RULES

    1. A Midrealm scout must be at least 18 years of age or older - no exceptions!!
    2. A scout must belong to the SCA and have both a current blue membership card and a current scout authorization card. These cards must be presented during check-in before scouting. If a properly executed waiver is signed, this will be accepted as a temporary substitute until a blue membership card can be obtained.
    3. A scout should have had some exposure to SCA fighting so that s/he has some familiarity with weapons, group movement, vision limitations of helms and the knowledge and experience that will enable them to move in a battle in a safe manner.
    4. The ONLY WAY a scout can be declared dead is by an enemy getting within ten (10) feet and verbally declaring the scout dead. At no time is a scout to be killed by being touched either by a weapon or by the fighter's hand. Violation of this rule will result in the fighter in question being evicted from the battle.
      • A fighter can only declare one scout dead at a time.
      • A scout MAY NOT be declared dead if a friendly fighter or archer is between the scout and the enemy fighter.
      • A scout cannot be killed by a fighter who has their helm off, is partially unarmored, has no weapon in hand, or who doesn't have their Kingdom tape displayed on their helm.1
    5. "Holds" apply to scouts. This includes scouts who are in a group the marshals put a hold on, ones who are approaching to report to a "hold" group, or ones who are just leaving the group. Scouts must wait until the hold is lifted and then proceed.
    6. SCOUTS DO NOT, UNDER ANY CIRCUMSTANCES, CARRY A WEAPON OR ANYTHING THAT MIGHT BE MISTAKEN AS A WEAPON!!! This includes daggers, staves, walking sticks, shields, etc. This restriction also extends to any form of live steel. If the scout is "dead" and is helping an injured or "dead" fighter, the scout should take his/her helm off and have the fighter take his/her helm off if it is safe to do so.
    7. Scouts MUST wear a helm that has passed inspection by the Deputy Earl Marshal for Scouting, appointed deputies, or group marshals who are familiar with the rules. Said helm MUST be marked with at least three (3) solid white diamonds no less than two (2) inches by one and one half (1 1/2) inches, identifying the scout as a non-combatant from a distance of at least twenty feet. Said helm MUST be marked with the identification color/tape of the kingdom/side he is scouting for.
    8. Scouts must have secure footwear on and clothing that covers their legs and torso.
    9. Scouts must behave in a safe manner at all times.
    10. Scouts must know how to die defensively if hit by mistake.
    11. A separate authorization and endorsement on the scout authorization card are necessary before a scout may be in a combat archery environment. The current level 2 protection will be required, which is different than level 1 used for normal scouting activities.
    12. Scouts do not need a special authorization to be in a battle where thrown weapons are used; but they need the current level 2 protection. If combat archery is being used in a battle, the special combat archery environment authorization will be necessary for the scout along with the level 2 protection.


    Scout Helm Requirements (Level 1 Protection)

    There is a lot of confusion on what a scout helm should be. Marshals need to be familiar with the scout helm requirements to be able to check them better. If you are unsure of the standards, consult a Regional Scout Deputy or another Marshal who authorizes scouts to check helms. (They are just more familiar with the standards.)

    The minimum will be a sole-leather skullcap reinforced with metal, or a metal skullcap of at least 22 gauge. This helm is to be padded to protect the head of the scout. In addition this helm must have a flap or flaps extending down over the back and sides of the neck, or a camail made of stiffened and padded leather or its equivalent. A chin strap must be used.

    Face protection is to consist of no less than three (3) metal bars of at least one quarter (1/4) inch diameter. One of the three bars must be set at right angles to the other two. Freon tank helms are allowed for scouts as long as they are cut or shaped in such a manner as to provide adequate protection as stated above. (See diagrams below for examples.)

    There will be no sharp or projecting edges or ends that might do damage. Homemade camouflage painting is allowed as long as the white diamonds remain clearly visible.

    In case of a disagreement over a helm, the decision of the inspecting marshal may be reviewed by either the Earl Marshal or the Deputy Earl Marshal for Scouts. Their decision will be final.

    Any non-standard helm may be passed only by the Earl Marshal or Deputy Earl Marshal of Scouts. Examples of these helms are modified hockey helms, baseball helms, riot helms etc. It is strongly suggested that one avoid these helms and try to use a more standard design. A fighting helm may be used to scout in BUT its use is discouraged. Wearing a fighting helm only increases the chance of a scout being mistaken for a fighter and hit.

    The big thing to remember is that a scout helm is not meant to or built to be hit repeatedly. It is to take a chance, one shot blow.

    Dying Defensively

    It is extremely important that all scouts understand the procedure and circumstances when they should die defensively. First of all, a scout should NEVER be killed by being touched by hand or weapon. There have been cases in which a scout has been touched or hit by accident or on purpose. Each of these cases were dealt with. If a scout is hit or touched they should Die Defensively. They are to drop to the ground going into a fetal position, covering up their kidneys with their elbows and tucking their neck in. As they go to the ground they yell HOLD, MARSHAL, SCOUT DOWN. By going to the ground you are trying to break contact with the person who hit you. By yelling HOLD you are trying to stop all further action against you. My yelling MARSHAL you are trying to get help there to correct this problem. By yelling SCOUT DOWN you are letting others know you problem.

    Now that I have explained the above I will also ask you to exercise large amounts of common sense in doing the above. If a person trips into you and touches you by accident you don't have to yell HOLD, MARSHAL, SCOUT DOWN unless you feel threatened. The rule as to when you Die Defensively is: If you feel in danger or threatened as to your safety, or there is any doubt, die defensively. If you are hit on purpose try and notice as much as you can about the fighter for a description. Anything that can help the marshals locate this person is helpful.


    Scouts in a Combat Archery Environment - Introduction

    Yes, scouts may be in a combat archery environment. Their duties will include, but not be limited to, gleaning and carry arrows, running messages and acting as spotters. It is very important for the scout who is authorized to be in a combat archery environment to be very familiar with the rules involving scouts and combat archery. Many fighters and marshals don't know the rules and the scout might have to help be a friendly reminder as to what the rules are. The scout should also have read ALL the rules for Combat Archery to have a better understanding as to what is going on and why.

    Authorization Procedure for Scouting in a Combat Archery Environment

    A separate authorization and endorsement on the scout authorization card are necessary before any scout may be in a combat archery environment.

    1. Who may authorize a scout?
      The same person who can authorize a scout can authorize a scout for a combat archery environment. The same scout authorization number is used for both. You must contact the Deputy Earl Marshal of Scouts to express your desire to be able to authorize scouts for a combat archery environment. You MUST have a current copy of the section involving combat archery from the current Middle Kingdom Marshal's handbook.
    2. How do you authorize a scout for a combat archery environment?
      First, go over the rules for scouts in a combat archery environment and ensure that they know them. Also check that they have read all the combat archery rules at least once and answer any questions they may have.

      Next, the scout MUST be observed by the person authorizing in a melee situation in which there is combat archery. They may be beside the scout, close by, or off the field but in a position to observe unobstructed. The major thing to look for is whether the person acts and behaves in a safe manner.

      Watch them gleam arrows, note how aware they are of their surroundings and see whether they pay attention to the fighters and the battle. Check off the block marked combat archery environment on the current Middle Kingdom Scout Authorization form. Fill out the rest of the form where applicable, and send the signed form to the Deputy Earl Marshal for Scouting for his records.

    Level 2 protection for scouts in a combat archery environment:
    (The following guidelines apply only if golf tube arrows are used.)

    To be in a combat archery environment the following are mandatory:

    1. Upgraded scout helm
    2. Kidney protection
    3. Groin protection
    4. Gorget/Neck protection

    1. The normal requirements for a scout helm are in effect plus the following. The grill must have no opening wide enough to pass a one and a half (1 1/2) inch dowel through. This may be accomplished by utilizing a bar system by itself or a bar system in conjunction with a heavy mesh wire secured to the outside of the bars. The test will be to see if the screen holds true and doesn't collapse into the inside of the grill. One example of screen would be 1" by 1/2" rabbit cage wire.

    The minimum bar diameter for a scout helm to be used in a combat archery environment is 3/16 of an inch. If a helm is only to be used in normal scouting the minimum bar diameter will remain one quarter (1/4) inch being only three bars are required.

    2. The kidney area must be protected using the "hard-over-soft" standard. Mandatory protection is not required for the short ribs and lower spine.

    3. Groin protection must be used. For males, the standard athletic protective cup is recommended and is to be worn as designed. For females, some equivalent kind of "hard-over-soft" protection is required.

    4. Gorgets must be constructed so as to distribute the force of a blow to the neck area in such a way that damage to the neck is prevented. The same standards for a gorget worn by a fighter apply to a scout. The gorget worn with the scout helm must provide the necessary protection to the neck.

    Suggested but not required:

    • Soft elbow and knee pads.
    • Safety glasses.
    • An Olive Drab Tabard with a eight (8) inch white diamond on the front and back centered between the belt line and neck. This enables a scout to be seen as a scout more easily.

    Rules for Scouting in Combat Archery

    Rules for Scouting in Combat Archery (read the current rules that involve scouts in the current Middle Kingdom Knight Marshal's Handbook)



    PART II -- FENCING


    I TYPES OF MARSHALS

    A. Earl Marshal: This person is responsible for all combat related activities in the Kingdom, including but not limited to Armored Combat, Fencing, Archery, Scouting and Equestrian activities. The Earl Marshal is responsible for warranting all of the senior Marshals in the Kingdom.

    B. Kingdom Marshal of Fence (KMOF): This is the coordinator of all fencing activities in the Kingdom. The Kingdom Marshal of Fence is also responsible for making sure that the rules and conventions for fencing are followed. The Kingdom Marshal of Fence is responsible for making sure that proper steps are taken either to bring about compliance, or to see that the person(s) violating the rules are not allowed to participate, or both. This Marshal is also responsible for all of the required paperwork for fencing. This Marshal shall be warranted by both Their Majesties and the Earl Marshal, and shall choose, at discretion, regional marshals (subject to the approval of the Earl Marshal) to assist. The Marshal of Fence shall also be responsible for warranting fencing marshals in the Kingdom.

    C. Regional Marshal of Fence (RMOF): These marshals have been assigned a region to oversee on a day to day basis. They are the link between the Kingdom Marshal of Fence and the local fencing marshals. Part of their job will be to handle problems on a regional level as they come up. They are to make sure that the rules and conventions are being followed properly. They can/should make suggestions to the Kingdom Marshal of the Fence on possible rule changes. When a new rule comes out, they are the ones who will guide the local marshals in the enforcement of this rule. Regional marshals are responsible for the issuing of Marshal in Training appointments, since these marshals work with the local marshals and are best able to determine when a marshal is ready for advancement. The RMOF is responsible for holding any MOF training sessions in their region and for giving the written MOF test.

    D. Principality Marshals of Fence (PMOF): In most instances the PMOF will function as the equivalent of a RMOF for a principality. With the consent of the KMOF a PMOF may split a principality into regions to assist in administration. In a principality where such regions have been established the following structure will be established:

    The Principality Marshal of Fence shall be the senior MOF in the principality and will represent the fencers in the principality to the Principality Council. The Principality MOF will be responsible for holding any Regional Court in the principality (see Regional Court Section VIII). The Principality MOF will report to the Kingdom MOF on the same schedule as Regional MOF's.

    Principality Regional MOFs (PRMOF) will serve under the Principality MOF. The Principality Regional MOF will be responsible for issuing MOFIT appointments and for receiving reports from all Group MOFITs and MOFITs ofthe Field. The Principality Regional MOF will be responsible for holding MOF Training sessions within the region and for approving the MIT appointment before it is sent to the Kingdom MOF (the MOF candidate who resides in a Principality with separate administrative regions must send a copy of the completed MIT appointment form to the Principality MOF, who will have two weeks to notify the KMOF in writing if he believes the candidate should not receive a warrant.) The Principality Regional MOF will report to the Principality MOF and Kingdom MOF on a quarterly basis. These reports will be due February 22, May 22, July 22 and October 22. The final report of the year will be the DOMESDAY REPORT.

    Fully warranted Marshals of Fence (both Group MOF's and MOF's of the Field) will report to the Principality MOF and the Kingdom MOF (see schedule section XII.)

    Group MOFITs will report to the Regional MOF and Kingdom MOF on the same schedule as fully warranted Group MOFs (see schedule section XII).

    MOFITs of the Field will report only to the Regional MOF on the same schedule as a fully warranted MOF of the Field (see schedule section XII.)

    The Principality Marshals of Fence for Ealdormere and Northshield may, with the approval of the Kingdom Marshal of Fence, hold a Principality Marshal of Fence Meeting once a year. The Meeting must take place at an official event which shall be announced in the Principality newsletter at least one issue prior to the event. Attendance at this meeting will be considered the equivalent of attending a Kingdom Quarter Court for warranted Marshals of Fence who reside within the Principality. A roster of those warranted Marshals of Fence who attend this meeting must be forwarded to the Kingdom Marshal of Fence within one week of the meeting being held.

    E. Baronial/Group Marshals of Fence: These are the backbone of the marshallate. These gentles are assigned to a local barony or group, to train new fencers and guide new marshals. They are responsible for enforcing the rules and conventions on a local level. They are also the first line of problem solvers that the Kingdom has.

    F. Marshals of Fence of the Field: These gentles are warranted as fencing marshals not assigned to any one group/barony. They have similar obligations to enforce the rules on a local level.

    G. Out of Kingdom Marshals of Fence: Marshals of Fence from outside the Middle Kingdom may assist with rapier activities but may not be one of the two authorizing marshals in a Middle Kingdom fencing authorization unless they are also warranted Middle Kingdom Marshals of Fence.

    A Marshal of Fence who resides outside the Middle Kingdom and wishes to become a warranted Middle Kingdom Marshal of Fence may do so by applying to the Kingdom Marshal of Fence. Such applications will be handled on a case by case basis by the KMOF. The application would only be considered if the MOF from outside the Middle Kingdom could fulfill the prerequisites listed below to the KMOF's satisfaction.

    A Marshal of Fence who is warranted by another kingdom and takes up residency in the Middle Kingdom may become a warranted Middle Kingdom MOF if they can fulfill the following prerequisites: 1) Provide documentation of SCA membership, (2) provide documentation of warrant from previous kingdom of residence, (3) authorize, or reauthorize in, at least three Middle Kingdom fencing weapons forms, (4) have protective equipment and weapons that pass Middle Kingdom requirements, (5) pass the written MOF test, (6) be acceptable to the Kingdom or Principality/Regional MOF after working with them at one or more major events.

    H. Constables: Constables are members of the SCA who supervise the list boundaries. Constables who enter the list itself must have a combat waiver on file with the Minister of the Lists and whenever possible should be authorized fencers. .

    I. Warrant Expiration All warrants shall expire after two years, but can be renewed for two more years at the end of each two year term (see Maintaining MOF Warrant section IV). All warranted marshals shall attend at least one Quarter Court or Principality MOF Meeting during the two year tenure of their warrant.

    II. Marshals of Fence in Training (MOFIT):

    A. To become a Marshal of Fence in Training in the Middle Kingdom a gentle must apply to the RMOF and fulfill the following criteria:

    1. Be an authorized fencer in the Middle Kingdom.
    2. Reside in the Middle Kingdom (exceptions will be handled on a case by case basis by the KMOF).
    3. Be authorized in single rapier and at least two other styles.
    4. A Group MOF in Training, where there is no other MOF available, needs only a single rapier authorization but must have three or more authorizations to become fully warranted. Group MOFITs are warranted by the Kingdom Marshal of Fence as officers of the local group. This warrant is subject to a six-month probationary period; after that time the warrant may be extended for an additional one and a half years, by which time the Group MOF in Training must have become fully warranted or will need to startover. The RMOF will issue the Marshal of Fence in Training appointment form (and in the case of a GMOF in Training notify the Kingdom Marshal of Fence so a probationary warrant is issued.)

    B. Warranted Marshals of Fence must fulfill all of the above qualifications, plus:

    1. have successfully completed a training program of no less than six months that includes at least:
      a) four supervised sessions marshaling at events (a MOF training session may substitute for two of these sessions)

      b) pass a written qualification test.
    2. the candidate must be acceptable to the regional/principality marshal, to the Kingdom Marshal of Fence (MOF candidates in principalities see PRMOF section I D above) and the Crown As a good guideline, it may take about one year to become a warranted Marshal of Fence. Take enough time to thoroughly familiarize yourself with the system, until you can point out to the Earl Marshal or the Kingdom Marshal of Fence equipment or weapons that don't pass, and explain why they fail.

    III. ON TRAINING NEW MARSHALS

    This is one of the most important jobs of a warranted marshal. How well we train our marshals will determine how well our fencing progresses. A warranted marshal will supervise no more than two MOFITs at one time. This allows the marshal to work closely with the MOFITs, to ensure that they learn the system.

    The warranted marshal at an event needs to determine the experience level of the MOFIT. The amount of supervision by the warranted marshal should decrease as time goes on. The warranted marshal should do most of the work with an inexperienced MOFIT, explaining the processes of equipment inspection, etc., as they go along. The warranted marshal should ascertain that the MOFIT understands why an item fails, and how the failure could be corrected. More experienced MOFITs should do more of the work, with the supervising marshal observing more often. The warranted marshal should question the MOFIT to test knowledge of the rules and equipment standards. These questions should be simple at first and then more difficult for a more experienced MOFIT.

    If a warranted marshal does not feel that the MOFIT has done enough work at an event or does not yet have a suitable grasp of the standards and rules, that marshal should not sign the MOFIT's training papers. This is especially true for the final recommendation signatures: If you as a warranted marshal do not feel that this MOFIT is ready to be warranted, don't sign the paperwork. Do, however, tell the candidate what is needed to get your signature.

    IV. MAINTAINING MOF WARRANT

    A Marshal of Fence is warranted for two years. To be re-warranted at the end of two years the MOF must:

    (a) be a current member of the Society for Creative Anachronism Inc.

    (b) maintain authorization(s) as a Middle Kingdom fencer

    (c) have attended at least one Kingdom Quarter Court or Principality MOF Meeting in the two years the warrant is valid

    (d) be acceptable to the Middle Kingdom Marshal of Fence and the Crown.

    V. ARBITRATION AND GRIEVANCE PROCEDURES

    By signing the Combat Waiver, any fencer, marshal, herald, or constable has accepted the Society-wide system of arbitration established by the Board. This section defines that system for the marshallate.

    The Marshal's Courts are set up to rule on infractions of the Rules of the Lists and the Conventions of Combat (plus the rules in the Middle Kingdom Fencer's Handbook). This includes fencer authorizations, marshal's warrants and the permission of a herald or constable to function within the lists. In the last case, the courts can only bar the individual from the lists. The Marshal's Courts system effectively standardizes and formalizes the current powers of the Earl Marshal, the Kingdom Marshal of the Fence, and their designates for solving problems.

    VI. ON OBSERVING RULES INFRACTION(S)

    A Marshal of Fence has several options when observing a violation of the rules depending upon the severity, type and number of violations:

    1. Take mental note of the infraction: When the fencer(s) themselves demonstrate that they are aware of the violation and do their best to avoid further violations, the MOF should simply make note of the violation unless further violations take place.
    2. Point out infraction and remind fencer(s) of the rule involved: When the MOF sees multiple violations of the same rule and/or the fencer(s) do not bring up rule infraction themselves, the MOF should point out the rule infraction and remind fencers of the rule(s) involved.
    3. Remove offending equipment: If a parry device, or some part of the fencer(s) personal equipment is involved in the infraction, have the fencer(s) remove the item from the list.
    4. Give a Verbal Warning to the fencer(s): All verbal warnings should be noted, in writing, at the list table and the MOF in Charge should be notified. (All record of the verbal warning should be destroyed at the end of the tournament if no other violation occurs.)
    5. Remove fencer(s) from the bout: After multiple infractions or a severe rules infraction a fencer may be removed from the bout. (Depending on the severity of the infraction(s), at least one verbal warning should have been given before this action is taken.) When a fencer is removed from a bout the MOF in Charge as well as all MOFs at the event should be made aware of the action so that further rules infractions can be observed very closely.
    6. Remove fencer(s) from the tournament/event's fencing activities: Marshal of Fence in Charge should be the deciding Marshal when this action is taken.
    7. Suspend Authorization card: See Marshal's Court section below.

    VII. MARSHAL'S COURT

    The Marshal in Charge of an event may, from time to time, have to discipline an individual. As a representative of the Crown and the Kingdom Marshal of Fence, the Marshal in Charge may remove a participant from the lists; remove a warranted marshal from the lists; or prohibit the presence in the lists of other persons who have combat related activities (herald, constable, etc.). The Marshal in Charge may also suspend a fencer's authorization card for the duration of the event. The Marshal in Charge in that case must immediately notify the Principality/Regional Marshal of Fence, the Kingdom Marshal of Fence and the Earl Marshal, who would then treat it as a complaint under section VIII entitled "Principality/Regional Marshal's Court".

    The Marshal in Charge or an affected individual may request that a Marshal's Court be convened to examine the issues and determine what actions (if any) will be taken. The decision of the Marshal's Court then supersedes the decision of the Marshal in Charge (if different) unless the Marshal in Charge is the Kingdom Marshal of the Fence, the Earl Marshal or the Crown.

    The Marshal's Court may be convened for the consideration of unchivalrous conduct, use of excessive force, violations of the Rules and Conventions of Combat, use of illegal or uninspected equipment, etc. It may also function as a fact-finding body (for example, examining the events leading to an injury) and make a determination of any fault.

    The Marshal's Court may remove a person from the lists for the duration of the event and may confiscate the person's Authorization Card. If an Authorization Card is confiscated the PMOF/RMOF, the Kingdom Marshal of Fence, and the Earl Marshal must be notified by telephone or Express Mail, and the report of the Court and the Authorization Card forwarded quickly to the Kingdom Marshal of Fence. The Court may warn an individual that any of these actions may be taken.

    The Court is composed of the Marshal in Charge of the event, who shall preside and who is responsible for a Report of the Court; a warranted marshal chosen by the affected individual; and one of the more experienced neutral fencers chosen by the Marshal in Charge. If the Marshal in Charge has a conflict of interest, another neutral warranted marshal shall be chosen by the Marshal in Charge.

    The Court must meet on the day of the event (specific time to be determined by the Marshal in Charge), and it must reach a decision by majority vote. The Marshal in Charge must see that a Court Report is forwarded to the Kingdom Marshal of Fence; any action of a Marshal's Court is automatically reviewed by the Quarter Court (see section IX). Appeals of any decision by the Marshal's Court by either the defendant or the complainant would go to the Quarter Court; however, any decision of the Marshal's Court would stand until reviewed by the Quarter Court. The Kingdom Marshal of Fence or the Earl Marshal, however, may suspend the action of a Marshal's Court until the decision is reviewed by the Quarter Court.

    VIII. REPORT SYSTEM AND THE REGIONAL MARSHAL'S COURT

    After receiving two or more unsolicited complaints, within six months, about an individual's violations of the Rules of the Lists, the Conventions of Combat, or other rules and customs governing SCA fencing or fencing-related activities, the Kingdom Marshal of Fence shall review the individual's behavior. If the complaints have merit but are not deemed by the Kingdom Marshal of Fence to be an immediate safety issue, the individual shall be put "on report" for six months. The individual and the regional fencing marshal will be privately informed by the Kingdom Marshal of Fence of that status. The local fencing marshal will not be notified. If no further complaints are received, the Kingdom Marshal of Fence will remove the "on report" status after the six-month period. The Kingdom Marshal of Fence also has the right to extend the "on report" period for up to one year.

    An individual "on report" may request the convening of a Regional Marshal's Court. This is so the "on report" person may view the evidence and confront the complainants. The Kingdom Marshal of Fence may cancel the "on report" status (for example, if the complainants decide not to participate in the court); in that case, the affected individual would not view the reports or learn the identities of the complainants.

    If additional reports are received or the Kingdom Marshal of Fence considers that there is an immediate safety issue, the Kingdom Marshal of Fence may take the following steps:

    1. Request that the PMOF/RMOF convene a Regional Marshal's Court. This Court shall be held at a location that is convenient for both the accused and the accusers (although it should be held in the accused's home group if at all possible). The court shall be convened within one month of being called for. The Regional Marshal's Court shall be composed of the Group Marshal of Fence, the PMOF/RMOF, and a warranted fencing marshal chosen by the individual. The PMOF/RMOF would preside. If the Group MOF or the PMOF/RMOF were interested parties, the Kingdom Marshal of Fence would choose replacements. This court would operate as described in section VII. Marshal's Court, and could suspend a fencer's authorization for one month or suspend a marshal's warrant for a similar period, or warn the individual of such action.

      The Kingdom Marshal of Fence could at his/her discretion affirm or reverse the decision of the Regional Marshal's Court. The decision of the Kingdom Marshal of Fence could be appealed to the Quarter Court (see section IX).

    2. The Kingdom Marshal of Fence may investigate the complaints and then make a decision based on the facts discovered in that investigation. That decision could then be appealed to the Quarter Court by the affected party.

      This course of action would be taken if the Kingdom Marshal of Fence felt that delay in action would endanger either the affected individual's safety or the safety of those around that individual.

    3. The Kingdom Marshal of Fence may take some lesser action (verbal warning, letter of reprimand, etc.) or no action at all. This decision would also be subject to the usual appeal process, beginning with the Quarter Court.

      All decisions of the Kingdom Marshal of Fence will remain in force until the Kingdom Marshal of Fence accepts the decision of a Marshal's Court or the Quarter Court, or the Kingdom Marshal of Fence's decision is reversed on appeal to the Earl Marshal, a Court of Chivalry, the Crown, the Society Marshal or the Board of the Directors of the SCA, Inc.

    IX. QUARTER COURT

    The Quarter Court is the principal court of appeals for this system of arbitration. It is composed of the Kingdom Marshal of Fence, who presides; the most senior Regional/Principality Marshal; and a person appointed by the Crown at the start of the reign.

    The Earl Marshal shall replace the Kingdom Marshal of Fence in case of a conflict of interest. The second senior-most PMOF/RMOF will replace the senior-most PMOF/RMOF in case of conflict of interest. If the Crown's appointee has a conflict of interest, then the Crown shall appoint an alternate.

    This Court reaches a decision by majority vote. It meets quarterly (at Coronations or Crown Tourneys, Pennsic, and at a winter event chosen by the Court's members). Decisions made by a Marshal's Court or a Regional/Principality Court will automatically be reviewed, as will all cases in which an authorization has been suspended or revoked, a warrant has been suspended or an injury has occurred.

    The Court has the power to overturn, augment, or otherwise alter any lower court or administrative ruling, given the following constraints: it may clear a participant from any charges or penalty given by a lower unit or administrative fiat; it may bar a fencer from participation for a specific length of time; or it may recommend that a Court of Chivalry be conducted.

    The Court may also consider issues (such as interpretations of the rules, fencing conventions, etc.) brought before it by any members of the Court. In this case, the Court may only make recommendations to the appropriate office/body.

    Minutes of all court proceedings are to be taken and passed on to the Crown, the Earl Marshal, and the Deputy Society Rapier Marshal. All decisions of the Quarter Court are considered final, but may be appealed to a Kingdom Court of Chivalry, subject to the provisions for those courts in Kingdom Law and Corpora. Any decision of the Quarter Court shall remain in effect in perpetuity unless reviewed and overturned, augmented or otherwise altered by a Kingdom Court of Chivalry, the Crown, the Society Marshal or the Board of Directors of the SCA, Inc.

    X. KINGDOM COURT OF CHIVALRY

    The nature and function of this court has already been defined by the Corpora of the Society and the Laws of the Middle Kingdom, and therefore will not be discussed here.


    XI. REPORTS

    Writing reports is the most tedious and boring aspect of a Marshal's work. Regardless, reports are necessary to give the Kingdom Marshal of Fence and his/her Regionals their chief indication of the affairs of the groups for which they are responsible. Unless reports are submitted, the Kingdom Marshal of Fence has no idea whether the individual marshal's job is being done properly. Failure to report will result in suspension of a group's permission to participate in fencing practice or events. The Kingdom Marshal of Fence also reserves the right to remove a group's marshal for failure to report. Therefore, the first duty of a group marshal is to find out the name and address of the superior officers and when reports are due. Local marshals should keep copies of all reports submitted. Standard forms make this procedure easy.

    XII. TYPES OF REPORTS AND REPORTING DATES

    A. Marshals of Fence of the Field shall report twice during the year to both their Regional/Principality Marshal and to the Marshal of Fence. They shall report on May 15 and November 15. The report should consist of a simple, brief note on what (if anything) they have done over the past six months. MIT's of the Field will report on the same schedule only to their Regional MOF.

    B. Group/Baronial Marshals/MOFIT's shall report four times a year to both their Regional/Principality Marshal and to the Kingdom Marshal of Fence. These reports shall include a correctly filled out Quarterly Report Form with all changes that have occurred in the last quarter in the local list of authorized fencers. This will tell the Marshal's superiors when the group loses or gains fencers, when fencers authorize in a new form, etc., and should include any change in the Group Fencing Marshal. Any fencer who has not participated in an official SCA fencing event for a year or who quits the Society should be reported as inactive. Other descriptive information concerning training, problems, and injuries should be included on a separate sheet. Reporting dates for Group/Baronial Marshals are February 15, May 15, August 15 and November 15. The November 15 report is also the DOMESDAY REPORT. This should include a summary of what the group's fencers did for the year. The Domesday must also include a roster of all the fencers in the group. The group seneschal should also get a copy of this report.

    C. Regional/Principality Marshals shall also report four times a year. These reports shall include a brief summary of the groups in their area who are fencing, who is the marshal of the group, and if that marshal is warranted yet. The report should also include any problems that have come up and what the Regional/Principality Marshal has done to solve them. Any suggestions for rules changes may be submitted at this time. The Regional/Principality Marshal's reports are due on March 1, June 1, September 1, and December 1. The December 1 report is also the DOMESDAY REPORT and should include a brief summary of what the area has done over the year. The Regional/Principality Marshals report to the Marshal of the Fence.

    D. Principality Regional Marshals of Fence shall report four times a year to the PMOF and KMOF. The Principality Regional report should cover the same information for the Principality region as the RMOF's include in their report. The Principality Regional MOF shall report February 22, May 22, July 22 and October 22. The final report will be the DOMESDAY REPORT.

    E. The Kingdom Marshal of Fence reports four times a year to the Earl Marshal and to the Deputy Society Marshal for Rapier Combat. These reports shall include a summary of how the fencing in the Kingdom is going. A listing of the numbers of fencers, marshals and groups participating should be included. Any problems that the Kingdom Marshal of the Fence feels the Earl Marshal should know about should be brought up at this time (if this hasn't already been done). Rules changes should also be brought up at this time. The Marshal of the Fence reports to the Deputy Society Marshal for Rapier Combat on February, May, August and November 15 and to the Earl Marshal on March, June, September, and December 15. The last report is the DOMESDAY REPORT and should include a summary of the Kingdom's fencing activities over the year.

    FAILURE TO FILE REPORTS

    Failure to file required reports will be considered a serious breach of the duty of a Marshal of Fence. A Group MOF/MOFIT who does not file two quarterly reports in a row will have his/her warrant suspended. While on suspension the Group MOF/MOFIT will not be allowed to hold any fencing practices. The Regional/Principality MOF will send a letter to the Group MOF/MOFIT notifying him/her of the suspension and will send a copy of this letter to the group seneschal and the Kingdom MOF. The Group MOF/MOFIT will have one month from the date the letter is sent to file a report or his warrant will be revoked.

    When a Group MOF/MOFIT fails to file a Domesday Report, all fencing activities will be suspended in that group (practices and events) until the Group MOF/MOFIT files the Domesday. This is the case even if another fully warranted MOF in good standing is available to run the practices and/or events. The Kingdom MOF will be responsible for printing a list of suspended groups in The Pale.

    A MOF/MOFIT of the Field who fails to report for one year will be placed on suspension and will be notified by letter from the R/PMOF. A copy of this letter will go to the Kingdom Marshal of Fence. A MOF/MOFIT of the Field will have one month to send in his report or his warrant/appointment will be revoked.

    A fully warranted MOF whose warrant is suspended shall not be allowed to hold any fencing practices, act as Marshal-in-Charge at an event, or participate in authorizations. Any warranted MOF or MOFIT whose warrant/appointment is revoked will not be eligible to hold said office again per Middle Kingdom Law XVI-810.

    The Regional MOF's and the Kingdom Marshal of Fence will be held to the same standards and will be placed on suspension and face warrant revocation if they do not file timely reports with their superior. In the case of the RMOF, the Kingdom Marshal of Fence will make notification in writing with a copy to the Earl Marshal. In the case of the Kingdom Marshal of Fence, the Earl Marshal will make notification in writing with a copy going to the Deputy Society Rapier Marshal and the Crown.

    XIV. TOURNEY REPORTS

    These must be submitted using the standard forms for the appropriate information, and shall be sent within a week of the tourney. These shall be mailed to the Kingdom Marshal of Fence, the PMOF/RMOF and the Minister of the Lists.

    The required reports are: Marshal's sign-up sheet, Summary Authorization Report, List of Fencers and, if needed, the Injury Report. The Injury report must be filed for each instance of an injury involving fencing. Preferably, these should be copies of reports generated by the presiding Chirurgeon. However, if that report is not available, the Marshal in Charge is responsible for describing the nature of the injury and the circumstances under which the injury occurred. The report should be short and concise.


    AUTHORIZATION FORMS AND REPORTS

    The Authorization Form should be completed by the Marshal in Charge of the event and given to the fencer before the end of the tournament. It is the responsibility of the fencer to send the paperwork to the Minister of the Lists (MOL) to get the authorization card. Authorization reports should be completed on the separate Summary Authorization Report form and shall include all information required as listed on the form. The Marshal in Charge will send all waivers to the MOL at the same time. All information must be legible. Authorization reports should be sent to the MOL, who will issue Authorization Cards when an authorization report is received. DO NOT SEND THESE REPORTS BY REGISTERED MAIL, BUT DO KEEP A COPY FOR LOCAL FILES. THIS SAVES TIME AND MONEY FOR ALL OF US.

    XVI. AUTHORIZATION GUIDELINES

    On a general basis, all authorizations must take place at an event listed in the Kingdom Calendar as printed in The Pale. The Kingdom Marshal of Fence or the Principality/Regional Marshal of Fence may give permission to the local MOF to hold authorizations at a fencing practice when at least TWO warranted MOFs from outside the group will be present.

    Any fencer who has not participated in SCA fencing for a year or more must reauthorize. A successful reauthorization bout (see below) in single rapier will reactivate all previous authorizations held. The fencer may attempt to reauthorize in other weapon styles instead of single rapier if s/he prefers.

    All out of kingdom fencer authorizations are considered valid in the Middle Kingdom. An authorized out of kingdom fencer who takes up residence in the Middle will have a grace period of up to three months during which time the previous kingdom's protective equipment may be worn. All weapons used by the fencer, however, must meet Middle Kingdom standards. At the end of the three months the fencer must have protective equipment that meets the Middle Kingdom standards and must have a Middle Kingdom authorization card to continue fencing in the Middle Kingdom. (The Middle Kingdom card may be issued based on a reauthorization bout; see Reauthorization Section XVII.)

    Single Rapier

    1. Is the candidate afraid to be fencing? A candidate that is constantly flinching, jerking and showing other signs of fear is not ready to be authorized.
    2. Is the candidate nervous? Discuss with the candidate the above symptoms and try to help him/her calm down. If problems persist advise candidate to try again later or at another event.
    3. Is the candidate in control of his/her body? A candidate that is constantly tripping over him/herself and others is dangerous.
    4. Can the candidate stop an aggressive act? Call hold at least once when the candidate is on the offensive.
    5. Is the candidate in control of the rapier? If parries are striking the opponent, then stop the bout and give candidate one warning. Are attacks being made inappropriately (i.e. are draw cuts actually slashes or chops?)
    6. Is the candidate hitting too hard? Ask for calibration and warn candidate.
    7. Is the candidate calling blows properly? Check clothing for excessive layers/body protection.
    8. Can the candidate parry correctly? Are all parries wild "windshield wiper" parries (see 5)? Are the parries controlled and obvious, or is the only parry a stop thrust?
    9. Does the candidate panic? Have opponent press the candidate.
    10. Does the candidate communicate with the opponent and the marshals? Candidate should be telling opponent and marshals what is happening during the bout and should respond with a verbal affirmative (not just a nod of the head or a non-verbal grunt) when asked if ready.
    11. Would you feel comfortable fencing against the candidate in a tournament?

    XVII. ADVANCED AUTHORIZATION GUIDELINES

    Rigid Parry:

    1. Candidate does not strike opponent with the parry object
    2. Candidate does not trap opponent's rapier in such a way as to break blades or injure opponent.

    Non-rigid Parry:

    1. Candidate knows rules about when can/cannot release cloak.
    2. Candidate demonstrates proper release of cloak, (if on surface where cloak cannot be released, demonstrate in static form).
    3. Candidate does not whip or flail opponent.

    Dagger:

    1. Candidate uses dagger for offense and defense.
    2. Candidate uses dagger off-hand against both opponent's weapons.
    3. Both fencers use dagger off-hand.

    Case:

    1. Candidate uses rapier off-hand against both opponent's weapons.
    2. Candidate uses full case against opponent on the ground.
    3. Both fencers use full case while both are on ground for short time.

    Schlager:

    The format of the schlager authorization shall be the same as for the single rapier authorization. Specific emphasis will be on the ability of the candidate to control their thrusts and draw cuts.

    Case of Schlager:

    The format for the case of schlager authorization will be the same as for case of rapier. As the most advanced authorization possible to a Middle Kingdom fencer the candidate must demonstrate control with both weapons at all times during the authorization.

    Reauthorization:

    A reauthorization bout will be a relatively short bout allowing the MOF's and the fencer participating in the bout to determine if the candidate should be allowed to reauthorize. It is at the discretion of the MOF in Charge of the reauthorization to require the candidate to fulfill the requirements of a standard authorization.

    Questions:

    Have you read, or had read to you, and do you understand the Middle Kingdom Rules of Rapier Fencing? (This question must be asked of all fencers before any Midrealm fencing tournament.)

    Single Rapier

    These are sample questions only; others may be asked. The MOF in charge of the authorization should chose four or five questions to confirm that the candidate has read and understands the Midrealm fencing rules.

    1. What do you do when a hold is called?
    2. What parts of the body are legal targets?
    3. What is the "kill zone" for a thrust?
    4. What is the "kill zone" for a draw cut?
    5. What is the minimum length of blade that must be used for a valid draw cut?
    6. Are tip cuts counted?
    7. Can your opponent use advanced weapons forms if you are using single rapier?
    8. What is the modern fencing blade used in a standard Middle Kingdom rapier?
    9. Who calls blows?
    10. How much overlap must there be between pieces of protective clothing?
    11. What is the maximum length for quillions? (on rapiers?) (on daggers?)
    12. What material must the body of your gloves be?

    Advanced Questions:

    Rigid Parry

    1. What is the maximum size of a buckler?
    2. Can you use a standard offensive weapon for parrying only?
    3. What must you never do with any rigid parry device?

    Non-rigid Parry

    1. What can be used to weight a cloak?
    2. What can not be used to weight a cloak?
    3. Can a cloak be released from the hand under Middle Kingdom rules?
    4. What are the rules for releasing a cloak?

    Dagger

    1. What is the only acceptable dagger blade?
    2. What is the maximum length for a dagger?
    3. Can you draw cut with a dagger?
    4. Can a cut down blade be used as a dagger?


    XIX. APPEALS PROCESS

    A fencer who wishes to use a Non-Standard Blade or Offensive Weapon ( Middle Kingdom Rapier Fencing Rules Section B9) must contact the Kingdom Marshal of Fence and request a variance. After examining the blade/weapon the KMOF will render his decision to the fencer and issue a written statement explaining the decision. A copy of this statement will also be sent to the Earl Marshal and the Crown.

    If the decision is favorable to the fencer the statement must be presented to the Marshal of Fence in Charge at any event at which the fencer wishes to use the weapon/blade. Per Section B11, the fencer's opponent must also give approval before the weapon/blade is used.

    In the case where the KMOF decides not to allow the weapon/blade the fencer may appeal in writing to the Earl Marshal and the Crown requesting a review of the decision. It will be up to the Earl Marshal and the Crown to determine how to follow up on the requested review.

    XX. EVENTS, DEMO'S and FIGHTER PRACTICES

    At least one warranted Marshal of Fence must be present to run fencing at an event or demo. A Group Marshal of Fence in Training is only allowed to run a group fencing practice.

    All fencers who participate in any fencing activity at an event or demo in the Middle Kingdom must be authorized fencers and must, upon request, be able to show the Marshal of Fence in Charge a current authorization card and SCA membership card.

    A fencer who is not yet authorized or a member of the SCA may practice his skills at a fencing practice but only at a practice. (No matter how local, a demo is not considered a practice.) All fencers, authorized or not, must be 18 years old or older. Any fencer must be able to provide legal proof of age if requested to do so by the Marshal of Fence in Charge. The MOF in Charge at any fencing practice will have all participants sign the waiver that is provided, and maintained, by the Group Seneschal.


    XXI. PROTOCOL ON TREATING INJURIES

    The following is taken from The Chirurgeon's Handbook, January 1994, pages 19-22 and is the procedure that is to followed in all cases if an injury occurs in a fencing list.

    V.C. - Combat Injuries
    The following text (i.e., the rest of section V.C.) is the joint policy statement on the procedures and protocol for treating injuries which occur in combat areas. This policy is promulgated by both the Chirurgeon General and the Marshal of the Society; it is also included in the Marshals' Handbook.

    V.C.l. - General
    It should always be remembered that when an injury occurs on the field, the primary concern is getting to and assisting the injured party. The second objective, which is no less important, is the safety of persons entering the field to help and the well-being of anyone already on the field. (For example, fighters standing around in armor in the sun could be subject to heat problems.) The Marshals and Chirurgeons will work together to assist the injured and promote the safety and well-being of all parties on the field.

    V.C.2. - When An Injury Is Suspected On The Field

    V.C.2-a. No Chirurgeon will enter the combat area until summoned by a Marshal.

    V.C.2.b. In the event of any suspected injury on the field, the Marshal should halt all fighting in the area and determine if a Chirurgeon is needed. The hold may be a "local hold" as long as the safety of the injured person may be maintained.

    V.C.2.c. Once the Chirurgeon is summoned to the field, he or she should determine the extent of the problem and apprise the Marshal of this status, consistent with the ethical constraints of patient confidentiality (see Sections V.B.3 and IX.A.4.).

    V.C.2.d. A Marshal should call for a Chirurgeon if he or she suspects that a participant is experiencing more than a momentary distress. It is an extremely serious matter to delay the application of first aid when it is needed, and Marshals who ignore injuries may be subject to revocation of their authorization to supervise combat-related activities. See section V.C.4 (below).

    V.C.3. - Procedures For Treating Injuries On The Field

    V.C.3.a. Once on the field, the Chirurgeon will determine if the injury can be tended to "in place" or if the injured party can be removed from the field and then given attention.

    V.C.3.b. No conscious person will be forced to accept treatment without his or her consent. (This is also in Section V.A.4.a; see also Section VII.C.- reports for when consent is refused.)

    V.C.3.c. Fighting cannot resume until the injured participant can continue, is removed from the field, or the provisions in Section V.C.3.e (below) are met.

    V.C.3.d. The Chirurgeon is responsible for the care of the injured party. If removal from the field is necessary, the Chirurgeon is responsible for determining and implementing the Most appropriate manner (e.g., supported by others, carried on a shield or backboard, ambulance, etc.)

    V.C.3.e. If the area is large enough and the Marshal-in-Charge on the field can provide adequate Marshals to protect the injured party and the support personnel, fighting may be moved and allowed to resume on the rest of the field. Both the Marshal-in-Charge and the responding Chirurgeon must be in agreement for this to happen.

    V.C.3.f A Chirurgeon must survey the overall situation as well as attending to the injured party, and make every effort to release as much as the field as possible so that combat may proceed. Chirurgeons who repeatedly exercise poor judgement in such matters may be barred from the field. See section V.C.4 (below). (See also Section IX.A. regarding suspension and removal from office.)

    V.C.4. - Problem Resolution Any problem resulting from lack of cooperation between Marshals and Chirurgeons will be reported to the Kingdom Earl Marshal and the Kingdom Chirurgeon (see Sections VI.B.5 and VII.A. on reporting requirements). The Kingdom Earl Marshal and/or Kingdom Chirurgeon will be responsible for taking appropriate action. The SCA channels for complaint and appeal will be followed in all cases.



    PART III -- EQUESTRIAN


    Under construction...

    • Equestrian Introduction
      • Articles of Origination of the MKEC
    • Reporting Dates
    • Officer Addresses
    • Regulations for Conduct and Tournament Procedures
    • Safety and Riding Etiquette
    • Rider Authorization Criteria
    • Rules for the Hastiludes
    • Gymkhana Activities
    • Dressage, Flat-work, Side-saddle
    • Inter-Kingdom Equestrian Competition
    • Becoming an Equestrian Marshal
    • Duties of Marshals
    • Marshal Forms and Reports
      • Society Equestrian Insurance Request Form
      • Equestrian Waiver
      • MK Equestrian Authorization Form
      • Request for Equestrian Authorization Card Form
      • Hippatrian Liaison Report Form
      • Equestrian Incident Report Form
    • Equestrian Marshal Guidelines
    • Weapons and Equipment
    • Requirements for Hosting an Equestrian Event
    • Articles and Treatises
      • Article: Why Middle Kingdom Equestrian Rules Require that Wooden Spear Shafts be Wrapped in Fiber Tape
      • A Treatise on Basic Horse Handling
    • Equestrian Event Etiquette for Non-Equestrians
    • Bibliographies
      • Bibliography of 20th Century Information on Horse Health, Illness, and Lameness
      • Bibliography of Period Equestrian References
    • Proposed Arts and Sciences Criteria
      • Animal husbandry
      • Riding (performance art)
    • Equestrian Terms of the World
    • The History and Development of Medieval Horse Breeds
    • Costume of the Military Horse
    • Pattern for Trapper
      • Instructions
      • Pattern pieces



    [an error occurred while processing this directive]