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Poster: "Jessica S. Rechtschaffer" <grjsr.ors@mhs.unc.edu>

Greetings everyone:

Aelfgar writes: 
>Second, I wonder if a change of definition might be helpful. It occurs 
to me
>that our tournament fighting, as currently defined, is closer to the 
>gladitorial games of ancient Rome than to the tourneys of High Chivalric
>period. The bouts are contests to the death, where a _killing blow_ 
>the victor.

I agree.  Since we are trying to re-create medieval tournaments why on 
earth are we "fighting to the death?"  Tournaments "a pleasance" (of 
peace/pleasure) were fought with the intent to subdue one's opponent, not 
to kill because a dead noble is worth as much as a dead peasant which was 
nothing!    Not even in tournaments "a outrance" (with weapons of war)  
were fights to the death.  The only time when two combantants went into a 
list with the sure intent of killing each other was a judicial duel.  
Contrary to popular belief, judicial combat was a rare occurance.  
Personally, I feel pretty stupid falling down "dead" on the field.  I'd 
rather kneel to my victor and yield in proper medieval fashion when I 
receive a "defeating" shot.

If we are interested in trying to make our tournaments simulate the 
medieval ones better, we should modify our language and our style of 
tournaments.  Our wars are closer to grand melees of tournaments than 
real medieval battles.  Why not treat it as such?  Oh, I know, it's far 
more fun to call our wars "wars"  - it gets the adrenaline going.  As my 
friend from Ansteorra said at the 'Pennsic Faire' that year, "I didn't 
drive all the way from Oklahoma to go to a Faire!"  Still, why use 
improper terminology?  It doesn't change the whole atmosphere of the 
event or what the event is about.  If anything, it may help heal some 
wounds that we have just discussed last week.  

Now, some may read this and say, "This person is dreaming, I think that's 
the most idiotic thing I've read." Others will say, "Nice idea but it 
will never work.  People won't go for it."  We've all been saying good 
things lately, how we have to improve attitudes and calibration but 
nothing will happen IF WE DON'T TAKE ACTION NOW!!!  I find it sad and 
ironic that the best thing the SCA recreates is the conservativism and 
unwillingness to change of the middle ages.  Look around, it's pretty 
astounding.  Not all SCA traditions and rules are sacred and untouchable. 
 We shouldn't keep re-enacting something that is historically wrong.  
It's like insisting that that guns were at the Battle of Hastings.  

There are lots of people on the pinnacle of this kingdom who read the 
merry rose.  Here in the SCA people tend to follow a trickle down effect 
from the VIP's in this organization.  So, you guys on top - yeah you, I'm 
taking to you,  have the most influence on instituting change in this 
kingdom!  Back up words and do it!  And by the way, it's not just the 
"big wigs" who have the right to implement change.  Every member from 
peasant to king has a say and should voice it.

Well, I've been saying these views for years now and even if things don't 
change, I'll still hold these opinions.  

Well, for what it's worth, that's my opinion.  Have a nice weekend 

Lyanna ferch Gwynhelek
Jessica Rechtschaffer
Registrar and Information Manager
The Graduate School
UNC - Chapel Hill
email: grjsr.ors@mhs.unc.edu
phone: (919) 966-2612

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