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Fealty (fwd)

Poster: clevin@ripco.com (Craig Levin)

Stephan dixit:

> I would like to learn more about fealty, both the society kind and the
> historical kind.  I would like to see how they compare and differ.  Is
> it correct to assume that the fealty of the society is the most accepted
> version?  I understand that fealty is very personal.  I am in fact
> squired to Duke Richard, a commitment I take very seriously.

SCA fealty has little, if anything, to do with mediaeval fealty.
First, we confuse it, on occasion, with homage, which, to be
true, is very easy to do. Second, aside from our landed barons,
the usual bond between a lord and his men-land-cannot be used.
Third, since we've more or less removed religious practices
from the SCA's culture-for better or for worse-the whole
_universe_ within which these vows functioned is basically
moribund. For a daunting, but thorough, examination of both early
and late mediaeval ideas on what both homage and fealty involved,
I suggest Susan Reynold's _Fiefs_ _and_ _Vassals_ for the early,
and Littleton's _Tenures_ for a late mediaeval English
examination. As a _vade_ _mecum_ for the conceptual universe,
Lewis' _The_ _Discarded_ _Image_ is dated but fun to read, Keen's
_Chivalry_ is a must-read, and nothing beats actually getting
into the actual books and letters of mediaeval people themselves,
some of which are on-line.

Pedro de Alcazar, AoA
Barony of Storvik, Atlantia
Pursuivant Extraordinary and Junior Minion
Or, six Castles Vert within a Bordure Gules semy of Roundels Or
Craig Levin
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