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On Tue, 8 Apr 1997, David KUIJT wrote:
> men" or even "a king among men". The Prince of Wales had essentially the
> same weight of title as the Lord of the Isles in west Scotland -- Prince
> meant ruler. It would be perfectly acceptable to describe the Kings of
> England, France, or Naples as "princes".
But I'm not sure the annalogy would continue so far as to equate to an SCA
principality. The Lordship of the Isles was seen (primarily by the Lord
of the Isles) as an independant Kingdom, not subject to any other king,
Scottish or English. Aonghais Og Mac Donald spent a good amount of time,
effort, and blood (his own and others) in proving that he was subject to
no man in the latter half of the 15th century.
But then again, almost any analogy between SCA and period political
structures and/or titles will break down before too long. I am a Lord,
and in period I would have many knights serving under me, land, and power
(possibly equivalent to the Lordship of the Isles). So, any KNights out
there want to swear fealty to me? Didn't think so.
I'm not saying this is necessarliy a bad thing, though. We wouldn't want
our political structure to be too closely related to period structures.
We'd have monarchs on the throne for 30 years or more, huge wars when they
died, ugly revolts, uprisings, and we would definitley need to findsome
cheap manual labor (read: serfs) because all of us "Lords" and "Ladies"
(we are all playing at being noblemen, right?), would never do any meanial
tasks like digging sump holes, setting up feasts, cleaning toilets, etc.
There is a good reason why our political system differs from period ones.
Real politics isn't a lot of fun. (If it is for you, seek professional
help). And I think that it is when SCA politics starts to simulate real
life politics a little too closely that people's feelings get hurt,
emotions flare up, and people get nasty. If we keep in mind that the end
goal in any SCA political debate should be "how can we best play this
game," then we will be doing all right.
I NEVER argue politics (SCA or otherwise) because I have figured out that
the best way for me to play this game is just to do my thing no matter
what the "politics" of the day are. I'm gauranteed to have fun that way,
if my enjoyment of the game does not depend on political entities like
baronies, cantons, kings, or what-have-you.
While I'm talking about kings and politics, we were discussing the idea of
loyalty and fealty earlier on this list. I think it is interesting that
the Declaration of Arbroath (1320) declares that the Scottish nobles would
be loyal to Lord Robert (they referred to their king as "Lord" here), only
so long as he behaved himself (i.e. did not turn out to be a tyrrant like
Edwards pt. I or II). If he acted in such a way that he fell out of
favour, the nobles promised to rebell against him and overthrow him just
like Edward. So their oaths of loyalty only went as far as the King
served their interests (in this case, a free and independant nation). The
King was given his power by the nobles, and they had the right to take it
away. This is a far cry from an absolute monarchy.
ANyway, since I have already rambled away from the original subject of
this post (the Lordship of the Isles), I might as well ramble a little
further and say to Dafydd (I quoted his post originally, remember?), THANK
YOU for inventing the game of Cambok. We have enjoyed it tremedously down
here, and has definitley added to the fun we are now capable of having and
still be clothed!
Before I say anything more....
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- From: David KUIJT <kuijt@umiacs.UMD.EDU>