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Poster: David KUIJT <kuijt@umiacs.umd.edu>

Unto all the gentle folk gathered here at Cheapside and the Rose,
Earl Dafydd ap Gwystl gives fair greetings and wishes for good health. 

At Pennsic and since then a number of people have approached me wanting to
discuss the idea of a Northern Principality. I've been open to the idea,
so I started asking around to see if there was sufficient serious
broad-based interest to be worth proceeding.  Although I certainly haven't
talked to everyone, it is clear that there is enough support and interest
to develop the idea into a proposal, and eventually put the proposal
before the people in the affected region for them to vote on it.

To aid the discussion, at least on the net, Lord Alaric Luther has
volunteered to maintain an email discussion list, similar to the Merry
Rose.  This is an open list, unmoderated; anyone from anywhere in the
Kingdom can subscribe to it.  Details on how to subscribe are appended to
the end of this note.

There will also be a website up in the next week or so to facilitate
discussion and act as a central information hub.  Finally, as things
proceed, there will be some sort of a printed bulletin or newsletter to
keep people informed who are not on the net.

NOTE!  Serious interest in the idea is not the same as a guarantee that it
will happen.  After putting a lot of thought into it (for several years),
I think it would be a good idea. But other people may think differently,
and all reasonable opinions deserve consideration.

I would like to find out what people think, especially the people that I
haven't talked to yet.  You may email me in private or in public as you
feel comfortable.  Again, I want to hear your opinion and concerns
regardless of whether you are for it, against it, or undecided.  My hope
for the eventual web page is to be able to post representative opinions
regardless of which side of the issue they are on.

So, what is the process, then?  Simple enough.  The plan is to create a
proposal for a Principality (Geography, Arms, Name, Laws, whatever) then
to put this proposal to a general vote in the region.  Note again -- a
proposal is not a principality.  The final decision on whether or not the
region accepts a proposal is up to the people. 

How will this proposal be created?  With as much input from people as
possible.  I'm attempting to organize an initial meeting some time in
January to create a steering committee.  Once there is a site and date and
time, I'll get the information out.  Interested parties should attempt to

In the above paragraph I'm ignoring issues of the legalistic requirements
for an SCA principality for clarity of presentation.  The requirements of
the Board of Directors are pretty simple, and the region in question has
no problem in meeting them -- there is enough population, there are enough
peers, there are enough events, there are enough experienced officers,
that sort of thing. 

One of the most common queries about Principalities is whether or not it
would go Kingdom eventually, and split off.  There are some Principalities
that have never gone Kingdom -- the Mists, for example, which shares many
similarities with the region discussed.  But I don't think that we should
try to force anything -- if the region wants to go Kingdom five years down
the road, that is a question that should be considered _then_, not now.
And if it does not, then we should not try to force it into that path now. 
But that is just my opinion. 

What is the region in question?  That depends on what groups want to join,
within limits; one of the issues that a proposal must resolve is where
the borders are to be.  This is one of the areas where a lot of input from
people will be necessary.

The base area for a good Principality would be NoVa (Stierbach/Ponte Alto) 
and all the Maryland/DC groups.  The population centers of every group in
that region are within about 1 hour drive of the central point of the
region.  (In travel distance the central point is somewhere near where
I-95 heads north from the Washington Beltway).

What about Caer Mear/Isenfir?  These two groups are the next-closest to
the region discussed, about 2-2.5 hours from its center.  The area will be
a viable principality without them, but there are many connections between
Caer Mear/Isenfir and the groups just to their north.  As I see it, the
answer should be left to them -- what do they want to do? 

I'll include my reasons for favoring the formation of a Principality in a
later note; this note is long enough already.

As a final comment, Principality discussions can hit nerves.  Please be
polite.  Open discussion is always good, even when we disagree.

Sincere Regards,

Dafydd ap Gwystl

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