On September 16th in the Shire of Ballachlagan, Prince Gareth and Princess Juliana will be crowned King and Queen of Æthelmearc. Mistress Arianna of Wynthrope interviewed the Prince and Princess to help you learn more about them and their plans for their upcoming reign.
Please tell us about Your personae.
Gareth: When I joined the SCA, I wanted to be a Scotsman of the 2nd Crusade, which was in the 12th century. That’s why I chose Gareth as my name. Since then, I’ve become interested in Roman history as well as early Greek history from around 400 BC.
Juliana: My name is 14th century English but shortly after I chose it I became interested in Viking culture. Because of Gareth, I frequently wear Roman garb, but I’m not tied to any one time or place.
What do You do in the real world?
G: I’m a Methodist minister, which is why I sometimes have to leave events on Saturday night to be home in time to work on Sunday mornings.
J: I’m a high school science teacher, mostly teaching biology.
What sort of things have You done in the SCA?
G: I’ve been in the SCA for 21 years; Pennsic 46 was my 20th War. As many people know, I’m primarily an armorer, but I also enjoy woodworking, leatherworking, making jewelry, and doing scrolls including some in etched copper. I’m a heavy weapons marshal, former thrown weapons marshal, and recently I’ve been training to become a rapier marshal. I joined the SCA in Blackstone Mountain where I served as Knight Marshal before moving to Misty Highlands.
J: I’ve been in the SCA for 16 years. I received my Laurel in fiber arts, specifically Norse and brocade tablet weaving. My Fleur was for embroidery and Norse garb. I also enjoy making scrolls, though I think I’m a better illuminator than calligrapher. In addition, I’ve been a heavy fighter, a thrown weapons marshal, done combat archery, and autocrated events. Between us, Gareth and I have held most of the offices in our Shire of Misty Highlands over the years.
What are some of Your goals for Your reign?
We’d like to encourage the arts, which are really important to us. For example, we’ve been very impressed with the efforts of the artisans making us garb under the supervision of Mistress Elisabeth Johanna von Flossenberg. She’s gathered artisans from a variety of disciplines to make us multiple sets of clothing, and we plan to recognize their work by announcing their names in court at each event.
We’d also like to see more newcomer growth. We encourage people to help newcomers in as many ways as they can. Our household, Sable Maul, was built on new people, and we make a practice of providing the things they need, like garb and armor.
We would love to see as many people as possible to attend Gulf Wars. Gareth first attended Gulf Wars because King Henri gave an inspiring speech about the camaraderie and great deeds to be done there, and he’s been back most years since. Camping together at Gulf Wars with people from throughout Æthelmearc fostered a greater sense of unity and family than we get camping as separate shires, baronies, and households at events like Pennsic. In addition, the more people we bring to Gulf Wars, the more we build our Kingdom’s renown. Gulf Wars is very different from Pennsic. It feels more like a true medieval village, with a lot of permanent structures that help provide an immersive experience not only for the martially inclined, but also artisans and performers at the Green Dragon Inn, equestrian, falconry, and other cool things.
This year at Gulf Wars there will be a Crusader theme, which is right up Gareth’s alley. There will also be a Viking Deed battle with Danes vs. Saxons, like the Battle of Hastings at Pennsic, where Sir Marek will be the commander of the Danes. Fighters are requested to bring gifts; Gareth will be making arm rings to give away. Each participant is expected to bring “loot” in proportion to their rank, so we’ll need to have a lot of gifts. And of course it gives Gareth an excuse to make yet another new set of armor, not that he needs an excuse….
We also plan to travel extensively, though living on the southern edge of the Kingdom will make for some long trips. It’s about 12 hours from Misty Highlands to Coppertree, for example.
What would You like the populace to do to help You during Your reign?
Our website has information about the events we’re attending, and we welcome any type of assistance from the populace, most especially award recommendations.
We want people to think about the experienced SCA members who helped them when they first joined, and then “pay it forward” to new people joining now. The SCA can sometimes have too much headbutting and worrying over getting “cookies.” Let’s focus on having fun and helping each other. Being gracious to others is a gift you give yourself.