This month we’re going to make a flailing witch doctor target.
Take three pieces of cardboard, sized 2.5 feet by 3 feet, and glue them together to make a single, thicker piece.
Once again lay down the stencil of the Ninja that we made last month, but this time add a paper Tiki mask. You can buy them at any Dollar store.
Trace the ninja body onto the cardboard, but glue in the Tiki mask in place of its head. This will make him look like a witch doctor.
Cut out the eyes of the Tiki mask and glue oversized googly eyes in their place.
You can add some muscles with a black Magic Marker and then add some white paint to give the illusion of a dead person – after all, he is a witch doctor.
Cut apart his neck, arm, wrist, and knees, then loosely tie the cut edges of the parts of his body together. This way, when he is hit with an arrow, he will flail away like a wild man. His weapons are a skull “ball and chain” and a bone flail. Add a grass skirt so he looks like a real witch doctor.
This target will be at the Castle archery muster next month on the day after Coronation, so once again please come defend the castle from this fierce invader!
This month’s safety tip: at the Castle Muster, we’ll have a very complex novelty shoot so as you keep one eye on your target, keep an ear out for the Marshall in Charge. Always be ready for a call of “HOLD!”
The Barony-Marche of the Debatable Lands invites you to a Regional Muster
celebrating Archery, Thrown Weapons, Youth Fighting, and Arts & Sciences at
the Castle home of Their Royal Highnesses of Æthelmearc, Byron and Ariella,
on April 10th. This is the day after Their Coronation. The muster will begin
at 10:00 in the morning and continue until 5:00 pm.
The archery and thrown weapons ranges will be open at 10:00 am and archery from the towers, led by THLord Deryk Archer, will begin at 1:00 pm.
The main archery goal this day is to shoot and submit rounds for the
Gwyntarian Winter Challenge which closes later that week. There will also be
training if we have enough marshals. The Barony’s loaner gear will be
Please bring something for a pot luck. We’re going to be there all day, so
let’s eat. Pop, water, plates, bowls, and utensils will all be provided.
Their Highnesses have asked that you dress in garb for the day.
This month’s installment of On Target is about building a spinning ninja.
One day as I was shopping in a video store, I found a beat-up cardboard ninja. I took it home and used it as a stencil.
I zip-tied together some white foam board and a plastic political sign, traced, and then cut out the ninja.
Next, I colored in the ninja on the white side (you may recognize Storm Shadow from the GI Joe movies) and on the plastic political sign I used camouflage tape.
Next, I drilled a hole at the top center and bottom center, tying a length of masonry cord to it so the masonry cord goes from top to bottom.
On the bottom, add a piece of rope tie and some rubber bands to use as a shock absorber. That way, when the arrow strikes the target, the target will bounce and not break.
The ninja will rotate from front to back. If you strike him on the white side you score, but if you strike him on the camouflage side he has dodged the arrow.
I don’t recommend this target for competition, just for fun.
This month’s safety tip: start checking your arrows and making sure the tips, the fletchings, and the nocks are all in good condition, then check your bowstring to make sure it’s not frayed.
Also, put the spring archery muster at Their Highnesses’ castle on April 10 on your calendar! We’re going to be repelling an invasion. Their Highnesses will have been crowned King and Queen the day before the muster, and we may never again get the opportunity to defend Their Majesties’ castle.
Each month, the Æthelmearc Archery Website features an unusual archery challenge, known as Anastasie’s Challenge. (Hint: the February challenge involves hearts.) Participants can send their challenge scores in and see their ranking on the challenge page. The Gazette caught up with the instigator, Baroness Anastasie deLamoure.
What gave you the idea for the monthly Archery Challenge? I have noticed that some archers, myself included, are getting fixated on the round target. There are so many other things that you can shoot at that can be more challenging. Try hitting a bell that is in a 3 by 3 inch box! Granted, there are no ranks for this on a society level like the Gwyntarian challenge or with royal rounds. It is simply meant to challenge and possibly get the archers that are shooting only royal rounds and the Gwyntarian challenge to try something new.
Have you seen archery growing in our Kingdom? Boy that is a hard one. I only say it is hard because for every one archer that is only shooting royal rounds and the Gwyntarian challenge, there is probably another one or two shooting fun shoots with no recorded scores. Without some way of tracking who is shooting, there is no way of knowing the exact numbers.
We do have groups with archers but no marshals, and so we can foster growth by actively encouraging new marshal training in the groups where there is that need.
What has changed in archery since you have been in the SCA? There was a time when archers’ ranks were posted and it was widely announced when archers became ranked or moved up a rank. These are all things that encourage archery and archers to shoot.
When the range was moved at Pennsic, it was moved further out of the minds of people and became harder to get to. It is understandable as to why it was moved, but it is the one marshal activity that is out in the middle of nowhere.
What was your first event? My first event was Delftwood’s Baronial Champs in 2004.
What made you want to stay? A sheer act of kindness is what made me stay. When we arrived at the event we didn’t know about the attempt at garb or anything at all. A member of Delftwood came out to where we were sitting, watching the goings on, and said he thought he had some tunics that might fit us. He then offered the comforts of his day shade and his Turkish coffee.
What would you encourage anyone interested in archery to do? They should reach out to their local marshal. If they do not have a local marshal, then they should reach out to their Regional marshal and they should be able to point them to a practice they can attend.
Anything else you’d like to add? Archery is one of the few marshal activities that anyone can do. It doesn’t matter if you are a youth or an individual on the other end of the age spectrum or if you are physically handicapped. You can have your crossbows cocked for you, and you can even have someone retrieve your arrows for you. This is a marshal activity that is handicap-friendly. Come and join us on the range!
I just want to say I hope everybody had an awesome New Year! I want to start the year by bringing back an old game: archery poker. I like to cut the cards in half to make the game quite challenging. The cards are glued to a cardboard backing.
There are two ways to set up the board. One is to just throw the cards down and spread them out however they land.
The other method is to organize them in 6 columns of 9. Since that makes 54 cards, you have to add the two jokers as wild cards.
The way I like to set up the board is to put the four aces in the four corners. Also, make sure there’s plenty of room between the cards so an arrow cannot hit two cards at the same time. This also means shooters may miss cards completely.
Now you have to decide what game of poker you wish to play. I prefer five card draw, which means each archer gets 8 arrows and throws out the three least valuable shots. An archer may not score on the same card twice in a given round.
This is an all-day game – the archers shoot until they get a hand they like and then turn the hand in to the Marshall in charge. The archer may not turn in another hand unless he is knocked off by another shooter. If he’s outshot, then he may shoot again for a higher hand. The scoring hands are as follows in ascending order of value:
3 of a kind
a full house
four of a kind
a straight flush
a Royal flush
five-of-a-kind (only in a wildcard game)
This month’s safety tip: stay in shape! Every day, draw the bow at least 10 times and hold it for a 5-count each time you draw. This will keep those muscles in your back and arms in shape. Remember not to dry fire it (loose the string without an arrow on it).
Also, I would like to say that at this year’s spring archery muster at Their Highnesses’ castle, we will be repelling an invading army. This year’s moving target will be a man coming up a ladder to take the wall, so you’ll get to shoot him down.
As always, I look forward to some feedback. If there’s something you need to know, or would like to see or shoot at, please feel free to ask me on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/joseph.bartlow.
Master Thomas Spence Colby recently published a book called The Roving Archery Course: A guide for course planning, construction, and appreciation that’s available for purchase on Amazon. Mistress Arianna of Wynthrope caught up with Spence and coerced him into answering a few questions.
Being Spence, of course, he had to start with some humor. And continue with more humor. And end with even more humor…
The status of the manual… I wrote the bloody thing to be cheap so I could hand them out at archery events — it was intended to be handbook, not the next great American novel. Perhaps I was seduced by the thought of fame and glory (although it’s been so long since I’ve been seduced it might have just been acid reflux, who knows?), but the book stands as it is. It will serve the purpose it was intended to serve. It won’t serve any porpoises, however. I didn’t use waterproof paper.
Please tell us about your persona and a little bit about your SCA career.
I was named Thomas at my christening, for St. Thomas à Beckett, in the year of Our Lord 1300, but my mother always called me Spence. She was a frail and sickly maid from Brittany and soon retired to a convent to pray and meditate, leaving me to follow my father, Donald of Colby, to the wars. He was a sworn archer to the Crown and fought and garrisoned throughout the Scottish lands and across France. He taught me to pull a true bow from an early age, but before I could join the archery company, I carried arrows to the ranks of archers. Later, I got to stand beside those sturdy men and learned the art of battle in action.
I was in command of a Company of my own when my father was struck and badly wounded during battle at a small village named Crecy. He lingered for years before he finally departed this veil of tears. By then, I had accrued enough honors and treasure to buy a small farm and retire with a wife and raise my son.
My other life is remarkably the same (it makes it easier to remember the details…) My mother didn’t name me Spence, but short of that, everything else basically the same. Okay, I didn’t shoot too many Frenchmen or Scots, but I did follow my dad to many archery shoots and learned the art from him. We shot many ‘field courses’ and spent many hours ridding the woods behind our house of invading stumps. I learned much about roving courses from him.
Master Thomas Spence Colby with his cartoon alter ego, Spooki
As far as the SCA career… I had a career? Huh! Where do I look for my 401(k) earnings? I started out as a fighter. Okay, I started out as a pell for the fighters. The fractured skull should have told me two things – one, never block a shot with your head, and two, it’s time to hang up the armor. But it took a broken collar bone six months later to pound the lesson home. Surprisingly, it wasn’t the broken bone as much as the fact that I won the archery competition right afterward (I only won because I refused to go to the ER and every time I pulled the bow back I tended to scream piercingly and distract the other archers… DON’T shoot with a busted collarbone, it stings a bit!) That was when I realized that even with flinging arrows into the next country and sobbing like a baby with each shot, I wasn’t too bad at this shooting thing. Don’t know why I never thought about it before… guess I just had my heart set on being a fighter.
Once I decided to forgo the sword and take up the string, I discovered the art I learned from my father was something I was fairly good at…. not the shooting bit; I still suck at shooting, but the art of setting up a course and crafting targets that were different from the standard. I started to offer my services as an archery marshal for local events and set up the first few ‘roaming ranges’ most folk had ever seen or shot. They proved to be a huge hit. Why fight it? Sure beats getting hammered by bigger guys in smelly armor – I could offer something I was good at and not go home after the weekend covered in bruises and limping badly.
The roving courses got attention – I first was asked to be a local marshal, then Shire Captain, Regional Marshal, and for a while, the first Archery Commander of the new Kingdom of Aethelmearc. I was the principle of the new Order of the Scarlet Guard and I’m proud to say, holder of the East Kingdom’s vaunted Order of the Sagittarius. I had more respect and honors that I ever did as a corpse on the list field. I think I made the right choice, there.
What prompted you to write a book about roving archery courses?
Well, I can say it wasn’t greed – I cut the profit margin so I could offer this book to people without much coin of the realm in their pouch. I spent over four decades pulling a bow and pulling arrows from trees, the ground, the neighbor’s car, and I realized that I had acquired a decent amount of understanding of the skills required to set and run a course… why make someone else go through the trial and error period if I could ease the trip? Besides, there might be marshals willing to try a roving course but unsure how to start. This was a service I could provide to the SCA – much of what I learned about the fun roving course I picked up doing them in the Society’s good grace. This was a way to give something back.
There’s a story I like to tell about how I got started with making roving courses in the SCA. When I buried the armor and picked up the bow everyone was shooting Royal Rounds. I find them boring… great practice, but we were losing archers from sheer boredom. I suggested that I set up a roving course and offer that at the next event. We had a blast. I was asked to do more courses.
In due time, I attracted the notice of archers from distant shires and far baronies, and they started to travel the long distances to come and shoot one of my courses. This made me a bit nervous… remember that no one was doing these courses in the SCA except me as far as I knew.
I had agreed to set up a course for a local event and just before the event weekend I found out that the Big Man himself was coming to see this roving course thing. The Principality Archery Captain!A Grand Master Bowman and in charge of all the archery activities in the area. Yoicks! I’d never met the man, but I knew if I screwed up in his sight, I’d never marshal another course and I might even have my birthday taken away. Sweaty palms time.
If I remember correctly, the course was some dumb thing, ‘Smurfin’ Safari’… yup, we were shooting at blue-skinned wee folk, and I’m not talking Picts here. I figured that was the first strike against me, right there. Lawdy, Spence…smurfs?
Robert the Grey turned out to a wonderful, soft-spoken gentle who put me at ease very quickly, a truer gentleman I’d be hard pressed to find. He shot the course, seemed to be having fun, and didn’t rip away my warrant or anything. But there was a problem…
While Robert certainly shot up to his reputation, he didn’t place first… he was beaten out by a mere Bowmen with an Royal Round average of 32. Oops! I expected the roof to come down hard on me for that! I expected him to blame the course, the weird shooting situations, the targets, me….
Robert approached me and asked the scores, and I confessed he didn’t win… and his true honorable spirit immediately showed. He grinned in that easy way he has and told me that he deserved to lose – he hadn’t shot well and the Bowman was obviously a better shot at unmarked ranges and shooting through trees and brush – which are markedly absent on most Royal Round ranges. Robert slapped me on the back and told me to keep doing these courses; it had pointed out a flaw in his ability and in his opinion, more gentles could benefit by becoming a more well-rounded archers and shooting at something other than Royal Rounds’ concentric circles on flat, clear ground.
I vowed to do just that, and this book is a direct outgrowth of that promise.
How do you design a good archery target?
Oh, sure, I tell YOU and you tell someone else, and soon no one will need to BUY the book! I’m tempted to say “Just buy the bloody manual, oy?” but I guess it’s a fair question, albeit one that begs a long and involved answer. (Like a BOOK length answer…)
Okay, the secret I can share is this, and I can share this because I was constantly saying it to marshals… This ain’t the bloody Louvre, it’s an archery range! Art we don’t need – EVERYONE is creative or artistic enough to whip up a target that will more than serve the purpose. It needs only to be large enough for archers shooting at it to stand a chance to hit it, it needs to stop arrows, and have clearly defined scoring zones. I devote much of the book to making the targets for the course – lots of hints and help. I was known for making very fancy and elaborate targets but that’s not the real key to the best roving course.
What are the most important principles for creating a good roving range?
If I keep giving stuff away for free, why ask anyone to buy the book?! Sigh… okay, I mentioned it, so fair question. I compare designing and planning a good roving course to making a good stew. You need a good hearty broth that permeates the entire dish and flavors everything. In the roving course, the broth is safety. It is foremost and constant. Of all the wonderful activities we do in the SCA, this is the one that uses not only real weapons, but weaponry designed to reach out and touch someone further than an axe throw away! Safety is a constant concern and flavors EVERY decision.
A good stew needs a good mix of vegetables. This corresponds to the actual planning and lay-out of the course. The mix and variety of the targets, ranges, and shooting situations make the course interesting and challenging. Too many peas and the stew is unbalanced – too many shots from the same distance, and the course is boring. This section of the design is the real key to a good course.
NOT the meat! Meat being the targets… I can show you a course that will dazzle the most veteran archer and not use a single ‘flashy’ target. Ever hear of a vegetable soup? The targets are simply something to use to build the course and add depth – after all, while I can do a crackerjack course shooting at tree stumps or plastic bags stuffed with dead leaves, who wouldn’t whether be shooting French knights or dragons? I diagram the ways in the book to make a good target to dress the course with flair.
And last, but not least, a good stew would be edible without seasonings and spices, but flat, plain. The roving course is the same. I mention in the book some of the little things that boost the appeal of the course for the archers, like a water stop, scoring systems, signs, games and stories. This is the finishing touch for a course that can be quite a wonder for the gentles shooting it.
All these things need to plotted and planned, but it is easier than you might think.
What do you think most roving archery courses get wrong?
Seriously, I think the fact that many roving courses never happen is the biggest wrong thing. I’ve seen some poor courses, and one or two that were borderline unsafe (none of these are SCA – we have a great record for doing that right) but even a lousy course can a ton of fun. If I had to pick the most common boo-boos, I’d pick lack of variety in the course, shaky attention to safety, and lack of imagination and daring. ‘Lack of vision’ can apply to some courses I’ve shot – so many missed opportunities on the course, I want to cry! I restrain myself quite often from begging the people in charge to please allow me to help them set the course… didn’t you see that GREAT shot through the dead tree, across the swamp, and over the big pile of rocks?! Okay, granted, that’s not getting it wrong, but it is to weep for lost chances!
Do SCA archery roving ranges differ much from mundane ones? If so, how?
Yup, and how! The basic set-ups are the same, more or less, but the fact that the SCA has the Marshal running the course is a GREAT bonus and an opportunity that yields some excellent courses for us. The mundane courses are set up for a group of archers to wander through on their own. That can limit the possibilities for both course concept and target ideas. The SCA courses can really flower with a guide to the course tagging along – story courses, special scoring, theme related activities, and of course, let’s not forget… the SCA can shoot at Frenchmen! The mundane courses tend to stick with hunting animals as the concept and even there they can be strange and lack some sense of purpose – I swear I’ve shot at a deer, followed in succession by a deer, a turkey, another turkey, a deer, a turkey, a turkey, ahh! Look! Another turkey!, and finally a ‘beer’… a standing black bear that they replaced the head with a buck. They’re known to travel in six-packs. Okay, that showed some imagination (or the fact they were running out of targets and were scraping the bottom of the barrel) but in the SCA? Oh my! We can hunt mythical critters, save the princess, pretend to be Robin Hood, or re-fight the battle of Agincourt. WE can re-enact, be an actor in the story, live our wildest fantasies (the ones about archery, at least) and shoot for the sky! (Not literally, it’s tough to find the arrows again and the scoring rubric is the pits).We can be so much more creative and wonderful!
Did you plan to market the book toward a general audience? The description on its Amazon page has a lot of SCA references; are you expecting that most of the buyers will be Scadians?
Expecting? Perhaps hoping is the better term! I spent many wonderful years perfecting my abilities with setting up courses at events; it is only reasonable to draw on that experience. But the book is aimed at anyone that is looking to set up a course – at an event, a demo, a Boy Scout camp, local shooting club, or in the back yard. I tried to not be too oriented towards one group and stick with the core concepts. Which proved rather tricky, actually… a high speed machine with training wheels is a completely different weapon from my old stick and string and offering hints on set-up can be frustrating. The tricks that will dazzle a traditional archer will pose no concerns at all for someone using a laser rangefinder and a lighted four-power scope on a precision arrow-projecting machine. But I tried to make this manual useful for everyone that uses arrows. Except road sign painters.
I hope that every Archery Marshal gets a copy – it will help them plan better courses, I think. It is a neat and beneficial thing to offer a roving course at an event and fun to run as well. Okay, tiring… but very satisfying in the long run. And every archer should read the book and should learn the tricks as well – if for no other reason than to learn to appreciate a well-founded course when they shoot it. Or to beat one that isn’t….
The book is available on Amazon.com. It is a Print-on-Demand book, which means that it might require a week to get a copy in the mail (yes, THAT fast!). It is a trade paper 6X9”, 108 pages, crammed full of B&W illustrations, diagrams, and cartoons, and includes a helpful (sorta) glossary of archery terms. It is also a good read for anyone that’s not really interested in setting up a course but loves archery. I tell secrets.
This month’s edition of On Target from THLord Deryk Archer is about shooting at an archer’s cross. This is a very period shoot.
First, color in a cross on a piece of foamboard. I prefer to make the arms of the cross approximately 4 inches wide. Attach the target to your usual straw or foam target butt.
After you get some experience shooting at the target as it looks above, cut the cross out, reinforce the foamboard with several layers of cardboard to prevent blow throughs, and nail a stake to each side of the target. Hammer the stakes into the ground and place another target behind the cross target, approximately 3 feet beyond the open cross. I used a target from the Highlander shoot. You can draw bricks on the foamboard around the cut out cross to better simulate a castle wall.
Scoring is 1 point per hit. Again, this simulates attacking a castle with arrow slits.
This month safety tip: during the Christmas season, drive as safely as you would shooting on the range.
Greetings unto the Archery Marshals of Æthelmearc,
In an effort to unify archery within our Kingdom, all archery marshals will need to contact their Regional Marshals for a quick test on the new archery rules. This test will cover content from the Society Archery Rules found here as well as the 2015 version of the Æthelmearc Archery Rules found here.
The test may be given orally over the phone or in person at the Regional Marshal’s descretion. Marshals At Large and Group Marshals will have until Thanksgiving to complete this task. Those who do not complete this testing will have their warrants revoked.
Baron Edward Harbinger
Æthelmearc Archer General
(Kingdom Deputy Earl Marshal for Target Archery)
This report was compiled by Mistress Arianna of Wynthrope with assistance from O’no Kuma, Maistir Brandubh o Donnghaile, Master Alaric MacConall, Lady Katheryne Täntzel, Lord Robert MacEwin of Thornhill, Lady Melodia Beaupel, and Lord Robert Pour Maintenant.
Though the sun played peekaboo through clouds that brought intermittent cold winds and even the occasional tiny snowflake, the 600th anniversary of the Battle of Agincourt proved more fun for the folk of Æthelmearc than it did for the French on that fateful day in October, 1415.
The morning started with the Court of the Imperator, Magnus Tindal, in which he bade THLord Morien MacBain set himself on vigil, there to receive the counsel of the peers and populace regarding his elevation to the Order of the Pelicans.
TOYS FOR TOTS TOURNEY
Martial activities began with the Toys for Tots charity tournament organized by Brillo el Dragon for his high school senior project. 15 fighters participated in a bear pit tournament that lasted almost 2 hours, contributing toys and cash to the charity. Sir Vladimir Mechnik, known as Sir Vlad Two Swords, was the victor, but the children who will received Christmas gifts as a result of the tournament will be the true winners.
The Toys for Tots Tourney. Photo by Mistress Arianna of Wynthrope.
YOUTH CHAMPION’S TOURNEY
At the same time, Their Excellencies Liam and Constance presided over their Youth Combat Champions’ Tournament, which had five young gentles similarly competing in a bear pit for the right to be named baronial champion.
Their Excellencies address the youth fighters. Photo by Arianna.
In addition to receiving points for winning and losing bouts, the fighters had the opportunity to receive bonus points from the Baron, Baroness, and Marshals for chivalry, sportsmanship, and feats of valor or humor. This resulted in not only many points of honor, but also some entertainingly dramatic deaths and a fair number of quotes from Monty Python. His Majesty stopped by and commended the youth fighters for their prowess and camaraderie. He also bestowed upon the newest youth fighter, Danny, a mug in appreciation of Danny’s skill in the Kingdom Youth Championship Tournament held the previous week at Crown Tournament. In the end, Ulfr, who had just stepped down as kingdom champion a week before, was the winner and named Baronial Youth Champion.
Ulfr vs. Danny in the Baronial Youth Combat Champion’s Tourney. Photo by Arianna.
Once the youth fighters left the field to hold tavern brawl melees at the picnic tables on the other side of the feast hall, the fencers took the list.
For the dozen or so rapier combatants, Lord Cyrus Augur ran a round robin tournament with each round being best of three fights using progressive weapons forms: single sword, sword and parry object (or just sword), and then two weapons. Master Will Parris was the victor.
THLady Fiora vs. Lord Balan. Photo by Arianna.
After the tourney, there were melees, including a free-for-all called Paranoia. Fencers who were killed were out of the melee until the fencer who had killed them was also killed.
Lady Lucia vs. Lord Michael Gladewyne. Photo by Arianna.
After a tasty lunch crafted by Lord Takamatsu Gentarou Yoshitaka and his kitchen crew, the tournament to choose the Debatable Lands Thrown Weapons Champion was hosted by last year’s Baronial Champion, Lord Halldorr Bildr Fintanson. There were 8 competitors vying for this honor, and all knew well the challenge the cold weather presented to the already daunting task. A qualifying round was held, after which 5 throwers were deemed worthy. The championship field included all manner of experience levels, from the most serious and experienced to a first time thrower who picked up knife and axe that day simply to try his hand. A steady hand he proved, for he indeed did qualify and acquit himself nicely.
The competition was a Robin Hood themed throw, and centered on the capture of Will Scarlet.
Thrown weapons participants. Photo by Zyla of Sebastion’s Place.
The competitors included Lady Verena Wittkopf, Baroness Aemilia Soteria, Don Clewin Kupferhelblinc, Karl Kupferhelbelinc (age 6), O’no Kuma, and the first time thrower, Duncan McClough.
There were four targets, with one axe target and three knife targets, two weapons thrown per target. The axe target consisted of a white castle with a double door. Five points were awarded for hitting the door, one point for hitting the castle, and 10 points for hitting either the hinges or the handles of the door.
The second target proved much more challenging. It consisted of a head and shoulder with an inch-wide cloak above and around the shoulders. 10 points were given for sticking your knife in the cloak so as to pin Will Scarlet to the wall for questioning, 5 points for a non-lethal strike to the head or arms, and 1 point for the rest of the target. However, a lethal strike to the head or torso would prove costly, deducting 5 points from your score. There was only one 10 point throw, executed brilliantly by Baroness Aemillia Soteria with a devastating knife to the cloak at the bottom of the neck above the shoulder, pinning her subject quite nicely to the wall.
The third target consisted of a small Baronial shield over the center bullseye, with smaller still round shield targets encircling it. Each competitor was given a shield to strike. Hitting the target at all was worth 1 point, while hitting your chosen shield was 5 points. However, hitting an “ally” shield would deduct 5 points, and hitting the Baronial shield, God forbid, was a devastating deduction of 10 points. This target was the most difficult yet, yielding few points to the competitors, but thankfully no one struck the Barony shield.
The final and ultimately deciding target a “head” placed on the ground with an apple pinned upon the top. Competitors were to knock the apple off the top for 5 points, and doing damage to the apple’s skin would yield 10 points. But doing damage to the head would cost you a deduction of 10 points. This was by far the most challenging target. Not only was there a high risk for a miscue, but the target being on the ground presented a formidable addition challenge, as most throwers don’t practice throwing to ground targets. This point proved out in the end, with most competitors missing the target entirely or flirting dangerously close to damaging the head. In the end, only 2 competitors managed to knock the apple off the head: Duncan and Don Clewin, with Clewin being the only one to actually damage the apple, slicing the upper right portion of the apple clean off. This brilliant throw gave Don Clewin the Championship, with a total of 17 points. Three others tied for second with 11 points.
The throwing proved difficult due to the cold and wind as fingers became numb and knives became slippery and harder to control. However, there was never a complaint or a discouraging word heard by any on the throwing line. Her Excellency, Baroness Constance, marveled at the skill and aptitude of the throwers, especially in the cold conditions!
Congratulations to Don Clewin Kupferhelblinc on his victory. We know you will represent us well throughout the coming year. VIVAT!!
Agincourt was the site of many populace archery shoots:
Lady Katheryne Täntzel ran a youth shoot for French vs English.
Master Alaric MacConnal ran a shield shoot of French vs. English, which was won by Lord Pavel Dudoladov for the English.
THLord Deryk Archer ran a hunt shoot. Ben Nemeth, a promising new archer from the Debatable Lands, took top honors in this shoot.
Maistir Brandubh o Donnghaile ran royal rounds, where King Tindal shoot his first ever royal round.
We shot through the rain, snow and sun. In the end, not surprisingly, the English proved victorious on the archery range.
However, the premier archery competition of the day was the Seven Pearls shoot. There were seven stations, jointly designed and marshaled by last year’s champion, Lord Ichikiero Osoroshi, with assistance from Meistari Urho and Maistir Brandubh.
Seven Pearls Archery competition. Photo by Baron Liam macanTsaoire.
Alas, due to the need to reschedule after weather canceled the plan to hold Seven Pearls at Archers to the Wald, only two baronies were able to provide champions to shoot: the Debatable Lands sent Lady Katheryne Täntzel while Delftwood was represented by Baroness Anastasie Delamour. To make the competition more interesting, they invited other archers to fill in for the Baronies not represented, as the Shoots were designed for 7 to compete against one another. Baron Edward Harbinger, Lord Takematsu Yoshitaka, Ben Nemeth, Lord Pavel Dudolodov, and Master Alaric MacConnal filled in for the other groups.
Shooters were awarded points based on their ranking in each end. All archers received between 1 and 7 point for each end of arrows, first place in each end received 7 points, down to last place in each end received 1 point.
The shoot opened with a one-minute timed round where each archer had to shoot 3 arrows each at 20, 30 and 40 yard targets for standard royal round scores.
The second shoot required the archers to remove all 6 pearls from a baronial coronet while shooting en masse.
The third round was a swan shoot at 40 yards, while the fourth was a baronial heraldry shoot, where all archers shot at the heraldry of the other baronies. The winner was the barony with the least hits on its arms, while the barony with the most hits on its arms received the least points.
The fifth shoot was comprised of period targets of a shield and wand, and the sixth was a pearl hunt, with 49 pearls on the target. Only seven were true pearls and worth points, but archers had to shoot all the pearls to find the true pearls.
In the seventh and final challenge round, after working through the range, each archer issued a challenge and all archers had three arrows to answer the challenge.
In the end Lady Katheryne bested Baroness Anastasie to claim the title of Seven Pearls Champion for the Debatable Lands, while Baron Edward proved the victor among the stand-ins.
Much fun was had by the archers on this cold afternoon. Lady Katheryne, Marshal in Charge, wishes to thank the other marshals and also Meistari Urho for providing loaner gear.
The sides were chosen, French (blue) and English (red), with the marshals attempting to make them about even.
First there were a series of gate battles. Access was limited to a nine-foot gate, though the combat archers could fire more freely. The sides took turns being the aggressors with unlimited resurrections against the defenders who had none. Each side was the attacker twice.
After that, there was a series of five open field battles. The French won the first two, the English the final three.
Then a game was played where teams of three non-archers tried to cross an open field while a group of three archers fired at them. If any of the non-archers were ‘killed’ the entire team had to return to the starting line. If one was legged, all were legged.
Finally, the traditional ‘Tavern Brawl’ was held, in which fighters began the melee seated at picnic tables and then jumped into the fight when the marshals called Lay On.
ARTS AND SCIENCES
THLady Sumayya al Ghaziyyah and Lady Astridr Vikaskegg ran the first St. Crispin’s A&S Competition, which is planned to be held annually at Agincourt in the future. There were 25 entries ranging from novices to Laurels and from fiber and costuming to calligraphy and illumination. Entries were judged based on Creativity, Workmanship, Aesthetics, Authenticity, and Complexity. While documentation was considered important, scores for it were only considered in the case of a tie.
Baron Silvester Burchardt won the overall St. Crispin’s Challenge with his piece of brocaded tablet-woven trim.
Brocade tablet weaving by Baron Silvester Burchardt. Photo by Arianna.
Prizes were also given to gentles in categories based on the arts awards they possessed. Mistress Arianna of Wynthrope won the Laurel category with a black hours Fleur scroll. In the Journeyman category, for gentles with Fleurs, THLord Ishiyama Gen’tarou Yori’ie won for his Suoh (Japanese garb). In the Novice category, for gentles with Sycamores, Lady Ceindrich verch Elidir won for her knitted stockings based on an extant pair made for Eleanor of Toledo. In the Tenderfoot category, for gentles with no Arts awards, Lady Abbatissa Dreye de Banneberi won with her sekanjabin.
After the day’s activities wore down, Their Excellencies and His Majest held court, processing in to the Debatable Choir singing the Agincourt Carol.
Baron Liam and Baroness Constance recognized their Youth and Thrown Weapons Champions, as well as the winners of the Seven Pearls Archery and other archery competitions, the A&S competition winners, and the winner of the Toys for Tots tournament, as previously mentioned.
Baron Silvester Burchardt is named winner of the St. Crispin’s A&S Competition. Photo by Arianna.
Brillo el Dragon addresses the Baron and Baroness regarding the Toys for Tots tournament that he organized. Photo by Arianna.
Maistir Brandubh o Donnghaile was called forward as archery marshal and noted that Lord Pavel Dudoladov and Lord Robert Pour Maintenant had achieved the Royal Round rank of Marksman.
Their Excellencies also bestowed awards on the following gentles:
Lord Markus Skalpr Grimsson receives a Blue Silver Comet for his tablet weaving and the authenticity of his fighting accoutrements. Photo by Arianna.
Lord Takamatsu Gentarou Yoshitaka receives a Gold Comet for his service, including building the gate for the Debatable Lands’ Pennsic encampment. Photo by Arianna.
Lord Robert Pour Maintenant receives a Gold Comet for his service as a heavy weapons marshal at practices and events. Photo by Arianna.
Their Excellencies then called for Sir Thorgrim Skullsplitter, presenting him with a scroll commemorating the Green Comet that had been given to him at Pennsic, and also asked him to convey the Toys for Tots tourney winner scroll and likewise a belated Green Comet scroll to Sir Vladimir Mechnik, who had left the event before court.
Sir Thorgrim receives his Green Comet scroll and scrolls for Sir Vlad. Photo by Arianna.
Finally, Their Excellencies had words with the Imperator, Magnus Tindal, regarding their plans to invade their neighboring Shire of King’s Crossing at the Shire’s upcoming Birthday B(r)all on November 7th in order to retake the lands “stolen” from the Barony-Marche many years ago. His Majesty, after expressing some concern, decided the invasion might be justified and granted Their Excellencies leave to execute this plan.
Imperator Tindal addresses the Baron and Baroness about their planned invasion of King’s Crossing. Photo by Arianna.
Baronial Court closed, and Kingdom Court commenced. A record of the doings at that Court may be found here.
After court, gentles retired to a splendid feast cooked by Meesteress Odriana vander Brughe and her crew, then wound the evening down with bardic activities and good fellowship. Those who stayed overnight in the cabins on the site were treated to a breakfast of bagels and yummy feast leftovers Sunday morning.
Congratulations to the Autocrats, Baron Liam, Baroness Constance, and Lady Isabel, for another fine Agincourt event.
This month’s installment of On Target is about how to run the Highlander archery tournament that I marshaled at this year’s Archers to the Wald.
Highlander head target. Photo by THLord Deryk Archer.
Each Archer gets a token for his quickening. An archer may join the game at any time.
Any archer can challenge any other Archer. The two archers must then give all of all their tokens to the Marshal in Charge. The Archers get one shot at their opponent’s head; if they both miss, they both get another shot. This continues till one or both heads are hit in the same volley. In the event of a double kill, all tokens are returned to the head table. The winner of the round gets all the tokens, while the loser is obviously out. At the end, if there are three shooters and there is a double kill, the third Archer wins automatically. If it’s down to two archers and there is a double kill, the Quickenings are the tiebreaker, so it’s important to collect as many tokens during the day as possible. This shoot is about protection and revenge.
An archer may be under the protection of another player. If challenged, he or she announces whose protection they are under, and that third party will come for revenge just like in the TV series. At that point the Challenger may resend his challenge. Around 3 o’clock in the afternoon, get all the players together for the gathering so you can finish the game. Remember, there can be only ONE.
So this month I want to leave you with a safety tip. I’ve noticed archers are starting to nock their arrows before they get to the line. Remember, do not nock an arrow till the Marshal gives the command.