I’m sore, bruised, sunburned, scratched, blistered, and the few fingernails that didn’t get ripped off are dirt-encrusted, but I have returned from vacation.
This video is of the Deed of Arms from this year. All armor and weapons styles are required to be 14th century–preferably 1380-1399.
The rules of combat are a little different from typical SCA combat, in that it’s actually hard to kill someone; only certain blows in certain areas are deadly. However, three hard blows in rapid succession will “stun” a combatant, and he (or she; I saw at least one lady fighting) can be lead away for ransom. If the combatant doesn’t have any ransom left, or the ransom is not deemed acceptable, then the combatant is forced to withdraw from the fight. If the ransom is acceptable, then he may return to the field to fight again.
We had several friends who fought. One of them brought his captured man to the sidelines to “show off to his wife.” I told my husband I wanted him to fight next year and capture a Frenchman for me and set his ransom as washing dishes after supper.
While the combatants were spiff in their 14th century armor, many of the spectators were less than so. My husband and I dressed out in our best 14th century and there were a number of other people blinged out. (I like a good fashion parade.)
Then there was the woman standing near me in a red leopard print, halter-top bustier, a black gypsy skirt, and a pair of ren-faire boots. I’m sorry, but that doesn’t even come close to “a reasonable attempt at pre-17th century clothing.” Wearing a skirt does not suddenly make your clubbing and/or stripping costume medieval.
There was discussion after the fighting that we need to make a spectators’ gallery for 14th century-appropriate spectators and keep people and things (like plastic armor boxes and modern camp chairs) which are not 14th century off to one side. That way, when people take pictures, they can situate themselves so that nothing plastic or leopard-printed intrudes on their otherwise historically-correct image.
That sounds snotty, but I wouldn’t insist on wearing my 14th century clothing to an Elizabethan rapier battle, and if I was going to an early period-themed party in the Viking longhouse, I’d wear my Saxon outfit. Personally, I like the idea of time-period specific activities because it gives me the chance to have one outfit for every 100 years of history. (An eventual goal of mine.)
This is not a video from this year, but Wolgemut (whom I always want to call “Voldemort” now) played at various venues during the last-half of the War.