Last Saturday, I stepped down from the Kingdom position of Gold Falcon Principal Herald, IMG_5595a position I held for two years.  I was given some silk and some other sundry bits of fabric, and wanted my friend Anna to make me something awesome to wear out of it, since I really don’t trust my sewing skills.  We decided that it would be awesome to have something from one of the golden ages of the Empire.  So, eleventh century it was.

I’m really pleased with the silk and how the trim came together.

Now, unbeknownst to me, Anna also had another trick up her sleeve.

It turns out that my successor was planning on naming me a Herald Extraordinary, which is a sort of lifetime achievement award in the SCA College of Arms.  It has a real world equivalent, also called Herald Extraordinary, which is a permanent office and title.  I just get the title in the SCA, of which I’m working on picking one out.

During my tenure, I made two Herald Extraordinaries, and being of a scribal nature, I made scrolls for both recipients that were appropriate for their personae.  For Baroness Marie Chantal Delaire, I went for 1450s French manuscript.  For Mistress Sofya la Rus, it was all Ostromir Gospels.  Offhandedly, I apparently really like making super-tiny scrolls.

Anyhow, my successor Takauji got together with my friend Anna and commissioned her to make my Herald Extraordinary scroll, which is based on a 13th c Byzantine icon of the Archangel Gabriel, who is the patron saint of heralds.  You can see her process photos in this entry: Surprise! Icon!

Anna used a 6th century hymn to Mary, the Akathistos Hymn to Mary, as the basis for the scroll text.  It reads as such:


Unto you, O Konstantia Kaloethina, invincible herald,
we, Basileus Matsunaga, and Basilissa Elena,
In thanksgiving ascribe the gratitude for the deliverance from service.
And having your might unassailable, allow us these words:

Rejoice, you through whom our words have gleamed forth.
Rejoice, you whom the cries of the Falcon have carried!
Rejoice, the Purple of our Kingdom so bold.
Rejoice, the Gold of the Crowns so bright!

Rejoice, to you who stood behind the sovereign thrones.
Rejoice, you who echoed the voice of Calontir!
Rejoice, you who enraptured our populace.
Rejoice, you who captivated our peers!

Rejoice, for in gratitude, a new title bestowed!
Rejoice, for Konstantia, whom as our Herald, is now named as Extraordinary!
Done this day by our hand at our Crown Tournament, the 26th
of March, Anno Societatis Fifty. (L.)

I would be lying if I said that didn’t impress me.  I’m insanely honoured, and just a little verklempt (I might have cried).  And the fact that Anna worked on the icon and my new ensemble (and then some!) and was able to do so without me finding out about it?  Yeah.  My friends are rotting, dirty rotten rotters. . .but without them, I don’t think the awesome of the Society would be the same.  Thank you, both.

8 thoughts on “Gobsmacked.

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