Researching Early Medieval Events

Yesterday I was at the Medieval Fair. And let me tell you, it was absolutely brilliant.

I saw and bought plenty of things: candles, garb of many different colours and styles, swords and armour, mead (finally got to try it and loved it) and a Heavy Combat demonstration, among other things.

I enjoyed watching the Heavy Combat and I’d quite like to try it. Afterwards, I was curious about how much the Rattan Swords that the fighters use weighed, so I asked one of the fighters if I could test the weight of his and he said yes. The rattan sword was much lighter than I anticipated, as was the sword I held afterwards. The second sword I held was still lighter than expected, however it was heavy enough for me to know that a weapon of that weight would be a bit heavy for me to train with at present. This was part of the motivation for me to finally decide to join the SCA (Society for Creative Anachronism) this year (and about time too, since I’d known about the SCA since I was either 13 or 14. I forget which it was).

One of the things members do is to create a new persona, the person they would have been in Medieval times. Some just choose a name and others go into a lot more detail. I decided to go along the more detailed route and began to do research on the Celts, when they were converted to Christianity and for how long afterwards some might have practised Celtic Polytheism after this had happened (either in secret or openly). From what I have found so far, conversion happened between the 5th Century and the 7th Century and some continued with Polytheism up until the 8th. For all I know it could have gone on longer than that, but as of yet, that is all the information I have found on the matter at present. (If any of you have any more information on the correct dates, then do let me know).

I want to create a persona around this time because some probably would have still been practising Celtic Polytheism at that time and it’s much closer to my current belief system than Christianity. Given that I’ve walked away from that now, I don’t particularly want to go back to it again.

All of the Celtic symbols I’ve been looking at and reading about have been fascinating and will be good to know about to make my persona more realistic. Of course, there is the confusion of what to do with the element directions. The directions are different in the Southern Hemisphere from the directions in the Northern Hemisphere, but while I’m in the former, the plan is to have my persona be from Scotland, so technically the directions should be for the latter. It’s all so confusing. I usually leave Water in the west and Air in the east, but Earth and Fire get changed around. Just another thing for me to consider… πŸ™‚

Until I figure out what Century I will be choosing, I can’t decide what style and colours of garb I should be making either. It’s frustrating, but fascinating and exciting to think about and figure out at the same time.

Until next time,

The Nocturnal Philosopher πŸ™‚


~ by thenocturnalphilosopher on 07/05/2012.

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