Glossary

3A
The current newsletter of the Far Isles, from 2000. Apples And Acorns. Consists of "Thee Mundayne Byt" and "Gesta Insulanorum" ("Deeds of the Islanders"), with occasional extra bits...

3E
The newsletter of the Far Isles, from early days, until July 2000. Retitled as "3A" from August 2000. Originally "Erith's Epistle from the East", "Errith's Extended Epistle", or other variations, depending on who you talked to!

A.P.
Anno Principalis: "in the year of the principality". Internal dating system, now rarely used.

A.S.
Anno Societas: "in the year of the Society". Internal dating system. The year starts in October, and A.S.40 starts Oct 2015.

Administrative Officers
The four appointed posts attached to High Council: King of Arms, Master of Revels, Master of Arts & Sciences and High Marshal.

Alderman, High
Medieval title of the Councillor. Elected member of High Council.

Alvia
Was at all times a Virtual place; featured heavily during the reign of Guy Elfkin, was - in part - the cause of the loss of Raedwulf. Never owned a Land Rover.

Apprentice
Level in a Guild or SIG.

Area Marshal
Person specifically authorised by the High Marshal to conduct / lead fight practices in a particular location.

Arms, bearing of
There are limits on who can "bear arms" (carry weapons) at Court. See Statute.

Arms, coat of
Everyone is encouraged to have one of these (so we can use pretty banners everywhere we go), but it needs to be ratified by the Heralds.

Assassins
There is no such Guild.

Associate member
A member of the Society who has all the rights of a Full Member - apart from receiving 3A, Quill and Cauldron and Domesday Booke.

Astrid Stormtongue
Viking, and Princess of Camcairndryth. See her Persona page.

Authenticity
The ideal of modelling our equipment, garb, activities and behaviour as closely as is reasonable or practical after those of the period 500-1603.

Authenticity Debate, Great
A discussion which occured in 1994 about the level of authenticity which should be required and/or the level of un-authenticity which should be tolerated. No firm conclusions were reached.

Authenticity Police
Those people who have a self-imposed duty to point out when a failing in Authenticity may be bad enough to offend themselves and others. Whether this is a Good Thing or a Bad Thing depends on one's viewpoint and the degree of tact with which the advice is offered, but it will always be worth giving it serious consideration.

Autocrat
Person in charge of an event.

Bailiff
Medieval equivalent of a mundane title, often "Treasurer". Normally an elected officer of a sub-group.

Baldric
Sash worn diagonally from shoulder to waist, either to support a sword or to show off badges attached to it.

Bard
A member of the Guild of Bards: also, generally, anyone who makes music or tells stories.

Baron Bowland
A title held by Samuel Sanskin - so that no one else has it.

Bears
Some active members of the Far Isles are, in the mundane, soft toys. Far-Bjorn, associated with Samuel Sanskin, is the most longstanding member of this type, Artos Aurelius, the Strongoak Legal Advisor, is perhaps the most notorious, while Archimedes, of Tintagel, is the best-published. Bears do NOT have voting rights.

Bell, Copper
An award given to the elected officers of High Council.

Belt, green and black
Mark of a ratified fighter. See School of Motley Wolf subpage

Bishop de Velmont
Formerly the Royal Chaplain and Bishop of the FreeMark. More recently, has betaken himself to travel in search of Further Enlightenment.

Black Nicholas
Nickname of Lord Nicholas Fairbourn.

Black Rat
"This group of pirates and desperadoes, murderers, thieves and scoundrels definitely did exist at one time and struck terror into the heart of the good people of the Far Isles whenever their sigil, a stuffed Black Rat was found." (From Theo's Book of Custom)

Blackwater
A sub-group of the Grim. These days, mainly populated by the fitz Johns, living in their Stoke Manor.

Blo*dy Big River
Chadwell used to stand (or, more likely, lean precariously…) upon the banks of this river.

Bourneville
A village, or possibly a large wardrobe, founded by Guy Elfkin and managed by his steward, Rosemary. The whereabouts of the founder are largely unknown.

Brighthelm
Was a Far Isles sub-group based in Brighton. Some of the ex-members, now living in Scotland, have resurrected the name within the SCA.

Brigstowe
Disbanded at Valentines 1992. Used to be ruled by Morgan Corwyn and to be based in the Bristol area.

Bronwen
Believes herself to be a sheep: second persona of Enid Fairbourn (Lady Jane).

Bryan the Obtuse
Angle, famed for his appalling puns.

Burning, villages
Chadwell have had a history of accidentally (?) burning down many of their former homes before moving the Village to another location.

Camber's Well
Was formerly a Shire and County, under the Lamented Countess Kate the Unrepentant.

Camcairndryth
Principality, ruled by Astrid Stormtongue. See Camcairndryth subpage.

Cardinal Urbani
Based at the Curia. Long-standing virtual character.

Cat
For some unknown reason, Kia Hesa believes that these should be sacrificed. After many attempts, she succeeded in this in 24 A.S. Previous cats have escaped, proved not to be in the box after all, or turned out to be stones.

Cerys, Queen
Queen of The Far Isles. Due to abdicate in 41 A.S. after long, eventful and successful reign.

Chadwell
It used to be a level 1 sub-group of great antiquity and notoriety, often simply referred to as "The Village". Part of the Principality of Camcairndryth.

Chancellor, High
Society treasurer. Elected member of High Council. Responsible for looting the populace collecting taxes.

Character, virtual
Person referred to in stories, but who has no (or only occasional, in response to specific plot needs) actual existence as a persona.

Chariot
Forsoothly speaking, a car.

Child member
A member of the Society below certain age defined by the Constitution. Entitled to reduced rates at the Revels.

Chronicle
The original newsletter of the Far Isles, hand-calligraphed.

Chunu
The form in which the potato genuinely first reached Europe: freeze-dried instant mash. A delicacy!

Cider
Alcoholic beverage made (mainly) of fermented apples. The currency of Strongoak.

Cloved Orange
A game played with citrus fruit and cloves in which the cloves are passed from person to person via a kiss. A way of becoming better acquainted fast. (Don't worry: we haven't played it for years!)

Con.
Abbreviation for either Constitution or Convention: context should show which is meant.

Constitution
The official rules of the Society, treated very seriously and updated each year.

Cornet
Title for a Field Pursuivant. See School of Heralds.

Cotehardie
A tightly fitting, tailored garment.

Court
A formal event at a revel, presided over by a noble.

Courtesie
A word whose use has varied widely with time, generally referring to the art of behaving in a gracious and authentic manner.

Court Jester
The Webmaster. Sometimes referred to as "the Crier".

Courtly Love, Guild of
A semi-serious Guild devoted to romantic poetry and the like. Often let down by its links with the Guild of Vile Seducers.

Cross, Charing, monument of
The Principality of Camcairndryth is defined as being all points to the East of this landmark. At Winter Revel 24 A.S., it was moved to Lands End to be used as a lighthouse. This has caused considerable debate as to the new location of the boundary.

Curry
The currency in which Chadwell chieftains often pay their staff.

Debate, The
A semi-formal semi-event usually held at Revels by one of the boffins learned peoples of the University. Everyone is encouraged to partake. The debate usually ends without any formal conclusions.

Demon
Any reference to technology.

Dogs
Those kept by Kia Hesa are known for their ferocity.

Domesday Booke
A list of current members, including their contact details. Produced each year.

Dragon, iron
Forsoothly speaking, a train.

Dragon, Order of Heavenly Wisdom
A rather confusing Order, once headed by Igor Ross. Encourages moderation in all things (including moderation).

Ensign
Title for a Field Herald. See School of Heralds.

Esmerelda
Agony Aunt in Gesta Insulanorum. (virtual character).

Falling over, Guild of
Often suggested, but never chartered.

Far Horizons
Quarterly (in theory) publication of various articles and stories published in years 1982 - 2014. Superseded by the Quill and Cauldron.

Feast
A large, formal meal, normally held during the evening of a revel. Consists of several courses, often referred to as "removes" (though, medievally, this is incorrect usage of the word).

Feasting gear
Bowl, plate, spoon, knife, etc. That which you require in order to partake of a Feast.

Ferret
Originally, a play written by Andrew Lyng and set in the Ticklish Ferret Inn. Now used to refer to plays written by members, in general.

Filk
Folk songs which have been adapted for Far Isles use (outside the Isles, has a broader definition).

Floating, downstream
The means whereby many articles formerly belonging to others are found to be in Chadwell.

Foresthall, The
A sub-group located within the Camber's Well. Currently one of the largest subgroups in the Isles and certainly the most militant. Part of the Principality of Camcairndryth.

Forsoothly speaking
The art of describing mundane things and events in medieval terms.

Foundation and Independence Revel
Great Revel, held usually in October. A weekend event.

Freemark, the
Not so much a Subgroup as an Anarchy. Baron Bowland leads but does not control it.

Fur Isles
Unofficial sub-group consisting entirely of soft toys. See Bears.

G.I.
Gesta Insulanorum. See 3A.

Garb
Clothing worn while in persona, as distinguished from Mundane "clothes". A major part of our attempts at Authenticity.

Golden Apple
To honour those who work behind the scenes to ensure that others may revel to their hearts pleasure. The oldest Order in the Isles.

Goodchild, Nathaniel
Captain of the Steel and Consort to Queen Cerys. Dual-wielding monster master and the Head of the Inquirers Guild.

Gorsedd
Bardic contest, usually held on Twelfth Night Revel, after the Feast.

Great North Road
A road which goes north from the original position of the Charing Cross Monument. The village of Strongoak are charged with guarding it from other bandits.

Great Revel
One of three revels which Constitution says must be held each year (Twelfth Night, May Revel, Foundation and Independence Revel) at which the Monarch holds Court.

Grim Groat
It used to refer exclusively to currency of the Grimwood: one groat equals one flagon of ale. These days 'a groat' refers to any form of non-standard currency within the Isles. Rules on exchangeability and refundability as well as the value are declared by the issuer.

Grimbourne
A now defunct sub group of The Grim.

Grimwood
The oldest sub-group in the Isles, often shortened to "The Grim". The Sherriff is normally "elected" while he is at the bar buying a round, or otherwise unaware of what is being done behind his back, and actual leadership seems to have a great deal to do with The Vicecountess (sic!) Coneybury.

Grockle
Forsoothly speaking, a tourist.

Guild
Medieval equivalent of a SIG. Presided over by a Guildmaster.

Guild that does not exist
Assassins. One should ask for Johanna of Merstan - she might not be the guildmistress but she is the person 'in the know'.

Guildmaster
Person in charge of a Guild/SIG. Need not qualify for any rank within that Guild as long as they're willing to do the donkey work.

Guy Elfkin
Almost-King of the Far Isles, mysteriously vanished soon after his election as successor to Theophilus. Famed for his "taste" in colours and clothing.

Hafoc, Lansdren
Captain of the Motley Wolf, havoc incarnated, famous for his martial skills and love of camping.

Hat, red
The symbol of a Cardinal. A great deal of effort went into procuring one of these for Theophilus.

Head of Society
The mundane title of the Monarch.

Helgi
Lord High Executioner of the Isles, famed for his skill with an axe. Probably a virtual character now.

Heloisa
Her Serenity the Grand Duchess St Heloisa, Mother of the Far Isles, and far more titles than will fit into a Glossary. Founder and first Monarch. Died (possibly), returned (mysteriously), now has a taste for alcohol.

Herald
A member of the Guild of Heralds: duties include advising on coats of arms, announcing matters at Courts, and controlling tourneys (sometimes all at once).

High Council
The elected ruling body of the Far Isles, consisting of the High Steward, the High Chancellor, the Master Secretary and the High Alderman. The Administrative Officers also have the right of attendance at meetings, but no vote.

High Marshal
Head of Fighting. No fighting can be done without the Head. His (s)word is final.

High Steward
Medieval title of the Chairman.

Houppelande
Extremely loosely fitting and full garment.

Igor Ross
Former Chevalier and Master of Arms, wielder of a very strange accent. Possibly a virtual legendary character now.

John of London
Wealthy Cloth Merchant. Famed for having his own personal fog-bank.

Journeyman
Rank within a Guild.

Jugger
A Rattan combat game, based on the film "Salute of the Jugger" (1989), starring Rutger Hauer. Defunct, since no-one alive in the Isles practices rattan fighting nowadays.

Kemsing
Youth Hostel, used in the past as a venue for weekend events, especially Arts & Sciences revels.

Lady Jane Fairbourn
Former Duchess of Camcairndryth, much loved matriarch of the Fairbourn Clan. Famed for a frightening level of proficiency in any craft or scholarly subject you care to mention, and holder of a record number of Masterships in Guilds.

Letton Hall
Christian study centre, used in the past as a venue. Traditional venue for coronations.

Lighthouse
The new use given to the Charing Cross Monument (q.v.), after its removal to Lands End.

Lord / Lady of Misrule
Overseer of festivities at Twelfth Night Revel.

Madame Pearls
See Michelle Sant-Denys and Pearls.

Marshal
Person authorised by the High Marshal or one of the Captains oversee a Tourney or Steel combat bout (will generally also be a Cornet in Field Heraldry).

Master
Rank within a Guild. Masters in Guilds wear a red baldrick in Court, on which are displayed the badges of the guilds in which they have achieved mastery. Some individuals require multiple baldricks for this purpose (see "Lady Jane").

Master of Arms
The title held by the Chief Herald up to 25 A.S. Nowadays, King of Arms is the official title.

Mistress / Master of Arts and Sciences
In charge of most Guilds/SIGs. Astrid Stormtongue holds the title now.

Master of Revels
An office within the Isles.

Master Secretary
An office with the High Council, responsible for all the boring paperwork.

May Revel
Great Revel, held in May. Sometimes named Spring Revel, if it falls in April.

Mead
A delicious alcoholic drink, made from honey and water. A broad subject.

Melusine
Former publisher of Far Horizons. Now spends much of her time at her duties within the SCA, where she has been the consort to several Kings in a row and is undoubtedly the brains behind the throne.

Member
A member of the Society. See the Constitution to learn about rights.

Michelle Sant-Denys
Vicecountess (sic!) Coneybury, rival to Guy Elfkin for the throne of the Far Isles, once briefly married to Lord Nicholas Fairbourn (before it was discovered that neither of them had any money and they were too closely related anyway).

Midsummer Revel
Revel, which the Camcairndryth rules require them to hold in late June. In practise they sometimes "sub-let" this slot to other sub-groups.

Minstrel, boxed
A music demon: probably a CD or MP3 player. Forsoothly speaking.

Monarch
The generic medieval title given to the Head of Society. Has in the past held the rank of Baroness, Princess, Prince, and King (although even Guy wouldn't try to lay claim to all of those titles at once…). See Heloisa, Theophilus, Cerys and Guy Elfkin.

Mr. Floppye
Nickname of Lord Nicholas Fairbourn, after an unfortunate incident involving an over-ambitious codpiece.

Muchmead
Level 1 sub-group, founded 2000 by Linnet. Part of the Principality of Camcairndryth. Famed for its honey, pigeon post, and bards. Home of the Dancing Hare inn.

Mundane
Term used to describe things which relate to the current time (21st century) rather than the historical (or fictional).

Nai Cantrell, Sir
The lone remaining Knight in the Fart Isles. Renowned for unlimited endurance, great skill and horrible luck at tournaments. Current High Marshal.

NMG
New Member's Guide. A mythical document, perpetually in preparation. A half-hearted attempt can be found on this website: here.

Nova Albion
Canadian branch. Probably lost in a blizzard.

Pan-historic
Chronologically cosmopolitan: since coming to the Isles, has seen and copied equipment from times other than their own.

Peasant, The
Properly, Hiw Freeman. A not-so-noble messenger of the Sanskin Household. Carries a cudgel and knows how to use it.

Pea Soup, exploding
An unfortunate incident at Briavels, concerning the Pea Soup made by Strongoak for Friday night, and a means of transportation that encouraged it to ferment.

Pearls
A major plot-line, circa 24-25 A.S. A large number of pearls went missing, and subsequently have turned up in the Grimwood, often in the ownership of the Vicecountess (sic!) Michelle Sant Denys.

Persona
The character each of us becomes in the Far Isles. Some people have more than one persona.

Picnic
Camber's Well event, held during the summer. No booking needed: turn up and bring your own food.

Pigeon
Muchmead uses these for communication. Explains quite a lot.

Pigs
Associated with the village of Strongoak. Possibly its most intelligent occupants, certainly the most honest.

Porkenapple
Mysterious beast once eaten by Raedwulf: sporadic attempts to track down another specimen and serve it to him have been made since (a bottle of his best is promised to the winner!).

Prince-Bishop
See Theophilus.

Quill and Cauldron
Quarterly (in practice) publication of various articles and stories submitted by the members. Running since 2014.

Raedwulf
Former High Steward of the Far Isles. Also former Master of the Guilds of Brewers, Dancers & Performers and a Bard. Former King's Champion and Gorsedd Champion. Irritatingly smug. The mead he brewed had the reputation of being notoriously tempting.

Ratified, coat of arms
A coat of arms which has been approved by the King of Arms (chief Herald).

Ratified, fighter
A fighter who has been judged safe by a Marshal, and granted his or her Belt.

Red Shirts
A Motley Wolf combat game, tribute to mundane "Star Trek". Everyone gets to be the hero once...

Reeve
Usually equivalent to mundane Secretary. Sub-groups above Level 1 have a Reeve.

Remove
Word used for a course of a meal: in fact it was rarely used in period, and appears to be a hang-over from our SCA days.

Revel
A gathering of members of the Far Isles, wearing garb, and normally with food and entertainment involved.

Riversmeet
Location of the University. A little bit worse for the wear since the Guild of Alchemist took residence there.

Robe
Generic term for a long loose garment.

S.C.A.
Society for Creative Anachronism: another re-creation group, American-based, from which the Far Isles split in the far past but with which it remains on friendly terms.

Samuel Sanskin
Hedge lawyer, and remembrancer to the Monarch. One of the earliest members of the Far Isles still to be active.

Sanskin, Samuel
See Samuel Sanskin and Whoever.

Sheep, Killer
Found in Chadwell: Bronwen's sisters, after training by Eurgh.

Shift
Long sleeved undergarment: female equivalent of a shirt.

SIG
Special Interest Group: mundane name for a Guild.

Silver Acorn
An order awarded for excellence in the Arts and Sciences.

Silver Falcon
The Knightly Order of the Far Isles. Quite possibly defunct now.

Sleeping Lion
Retired nobles.

Smug the Golden, Lord
Title applied to Raedwulf after Briavels Revel 25 A.S., when he won both the Gorsedd and the Tourney.

Speaking rune
Forsoothly speaking, a phone number.

Spring Revel
The name used by Valentine's Revel when it fails to be anywhere near Feb 14th. Also used by May Revel when it fails to be in May.

St Briavels Castle
Youth Hostel, formerly King John's hunting lodge, in the Forest of Dean. Used as a venue for Foundation and Independence Revel.

St Nicotinus
Patron saint of smokers. Prayer to St. Nicotinus is used as an excuse for a cigarette break.

Statute
Rules, both mundane and medieval, which are published by High Council but are not part of Constitution. Hard to pinpoint these days.

Stormsham
Island off the East coast, home of the Stormtongue household and their fleet of long-ships.

Story ball
An item which is passed from person to person at a revel: the holder is requested to either continue the story being told or pass the ball to another.

Strongoak
It used to be a sub-group, founded in 23 A.S., though existed as a Household long before that. Mundanely based in Stevenage, Herts. Part of the County of Cambers Well. Like many other groups, it has become dormant.

Sub-group
Part of the Duchy, Principality or Kingdom.

Subtlety
Dish presented at a Feast, whose decorative qualities are more important than edibility. Any jokes enshrined in the design may be subtle, or may not.

Sword of State
Object displayed at Court. Large and impressive, and one of the few weapons allowed to be present (see Statute, and Arms, bearing of).

Syllabub
Delicious dessert served at many revels. Has a reputation for being smeared on other people and eaten off them, but this practise is now heavily discouraged.

T tunic
The most basic item of garb: tunic, of any length, shaped like a "T".

Table, High
A separate table at Feasts where nobility sit. (They get the same food as the rest of us, though).

Talpi
(Latin: Mole) - informant within the High Offices of Government, often writing from within the Lord High Steward's Office to the Editor of G.I. Virtual character.

Tattler
Virtual character, frequent reporter to 3A.

Theophilus
Cardinal-Archbishop, and ex-Prince of the Far Isles. Famed for his imposing presence.

Tintagel
Level 1 sub-group, mundanely based around Croydon and medievally around Tintagel. Part of the County of Camber's Well. Has a reputation for smuggling and piracy. Founded 12th Night 23 A.S. Owners of the Lighthouse (formerly the Monument of Charing Cross).

Tourney
Fighting contest: normally a spectacular spectator event. Prizes are awarded for actually winning, and also for chivalry and dramatic deaths.

Treasurer
An office with the High Council. It is, seemingly, merged with the office of the Chancellor.

Twelfth Night
Great Revel, held in January. Saturnalia-type event, overseen by a Lord/Lady of Misrule. We usually give each other Christmas-type presents at this time.

University
SIG (or possibly a group of them). See Debate.

Vicecountess
Deliberate mis-spelling of the title (Viscountess) held by Michelé Sant-Denys.

Vikings
Legendary monsters whom Bronwen fears: nothing to do with nice people like, say, Astrid Stormtongue.

Vile Seducers, Guild of.
Now (possibly) defunct, and never taken seriously. Linked with the Guild of Courtly Love. Required tasks for grading included seducing a senior member of the clergy at High Table.

Village, the
Pre-25 A.S., this will be a reference to Chadwell. After that, references are ambiguous.

Warband
Warbands are usually made up of many warriors, but the Far Isles legendary Warband used to be singular (Rhys was It).

Whoever
Email sign-off used by Samuel Sanskin, after some discussion as to the importance of his identity.

Winter Revel
Camcairndryth revel, held in November. Like Midsummer Revel, the Camcairndryth rules require them to host it, but the Society rules do not.

Woodford
Level 1 subgroup within Camcairndryth. Like Chadwell, most of the inhabitants appear to have gone walkabout, leaving the place rather sparsely populated.

Yodeling Imp
Forsoothly speaking, a mobile phone, sometimes also called Telling Bone.

 

The original of this Glossary was authored by Sian ferch Rhianneth in November 2001. The Court Jester has taken some liberties to alter and adjust few entries in 2016.