SCA Cavalry Demo- Atlantian Knights

On May 15, 2009, members of  the Lance of the Argent Bear and House de Montfort, all denizens of the fair kingdom of Atlantia, created a medieval demo for the fortunate students of Shoal Berry Intermediate School in Duncan, SC.

The riders were competing for the honor of becoming the Queen of Camelot’s champion. About 150 students were divided into groups to cheer for their chosen knight. Who reigned victorious?  Watch and find out!

Many thanks to sommerbrendan for posting this footage!


Modern Cavalry Challenge-Rolex Kentucky Three Day Event 2009

Lexington , Kentucky is the heartbeat of America’s horse country.  Each year in April, elite riders from around the world gather at the Kentucky Horse Park to test themselves and their horses against the course at the Rolex Three-Day Event.

Three Day Eventing began as a complete test of the mounted warrior and his horse. Eventing consists of three phases. The first phase, dressage, mimics battle drills and regimental parades.  Horse and rider must navigate a pre-memorized pattern of intricate movements.  They are judged on balance, obedience and accuracy.  For the veteran event horse, a thoroughly fit athlete amped up for the wild run which comes next, dressage is also a test of patience.

The second phase, cross-country, is a long, fast gallop over varied terrain and solid fences, as if a soldier were bearing a critical message to a distant ally.  Horse and rider accrue penalties and can be eliminated from competition for going off course, refusing a jump, exceeding the optimum time, or falling.

The final phase is show jumping in an arena over fences that knock down at the lightest brush of a hoof. This tests the fitness, suppleness and continued obedience of a horse who has already completed the grueling cross-country test.

Only the most athletic, courageous and well-trained horses successfully complete a three-day event.  Through their skills, such horses pay homage to great war steeds throughout history.

Below, Great Britain’s  Lucy Wiegersma and Woodfalls Inigo Jones cleanly navigate the Duck Pond. Enjoy our extensive gallery of video clips from the 2009 Lexington Kentucky Rolex Three Day Event at Laughing Gypsy Photography.

Sylvan Glen Equestrian Authorization

Mother nature challenged Sylvan Glen’s equestrians once again on authorization day!  Gale force winds howled through spring’s sunshine and deep mud, knocking over equipment and carrying conversations away.  Our intrepid equestrians refused to be swayed and gathered on the fields of honor at the Bower farm.

An Imposing Silhouette: Rachel and Pierre Pointelle, Scott and Cassandra, and Lady Banshee

Intrepid Equestrians of Aethelmearc

Lord Gunnarr and Lady Banshee traveled down from Endless Hills to conduct authoriztions and direct the merry mayhem.  Lady Bathory Rose accompanied them.  Participating equestrians were: Scott, Noel, Rachel, Mark and Kirsten.  Paticipating equines were: Cassandra, Sioux, Dolly,and Pierre Pointelle.  Rosamund ground crewed– thanks Rosamund! The newborn colt studied the grown warhorses from his lookout in the roundpen and impressed us all with his levade (a controlled rear used during mounted warfare as defense against artillery and elephant warriors.)

Gypsy colt in levade

The authorization process first tests the rider’s control of the horse with the reins carried in one hand, leaving the other hand free for a weapon.  Riders performed figure-eights and transitions (changes in gaits) to prove their communication with their mounts.  We then took up weapons and demonstrated the games.   In Gunnarr’s words, all riders passed the authorizations “with flying colors.”

Mark and Dolly Behead the Enemy:

Mark and Dolly Behead the Enemy

 Noel and Sioux Tilt the Rings:

noel and sioux tilt the rings

Kirsten and Pierre Pointelle Gallop the Reed Chop:

KIrsten and Pierre Pointelle Gallop the Reed Chop

We put our horses and equipment away and reconvened in the barn.  Bathory Rose brought forth examples of her beautiful horse barding and caparisons.  The patient Pierre Pointelle (made even more agreeable by Rachel’s endless apple supply) modeled the exquisite equine garb.

Mark, Kirsten and the Endess Hills contingent then joined Margarita, Bera, and Snaebjorn at the fairgrounds to discuss layout and scheduling for the upcoming Siege of Glengary.   The site is perfect and the autocrat is amazing.  We equestrians invite you join us in September… and for all the practices leading up to an unforgetably good time!

Click here for the slideshow

Equestrian Practice Report

5 riders and their steeds braved the chill winds for our first unofficial equestrian practice of the year.  AEthelmearc’s current KEO, Alexander Caithnes,  thumbed his knightly nose at the winter storm warnings and joined us for a day of chivalry, learning, and authorizations prep.  Alli arrived with her whippets to add to the medieval flair.  Mark had squirreled away his camera in his pocket, and snapped these shots perched atop Dolly’s mountainous back:

Armed and elegant! Rachel and Pete

SCA equestrian practice Rachel and Pete

Alexander expounds, Cricket cogitates, and Kirsten tries not to Freeze!

SCA equestrian practice


Worldview from a War Horse: Weapons rack through Dolly’s ears

SCA equestrian practice

Alexander gave us a generous grant towards procuring insurance for official SCA practices. Mark stepped forth to offer the balance.  Many thanks to them for their knightly largesse!

Riders and their mounts:

Scott and Cassandra

Noel and Sioux

Rachel and Pierre Pointille

Mark and Dolly Madison

Kirsten and Red Sonja

Ailenor’s Equestrian Practice

Our southern cousins Lady Alienor and Lord Reinmar hosted an SCA equestrian practice at their farm.  We loaded up the beasties and dragged Scott and Noel along as well.  Scott and Noel rode at Siege of Glengary when we hosted the equestrian events. Noel now owns my old warhorse, Sioux, veteran of Gulf Wars.  It was just like old times!

The two young horses I brought had never played the games before.  Gideon was a little leery–especially of the heavy machinery next door! Lucy, my Thoroughbred racetrack rescue, took it all in stride:

Lucy, 5 yo TB mare for sale, cross-trains at an SCA medieval equestrian practice


Lucy, all around TB mare for sale, cross trains at an SCA equestrian practice

Lucy, all around TB mare for sale, jousting at the quintain

Our novice horses faced new places, new horses, and new challenges…even new outfits!  The natural horsemanship foundation laid at home gave them a solid grounding for acceptance and quick mastery of new experiences. Clicker training accelerated the horses’ comfort level with flailing swords, bobbing lances and billowing costumes.

Everyone rode well and had a blast!  Lady Brandwyn Alston again marshalled.  Our thanks to the ground crew who kept everything running quickly and smoothly. My hands were too full with 2 horses to take photos. Next time I promise to get more!

Journey to Revel Grove Joust

The usual suspects traveled eastward to Revel Grove for the MD Renaissance Festival.   The spirit of merriment and adventure conquered the blistering heat.  We ran into old friends, swooned over exotic goods, and sampled delicious food and drink.  The highlight, as ever, were the jousts.

The opening ceremonies for the noon joust:


Enjoy the full Galleries of the noon joust here and the evening joust here