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Baronial Customs and Traditions of the Palatine Barony of the Far West


(As approved by Their Majesties, Jade and Megan, in June of AS XXXVII, being 2002 Gregorian.)

The customs and traditions here written were first established during the era of Their Excellencies Alwyn and Rhiannon, the founding Baron Palatine and the founding Baroness Palatine Far West. Their Excellencies believed it to be necessary to the welfare of the Far West that the customs and traditions be preserved in writing, that future generations might know and respect the legacy they receive. Revisions have been made by Edward and Marixsa (XXVI), Christoforo and Marixsa (XXVIII), Marie and Robert (XXIX), Thomas and Michelle (XXIX), Toshio and Siobhan (XXXII), and Morgan and Wei (XXXVI).


Being a compendium of the customs and traditions of the current Middle Ages as they are practiced in Their Occidental Majesties' Palatine Barony of the Far West. These customs and traditions establish the foundation upon which the SCA has been built in the Far West. They support all our efforts to re-create the Middle Ages as they should have been, an era filled with grace, honor, nobility, and courage; devoid of the baseness which haunts man's existence. These customs and traditions also serve as a binding force to unite the far-flung branches of the Far West through a commonality of practice and belief.


I. The LawEdit

A. The word of the Crown is law.
B. The Palatine Barony shall be held as a fief of Their Occidental Majesties, and be subject to the laws of the West Kingdom, the governing documents of the Society for Creative Anachronism, Inc., the United States Constitution, and any local or national mundane laws which should apply.

II. Territorial CharterEdit

A. The title of the fief shall be "The Palatine Barony of the Far West," as created by their Majesties Jade and Anastasia on June 20, AS XXII (c.e. 1987).
B. The geographic area of the Barony shall be Japan, South Korea, the Philippines, Guam, Diego Garcia, Singapore, and the British Indian Ocean Territory. Other territories may be added by royal grant.
C. The right to sit on the Baronial thrones and rule the Barony in the name of the Crown shall be determined twice each Society year by Coronet Tournaments.
D. The victor in the Coronet Tournament shall be styled the Palatine Baron/ess of the Far West; his/her consort shall be styled the Baron/ness of the Far West. No other differences in rank, duties, or obligations shall exist except as provided herein under sections XI.G.
E. "The Coronet" shall be construed to refer to either or both of the Palatine Baron/ess of the Far West and Baron/ess of the Far West.

III. Duties and Responsibilities of the CoronetEdit

A. The Coronet of the Far West shall fulfill their duties as contained in the governing documents of the Society for Creative Anachronism, Inc., the Laws of the West Kingdom, and according to the wishes of the Crown.
B. The Coronet may hold any office(s) within or without the Barony, save that of Baronial Seneschal or any Exchequer office in the Barony, so long as the responsibilities and duties of such office(s) do not conflict with the obligations and duties inherent in the Coronet.
C. The Coronet shall act to the best of their ability as the chief examples of chivalry, courtesy, and grace for the people of the Barony.
D. The Coronet shall:
1. Represent and be the advocate of the Baronial Populace to the Crown of the West;
2. Encourage special care in the extension of hospitality and welcome to new and prospective members of the Barony;
3. Encourage and promote the arts, sciences, and martial arts of the current Middle Ages;
4. Serve on such courts and boards as are deemed necessary by the Crown of the West;
5. Swear fealty to the Crown of the West, either in person or in writing;
6. Accept fealty from the subjects of the Crown in the Barony on behalf of the Crown of the West;
7. Report to the Crown of the West, either in person or in writing, as to the status of the Barony at each coronation;
8. Recommend to the Crown of the West those who, through their achievements and/or service, are worthy of recognition;
9. Recognize their predecessors for their services as Baron and Baroness of the Far West, and;
10. Encourage and support the officers of the Barony and recommend their replacements to the Kingdom officers and Crown as the need arises.

IV. Specific Obligations of the CoronetEdit

A. The Coronet must be residents of the Barony and reside within the Barony throughout their term on the Baronial thrones.
B. The Coronet must be present at their Coronet Tourney, their Investiture, and the Coronet Tourney and Investiture of their successors.
C. The Coronet must maintain membership in the Society for Creative Anachronism, Inc. during their tenure on the Baronial thrones.

V. Rights and Privileges of the CoronetEdit

A. The Coronet may give such awards as shall be specifically delegated to them by the Crown of the West.
B. The Coronet shall have the right to establish and make nonarmigerous awards and honors specific to the Barony to acknowledge the skills and service of its populace. They shall consult first with the Golden Peach Pursuivant and the Vesper Principal Herald of the West, to insure that award names and tokens are properly used.
C. The Coronet shall have the right to present Baronial awards and honors to members of the populace.
D. The Coronet shall have the right to receive and make use of gifts to the Barony for the use of the Coronet, and to preserve such gifts for the Barony.
E. The Coronet shall have the right to receive and keep such personal gifts as may be made to them.

VI. Failure to Serve as the CoronetEdit

A. Should either the Baron or Baroness, through no fault of his/her own, be unable to attend the Coronet Tourney and investiture of his/her successors, the one who attends the event shall perform the necessary functions of both to maintain a smooth transfer. In such a case, the departing Baron or Baroness shall be considered to have fulfilled his/her obligations to the Barony and Coronet and shall be considered to have completed his/her tenure.
B. Should either the Baron or Baroness be unable for whatever reason to fulfill his/her term in office, he/she must abdicate by writing to the Baronial Seneschal, Crown, and other member of the Coronet.
C. In case of an abdication, specific measures to maintain the Coronet shall apply, namely:
1. Should either the Baron or Baroness abdicate, the other shall assume the duties of both for the remainder of their tenure, regardless of which is the Palatine Baron/ess. The remaining member of the Coronet may not elect to take a new companion to share the Coronet;
2. Should both the Baron and Baroness abdicate, the Baronial Seneschal shall immediately contact the Crown of the West to determine which of two courses should apply:
a. The preceding Baron and Baroness may be asked by the Crown to serve the remaining portion of the reign, or the Crown may appoint the Baronial Seneschal vicar. If a vicarage is established, no awards may be given out or courts held by the vicar.
b. If the Crown wishes, a new Coronet Tourney shall be held as soon as possible, which shall be presided over by at least two of the three offices of Baronial Seneschal, Baronial Herald, and Baronial Marshal: the victor of this list will be invested and serve out the tenure of the failed Coronet regardless of the time remaining.
D. Should either the Baron or Baroness leave the Barony for more than a month without contacting the Baronial Seneschal during that time, this shall count as failure and de facto abdication.
E. Should abdications be brought about through no fault of the abdicating Baron or Baroness, their successors shall determine if they should be recognized for their time on the throne.

VII. Baronial OfficersEdit

A. The officers of the Barony shall be:
1. Seneschal;
2. Herald (Golden Peach Pursuivant);
3. Marshal;
4. Minister of Arts (may combine with Minister of Sciences);
5. Minister of Sciences (may combine with Minister of Arts);
6. Exchequer;
7. Chronicler;
8. Web Minister (may serve as Chronicler);
9. Chirurgeon
10. Scribe;
B. The Coronet may create other offices as shall be needed. Any new offices coming under the auspices of one of the offices mentioned above shall be administered as an adjunct deputy position to that office and report to that officer.
C. Baronial officers will report to their kingdom superiors on a schedule as set by the kingdom officer, and monthly to the Coronet, with a copy being sent to the Seneschal for the files.
D. Baronial officers will oversee the activities of their deputies as well as the local officers, who will report to them.
E. In as much as is possible, the Baronial roster of officers should be dispersed throughout the Barony; all should attempt to attend Coronet lists and investitures.
F. Local branches shall have at least a Seneschal, a Herald, and either a Marshal or Arts and Sciences officer. If the local group lacks a Reeve, the Seneschal shall perform that function.
G. The Baronial Chronicler is responsible for publishing the Far West Tidings, the Baronial newsletter, on a regular basis.

VIII. Rights and Duties of the PopulaceEdit

A. The populace of the Barony has the rights accorded to it by the governing documents of the Society for Creative Anachronism, Inc., the laws of the West Kingdom, and this document.
B. The populace may display Baronial heraldry as described in Section XIV herein.
C. Those of the populace bringing small children or pets to events or other functions are responsible for their care and behavior.
D. The populace should refrain from smoking in the confines of the feast hall, other places where there is little ventilation, or at court.
E. The populace should exercise care that blatant mundanities are not on obvious display.

IX. Geographical Divisions within the BaronyEdit

A. The Barony shall consist of several local groups, which shall be styled ports, strongholds, cantons or colleges. The first two designations are reserved for military bases, the third for civilian-based groups, the last for groups based in local colleges or universities.
B. Each branch must meet the requirements for it established in the governing documents of the Society for Creative Anachronism, Inc., the laws of the West Kingdom, and this document.
C. The officers of each branch, regardless of designation or location, will report to their Baronial superiors on a schedule set by the Baronial officer.
D. When an existing group is incorporated into the Barony, it shall become a port, stronghold, canton or college.
E. Whenever possible, the Baronial Seneschal, with the approval of the Coronet, will designate a Society contact person for an area which has yet to be developed.

X. Events within the BaronyEdit

A. There shall be two Baronial Coronet Tourneys and Investitures per Society year. They shall be held in April and October.
1. Ideally, the competition for the Coronet will be held in the morning on Saturday, and the investiture of the victor at a ceremony that evening or the next morning, as the victor chooses.
2. There shall be a Baronial Championship Tourney held in conjunction with the Baronial Coronet event to determine the Baronial Champion for that reign.
3. There also shall be a Baronial Arts and Science Championship Tourney held in conjunction with the Baronial Coronet event to determine the Baronial Champion of the Arts and Sciences for that Reign. Rules for the Baronial Arts and Sciences Championship Tourney shall be the same as for the Arts and Sciences Baronial Coronet Tourney (XI.F.), save that entrants must compete in at least three (3) categories.
4. If there are fewer than two competitors for either Baronial Championship Tourney, martial or arts and sciences, that tournament will be held at a later event at the pleasure of the new Coronets.
B. The Barony was founded on June 20, A.S. XXII (c.e. 1987). There shall be a Baronial event to celebrate this anniversary. The event should be held as close as possible to June 20.
C. Petitions to hold Baronial events must be submitted to the Coronet with sufficient time to allow decisions and plans to be made.
D. Groups planning to hold a local event are responsible for notifying the local and Baronial Chronicler and/or Web Minister of such plans so that they may be sufficiently publicized.

XI. Baronial TourneyEdit

A. The Baronial Coronet Tourney shall be rotated among the groups in as much as is feasible. No group may host it twice in a row, and the hosting group must be able to field at least five (5) competitors for the Coronet.
B. The usual order for Coronet Tourneys shall be to alternate between standard heavy weapons list, rapier and an arts and sciences tourney.
C. Competitors for the Coronet and prospective consorts must meet the following requirements:
1. Both must have been residents of the Barony for at least one (1) month, and promise to do their utmost to remain so during their reign should they win;
2. Both must be paid members of the Society, one must be a subscribing member;
3. Both must possess a working knowledge of the structure of the SCA, the West Kingdom, the Palatine Barony of the Far West, and the offices of the Coronet;
4. Both must be at least eighteen (18) years of age on the date of the Tourney. (The Coronet may choose to waive the age factor. This decision shall be made on a case-by-case basis providing the gentle is armigerous. Under no circumstances shall both be under 18.);
5. Neither can be already a landed noble (the current Coronet, territorial Barons, prince/sses, kings or queens) at the time of the Tourney; and
6. Both must be otherwise acceptable to the Coronet.
7. Competitors may compete in absentia with prior Coronet approval. If neither competitor nor consort is present but proves successful, a Viceroy will be chosen from among the attendees. The Viceroy shall be a resident of the same branch as the victor and will be entrusted with presenting the coronet to the victor and receiving their oath of homage to the Crown of the West.
D. The victors of the Coronet Tourney shall be called "Lord and Lady of the Far West" until their investiture.
E. If the Tourney is standard SCA heavy weapons; the Coronet may apply such specifics as it wishes provided they do not violate the governing documents of the Society for Creative Anachronism, Inc., the Laws of the West Kingdom, or this document.
F. If the Tourney is arts and sciences, certain conventions must be met. They are:
1. The arts and sciences tourney must consist of at least five (5) categories chosen by the competitor, unless otherwise specified by the Coronet. These could include, but are not limited to, such medieval arts and sciences as calligraphy, illumination, embroidery, bardic arts, dance, chess, heraldry, and costuming. Others may be added at the behest of the Coronet.
2. All arts and science entries to the Coronet Tournament shall include documentation, preferably three (3) sources. Each entry shall be judged based on the following criteria: Documentation, Authenticity, Creativity, Technical merit, and Overall impression;
3. Entries for the arts and sciences competitions shall have been completed while the competitor is in residence, and never have won a Baronial or Kingdom arts and sciences competition.
4. Specific details of the Tourney will be published in the Far West Tidings as far in advance as possible.
5. The entries will be judged by the Coronet, those who have won the Coronet, the Baronial Seneschal, Baronial Ministers of the Arts and Sciences, and any other qualified gentles the Coronet should choose to invite.
G. The new Palatine Baron/ess shall have the right to determine where the next Coronet Tourney shall be held.
H. In the event that a Coronet Tourney cannot be held, the Coronet will consult the Baronial Seneschal and the Crown of the West to determine the cause, and to decide if the Coronet should continue in extended rule or a vicarage should be created.

XII. Succession of the Baronial CoronetEdit

A. The Investiture of the Lord and Lady of the Far West shall take place either in the evening of the day of the Coronet Tourney or the next morning, as they prefer.
B. The new Coronet shall swear fealty to the Crown of the West as part of the ceremony, and shall forward a written statement of same to the Crown.
C. All Baronial regalia shall be accounted for by the current Coronet and Baronial Seneschal before being passed to the new Coronet at the time of investiture. The New Coronet, before the end of the tournament day, shall sign for all regalia.
D. Should either the Lord or Lady of the Far West fail to accept the investiture, the following shall happen:
1. The Tourney (regardless of whether it was a martial list or arts and sciences) shall be declared null and void;
2. The Baronial Champion Tourney (should the Baronial Tourney be martial) or Baronial Arts and Sciences Champion Tourney (should the Baronial Tourney be arts and sciences) scheduled in conjunction with the Coronet Tourney shall be the new Coronet Tourney;
3. The victor in that tourney shall be invested immediately, and the runner up shall be Baronial Champion or Baronial Arts and Sciences Champion, accordingly;
4. The gentles who failed to accept investiture shall be banned from competing for the Coronet for a space of one year (i.e. two Coronet Tourneys); and
5. This emergency procedure shall not interfere with the usual rotations of arts and sciences tourneys and heavy weapons lists.
6. If there are fewer than two competitors in the appropriate Championship Tourney, the other Championship Tourney shall be the new Coronet Tourney.
E. The new Coronet shall recognize their immediate predecessors for their service to the Barony by inducting them into the Order of the Leaping Dolphin.

XIII. Baronial Awards and HonorsEdit

A. In the Palatine Barony of the Far West, there shall exist awards to recognize the skills and service of the populace. The earliest awards were established on June 20, A.S. XXII (c.e. 1987) by Their Excellencies Alwyn and Rhiannon, founding Baron Palatine and Baroness Palatine of the Far West.
B. Awards shall consist of honors and memberships in orders. These differ in that membership in orders can be bestowed to a person only once, while honors can be awarded time and time again.
C. The Crown of the West shall be, during Their tenure on the throne, the Protectors of the Orders/Awards and as such, shall be awarded the recognition and status as members of the orders.
D. The Palatine Baron/ess of the Far West and his/her consort shall be, during their tenure on the throne, the Principals of all the Orders/Awards of the Barony. The Baronial Coronets are included for they are the creators of, heads of, and full members of each Order/Award and as such, shall be awarded the recognition and status as members of the orders.
E. The Baronial Orders are:
1. The Order of the Sea Griffon. This Order recognizes those who are the very ideal of what the gentry of the current Middle Ages should be. It was established to recognize members of the populace who have made great sacrifices of themselves in service to the Barony, who have demonstrated great courtesy, chivalry, and grace at all times, and who have achieved much in the arts and sciences. This is a polling order; no member may be inducted unless the other members are in majority agreement. Every effort should be made to contact all members of the order. A majority of the members may also approach the Coronet with a candidate; however, in such a case, the Coronet is not obligated to induct members proposed by the order itself. The order was named after the principal charge on the arms of His Excellency Alwyn, Founding Baron Palatine of the Far West. The order was created by Baron Palatine Edward and Baroness Marixsa on November 3, A.S. XXVI (c.e. 1991). A companion of this order is styled "Companion of the Order of the Sea Griffon" any may append the initials "C.S.G." after his/her name. The token for this order is a silver-colored sea griffon on a red field, pendant from a yellow ribbon.
2. The Order of the Burdened Bouget. This is the Baronial service award. It was established to recognize members of the populace who have made great sacrifices of themselves in service to the Barony. A companion of this order is styled "Bearer of the Burdened Bouget" and may append the initials "B.B.B." after his/her name. The token for the order is a silver-colored bouget pendant from a red ribbon.
3. The Order of the Attic Helm. This is the Baronial award given to recognize fighters of high caliber. It was established to recognize members who, in addition to fighting skills, train new fighters and show chivalry on and off the field. A companion of this order is styled "Companion of the Order of the Attic Helm" and may append the initials "C.A.H." after his/her name. The token for the order is a gold-colored image of a Greek helm pendant from a red and gold ribbon.
4. The Order of the Oriental Dragon. This is the Baronial award given to recognize great skills in the arts or sciences. It is given to those who both do and teach. A companion of this order is styled "Companion of the Order of the Oriental Dragon" and may append the initials "C.O.D." after his/her name. The token for the order is a gold-colored dragon on a billet of green jade pendant from a chain.
5. The Order of the Baronial Gallant. This is the Baronial award established to honor those members of the Barony who are at all times examples of courtesy and grace. A companion of this order is styled "Companion of the Order of the Baronial Gallant" and may append the initials "C.B.G." after his/her name.
6. The Order of the Empty Shell. This is the Baronial award established to honor those members of the Barony who have participated in the Barony's various activities thereby enriching it. This order is only given to members who are leaving the Barony. A companion of this order is styled "Companion of the Order of the Empty Shell" and may append the initials "C.O.E.S." after his/her name. The token of the Order is a small empty shell pendant from a blue and silver ribbon.
7. The Order of the Leaping Dolphin. Realizing that the Barony has no official way of recognizing those who have in the past served as the Coronet, Baron Palatine Edward and Baroness Marixsa created this award on January 4, A.S. XXVI (c.e. 1992). It is given by the new Coronets at their investiture to their predecessors, and none may be inducted into the order who have not ruled as Baron and Baroness. All past Coronets shall be granted this recognition and shall be inducted to the order upon successful completion of their term. Should a Coronet abdicate for whatever reason(s), induction into the order will be considered on a case by case basis by the subsequent Coronet. Induction after an abdication is not guaranteed. A companion of this order is styled "Companion of the Order of the Leaping Dolphin" and may append the initials "C.L.D." after his/her name. Members of the order may display the Baronial badge below a baronial coronet.
F. The honors of the Barony are as follows:
1. The Ginger Flower. This honor was established by Palatine Baroness Trude and Baron Wulfric on December 5, A.S. XXII (c.e. 1987), and is presented to fighters whose prowess on the field of battle is exceeded only by their ability to die with panache and flair.
2. Coronet's Appreciation. This honor was established by Palatine Baron Ulrich and Baroness Ariel in June, A.S. XXV (c.e. 1990). It is presented to those who have through some special deed or service made life easier for the Coronet.
3. Far West Support. This honor was established by Palatine Baron Edward and Baroness Marixsa on January 4, A.S. XXVI (c.e. 1992) to recognize continued work for the growth of the Barony in such diverse areas as autocrating, running demos, feastocratting or gold key and generally lending a helping hand where needed.
4. Izanagi's Spear. This honor was established to recognize and encourage all up and coming youths of the Barony who perform and excel in the graces, virtues, skills, and talents that the Society professes. This honor shall be given to all youths whom the Coronet deems worthy and needful of recognition by the Populace of the Barony and Society in general.

XIV. Baronial Heraldic Insignia and DisplayEdit

A. The arms of the Palatine Barony of the Far West are: Gules, a dolphin embowed naiant argent through a laurel wreath Or, all between three water bougets argent.
1. The Baronial arms shall not be displayed save when the Coronet is present.
2. The Baronial arms may be displayed by the Coronet, as they deem appropriate.
B. The badge of the Palatine Barony of the Far West is: A dolphin embowed naiant argent through an annulet Or.
1. The populace may display the Baronial badge, and are encouraged to do so.
2. Baronial guards and the Baronial Champions may wear a tabard "per pale Or and gules" with the badge over the left breast.
C. The ensign of the Palatine Barony of the Far West, subject to the approval of the Laurel Sovereign of Arms, is: Gules, a dolphin embowed argent, naiant through an annulet, and a dexter tierce Or. The populace may fly the ensign of the Barony and are encouraged to do so, at all functions.
D. Each local branch of the Barony shall register its name and device with the College of Arms. Local arms may be displayed to serve as a rallying point for the group.
1. The arms of the Stronghold of Warrior's Gate (South Korea) are: Gules, a laurel wreath Or surmounted by a tower with open gates argent, issuant from a base Or, in chief a bezant.
2. The arms of the Stronghold of Eternal Winds (Misawa, Japan) are: Per chevron dovetailed gules and argent, two wings conjoined in lure argent and a laurel wreath vert.
3. The arms of the Canton of Battle Rock (Okinawa, Japan) are: Per chevron azure and vert, on a sun within a laurel wreath Or a phoenix rousant to sinister wings addorsed Gules.
4. The arms of the Stronghold of Vale de Draco (Tokyo, Japan) have not yet been approved.
5. The arms of the Stronghold of Fortaleza de Islas de las Velas Latinas (Guam, Tinnian, Marinas Islands) are: Per pale azure and argent a ship contourny and in chief two laurel wreaths counterchanged.
6. The arms of the incipient Stronghold of the Argent Serpent (Iwakuni, Japan) have not yet been approved.
E. The arms of the other branches will be listed when approved by the Laurel Sovereign of Arms.

XV. Changes to this DocumentEdit

A. The Coronet may make such changes, additions, and deletions as they deem appropriate after consultations with the Baronial Officers and gaining the approval of the Crown of the West, and Baronial and Kingdom Seneschals.
B. Before such changes can be put into effect; they must be published in Far West Tidings and announced at an official event as defined by the governing documents of the SCA, Inc.

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