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The Barony of Dragonship Haven once again welcomes the artisans and scientists of the Kingdom to their annual St. Elegius Arts and Sciences Faire and Competition on November 15th in Meriden CT.  In addition to the arts & sciences competition, the day will include several martial activities, the Master Alexander Challenge, a hearty day board, and a dessert revel to celebrate the Barony of Dragonship Haven’s Birthday.

St. Eligius Arts and Sciences Competition

Viking embroidered blouse

Viking embroidered blouse as exhibited in the AS 48 St. Elegius competition

The St. Eligius Arts and Sciences Competition is designed to be something like a martial tourney divided into different levels of competition based on the competitor’s skill level, and judged in a face-to-face style that is allegorical of armored combat. 

Competition levels

Each contestant declares his or her entry as belonging to one of the following levels. Entrants are allowed to choose the correct level for each entry and to enter different items at different levels. 

Novices have entered a few small competitions (or none) and feel rather inexperienced in Art and Science contests. (Analogy: Novice Tourney) Entries will further be divided into ‘New to A&S Contests’ and ‘New to the SCA’ (>3 years) at the registration table.

Artisans have entered competitions and have gotten feedback & refined their entry so it shows to best advantage. (Analogy: Cadet’s/Squire’s Tourney)

Experienced competitors have entered several local or Kingdom-wide contests. This group also includes any Laurel whose entry is anything-BUT-what-they-were-laureled-for. (Analogy: competes in King & Queen’s Champion Tourney)

Laurels & masters are either members of the Order of the Laurel entering examples of the work(s) for which they received their recognition, or any non-Laurel who chooses to enter in this group, thus they are scored on their their mastery of an art or science. (Analogy: competes in Best of the Knowne World Tourney)

Competition Rules

  1. Face-to-face scoring is the order of the day so come prepared to talk about your work. We contend that A&S contest is a form of tourney, so it’s an in-person sport. You must be present to score & be scored.
  2. Since the combatants declare the winner of a martial bout, St. Eligius entrants will score entries in their contest group: novices scoring novice entries, artisans scoring artisan entries; Laurels scoring Laurels & masters entries etc. An orientation to scoring will be available for every entrant and a consultant will be available for each group. Use them for info, but make up your own mind.
  3. Not all entries from the same person must be entered at the same level. Please limit entries to not more than 3 in a level, or 5 total. (Note: a Laurel is never a novice or an artisan, but may properly enter as Experienced Competitor for new artforms and/or as Laurel/master entering something for which they received their Laurel.)
  4. Performance entries should NOT be longer than 5 minutes for solos, or up to 10 minutes for groups.
  5. Research papers are limited to 8 pages and must be received in electronic format by the competition coordinator 2 weeks before competition (Nov 3rd). They will be read by non-contestants, but face-to-face scoring will still occur.
  6. All food, beverage, and cosmetic entries must have a full ingredients list to avoid foreseeable allergies.
  7. Works too bulky to transport may be entered using photographs and write-ups. Works-in-progress are welcome.
  8. There is no age limit on entries. Bring your best even if you made it 20+ years ago.
  9. A St. Eligius 12 Question sheet should accompany entries in this contest (strongly recommended). It is OK to say “see documentation”; and provide a more formal write-up. Any pictures of related items or extant examples should be included to help those scoring your work. Your documentation from prior competitions/displays can be included for completeness. Sources should be generally regarded as reputable and applicable to the entry.
  10. Use of smart phones or computers to show images or references or is permitted but not required. No equipment will be supplied, but you may share or borrow. NO internet access is available.
Glass beads made in a charcoal kiln as exhibited in last year's St. Elegius competition.

Glass beads made in a charcoal kiln as exhibited in last year’s St. Elegius competition.

Prizes will be awarded during court to the gentles achieving the highest single-entry score in each of the 5 groups: Novice 1 and Novice 2, Artisan, Experienced competitor, Laurels & masters.

Special competitions also being held concurrently.

St. Eligius 12 question sheet is NOT needed for these competitions.
Scoring is subjective on a 0 to 100 scale as shown on score sheet.

Medieval Moment

In honor of our patron, St. Eligius, we are asking that entries include a brief description of your experience of a Medieval Moment during the preparation of your project. Please describe (verbally or in writing) something that brought you closer to the artisan who originated the work you have adapted or used for inspiration. Descriptions may be written or verbal. A good story always scores well. See question # 11 in St. Eligius 12 Questions.

Master Alexander Challenge

In the spirit of Master Alexander the Younger, please enter an example of your work in an art that is new to you within the last year. New techniques within the art that you already practice do not count (i.e. glassblowing to enameling of blown glass beakers is an expansion of a skill, not a new-to-you art form.) Scoring will be only on the entry’s meeting the criteria of the art being new to you, and not on full documentation or mastery of the art. Minimal documentation of methods and how this is new to you is required. The intent is to give a supportive venue for trying new arts without the rigors of open competition. The prize is will be chosen and presented by Lady Cassandra de Matisse or her representative.

Artisan’s Progress

Display 3-5 examples of your work showing how your skill has progressed over the years. Works should include something from very early in your career (even if that was last week). Works may (but need not) be entered for individual scores. This competition is a chance to show your development as an artisan. Documentation should be very brief with rough dates of completion.

SCA Kluge:

Bring your best non-period items with a medieval flair (e.g. camp furniture, phone holder, lawn ornament) for recognition in this category.

Populace Choice:

Vote with beans for your favorite entry. Most beans wins.

Baron’s Choice:

Catch the Baron’s eye and gain his praise and a prize.

Beyond the Arts and Sciences Competition

Those artists and scientists who prefer not to be involved in scoring and being scored are warmly encouraged to DISPLAY their works for the delight and amazement of the populace. Please consider showing your works and let us see what you’re up to! Works-in-progress are welcome.

Those with a more martial inclination are well-provided with activities during the day as well.  List fields for both armored and rapier combat will be available and the Barony of Dragonship Haven will be holding tournaments to choose their new Champions in both disciplines.