GLOSSARY - COMBAT GENERAL AND NON-CONTACT PARTICIPATION TERMS
of Blows: Upon receiving a valid blow to any area
of the body that would be judged lethal or totally disabling,
the receiving Combatant should acknowledge such by quickly
failing to the ground. An immediate verbal response from the
Combatant so struck (such as "good) will help to insure that
the Combatant is not struck again while on the way down. At
the discretion of the Marshals, the fall to the ground may
be waived if the ground conditions are deemed to deserve such
a precaution. A verbal acknowledgment shall then be considered
Authorization is the written permission, granted by the Society
for Creative Anachronism, Inc., through this Kingdom's Authorizing
Marshals, to participate in SCA Combat Related Activities.
Authorization is a requirement for all participants.
Card: A card issued by the Earl Marshal's Office
to signify that the individual identified thereby has satisfactorily
undergone an Authorization Procedure appropriate to the area(s)
of desired participation as officially marked on the back
of the Authorization Card by an Authorizing Marshal. A currently
valid Authorization Card allows the individual to be a Participant
only in those SCA Combat Related Activities that have been
Procedure: A procedure which determines that an individual
desiring to be a Participant in any SCA combat-related has,
a Waiver and Informed Consent to Participate form.
and become familiar with the Rules and Regulations appropriate
to the area of desired participation.
allowed to gain practical experience in the area of desired
participation under controlled circumstances.
observed by a proper Authorizing Marshal while demonstrating
acceptable abilities in the area of desired participation.
This will ensure that the individual wishing to be a Participant
in SCA combat-related activities
a combatant, does not constitute an exceptional hazard to
themselves or others.
a marshal, is capable of properly conducting combatants on
a non-contact participant, does not present an exceptional
to themselves or others while in the vicinity of ongoing combat.
Marshal: An official of the SCA Inc. who has the
authority to authorize individuals to participate in SCA combat-related
activities within the Kingdom of Ansteorra.
Refers to any of the sanctioned SCA combat activities conducted
at a Society event. (See SCA Combat-Related Activities)
An individual Authorized to be a Participant as a
fighter in SCA Combat Activities.
(Not Legal). The circling of a grounded opponent, either in
or out of striking range, in order to gain unfair offensive
advantage. The following guidelines should be followed when
dealing with a grounded opponent.
on a grounded Combatant must be done from the direction chosen
by the grounded Combatant. Such a Combatant shall orient his
defensive front toward his standing opponent. The standing
opponent must close based on that orientation.
closing, the standing Combatant must keep at least one foot
in front of his grounded opponent. The standing fighter's
other foot shall not step past his grounded opponent so far
as to cause the standing fighter to straddle the grounded
opponent or to cause the foot in front to move beside or behind
the grounded opponent.
3. A standing
Combatant in the above described position shall be deemed
in the legal zone and may attack so long as he or she stays
within that zone.
the standing Combatant decide to break off his attack, he
should back out in generally the same direction that they
had closed from.
attacks are permissible in melee only. Any strike from a passing
Combatant in melee must be made while closing from the front
and only while in the legal zone as described above. No further
strike may be made once the passing Combatant has moved in
any way beyond, or out of, the legal zone.
Action: Action taken against a Participant for violations
of the Rules and Regulations.
Warned: Official warnings will be given to a Participant
in no uncertain terms. Such a warning must include an explanation
of the rule(s) being violated by the Participant. Any Participant
may be removed from the Field d the Participant fails to heed
the warnings. Such a Participant may also be subject to disciplinary
Marshal: One of the Crown's Great Officers of State.
Also the chief Warranted Marshal in the Kingdom who is responsible
for the conduct of all SCA Combat Related Activities within
Any and all weapons, armor, shields or other defensive
items used by a Combatant during combat.
Force: Significantly more force than would normally
be required by a prudent person to acknowledge a blow. It
should be noted that, during armored combat, using certain
techniques with some weapons can result in the delivery of
blows that strike with excessive force. These techniques are
illegal and include, but are not limited to:
Harpooning: Thrusting with a spear or other
thrusting pole weapon while pushing the butt end of the weapon
with the palm of the hand or fingers.
Running Thrust: Executing a thrust while
running at an opponent.
with force in an arc greater than 90 degrees with any two-
weapon (with unlimited grip area) which exceeds five feet
with force in an arc greater than 180 degrees with any two
handed weapon (with limited grip area) which exceeds five
feet in length.
An area, with or without physical boundaries, designated for
the conducting of SCA combat related activities.
Rapier Marshal: The Warranted Officer of State who
is entrusted with monitoring the safety and conduct of all
SCA Rapier Combat Related Activities within the Kingdom. The
Kingdom Rapier Marshal works apart from, but under the jurisdiction
of, the Earl Marshal.
Any contest designed for the conducting of SCA combat-related
activities (i.e. tournaments involving individuals or teams).
Official: The individual given the responsibility
for designing and/or organizing the List at a Society event.
The List Official should be appointed by either the Marshal-in-Charge,
the Autocrat, or the Ranking Nobility.
Knight Marshal: The chief Warranted Marshal of a
local group that is responsible for the conduct of all SCA
combat-related activities within that particular group, be
it a Barony, Shire, Canton, etc. (The local Knight Marshal
is not necessarily a belted fighter.) The responsibility for
the conduct of all SCA Rapier combat-related activity within
a local Knight Marshal's jurisdiction will be assumed by the
Kingdom Rapier Marshal, and then delegated to a Warranted
Local Rapier Marshal.
Rapier Marshal: The Warranted Rapier Marshal of a
local group who is responsible for the conduct of all SCA
Rapier Combat Related Activities within that particular group.
An individual who is monitoring the safety and conduct of
SCA combat related activities on the field. Individuals doing
the marshaling at Society events may or may not be Warranted
marshals, but they must, at minimum, have Authorization to
participate as a marshal in the appropriate SCA Combat style,
and the Marshal-In-Charge must deem them competent.
The Warranted Marshal who is responsible for monitoring the
safety and conduct of SCA combat-related activities at a Society
event as well as assuring that all applicable Rules and Regulations
of the SCA Inc. and the Kingdom of Ansteorra are being followed
by all participants.
The body of Warranted Marshals within the Kingdom that is
headed by the Earl Marshal. Also referred to as the "Kingdom
of the Society: The chief Warranted Marshal of the
Society for Creative Anachronism, Inc. who is responsible
for the monitoring of all SCA combat-related activities within
the Society. Also referred to as the "Society Marshal".
A combat that involves teams or groups of Combatants rather
than individual Combatants. Such scenarios are typically fought
with "Melee rules". Melee Rules differ slightly from the rules
regarding single combat bouts. The differences have been noted
within this Handbook where applicable.
Zone: The zones or areas that have been designated
by the Marshal-In Charge as illegal areas for the firing/throwing
of any kind of projectiles. Any target that might otherwise
be considered a legal target may not be attacked with any
kind of missile fire when the would-be target's positioning
would jeopardize the No-Firing Zone.
Participant/Participation: An individual Authorized
to participate in those SCA combat-related activities that
do not involve engaging in, or the conducting of, actual Combat.
Examples of such activities may include, but are not limited
to: Scouting, Field Heralding, Banner Bearing, Water Bearing,
etc.. These individuals may actually be on the field and in
the vicinity of ongoing Combat.
An individual Authorized to participate in any of the SCA
Target: Prohibited targets include the following:
Non-Contact Participant on the field.
Marshal on the field.
other individual, not fully armored, that may be on the field
with or without authorization.
individual, fully armored or not, outside the designated boundaries
of the field.
Combatant on the field prior to the command of "LAY ON" or
while a "HOLD" is in effect.
discretion of the Sovereign, properly marshaled Combatants,
off and away from all spectators and the field, that are engaged
in warm-up activity or instruction, will not be considered
Prohibited Targets within the context of their activities.
Weapon: Refers to an actual weapon, whether an original
or reproduction, that may be fully or semifunctional.
Combat-Related Activities: Include combat, marshaling
and non-contact participation for both heavy & light weapons.
Weapon: Any weapon that has been approved by the Marshallate
for use upon the field during SCA Combat Activities.
Combat: A Combat that involves only two individuals
such as a about in a typical List that does not involve teams
or groups. The rules regarding single combat differ slightly
from those regarding melees. The differences have been noted
within this Handbook where applicable.
The individual who is current reigning King or Queen
that was the actual victor of the Crown List by right of arms.
The Sovereign is the final Marshallate authority within the
Kingdom. Also called the "Crown".
from Behind: (not legal)
single combat, opportunities to strike from behind are rare
and are typically covered by the rules regarding Helpless
Opponents. Striking an opponent from the rear, while they
are attempting to execute an offensive or defensive maneuver
that involves the voluntary or intentional turning of his/her
back, shall not be considered a violation of this convention.
melee, the likelihood of coming up behind an opponent is great
and caution must be used to assure that this convention is
not violated. A Combatant must make certain that he/she has
gotten their opponent's attention and that the opponent has
had an opportunity to recognize a threat before blows are
thrown. An opponent who purposefully ignores valid attempts
to get their attention and keeps his/her back turned shall
be deemed to be in violation of the Rules as stated within
the Conventions of Combat. It shall be generally accepted
that a Combatant has made valid attempts to get an opponent's
attention when the following guidelines are satisfied:
approaching Combatant shall attempt to got the opponent to
turn and face him/(er by verbally calling a clearly audible
warning about the approaching Combatant's presence and threat.
the opponent does not respond, the approaching Combatant may
lightly tap (not strike) the opponent with a weapon, or lightly
press (not shove) the opponent with a shield or buckler in
order to give some physical clue that a foe is besieging them
at the rear. This tap or press should be accompanied by another
c. A second
such tap or press along with verbal warning may be given.
A Combatant who has not responded to these valid attempts
to get their attention shall be considered to be in violation
of the Rules as stated above. Such a Combatant still may not
be struck though he/she may be subject to disciplinary action
by the Marshallate. Should the opponent turn to face the approaching
Combatant, blows may only be thrown at such time as the opponent
has had an opportunity to recognize a threat.
point the approaching Combatant may elect not to make any,
or any further, attempts to get the opponent to turn, but
may instead opt to move around to the front of his/her opponent
to initiate the engagement. However, leaping just into view
and simultaneously striking the opponent without warning will
NOT be allowed. The opponent must be given an opportunity
to recognize threat before blows are thrown. An opponent shall
be deemed to have been given the opportunity to recognize
threat when one of the following guidelines has been satisfied:
approaching Combatant has moved far enough around the opponent
that he can see both eyes of the opponent.
opponent has turned far enough around so that both his eyes
can be seen by the approaching Combatant.
will be expected to obey the spirit of these guidelines when
dealing with opponents whose head protection does not allow
the eyes to actually be seen.
prospective opponent's attention has been obtained, it is
the responsibility of the acknowledging Combatant to verify
that an individual is in fact a Combatant (not perhaps a Marshal
or some other unarmored Participant trying to get the Combatant's
attention) before responding by throwing a blow. Therefore,
simultaneous turning and striking will not be allowed.
and Informed consent to Participate Form: A document
executed by an individual desiring to be a Participant in
SCA combat-related activities that acknowledges the individuals
awareness of the potential hazards of being a Participant
and expresses an agreement by the individual to abide by the
Rules and Regulations as set forth by the Society for Creative
Anachronism, Inc. and it's Officials. A copy of this document
will be kept on file with the Earl Marshal's Office. Also
called a "Participation Waiver" or just "Waiver". (Always
be sure to read and understand any waiver before you sign
Large scale melees. Wars fought with other Kingdoms may use
rules and regulations that are an agreed upon mixture of the
rules and regulations of the involved Kingdoms. If such is
the case, a Marshallate briefing to explain the rules and
regulations will be given to all Participants prior to the
start of any Combat Activities.
Marshal: An individual Warranted by the Society for
Creative Anachronism, Inc., and/or it's designated officials,
who is entrusted with monitoring the safety and conduct of
SCA combat-related activities. Warranted Marshals are responsible
for enforcement of all applicable Rules and Regulations of
the SCA Inc. and the Kingdom of Ansteorra at Society events.
To surrender with or without terms. In the case of Combat
Archers or siege engine operators, however, to voluntarily
yield without having been requested to do so shall be considered
to be the same as that Participant having been slain.