Pas D'Armes

The Players:

Chalice King of Arms - The Organizer
Knight(or Squire) of Honour - Acts as a Marshal of the List
The Ladies - Women of Eminent Virtue who are the Judges of Chivilary
Combatants - Fighters of Honor and Chivilary

The Schedule:

10:30 - 11:00 Helmshau and choosing of the knight or squire of honour
11:00 - 11:30 Armour inspection. List verifications. Authorizations
11:30 - 12:00 Swearing of the fighters. Rules of the list explained
12:00 - 12:15 Entering of the lists
12:15 - 14:00 The Tournament
14:00 - 15:30 Grand Melee
15:30 - 16:00 Handing out Prizes

The Acts:

The Helmshau

All fighters that intend to participate in the pas d'armes must bring their helm, banners, and shields to the judges. This is the time that the teams are picked by the judges for the melee round.
At this time, the ladies will vote for the Knight/Squire of Honor. A box will be provided with paper, and pin, a list of participants will be pervaded as well. After the Helmshau has finished, the judges will count the votes for each name, and the name with the most votes will be called in court by the Chalice King of Arms.

The Duties of a Knight of Honour
With the permission of the court, and after counting the votes, the Chalice King of Arms willbe called before the court.
The knight (or squire) of honor will have the function of a marshal in the lists. If he or she should lower the cloth over a fighter, that fighter is under the protection of the ladies and may not be struck until the cloth is again removed. (For melees only).
Note: If the chosen fighter is not qualified as a marshal, he will be considered under the instruction of the presiding marshal of the tournament.

Swearing of the Fighters
After the marshal has inspected the armor and weapons, there will be a short ceremony where the fighters must swear to follow the rules of the tourney and observe the orders of the judges. There are two sets of rules outlined here in.

For Melee:

  1. All combatants shall bear themselves with good grace, to advance the cause of chivalry rather than the base spirit of victory.
  2. There shall be no thrusts to the face, as this was not generally practiced in tournaments.
  3. Each combatant shall comport themselves bearing mutual responsibility for themselves and for their opponent. The safety of your opponent is your responsibility.
  4. There will be no striking from behind and only single-handed swords are allowed. "Killing" from behind is expressly forbidden, as this is a cowardly act hardly appropriate for knights such as yourselves.
  5. Apart from the rules above, ordinary SCA group combat rules apply.
  6. When a fighter has received a good blow (to any legal target area) the fighter should acknowledge the blow by saying 'Well struck milord' or something similar. A blow to the arm or leg does not incur the loss of that limb. After the required amount of blows has been struck the fighter must exit the list.
  7. There will be a person in the list holding a piece of cloth on a stick. This person is the knight (or squire) of Honor and his job is similar to that of a marshal. If he should lower the cloth over a fighter, that fighter is under the protection of the ladies and may not be struck until the cloth is again removed (local hold).
  8. The knight (or squire) of Honor may not be struck.
  9. The tourney will continue until the judge's signal the end of the tourney.
For Single Combat:
  1. All combatants shall bear themselves with good grace, to advance the cause of chivalry rather than the base spirit of victory.
  2. Each combatant shall comport themselves bearing mutual responsibility for themselves and for their opponent. The safety of your opponent is your responsibility.
  3. All combatants shall hold themselves in their respective quarters, ready for combat.
  4. As the name of the challenger is read by one of the Deputy heralds, they should advance to Charlemagne's Tree of Shields and smartly sound one to indicate the type of challenge they desire. This done, they should advance to the Companion they would challenge and offer persuasive words to both the Companion and to the Gallery.
  5. The shield purpur shall indicate single combat, one against the other, with a companion of the attacker's choice. Weapons may be of a matched type or of different types, according to the wishes of the challenger.
  6. The shield argent shall indicate single combats at the barrier.
  7. Combats over the barrier will not allow strikes below the waist, and there will be no strikes with excessive force.
  8. The Companions have provided matched Mass weapons for those who wish to use them in the barrier fights. It was a common practice in the days of our ancestors for tenans to offer arms and armour to those challengers who required them.
  9. The shield azure is for single combats bearing 'counted blows,' tallied by the Knight of Honor and by each combatant, in the number of blows thrown to one, three, five, or seven.
    Note: Fights with counted blows were common during the times of our ancestors, so we encourage the attackers to try them today.
  10. The shield sable will indicate group encounters, equal numbers, with the attacker serving as Captain for his side and the chosen Companion as Captain for the other. Each captain may choose his own knights.
  11. In the group combats, there will be no striking from behind and only single-handed swords are allowed. "Killing" from behind is expressly forbidden as this is a cowardly act hardly appropriate for combatants such as you.
  12. There shall be no thrusts to the face, as this was not generally practiced in tournaments.

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