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The first day and the Holderness meeting clashed with Pudsey, but that evening I got down to the riverside to join the gang for a few beers.

On Sunday there weren't any punters so we did some combat practice including the boar's snout and set up some action shots for the camera. Kobbi was kindly able to supply me with a scramasax and a pair of turnshoes to call my own.

I enjoyed another opportunity to practice without having to display. There were a couple of passing dog walkers & I looked up from my dinner to find one of my predecessors as chair of the Parish Council regarding me with some curiousity. I do think it is the first time I've seen him look surprised :-)
salvianus: (Default)
Holderness, Roman age Germanic Barbarians.

Very handy for me, allowing me to join in the carousing on Saturday night & still sleep in my own bed. The camp in the Museum gardens, in the shadow of the Multangular tower, was a great laugh. Folk were very generous with advice and kit - was able to loan a pair of shoes (Kobbi's advice was to soak them so they moulded to my feet, but, mindful of our planned walking holiday I wimped out & wore walking socks later disguised with checked cloth) and a leather belt from Rick to replace my plaited one.

Many of the Holderness lads really went to town adapting their kit for the early period look of the Roman legionaries of Legio XX and IX, with clubs, bare chests & woad. The dateline of the festival was nominally the acclamation of Constantine in 306A.D., but as Comitatus were not made welcome by the co-ordinator organiser bloke in charge way things worked out we had Claudian Romans rather than 4th Century ones. The Germanic war cries and barritus were a great hit with the public and were addictive - by the time we saw the gladiatorial bouts on late Sunday, I hooted & cheered automatically for the barbarians. The Gladiators were from the Hungarian Collegium Gladiatorium & really serious - very fit, built & well practised; just their warm up exercises were exhausting to lesser men and they attacked full on & without respite. They got the honours from the whole group. Their gallery at York 2005

Got a lot of helpful tips on using the 2-handed spear from Andy & Magnus. I now badly want one of my own. On Sunday, I finally gave my first hit on an opponent - while he was busy with the bloke on my right, who I presume finished him off. I was too busy buying it immediately myself to see.

Fighting the Roman unit was fantastic. Only a few were used to re-enatment combat & most had unsharpened display gladii (but 'sharp enough') and weak (and very pretty) shields, so the rules were quite restrictive - more like theatrical combat, pushing rather than thrusting & hitting with flats only. Despite being scripted to take a dive in the third round, I have to say we did our best to act them out of the arena with chanting & taunting that built up such an atmosphere it was difficult to hold back - I saw a few shield edges lying around afterwards, at least one Gallic helmet fell apart & another lost it's crest. Oops.

We certainly lived up to the barbarian role.

Did I mention not to mention the belly dancers?
salvianus: (Default)
Member of the Public, Viking.

Having made contact with Regia Anglorum , the organisation in charge of the Jorvik festival, via the national I had been efficiently handed on to the local group (Holderness) contact, Alan. I went along to a handy Holderness event to meet the group in the flesh and arranged to attend an event run by another local group, Comitatus.

It was useful to watch an event knowing I'd soon be taking part, which helped me to know what I was doing later. The performance aspect of the display was very important - we felt entertained as well as edified. We had a lark and Helen's mate Kerry made a great little video of the competitive combat.


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February 2011



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