Baronial A&S Championship at 12th Night!

It is time for the Debatable Lands to find their next Arts and Sciences Champion! I will be holding a competition at Debatable Lands Twelfth Night on January 27 to find this good gentle to serve as champion for Baronessa Violeta and Praetoria Prima. Documentation is not required but appreciated. If you do not plan on attending but would like to enter, please let me know so we can arrange transport and display of your work.

The theme of the championship will be “Pastoral Life – The Beauty in Simplicity”. I encourage you to submit your works that celebrate that which would be made in the home of the average medieval person; the mundane works which go unnoticed but demonstrate the timeless accessibility of crafting. Baronessa Violeta and Praetoria Prima will use these entries to award the title and role of their Arts and Sciences Champion for the coming year.

There will additionally be an A&S Display for those who would like to showcase their works-in-progress and ongoing research but do not wish to compete! All are encouraged to participate so that we may show off the widespread and varied talents of our barony.

Please direct any questions to me via email at gabbie.kaplan at or other methods of contact. I look forward to seeing all that our barony has to offer!

Sincerely, Lady Elinor Walden, A&S Champion Second

A&S Night This Thursday!

It’s time again for an A&S Night! We’ll be gathering at Elinor Walden’s home in Stanton Heights this Thursday, December 28, from 6pm to 10pm. Bring your projects, your curiosity, your competition pieces for the upcoming year. Last month, we had sewing, scribal, fiber arts, and brewing, so feel free to bring whatever you’re working on! The address is 5509 Celadine St, Pittsburgh PA 15201 and will lead you to park behind the house; you’ll enter through the fence gate marked with 5509. The gathering is drop-in, drop-out as your schedule allows, so no worries if you show up after 6 or need to leave before 10.

Contact Elinor at [gabbie.kaplan at] if you have specific needs for tools or space so she can best accommodate you. For those of us with pet allergies, please note that a friendly dog and two cats live at the home.

A successful event takes the work of many!

Investiture went well, thanks to the help of so very many people. I’ll try for a full list, but if I’ve missed you please remind me- it’s my faulty memory not the value of your contributions.

Arianna, Sasson and Alan for painting masks as a fundraiser, and Arianna for several events worth of mask making for everyone.
Sideboard Elss, Elsa, Blanche and Alastair.
Bar- Muirgheal, Jean Philippe, Alaric, Caz, and Hal, with donations from the above plus the Baroness of St Swithins Bog.
Elle, T’svee’a, Michi, and members of the Sky Guard for royalty support and retaining.
Jorundr, Don Robert, Master William and Sir Maghnus, the Debatable Choir and iGenisii for entertainment.
Alaric, Rachel, Dorothea, Keirin, Willow, Pavel, Arianna for live music for dancing.
Gwen for coordinating and calling all the dancing, and teaching in advance.
Cadence and Byron for gaming.
Set up, take down, and decorations- Arianna, Robert pour Maintenant, Turlough, Fine, Don Robert, Barbara, Salvadore, Alaric, Rachel, Cadence, Elle, Michi.

Last but not least, thank you Praetoria Prima and Baronessa Violeta for doing us the honor of letting us autocrat your investiture, and Jorundr for mentoring us on our first event.

Ceindrech and Dorothea

Lost and Found- Ceindrech has two wooden bowls, a mask, and a black hexagonal game piece- pictures on FB and Discord.

New Landed Baronage for the Barony-Marche of the Debatable Lands

Greetings Most Beloved Populace,

I would like to Introduce to You and Officially Congratulate and Welcome our New Excellencies; Baronessa Violeta de Valencia and Praetoria Aurelia Argentia Prima; Ninth in the line of succession to the Baronial Seat.

Their Excellencies, Baronessa Violeta de Valencia and Praetoria Aurelia Argentia Prima

Their Excellencies have been participating with the Society for many years having tried their hands at vending, fencing, bardic, scribal, moneying, brewing, archery, and teaching of all these arts.

Their Excellencies are committed to serving with joy and working to continue Our efforts to make the Barony-Marche a community that welcomes Diversity, Equity, Inclusion, and Belonging.

Baronessa Violeta de Valencia and Praetoria Aurelia Argentia Prima at Their Investiture
December 16, 2023

In the coming year, please make an effort to get to know Our New Landed Baronage; seek out Their company and bring your joys and concerns to Them as They are Our voice to The Crown and Our advocates to The Society.

In Service,

Brehyres Muirgheal inghean Dubhghaill, O.P.
Seneschal of the Barony-Marche of the Debatable Lands

Salve accolens, from the new Baronage!

Dearest neighbors,

Yesterday’s Investiture was absolutely amazing. Even though we didn’t get to partake in all the festivities, we’re so happy that you enjoyed yourselves and had so much fun. We felt strongly about it not being a day just for us, but for the whole Barony to come together and celebrate the wonderful years we had under Brandubh and Hilda, and to look forward to the years to come.

The list of people who contributed to the event yesterday is tremendous, and we feel so blessed that so many people stepped up to help make the day special.

But first and foremost, we want to thank Their Majesties Gareth and Juliana for their kind and gracious presence. We are so honored that you were the ones to invest us in this office.

And once again I want to thank Brandubh and Hilda for their years of heartfelt service, and for setting the bar so very high for us as we step into the role of the Baronage. We aspire to the show the same levels of love and care you showed the Barony during your tenure. Though the stars may not shine as bright as the sun, they strive to do their best every night, and so too shall we.

And with Barony like this, how can we not shine? I’d love to put a period-appropriate quote here, maybe something by Seneca, but the best quote I can think of right now is one from Helen Keller: “The best and most beautiful things in the world cannot be seen or even touched — they must be felt with the heart.” Yesterday was heart-felt, and it was beautiful.

So here is a very long list of the wonderful people who made it so:

Dorothea Stark Schutz and Ceindrech verch Elidir, the event autocrats.

Elss Augsburg, who ran the kitchen, and her staff: Alastar Scott MacCrummin, Blanche, and Elsa Taliard.

Luceta DiCosimo for the Barony themed gingerbread cookies.

Gwendolyn the Graceful for leading the dancing, as well as the talented folks who provided live music: Alaric MacConnal, Arianna of Wynthrope, Willow, and Kieran MacRae.

Jorundr hinn Rotinn, Robert MacEwin of Thornhill, Kieran MacRae, and William Colbert, for their gladiatorial battles to entertain the populace. As well as the Debatable Choir, and i Genesii (The Greatest Commedia del’Arte Troupe in the Known World), for their wonderful performances.

Cadence Mayberry for arranging for the period gaming, and Byron of Haverford for creating betting tokens.

Elle (Elinor Walden) and Kate (Catherine O’Herlihy), our wonderful Head Retainers, and the volunteer retaining staff and guards: Cerva, Michiharu, Thomasyn, Reinhard, Isabel, Yacob, Kit, Faye, Agnella, Etienne, Cassiano, Godzimir, Sebastian, Niall, Jiro, and Dagon.

Tsveea for my beautiful gown, and Nicola Beese for helping make sure the show could go on until we were able to get me into said gown. Also Ishiyama Gen’tarou Yori’ie for his timely donation of award favors.

Finally, congratulations to the first recipients of the first new comet awards: Etienne Renault and Emrys Eustace recipients of the Amber Comet, Bran Riddl recipient of the Hematite Comet, and Kara Ivarsdottir recipient of the Jade Comet.

This list feels too short, and I’m sure I’ve missed people. Any error or omission should be corrected, so please let us know if any are needed.

A Final Word from Hilda & Brandubh

Hello Debatable Lands & Neighbors! Salve Accolens!

We’ve pre-scheduled this blog post, so as you read this, your new Baronage Praetoria Prima and Baronessa Violeta have just stepped into their new roles. VIVANT! What a great thing to celebrate! We leave you in excellent hands!

Thank you to Their Majesties, Gareth & Juliana, for your presence, wisdom, and leadership. Thank you to THL Ceindrech, Lady Dorothea, THL Elss and all the Investiture event staff.

As our time as your Baron and Baroness comes to a close, we find ourselves overwhelmed with gratitude, appreciation and love for you all. Our Barony is filled with the most vibrant and engaged communities, the most interested and interesting people, the most dedicated and generous officers, artisans, martial practitioners, and service folks. We comfort each other in times of sorrow, and we celebrate together in times of joy. We are filled with camaraderie, passion and delight for our areas of interest, and are fully welcoming to all who would join us in that same spirit. We are the Debatable Lands!

We tried to compile a list of everyone who’s served as officers, position-holders, champions, those who have served us in our office, and everyone who has contributed to the Barony (both in-Barony and neighbors) during our time but we find ourselves not up to the task, as there are literally hundreds. Please know: we know your names, and what you’ve contributed. We truly appreciate your time, skills, and emotional energy. We see you, and we know what it is you’ve given.

That said, a few special call-outs. Any omission here is our own weakness of memory and no commentary on your contribution. In no particular order: Baroness Muirgheal (Seneschal, event steward, baronial auntie, and so much more), Dame Olyf (seneschal, event steward, cook, sygnet, MOL), Master Alaric (Seneschal, chamberlain, being everywhere all the time), THLady Rachel (7 years our sygnet), Lady Ashling (Largess Coordinator), Lady Tierrany (Largess Coordinator and inspiration for Hilda especially), THLady Ceindrech (deputy seneschal, event steward and fixer of all things); our Heralds serving as our voice – Laerfathir Jorundr (and more), Master Kieran , Lady Jehannette, Master William, Lord Ronan, Brehyres Gwendolyn; and also Gwen for all the artistic contributions (songs, scrolls), Mistress Ts’vee’a (for your wisdom and deep, fierce friendship, plus clothes, mantle project), Hrefna Fruthikona (investiture garb, cloaks, and more), Mistress Arianna (Choir for our courts, largess, scribe, clothing, landgrab and more), THLord Owen (embellishing our garb and serving as our head retainer), Shonagons Ishiyama and Hara (clothes, sewing gild, woodworkers guild, banners, largesse, more), THLady Gesa (captain of horse, creating our equestrian program, largess), Jasmine (youth marshal and more), Lady Elinor (head retainer, mantles, more), and all our retainers, Lady Forveleth, Kit, Jay, Lady Dorothea, Thomasin, Lady Fine, Lord Turlough, and more (oh gosh memory fails! There’s more… We had fun with you all!); Master Emrys (Broom) (Pennsic Camp Reeve, friend, confidant); Camp Staff: Mistress Renata Rouge, THLady Margery Kent of York, Master Antonio, and all of our wonderful campmates; Lady Liz and Mandy for your song, THL Silence, Sir Guillaume (martial advisor – your insights were deep and appreciated), Don Robert MacEwin of Thornhill (for our fight song, Marce Baroniae), Lord Niall (aetherial herald and archery), Lord Reinhard (inspiring the motto and more), THLord Godzimir (archery). THL Sumayya, Lord Angus, Maestra Luceta, Mistress Irene, Master Illadore, THL Elss, THL Rufina. Our predecessors, Baronial cousins across the Kingdom, and Kings and Queens during our tenure. Event stewards and event staff, especially the cooks and chatelaines. All our scribes, wordsmiths and bards – you make our world beautiful. To all those that we’ve lost, especially Lord Ronan and Master Remus – we miss you.

And most of all, to our very, very patient children, Otto and Carl: thank you.

Today we leave our positions as your Baron and Baroness. But Debatable Lands, we are still yours. We hope you’ve enjoyed our tenure. It has been a true honor serving you all. Thank you.

In Levitate et Caritate, and Cheers!

Brandubh and Hilda

Some Baronial Regalia You May See Today

Hello Debatable Lands! Salve Accolens!

What a beautiful day to celebrate the Investiture of our Heirs as your new Baronage, Prima & Violeta! We leave the Baronial thrones in caring and competent hands, and we have every confidence they will serve you all with as much affection and levity and care as we and all our predecessors did! VIVANT!

Since the office is turning over, of course we have done an inventory of the office’s items (as is required in our policies – and we do follow the rules here in the Debatable Lands!), and we’d like to share a few things that you may just see today that are of historical interest. Enjoy!

In Levitate et Caritate, and Cheers!
(and for one last time) Baron Brandubh and Baroness Hilda (dusty in here…)

Click on each image to see the whole thing.

Ancient Banners

“New” Banners

The Barony’s Coronets

The Thrones

Made by the hands of Graedwyn mab Tiernon in the early 2000s

The Baronial Mantles

Commissioned, conceptualized and patroned by Hilda & Brandubh, presented in 2023, project managed by Hrefna inn heppna, these mantles represent ~1400 hours of work by our wonderful and generous artisans. They represent the love, generosity, and dedication of all the people of the Debatable Lands.

The slideshow above shows the whole process from concept to completions. Click on the arrows or swipe to browse through. Pics by Hrefna, Elinor, Ceindrech, and Hilda.

The Coven of the Cloaked Comet
Concept, Overall Design, and Patron: Baroness Hilderun
Project Manager/Embroidery and Applique Design/Embroiderer Extraordinare: Hrefna fruðikona (lapel embroidery)
Patterning and Design Consultants: Mistress T’svee’a and Lady Elinor
Embroiderers: THL Ceindrech and THL Gesa (escarbuncles), Laird Forveleth (collar), Kit and Jay (comet and laurel wreath),
Seamstress: Lady Elinor (with some last minute help from Hrefna, Lord Khalid, Kit, and THL Owen)

Some Fun Stuff

Practice Sunday 12/17

We will once again be holding practice this Sunday at Ace Axe Throwing but will be starting at 11am. Going forward this will be our new start time. Hope to see everyone there.

For the holiday schedule we will be canceling on the eves, the 24th and 31st.


Masquerade and Investiture Corrections and Reminders


First, there is some confusion about the address. Previous announcements had it wrong.

The correct address is North Park Lodge, N Ridge Lane, Gibsonia, 15101. It is off Pierce Mill Rd.

iMaps and Google maps are correct, but Map Quest is wrong.

Second, Troll will close at 2 PM. I inadvertently left that off the schedule.

Lastly, come and have fun!!! Bring your best dress, masks, period coins for betting and games, comfy shoes for lots of dancing, and plenty of room for good food.