Kingdom Champion and the Honor of the Lions Sword
Ceremonial of the Kingdom of An Tir
Version: 12th Night, LII (2017)
The populace being assembled, at the Crown's command, the herald shall call the fighters forward
(traditionally there has been no processional for Champion Tournament).
Let all combatants who wish to compete for the title of Champion of An Tir present themselves before their Majesties.
When they have assembled:
Today you enter the lists to vie for the honor of Champion of An Tir.
The person who carries this title is sworn in fealty to the Crown of An Tir,
that whenever Their Majesties marshal Their forces,
there shall Their Champion be to battle at Their side,
and to defend The Crown and The Kingdom against all who would take up arms against An Tir.
This is a grave responsibility, not to be undertaken lightly,
for even as the Champion takes their place in Court and at Their Majesties' side,
they must know that by their deeds they show forth the honor and chivalry of that court
and this Kingdom to all the world.
And know, too, that should Their Majesties be prevented from completing Their reign,
it is the Champion of An Tir who must bear the burden of ruling
until a true successor to the Throne is chosen.
So, understanding the position for which you battle,
harken now to the words of the Crown.
If the Crown wishes to deliver a personal or inspirational message, They may do so at this time.
Then the herald shall lead the combatants in the oath:
Do each of you now swear that should you be victorious this day
you will fulfill the obligations of the Champion of An Tir,
and that you will abide by the laws of this Kingdom,
and that you will bear yourself now and in the future
with the honor and chivalry, virtue and loyalty
which must mark the Champion of An Tir?
I so swear.
Make yourselves ready for the combat.
Henceforth, let none but the chivalrous combatants
and those with official business pertaining to the combat
come within these precincts,
until the combat is concluded.
The First Round
When it is time for the first round to begin the herald shall say:
People of An Tir! Attend now the List for the Champion of An Tir.
Heralds to the fields! Marshals to the fields! Let the Lists begin!
The heralds shall proclaim the pairings for the first round.
Return of the Regalia
At their Majesties command, the herald shall call forth the old Champion:
, Champion of An Tir, come before Their Majesties.
, you have nobly served An Tir as Champion. We release you from your duties with Our deepest thanks for your loyal service to Our Realm.
Your Majesty, I return into Your keeping the Sword of State of An Tir and these tokens of the Champion of An Tir.
The Lions Sword
Receiving the regalia, the Crown shall say:
We thank wish to honor you for your service to Our Kingdom.
Know all people by these presents that ,
having served faithfully and chivalrously as Champion of the Kingdom of An Tir,
is hereby given the Honor of the Lion's Sword.
In acknowledgement whereof We do here set Our hand and seal
this day of , Anno Societatis , being Gregorian.
, [King] of An Tir , [Queen] of An Tir
The Crown shall present the Champion with the token of the Honor.
Their Majesties may invite outgoing Champion to witness investiture.
The herald shall call the victor forward.
HERALD: , you have gained victory this day. Come forward.
But, if no change is taking place the Champion shall remain kneeling.
, by your valor and skill you have won the title Champion of An Tir. Will you take the Champion's Oath?
Do you swear to faithfully discharge your duties as Champion of An Tir,
to abide by the laws of the realm,
and to loyally serve the Crown of An Tir
so long as you remain Champion?
I so swear.
Do you swear that and are your True Sovereigns and Liege [Lord and Lady]?
I so swear.
Do you swear fealty to and , [King and Queen] of An Tir,
that whenever They marshal the forces of the Kingdom,
there shall you be to defend The Crown and Kingdom of An Tir?
I so swear.
And we for our part do swear fealty to this Our Champion
to protect and defend them and their household to best of our ability
so long as we remain Sovereigns of An Tir.
So say we , King of An Tir.
And so say we Queen of An Tir.
Then lay your sword before His Majesty,
that They might know that you are Their true Champion.
The King shall take up the sword, saying:
We accept your homage, and return to you your sword,
granting you the rights due the true Champion of An Tir,
among these a place at Our court, and the right to fight by Our side.
So say We, , King of An Tir.
The Queen shall place the Cloak around the Champion's shoulders, and giving him the gauntlets and other tokens, saying:
Wear this cloak and receive these tokens of your estate.
Then giving him the Sword of State, the King says:
We give this Sword of An Tir into your keeping,
and charge you to deliver it to Us
at such time as the Kingdom has need and We shall require it.
Take now your place in Our court.
As the Champion takes his place, the herald will exhort the cheers for new and outgoing Champions.
At this point the Crown may wish to call forth the other finalist and recognize their skill and valor (perhaps with tokens),
but even if They do not, the herald will exhort the cheers of the people for the finalist.
Remind the Majesties about the Charge to the fighters.
Remind Them also about the token for the Lion's Sword. There is no standard token for this Honor, so Them must arrange for one, in advance.
Find out if the Crown will have tokens for the finalist (and their inspiration).
Find out if the Crown will read the formal charge to the fighters, or have the herald do this.
How long a break will there be (if any), between the invocation and the lists?
Remind the new Champion to wear their PERSONAL sword into court, NOT the Sword of State.