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Palimpsest Rules Letter dated 2011-05-29

To the College of Arms and any others unto whom these letters shall come, does Marie de Blois, Palimpsest, send warm greetings.

This is the second draft of the revised Rules for Submissions. A PDF version of the full draft is available at:

The draft rules are posted both in OSCAR and as a downloadable file for two reasons. First, the rules for submissions are longer than the current rules. This is partly because we feel that more explanations and examples make the rules easier to apply - this includes adding in some discussion of the underlying theories which drive the rules. It is also partly because we've separated out the personal names rules and the non-personal names rules for greater clarity. Second, we hope that the posting of the entire text in a single location, instead of cut up between different numbered items, will make it easier for people to review and edit.

We've been talking about the rules for over a year and a half, with many people, and are continuing to move closer to a final version. This proposal is not meant to be simply rubber stamped; we are still open to making significant changes. You will notice that there are some significant changes between this version and the previous one. Please treat it as you would any rules proposal: attack it, defend it, suggest different approaches, point out potential implementation issues, etc. While this draft reflects a lot of work by Juliana (now Pelican), I, and several other heralds (thank you!), it is still in need of the sharp eyes and minds of even more heralds.

Like the first draft, this draft attempts to balance truth (period practice) and beauty (simplicity of rules). Both naming and armorial practices varied widely throughout the times and places within the SCA; on the one hand, our principles push us to allow all those period practices and on the other hand we want to keep the rules to a set of practices that can be easily and simply described and are complete. In trying to find a path between these two, we have taken the approach that the SCA is perhaps best considered as its own, separate heraldic jurisdiction, which gives us a chance to have a "core" set of rules based on period practice without requiring us to pick a single time and place to be the entirety of our rules or trying to include every possible period practice.

Additionally, this draft of the rules attempts to go back to some first principles and basic organizational principles. This includes references like the Governing Documents and information about period heraldic practice, but also asking questions like "does this make any sense?" and "what are the problems we have in explaining these rules to other people?" and "why is this here?". You'll notice that a number of sections have moved around from the first draft, the logic of several sections has been considerably revised, there are some layout and formatting changes to improve brain-numbing text blocks, and there are even more examples in most places.

The draft rules are split into four sections: general principles, personal names, non-personal names, and armory. This creates some repetition, but seemed to us to reflect the typical purpose people use the rules for - creating a specific type of submission.

Comments are due July 31, 2011; comments may be posted in OSCAR or mailed to We encourage line readings that amount to edits to be sent directly to the e-mail address. If you'd like an RTF version, write to us directly.

This item was on the 08-2011 LoAR

1: Personal Names 0 - New Rule Change

OSCAR is unable to find the name, either registered or submitted.

Personal Names

Personal Name Registration

Personal names are names that identify a single human being (as opposed to a group of people, a branch, an order, and the like, which are non-personal names). To be registered, a personal name submission must meet the following standards:

  • Each name phrase (a complete given name or byname) must be demonstrated to be suitable for a specific time and place or otherwise meet the standards set out in Personal Name Section One.
  • The name as a whole must be demonstrated to be grammatically (structurally) correct and meet the standards for lingual and temporal compatibility set out in Personal Name Section Two.
  • The name must be free of conflict, pretense and presumption as set out in Personal Name Sections Three, Four, and Five.
  • The name must not be offensive as set out in Personal Name Section Six.

This item was on the 08-2011 LoAR

2: Personal Names 1 - New Rule Change

OSCAR is unable to find the name, either registered or submitted.

Personal Name Section One: Personal Names: Content (Name Phrase Construction)

A. Definitions: Several terms are used in this section of the rules.

A name phrase consists of a complete given name or byname with associated prepositions, articles and the like. The elements which make up a name phrase may be referred to as name elements. Name elements may be words or pieces of words. A name phrase may consist of a single word or multiple words.

For example, of, the and Dell are all whole word name elements. Some examples of pieces of words which are name elements: Arnulfs and dottir or Ælf and gar. Some examples of name phrases: Smith, comprised simply of a single word, de la Torre, comprised of de, la, and Torre.

There are many types of name phrases; in personal names, these fall into two types:

1. Given Name: A given name is the main personal name, often given at birth or in some kind of naming ceremony. In English (and in most European languages), the given name is the first name element. All personal name submissions are required to have a given name.

In some languages, a person may have two given names. For example, there are examples of people with two given names in late period English and Spanish. Other languages, such as Gaelic and Arabic, seem to have never used two given names before 1600. A discussion of name formation patterns, including multiple given names, is found in Appendix A.

2. Byname: A byname is a part of the name other than a personal name. It may identify someone as the child of individual, or as being born in some place, describe some distinctive physical or personality feature, or place someone as a member of a family (as an inherited surname). A discussion of types of bynames found in period Europe is found in Appendix B. Note that not all types of bynames are found in all languages (see Appendix B for details).

B. Standards for Name Phrases: A registerable name phrase must meet the following standards:

1. Single Time and Place: A registerable name phrase must follow the rules of grammar and structure for a single time and place. It may not mix languages unless that mixing of languages within a name phrase is documented as a period practice.

For example, the name phrase de London is typical of medieval English documentary practice. Therefore, it is a registerable name phrase. However, von Saxony, which mixes the German von with the English version of the German place name, is not. It must be made completely German, as von Sachsen, or completely English, as of Saxony.

2. Sources of Name Phrases: We allow registerable name phrases to be created in a variety of ways. The following types of name phrases may be registered:

a. Attested Name Phrases: Name phrases may be attested to period as a complete name phrase (i.e., found in a period document). A single example of an attested name phrase clearly dated to period is sufficient to demonstrate its use. Minor spelling variants are allowed when those spelling variants are demonstrated to be compatible with the spelling conventions of the time and place of the attested name.

For example, in Renaissance English, the letters i and y are frequently interchanged. Therefore, a name attested as Annis could also be spelled Annys. However, the same spelling change does not occur in all locations in Italian. Therefore, a name attested as Iacopo could not be spelled Yacopo without further evidence.

b. Constructed Name Phrases: Name phrases may be constructed from attested period name elements. To do this, documentation must be provided to demonstrate that they follow a period pattern. We generally require at least two or three examples to consider something a pattern, as sometimes a single name phrase can create the appearance of a pattern that does not actually exist. Additionally, the examples should closely match the desired name phrase.

For example, taken alone, the English given name Rose appears to originate from the name of the flower; however, research suggests that it does not. Therefore, it cannot be used to justify names like Lily. More examples of patterns and non-patterns are listed below.

All of the elements and patterns for a constructed name phrase must come from a single time and place. Some examples of constructed names are:

1. Diminutives Created from Given Names: In many languages, diminutive forms can be made from existing given names, often by adding endings or removing part of the name (and even both).

For example, in Italian, diminutives are regularly created by adding -ino after dropping the final -o from an already existing given name. The diminutive Urbanino can be created from the attested given name Urbano.

2. Created Dithemic Given Names: In several Germanic languages, including Old English, given names are frequently composed of two pieces, a protheme (first part) and a deuterotheme (second part). New names can be constructed from attested prothemes and deuterothemes. A new name cannot be created by combining other parts of the names or by combining elements other than a single protheme and a single deuterotheme.

For example, the attested Old English name Ælfgar has the protheme Ælf- and the deuterotheme -gar and the attested Old English name Eadmund has the protheme Ead- and the deuterotheme -mund. Therefore one could combine the protheme Ælf- and the deuterotheme -mund to make the given name Ælfmund. However, Garmund or Ælfead are not documentable through this pattern, nor is Ælfgarmund, as these do not combine a single protheme with a single deuterotheme.

3. Bynames Created from Given Name Elements: In many languages, bynames of relationship can be formed from attested given names.

For example, in Old Norse, the standard patronymic byname for men consists of the possessive form of the father's name joined to the word `son', so Sveinsson is the son of Sveinn. The attested Old Norse given name Bjartmarr could be used in this construction to create Bjartmarsson, even if this particular patronymic was not attested in period sources. However, even though Gaelic also has patronymic bynames formed from the possessive form of the father's name, they are not joined to the word `son' but are prefaced with `mac'. Thus, the attested Gaelic name Donnchadh could be used in this construction to create mac Donnchaidh; it could not be used to create Donnchadhson or mac Sveinn.

4. New Placenames Created from Attested Elements and Patterns: New placenames can be created by combining attested elements.

For example, the attested English place names Oxford, Swinford and Hartford indicate a pattern of kinds of animals with -ford. Therefore, this pattern would support a similar name like Sheepford. This pattern would not, however, support inventing Bookford or Towerford, since neither books nor towers are animals.

For example, there is a pattern of adding family names to existing placenames in English. Following this pattern, the attested family name Peverel can be added to the attested placename Bercroft to create the compound placename Bercroft Peverel.

5. Other Created Names: Other name phrases similar in type to the patterns above can be constructed if the pattern and the elements can be dated to a single time and place. Name phrases will not be allowed that are created by using patterns from one time and place with elements from another time and place. Name phrases that do not follow an attested period practice will not be allowed.

c. Lingua Anglica Allowance: We allow the registration of translations of attested and constructed descriptive and locative bynames into standard modern English. We call this the lingua anglica rule. We allow this because the meanings of these bynames would have been clear to the speakers of these languages, but may be unclear to modern speakers. The translation of descriptive bynames must be a literal and plausible translation. Under lingua anglica, locative bynames use standard modern English forms rather than period spellings of the placenames. Under no circumstances will translations of the meanings of given names or placenames be registerable under this rule.

For example, the Norse byname inn rauði may be translated as the Red. It may not be translated as the bloody, the scarlet, or the like, as these are not literal translations.

For example, the Spanish byname de Castilla may be translated as of Castile. The Arabic byname al-Dimashqi may be translated as of Damascus or the Damascene. However, while Cairo is derived from a word which means "the victorious", it's lingua anglica form is of Cairo, not of The Victorious, as "The Victorious" is a translation of the meaning. Additionally, while al-Qahira is the Egyptian spelling of the city, of al-Qahira is not registerable as the lingua anglica form, as is not the standard modern English form either.

d. Borrowed Names: Name phrases may be borrowed from secular literature, the Bible, or from the names of saints. Name phrases may be constructed from name elements borrowed these same types of literature. In either case, the name phrase must be demonstrated to meet the following requirements.

1. Linguistically Appropriate Form: The name phrase must be shown to be a form by which the character or person was known in that time and place. Generally this means finding it in the literature of that time (so a Renaissance Italian Bible, or an English publication of an Arthurian romance). In the case of a saint, evidence for their veneration through the naming of churches is generally allowed. Only the form of the name used in that culture is allowed under this allowance.

For example, the Arthurian character Lancelot is found in Italian as Lancilotto. Therefore, Lancilotto, not Lancelot, is the form allowed in Italian context. Similarly, the saint known in her lifetime as Æthelthryth was venerated by late period English people as Audrey. So Audrey is the form allowed in late period English context.

2. Pattern of Borrowing Names: The culture must be shown to have a pattern of using name phrases from literature. Moreover, a pattern of the use of names of that sort of character from that source or kind of source must be demonstrated. Demonstrating a pattern requires at least two independent examples of normal people using such name phrases in the target time and place. In general, the examples need to be from the same sort of source (saint's names, biblical names, Arthurian names, and the like).

The type of name phrase must match. Evidence of given names from a literary source does not demonstrate the use of bynames from that source. The demonstrated pattern must also address the type of character. The use of the given names of major characters does not demonstrate the use of the given names of minor characters. So, the pattern of using the given names of major Arthurian characters in medieval England would justify the name Bedivere even if it were not attested. It would not justify a name from the Bible or the name of a minor character like Gwinas, who is only mentioned once. As there is no similar pattern of borrowing in Gaelic, the Gaelic forms of Arthurian characters cannot be registered under this allowance.

Certain kinds of borrowed names were rarely used. These will only be allowed if a pattern explicitly includes the use of name phrases of that type. They include:

  • allegorical names (like Everyman)
  • the names of characters mentioned only briefly in stories
  • names from stories that take place in legendary time
  • the names of superhuman characters (including gods and monsters, but also characters that interact with gods or engage in superhuman act of prowess)
  • the names of characters from the life stories of saints (like the parents and siblings of saints)
  • and the names of literary places.

e. Legal Name Allowance: Name phrases from the submitter's legal names may be used. To do this, the submitter must demonstrate the name phrase on a legal document, such as a birth certificate, driver's license, or the like. Only the full name and the nature of the document must be visible; identification numbers and the like may be obscured. Official religious documents are considered evidence for religious names (Hebrew names, confirmation names), which are also allowed under this allowance. In some cases, providing a photocopy of the document may not be possible; in such cases, a herald or heralds may attest in writing that they have seen the document and this can be sufficient documentation. The attestation should include: the full name exactly as provided on the document, the type of document that was provided, the herald(s) who saw the document, and the reason why photocopying was not possible.

The name phrase must be used in precisely the way that it is spelled on the legal document. The entire name phrase must be used and it must be used as an entire name phrase. Thus, nicknames that do not appear on legal documents cannot be registered.

For example, the legal name Ruby justifies Ruby, but not Rubie or Rube. The legal name Smith justifies Smith, but not the Smith. This is true even though one can find occupational bynames in English both with and without articles. The legal name von Volvorth justifies von Volvorth, not Volvorth or de Volvorth, though one can find examples of bynames formed from German placenames using those forms.

Name phrases documented in this way are categorized as given names and bynames based on type (surnames are a type of byname). They may be used in any way that a given name or byname of that type may be used. Modern "middle names" are a special case. Some people in the modern world have middle names derived from given names. Others have middle names derived from surnames, either through shifts in naming practice, or through marriage. Therefore, middle names are registerable based on the type of name they are. Middle names which originated as surnames but are modernly used as given names may be used as given names.

For example, someone whose legal middle name is Elizabeth may use it as a given name, because Elizabeth is a given name by type. However, someone whose middle name is MacGregor may not use it as a given name, because it is a surname by type. The name Madison, while it originated as a surname, is modernly used as a given name. Therefore, someone whose legal middle name is Madison may use it as a given name through the legal name allowance.

This rule can allow a name phrase which is not attested in period, but the name as a whole must still meet the other requirements for names. This includes issues with overall construction, conflict, presumption, pretense, and offense.

For example, Earl is a modern given name, but it is also a title of rank within the SCA. Therefore, we would not register it, even if documented as the submitter's legal given name.

f. Branch Name Allowance: Name phrases may be created from the registered forms of SCA branches. Only the exact registered form of the branch name may be used, and they are registered in the lingua anglica form, `of Branchname'. Translated forms will not be registered under this allowance, even if it matches the intended origin of the submission or of the branch.

For example, this would allow the bynames of the East or of Fontaine dans Sable, as these are the expected lingua anglica forms. However, this would not allow von Osten as a German translation of "of the East", even if the given name was German. It would also not allow de la Fontaine dans Sable as a fully French version of "of Fontaine dans Sable", even though the branch name is French.

g. The Grandfather Clause: Name phrases that are registered to an individual may be used in a new submission by that individual, even if they are no longer allowed under the rules. Only the exact, actual name phrase from the registered form may be used, not variants, patterns, etc. The use of the grandfather clause does not allow the submitter to evade new style problems (as discussed in Section Two below). It only allows the submitter a pass on style problems that already exist with the registered name.

A name phrase from a registered name of an individual may also be registered by a close legal relative (parent, spouse, child, sibling). To do this, the submitter must demonstrate the relationship through legal documents or through attestation of relationship from the individual whose name is already registered. Documentation under the grandfather clause does not exempt a name or name phrase from conflict, presumption, pretense, or offense rules, unless that rules violation is itself grandfathered.

This item was on the 08-2011 LoAR

3: Personal Names 2 - New Rule Change

OSCAR is unable to find the name, either registered or submitted.

Personal Name Section Two: Personal Names: Style (Assembling Name Phrases into Names)

A. Definitions: A name phrase is a complete given name or byname with associated prepositions, articles and the like. It is defined more thoroughly in Section One above, which deals with the construction of name phrases). A naming pool refers to the group of name phrases that are in use in a particular time and place. We organize these naming pools into regional naming groups, each of which includes a group of naming pools that are geographically linked. These regional naming groups are used to determine whether two name phrases can be combined in a registerable name. The list of established regional groups is listed in Appendix C.

B. Name Phrase Requirements: A registerable personal name must be made up of at least two name phrases: a given name and at least one additional name phrase which we call a byname. In some cases, two given names with no other byname may be documented and registered. While it is easy to document individuals who are identified only with a single given name, we do not allow the registration of single element personal names. Individuals may use those names, but may not register them.

The position of each name phrase name within a name must be documented. The order must be shown to be appropriate for that type of name phrase in its language and cultural tradition. Some patterns for name grammar in important European languages can be found in Appendix A. Any pattern found there does not need further documentation; a reference to Appendix A will be sufficient. Other patterns require documentation.

For example, there is evidence for names in Spanish with two bynames in certain patterns. One pattern is a patronymic byname followed by a placename, as in Ruy Diaz de Bivar. That would justify Juan Perez de Madrid, but would not support the registration of Juan de Madrid Perez.

Each name phrase must be grammatically correct for its position in a name. In some languages, spelling changes are used to indicate aspects of relationships in bynames. Some languages capitalize bynames of relationship, but consistently use lower case for descriptive bynames.

For example, because of the way Gaelic grammar works, the byname mac Fearchair 'son of Fearchar' must be changed to mhic Fhearchair when it occurs after another byname of the form mac X (i.e., when your father was the son of Fearchar). So, the son of Donnchadh mac Fearchair would be Fionn mac Donnchaidh mhic Fhearchair. For example, Norse descriptive bynames are consistently in lower case. So, Halla who knits would be Halla knýtir, not Halla Knýtir.

C. Name Requirements: A name submission must be consistent with a single time and place according to the standards laid out in this section. The position of each name phrase within a name must follow a pattern for a particular time and place. In addition, the name as a whole must follow a period pattern for personal names. Any name must follow the pattern described in one of the two sections below.

1. Culturally Uniform Names: A culturally uniform name matches a pattern of the grammar of names for a single time and place, such as fourteenth century England. This requires that the overall pattern be documented to a particular time and place, in addition to each name phrase meeting the standards set out in Personal Names Section One and Section B above. Appendix A gives some patterns for medieval and Renaissance names. Names matching those patterns do not need further documentation for the grammar. Other patterns require further documentation.

2. Culturally Mixed Names: Names that mix name phrases from different times and/or places are allowed if the name meets one of the following conditions.

a. The name mixes name phrases found in a single regional naming group as listed in Appendix C that are dated to within 500 years of one another.

b. The name mixes name phrases from two regional naming groups that are listed in Appendix C as combinable and those name phrases are dated to within 300 years of one another.

Names that combine more than two regional naming groups or that combine two regional naming groups that are not listed as combinable will not be allowed under this rule (though they may be registered under the allowances in Sections c and d below).

c. The name mixes name phrases from naming pools that can be documented as having been used together in the personal names of real people; for such combinations, the name phrases must be within 300 years of one another.

d. A name which includes name phrases documented under the legal name allowance, the grandfather clause, or the branch name allowance follows special rules. These name phrases are treated as neutral in language and time. Such name phrases may be combined with name phrases from a single regional naming group dated to within 500 years of one another. They may not be combined with name phrases from two or more regional naming groups. If a name phrase may also be documented as either an attested or constructed name, it may be treated in whichever way is more favorable for registration.

In addition, if a grandfathered name phrase was found in a registered name that combined languages from two or more regional naming groups, the new submission may combine those same regional naming groups. If this allowance is used, then no new regional naming group may be added.

D. Names Not Recorded in a Latin Alphabet: Names will only be registered in the Latin alphabet, so that both heralds and the populace can easily read them. Submitters are encouraged to use those names in the original alphabet for other purposes. Names and name phrases that would not have been written in a Latin alphabet are treated for purposes of registration as if they are created in the relevant alphabet (Norse, Arabic, Russian, etc.). They are then transcribed for registration into the Latin alphabet following a single orthographic system. Names that mix two orthographic systems for transcription are not allowed because some systems use the same letters to represent different sounds, which creates confusion. This includes the use (or lack) of accents in a name - their usage should be consistent. A list of acceptable transliteration systems for some languages can be found in Appendix D. The use of a transliteration system not listed there must be justified with the submission.

For example, the Arabic given name often transliterated as Amina can be equally well transliterated as Aminah (ending in -ah­ instead of just -a). In combination with the Arabic locative meaning `of Hamdan', which is either al-Hamadaniyya or al-Hamadaniyyah, either Amina al-Hamadaniyya or Aminah al-Hamadaniyyah is registerable. However, neither Aminah al-Hamadaniyya or Amina al-Hamadaniyyah is registerable, as these two mix the transliteration systems.

For example, the Irish Gaelic given name Tomás, when combined with the Irish Gaelic descriptive byname Mór, can be rendered either as Tomas Mor or as Tomás Mór. However, it cannot be rendered as Tomás Mor or Tomas Mór, as these use the accents inconsistently.

E. Obtrusive Modernity: No name will be registered that either in whole or in part is obtrusively modern. Something is said to be obtrusively modern when it makes a modern joke or reference that destroys medieval ambience and drags the average person mentally back to the present day. Obtrusiveness can be either in the written form or when spoken. A period name that has a modern referent will not generally be considered obtrusively modern. Only extreme examples will be returned.

For example, names that have been ruled obtrusively modern and hence returned include Porsche Audi, Artemisian Tank Corps, and Geky Herald (pronounced like "Geeky Herald"). Names like Edmond Fitzgerald, Red Boke Herald, Drew Steele, and Mould de Cheder have been allowed.

This item was on the 08-2011 LoAR

4: Personal Names 3 - New Rule Change

OSCAR is unable to find the name, either registered or submitted.

Personal Name Section Three: Personal Names: Conflict

A. Definitions: Conflict, as it is used in these rules, is a modern concept which derives from the requirement in the Governing Documents that names have sufficient difference to avoid undue confusion. To be registered, a new submission must be clear of conflict with all registered personal names; that it is, it must avoid undue confusion with them. There are two types of confusion which must be avoided: being too close to a registered personal name itself, and claiming to be a close relative of a registered personal name. These are described in these rules as "identity conflict" and "relationship conflict".

For identity conflict, a name submission that is not substantially different both in sound and in appearance from a registered personal name is in conflict with it. A name submission that is substantially different in sound and appearance from a registered personal name is clear of conflict with it. For relationship conflict, a name that makes an unmistakable claim of close relationship to a registered personal name is in conflict with it. This section of the rules sets the standards for how names can be substantially different

B. Individuals Protected from Conflict: A new submission of a personal name must be clear from conflict with all registered personal names. Non-personal names and personal names do not conflict. A name is registered and protected from the moment it is listed as accepted on a published Letter of Acceptances and Returns. As soon as possible, those names will be listed in the Ordinary and Armorial, but they are protected as soon as the Letter of Acceptances and Return is published.

C. Standards for Identity Conflict: To be clear of identity conflict, two names must be substantially different in sound and appearance. Because conflict is a modern concept, we consider matters such as meaning, language, etymological origin, and the like to be irrelevant for conflict. Only sound and appearance are considered for difference. Thus, the Latinized form of a name may be clear of conflict with the vernacular form. While we do not go out of our way to consider variant pronunciations, we do consider important period and modern pronunciations of name elements.

To be substantially different, a pair of names must be different in sound and appearance under the standards laid out below. Names may be different in sound under one standard and appearance under another standard, but they must be both different in sound and different in appearance under a combination of the standards below. Names are compared as complete items, so that Lisa Betta Gonzaga conflicts with Lisabetta Gonzaga, although the elements are different.

1. Changes to Two Syllables: Names are substantially different if there are changes in sound and appearance that affect at least two syllables (including adding, removing, or reordering them). If the changes only affect adjacent letters or sounds, they must affect more than two letters or sounds to be considered under this allowance. Change in spacing is a change in appearance, but is not considered a change in sound. Changes to any part of the name count.

For some examples, each of the following pairs is clear of conflict. Alana Red and Elena Reed are substantially different, as are Anne Jones London and Anne Joan of London; in each two syllables are changed in sound and appearance. Maria Smith is substantially different from Miriam Smith, and Alana Roberts from Elena Roberts, because two syllables have changes to them. Similarly, John de Aston is substantially different from John Asson, because two syllables are changed. Underthecliff and Cliff are substantially different, as are atte Mor and de la Mor; in each case at least two syllables were changed, removed, or added.

2. Substantial Change to One Syllable: Names are substantially different if a single syllable between them (excluding articles and prepositions, like de and the) is changed in sound and appearance as described here. The addition or removal of a syllable makes two names substantially different. Two names are also substantially different if a syllable is substantially changed. This means that the vowel and the consonant (or group of consonants) on one side of the vowel is different between the two names.

For example, Maria Jones and Miriam Jones are substantially different from either Mary Jones or Marie Jones, because those names add a syllable; these pairings are clear of conflict. Mary Jones is not substantially different from Marie Jones. While the most common modern pronunciation of the given names is different, one important late period and modern pronunciation makes both names the same (as MA-ree). Thus they conflict. While we do not go out of our way to consider variant pronunciations, we do consider important period and modern pronunciations of name elements.

For example, Connor MacRobert does not conflict with Conan MacRobert or Conall MacRobert, because the second syllable of the given names is substantially different. Likewise, Colin L'Estrange is clear of Colin Strange, because a syllable of the byname is removed. Colin L'Estrange is not clear of Colin Lestrange, because the change in sound is negligible, and the change in appearance does not substantially change the syllable.

3. Substantial Change of Name Phrase: Two names with a comparable single-syllable name phrase or a name phrase consisting of a single-syllable name element accompanied by articles, prepositions and the like are eligible for this rule. A pair of name phrases are said to be comparable if they both have the same position in the name, such as given name or first byname. Comparable single-syllable name elements are substantially different if a group of adjacent vowels or of adjacent consonants within a word that is not a preposition or article is completely changed, so that it shares no sound or letters in common. When the word has only one vowel or one consonant, changing that letter can be sufficient. Names with substantially different name elements are clear of conflict.

For example, John Smith would not conflict with Sean Smith. Anne Best would not conflict with Anne West. Ellen Lang would not conflict with Ellen Long. James Ed would not conflict with James Lead. Katerine de la Mar would not conflict with Katerine de la Mor. In each case, an adjacent group of vowels or consonants is completely changed in sound and appearance.

For example, Matthew Joan would conflict in sound with Matthew Jones, because the n and nz groups share a sound and letter. Richard Blott would conflict with Richard Lot, because the bl and l group share a sound and letter.

4. Masculine/Feminine Pairs: When a pair of given names are of different gender (one masculine, one feminine), and both are marked with a gendered ending, the change of that gendered ending makes them substantially different. In order for this to apply, neither gender's ending can be simply formed by adding letters to the other gender's ending; they must have distinct endings.

For example, Domenico Perez is significantly different from Domenica Perez because the masculine ends in -o while the feminine ends in -a. While the names are different, Julien Thibault is not clear of Julienne Thibault, as the feminine name adds letters to the masculine rather than altering an existing masculine ending and the sound is not changed.

D. Standards for Relationship Conflict: To be clear of relationship conflict, the submitted name must not unmistakably imply close relationship with a protected person. This includes, but is not limited to, a claim to be the parent, child, or spouse of a protected person. An unmistakable implication generally requires the use of multiple elements/phrases from a protected name. The relational marker does not need to be in the new submission for conflict to apply. That is, if a registered item includes a relational marker followed by a complete name and the new submission is the same as that complete name, it is in conflict.

For example, Alice fitz Henry is not an unmistakable claim to be the child of Henry Tudor, but Alice fitz Henry Tudor is. Felicia uxor Willemus le Tailor is an unmistakable claim to be the wife of a registered Willemus le Tailor. Similarly, Llewelyn ap Owen is an unmistakable claim to be the father of a registered Morgan ap Llewelyn ap Owen.

A person may make a claim to such a relationship with the permission of the protected person. This does not require demonstrating that the individual has that legal relationship. You can give a stranger permission to have a name that appears to be the name of your child, parent, or spouse.

E. Registration with Permission to Conflict: The owner of an item may grant permission to conflict to a new submission for either identity conflict or relationship conflict Such permission may be granted either individually through a letter of permission to conflict or universally through a blanket letter of permission to conflict. Any change to appearance is sufficient to allow the registration of a personal name with a letter of permission to conflict. A submission identical to the registered item will not be registered even with permission to conflict. This is also applicable to conflict through relationship, with a letter of permission to claim relationship.

This item was on the 08-2011 LoAR

5: Personal Names 4 - New Rule Change

OSCAR is unable to find the name, either registered or submitted.

Personal Name Section Four: Personal Names: Presumption

A. Definitions: Presumption is the claim to identity or close relationship with a person outside the SCA (i.e. in the mundane world) who is considered quite important by many people within and outside the Society. Presumption is not dependent on intent. If a submission is too close to the name of a protected individual or claims to be a direct relative of a protected individual, it presumes on the name and may not be registered. People from all periods of history as well as the present may be important enough to protect. Given the nature of the Society, people who lived within the scope of our period are somewhat more likely to be considered important enough to protect than people from other places and times.

B. Individuals Protected from Presumption: A personal name submission is only considered to presume on protected personal names. Names of important non-SCA individuals are protected from presumption. People who are not important enough to have an entry in a standard print encyclopedia, such as the Encyclopedia Britannica, are generally not important enough to protect. Newly famous individuals may rarely be considered important enough to protect even if they have not yet appeared in a print encyclopedia. Individuals who do have an entry must be further considered.

People are considered important enough to protect if they meet the following standards:

1. Sovereign rulers of significant states are generally important enough to protect. Some historical city-states are not considered significant states. Provinces or regions integrated into larger units like the Holy Roman Empire are not generally considered significant states.

2. Individuals recognized by a significant number of people in the Society (without having to look them up in a reference) are generally important enough to protect. Individuals recognized only by specialists in a subject are unlikely to be important enough to protect. Individuals who are only recognized with the assistance of reference books are unlikely to be important enough to protect.

3. Individuals whose work and/or life are still influential today are generally important enough to protect. Those whose work significantly shaped the course of world history, science, or the arts are generally important enough to protect. This is generally measured by examining measures like the length of encyclopedia articles about the person and his/her work, numbers of search engine hits for the individual, and the like.

4. Fictional characters may also be considered important enough that their names need to be protected from presumption. Fictional characters are generally important enough to protect from presumption when two conditions are met. They are: a) a significant number of people in the Society recognize the character's name without prompting and b) the use of the name would generally be considered by those people a clear reference to that character.

C. Forms of Names Protected: For individuals important enough to protect, we protect all forms in which their name was known, including in other languages. We do not protect names that people might be identified as, but were not actually known.

For example, we protect Christopher Columbus, Cristobal Colon, Christophorus Columbus, etc. as these were known forms of the name of the famous explorer. However, while Carlos V of Spain was also the count of Barcelona, we do not protect him as Carlos of Barcelona, as his name was not recorded or referenced in this form.

D. Standards for Presumption: A name is said to presume on a protected name if it is not substantially different in sound and appearance from it or creates an unmistakable claim to close relationship with that protected individual. A name does not presume on a protected name if it is substantially different in sound and appearance from it and does not make such an unmistakable relationship claim. The standards for substantial difference and unmistakable relationship claims are set out in Personal Name Section Three above.

E. Combination of Family Name and Armory: Even if a piece of armory is not considered important enough to protect from presumption, the use of a piece of historical armory combined with the family name of the holder may be presumptuous. For details, see A7, Presumption.

This item was on the 08-2011 LoAR

6: Personal Names 5 - New Rule Change

OSCAR is unable to find the name, either registered or submitted.

Personal Name Section Five: Personal Names: Pretense

A. Definitions: Pretense is a claim to a rank or powers that the submitter does not possess or that we do not allow anyone to claim.

B. Claim to Rank: Names may not contain a claim to a rank that the submitter does not have. This includes the following:

1. Use of Elements that Appear to Be Titles: Names may not contain an element or group of elements that create the appearance of a claim to have a specific rank or title that the submitter does not possess. Those titles which are so protected can be found in the List of Alternate Titles. Submitters may register names that create a claim to rank that they do possess. Only permanent ranks may be used in names. No submitter may register a byname meaning king or princess, as those are not permanent ranks. Landed barons who are not court barons may not register a byname meaning baron.

Attested bynames which are identical to titles used in the Society are generally not allowed for individuals who do not have that rank. Relatively minor changes to the form of the byname can remove the appearance of a claim to rank.

For example, only a knight can register the byname Knight or Chevalier, as both are titles used in the Society for a knight. However, while the family name Visconti is derived from the word for viscount (visconte) it is not actually the restricted title and thus the byname Visconti is not a claim to be a viscount.

Bynames using titles not used within the SCA cannot be considered a claim to a rank, such as Pope. Nonetheless, such names will only be registered if they were used as bynames by normal people who did not have that rank.

Given names that are identical to titles and forms of address may be registered in contexts that make it clear that they are names and not titles.

For example, a given name like Regina may be registered in a name like Regina the Laundress or Regina Smith. Names like Regina of England or Regina Juliana of York will not be registered. They create the appearance to claim the restricted title Queen.

Bynames incorporating the names of Society peerage orders and real-world knightly orders are not considered a claim to rank or membership in those orders.

For example, the use of an attested byname de la Rose or atte Pelican, both derived from inn-sign names, is not a claim to be a member of the order.

2. Dynastic Names: Names may not contain a byname uniquely used by a single dynasty. Dynastic names used by both a royal family and normal people are acceptable. While some kingdom names were originally used primarily or exclusively by royalty, those names came to be used so widely that they are not considered a claim to rank.

For example, the byname Hohenstaufen was used only by a single ruling dynasty, and thus cannot be used for SCA names, as it makes a claim to be a member of that specific dynasty. We do not limit the use of bynames like Tudor, Stuart, or Bourbon, as these bynames were used by many people who were not part of those ruling dynasties.

3. Combination of Family Name and Location: Names may not contain both a family name used by an important noble family and the area from which that family derives their title or the seat of the family. Such a combination is considered a claim to rank. Generally this name pattern is limited to Scottish clan chiefs and to barons, counts, and other members of the high nobility.

For example, a name submission cannot use the byname combinations Campbell of Argylle or Tudor of England. The bynames Campbell, of Argylle, Tudor, and of England are each registerable individually.

4. Honorific Names: Name phrases that were only granted as an honor or award by rulers cannot be registered. Such names are a claim to rank.

For example, the Arabic titles Salah al-Din or Saif al-Mulk were always honors given by a ruler, and thus are a claim to rank.

5. Combination of Occupational and Locative Bynames: Names may not combine an occupational byname and a locative byname in a way that seems to be a claim to rank or official position, like the Bard of Armagh or Abbot of Saint Giles or Champion of Ealdormere. Most such combinations do not have this appearance, as the Seamstress of York is unlikely to be understood to be the only seamstress, or an official seamstress. This should not be understood to suggest that the Crown cannot make such appointments; however, as they are not necessarily permanent, such appointments may not be used as justification for registered names.

C. Claim of Powers: Names may not contain an unmistakable claim to superhuman abilities, magical powers, or divine origin.

In general, the use of a name phrase used by normal human beings during our period is not considered to be a claim to superhuman abilities or divine origin.

For example, we will register Odinson, because Odin was used as a human given name in Middle English and in Norwegian. Similarly, we will register an English byname Devil, because it is attested as a human descriptive byname in medieval England. On the other hand, we will not register a name like Tyrsson, because the only known use of Tyr is as the name of an Old Norse god. Such a name would be a claim to a divine origin.

There are examples of attested given names and bynames that are claims to magical abilities or other superhuman abilities. Such names will not be registered unless they can be demonstrated to have been used in contexts that are not claims to magical abilities. Use of them by multiple individuals is often sufficient to do so, unless they all were understood to have the same magical power.

One example is the Norse byname sundafyllir, which is a reference to a story in which the owner filled a strait with fish through magic. Such a name would not be registerable.

This item was on the 08-2011 LoAR

7: Personal Names 6 - New Rule Change

OSCAR is unable to find the name, either registered or submitted.

Section Six: Personal Names: Offense

A. Definitions: No name that is offensive to a large segment of members of the SCA or the general public will be registered. Offense is a modern concept; just because a name was used in period does not mean that it is not offensive to the modern observer. Offense returns should be rare; it has not been unusual for years to pass between returns for offense.

Offense is not dependent on intent. The fact that a submitter did not intend to be offensive is not relevant. The standard is whether a large segment of the SCA or the general public would be offended.

Similarly, offense is not dependent on clarity. A foreign language name that has an offensive meaning may be considered offensive, even if many English-speaking listeners would not understand the term without explanation.

B. Types of Potentially Offensive Names: Several types of names are defined as potentially offensive:

1. Vulgar Names: Names which include pornographic or scatological terms will not be registered. While some documented bynames refer to parts, those which refer in explicit ways to genitals will not be registered, such as certain Old Norse bynames. Bynames which refer to other body parts are not generally vulgar and will be registered. Likewise, names that have been used as euphemisms for genitals are not considered vulgar and will be registered

Names that will be understood by the modern English listener to be offensively vulgar will be considered vulgar even if the meaning in the original language is not vulgar. Relatively small changes to name elements can remove the appearance of vulgarity.

2. Offensive Religious Terminology: Names which include religious terms used in a way that mock the beliefs of others will not be registered. This includes both incongruous combinations and combinations that are excessively religious and may be offensive to believers and non-believers alike. Most religious terminology is not offensive. Names with non-offensive religious terminology will be registered.

For example, the incongruous combinations Muhammad the Pope or Mary the Harlot of Babylon would not be registerable.

3. Derogatory Stereotypes: Names which include ethnic, racial, or sexuality-based slurs and references to derogatory stereotypes will not be registered. This is not dependent on the period associations of the usage. It is an issue based on modern understandings of the offensiveness of terms. General references to ethnic, racial, or sexual identities are not offensive and may be registered.

4. Offensive Political Terminology: Names which include terms specifically associated with social or political movements that are offensive to a particular race, ethnicity, religion or similar group will not be registered. Likewise, names with references to events or ideas that are offensive to a similar group will not be registered. Even if used without prejudice in period, such terms are offensive by their modern context.

For example, name phrases that suggest participation in pogroms or repressive movements, like Judenfeind, a period German name meaning "enemy of the Jews," will not be registered.

C. Names as a Whole: Even when no name element is itself offensive, an entire name may be offensive. A name that mocks a public person or another member of the Society by adding an element like "le Idiot" is not allowed. In general, such a reference must be unmistakable; this generally requires multiple elements from a protected name. Likewise, a name that creates an offensive idea through a combination of words is not allowed.

OSCAR counts 7 Rule Changes. These 7 items may or may not require payment. There are a total of 7 items submitted on this letter.

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