Heraldic Submissions

  • As of 1 September 2016, ten dollars ($10) per action. No surcharge for non-members, no discount for members. Make your cheques payable to Kingdom of Meridies / SCA Inc.
  • Please be sure to read the specific instructions for each type of form and about name documentation. These points are CRITICAL to the progress of a submission.
  • Please write as neatly as possible. It is a lot of paperwork, and wanting to get through it quickly is understandable, but please take your time when you fill out the information: we must be able to read your writing! Use an additional sheet of paper if necessary or write in the margin. It is especially important that we be able to read the contact information – ESPECIALLY the email address. This is how Cypher will contact someone when there is a need for more information. Please print clearly, using both upper and lowercase letters, there are many names that use unusual capitalization. Also be very clear when you use accent marks and other punctuation.
  • Please communicate your information thoroughly. Cover letters win major kudos! If a submission has a story behind it (such as “this is a resubmission, it was originally submitted three months ago and was returned for…”), please include this information in a cover letter with the submission. This is a tremendous help when it goes to Pennon and to Laurel for review.
  • Before discussing what to include for documentation, below are some pointers on creating strong documentation:
    • Please be aware of the SCA’s official list of name sources to avoid. Equally helpful is the list of books that require no photocopies – these are solid sources.
    • When gathering documentation, consider whether it qualifies as a primary source. If you are submitting a map, is the map in period? Are the spellings historically accurate to period? If you are submitting a town name (for a locative byname, for instance), do you have documentation that the town was spelled that way in period? Genealogies work the same way. Genealogy and history books will often have anglicized names or spelling changes for modern readers and you must go back farther to document the actual period spelling.
    • Above all, make sure that you read the documentation that you submit! Look beyond the header name – read the full article in the name book – to ensure that your desired spelling is in period. The same goes for web sites. Whether from a book, an online list or a name generator, make sure that the spelling is documented to period. If the form is marked to not accept any changes, but there is no documentation for the specific spelling submitted, the submission will be returned because the heralds will be prevented from changing it to a spelling that the documentation does support.
  • If the source is on the official list of books that do not require photocopies, also known as the “no-photocopy list”, you may simply cite it on the form (author, title, page, and/or name header). If the source is not on this list, please include photocopies or printouts of the source, showing the documentation.
  • Please provide some type of summary on the form, do not just write “See Attached”. If your summary cannot fit in the space provided, use a separate piece of paper.
  • Regarding The Academy of Saint Gabriel
    • Official ASG Reports (not articles) from the Academy are on the no-photocopy list mentioned above.
    • For all other web sources, please include more than just a URL. Please include a printout of the page where you found your documentation. When citing URL’s, please quote the entire URL of the actual page where you found your documentation. We must be able to access your documentation from the URL provided without having to guess at where you clicked next to find what you found. Including the full URL and a printout is the best way to go.
  • The best way to double-check submissions is to have a good understanding of the Standards for Evaluation of Names and Armory (the new name for the rules for submission) and know how to use the Armorial and Ordinary to check submissions for conflicts. As well, the Meridies Heralds email list is an excellent place for SCA heralds to get help on specific questions about the rules.
  • What about all of those check boxes on the Name form?
  • Please be sure that you thoroughly understand the options on the name submission form for individuals (linked at the top of this page). Otherwise, you may inadvertently create a scenario where the only result possible is that the name submission is returned when it might otherwise have been registerable. Ask Cypher if you have any questions.
    • Major and Minor Changes: If quick registration is your client’s goal, it is best to leave both of those blank – allowing all necessary changes. If you do this, the next section should definitely indicate what your client cares most about. Please be sure that the form has a *description* of what that is – do not simply mark meaning, sound, culture, etc. without writing *what* sound, culture, etc. By including specifics of what your client is looking for, you are guiding any changes which must be made. Also, if the form is marked to *not* allow major changes to the name, but there is not adequate documentation for the particular spelling of the name, you have backed yourself into a corner.
    • Be specific when it comes to sound, meaning and culture. Write out the pronunciation – not just the name. Be very explicit when it comes to language and culture; give a location and date. Naming practices changed over time. Say “9th c. Irish” rather than “Irish/Celtic”, as later period Irish naming is dramatically different from early Irish naming.
  • Request for Authenticity: The checkbox to pay especially close attention to is the “[optional] Please change my name to be authentic for….” checkbox. Please make this choice ever so carefully! If this box is checked, you are requesting that the heralds do further research and make changes so that the name is authentic. And we do mean *authentic*… In some cases, but not all, the registered name could be too different from what your client wanted. Also in many cases, the name you originally submitted might have been registrable without the change. Registerable and truly authentic are not the same thing. Certain “weirdnesses” are permitted in name submissions (up to a point – see the SENA) which would not be allowed under a request for authenticity.
    • Asking for the name to be changed for authenticity is great – if your client is willing to allow whatever changes are necessary to accomplish this. Make sure that you know what your client’s expectations are and communicate clearly the specifics of what your client is looking for. Again on this one, if the form is marked to *not* allow major changes to the name, you have effectively cancelled out your request for authenticity. Checking the authenticity box is permission for the name to be changed. Remember to be explicit regarding language and culture.
    • There is also a name submission form for SCA branches (linked at the top of this page). The form lists additional submission requirements regarding the branch (local group), but the policy and advice for the check boxes on the form for individuals holds true for the form for branches.
  • There are two different forms – one for “fielded” badges, one for fieldless badges, and both are linked at the top of this page. Otherwise, treat them just like device forms.
  • Device/Badge forms: the color version
    • Each color device form (linked at the top of this page) should be colored with Crayola® markers (Classic, non-washable). Please do not use color copies or inkjet printers. Yes, coloring by hand is far less convenient. However, the higher-ups who diligently check our work and keep records of everything ever submitted REQUIRE that the colors be represented in Crayola Classic markers.
    • Why? These markers consistently represent heraldic colors very well and retain the color for years and years. Many inkjet printer colors (and copier toner) change under heat conditions normally found on car dashboards, postal carrier vehicles, etc. This means that the color you print out might not be the color that shows up on your form by the time it gets to Laurel. For both the approval process and archive, the colors need to be visually correct.
      • [Added April ’14]: Color laser printed forms are allowed if the colors are consistent and free of streaks. Cypher retains the right to reject a color printed form if it does not meet these standards. Crayola Classic markers are still our preferred method of coloring the forms.
      • [Clarified April ’14]: The black and white forms require line art, like in a coloring book (no fills), not just a photocopy of the color version. Start with a line drawing and then photocopy that to create copies you color.
  • The SCA, Inc. calls a local group a “branch”. There is a submission form for a branch name (linked at the top of this page). To submit a device for a branch, please use the standard device form, with the group’s information in place of the personal information. You’ll also need to include a signed Letter of Petition – see the links at the top of this page.
  • How many copies of the Name form do I need to send? [Updated: April ’14]: Please send one (1) copy each of the name form and the supporting documentation. Make sure that the required signatures are on the form. Keep any extra copies for your own records and your client.
  • How many copies of the Device/Badge form do I need to send? [Updated: April ’14]: Please send one (1) color form PLUS one (1) black and white form. Keep any extra copies for your own records and your client.
  • Preparing to mail the submission packet. Please make sure that you have everything together for each submission. Name form, name documentation, device form, and/or badge form – all with the correct number of copies – your proof of membership, (no longer applicable as of September 2016) and the payment. When you do, clip all of the paperwork for one submission together. Then put all of the submissions in one big envelope. DO NOT FOLD OR STAPLE any part of the submission paperwork.
  • Where do I mail the submissions? Local heralds, please contact me at cypher@meridies.org to ask for my mailing address, as Kingdom Web regulations now forbid the publication of personal information online.

    Kingdom Submissions,
    c/o David Paradise
    4499 Hunters Way
    Stone Mountain, GA 30083


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