Barony of Wastekeep

Sergeantry Introduction and History

The History of Sergeants begins in the Kingdom of An Tir. Sergeants are those who have presented themselves to a Baroness and been tested in their areas of expertise and found worthy. Sergeants then swear Fealty to the Baroness. The Term "Sergeant" is a rank, as opposed to an honor, an award for past work done, or a personal bond of fealty, as between a Knight and his Squire. This rank exists in the various Baronies in the Kingdom of An Tir. It is a rank because a person must pass all of the qualifications for the rank In An Tir, The Sergeantry of each Barony expresses a unique character that is a reflection of the current Baroness, the founding Baroness and of The People who comprise The Barony at large. After many years the Sergeant Trials in the Barony of Wastekeep have been expanded to include other areas:

The Order of the Sergeantry was divided into four categories:

Sergeants, the armored fighters
Yeoman, the archers
Gallants, the rapier fighters
Lancers, the equestrian fighters

The Order of Courtier was divided into two categories:

Artisans (excellence in Arts & Sciences)
Stewards (excellence in service and the Courtly arts)

Membership in any of these Orders is not limited to just members of the Barony of Wastekeep. Anyone wishing may attempt the trials, including members from other branches are invited. Also, individuals are not limited to membership in only one Order or area. However, an individual may only compete for one rank at a Trial.

Any member in the Order of Chivalry who has held the rank of Sergeant of Wastekeep shall be considered as, and may use the title of, Sergeant Emeritus of Wastekeep. Any member in the Order of the Laurel who has held the rank of Artisan of Wastekeep shall be considered as, and may use the title of, Artisan Alumnus of Wastekeep. Any member in the Order of the Pelican who has held the rank of Steward of Wastekeep shall be considered as, and may use the title of, Steward Alumnus of Wastekeep. They will be welcome to aid the Baroness in testing future Candidates and their advice and comments are always welcome.

The Barony of Wastekeep holds only one Sergeants Trial each year. An unsuccessful Candidate may try again the next year. The Baroness of Wastekeep feels strongly that a candidate never fails to become a Sergeant; the candidate just is not quite ready. Not passing a Sergeant trial is not an indication of failure; it is instead an encouragement to work harder and try again the following year. The number of members of each Order is unrestricted, and there is no minimum to the number. If no one proves worthy of the Order, none will be chosen.

The Beginning Steps:

     Study the Requirements: The requirements detail what is expected of a Candidate. The General Requirements and Specific Requirements can be downloaded from the Baronial Web site or a printed copy can be obtained by contacting Her Excellency.

     Obtain a Study Packet: A compilation (Study Packet) of useful information is available. A Study Packet can be downloaded from the Baronial Web site or a printed copy can be obtained by contacting Her Excellency. If one is issued, it must be returned at Opening Court before the actual trials begin.

     Obtain a Sponsor: Each Candidate must be sponsored by a Member of the Order and rank that they wish to obtain or by a member of the Orders Emeritus/Alumnus. This sponsor will guide The Candidate through any questions or worries that arise.

     The Statement/Letter of Intent: A minimum of two months prior to the Trials, each Candidate must notify the Baroness of their intentions to attempt The Trials. This notification can be via modern letter or e-mail, the notification must include any concerns or impediments The Candidate may have, such as dyslexia, a difficulty in taking written or oral tests, any physical issues that may be evident, etc.

     Heraldic Submission: Heraldic devices, if not already passed, must be in submission to The Kingdom Principal Herald before the day of Trials. (Time your submissions accordingly).

Each Candidate should be aware that the Baroness and, the Order of Sergeantry and the Order of Courtier of the Barony will be the principal graders for the Trials. However members of the populace will be invited to speak in reference to the Candidates and others may be asked to grade the Candidates as well.

The Trials:

The night before the Trials, get a good meal and get some sleep.
The day of the Trials, arrive early. You will be expected to help setup the site, Eric, and the Baronial Pavilion for the Trials. It is customary for Candidates to the Order of Sergeantry to attend the opening court in armor. There, your Sponsor will present you to Her Excellency as a Candidate. Each Candidate will come to opening court with a banner or shield to display to the populace as they are being introduced
At opening court the agenda for the Trials will be presented. Typical activities include:

     The specialty and marshalling portions of The Trials.

     Fighting candidates inspect the armor and weapons of their specialty. They also inspect gear outside their specialty to determine how well rounded a Marshall they are.
     Courtier candidates inspect armor and weapons of all the fighting specialties.
     Sergeantry and Courtier Candidates are put through their paces. All Candidates get a work out. Remember, for fighting candidates we are testing how well you fight, how long you can continuously fight, and if you fight smart, which, by the way, this includes taking care of yourself.
     Yeoman Candidates shoot their various tests.

     Testing is done on Gaming, Heraldry, and Sciences.
     During the evening Feast; Candidates will display their Dancing Skills, Bardic Ability, and Court of Love presentations.

Remember: "I don't know" is always a better answer than a bluff. Trying to pull the wool over a tester's eyes is the fastest way to fail a test. If, at any time, you feel you are being pushed to your limits, you probably are. It's part of the process.

Testing for the two orders is done by; the Baron & Baroness, those holding the rank, the Emeritus, and any others populace the Baroness feels appropriate. All testing results are reported to the Baron & Baroness, who are the only ones that know how each candidate is doing. At the end of the trials, we go to each candidate individually and tell them if they have passed or not. During that private discussion, they will be told what parts of the tests they had problems with, did not pass and why. At final court, each successful candidate swears fealty to the Barony of Wastekeep through the Baroness. At this time the new members of each order is given the obligations and privileges of the order. Members of the Orders do not re-test. They have achieved their rank and, by doing so, they hold that rank until they choose to give it up. However, if a Sergeant becomes a member of the Order of Chivalry, they must resign from the order of Sergeantry. They must return the buckle and any other appropriate regalia to the Baroness.