ALRF 25 for 25th ~ Monarchs
The twenty-fifth season of the Alabama Renaissance Faire is tomorrow. To celebrate the Silver Anniversary I have been counting down till festival weekend with a post a day reflecting back on the history of the faire.
Photo #24 ❖ 1 day till opening gate.
From 2007 ❖ Queen Ostarra
Firenze is cursed no monarch is allowed to rule for more than a year. Every year during the festival some event forces the king or queen off the throne.
Long before Florentia/Firenze was a kingdom, we were a vassal dukedom of the King of Meriddes. But long before the Kingdom of Meriddes existed, this land was a kingdom ruled by a tyrant named Vordrydd, who was cursed by a pious bishop named Bath, so that his heirs would only reign for one year.
How they choose. Each year shortly before the faire, Gode Cookery prepares a fund-raiser feast. The local community attends the feast. They bake small cakes. Anyone who wishes to be King or Queen takes a piece of cake. Whoever gets the coin in their cake will be the monarch for next year’s faire. The newly dubbed Monarch is involved in planning a theme for the next year’s faire. On the last day of faire the current Ruler yields the throne to the next ruler.See the 2009 exchange of the Crown here.
Here is the line of succession for the royalty of the faire. Names, history, and many images provided by the ALRF staff.
I have also asked the former Monarchy that I could locate a few questions and complied their answers in to the timeline.
1993 Pamela I went mad and was publicly accused by her Steward and Herald Lord Aeylwydd (pr. “ailwid”) of all sorts of odd nastiness and was packed off to a convent of Fontevraldine nuns to recuperate and do penance and wound up being elected abbess.Which led to.
1995 Bob I was ensorcelled by a Sidhe (pr. “shee”; a fairy) princess while out hunting one day. His horse threw him and the Sidhe ladye healed him and gave him succor in exchange for his promise to grant her one wish, to do whatever she asked, at some later, unspecified time. He didn’t realize that meant having to agree to go with her to the Sidhe realm. She sent Torok the Troll to escort him away.
1996 Andrew was convicted by an Inquisitorial court of heresy and burned at the stake. Or was he? (If he was burned alive how could he come back as a Duke?)
1997 Donna & Gregory – (who reigned as equals) left for the Holy Land to ransom their son, a Templar knight who was being held hostage by the Saracens
1998 Nightwind of Norwood was accidentally turned into a frog by the magus Zolin
1999 Dorlea abdicated to marry the lowly shepherd Glenn.
2000 Martin II throne was challenged by Baron Victor de Karnage and the King was slain in battle. His body was burnt on a funeral pyre.
2001 Feyana Lynn Brygga a kinsman of Arthur and Morganna, left to go questing after Excalibur
2002 Randall of Olivewood – was poisoned and died at the infirmary of a monastery where he was taken for treatment.(no image)
2003 Zoltan the Wizard King prefered being a Wizard and abdicated to his daughter, Elizabeth.
The Queen later discovered that she was really an elf. She left Firenze for the Elven Kingdom. The throne went to
2004 Orrin Stormreaver was possessed by the spirit of the ancient King Vordrydd, who was cursed by the holy Bishop Brath. Because of his evil crime of stealing his brother’s throne and having him killed Vordrydd and his heirs of the Kingdom of Firenze were cursed to reign only one year. King Orin was forcibly deposed and carted away in irons.
2005 Queen Salana left to join a troupe of mummers.
2006 Queen Freya Igraine Greywolf
Character name: Freya Igrayne Greywolf (no image)
Year of Reign: 2005-2006
How did it feel to be a Queen for a year?
It was a blast to be Queen and I was completely taken by surprise when I got the coin. I spent much of my reign in a leg cast as I had torn my Achilles Tendon. However, I think it actually added to my character. I am known as Freya Igrayne Greywolf, a Viking.
My story to take the throne was that I was a long-lost relative of the original Monarch, one that the family had hoped wouldn’t show up. Myself and my court took over the throne with no resistance from Queen Salana. My reign has extra added to it as I was invited by the Board of Directors of UNA to a Renaissance Feast in my name. I got to travel to Montgomery and appear at a local event to promote the Faire.
The weekend of my Faire, was also homecoming week for UNA so we had the biggest crowd ever.
I decided not to go the conventional way of leaving the throne as others had. Since my character lives in Valhalla, I simply left my crown on my throne and traveled back to the land of the Vikings.
I enjoyed the entire year of my reign. The year of my reign was also the 20th Anniversary of the Faire.
2007 Queen Ostarra
Her rule ended when the throne was sized by Captain Gregory and his pirates.
2008 King Gregory
Character name King Gregory
Year of Reign 2007-2008
How did it feel to be a King for a year?
As to how it felt being King, I felt completely natural. I have always been the Kingly type. But as I walked through the crowd the day of the fair with all the women and children singing, throwing flowers and adoring their King , let me just say, I felt right at home. To bring hope to the hopeless, to see a smile on a peasant with no reason to smile made me fill wonderful.
Some of the things I did while I was King—I sang with the singers, danced with the dancers and bonded with the mercenaries even to the point of firing their canon. One thing I’m exceptionally proud of is when I took the unfair taxes off the shoulders of the dancing girls. Now some will say the King made other arrangement of payment with the dancing girls, to this I will neither say nay or yah. But I will say that any man who would not is unfit to be King.Another thing, When I caught the sheriff, that crooked sheriff stealing from the people’s taxes, I had him put in the stocks where if any justice remains, he is still there. I had my trusted Man of Arms Insane Dave the Gray, My Lovely Queen, and all the People of the Realm that so adore me.
Oh yes, to make up the taxes I lifted from the Dancing girls, I felt it my duty to raise the population 15%. This was back-breaking work as you may know. So that in due time the tax revenue will rise to a normal level.
full post Lost the throne and charged with for alleged piracy, bigamy, stealing rare jewels from other monarchs, and crimes against other countries. The throne was taken by..
2009 Queen Ellianna Saori Minai na Tarnica
Character name: Ellianna Saori Minai na Tarnica
Year of Reign: 2008-2009
Theme: German Black Plague.
How did it feel to be a Queen for a year?
Not to steal a line from Disney, but it was like a dream come true. I had been dreaming of it for eight years and had everything already planned out “just in case” I really got the coin. I got to speak German, eat German food, wear green, dance, sword fight, sing, crack jokes all weekend, and put people in the stocks (only to make them sing Rick Astley before I’d let ‘em out.) I even got to die in a sword fight. I made instant guard costumes for all my 8th grade students so they could be my guards at the royal pavilion. I even sold my book at the faire. (It was inspired by the Renaissance faire and feast.)
Full post she died in battle leaving the throne open to be claimed by Royal Birthright of the niece of Former Queen Ostara.
2010 Queen Sumire of Shivani Rose
Character name: Queen Sumire of Shuvani Rose
Year of Reign: 2009-2010
Theme: Gypsy Queen steals the throne.
How did it feel to be a Queen for a Year?
Actually, I was not the Queen for a mere weekend. I was the Queen for an entire year and I am still a Queen among the gypsies. I enjoyed my time in Frienze, but my people are a nomadic tribe and we tend not to dwell in one setting for too long.
Even as a Royal, I craved nights out under the starry skies and the traveling life style.
A year is a very long time for a Queen who rarely stays in the same village a week. My darling Cousins came all the way from France to celebrate my Queen-ship and partake in the Harvest Festivities. It was that very same cousin who convinced me to leave. It didn’t hurt that the consolation prize for abandoning a dying Kingdom was an extremely handsome pirate!
She left for France Leaving the Kingdom which is now ruled by
2011 Queen Isabella & King Ferdinand
Note: The passing of the Queen picture is up for Photo of the month at World of Rennies Please vote for my photo.
Special Thanks to the ALRF staff for providing the complete timeline and images for 1991-1993, 1995-2001, 2004, 2005, and H G for 1994. and to all the monarchs that replied to the interviews.
*1987-1990 the SCA provided the Monarchs pictures not available