Posts

PRIMA SPADA

Meet the Reenactor Groups 2016

PRIMA SPADA SCHOOL OF FENCE

 

Prima Spada School of Fence is a historical fencing school operating in Queensland, Australia. The School currently has three Salles (fencing halls) located in Brisbane, Maroochydore, and on the Gold Coast. Prima Spada take their school on the road, and will be another highly valued group attending and demonstrating their talents and skills at the Abbey Medieval Festival again this year.

Prima Spada School

Prima Spada is a founding member of the Australian Historic Swordplay Federation, now known as Western Martial Academies of Australia (WMAA). Based on the work of Spanish masters of the 16th and 17th centuries, Prima Spada teaches Renaissance European swordplay as a modern sport.

From the duelling swordplay of the 16th century, Prima Spada has created a challenging and enjoyable activity which can be appreciated at many different levels – as a martial skill, as a sport, or as a movement art. However, Prima Spada seeks to do more than simply reproduce the mechanics of duelling swordplay; the philosophical principles of honour and courtesy that were a fundamental part of the character of a 16th century noble, are also a key facet of what is taught in Prima Spada.

The practical and philosophical approach of Prima Spada creates an enjoyable and accessible form of swordplay where the emphasis lies firmly on quality of execution rather than brute strength or speed. This art resonates with dance movement, and is a unique, flamboyant combat style with a theatrical sensibility.

The Prima Spada style helps its students to develop considerable confidence in themselves and their abilities. From the very beginning, students are constantly challenged to excel at the techniques taught at their level, and encouraged to demonstrate their ability in stylised combat. This also requires one to accord the same respect to one’s fellow students. This is bourne out in School’s motto “Honourable in victory, gracious in defeat”.

See Prima Spada and witness this age old art of swordplay in action at this years Festival!

More on other Reenactors groups here soon! 

Whats new to the Abbey Medieval Festival 2017?

New to the Abbey Medieval Festival 2017

This year we are living up to all expectations some incredible new program additions, authentic groups and amazing stall holders. We have a brand new Friday event – The Friday Joust Tourney – which will give you a very unique view of the festival.

  1. We have updated layout including a new re-enactment village called St. Edith’s Village
  2. Who likes archery? How about horseback archery?  Then you won’t want to miss   Medieval Horse Sports Australia and Knights of Camelot Horse Archery will be demonstrating Horseback Archery.  This incredibly exciting demonstration will feature Australian Horse Archery champions showcasing mounted skill at arms from  three of Australia’s Champion Horse Archers, and will  incorporate the use of bow, sword and lance.  Not to be missed!
  • The 16th century re-enactment group Condottieri will be debuting their new cannon
  • New re-enactment villages including:-
    • Crusader quarter –
    • Dark ages will be redesigning their layout to make an easier throuughfare for the public
  • Trebuchet  – you will not be disappointed

 

And there’s Finger Looping?

 

Anything else?….we will keep you posted.

The second new Village precinct is the “Crusaders Quarter” which will host specialist re-enactment groups. Here, for your entertainment and education, you can see shows and displays such as Bedouin Coffee Making, Cavalry Tactics and Horses: East Meets West talk, and a Lucet and Weaving Workshop.

new templars

Make sure you visit the Info Booth this year, as we will have a REAL SUIT OF ARMOUR on display. This armour was recently purchased by the Abbey Museum, and is originally from the 15th Century!

 

New in the VIP area is a 2 storey, ‘tudor’ themed viewing gallery for our special guests and Sponsors!

 

  • We have wonderful and very exciting addition to our jouster family with the announcement that we have a jouster travelling from France to compete for the Abbey Tournament Champion title!

new joust

 

The Festival is going green! We are determined to keep the festival as environmentally sustainable as possible, so we strongly encourage you to BYO water bottles.  There will be 4 Water Rehydration Stations for unlimited free re-fills.   However, we will be selling limited bottled water around the Festival, including at the St. Michael’s stall.

 

To see all this and much more, plus all the much loved shows and displays from previous years, buy your tickets now!

 

Subscribe to our newsletter to be the first to hear about all things Festival! 

OLTRAMAR

Meet the Reenactor Groups 2016

OLTRAMAR

oltramar blog

Oltramar is a historical display focusing on the lifestyles and culture, equipment and accoutrements of the European nobility who settled on Cyprus in the late 12th– early 13th century. The Oltramar group chose to examine this place and era because during that time Cyprus became a major trading base between the Holy Lands, North Africa and Europe, resulting in a melting pot of European, Byzantine and Islamic culture and goods, and thus making it a very interesting and flamboyant place to study.

Particular attention is paid to maintaining a high standard of equipment and knowledge through intensive research and reconstruction, in all of Oltramar’s displays. Most of their clothing and equipment has been handmade by members and, as far as possible, all items are as historically accurate as they can make them. This ensures the group’s public displays are instructive and stimulating, also creating a deeper understanding of the period through hands-on experience.

Oltramar

The Oltramar groups aim is to extend an enjoyable and educational experience to the public at events like the Abbey Medieval Festival, through practical reconstructions and displays of equipment and skills from a variety of cultures. To promote research and public interest in the period through means of quality displays, and in doing so, flesh out the dry bones of written history by bringing at least a small part of it to life.

To meet the Oltramar Group, book your tickets online now!

Stay tuned for more on our amazing Reenactor groups. 

MEET THE JOUSTERS – PART 3 2016

Meet the final 2 Jousters for the 2016 lineup!

As we are all getting ready and very excited for this years Medieval Festival, the Jousters are training and readying themselves for the ferocious combat that is the Jousting Tournament! The final 2 Jousters have been named, get to know them before you witness them live at the Festival!

 

The Lady Elizabeth – Australia

jousters liz

Lady Elizabeth has been in the jousting world more, behind the scenes and Head Marshall, for nearly 10 years, and has previous Jousted in the 2009 Abbey Tournament. Lady Elizabeth may be more recognized through her horse Flash who carried many an international rider to victory.

Lady Elizabeth has been riding for over 23 years now. She has been competing and training in dressage, show jumping and cross country. She is the founder & head instructor at Moonlight Manor Horse Riding, and teaches horses and riders of all ages & disciplines.

The 2016 Abbey Tournament will be the Lady Elizabeth’s return to the field after many years of training.

Motto:  “Victoria venit in” – “Victory comes from within”

 

Jouster Amanda Challen – Australia 

jousters amanda

Amanda has been working with horses since her early teenage years. She started by simply trail riding, and then into trail guiding and droving. She then became a riding instructor and now works in the racing industry. Amanda trains horses for all sorts of disciplines which includes Jousting. She will be astride ‘Nyx’ – the black daughter of the mighty war horse ‘Fenris’ – a well renowned Jousting horse for many years in the Abbey Tournament.

Amanda has been training under Talisien Bleechmore, Luke Binks, and Sasha Buchmann – all well regarded Jousters within Jousting circles. This will be ‘Nyx’s’ second Joust at the Medieval Festival, this time carrying her breeder and trainer!

Buy your tickets to the Festival and Joust Tournament now!

The Pageant Wagon

What is the Pageant Wagon?

 Some history regarding Medieval Theatre.

wagon

The European Renaissance holds the title of being one of the great ages of theatre. Patronage of acting troupes, the establishment of permanent theatres and playwrights such as Shakespeare and Marlowe, provide solid evidence to support this statement. While this era of theatre is still studied and adored today, it is important to acknowledge that an artistic revolution like the Renaissance is indebted to its predecessor – Medieval Theatre.

By today’s standards, the subject of many plays that make up medieval theatre wouldn’t be considered as exciting as those of the Renaissance, but its history is no less impressive. With its humble beginnings of Catholic priests performing biblical events during mass, it led into the Renaissance with troupes of actors performing on one of the great tools of medieval theatre, the Pageant Wagon.

wagon

A procession of wagons would arrive in town, each performing a scene of a cycle play; the audience would either remain stationary as the wagons passed by, or the wagons would be set up in an open area allowing the public to move from play to play. It was a wonderfully inventive way to allow just about the whole community a chance to see a performance.

Unfortunately, modern day occupational health and safety standards make it a little tricky to have a pageant wagon; however 2015 saw the debut of a new venue at Abbeystowe – the Pageant Wagon – the Abbey Medieval Festival’s little homage to staging for medieval theatre. Last year the Abbey Medieval House Troupe tested the waters a little by performing Shakespeare and a variety of children’s stories on our new stage. Conveniently situated near the Market Place, the Pageant Wagon stage will be in full swing in 2016 with a full program of theatre, costume and music.

A guaranteed favourite at the Pageant Wagon stage will be the children’s story telling. Developed and performed by the Abbey Medieval House Troupe, the story telling will take place from 12-1pm, and again 3.30-4pm both Saturday and Sunday at the Festival. Performed ‘players theatre’ style, the stories are told by a narrator with sections acted out by performers.

wagon

Stories for 2016 are will include:

St George and the Dragon

Robin Hood and the Golden Arrow

King Arthur and the Sword and the Stone.

Come and sit by the Pageant Wagon stage – the perfect opportunity for families to have lunch while being entertained! Cheer for the good guys and boo at the baddies!

Buy your tickets now to see the Pageant Wagon come to life! 
If anyone would like to fund the construction of a functioning pageant wagon that meets modern day OH&S standards, please contact our House Troupe Coordinator, you will quickly become her favourite person. Ever.

CONROI

Meet the Reenactor Groups 2016

CONROI

 

The membership of Conroi is made of like minded individuals who have an interest in doing Living History/Re-enactment from different time periods.

Any time, Any place, Any Class

Conroi is a multi-time period Living History/Re-enactment Group without restriction on class, location or time. This is to allow all areas of individual interests to be permitted and encouraged. It is our goal for each event to have a focused look and feel. We strive for a high level of gear which is supported by appropriate documentation and high levels of discussion within our group. Our members are like minded individuals, who are always improving on their knowledge, gear and displays due to new research and suppliers.

Philosophy

The Conroi Motto is “With all, For All.” We are here to enjoy our individual interests but also to support others in our group in their interests. Another aspect of Conroi is the bringing together individuals or groups of re-enactors so the Living History aspects of our hobby can be enhanced and improved through Workshops, Living History Events, Historical Shows. Re-enactors from other groups do not have to be a member of Conroi to enjoy the activities we will be organising. We love individuals or groups attending with us as it is our firm belief is that we all (the living history/re-enactment community) have something to bring to an event, even if it is just your presence.

Abbey Festival 2016

Our focus for Abbey 2016 is 1250-1325AD, with some specific displays related to Simon De Monfort and 1264, including the significant range of events leading to the change for the governing structure in England and the birth of the modern day parliament.

Around the encampment, the Conroi will show everyday living items and activities from around this time period. Lord Frederick will oversee the Baronial Court, Sir William will lead the Conroi banner in the William Marshall Tourney. Head Squire Henri will be keeping the younger squires in line and working hard.

Conroi (crusader qtr)

We are joined this year by a newly hired Mercenary Band (Mercenaries of Western Europe) who will display stout hearts during battles, provide guards for Lord Frederick. Captain Ranjie has his hands full controlling his mercenary band however is supported by the experienced Sergeant John DeLuc. No easy task going by the presence of one of the mercenaries in the Baronial Court on charges of drunk and disorderly.

Overseeing all this are the true commanders of the camp, Lady Marguerite and Lady Emma.

Stay tuned for more on the Reenactor Groups this year!

To meet the member of Conroi in person, by your tickets now!

Celebrating Shakespeare

‘Eaten me out of house and home’

‘Forever and a day’

‘Good riddance’

‘Wear my heart upon my sleeve’

We’ve all heard one or all of these saying before. But did you know where they came from? Who was the first person to say or write them?

These are just some of the common phrases made popular by the great playwright and wordsmith William Shakespeare!

Ever eat a meal so delicious that the only was the describe it was to say it was “a dish fit for the gods!”

Shakespeare did.

Did your parents ever get so exasperated at your siblings (not you, of course) you hear them say “for goodness sake!”

Yep, that came from Shakespeare.

Every knows a good “Knock Knock, who’s there” joke!

That phrase came from Shakespeare too!

Going on a “wild goose chase”!

Yep, you guessed it. Shakespeare.

 

Mind Blown.

shakespeare

 

Celebrating Shakespeare with the Abbey Medieval House Troupe!

23rd April 2016 marked the 400th anniversary of the death of William Shakespeare, and while the Bard may be ‘dead as a doornail’ (another one, thanks William!), his contributions to literature, theatre and the English language are immense and still celebrated today.

To mark this anniversary, the volunteers of Abbey Medieval House Troupe have been hard at work over the past few months developing and rehearsing a tribute to Shakespeare. Sorting through his plays to find a mere sample of gems to perform has proved to be an endeavour not for the ‘faint hearted’ (they just keep coming!). However the Troupe have managed to narrow it down to a select few including, but not limited to Macbeth, King Lear, Richard III, A Midsummer Night’s Dream, and of course, Romeo and Juliet.

We cannot ignore the line we are dancing on with historical accuracy here, the Abbey Medieval Festival celebrates the Middle Ages, specifically Europe and the Middle East from 600 – 1600AD, thankfully for us we just touch on the English renaissance, and ‘as good luck would have it’ many of Shakespeare’s works are believed to have been penned in the late 1500s.

Come and see the House Troupe’s tribute this year!

Join the House Troupe to be a part of amazing shows like this, and many others!

Black Plague Doctor

 Have you ever wondered who/what the person dressed in black with a white long beaked mask is? Or do you know a little about this person/character, but would love some more info?

Meet

The Black Plague Doctor!

plague

History:

Typically donned head to toe in black, with a white, long-beaked mask, the Black Plague Doctor is one of many iconic figures from the middle ages, largely due to the unique and often terrifying mask. Fully covering the face with glass openings for their eyes, the mask’s prominent feature is the long curved beak shaped nose that typically held dried flowers, herbs and spices to keep away the bad and evil smell of their patients. Although this character has a foreboding presence, seen as the bringer of death, they were instructed to treat patients in a friendly and kind manner.

It was believed that the Plague was spread by smell, hence the stuffed beak and clothing designed to basically cocoon the doctor. A shining example of the archaic medical practice and understanding of medicine and disease at the time.

Today:plague

The Black Plague Doctor is a fascinating character and one we love to profile at the Abbey Medieval Festival. Since 2013, the role of resident Plague Physician has been filled by Murray, a volunteer with the Abbey Medieval House Troupe, who, every year, travels from Victoria to rid Abbeystowe of the deadly Plague. To show that he is not to be feared, Murray has been seen playing ring-around-the-rosy and soccer with patrons at the Abbey. Treating patients is his first priority, and he always likes to lend a helping hand to clear out the dead at the end of the day.

If you spot our wonderful plague doctor at the Abbey Medieval Festival this year, feel free to stop and say hello, ask for a photograph, or treatment advice* – his plague pillows are highly effective!

*Disclaimer: Murray is only qualified to assist with medieval treatment of the black plague.

To meet Murray, whoops I mean, The Black Plague Doctor this year, buy your tickets now!

Join the Abbey Medieval Festival House Troupe!

New Banquet Bowls!

A lovely new handmade addition to our Medieval Banquets..!

banquets bowls

Expertly handmade by the lovely Bribie Island local Potter Bev Porter (as shown above), these new Banquet bowls have been made to specifications required for a medieval feast!

These bowls will be used for the salads, and will stay on the tables throughout the Medieval Banquet nights, so our guests can ‘pick’ throughout the evening, taking second and maybe even third helpings!

banquets bowls

Some more things you can expect to see and experience at the Medieval Banquets 2016:

  • Trenchers – 10 points if you know what these are 😉
  • Blazing fire
  • Rich, authentic Medieval costumes
  • Full platters, bursting with delicious Medieval foods, and mulled wine
  • Dancing, and authentic Medieval entertainment
  • Courtesies and manners, gallant words and gaudy tales of old!
  • Delight your sense of smell with the aroma of baked lamb shanks, veggies and much more
  • Taste the essence of medieval herbs and spices which make this a feast like no other
  • The touch of rose water to cleanse your hands in preparation for your night ahead.
  • Leave with full stomach and possibly wake up with a sore head!

Whether you have never been to a Medieval Banquet before, or if you are a regular guest, don’t miss this years Medieval Banquets – a true feast for all your senses!

Buy your tickets now as we are almost ALL SOLD OUT!

Subscribe to our newsletter to stay up to date with all things Banquet and Festival!

 

CONDOTTIERI

Meet the Reenactor Groups 2016

CONDOTTIERI

condottieri

By the early 15th century, the coffers of the Italian city states were overflowing with gold from their trade with the east. Cities like Milan, Florence and Venice had grown in size, prestige and affluence, however their dependence on peasants to fill the ranks of their armies made them prime targets for attack by foreigners and neighbours alike.

 In order to defend their territories, the city states hired large groups of mercenaries called “Condotta”, which were lead by captains called Condottieri.

 Unlike the Knights of other European countries, Condottieri were not necessarily nobles. Many were low born and more than a few were foreigners. Anyone with the skills and determination could become Condottieri; for this they were rewarded with wealth, land, recognition and fame.

However, some were little more than bandits and thieves and it was not uncommon for them to change sides, for the right price, and many of them receiving bribes from towns to avoid being attacked.

The Condottieri attracted all those in society who aspired for greatness; some were adventurers, great captains, statesmen, patrons of the arts, patriots and others, like Hawkwood, Sforza, Malatesta, Federico Da Montefeltro and the Medici’s, were powerful political figures who left their mark on history.

Condottieri

The Condottieri living history group is a group dedicated to recreating the look and feel of an Italian mercenary encampment in the late 15th century. Various aspects of the lives of the nobility, knights, soldiers, craftsmen and camp followers are brought to life for the entertainment and enjoyment of all. This includes the clothes they wore, the foods they ate, the games and entertainment they enjoyed, their arts and crafts and their military and martial skills. All this and much more will be on display at the Abbey Medieval Festival this year.

 

To see these amazing displays by the Condottieri group this year, buy your tickets now!

Check back here for more on other Reenactor groups.

COTTEREAUX

Meet the Reenactor Groups 2016

COTTEREAUX

cottereaux

Cottereaux (1189 – 1202)- Company of the Dagger is a 45 member strong reenactment group portraying life on the road for a group of travelling knights, their men-at-arms and their squires.

Cottereaux, derived from a French word meaning ‘dagger’, have a predominantly European background with a smattering of mercenaries from far and wide. The group used to be a mercenary company but with the Papal decree of 1187, in which the use of mercenaries were outlawed, the group, under Baron Ulric de Tracey, have settled in Acre having been awarded a barony.

This group also has a church element represented by Warrior Priests from the Order of St John. With the Company settling down in a Barony, the Company actively seeks artisans and merchants to build on town atmosphere.

Cottereaux

The Company specializes in Siege equipment having built several scale models of counter weights Trebuchets, traction trebuchets, Onagers, Siege Ladder trucks, Battering Rams and sappers penthouse. The Company is currently working on a 7 metre counter weight trebuchet and also have plans for a full size Siege Tower.

Cottereaux will be at the Abbey Medieval Festival again this year, so drop by and see some their amazing equipment!

To meet the Cottereaux group this year, buy your tickets now!

Check back for more on other reenactment groups soon!

Find The Answers Here!

Have a question you need answered that you just can’t find on our website?

Below is list of some of the most common questions we have been asked this year. Chances are, you will find the answers you need here.

Can we bring our own lunch?

Yes, you can, just no alcohol. We have our own Tavern on site for this!

What does our ticket entitle us to do?

Your general entry tickets entitles you to visit and view everything inside the Festival, with the exception of the VIP area, and the Jousts. You can buy VIP tickets to enhance your experience even more, and you can buy Joust tickets, for any of the Joust sessions. When you are roaming around the Re-enactor encampments, please feel free to view the camps and ask as many questions as you like. Many of the encampments have workshops and displays as well. Note the encampment etiquette though, and remember that real people are living in these real camps, with their own real food and personal items. Do not enter any personal space and do not eat any food that isn’t specifically for the public. If you are unsure of something, ask!

What children’s activities are available?

There are many activities, shows and displays for children of all ages. See our suggested itineraries for some of the activities available, and the final program will outline everything on offer as well.

If I purchase a weapon on the day, how do I get a permit for the day?

After purchasing your weapon, you will need to head straight to the Security Post and complete some paperwork to obtain the permit.

Is a health card a concession?

Yes it is, see our list of the concession cards we accept.

What time is the Knighting Ceremony on?

The Knighting Ceremony is held on the Friday night before the Festival (8th July) at 7:30pm, in the Abbey Church.

We can’t find the banquet menu on the web page.

The Banquet Menu is on the Medieval Banquet page. You can find the menu here as well.

When will the program be available so we can plan our day?

The program will be available on the website by the end of May. You can also view our Suggested Itineraries for some of the activities and shows on this year.

Will there be first aid personnel on site?

Yes, there most certainly is a team of trained first aid personnel on site all weekend, as well as a security and crowd control team.

answers festival

Still haven’t found your answers? Contact us now

Bought your tickets yet? If not, buy them today!

KNIGHTS OF THE EMPIRE GERMANICA

Meet the Reenactors 2016

 

KNIGHTS OF THE EMPIRE GERMANICA

germanica

Knights of the Empire Germanica is a Medieval German re-enactment group in the High Middle Ages period.
They are a Brisbane based re-enactment group depicting the Germanic nobility of the Holy Roman Empire. They practice armoured combat and try to recreate the colour, traditions and day-to-day life of the nobility and their retainers.

A family orientated group, their aim is to create an environment that enables learning about medieval life. Medieval re-enactment is a way of bringing history to life in an exciting and hands-on way. The members of Knights of the Empire Germanica get to actively create and use their equipment, and find out how it all works in a real-life setting. It is especially rewarding to members to be able to engage in a hobby which can include the whole family.

Knights of the Empire Germanica is a group with many years of activity in Brisbane. ‘KEG’ has close ties with other re-enactment groups with whom they share combat training, public appearances such as attending the Abbey Medieval Festival, and other demonstrations. As a group they share research, cook and share medieval food at feasts, create medieval clothing, armour and equipment, and train warriors to be formidable but entertaining fighters.

Knights of the Empire Germanica are a friendly group and are always happy to interact with the public for discussion or photo opportunities. Come and see them at the Medieval Festival this year!

Knights of the Empire Germanica encampment activities

 

To meet Knights of the Empire Germanica, buy your tickets now!

Read more on other Reenactor groups here.

COMPANIE OF KNIGHTS BACHELOR

Meet the Reenactor Groups 2016

 

COMPANIE OF KNIGHTS BACHELOR

Companie

Companie of Knights Bachelor is one of Brisbane’s oldest re-enactment groups. Established in 1989, this group re-enacts the splendor of the 12th century and early 13th century, and the heroism of the Crusades. Companie members travel across Queensland as well as interstate to attend events such as the Abbey Medieval Festival, and other living history events, to live out life as a member of the 12th century nobility, either fighting in melees and tournaments, or showing off other medieval skills to the public.

The Companie also runs private Medieval Feasts and Living History weekends, to recreate the society and culture of the 12th and early 13th century with artisan craft displays and heroic swordplay.

At the Abbey Medieval Festival each year, Companie of Knights Bachelor reenact the pageantry and excitement of a medieval tournament. Knights join battle in a test of martial strength. Ladies cheer encouragement for their favorite Knight and partake of the gentler art of courtly love. After the Tournaments, the knights and ladies retire to their authentic encampment at Abbeystowe for some feasting, gaming, singing and dancing.

Companie of Knights Bachelor

Members of the Companie take keen interest in medieval arts and crafts, and study the historical background surrounding the Crusades. They employ a high standard of historical accuracy, encouraging every member to do much historical research. All the gear they use at shows and displays has to be documented, to encourage the highest degree of realism that twentieth-century society can produce. Companie of Knights Bachelor and its members are looking forward to returning to the Abbey Medieval Festival this year and educating and entertaining the public one again!

To come and meet the Companie of Knights Bachelor, buy your tickets now!

Check back here for more on Meet The Reenactors 2016

KNIGHTS OF THE LONGDOG

Meet the Reenactor Groups 2016

 

KNIGHTS OF THE LONGDOG

 

 

The Knights of the Longdog 
are on a noble quest to educate people about the important role greyhounds (sight hounds) played in medieval times, and about what wonderful pets they make. The group represents a new generation of champions – we don’t wear chain mail, joust, or win sword fights…but we are brave, fearless and loyal, much like our hounds. We show the public and other re-enactors the lives sight hounds would have had, and portray the individuals who would have owned or cared for them during the 12th – 14th centuries in England.

In modern times/the real world, we are a mix of dog lovers who enjoy history and their hounds. We have greyhounds (generally rescued racing dogs), Borzoi (Russian Wolfhounds), and Irish Wolfhounds – all whom would have been called “greyhounds” in the medieval period. We also have an Alaunt who has just joined the group, and brings with her a number of trained rats who help us teach people about the role rats played in the medieval period!

We do a lot of training with our dogs and their owners to ensure the dogs are very comfortable with huge crowds and people of all ages. We do performances at the Abbey Medieval Festival that showcase their skills, and also give people an opportunity to feed the hounds! We give people lots of information on how they lived (they had awesome kennels), what they wore (harnesses, decadent collars, capes), how they were trained (which was mainly food based, just like it is today), who looked after them…you name it, you can learn about it so make sure you visit us this year at the Abbey Medieval Festival!

 

To meet Knights of the Longdog and their amazing hounds, buy your tickets now!

For more on the Reenactors, check back here

JORTH GAR – NEW VARANGIAN GUARD

Meet the Reenactor Groups

 

JORTH GAR – NEW VARANGIAN GUARD

jorth gar

Jorth Gar is based on the Gold Coast in Queensland, but have affiliated branches from Stanthorpe, to Rockhampton, to Northern NSW. They are a professional, active group that can field the largest infantry battle force in Queensland and quite possibly Australia.

Jorth Gar concentrates its living history re-enactment primarily on the earlier Varangian Guardsmen of Viking origin, and their many exploits and accomplishments.

These Mercenaries were originally from Sweden and had spent many years of service with Prince Vladimir in Russia, taking down rivals and helping him to subjugate his lands. They had become furious with the Prince’s “incapacity to pay them correctly” and had demanded to be “shown the way to Constantinople”. When Basil II had requested military aid from Vladimir to take down his rival Vardhas Phokas, Vladimir sent these “unruly warriors” to help and rid himself of their financial burden.

Jorth Gar portray the original Scandinavian Mercenaries who were given to Basil II in 988 CE (as part of a military and trade alliance), who formed the nucleus of the Varangian Guard and became his imperial bodyguard in the palace and on the battle field. They cover up until 1066, where the composition of the Guard started to change, and the “Viking era” ended.

As the treaty between the Rus and Byzantines was also a trading one, many Scandinavian, Slav and Rus merchants and artisans would have accompanied this force to Constantinople to take advantage of this. Some would establish trade routes, others would seek employment in the Byzantine army to help equip its soldiers. Jorth Gar have a strong artisan / craftsman focus as a result.