Return to Arts & Sciences

Windmasters Hill Baronial Calligraphers & Illuminators Guild Handbook

[This material is copyright 1991 by Dennis R. Sherman. Additions and revisions copyright 1998 by Linda Pancrazio,  2003 by Marybeth Lavrakas, and 2016 by Kit Wellner.  It may be freely copied for not-for-profit use, if it is copied in its entirety including this copyright notice. Please send a copy of publications to the author.]

Calligraphy & Illumination Guild Charter
[Heraldic art copyright held by its respective authors (each work is signed and dated). It may be freely copied for not-for-profit use.]


Scroll Layout
Scroll Text Layout and Wordsmithing
Baronial Awards
Champion’s Text
Baronial Heraldry & Heraldic Art


Many thanks to the heralds and scribes throughout the history of the Barony of Windmasters’ Hill, both inside and outside her borders, who have added information, art, and effort to this handbook. Particular thanks are given to Master Robyyan Torr d’Elandris , Lady Katheryn Rous, Lady Fine ingen Tomaltaig, Lord Eogan MacAlpin, and Lord Etienne Le Mons for input and artwork.

Baruna Sajah bint-Habushun ibn-Ishandiyar al-Hajjaji
November, 2016


The purpose of this document is to provide a set of acceptable artistic expectations, size parameters, and stand-ardized sample scroll texts for awards given in the Barony of Windmasters’ Hill Kingdom of Atlantia. Scrolls are an original work of art and should be approached as such, allowing the calligrapher and illuminator as much free-dom as possible. But scrolls are also meant to represent the ideals of period art and be farmable in our modern era so there must be some specificity applied. Scrolls in the SCA vary in ornament from extraordinary works of art to simple legal documents. Typically, Baronial award scrolls are among the simpler scrolls done. Clear, neat calligraphy, with a small amount of illumination works well but the style and complexity are the artist’s purview. For the purposes of this document, a scroll has several parts: the opening, the name of the recipient, the name of the award, perhaps a description of what the award is given for, the date and the closing. When you are com-fortable with designing your own scrolls, the order of the parts may be varied somewhat. Each part is treated separately below, along with scroll layout and how assignments are made.


Assignments for upcoming or backlogged scrolls can be obtained from the current Baronial Clerk Signet. When the scroll is done, please deliver it to either the Baronial Clerk Signet or Baronial Herald. They will see it gets to the baronage for signature and delivery in court or, in the case of backlogs, directly to the recipient.

Scroll Layout Expectations

Scrolls for Baronial awards the same artistic expectations are used as found in the kingdom scribal handbook:

  •  It is expected that scribes will make every reasonable effort to utilize materials that reflect the appearance of medieval artwork. This may include period and medieval materials as cost and comfort/experience of the scribe. It is preferred that gouache or period pigments and permanent inks be used and that acrylic paints, felt –tipped pens, and such mate-rials be avoided. Pergamenata, parchment, vellum, Bristol board, cold-press watercolor paper or other acid-free ground is recommended.
  •  It is expected that scribes will attempt to produce illumination from a period exemplar or original artwork that is in keeping with one of the many period styles unless otherwise outlined in a commission/assignment. It is recommended that the scribe attempt to find out something about the recipient if the scribe is comfortable personalizing the scroll, particularly for a backlog.
  •  It is expected that scribes will make every reasonable attempt to match calligraphic style with illumination style.
  •  It is expected that scrolls will be prepared with at least a 1” margin around any art or text to allow for trimming to fit a frame or to cover any edge damage which may occur during transfer, presentation, and transport.
  •  It is expected that scribes will adhere to the instructions and consider the suggestions contained within this handbook regarding the creation of scrolls.
  •  It is encouraged that scribes do their own wordsmithing. While there are a number of prepared texts in the following pages and examples of phrases to splice into a text there is strong support for creativity in text as there is in illumination. It is encouraged to use the texts in this handbook as exemplars and, if comfortable, to expand and personalize the scroll texts as suits the award, its purpose, or the persona or preferences of the recipient. Please check with the Baronial Clerk Signet or awarding baronage to insure the wording is ac-ceptable before inking!

The size of the face of the scroll should equal the standard mat openings for standard frame sizes [See below.] Use large margins, generally 1” around the face to allow for safe handling and transfer as well as ease in framing. It is also recommended to leave at least 1/4” margin within the face to offset the work and not crowd it up against the mat.

Frame Size  Mat Opening  Paper Size 
11″ x 14″ 7.5″ x 9.5″ 8.5″ x 10.5″
16″ x 20″ 10.5″ x 13.5″ 11.5″ x 14.5″
20″ x 24″ 15.5″ x 19.5″ 16.5″ x 20.5″
24″ x 36″ 19.5″ x 29.5″ 20.5″ x 30.5″

Leave plenty of room for signatures at the bottom. Use guidelines marked lightly in pencil when laying out callig-raphy and remember to erase them when you’re finished. Using a T-square or Ames lettering guide to mark the guidelines will help insure they are straight. You might want to use different color ink for the recipient’s name and, possibly, for the name of the award. Plan ahead to make the text balanced on the page.

Additional information can be found on line via the links pages maintained by the Atlantian Clerk Signet [] and the Minister of Arts and Sciences [].

Scroll Text Layout and Wordsmithing


Begin the scroll with one of the following phrases or an approximation:

  • Be it known to all whom these presents come, that…
  • Be it known that We, [fill in the names of the Baron / Baroness] do hereby recognize…
  • Let all know that…
  • See here and know that…

Please note that even when there is only one Baron or Baroness giving the award, you still use the Royal “We” rather than He or She in the text. This is an affectation that highlights the rank of the person giving the award.

Name of Recipient

After the opening, include the name of the person receiving the award. The scribe should insist on getting the full name for the scroll, including titles, if any. Don’t be tempted to take responsibility for getting the names right – check with the Baronial Herald.


The scroll needs to say what the award is for, so here include a phrase like

…by reason of [his/her] [artistic endeavor/martial prowess/unflagging service]…

The detail will be something like “his skill at brewing” or “her skill as an archer on the field of battle” or “his long and devot-ed service.”

Name of Award

Now identify the award. Be certain it matches grammatically with the rest of the text.

  • …is recognized as a member of the [Award Name]…
  • …is hereby created a member of the [Award Name]…
  • …shall be known as a member of the [Award Name]…
  • …and do hereby award [him / her] the [Award Name]…


The date will be the date at which the award is/was given, not the date the scroll is made. One of the following forms or an approximation can be used:

  • Done this [number] day of [month], at [event] [Anno Societatis/A.S] [year in Roman numerals]
  • Done this day, being the [number] of [month], [Anno Societatis/A.S] [year in Roman numerals] in Our Cantonof [canton name]

Anno Societatis [year of the Society] is calculated from May 1, 1966. If you need to verify that you have written the correct year, a complete table listing modern and corresponding A.S. years can be found in the Kingdom Scribal Handbook.


The Baron and/or Baroness need to sign the scroll, so leave a space for a signature[s] at the bottom. It is optional to write the word “Baron” and/or “Baroness” directly underneath the signature space and also optional to draw a line for the signature[s]. It is also acceptable to include the name of the barony, Windmasters’ Hill in this closing.

Return to top


Be it known to all to whom these presents come, that Joe the Schmoe, by reason of his great skill at schmoozing, shall be known as a member of the Order of the Boreas. Done this 15th day of November, AS XXXVI, in our Canton of Kapellenberg.

(leave space for Baron and/or Baroness’ Signature)

Baron and Baroness, Windmasters’ Hill

Let all know that Myfynwy of Elvegast, by reason of her long and devoted service to the fighters of this barony, is recognized as a member of the Order of Don Quixote. Done this 23rd day of November, in the reign of Logan and Isabella, at the Unnamed Event.

(leave space for Baron and/or Baroness’ Signature)

Baron and Baroness, Windmasters’ Hill

Return to top

Champion’s Texts

The Baronage of Windmasters’ Hill appoint Champions at their pleasure. The texts below may be used as models for champion’s scrolls.

Baronial Courtier

Be it known to all that We, (Baron’s name) and (Baroness’ name), Baron and Baroness of Windmasters’ Hill, knowing (name) to be an honorable and trusted subject, and having observed (her/his) skill on the rapier field this day, do name (him/her) Our Baronial Courtier. Awarded by Our hand this day of , A.S. (year).

Baronial Artisan

We, (Baron’s name) and (Baroness’ name), Baron and Baroness of Windmasters’ Hill, give you greetings. Knowing the many good works and labors of (name) and having weighed the beauty of (his/her) work submitted this day, declare that (s/he) shall stand in Our court as Baronial Artisan. Done by Us this (number) day of (month), A.S.(year) .

Baronial Bard

Shout gladly to all that We, (Baron’s name) and (Baroness’ name), Baron and Baroness of Windmasters’ Hill, find the works and deeds of (name) to be of such merit, both today and in the past, that We wish for (him/her) to join Our court as Baronial Bard. Done by Our hand this (number) day of (month), A.S.(year) .

Armored Combat Champion

Proclaim unto all that We, (Baron’s name) and (Baroness’ name), Baron and Baroness of Windmasters’ Hill, having weighed well the honorable works and labors of (name), and having observed (her/his) combat skills this day, do hereby command (her/him) to stand as the Armored Combat Champion of this Our barony. Done by Our hand the (number) day of (month), A.S.(year).

Archery Champion

Hear ye all and tell others that We, (Baron’s name) and (Baroness’ name), Baron and Baroness of Windmasters’ Hill, knowing much good of (name), and having beheld (his/her) skills with bow and arrow, do command the said (first name) to take their place as Our Baronial Archery Champion. Done this (number) day of (month), A.S.(year) .

Return to top

Baronial Heraldry and Heraldic Art

Baronial Heraldry and Heraldic Art can be found here.

Return to top

A printable copy of this document can be found here.

Permanent link to this article: