Poetry Competition

Jocs Floral Court Annoucement

The Jocs Floral Competition was sponsored and judged by Lady Talia de Morales, Mistress Iselda de Narbonne, and Master Olivier de Bayonne. All of the entries were a genuine pleasure to experience and the judges were impressed by the skill evidenced by all poets, particularly for those working in brand new forms. There were winners in two prize categories.

The Silver Wild Rose is the prize for the finest poem written by a poet who had never won a previous SCA poetry competition, and is awarded to Lord Paganus Akritas for “A Lover Searches History.”, a 16th century English poem. This was his first poetry submission ever in the SCA, and it is to be hoped, certainly not his last, for this was an astounding first entry that really captures the flavor of its period of origin, with an ending as sweet as its beginning was grand.

The Golden Violet is the prize awarded to the poet demonstrating the most surpassing excellence in a troubadour form, and is awarded to Lord Ishmael Stedfast Reed for “Alone Came I”, written in the 12th century trobar clus style of troubadour poetry. This entry was a model for documentation that also serves a dual function as a mini research essay. But beyond that, it should be emphasized that the trobar clus is an astoundingly difficult verse form, and the poet executed it with an eloquence that captured the music and sense of the troubadour lyric. Further, this poem evoked a quality deep emotional resonance that period texts of the time lauded as the central quality of the best of all troubadour poetry.

Vivat to Lord Paganus Akritas and Lord Ishmael Reed, and a resounding vivat to all the poets who entered, whose work is a true joy and privilege to read.


Lord Ercole De Pavonis - What Worth Love?

Lord Ishmael Stedfast Reed - Alone Came I

Lady Jeane Kilmeny - The Dilemma

Lady Jeane Kilmeny - My First Love

Lord Jonathan Blackbow - Benevolent Ghost of What a Scadian Should Be

Lord Jonathan Blackbow - Born on A Longboat

Lord Jonathan Blackbow - Squires Paradise

Lord Jonathan Blackbow - Take A Newbie to Pennsic

Lord Paganus Akritas - A Lover Searches History

Lady Rudaba al Nihadiya - Song of the Mubid

12th Night: Catalan Court at Castell de Cardona

Sponsor: Lady Talia de Morales, Poeta Atlantiae

Submissions open until January 3rd.

Poetry Competition:

Brave Atlantia, I come before you with a call to the Jocs Floral (Floral Games), the ancient and most noble contest of the purest flower of beauty in language, the joyous science of poetry. Specifically this will be a competition awarding prizes in various categories, with the grand prize, the Violette d’Or, awarded for the demonstration of skill in troubadour poetry in the fine tradition of 13th century Cardona.


The Violeta d’Aur (Golden Violet): Awarded to the poet demonstrating the most surpassing excellence in a troubadour form.

The Souci d’Argen (Silver Marigold): Awarded to the finest poem written in a period form originating outside of Western Europe.

The Eglantina d'Argen (Silver Wild Rose): Awarded to the finest poem by a novice poet who has not previously won an SCA poetry competition. In the unlikely event that only prize winning poets enter this competition (though Atlantia’s ocean of prodigious poets is verily vast, so I will consider it as a possibility), this will be instead awarded to the finest poem written in a completely new form for the poet.

EZ Doc is perfectly fine for documentation. Entries may be submitted via email to poeta@atlantia.sca.org. Please attach a copy of your piece, your documentation, a signed release form, and the file or link to an audio or video performance, if choosing to include such. Please indicate if you are a novice poet, whether or not you have written a poem in this form before, and indicate if you would like to receive feedback on your work. Pieces will be judged using the criteria found here: Jocs Floral Judging Criteria

These are based on the Persona Pentathlon Judging Criteria for poetry, but I have changed the category weighting and criteria to better suit this competition and simplify judging, so please review for those minor changes.

Basic Guidelines for Troubadour Poetry Forms:

Refer to Appendix B of Memory and Recreation in Troubadour Lyric for a helpful reference on rhyme schemes to use in troubadour poetry. Five to six stanzas were common, as was a ten syllable line. A concluding tornade was commonly employed. The Leys d’amors, a 14th century treatise on rhetoric by Guilhem Molinier, states that the best poems evidence one or more of three vital qualities: power, knowledge, and longing.

Troubadour poem categories: canso, chanson, plainte, descort, tenso, partiment, dansa, pastorela, sirventes

Follow these links for more information on the historical Jocs Floral and its sponsoring organization, the Consistori del Gay Saber.

Helpful Links

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