Ælfred se leof on Art and Science

Over my time in the SCA, I've taken an interest in a miscellany of arts and sciences. I practise dancing and brewing, and I do just enough costuming, armouring and leatherwork to turn up to events with a reasonable number of accoutrements. I've also written a number of articles, mostly on the history of science, that I've collected here.

Cockatrice Articles

All of the articles listed below were originally published in Cockatrice, the arts and sciences magazine of the Kingdom of Lochac. Several have also been re-published in Stefan's Florilegium. The formatting used in the versions here is my own.

Arithmetic by Counters,Cockatrice 16 (November 2002).
An introduction to the abacus used in Europe throughout the SCA period.
Counting on the Fingers,Cockatrice 17 (January 2003).
A method of calculation on the fingers used by Bede, Fibonacci and other mediaeval mathematicians.
Ciphers,Cockatrice 19 (July 2003).
An overview of the development of cryptography over the SCA period.
That Pilgrim's Packing (with Claude Quincairnon),Cockatrice 24 (October 2004). [Florilegium]
A travel guide for SCA re-creations of Christian pilgrimages.
Flying Dragons, Cockatrice 30 (April 2006). [Florilegium]
A guide to constructing mediaeval European kites.
The World: Just How Big Is It?, Cockatrice January AS 47 (2013).
Classical and mediaeval attempts to calculate the size of the Earth.
Don't Try This At Home: Curious Adventures in Mediaeval Science and Technology, Cockatrice May AS 49 (2014). [Florilegium]
A collection of dangerous, gruesome and unethical experiments from Antiquity and the Middle Ages.
In Search of Spices and Christians: Europeans in Southeast Asia 1511-1606, Cockatrice August AS 51 (2016).
An overview of European activity in south-east Asia during the SCA period.
From East to West, Cockatrice August AS 52 (2017). [Florilegium]
A companion to In Search of Spices and Christians, investigating Asian travel to Europe.

The Brewery

Brewing isn't just about mediaeval re-creation. For patient people, brewing is a great way of making, er, interesting drinks and is a good skill for any modern imbiber of alcohol to have. It's not really any more difficult than baking a cake, though it requires greater patience.

Sure, you can go down the supermarket, buy some beer concentrate, add water and ferment, but that's no fun, is it?

Below are some of my more successful recipes, drawn from various sources. Enjoy!

Ælfred at the tavern
Brewing Basics
All of the other recipes assume that the brewer is familiar with some basic brewing techniques and knowledge summarised here.
Digby's Ale with Honey
A strong blend of ale and honey.
Plat's Braggot
An ale flavoured with honey and spices.
Ginger beer
The most popular (but least period) drink in my repertoire.
Partridge's Hippocras
An easy and popular spiced wine.
Lady Bellassises' Mead
A raisin mead spiced with cardamom.
Fruit Mead
A mead flavoured with cherries or raspberries.