Godfrey Spelman of Hexham

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Godfrey Spelman.jpg
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Information
Resides: Naevehjem
Status: Active
Awards: Visit the Caid Order of Precedence
Heraldry
GodfreyHeraldry.PNG
Per chevron gules and Or, two bees and a rose proper.

Lord Godfrey attended his first SCA event at the Barony of Naevehjem's Frost Dragon Anniversary and became enamored with what the SCA was and what it provided to him; however mundane life prevented him from being fully immersed for about a year or two. When he returned; however, he jumped in with both feet and began integrating into his new home by assisting as deputy Chatelaine. After a year of service, Godfrey received his Award of Arms on 11/11/2017 from TRM Alexander and Tahira and was elevated to the Office of the Chatelaine for the Barony of Naevehjem that same day. After some time learning and studying the SCA, he found his passions and began devoting his time and energy to heraldry and scroll work and finding means to improve these skills wherever he saw lacking. He began working closely with Baroness Eridana Ambra Dragotta, Dolphin Herald on the heraldic process, understanding the rules of heraldry submissions, and was taken under her tutelage and as her deputy for submissions. On 10/13/2018 he was offered and then accepted to be a protege to Master James of the Lake to pursue the virtues, dedication, and hard work of the Order of the Pelican and learn from him the resources of name heraldry. On 6/29/2019, he was offered and then accepted to be an apprentice to Mistress Caitlin Christiana Wintour to pursue the skills, dedication, and determination of the Order of the Laurel and learn from her the particular art of literary works and performance.

Persona

Born in Hexham, England to a Protestant cleric and heathen mother, Godfrey endured many hardships but excelled greatly in learning new things; making him a very proactive scholar and researcher primarily in the fields of writing, medicine, and history. To protect him during the political and religious turmoil of Queen Mary restoring Catholicism to England, Godfrey was offered to the Benedictine Monastery of Hexham Abbey in 1545 where he studied, worked, and prayed under the monastics to not only grow in his passion for learning, reading and writing, but to also be shielded under the facade of being an ally of the Papists. Under the tutelage of one of the senior monks of the Order, Godfrey grew from his postulancy and novitiate; eventually taking solemn vows and pursuing holy orders as a cleric. It was during this time that he delved into apothecary medicine and herbology due to his discovery of the works of Hildegard von Bingen; studying what she wrote and taught; practicing in the monastery nursery late at night to carry on such knowledge and applying them in the infirmary of the abbey. Due to his work, he was made the overseer of the infirmary and charged over the monastery herbularias (medicine garden).

In September of 1557, one month before his ordination to the priesthood, Godfrey received word that his father was executed for his proclaimed Protestant beliefs and vocal preaching during the Protestant Persecutions. While this greatly affected him, he learned through his years that discretion is key and sometimes boastful proclamation does no good for others in the end. After his ordination and continued work in the infirmary in addition to his clerical duties, Godfrey was made Dean of the Abbey and then elected as abbot by the community no more than a year after that. As abbot, he worked to restructure the monastery to be more productive in the means of research, recording newfound knowledge and discoveries, and improving the monastery gardens and grounds to not only provide food for the community but extra abundance to give out to the poor and desolate. While meeting with some pushback from some of the elders of the community, Godfrey sought to have this order be functioning and useful; not just focused on prayer and quiet contemplation.

In 1559, when Elizabeth is crowned Queen of England, the angst of the religious turmoil that occurred seemed to finally come to an end. But not so for the abbey and those who claimed fidelity to Rome. When Elizabeth and Parliament passed the Acts of Uniformity and Supremacy in 1559, and forced to make a decision, Godfrey denounced the Church of Rome and claimed that the monastic community would claim fidelity to the Church of England and to the legitimacy of Elizabeth. Infuriated by his heresy and unfaithfulness to the One True Church, the monastic leaders denounced Godfrey as their leader and removed him from the community. He and his followers (mainly the newly professed or the novices) followed him and left the abbey and its community to their fates (which in the end, all there were condemned and executed and the abbey closed).

Having been expelled from the abbey along with those who professed fidelity to the Church of England, Godfrey found himself under the patronage of William Cecil and worked as apothecary, chaplain, and his chief secretary while Cecil served as Secretary of State. It was during this time that he gained the acquaintance and fellowship of Francis Walsingham and would later work as his chief secretary when Walsingham became Her Majesty’s new Secretary of State. During his time of work, witchcraft was deemed a capital offense in 1562 and wrote to his mother to ensure she carry her practices in secret and to preferably move into the forested regions of the country to remain safe and undetected; trying to spare her of the same fate his father endured. Unfortunately, his mother refused and was eventually discovered, tried, and executed for practicing witchcraft. This angered Godfrey for having now lost both parents as well as subjugating him to a series of investigations to see if he was guilty of the same crime due to affiliation; nearly losing his position and station in Elizabeth’s Court. But nonetheless, he persevered and managed through it; growing stronger and wiser in the intellectual game of man.

Working with and under Walsingham trained Godfrey’s ability for politics and to play the courts to the advantage of his teacher and Her Majesty; especially in trade deals and international affairs. When times were dark and assassination plots were being taken against Elizabeth, Godfrey was charged in hiring mercenaries to intercept such plots and plans; to discover who the enemy was (by whatever means necessary) and it was here that he made the acquaintance of a notable French legionnaire by the name of Sauvage le brigand; an unlikely companionship considering France was not much in assisting against the threats of Spain. However, working side by side for the benefit of England as well as the intrigue of adventure, gaining new knowledge, and receiving spoils atop of payment, Godfrey and Sauvage became powerful partners and allies and sought to make history for themselves and the world that they were living in. Abandoning his post and gathering his goods, Godfrey embarked with Sauvage and came into the service of a warrior legion known as the Horsemen of Judgment Keep, a rogue army that had been reputed to have been around during the Great Battle of Agincourt; fearsome and legendary beyond compare; a myth that he now came to see was a reality. Offering his services as chaplain, scholar, and apothecary, Godfrey sought to make a legacy for himself and for those whom he took under his tutelage. He came to accept and believe that there was nothing he couldn’t do.

Associates

Guilds

  • Caid Arachne's Web Guild
  • Herbology and Alchemy Guild of Caid

Offices & Positions

Kingdom

Baronial

  • Territorial Herald - Barony of Naevehjem - 10/01/2018 to present
  • Territorial Chatelaine - Barony of Naevehjem 11/11/2017 to 11/09/2019
  • Co-Chamberlain to Baron and Baroness Llewellyn and Eularia - 11/10/2018 to present
  • Deputy Territorial Herald - Barony of Naevehjem 06/2018 to 10/01/2018
  • Deputy Territorial Chatelaine - 02/01/2017 to 11/11/2017

Event Staff

  • Autocrat for Naevehjem October Faire Demo - 10/18/2019 - 10/20/2019
  • Heraldry Consultation - GWW 2019
  • Ran Herald's Point - Festival of the Rose - 8/24/2019
  • Heraldry Consultation - Potrero 2019
  • Autocrat - Naevehjem Frost Dragon Anniversary, 11/10/2018
  • Heraldry Consultation - Calafia Anniversary 2018
  • Autocrat for Naevehjem October Faire Demo - 10/12/2018 - 10/14/2018
  • Heraldry Consultation - GWW 2018
  • Chief Lord in Waiting for Tsyra I - Wintermist Anniversary- 05/19/2018
  • Heraldry Consultation - GWW 2017

Workshops Taught

Kingdom of Caid

  • "Heraldry 101 - Submitting a Name and Device as a Submitter or as a New Herald" - GWW 2019

Barony of Naevehjem

  • Who's Who in the SCA: Knowing Officers, Titles, and People of Rank
  • What are the Kingdom Awards?
  • How to Submit Kingdom and Baronial Awards
  • Field Heraldry 101
  • Roles and Relationships of a Consort and Champion
  • SCA Camping 101 for Wars and Weekend Events
  • The Dos and Don'ts of Court: Etiquette, Procession and Presentation, and How to Survive

Miscellany

Barony of Naevehjem

  • Dragon's Wing (Service) 11/11/2017
  • Dragon's Blaze (Baronial Recognition of Excellence) 11/10/2018

Barony of Wintermist

  • Gillyflower (service) 5/18/2019

Kingdom of Caid

  • Harp Argent (illumination/scroll work) 7/13/2019
  • Award of Arms 11/10/2018
  • Signum Regina (Tsyra I) 06/23/2018

Blog of Godfrey's Poetic and Other Literary Works

Projects and Publications

Promissories

Image Promissory
Acorn (Wilhelm III and Tsyra II).jpeg Acorn
Arcus (Wilhelm III and Tsyra II).jpeg Arcus
AoA (Wilhelm III and Tsyra II).jpeg AoA
Court Barony (Wilhelm III and Tsyra II).jpeg Court Barony
Crescent (Wilhelm III and Tsyra II).jpeg Crescent
Crescent Sword (Wilhelm III and Tsyra II).jpeg Crescent Sword
Dolphin (Wilhelm III and Tsyra II).jpeg Dolphin of Caid
Duellist (Wilhelm III and Tsyra II).jpeg Duellist
Furison (Wilhelm III and Tsyra II).jpeg Furison
Gauntlet (Wilhelm III and Tsyra II).jpeg Gauntlet
Harp-Prom.png Harp Argent
LoC-Prom.png Legion of Courtesy
Lux Caidis (Wilhelm III and Tsyra II).jpeg Lux Caidis
Peerage - Chivalry (Wilhelm III and Tsyra II).jpeg Order of the Chivalry
RRoE (Wilhelm III and Tsyra II).jpeg Royal Recognition of Excellence

Photos