From Compendum Caidis
Jump to navigationJump to search
The Orkneys and Sir Yaroslav at Angels' Melee
Founded: 1991
Status: Active
The Orkney Warband

The Orkneys are a warband in the kingdom of Caid and more specifically located in the barony of Calafia. The 'mundane' real map position would be in the San Diego, California, USA area.

The Orkneys are a Dark Ages "Special Forces" unit. They pride themselves on their egalitarian republic of highly skilled warriors. Not your typical master-servant relationship as some of the other warbands and households throughout the "Known World". They don't do a lot of the annoying off the field bossing you around type-stuff. They want everyone to have the freedom to go out & explore the SCA and have fun doing it. Party like a rock-star or sit by the fire and get mellow - nobody cares. Whatever turns you on. Just so long as you're not stopping others from having a good time. It's all about the fight for them.

Why the Dark Ages? Cause they can't pin anything down exactingly. Many of them fight in Greco-Roman armour, but most, if not all, fight with scutums (tower shields) and short swords, or spears. They're a unit of opportunity, small (12-20) but decisive in their attack. Their superior training, movement, weapons and armour make them a formidable foe.


Founded in 1991 the Orkney Warband is a fighting unit within the Society for Creative Anachronism, an organization dedicated to Medieval Recreation. Since its inception the warriors of this unit have strived to become the best War Fighters in the SCA, as individuals and as a group. Team work has been essential to our success and our reputation has spread around the world.

Within the Society for Creative Anachronism many groups strive to be the best at many things; cooking, camping, costuming, dancing, etc... The Orkneys have chosen War Fighting to be the discipline in which we excel. The Orkneys chose to base our warfare concept after the greatest Infantry units of the ancient world: the Romans. Using their trademark Large Shield (Scutum), Short Swords, and Spears, the Orkneys now set to the task of perfecting once again the Art of War.

The founding members of the Orkneys split away from Corvus, another War Band in the Kingdom of Caid, to concentrate solely on the art of war. The original members, George, Brand, Dirk, and Jed were nicknamed the Orkney Lot by Count Balin of Tor, who was the commander of the armies of Caid. Their ferocity and valor reminded him of the four brother knights of King Arthur, Aggravain, Gawain, Gareth, and Mordred, who hailed from the Orkney Isles. Thus the Orkney name came into being and followed the new unit to war.

Many changes have come to The Orkneys in the last decade. Having fallen off in previous years, Count Sir Brand Armand of Lancaster took control of the warband as dominus once again, helping to rebuild it with his son, Tyr of Lancaster.




  • (VACANT)

Heroes of Orkney

  • XXXIX - Tyr “The Swedish Murder-Machine” of Lancaster
  • XVII - Brock Sampson

On Crusade

  • (VACANT)

Auxiliaries (FNGs)

  • Björn of Orkney
  • Violet of Orkney
  • Freman Stormont
  • Freman Beeston
  • Freman Ælfhere
  • Daði Fríman
  • Miles Lichtenberg

Retired Heroes

Fallen Heroes

Traditions and Myths

The Orkney Pizza Feast The Orkney Pizza Feast originated in the Corvus Warband where the Orkney brothers resided at the time. They would gather alone, sometimes with a few other friends from Corvus after battle to feast on pizza in one of the Orkney member’s tents. This tradition has carried on to the present day, where Orkneys and Myrmidons gather in their shared camp on Saturday nights to feast together on the fine Italian cuisine, and tell stories.

Orkney Commando Missions

A somewhat new tradition. Auxiliaries (FNGs) are sent by members of the Orkney warband to find and bring back items of their sponsor’s asking, be it booze, food, clothing, a rival warband’s flag, a chair, etc.

Counting Coup

An old Orkney tradition which involves capturing a rival household/warband’s flag and/or banner. This tradition is a nod to when Native Americans would catch their enemies by surprise and simply touch them instead of killing them to show that they could’ve taken their lives, but instead showed mercy. This is done to send a message to rival groups and friendlies alike to stay on their toes and to show the boldness of the Orkney Warband, and that they are not to be trifled with.

The Gauntlet

The Gauntlet is an initiation ritual in the Orkney Warband in which an Auxiliary, when ready to join the Orkneys, will fight every attending Orkney member in single combat in rapid succession. If the Auxiliary is bested in one of these fights, an Orkney member can either approve them, in which they will go on and fight the next member, or shoot them down, in which case they have failed the gauntlet and are not yet ready to become a member. If the Auxiliary wins his fight, he will move onto his next opponent, and repeat the process until he has cleared every attending Orkney member.


In the past, once Orkney Auxiliaries completed their Gauntlet, they were given a roman numeral as a badge of honor. Every new member was given a number in succession to the previous initiate who passed The Gauntlet to keep things organized. However, as time went on many Orkneys began to use their numbers as a rank and status within the warband, treating those with higher numbers than them as lessers. Once Count Sir Brand took control of the Orkneys for the second time as Dominus in 2022, he discontinued the tradition of numbers, believing that a fighter’s superiority and status should come from their fighting capabilities, and not a numeral. The Orkney numbers are no longer a formally recognized tradition of the Orkney Warband, and are now used to keep the wiki page organized.

Bard Crucifixion

The savageness of the Orkneys is shared with everyone, including wandering bards who happen into their camp. If a bard were to enter the Orkney camp, they would be met with two options. If they choose to stay and perform their music, and it was not to the liking of the Orkneys, they would be duct taped to a post or a tree. The other option is to simply leave the camp unscathed and find a new place of performance. Unfortunately for these musicians, the Orkneys have high standards. The only bard to perform and not be crucified within the Orkney camp was Duke Guy of Castle Kirk, who was allowed to perform without threat of crucifixion by Count Sir Brand of Lancaster. When questioned on this decision, Brand simply replied: “He will kill you all.”

The God Emperor of Mankind

The God Emperor of Mankind is the chief god of the Orkneys, followed by Anubis and Mithras. He sees all, and the Orkneys are the ambassadors of his will on and off the battlefield. Other notable followers of the God Emperor of Mankind are select members of the Myrmidons household. While the Orkneys are said to have no war-cry, many members can be heard calling out “For the Emperor!” in charges or situations where they are outnumbered. Devout followers of the God Emperor may be seen greeting each other by making the shape of a double headed eagle with their hands.

Anubis, The God of Mischief, and Mithras, the God of Warriors

Anubis is the Orkney God of Mischief. This myth began when the Orkneys got their hands on a Piñata head at a Great Western War hay bale party, and thought it looked similar to Anubis. A drunken Dirk and several other Orkneys paraded around with the head, singing the praises of Anubis and his mischief. This was met in response by Brand, and some other Orkneys who began their own cult of Mithras, the God of Warriors, who had their own puppet. These two ‘cults’ had an internalized feud with one another, which eventually led to Dirk tossing the Mithras puppet into a fire. These two cults carry on today, with newer member Tyr heading the cult of Anubis with FNGs he brought into the ranks of the Orkney Auxiliaries, and Count Brand, though silent about it, still following the cult of Mithras.

Aku, The Arch-Demon of Alcohol

Those who drink too much and indulge in one too many cups are met by the Arch-Demon, Aku, who damns these individuals to a night of ail-ment and a morning of headaches. It is said that once Aku has set his sights on you, there is no winning in battle against him.