Friday, May 16, 2008
The Thing, or Thing-Fair, is esentially a large tournament and fair in Torvaldsland. The men may participate in a wide variety of contests and can win talmits. A talmit is a headband and they are not always just prizes. Talmits may also signify different districts, officers and Jarls. They may be made from a variety of materials such as the skin of a sea sleen. Men often bring their slaves to the Thing. Merchants and men of other castes from cities south of Torvaldsland may also attend the Thing. Combat is prohibited at the Thing but men can still carry their weapons. This prohibition does not extend to duels. It also enables outlaws to attend. Each free man of Torvaldsland must attend the Thing unless they are a farmer who works his farm alone. Each of the men who attends must present to the Jarl hosting the Thing a helmet, shield and either sword, ax or spear in good condition. Each man must maintain his own weapons. The only exception is mercenaries who are in the direct hire of the Jarl. In that case, the Jarl supplies their weapons. Even those who cannot attend the Thing must still maintain their own weapons and present them at least once a year to the Jarl.
Some of the contests at the Thing include swimming, archery, singing, poetry composition, wrestling and rhyming games. They also must climb the mast, a fifty-foot tall pole of needle wood. There is a broad jump on level land and a walk of the "oar" that is actually just a long pole. There is spear throwing for distance and accuracy. Riddle guessing is popular. One such riddle in the books was "What is black, has eighty legs and eats gold?" The correct answer is the Black Sleen, the ship of Thorgard of Scagnar. There is even a rough bat and ball game. In this game, there are two men on each side. The object of the game is to keep the ball away from the other team. No player can hold the ball for more than a referee's count of twenty. The player can throw it over his head and try to catch it himself. He can also throw the ball to his teammate or hit it to him with the bat. The bats are made of heavy wood and the ball is wooden as well. Being struck by a bat or the ball can be painful and injuries are common. There are even beauty contests for bond-maids.
(taken from a notecard created by Reis Kurka)
There is currently one being held at Heimdal and will be held 15th throught the 18th
They will be holding various tournaments durings thes days
for more information click here