Historical overview of Eoforwic meetings
Meetings of the Canton of Eoforwic have been held since the days of Finnvarr de Taahe at the downtown campus of the University of Toronto. Traditionally these have been held at the International Students Centre (ISC) at 33 Harbord Avenue, also known as Cumberland House after its first owner, though around 2006 space conflicts caused meetings to relocate occasionally.
Meetings traditionally trace four distinct phases. Since the election of the first Lord Mayor, there is a fifth phase to each meeting. These phases are:
- Business and officers' reports;
- the Lord Mayor's remarks;
- the chaos;
- the "meeting"; and
Business and officers' reports
At the opening of each meeting, the Pursuivant of Eoforwic gets everyone's attention with a ringing "Oyez!" The Seneschal of the Canton then runs over the evening's agenda and passes along any important information, including a calendar of imminent events.
Once the Seneschal's business is completed, all other officers are invited to make any announcements. Marshals will announce fight, rapier or archery practices and locations. The Chatelaine will greet new members. The Exchequer will make any relevant announcements; and so on.
This usually is the "official" part of the evening, and includes any business necessary to the operation of the Canton within the corporate framework of SCA Inc.
Once officers' announcements are completed, the Seneschal will invite any other Eoforings to make personal announcements. Once these announcements (if any) are completed, the Lord Mayor may be pleased to speak.
The Lord Mayor's remarks
If the Lord Mayor needs to speak to the populace, he or she will begin, "Good evening, Eoforwic." All present will reply, "Good evening, Your Worship."
The Lord Mayor then will make any remarks necessary for the governance of the Royal City. The Sheriff or other civic officials also may speak.
Once all business is completed, the Seneschal will announce a few minutes of chaos. This is one of the oldest of Eoforwic traditions. This is when people:
- meet and greet latecomers;
- buy lottery tickets, feast reservations or anything else on offer;
- pick up documents being circulated; and
- do anything else that needs to be done.
And to be honest, it's when some folks sneak out to miss the meeting.
After the chaos, the Seneschal will announce that the meeting per se will begin. Traditionally, the "meeting" is either:
- a formal presentation or seminar on a topic of interest;
- a dance practice;
- a bardic circle (customary around Hallowe'en especially);
- a structured business meeting (e.g. to organize and run an upcoming event or discuss and vote on a slate of expenditures of Canton or City funds); or
- some other interesting or entertaining activity that takes 60-90 minutes.
The presentation can be a how-to session on a medieval art or science. It can be a more formal style of seminar.
Once the meeting is over and the site is returned to its original configuration (the ISC particularly likes its furniture returned to its previous arrangement) all present retire until next week. Many retire to a local pub for food, drink, fellowship and energetic discussion on a number of topics.
During the school year, Eoforwic meetings are held on Tuesday nights. Business starts at 7:30 p.m. and the chaos is over by 8:00. The meeting wraps up by 9:30.
Durung the university's summer break, meetings change from Tuesday to Wednesday nights and, if weather permits, meetings may be held on the front lawn of Cumberland House. Timings do not change during the summer.
Please check the Eoforwic web site for details of timings, locations and meeting topics.