Iron Ring

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The Iron Ring is a symbol of prowess (and only prowess) in rapier fighting, there is only one in the Middle Kingdom, and the only way to acquire it is to challenge the current ring bearer. The format of the challenge is fixed and shall be strictly followed to insure this does not alter from its original intent.


The Challenge of the Iron Ring

  • To declare the challenge the challenger declares 'I request the Challenge of the Iron Ring'.
  • The proper responses are 'I accept your challenge' or 'I am forbidden from accepting your challenge'.
  • The fight for the Iron Ring shall always be best 3 out of 5 fights to allow for the occasional lucky shot.
  • The Iron Ring may only exchange ring bearer's once in any given day. If another challenger requests a challenge to the existing or new ring bearer, the ring bearer is required to respond 'I am forbidden from accepting your challenge'.
  • However, an existing ring bearer may accept up to three Challenges in a given day, assuming the ring bearer is the victor of each preceding Challenge that day. Only the first Challenge is the ring bearer required to fight, the second and third are optional and should only be fought if the ring bearer thinks they can show as much prowess and stamina in the later two Challenges as the first
  • A challenger may only Challenge for the Iron Ring once in a given day.
  • The 'challenge' can only be made while both participants are fully in dress rapier armor (non period practice armor is not acceptable) and there is still opportunity to fight that day.
  • The 'challenge' must be (reasonably) met before said rapier armor is removed or the ring bearer forfeits his right to the ring to the challenger. (reasonably means use common sense here, if it is not possible because of unforeseen acts of god leave it at that)
  • Since the ring bearer must choose the appropriate time, it is always the challengers right to choice of weapons. However the weapons must include a rapier (case of dagger is excluded, this is rapier prowess recognition).
  • The challenge must meet Midrealm rules of tournament combat. (including no rubber band guns)
  • The ring may not leave Midrealm residence, it will revert to the previous ring bearer if the existing ring bearer moves from kingdom(s) or stops playing.
  • The Iron Ring shall be worn prominently while in period armor so potential challengers may know who is the current ring bearer (my recommendation is wrap the chain around your belt and wear it as a favor).
  • Lastly, it is the duty of the outgoing ring bearer to make sure the incoming ring bearer is fully aware of these rules.

History of how the Challenge of the Iron Ring was created

The story behind why I started the Challenge of the Iron Ring is...

A couple of years ago (long before I became the Baron of Nordskogen), I was having a conversation with Master Warder Alexander de Seton at an event in the Midlands regarding there not being enough emphasis on just prowess in rapier. It was always expected to be there, but many tournaments, awards, and overall character assessments incorporated the entire aspects of a courtier (honor, courtly graces, chivalry, teaching, etc). All this being very good, but I felt that recognizing and rewarding ability was almost to the point of getting ignored.

Master Alexander suggested that if saw this as a gap in the rapier community that I should think of a way to help solve it (in other words put my money where my mouth was :). That day he was giving out hematite rings to those people who he had had good fights with as a token, he gave one to me as said maybe this will spark some ideas.

Well it did, on the way back from the event I figured out the entire rules for the Challenge of the Iron Ring. That very night I posted the Challenge of the Iron Ring on the rapier lists and by morning Warder Uadahlrich emailed me. He had also received a hematite ring from Master Alexander and being from completely on the other side of the Middle Kingdom, he thought 1 Iron Ring for all of the Midrealm including Northshield would not be enough to provide the opportunity for many to Challenge for it. He asked my permission to start the Southern Iron Ring. So the very first Iron Rings were the two hematite rings given out by Master Alexander de Seton. (Unfortunately hematite is brittle and did not fair so well when struck by a rapier, so now the rings truly are Iron Rings.)

And as it sits now there is a Northshield Iron Ring (former Northern Ring), a Midrealm Iron Ring (former Southern Ring, as it will remain within the new Midrealm borders drawn in October), an East Kingdom Iron Ring, a Meridies Iron Ring, and there may be Iron Rings of Ealdormere and the Principality of Gleann Abhann already or very soon.

So now, I say to any of you, if you feel that prowess or ability is not properly emphasized in any of the martial or non-martial communities that you are a part of, you should think of a way to solve it. :)

Yours in Service,

Rodrigo, sometimes goof."

Culture of the Iron Ring

The person who has the Iron Ring is called "The Ring Bearer".

It is very common for those who have had Iron the Ring to call each other by the informal title of "Ring Sister" and "Ring Brother" as appropriate.

Oftentimes those who have won the Iron Ring will sign the book with their name and Ring Bearer X (how many times they have had that Iron Ring)

Sometimes people choose to not allow challenges at practice. This goes against the intent of its creator (Master Rodrigo de Montoya) and the rules of the Iron Ring. It is there to be challenged for whenever the bearer is in armor.

It is considered very good form for the Ring Bearer to let others know when they will be in armor and where they will be so they can be challenged. This can be done on various e-lists.

External Links

Yahoo! Group" IronRing

Facebook Group: Iron Ring of the Midrealm

Reference Links

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