Tuesday, May 24, 2011

What is this blog?

Hello everyone!

I'm Lady Aritê gunê Akasa. I'm a member of the Society for Creative Anachronism (SCA) residing in the Shire of Shadowdale in the Kingdom of Calontir. I've chosen a little-known culture for my persona- Sarmatian- and have decided to be rather serious about it. There's precious little information out there directly useful for someone who wants to recreate a Sarmatian persona without having prior experience combing academic literature or knowing some key words that filter out the junk and repeats on Google searches. There are, however, plenty of journal articles which haven't been transcribed into a medium more likely to be read by the general public.

And thus, the reason for this blog. Here, I will write down and discuss everything I learn about the Sarmatians from reading books and articles and perusing the more reputable-looking sites on the web. Unlike a lot of the sites I've found, I will be giving references whenever possible so you don't have to just take my word for it that I know what I'm talking about (and so you can go read the originals yourself, if you so desire).

 That being said, I'm not going to limit myself to only Sarmatian-related posts. It's the primary purpose  of this blog, but the secondary purpose is to discuss my overall experience in the SCA.

 So if you're interested in the Sarmatians (or even other steppe nomads), I'm making this blog for you. Given that this is the hobby of a busy grad student, I won't have an update schedule and posting will be sporadic (typically a couple times a month). I highly encourage you to subscribe to the feed,  e-mail updates, or Google Friend Connect so you don't need to check for them (or forget about this blog!). And if you know anyone who might be interested, please spread the word. If you're also a SCAdian with a Sarmatian persona, please let me know you exist! I'd love to discuss our findings with each other. :)


  1. And the above comment, Lady Aritê, is a prime example of ignorance AND stupidity. Please ignore their rude commentary, because there are those of us who find your research wonderfully informative and helpful.
    The Scholar

    1. Thanks for the support. I figured he was just a troll.

  2. The comment referenced has been deleted. I have no intention of censoring my blog, but this commenter contributed nothing to discussion, did not explain his objections, and used adult language on a blog that is not intended to be above a PG rating. If I say something inaccurate, correction is more than welcome. Trolling is not.

  3. Hi, I think that there is a scarcity of reading material about the Sarmatians (at least in English) but I find the ancient sources disparaging of the Sarmatians in general and overall bad press. Rather than being bloodthirsty raiders bent on stealing and pillaging as depicted by Roman/Greek writers they were a highly evolved society who were experts in metallurgy, animal husbandry and dog breeding, the Sarmatian Mastiff was prized for the fact it could look after herds of sheep and goats and is the ancestor of the modern day Alaunt and Molossian Mastiff and their dogs were prized by others. Horse breeding was important and Roxolani and Alans especially bred bigger breeds with Steppe ponies (which were suitable for horse archers) as the riders became heavy armoured cavalry. Thats what I like about your blog you have some interesting facts.
    Michael Kerr

  4. I too am pursuing a Samaritan /Scythian persona but having a very hard time. our reenactment group covers the 1300 to 1600ad, but my question is have you found out any pertain information on what happened to them when they moved westward in the 1000-1200 range, I know they were called something different... arghhhh... so much info and so little specifics. still have not found a difinitive answer if any of them were still around in the 1300's?

    1. Hi,
      The ones that moved far westward with the Gauls were well before your time period and assimilated into the Vandals. I don't know much about the Jasz of Hungary, but they may be related, so look into them. The people still calling themselves Alans around 1000-1100 had their kingdom in the Caucasus, not further west in Europe. Today, they're called the Ossetians.