The full blazon for this Achievement of Arms, along with the symbolism behind it, is at the bottom of this page.
The Most Noble Order of the Rouse Clan is a family friendly troop of reenactors of the late
13th and early 14thC. We are currently a small group comprised of family and friends but we are seeking new faces and the people that wear them. We seek those to which Chivalry is a goal, not a vocabulary word; but we do so with the understanding that as with all lofty goals, we are all on different stages of the journey. So if you are interested in a life of service to high ideals, learning the martial arts of the era and region, performing demonstrations of song and dance, dressing up and becoming someone new (or olde), and having a blast while doing it, get in touch by following the link to the side. We're based in North Baltimore Ohio, and if you interested in visiting drop us a line and we will arrange a good time for both the Order and you to sit in on a meeting.
The Most noble Order of the Rouse Clan has an interesting history. One unlike many of the reenactment troops and organizations you will find. We have here divided it into two sections, one centered in the here and now "Fact", and the other based in the fictitious lands of Northfeld "Fiction"
We hope you enjoy.
In the small village of North Baltimore Ohio, a group of cousins grew up beating each other up like young boys are prone to do. As they got older their interest lead into the study of the martial arts. Two of them "Didymous" and "Wulfscyld", began to specialize in the European forms of the middle ages in their teens. With this specialization came the gathering and making of equipment, and the study of the cultures and history of the various areas in the time period.
By 2002 they had the gear and knowledge to begin reenactments, but they didn't fit within the established groups in the area (which were few and far between). So the two just basically fought with small groups gathering to watch.
One day being "bored in Baltimore", they decided to visit the Woodland Mall in the near-by town of Bowling Green Ohio, but they decided to do so in armor. The reaction was so good that they felt they had to do it again, but with more people. However finding those that have both, the sense of humor for such and the gear was something that wouldn't come until later.
In February of 2005 they were asked to put on a dinner theater for the North Baltimore Salvation Army. They recruited "Bartholomew", one of their cousins who fought with them back in the day. After many fights and an odd broken shield, "Bartholomew" became "Sir Bartholomew", and all was done for a sold out event. The first event of the cousins who called themselves "the Knights of the Roose Clan" (Adopting the name of their shared heritage.)
Costumes were provided for many of the congregation and even the officers; one of whom took special interest. After the event he asked about joining in the fun. So the "Detrich" comes into the picture.
"Bartholomew" left the group to pursue his own dreams, but "Didymous'" step-dad and long-time supportive influence in his eccentricity, starts to think that what they are doing seems "like a blast" and puts together some gear. Hence the birth of "John".
The four decide to gear up and in January 2006, and hit Findlay Ohio with all the vigor they can muster and have an awesome time doing it.
The following year they do it again, but now they have a new name, "The Knights of the Rouse Clan", now preferring the ancient spelling of the name. It is in January of 2007 that they loosely organize and begin to bring in others.
The requirements are simple and carry over into the current by-laws. Age 16+ for full membership, 8+ for junior membership, a sustained persona, and "parading" as the garb-in-public trips came to be known. (named after a term used in the Beatles film "Hard Days Night".)
Many have come and gone, more have stayed. Our Ideals became higher, and our sense of direction has become more acute, but the fun loving nature of the group lives on.
We are The Most Noble Order of the Rouse Clan.
Sir Didymous the young Viscount of Northfeld arrives in Spain where he befriends Sir John Karloff II. The two build a free company of knights and travel to the Lithuainian crusades against the Balts under the hire of an alliance of nobles.
While there Sir Didymous fights and defeats Wulfscyld, a Baltic warrior. However he is so impressed with his skill that instead of killing him, he converts him and Wulfscyld becomes a knight at his hand.
While there Sir John and Didymous receive the blessing of the Rouse clan for their chivalrous and charitable conduct.
On their way to Sir Didymous' home of Northfeld England, they stay at the home of Lord Detrich Von Stien, the Archduke of Marienburg, and head of the alliance that hired them.
Detrich travels with them to England to build relations with the nobility there.
Once they arrive in Northfeld in January of 1295, the four decide to establish an order of chivalry dedicated to the example of Saint Michael the Archangle and Saint George the Great. The Most Noble Order of the Rouse Clan is born.
Yes, we are aware of how short and vague this history is, and the fact is that if you want all of the gritty details you'll have to read the stories of the four founding members that are mentioned above. If you go that far, you might as well go all of the way. After all, you'll be invested by that point, and heck, it's an interesting read.
The Creed of the Most Noble Order of the Rouse Clan was consieved as a way for the members there of to state plainly and consisly our belief in the One True God in three persons, who IS love; and to establish His supiriority over all man kind.
The text reads:
"Ye Creed of the Order of the Rouse Clan.
I believe in the Holy Trinity...
God Elohim, the Ever Lasting Father.
God Christ Jesus, our Resurected Redeemer and Intercesor. God the Holy Spirit, who is as both, Fire and Water, Ethirial yet Concrete.
Triquetra, the Eternal Love.
Quom viresium mortales defecit, Deus Vincet.
The Latin portion of the Creed is the motto of the Order. It is Latin and translates to "When the strength of mortals fails, God Conquers."
Arms: Vairy of Argent and Or, a Bordure Sable, and a Jerusalem Cross Gules.
Crest: From a wreath of colours Or and Gules, a Demi-lance entwined by serpent all Proper bearing a forked pennant Or charged with a Jerusalem Cross Gules.
Supports: Saint Michael the Archangel armored and armed with a Falchion and poised for combat, and Saint George the Great armored and bearing a sword standing at ease, all Proper.
Compartment: A Rock Proper.
Motto: Quom Viresium Mortlaes Defecit, Deus Vincet.
The Order of the Rouse Clan has many symbols of great significance to us. The foremost is our arms. The shield is made of four colors; in non-heraldic terms they are: Yellow, White, Red, and Black. Yellow, as the heraldic equivalent to gold, is representative of the nobility of our ideals, White is for the purity of our intent. Red is a two-fold symbol for both; the Blood of Christ which alone can bring Salvation from sin, and the courage needed to live a Chivalrous life. Black is also two fold and represents dying to ourselves and the solemnity of our vows.
The pattern that makes the background of the shield is called "Vair" and represents squirrel pelts that were once a sign of hunting prowess. They have come to represent prowess in general; the idea that there is no task so big as to not undertake it, and no task beneath us.
The Border of the shield is to remind us that once the vows have been taken, we must put them on daily. They are as much a part of our daily life as clothing.
The Jerusalem cross has been ascribed many meanings over time. For us, the big cross represents ourselves as individuals, and the small crosses are others; those close to us. It reminds us that in order to change the world, we must start with ourselves. We are a part of society and once we have changed in ourselves, our example, not just our preaching, can bring change in others. There are four small crosses, to show how our cause can spread to the four corners of the Earth.
The crest is a lance with a flag (whose symbolism is a kin to that of the shield) entwined about by a serpent. The lance is a symbol of war to remind us of the spiritual warfare around us. The snake is a reference to two passages of scripture: Numbers 21: 7-9, and John 3: 14.
The base on which the shield rests is a rock, symbolic of God as mentioned in the Psalms and in the parables of Christ. Our supports are the Patron Saints of our Order: Michael the Archangel and George the Great. The Captain of God's Army, and a warrior who died for the faith. Their positions reflect the motto of the Order.
Our motto when translated is "When the strength of mortals fails, God conquers."