Results of Certamen

Certamen has become increasingly common in recent years, as the Magi have used it to resolve disputes both signifiicant and trivial. Some members of the covenant now feel that it has gone too far, with every debate of note ending in multiple challenges. We shall see whether this moderating influence has any effect, or whether Certamen continues to be a regular event.
Stacks Image 5565

Overall standings for all contests (current members only)

Stacks Image 5184


Autumn 1083

Exasperated by Petrus' apparent unwillingness to forget or forgive the destruction of the covenant's set of tomes on Faerie Lore, Jean decided to silence him once and for all. Unfortunately, it didn't quite go to plan, and Jean was carried unconscious from the room.

Spring 1084

When Ruaridh and Jean rejected Darius' demand that the covenant hand over a tithe of vis in advance of the funds due from Solis Castle, Darius challenged them to Certamen. Rather than back down, Ruaridh rashly accepted, though he hardly expected to win. The battle lasted only a few moments, and Darius took his prize.

Winter 1084

An argument errupted amongst the Magi over whether vis from the body of a slain demon should be added to the covenant's stores or discarded. Jean and Petrus saw no problem with keeping it, quoting the Peripheral Code to support their claim, but Idris and Ruaridh were reluctant to take any risks. To break the impasse, Ruaridh goaded Jean into challenging Certamen, defeating the Tremere without apparent effort. The vis remained uncollected.

Summer 1085

Jean flew into a rage when he discovered that Idris had indirectly aided the Welsh rebellion of 1081, especially since he had not mentioned his actions when he had applied for membership of the covenant. He won the resulting Certamen, benefitting from Idris' ignorance of Hermetic traditions. Note: this Certamen took place in private, and Ruaridh and Petrus are not aware of it.

Autumn 1088

While in Gloucester, Ruaridh heard rumours than Jean, who was widely regarded by townsfolk as a sorceror, was somehow involved in the mysterious death of a local priest. Ruaridh questioned Jean at council about the incident, and Jean denied any knowledge of the affair. Ruaridh declared that he didn't believe Jean's prostestations of innocence, and Petrus suggested that he cast Frosty Breath of the Spoken Lie on the Tremere. Jean rejected this 'insult to his dignity' and, somewhat reluctantly, Ruaridh challenged him to Certamen over the matter, which he won. The spell was cast, no smoke appeared when Jean repeated his denials and Ruaridh apologised for his 'mistake'. Subsequently, after Jean's death, Ruaridh was proved right all along....

Spring 1101

While journeying through France, on the way to his house meeting, Turold and his two companions came to a faerie glade. Pendaran and Gareth had been caught in the revels of the fae, slowly being transformed into a statue, and a being of air, respectively. In his attempt to stop the transformation Turold attacked the glade by picking the mushrooms, which contained vis, that lay all around. While this stopped the revels, it did not free his companions. As he thought what to do a woman approached and accused Turold of vis theft. Before he had a chance to explain his actions, she challenged him to certamen, and swiftly defeated him. Turold later learned that she was a maga of Harco covenant, and incurred a vis obligation to that place.

Autumn 1109

Lothar's pater Adolphus, who had declared wizards war against his former apprentice, entered the covenant in search of him. Meeting Antonius he demanded to know where Lothar could be found. Antonius declared that he knew where Lothar was headed but refused to reveal any more so Adolphus challenged him. After one round Antonius realised that he was overmatched and withdrew from the challenge before informing Adolphus that Lothar had headed into the faerie regio.

Autumn 1118

After a number of heated arguments between Lothar and Ruaridh it was only a matter of time before one of those magi challenged the other. In the event it came about after Lothar had almost been killed trying to summon aid from Chepstow during the Battle of Lydney. Ruaridh was accused of cowardice, and responded by informing Lothar of his ignorance. As they linked two balls of incandescent light appeared, and it was but a moment before the one had fully overwhelmed the other as the older magus easily defeated the younger.

Winter 1119

The council of Severn Temple was precisely split on the matter of whether Deanne should be considered so great a threat that lethal force could be used against her. Antonius challenged Petrus to ensure a decision could be reached and soon the two were seemingly contained within crackling balls of energy, attempting to break free. Petrus' mastery of the art of Vim was more than enough to win covincingly and it was decided that Deanne should not be killed on sight.

Autumn 1150

The Council was deadlocked over the issue of whether Medius should approach Senior Quaesitor Serenia to ask whether Tiarnan's proposed amendment to the Charter, which gave each Magus the right to claim a gift of Vis from the covenant for the purposes of binding a familiar, had any chance of being passed by the Concilium Quaesitori. Tiarnan therefore challenged Medius over the issue, asking him to change his vote. Medius barely survived the first round of the certamen, so he gave way and agreed to support Tiarnan's proposal.

Winter 1156

With tempers running high in the Council chamber, Cormoran accused Dialectica of poor judgement in not appointing a replacement Ministrator while Theo was away from the covenant. Dialectica, annoyed at the implication that she had failed in her duty as Pontifex, responded with a challenge of Certamen. In the task, the two Magi attempted to halt the spread of a dread disease before it consumed their avatars. Dialectica proved much the stronger, and Cormoran slumped to the floor.

Later in the season, the two Magi exchange harsh words over whether Cormoran should be entitled to count his expedition to rescue a fae-touched child for the Magus Quellior as a service to the covenant. Medius ruled in favour of Dialectica, but Cormoran decided to use Certamen to resolve the dispute. Both Magi tried to force the other to utter the phrase "I am in the wrong, and I concede the matter." Cormoran soon found himself outclassed, and he gave way.

Spring 1157

Having be found guilty by the Council of spending a season in his laboratory rather than assisting the mining operation at Blackney as commnaded by Dialectica, Cormoran proposed that he should not be punished for his crime. Most of the other Magi supported Dialectica's proposal that Cormoran should have to undertake an additional two seasons service, so Cormoran challenged Tiarnan to get him to change his vote. The contest involved commanding two great animals, a black bear and the multi-coloured snake, to attack the opposing Magus. For the third time in just two seasons, Cormoran found his Arts to be no match for those of his opponent, and he soon fell exhausted to the floor.

Autumn 1157

The Council meeting at the start of Autumn 1157 AD saw four incidents of Certamen, all over the same issue. Dialectica decided to hold fresh elections for the positions of Ministrator and Imperator. Theo won the title of Ministrator handily, but the vote for Imperator was much closer, with Astrius edging out Cormoran by four votes to three. Cormoran decided to force the issue by challenging Theo to Certamen to get him to change his vote. In what will surely stand for some time as the longest Certamen, Cormoran at last managed to defeat Theo, demonstrating his control over plants and trees.

With the vote now favouring Cormoran, Aelfwin decided to step in. He challenged Tiarnan to change his vote, and the contest took the form of a battle between magical and faerie animals, with both Magi attempting to summon more creatures to aid their cause. It seems Aelfwin's confidence in the superiority of his Arts was misplaced, for the contest lasted only moments before his slumped unconscious to the ground. The vote therefore remained four to three in favour of Cormoran.

At this point, Astrius decided to intervene and challenged his rival for the position, Cormoran. The contest was to heal the terrible wounds that appeared on the bodies of two human figures. The two Magi appeared well-matched, with Astrius having only a slight advantage, until the Flambeau appeared to lose his concentration and his magics went awry. The phantasmal figure that Astrius had been healing now took corporeal form, and a stream of real blood leaked from its wounds over the Council chamber. The contest was declared over, with the decision favouring Cormoran, and the Magi hastily summoned the Castellan to remove the unpleasant body from the chamber.

The final round of Certamen then took place, as Medius challenged Cormoran. The two Magi engaged in a battle of wits to see who could locate a person on map, using an enchantment similar to the Inexorable Search. Cormoran was still weary from his battle with Astrius, and he proved no match for Medius. Astrius was therefore elected to serve as Imperator once more.

Autumn 1162

After Cormoran refused to divulge the details of his activities in the faerie regio, Tiarnan demanded that he reveal the nature of the bargain he had struck with the Erechwyth and the reward he had been promised. Cormoran refused, and Tiarnan challenged him the Certamen over the matter. The contest took the form of an investigation into the disease that was spreading through a body. The battle initially remained close, but Cormoran soon got the upper hand, and Tiarnan fell unconscious to the floor.

Spring 1163

A furious row broke out between Cormoran and Tiarnan after the former accused the latter and Aelfwin of bring "weak and useless" following their refusal to allow him to take up the Erechwydd's offer to join forces against a camp of diabolists in the Dean. Tiarnan was unable to challenge Cormoran to Certamen, but he goaded Cormoran into issuing the challenge himself by asking whether the giant was so cowardly that he was unwilling to let the Arts decide who was in the right. The battle itself lasted but a few moments, as the combination of Muto and Animal clearly favoured the Merinitan. However, Tiarnan's satisfaction at the speed of his victory soon turned to horror when, with the covenant's Imperator lying unconscious on the floor of the Council chamber, he felt the Aegis being breached by one of the diabolist Caelestis' spells.

Summer 1163

When the Council met to discuss the events of the previous season, Cormoran felt affronted that his decision to abandon the covenant to hunt diabolists was questioned by the other Magi. Medius asked Cormoran to state whether he was willing to abide by the strictures of the charter and remain within the covenant should a similar situation present itself in the future. The giant declared that he would act in the same way again, arguing that his actions were in the best interests of the covenant. Medius therefore stripped him of the rank of Imperator, an act that Cormoran believed was foolish and dangerous. Cormoran challenged Medius to rescind this measure, but he was unable to best the Ministrator, who defeated him with little apparent effort.

Autumn 1164

At Council, Theo revealed that the faerie knight Sir Turold had asked him to help retake the settlement of Stonevale as payment for a bargain made years before. Cormoran argued that Theo should not go, for he would feel honour bound to help defend the place against Sir Turold's attacks. The Council agreed that it would be best if neither Magus ventured into the faerie regio at this time, but Cormoran decided to ensure that Theo would take no action by challenging him to certamen. The battle lasted some time as the two Magi strove to entwine each other in creepers, but Cormoran enventually triumphed. Later that day, he approached Tiarnan to request permission to enter the faerie regio to carry out some "unknown" errand. Tiarnan forbade him to go and challenged him to certamen over the matter to enforce his will. The contest required to two Magi to serach for each other through rock and stone, though it lasted but a short time before Tiarnan proved victorious. Towards the end of the season, after Cormoran had clearly acted in violation of the result of the ceratmen, Astrius raised a motion that no Magi should be allowed to interact with the faeries without seeking the Council's permission. Tiarnan opposed the motion on principle, and Astrius challenged him to certamen over the matter. The matter was to have taken the form of a healing contest, but it had barely started before Astrius was overwhelmed and brought almost to the brink of death. Quite shocked, the Magi decided to take the issue no further.

Winter 1164

At Council, Astrius declared that Tiarnan's actions the previous season indicated that he could not serve as an unbiased Legationis to the Fae, since he had resorted to certamen to prevent Cormoran entering the regio. Medius chose not to allow the motion, since he did not view Tiarnan's actions as in any way contrary to his role, so Astrius chose to use ceratmen to get him to reverse his decision. Both Magi sought to make their Gift so overpowering that they drove the other back. Astrius proved tobe the stronger, and so Medius agreed to rescind his decision. The subsequent vote saw Tiarnan stripped of his poistion.

Autumn 1165

A tempestuous debate about whether the exile Cormoran for his foolishness in the faerie regio ended with three votes in favour (Dialectica, Theo and Tiarnan) and four against (Aelfwin, Astrius, Cormoran and Medius). Dialectica challenged Comoran to change his vote, and the contest was swiftly resolved in her favour, taking the vote to 4 to 3. Astrius then challenged Theo on the same issue, and he prevailed in a few moments, bringing the vote back to where it started. In a unusual move, Aelfwin immediately challenged Tiarnan, and the Merinitan proved no match for Aelfwin's mastery of the Arts, which moved the vote to 5 to 2 against. Fianlly, Astrius challenged Dialectica and was rapidly overcome. It was only then that the thought behind their plan became obvious, for with Astrius now unconcious, he could not be challenged to change his vote. Unwilling to prolongue the issue any longer, Dialectica agreed that the will of the Council seemed clear on this matter, and Cormoran remained a member of Severn Temple.

Autumn 1167

Dialectica's decision to leave the covenant meant that her valuable laborartory equipment was now spare. Neither Tiarnan nor Cormoran were willing to let it go to waste, and they could not agree on a compromise to resolve the matter. Cormoran challenged Tiarnan to certamen, but his choice of Technique, Muto, proved rather unwise. The contest had hardly started before the giant realised his mistake and withdrew to avoid falling senseless to the ground. Tiarnan tried to be magnanimous about the matter, but it was clear to all that he was not-so-secretly pleased about the outcome.

Winter 1175

At the summit of the Morrigan's Hill, Cormoran learned that the story told of Audacia's death was untrue, and that she had in fact been slain by an infernal serpent. Astrius had clearly heard this before, and Cormoran pressed him to reveal the details of the tale. After a fractious Council meeting, Cormoran challenged Astrius to certamen over the matter. Both Magi attempted to transform a phantasmal fire into their favoured shape. From the start, Astrius' Arts proved the stronger, and after a short while the fire took on the appearance of a running hound. With that, the matter was considered closed, though Cormoran continued to harbour doubts about the whole issue.

Spring 1176

Carywn's application to join the covenant prompted a series of challenges after Cormoran voted against his admission. First, Dialectica challenged Cormoran and swiftly defeated him. Astrius, believing it wrong to use certamen to settle such an important matter, challenged Dialectica to change her vote, but the Maga proved too strong. Finally, Medius, sharing Astrius' view, stepped in to try to get Dialectica to change her vote, though he fared no better than the Flambeau. With several unconscious bodies lying about the Council chamber, Aelfwin wisely called a halt to proceedings until the next day.

Winter 1176

During a stormy Council meeting following the death of Aelfwin, Astrius' temper got the better of him, and he resorted to shouting down the other Magi as they sought to understand exactly what had gone wrong. Carwyn told him to shut up, but Astrius refused, daring him to do anything about it. Carwyn, therefore, challenged him to certamen, but the Flambeau's mastery of Ignem proved too strong for the Ex Miscellanean, and Carwyn was forced to withdraw from the contest before the magics oberwhelmed him. Curiously, the incident took much of the venom out of the meeting, and matters proceeded much more smoothly thereafter.

Autumn 1192

Under the mistaken impression that the Aegis had been breached several times due to an attack on the covenant, Cormoran sought to prevent Medius from opening the gate to permit Cynfelyn entrance. He initial used magic to make the South gate impossible to enter, but later challenged Medius to certamen after the Quaesitor moved to the Spring gate. The Art of Muto was never Medius' favourite, and Cormoran was able to best his opponent.

Winter 1192

A few days before the Wizard's War between Paleria and Cynfelyn ws due to start, the Magi felt the Aegis breached. Suspecting that Paleria had made an early entrance, Medius and Tiarnan began a search of the grounds, seeking to expel the Flambeau if they found her. Alas, she found them first, challenging each one in turn while she remained invisible. Her mastery of the Art of Perdo proved far too potent for the two members of Severn Temple, and each of them were defeated in short order, allowing Paleria to resume her plans.

Spring 1195

Having been warned through Saul's prophetic readings of the Torah that Xanthia would betray the Magi on their way to the Grand Tribunal, Medius sought to bar her from joining them. His idea that one of them should carry message back to Cad Gadu that Holy Isle's ship had run aground was a good one, but his execution was faulty, as he paused too long, giving Xanthia time to challenge using her favoured Technique of Rego. Despite this, the contest was closely matched, with considerable quantities of vis spent by both parties. However, in the end, the Tremere's Arts proved too strong, and Medius slumped to the floor, unconscious.

Summer 1214

Cynfelyn and Laurius met in north Wales as both searched for a potential apprentice. Laurius rescued a promising boy from a house fire, yet Cynfelyn challenged him for the right to take the apprentice. The contest took the form of two mountains seeking to overwhelm the other, and much vis was spent on either side to influence the outcome. In the end, Laurius proved to be the stronger, and Cynfelyn fell senseless to the floor. When he awoke, Cynfelyn called in a boon granted by Laurius' pater, Primus Motus, and claimed the boy. The two Magi left on poor terms, with Laurius viewing Cynfelyn's actions as dishonourable.

Spring 1218

Cormoran had a furious row during the Council meeting over the matter of whether the covenant should sell Gofynwy's Brand to the Erechwydd. At the end of the meeting, Cormoran challenged Tiarnan to certamen, demanding an apology for a perceived insult. However, the giant's rage proved ineffective, and he was quickly overwhelmed. The contest took the form of an escape from the Erechwydd's icy prison.

Summer 1222

Primus Kentigern of Ex Miscellanea's behaviour caused an uproar after he castigated the Tribunal for its support of Marius' actions as king. The Primus refused to obey Praeca Edith's demand that he leave the chamber, and Astrius rose to enforce the Praeca's will. Certamen followed, with each of the participants casting bolts of lightning at the other. The contest seemed evenly matched, for both Magi had considerable prowess in the chosen Arts of Creo and Auram, but Astrius eventually proved victorious, partly thanks to the goodly quantity of vis he had to hand. The Primus' unconscious body was removed from the room, and the Tribunal meeting continued without him.

Autumn 1252

With the Council deadlocked over where to erect the Aegis of the Hearth given the desire to trap a renegade member of House Merinita, Daedalus challenged Erla to resolve the impasse. The contest, in which the Magi attempted to compel a body to strike one another, was over swiftly, as Daedalus' experience with Certamen proved too much for Erla.

Autumn 1252

Maximus struck a deal with Erla to exact revenge for her earlier defeat at the hands of Daedalus. However, Astrius ruled that the matter had been concluded at the previous Council meeting and that no further challenges would be heard. Maximus seemed willing to let the matter drop, but Daedalus demanded that he admit defeat since a formal challenge had been issued. Maximus refused, so the two fought Certamen despite the fact that the original dispute had already been resolved. Despite Maximus' skill with Intellego, Daedalus proved to be the more skilful practitioner of Certamen, and he was able to wear down the Quaesitor over a period of time.

Spring 1254

Maximus challenged Erla to certain in an attempt to influence a Council vote on whether to kill or spare the villagers in Lydney who had made a sacrifice that allowed the Erechwyth to storm the covenant. Maximus' mastery of Intellego and Corporem were far in excess of Erla's, but the Quaesitor underestimated his advantage, dealing Erla a mighty blow that ruptured a blood vessel in her skull. With Erla's life in danger, Maximus sheepishly offered up the Corporem vis needed to heal the wound.

Spring 1254

Maximus' victory over Erla caused the Council vote over the villagers in Lydney to be deadlocked, and it seemed as if Husam planned a challenge of Certamen to once again move the decision towards killing them, but Maximus was too swift, calling out "Intellego!" before Husam had finished his preamble. Despite his decisive action, Maximus' heart never seemed to be in the contest, and Husam proved to be the clear victor.

Autumn 1279

Hypatia has a dispute at council over who should study from a particular text. They fought a friendly certamen to resolve the matter, with Jari's expertise in imagonem proving to be too strong for Hypatia's more rounded arts.

Autumn 1295

While consulting Praeco Rocos of Loch Leglean about the Templar stronghold of Roxburgh, Terentius and Jari disagreed about what question to pose to the seer. Each could see the merits of the other's arguments, yet they preferred their own suggestions. To resolve the matter without the need for further debate, Terentius challenged Jari to certamen, but once again the Merinitan's mastery of imagonem saw him win the contest.