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Varangian Voice




























The Varangian Voice is a magazine of research articles, news and reports relating to the activities, interests and experiences of the New Varangian Guard.

The Varangian Voice was originally published in 1984 as the “extremely unofficial news letter of the New Varangian Guard.” (VV Issue 1). It  then grew to become a well-respected re-enactment and historical magazine, with international distribution. The last Issue VV71 was published in April 2007.


Issues 1 to 10


This issue includes:
  • Objectives and targets in individual combat
  • Poem - Miniver Cheevy 
 
This issue includes:
  • Food for thought
  • Weight of armour 
  • Two clever locks 
  • Battle of Maldon 
  • Apple or pear cider 
  • Gundaroo 1984 
  • Celtic art 
  • The convention 
  • Jousting 
  • Viking axe 
 
This issue includes: the crossbow
  • Food for thought 
  • T-tunic 
  • The ruin 
  • Celtic art 
  • Riddles 
 
This issue includes:
  • Byzantine terms
  • Byzantine names 
  • 1066 Odinfest 
  • Woman’s costume 
  • The armourer 
  • Mayday festival 
  •  
This issue includes:
  • Shields
  • Order of the Centaur 
  • A medieval sword 
  • Fitting and tailoring mail 
  • Recipes 
  • Damascus steel 
  • Crossbow as a surgical instrument 
  • Book of Kells animals 
  • A Varangians song 
  • Officers Bransle 
  • Architectural wrought ironwork 
  • Linen cuirass and linen armour 
  • Barrel helm 
 
 
This issue includes:
  • Proposed archery standards
  • Anglo-Saxon riddles 
  • Hurdy gurdy 
  • Accord (medieval songs) 
  • Activities for "86" 
  • Saxon shield 
  • The bow 
  • Scramasax 
 
This issue includes:
  • Old Scots laws
  • Castle mountain '87 
  • Maldon midwinter feast 
  • Recipes 
  • Motte & Bailey castles 
  • Castle terminology 
  • Late breakfast 
  • When women were tough 
  • The word 'oak' 
  • NVG events 
  • Caesar invades Britain 
 
This issue includes: 
  • Conference details
  • Arrow loops & meutrieres 
  • Better archery 
  • Fireplaces 
  • Heralds 
  • Staff weapons 
  • Annihilated again 
  • Byzantine military regulations 
  • NVG calendar 
 
This issue includes:
  • Archery report
  • Dark ages combat report 
  • Notices 
  • Organisation of NVG Inc 
  • Bogman of Cheshire 
 
This issue includes:
  • Notices
  • After the Gathering 
  • Poem 
  • Go a Viking 
  • Kings task 
  • Varangian companion 


Issues 21 to 30


This issue includes:
  • Garrison reports
  • Book review 
  • Force of blows 
  • Notes on Byzantine costume 
  • The Seljuk 
  • Women in the Byzantine Imperial family 
  • First aid treatments 
  • Definition of a castle 
  • Earliest European monarchy 
  • Banners 
 
This issue includes:
  • NVG Conference 1992
  • Al Zinj archery competition 
  • Autumn in Armidale 
  • Rowany 
  • Mountains report 
  • Archery training report 
  • Fletching register 
  • Sharing information 
  • Life on the borders of the Empire 
  • Making a bowstring 
  • Ankle boot construction 
  • Islamic names 
  • The "Varangian Rhomphaia" 
 
This issue includes:
  • National structure
  • Ben-Allah report 
  • Once a jolly Varangian 
  • Seljuq armour & weapons 
  • Banded lamellar 
  • Illustration of a Varangian 
  • Peter's boot pattern 
  • The Solenarion 
  • Port Headland news

This issue includes:
  • Cossack fair
  • Things of interest 
  • Battle standards 
  • National body discussion 
  • Viking shoe pattern 
  • Letter to members 
  • What light through yonder window breaks - Lookout a fire arrow 
  • Fletching register 
  • 7th medieval convention 
  • East European heraldry 
  • The Balkan Slavs 
  • Uses of the Varangian Guard 
  • Tiraz band. 
 
This issue includes:
  • A Varangian in Byzantium
  • Al-Zinj archery tournament 
  • Golden arrow archery tournament 
  • Museum contacts 
  • The Magyars 
  • Sabres 
  • Update on the 7th Australasian medieval convention. 
 
This issue includes:
  • Inter garrison news
  • Projectile combat 
  • Noted in Alexiad 
  • Using carved stone as a source material 
  • A case for personae 
  • A 15th century battle standard 
  • Book reviews 
  • On the wearing of purple. 
 
This issue includes:
  • Constantinople through the eyes of the early crusaders
  • Byzantine coinage 
  • Use of cosmetics and perfume in Islam 
  • A Turko-Persian noblewoman's costume 
  • Fletching register 
  • Conference archery results 
  • Book reviews.

This issue includes:
  • Wagga review
  • Archery scores 
  • Do the bolt 
  • Eighth Byzantine studies conference report 
  • Shoes from Parliament St York 
  • Going to town 
  • Use of cosmetics part 2 
  • Academic historiography and historical reenactment 
  • The Varangian bra 
  • The Mamluk "Furisiyya" 
  • Song of the Riverina garrison. 
 
This issue includes:
  • Adaptation of the Bocksten man's tunic
  • Soft armour of the Varangian period 
  • Uses of elder 
  • La Gran Contessa 
  • Traveller's tales 
  • Erotic poems from India and Spain 
  • On the Incorporation 
  • Fletching register 
  • Centrepiece - Chess 
  • Persian Metal Technology 700-1300 book review 
  • Medieval archer's society 
  • Bibliography of archery 
  • Some maces 
  • Personae and pottery part 1 
  • Recipe review. 
 
This issue includes:
  • Outpost reports
  • Letter re use of personae 
  • Insurance 
  • Chastelet letter and press release 
  • Middle eastern medieval tent part 1 
  • Meandering through tapestry 
  • Viking age scabbards from archaeological finds 
  • Headwear and mantles for Egyptian and Arab dress part 1 
  • History alive.


Issues 41 to 50

This issue includes:
  • Post empire Byzantine warriors - The Stradiotes
  • Approaches to re-enactment 
  • The work of angles 
  • Two unusual bottles 
  • Queen Melisende's psalter covers part 2 
  • NVG gathering Oct '96 
  • Food, glorious food. 
 
This issue includes:
  • Commentary
  • Combat rule review 
  • When is Sviatoslav not "the" Sviatoslav 
  • A short history of Byzantine Thessalonika 
  • Byzantine armour for re-enactors 
  • A survey of cloth armours depicted in the Maciejowski bible 
  • The common art of regicide 
  • Book review. 
 
This issue includes:
  • The foot soldier
  • Bringer of plenty 
  • And ne'er the twain shall meet? 
  • Primary sources for Viking information 
  • Food, glorious food. 
 
This issue includes:
  • The "Pioneer helmet"
  • Battle numbers 
  • A diplomat's view of Constantinople in the 10th century 
  • Trivia 
  • The 2 Saints Cyril 
  • A more problematic tunic pattern of our period 
  • A select chronology of Byzantium part 1 
  • The spear butt 
  • The real Gothic script 
  • The bear 
  • Measuring military hardware 
  • Havamal translations 
 
This issue includes:
  • A select chronology of Byzantium part 2
  • Errata 
  • Experiments with early medieval pottery 
  • A brief history of velvet 
  • Foot soldiers - or tin cans on legs? 
  • Book review 
  • Byzantine military coats 
  • Havamal translations 
  • Sebbersund - A Viking town in north Jutland, Denmark. 
 
This issue includes:
  • Group re-enactment in the social context - An 
  • opinion
  • To be historical or not to be historical, that is the question 
  • More information on Byzantine padded armour and helmets 
  • 9th Australian medieval conference competition results 
  • History of archery - Conference paper part 1 
  • A multiple plate helmet 
  • More satchels 
  • Havamal translations 
  • Food glorious food. 
 
This issue includes:
  • A Varangian encampment
  • The Armenian history of Vardapet Aistakes Lastivertc'i 
  • Chronology of the crossbow 
  • How heavily armoured were the Emperor's Varangians 
  • The battle of the books 
  • History of archery part 2 - Glossary Appendix

This issue includes:
  • The mission of Bruno of Querfurt to the Pechenegs
  • Common life in Byzantium 
  • Graffito of a medieval sip in Hagia Sophia cathedral 
  • The baptism of Vladimir from the history of 
  • Yahya ibn-Said of Antioch 
  • A replica Viking chest based on the Mastermyr find 
  • History of archery part 3 - Glossary Appendix 
 
This issue includes:
  • Byzantine lamellar armour - Conjectural reconstruction of a find
  • Is this the heart of the Byzantine empire 
  • How well armoured were the Emperor's Varangians - Another point of view 
  • Byzantine bags 
  • How to make a replica of a Viking table based on the Sala Hytta find 
  • Nikephorian questions 
 
This issue includes:
  • What is a castle
  • Genesis of the Emperor's Varangians - A new theory 
  • Simple Viking jewellery 
  • Projectile combat 
  • How to construct a projectile combat helm 
  • The "Lund" Viking stool 
  • Reading sources: Material detail in Byzantine literature. 


Issues 61 to 71

This issue includes:
  • The Armidale Odyssey
  • Two representations of Byzantine quilted armour in the Tokali Kililse 
  • The battle of Larissa 
  • The Swiss 
  • A Marshall's report from Armidale. 
 
This issue includes:
  • The Viking longhouse project
  • Small round shields 
  • Making horn armour 
  • Two headed axes in the middle ages 
  • Some interesting shoes. 
 
This issue includes:
  • Siege and skirmish event report
  • Vlachernai skirmish weekend 
  • The dekad: Size and composition 
  • The great rhomphaia controversy 
  • Siegfried. 
 
This issue includes:
  • 2003 conference report
  • Vlachernai archery event report 
  • Project 1453 report 
  • Comments on "What is it?" 
  • A manuscript illustration 
  • Feasts and food under felt 
  • Integral and separate coifs at the battle of 
  • Hastings 
  • Knattleikr: The Trelleborg rules with Vlachernai 
  • variations. 
 
This issue includes:
  • A report on BMFAT from the NVG
  • The Tvinningsben or Lucet 
  • Reconstruction of the Coppergate sock 
  • The Byzantine kavadion 
  • Interpretation of the identity of the 2 cavalrymen in the Dovecote church 
  • Book review: Arthur and the lost kingdoms. 

This issue includes:
  • Melbourne medieval fayre and tourney report
  • A Byzantine passtime: Stovmachion - 
  • stovmakion 
  • Byzantine shield patterns - Making use of primary sources 
  • The sabre of Charlemagne 
  • A fur lined Rus kaftan 
  • Some possible models for the kavadion 
  • A full suit of Korean lamellar armour. 
 
This issue includes:
  • In memoriam Valerie Houghton 
  • Reconstruction of the Viborg shirt 
  • The military equipment of Johannes Tzimiskes in the paintings of the Dovecote church, Cavusin: 
  • the spear 
  • Vlachernai archery weekend, Kinglake 
  • Recipe: Beef and ale stew 
  • The gathering 2004: Corryong 
  • The Raid. 
 
This issue includes:
  • MMFAT 2004
  • Obituary: Mikko Sikstrom 
  • A Veneto-Byzantine chest? Casket of the 
  • blessed Juliana of Collalto 
  • Traveller's tales 
  • Garrison names in the NVG 
  • Decorating horn and bone the peasant way 
  • The Hussars 
  • Footwork: Re-enactment fighting and George Silver

This issue includes:
  • Medieval and Renaissance Fair – South 
  • Australia 2004
  • Walking under the Southern Cross 
  • Melbourne Medieval Fair & Tournament 
  • Differences in Turkish and Mongolian clothing 
  • of the 13th and 14th Century 
  • Byzantine Processional Crosses. 
 
This issue includes:
  • What was worn under the tunic in the 11th 
  • century
  • Chests catalogue 8th - 13th century Europe 
  • The military equipment of Johannes Tzimiskes 
  • in the Cavusin paintings, Goreme 
  • Dovecote church: The skaplion-zaba 
  • European hauberk construction. 
 
This issue includes:
  • New discovery of Viking Age clothing from 
  • Pskov, Russia 
  • Sword vs Shield 
  • Scale armour construction 
  • Viking chest lock: Instruction on how to make a 
  • Viking chest lock 
  • 2007 Medieval Conference Reports - Damp-acon, Cheddar Con 
  • 2007 Period encampment inspection report & 
  • archery competition results 
  • Book review - Viking: Sworn Brother - The 
  • heroes of the North live on. 


Issues 11 to 20


This issue includes:
  • Rowany report
  • Odin fest report 
  • Odin fest archery report 
  • Gothic architecture 
  • Alverics archery visor 
 
This issue includes:
  • Memorable events
  • AAF Spring fair report 
  • Herbal beer 
  • Poem 
 
This issue includes:
  • NEMAS annual banquet
  • Crossword 
  • Clown hall feast 
  • Songs 
  • Archery combat day 
 
This issue includes: 
  • Maldon '89
  • Conference competition results 
  • Great bridge battle of Maldon 
  • Some beverage thoughts 
  • Forth crusade and the fall of Constantinople 
 
This issue includes:
  • Games '89
  • Among our weaponry 
  • SCA winter in vesture 
  • Medieval gourmet night 
  • Recipe 
  • Byzantine costume 
  • Defence in depth 
  • Letters & notices 
  • Pedlars page 
 
This issue includes:
  • Mudgee
  • Mead & mayhem 
  • SCA uncivil war 
  • 24 hour siege 
  • Alverics archery visor 
  • Medieval gourmet night 
  • Recipe 
  • Among our weaponry 
  • How not to be a barbarian 
  • Beer, dear to our hearts 
  • Song 
  • Letters 
 
This issue includes:
  • Siege - apocryphal accounts
  • Siege - some comments from the SCA 
  • Among our weaponry 
  • Art of courtly love 
  • Varangian banner 
  • NVG banners past present & future 
  • Medieval gourmet night 
  • Recipe 
  • At a Varangian table 
  • Arabic names & titles 
  • Viking shields 
  • NVG Mildura 
  • Book review 
  • Allahu Akbar 
 
This issue includes:
  • Garrison reports (Urds, Blue mountains, 
  • Sydney) 
  • Book reviews 
  • AABS conference 
  • Ladies at war 
  • Bayeux bloomers 
  • Archers corner 
  • Early Islamic attitudes to unbelievers 
  • Bulgarians 
  • Poem 
  • Keltic shields 
  • Wrestling 
  • Fox & geese game 
  • Poem 
 
This issue includes:
  • Garrison reports
  • Book review 
  • More on the Bulgarians 
  • Scale aventail 
  • Alverics scale aventail 
  • VIth Conference 
  • Wrestling 
  • Cooking 
  • Games 
This issue includes:
  • The guard 10 years on
  • Garrison reports 
  • Book review 
  • Varangians of Russia 
  • Kings retinue 
  • Tourney 
  • Battle honours 
  • A Moslem view of the crusades 
  • Cooking 
  • Pastimes - riddles 
 

Issues 31 to 40

This issue includes:
  • Dyrrachium life on the edge of an empire
  • The "Norman Bib" reconstructed 
  • The Viking conversion to Christianity 
  • Islamic eastern medieval tent part 2 
  • Islamic helmet & some Byzantine helms 
  • Know your rights, know your limits 
  • Bocksten man 2 - Adaptation of the Bocksten man's hood 
  • The computer and the medievalist 
  • Global medieval information network 
  • Unicornis captivatur Anon C13 song 
  • Headwear and mantles for Egyptian and Arab dress part 2 
  • Recipes for fermented milk products 
  • Grubbing in the cesspit - Archaeology news 
  • Conference 1995 
  • Book reviews 
  • Archery results. 
 
This issue includes:
  • Some examples of Ayyubid or early Mameluk leatherwork
  • A Byzantine style helmet based on the Skylitzes chronicle of Madrid 
  • The spear - Be it ever so humble 
  • Incorporation issues 
  • Three depictions, possibly based on Varangians 
  • A collation of some of the personal names from 
  • some of the Sagas part 1 
  • Belly dancing costumes from Guard period illustrations part 1 
  • Irish hairnet  

This issue includes:
  • Firemaking using flint and steel
  • The Vikings of Erin - A short history 
  • Highlights of Denise and Sven's overseas adventure - Istanbul and Scandinavia 
  • Belly dancing costumes from Guard period illustrations part 2 
  • A sleeve and shoulder arrangement for hanging lamellar 
  • A collation of some of the personal names from some of the Sagas part 2 
  • Centrepiece - X chairs - Portable seating for the wealthy 
  • Musical instruments and ensembles of the Byzantine era 
  • Summary - Digenes Akritas and the armies of the Akritoi 
  • More and yet more helmets part 1 
  • The Varangians of Byzantium - Problems with the Blondal/Benedikz book 
  • nfantry vs cavalry: The Byzantine response 
  • AMCA combat survey results. 

This issue includes:
  • An eleventh century shirt from Denmark
  • More and yet more helmets part 2 
  • Byzantine tableware 
  • Patterns for a Turcoman shirt, coat and trousers 
  • The spear butt 
  • Association news - How to host an association meeting 
  • The Gjermundbu mail shirt 
  • Book review - Anglo-Saxon dress. 
 
This issue includes:
  • The magical belt buckle tour (poem)
  • Conference '95 
  • Greek fire and gunpowder in the Byzantine armies 
  • The mystery of the 2 headed axe of Alexander Neckham 
  • A light in the East 
  • A Bulgarian/Byzantine hat 
  • Authenticity - Everyone's responsibility 
  • Against personas 
  • Centrepiece - Some Guard period marriage customs 
  • The English Varangians 
  • The "Viking shield" from archaeology 
  • There's a first time for everything. 
  •  
This issue includes:
  • Conferences '95
  • Garrisons: Authentic or practical 
  • Relations with "The Movement" 
  • The Armenians 
  • Muggers of old 
  • Viking pillow from Mammen 
  • Food and culinary recipes of the Byzantines 
  • Banquest vs authenticity 
  • The Islamic shadow play - A "new" excuse for bawdiness 
  • The English at the battle of Myriokephalon 
  • November archery event 
  • Archery results Batlow Sept '95 
  • Spear penetration 
  • Book review 
  • Video review. 

This issue includes:
  • Kiev and the supply of Norse mercinaries to Constantinople
  • The oilskin cloak that never went to Batlow 
  • Wooden shafts - One chop and they're history 
  • Wickelbander 
  • Centrepiece - Medieval gardens 
  • The adoption of Byzantine equipment and customs by the Varangian Guard 
  • The myth of purple pants 
  • Books - Daily living in the 12th century 
  • The Gjermundbu mail shirt 
  • Greek fire and gunpowder part 2 
  • The miracles of St Basil of Nausea 
  • November archery event 
  • Al Zinj archery tournament results 
  • Hector Cole replica arrow heads. 
 
This issue includes:
  • Everyday life of the Emperor's Varangians
  • Further comment on the Varangian lifestyle 
  • A view from Adelaide 
  • Shovels - Not boring at all 
  • The tale of the simpleton husband - A shadow play 
  • A look at lamellar 
  • European tents 
  • Crusader helmets 
  • Whither the New Varangian Guard? 
  • Book review - Anglo-Saxon food. 
 
This issue includes:
  • A pre-battle ritual
  • Basic Viking belt, pouch and cape 
  • Whither the NVG - A reply 
  • Viking network 
  • Viking souvenir and Sigtuna museum 
  • Hamaval 
  • A simple shoe 
  • A medieval Byzantine helmet 
  • Certain historical facts 
  • Book review 
  • Food, glorious food. 

This issue includes:
  • Items of interest on Queen Melisende's psalter covers
  • Svyatoslav codex 
  • Byzantine game of Empodizon Ischadas or Bob Fig 
  • African armour on the eve of the 2nd Punic war 
  • A pilgrim's alms satchel 
  • Sven's conference tips 
  • The fletching register 
  • Domesday book 
  • Book review 
  • Food, glorious food. 


 Issues 51 to 60

This issue includes:
  • Turkish leather water bottles
  • Anglo-Saxon beards and Harold Godwinson's amazing handlebar moustache 
  • Runes as everyday literacy 
  • Where does a Turk keep his money? 
 
This issue includes:
  • NVG Inc web page
  • Ring headed pins 
  • Heraldry and the 12th century shield 
  • A warrior with a Danish axe in a Byzantine ivory panel 
  • Mediterranean camp cooking menus
  • 13th century central Asian/middle eastern clothing from existing garments. 
 
This issue includes:
  • The end of the Viking age
  • Temple rings and female headdress of the eastern Slavs in Rus part 1 
  • Wierd and wacky weapons of the PBI. 
 
This issue includes:
  • How to make a Viking toy horse
  • Eating in Byzantium - Provisioning and mess practice in the Byzantine army 
  • A Varangian recruitment officer 
  • Book review: The Mastermyr find - A Viking age tool chest from Gotland 
  • The Byzantine diadem. 
 
This issue includes:
  • Past times: NVG annual archery tournament
  • Joint training Pt Gellibrand 
  • Past times ahead: Australian medieval reenactment conference 
  • Eastern archery 
  • Byzantium: The English connection 
  • Relics of the Varangians part 1 
  • Book review: A history of the Kings of England 
  • The use of sword on sword 
  • Two Chinese archery games 
  • What's the name of your sword. 
 
This issue includes:
  • Report: Hastings 2000
  • Secrets of bigger, faster medieval ships uncovered by Channel Island ferries 
  • Yet another satchel 
  • The skills expected of an archer 
  • What is a Viking? 
  • Relics of the Varangians part 2 
  • Eating in Byzantium. 

This issue includes:
  • Past times: Nordmannia feast report & NVG 
  • AGM
  • Sven Asliefson: last of the Vikings 
  • Eating in Byzantium 
  • The seal of Bardas 
  • Relics of the Varangians part 3 
  • An interesting collection of archer's rings 
  • The great Hastings trip 
  • Book review: Somerled and the emergence of Gaelic Scotland. 
 
This issue includes:
  • NVG on the internet 
  • Vlachernai Garrison's 20th birthday event 
  • Interpretation of the identity of the 2 cavalrymen in the Dovecote church, Goreme 
  • Everyday life with the Emperor's Varangians 
  • Byzantine woman's stola & palla & Byzantine men's tunica 
  • The Godwins: A family of power 
  • Friends and foes of Byzantium 
 
This issue includes:
  • Past times: Vlachernai's 20th birthday & Al Zinj's archery results
  • A history of the NVG 
  • The making of a bone archer's ring 
  • A history of the city Chersonesos 
  • What is it? 
  • Three book reviews 
  • Relics of the Varangians part 4 
  • A light in the dark 
  • A battle at Corryong (The Gathering). 
 
This issue includes:
  • Past times: Vlachernai Garrison's 20th birthday event
  • The Khazars 
  • Amongst the treasures of Mt Athos - Greek manuscripts of Hodegon monastry 
  • Authenticity: Holy grail or holy hand grenade 
  • Ballock or kidney daggers 
  • Making a hardened leather lamellar 
  • Burning down the house.