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Bayan Hanover

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Photo
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Bayan accompanied by his Bodyguard
Information
Resides: New Jersey, United States
Status: Active
Awards:
This individual may not have an entry in the Order of Precedence, or may not have added their OPID yet. Volunteer editors may add it in the future.
Heraldry
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Bayan Hanover Household Device
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Brief

   Bayan Hanover, known as Winfield in the SCA, has been instrumental in developing the SCA community in China. As the pioneering figure who first openly promoted the SCA in China, he successfully popularized it across the entire country. His efforts have made the understanding and exchange of knowledge between the Western and Eastern worlds more accessible. By establishing a platform to help Eastern countries understand the SCA, he has enabled its influence to thrive in this traditionally strict region. Over the years, he has brought numerous new members and potential members to the SCA from the other side of the globe, while also providing SCAdians with invaluable Eastern historical resources and information for reference. 


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Early time - “Knights of the Three”

   At the age of 15, Winfield, then a high school freshman, embarked on an unexpected journey. As a modern military enthusiast, he often donned a US Marine battle outfit and carried a Civil War commanding blade at his side, even to school. This unique appearance made him a polarizing figure, both popular and unpopular, within and outside of school. Teachers and principals found him challenging to manage. His Patton-style yelling would precede his arrival, causing students to scatter, fearing what this "Sherman Tank" might do if he confronted them. No one, including Winfield himself, anticipated that his interests would shift towards a hobby that would eventually become a significant part of his life and career.

One day, a boy began appearing in front of the school building every morning, waiting for the fearsome Winfield to arrive. This boy always had a smile on his face as he watched Winfield get off his bike and enter the building. This routine continued for several weeks, gradually wearing down Winfield's psychological defenses and instilling a slight fear in him. Finally, one morning, Winfield stopped and asked the boy what he was doing. The boy, smiling even more, asked Winfield if he was interested in Medieval Knights. He mentioned that he had a friend who shared this interest and expressed a desire to befriend Winfield and start exploring the Medieval hobby together. The boy's name was Branden, and his friend, later known as Diago in SCA China, was called Hoff.

And so, in this simple yet profound way, the three of them came together.


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An Unexpected Start

   The three friends soon decided to start a medieval interest group and began searching for knightly orders to model themselves after. They eventually chose the Knights Hospitaller as their inspiration and named their group the "Hanover Hospitallers." Their aim was to honor the chivalry of the Hospitallers and to help those in need.

The group grew rapidly, reaching over ten members within two months. However, leadership changes soon followed. Initially, Hoff was designated as the Grand Master of the group, but he struggled to manage the members, who often ignored his decisions and practice schedules. In contrast, Winfield, known as the "Sherman Tank," had a natural ability to command attention and compliance from the group. Despite his boisterous personality, Winfield consistently provided good solutions and convincing reasons for his ideas during important decision-making processes.

The members believed Winfield had a unique ability to think outside the box. His innovative ideas and unconventional approach often surprised and inspired the group. This creativity later played a significant role in his involvement with the SCA and its introduction to China. Recognizing Winfield's leadership potential, Hoff decided to pass the leadership to him, a decision that was unanimously agreed upon by the group, although Winfield himself was initially reluctant.

This decision would eventually lead to a significant transformation in the historical interest circles within China and even internationally. Winfield's leadership and vision paved the way for unprecedented growth and development in the medieval reenactment community.


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The “Oldest” of the Elders

   In the early 2000s, historical hobbies in China were almost non-existent. People interested in Western European history were few and far between, and those dedicated to Han traditions were even rarer, with their cultural fashions only beginning to gain popularity in recent years. The primary way to access relevant historical resources at that time was through Cold-Weapon TieBai, an online discussion forum. Despite active discussions and questions, no organized groups existed to focus on these interests.

Around 2010, Winfield’s group emerged as the first formal historical interest group in China. Known as the Hanover Hospitallers, they presented themselves publicly as an organized entity, albeit small and unregistered with the government. Their debut garnered significant attention, and their concept of a Knights Order-style group quickly inspired many members of the Cold-Weapon TieBai forum to imitate them.

This development sparked considerable controversy in China. While some praised Winfield for his impressive leadership at the age of 15 and saw his group as a positive contribution to Chinese cultural development, others criticized him. They argued that his introduction of Crusader Christian, feudal lord, and knight chivalry traditions represented Western culture rather than traditional Chinese values. Critics believed that the revival of Chinese historical interests should have started with indigenous traditions. They contended that Winfield’s focus on Western medieval culture delayed the resurgence of the HanFu trend in China, which added immense pressure on him and his unintentional impact.

A decade later, while the HanFu trend is thriving in China, many still recall the 15-year-old who sparked significant debate and interest in historical hobbies. His early efforts are often discussed when examining the evolution of historical and cultural interests in China.


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To the World

   Winfield's efforts in promoting historical interests yielded impressive results. Beyond inspiring fans in other parts of China to form their own groups, his original group quickly expanded. Before his involvement with the SCA, his single group had grown into two, spanning separate provinces and boasting over a hundred members, including potential new groups and supportive individuals from across the country.

On July 28th, 2014, through an introduction by Marshal Tanaka Raiko, Winfield first encountered the SCA at the East Kingdom Novice Day in Morris Town, New Jersey. Attending as a special guest from China, he was warmly welcomed by King Brennan mac Fearghus and his court in a small ceremony.

On January 5th, 2015, Winfield received a certificate from Anton Trubnikov, the President of HMBIA (The Battle of the Nations), appointing him as the first representative and captain of the Chinese team. This role entrusted him with leading and managing the Chinese team for the games, further solidifying his influence in the historical reenactment community.


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The Original Middle Kingdom

  After his initial meeting with the SCA in 2014, Winfield quickly decided to participate in the organization and brought his two groups and followers along with him. His involvement in the SCA was thrilling news at the time. A 2015 article titled "The Original Kingdom Comes to Pennsic" The Original Kingdom Come to Pennsic by the SCA media outlet Pennsic Independent described the excitement that many SCAdians felt upon learning of Winfield's decision to join the SCA.


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With further promotion by Lady Cynthia du Pont, more SCAdians began to familiarize themselves with this new SCA family from the other side of the world. In the ensuing years, a growing number of SCAdians embarked on journeys to this distant 'Middle Kingdom,' eager to meet Winfield and his followers and embark on new adventures together.


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 Sir Myrdin the Just, a knight from the West Kingdom and an esteemed veteran from the East, was the first SCAdian to visit Winfield's groups in China. During his frequent visits over the years, he provided invaluable lectures on SCA knowledge and heavy combat techniques, along with equipment to support the growth of the SCA in China. A respected gentleman, Sir Myrdin made significant contributions to the early development of the Chinese SCA community.


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 Will Maker (Facebook name), a dedicated SCAdian, provided lectures and supervision to Winfield's group in Shenzhen, Guangdong Province. Unfortunately, he passed away a year later due to heart problems. A good man with a kind heart, he will be missed and is still fondly remembered by Winfield and his followers.


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 Among the many short stories, Duke Tim of Arindale, the former king of Aethelmearc, was another popular example of SCAdian visit China.


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 His meeting with Winfield's followers was a fascinating experience. He often spoke about the fun he had and the strong impression the trip left on him. After returning to the United States, he made a significant decision to support the SCA community in China. He organized donations, collecting contributions from various kingdoms, and appointed his household squire, Seamus O Arindale, as the SCA development adviser to Winfield's council.


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Since then, the decision had brought Win’s groups ever closer with Aethelmearc, when the society was having hard time to decide should Win’s groups stay together with West Kingdom or with Lochac or by themselves, the group decide to make their own choice of stay with Aethelmearc.


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Difficulties in China

  When the whole process of SCA China developing looks to be successful on the surface, what had been going on inside China is like a current under the water, sucking the drowning person further into the black whole.  The competition with the Chinese circle was biggest challenge they ever faced, besides regional contention, public opinion became another pressure they had to carry on.

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   SCA resources and ways of self-making was no doubt new to those in China, and were extremely popular among those beginner who were students, low-salary workers, in other way to say, people who does not have as much fund to support their hobby, by getting the free lectures and patterns, they got the chance to learn how to make the garbs or armors themselves with cheap price.


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   When these people see Win and SCA as the new savior of their new way of hobby, the competitors had seen it as a hostile action --- while they were the ones who owns the knowledge how making good armors, and be the only access those poor people can get the the garb or armors, they can live on doubling or trebling the price for the profit.  Win’s SCA development and providing free SCA lectures had reduced the number of their customers, which most of their buyers stop buying from them or asking them to refund. 

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   Pressures soon started to created by these people, where debate start to spread out in the circle ‘Should people support nation created garbs and armors or should they support the foreign import?’  In the debate, Win’s groups was been depicted into Nation’s Traitors and American’s Favorite Puppies.  Despite such description was disliked by the majority, but many people started to have doubt on whether SCA is a good thing for the circle’s future.


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The Empire of Nine Realms

   With the coming of the HanFu trends inside of China, Win’s groups as well started a transformation.  While Win had been active in United States, his council played a new leading role of management and group reform.  Cooperated with several new HanFu organizations, with over thousands members within China, they had organizated themselves into a new form, and renamed themselves the The Empire of Nine Realms.  


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Persona

14 Century European

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15 Century Ming China

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