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Let’s Rumble Medieval Style! Belegarth Battles In Edgewater


If you frequent the lake on the weekends in our neighborhood, chances are you might have seen a group of people fighting with swords, shields, and dressed in medieval clothing. But no one seems to get physically hurt or arrested? What is this grandiose fighting fest and what it is all about?!

It is the Belegarth Medieval Combat Society, and they have a pretty significant following both in Chicago and around the world. Belegarth is a full contact sport in which people participate in a performative experience of medieval fighting. They came out of a movement in the late ’70s, when groups of people who primarily fought each other with PVC pipes wrapped in insulation wanted a more stable and uniform rule set.

“Belegarth is the international ruleset in which we all fight. The Chicago group is the Realm of Morva. Morva began when myself and two other practices in the city decided to work together and share resources, advertising and membership so that we all can benefit from our close proximity to each other in the city,” states Realm Leader Matt Belk. The group practices in Edgewater at Foster Beach on Sundays, the Columbia College Chicago campus on Fridays and on the North Park University campus on Thursdays. As they are actively growing members, the group is always looking for new spaces to practice and open to new members.

“No matter what the participants interests are; be it purely fighting, crafting or just social, everyone helps to build the community and helps everyone grow,” says Belk. Check out the Belegarth National Wiki for more information about the rules, people, local groups and weapon construction. Anyone is welcome to come and practice. All they need to bring is themselves! The club provides loaner weapons and will happily teach people how to play (participants must be ages 16+).



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