Michael A. Chance
mchance at crl.com
Sun Jul 16 15:16:25 PDT 1995
Pug cites the definition of "knight" from Webster's, and then writes:
> This clearly shows that the SCA's usage of the word Knight is just fine, but
> to replace it, we could use other terms. Personally I prefer Fighter or
> Warrior over Soldier or Man-at-arms.
However, there are only very rare cases where non-knights were
permitted to compete in tournaments in the Middle Ages. Certainly,
you wouldn't want to restrict non-Chivalry to competing only in
This is one of those things that got messed up in the early years of
the Society. In the first several tourneys, there were very few
entrants who were not referred to as "knights" or "Sir X". Those
elevated to the Peerage at Twelfth Night, AS II (about 14 or so)
comprised about 1/3 of the people who had regularly competed at that
point (remember, we're only talking about a half-dozen or so tourneys
at this time), and were made "Knights of the Laurel", according the
the text used. This would be consistent with medieval practice, where
nobles who were _already_ knights (small "k") might be inducted into
an exclusive royal order of knighthood and become "Knights" (capital
"K") of that order. Unfortunately, this distinction was lost early
on, so that _only_ members of what soon became known as the "Order of
Chivalry" could use the titles "knight" and "sir".
If we were to try to be more accurate to medieval practice, _any_
authorized fighter could call themselves a "knight" (small "k"), and
use the form "Sir X", and the Knights of the Order of Chivalry, as
Peers of the Realm, would be more appropriately styled "Baron" (if we
use a primarily English model).
Michael A. Chance St. Louis, Missouri, USA "At play in the fields
Work: mc307a at sw1stc.sbc.com of St. Vidicon"
Play: mchance at crl.com
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