Awards and Coronets

Leslie Miller miller at
Mon Mar 27 12:03:11 PST 1995

> > I have watched worty individuals 
> > give their hearts and souls to the SCA in pursuit of these 
> > attributes.  They "become" peers, but don't get the recognition.  And 
> > they suffer because of it.
> I am afraid I am lost here. Do they atually recieve a peerage or not? I
> honestly think that if they strive to be the ideal of a peerage, it
> won't matter to them if they get the title associated with it.

They don't receive the peerage... or at least not for a _very_ 
long time.  And I do think it matters to some of them, on some level 
or another.  Here, I think we have an irreconcilable difference of 
opinion.  :-)  But that's cool.  I used that particular phrasing 
because Baron Pepin once told me that before somebody is made a peer, 
thy have to "become" one.  What hurts me is seeing someone who has 
"become" a peer (as far as I'm concerned), who is never officially 
recognised as one, for whatever reason, frequently because of things 
like "they don't travel enough", or "not enough peers down south know 
who they are", or "they stepped on so-and-sos toes once five years 

> > Now, if *wanting* the title is automatic 
> > disqualification for the title, I can understand why this happens.  
> > You want t be a knight, not just "knighly", so obviously you're not 
> > worthy of being a knight.
> This is true if you consider humility to be a "knightly" state of being.

Humility and desire for recognition may be two different things.  I 
believe it is possible to desire a title and still be modest.  
Really now, how many knights fight Crown tournament out of 
purely altruistic desires?  I think many of them probably fight 
because they want to be "King".  They want the *title*, the prestige, 
the rank and power that goes along with it. By your strict definition, 
fighting in Crown tournament to become a "King" is unbecoming of 
a peer.  However, I maintain that is quite possible to have a humble 
knight who wishes to become a humble King.  

I am splitting a very fine hair, here, I realize.  I guess I must say 
that I would like to agree with you on your ideals of peerdom, but 
the realist in me is forcing me to debate.  Perhaps it is because I 
know that *I* do not fit your ideals, and I'm just trying to justify 
my own feelings.  It maybe relevant to note that I'm *not* a peer, 
nor likely to become one anytime soon. :-)

> Should there then be a title for those people who truly show most of the
> desired stuff of the different areas? Is this what the Centurion does?
> Says, "Yeah, you're good, but you just don't quite have it." Should this
> be given to those who are good enough fighters to be knights, but don't
> have all the chivalry associated with knighthood? 

It think it should be for the opposite, IMHO.  I can think of far 
more fghters who possess all the attributes of knighthood except a 
kick-ass offense, and they're the ones who deserve to be rewarded for 
their efforts... especially since, as you say, it is the knightly 
attributes which should be emphasized. 
> > Is it 
>  beneficial to the Society to lose someone (to bitter disappointment 
> > and heartbreak) who does the work of a Pelican, just because the person 
> > wants to be recognised _as a Pelican_?  Seriosly?! 
> Of course not. I don't think someone who works tht hard towards it
> could honestly just want to be recognised as a Pelican. This could of
> course be my silly idealisms though.

Not silly.  And not *just* recognised, no.  But recognised, 

> > Ideally, perhaps, but again, this won't motivate all people.
> I think that is what the awards should do. Motivate people. They should
> e slaps on the back saying, you're doing good and on your way. You
> still have something to work on, but keep trying.
> This is different from saying, yeah, you'e been around long enough.
> Here it is.


> > Why slap them for shouting instead of holding it quietly 
> > in their hearts?  Unless holding it quietly in your heart is 
> > actually one of the aspects of being a peer, and if it is, then the 
> > circles keep it pretty quiet,
> I honestly don't know about this. I think the pomp and show around
> peerage is plenty shouting. If this isn't enough for someone, I honestly
> don't know what would be.

Yes, the pomp and circumstance around peerage s plenty of shouting.  
My point is that people desire exactly *that*.  If you do the work of a 
Pelican (whatever that is!), is it wrong to desire that bit of pomp and 
circumstance as a reward?  If only just a little bit?  That's all 
I'm saying.  

> >> I don't think that someone should
> >> be denyed something if they truly earned it, but I alo think that the
> >> further up the "ladder" you go, it should be more evident that you have
> >> the correctdesires in your heart.
> > I agree with this wholeheatedly.  I just think we may disagree 
> > on the definition of "correct desires".  I don't think a 
> > desire for recognition is *necessarily* a bad thing,
> I think that if that is your one driving goal, it probably is a bad
> thing.

That gets back to the humility issue, perhaps.

Thanks for a good discussion.  It's really forced me to examine my own 
motivation and ideals.

Shire of Mooneschadowe
Stillwater, OK
miller at

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