Chivalry, Grace, and Women

Lord Larkin O'Kane larkin at
Tue Jul 15 09:44:21 PDT 1997

>So, my questions for the ladies and men of the Ironrose are these:

Sounds like a set of questions worthy of "Chronique"

>1. Is chivalry different for men than for women?

On the field, NO!  Off the field, I do not know. I would still offer
to carry the armour bag of a lady going to and from the field. Putting
on armour does not make a lady any less a lady.

>2. Can you give an example of a traditionally female courtesy that
>exemplifies chivalry?

Defining courtesy as "polite behavior; gracious manner or manners" I
fail to see that courtesy is either masculine or feminine. Polite
behaviour is not feminine or masculine. Gracious manners are expected
of both male and female.

>3. Can you point to a female who, in your mind, exemplifies chivalry and
>state why using examples both from the field and from off the field?

No, I cannot.  But, for that matter I cannot point to a male who does
so either.  It is much easier to define what is NOT chivalrous.

>4. Do you agree/disagree with the statement that grace is the feminine
>mirror of the masculine virtue of chivalry? Why or why not?

It sounds good and most certainly is the traditional way of things. I
believe that it is only in modern times that this question would even
be asked.

>5. If so, then can you give an example of a traditionally female courtesy
>that exemplifies grace?

On that I particularly like to see is the lady who waits at the door
for the gentleman to open it for her and only opens it herself when
the dolts standing around (or accompanying her) fail to act as

>6. Can you point to a female fighter (and in this case it must be a
>fighter) who exemplifies grace and state why using examples both from the
>field and from off the field?

Hmmm, defining grace as: (1) "Seemingly effortless beauty or charm of
movement, form, or proportion" I would say that to name those who do
would make this missive much to long and tedious. (2) "Skill at
avoiding the enept or clumsy course; [most necessary in fighting,
wouldn't you say?]  a sense of fitness or propriety." this could
eleminate a few ladies but right now I can thing of none.

>7. Do you believe that the SCA values grace equally with chivalry? 

Grace is included in our concept of Chivalry, is it not?

>8. Would grace be a consideration when evaluating a woman for squireship or
>knighthood? Why or why not?

Knighthood, yes. Grace and gracious conduct should be a consideration.
The evaluation for squireship should be the province of the knight
doing the evaluation.

>9. Should grace be a consideration when evaluating a woman for squireship
>or knighthood? Why or why not?

Same answer.

>This should get some interesting dialogue going...don't flame me too hard.
>Respectfully submitted

Flame?!?  From our gracious readers?  Surely you jest :)



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