[Ansteorra] Here is a question that has been asked often

Brian Martin bm3876 at sbc.com
Mon Oct 28 08:43:41 PST 2002

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Mahee asked: "What makes a Knight, a Laurel, or a Pelican?"

Pendaran's response:

That's easy: the Crown makes them! Seriously, this is like asking "What is a
Lion of Ansteorra?" - you can ask ten people that question and get ten
different answers. Sure, there are obvious qualities needed to be made a
peer (or lion), but there are intangibles that go into it that are
difficult, sometimes impossible to define. For example, a person must be a
good fighter to be made a knight, but there have been guys who could beat
most of the knights on the field for whom I would never have voted in the
circle because they lacked the other qualities of a knight.

So what are the tangibles for a peer? Keeping in mind that this is only my
opinion, a peer must have/do the following:

- Travel and be known throughout the kingdom
- Fight/work/create art to the standard of the relevant circle
- Teach
- Be a leader
- Have some amount of activity within and/or knowledge the other key
activities within the SCA
	(For example: a potential knight should be doing some work and
should be familiar with and/or somewhat active within
	the arts.  The inverse is true for potential pelicans & laurels.)
 - Probably a few others that aren't coming to mind right now
- Be a peer - which brings us to the intangibles!

Intangibles - this is the sticky bit. I once heard a person say in a peerage
circle that a candidate didn't "feel" like a peer. What does that mean? What
does a peer feel like? Squishy? Firm? Dense? (I think that holds true in my
case.) While that may not have been the best wording to use, I understood
what the person meant. There are certain indefinable qualities that a person
must have to be a peer, and those qualities are different to everyone. There
are some people that we can all agree on: I can't imagine that anyone
doesn't agree that Kein is a great knight, or that Hillary a great pelican
or that Fritz a great laurel. But there are some peers who are great in the
minds of some and terrible in the minds of others.

This may sound like a cop out, but as I sit and think about the intangible
qualities of peerage, I'm reminded of the quote by a Supreme Court justice
that was made when discussing pornography. He stated that "I can't define
pornography, but I know it when I see it". While I am reticent to compare
the peerages with pornography, I think that the quote above does apply.

So there are my rambling thoughts,

-----Original Message-----
From: Mahee [mailto:mahee_of_acre at yahoo.com]
Sent: Monday, October 28, 2002 8:47 AM
To: ansteorra at ansteorra.org
Subject: [Ansteorra] Here is a question that has been asked often

I am looking for the idealistic answer. Thank you for taking time to
answer them.

Private as well as public responces are appreciated.

your humble servant,

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