[Ansteorra] Vigils was: Vigils for White Scarves

Elizabeth Crouchet elizabeth at crouchet.com
Tue May 8 09:06:10 PDT 2007

As Xene said, she and Llewellyn spent some time alone with each other
and in chapel before they became landed Baron and Baroness. I think that
is a perfect time to sit a traditional vigil, to seek peace, advice and
contemplate what you are about to do. The job begs for it for the sanity
and success of both the members of the barony and those about to take
the coronets.

I'd like to see more landeds do this. Also more Bridegrooms. I wish it
was not so exclusively associated with peerages in the SCA and this

I do not see it as necessary for the job of a Laurel or Pelican as those
are such individual journies. But the celebrations we have come to do as
part of or the whole of some vigils are richly deserved and to be
continued for the pleasure we all get in celebrating our friend's


Sir Lyonel Oliver Grace wrote:
> Salut cozyns,
> snip
>> From an historic perspective--both Medieval and SCA histories--the whole 
> vigil furor surprises me. Medievally speaking, the vigil as part of
> the knighting ceremony grew out of the establishment and proliferation
> of the orders of militant canons (Templars, Hospitallers, Teutonic,
> and so forth). A canon was expected to sit vigil before elevation to
> adept status just like any monk, nun, or priest would do, and that
> eventually became a requisite step in many knighting ceremonies (there
> were many variations). That incorporation did not, however, make
> vigils a perquisite of the Chivalry. Anyone could sit vigil, and many
> did for various life-changing events: journeymen testing for mastery,
> bridegrooms before their weddings, palmers before going on pilgrimage.
> Also, medieval vigils were a lot less social and celebratory than
> ours--typically a night spent alone in a chapel praying and
> contemplating the life change in question.
> SCA-ically speaking, vigils have not always been the norm. When I was
> knighted in 1991, I had only seen one vigil (in the East Kingdom two
> years earlier). No one offered the option, and I didn't think to ask
> (of course, I was in a state of shock at the time). The next four
> knightings I saw in Atenveldt all included vigils. I did not see a
> vigil for a Laurel or Pelican until I came to Ansteorra. The
> Midrealmers say they began doing vigils at Pennsic 10 (26 years ago),
> and the East appears to have begun theirs at the same time. Across the
> various kingdoms, vigils have become the norm for the peerages over
> the past fifteen to twenty-six years. I've also heard that a few
> unbelted Crowns sat vigil on the eve of coronation. Ideologically,
> then, I can see why a vigil has become synonymous with "elevation to
> peerage," but I still don't see that it need be so.
> En Lyonel 

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