[Sca-cooks] Largesse: What to avoid.

Judith Epstein judith at ipstenu.org
Mon Aug 10 08:58:19 PDT 2009

On Aug 10, 2009, at 10:40 AM, Michael Gunter wrote:

> I think it depends on what you mean by largess.
> Are you making gift baskets or items to be given to the
> Crown to use Themselves or for Them to give out?
> BIG difference there.

I was talking about an item for an individual to give to another  
individual. When the item is supposed to be donated to a largesse  
"pool" to be re-gifted by royals or nobles to others willy-nilly, I  
think even more caution is warranted, especially in the food category  
and the religious item category. It's a pretty horrid offense not to  
accept something given from the heart, like largesse, but for some  
it's just as bad to accept the gift and have others see you accepting  
it. (Yes, I'm thinking of myself, here -- I couldn't accept a  rosary,  
no matter how nicely offered, because I'm not religiously permitted to  
accept that type of thing. But because it's considered such a breach  
of etiquette to refuse a gift, I'd be stuck looking very rude, because  
I would give precedence to my religious principles over SCA etiquette.  
A person who has particularly severe allergies might be in the same  
position, with regard to largesse of foods.

I know very well that those who offer largesse are trying to convey  
gratitude, warmth, welcome, and appreciation. They're doing out of  
kindness and magnanimity, and wouldn't dream of offering something  
that could place someone (like me, but not limited to me) in a very  
uncomfortable or socially untenable position. They wouldn't make a  
gift that could be so problematic, if they only knew that it would be  
such an issue for the recipient. I mention this in order to bring it  
to attention that a gift of this nature could provide a great social  
stumbling block for someone whose religious or health issues could  
very well require them to refuse such a gift.

Judith / no SCA name yet

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