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Disc: What is a knight
Phillip Bell asks what is a knight?
You will never get a single answer to that one. I've been writing and
teaching on chivlary subjects for several years, mostly period stuff, but the
question of what makes a good SCA knight always arises in relation to period
I won't presume to say I know the criteria for becoming a knight, but I will
say that the best knights I know are the ones who may have lost their
illusions, but they haven't lost their ideals. They want their participation
in the SCA to be more than sticks and shields. As a result, the best knights
are generally not the best fighters because they take time for pursuits other
than fighting. They sing, dance, read books, build furniture, hold local
office, attend the ladies, and have friends outside the immediate circle of
fighters. They are not constantly reinforcing their position among the 'big
dogs' because that isn't what is important. They take pride in their
appearance and performance on the field, but it doesn't define who they are.
The best knights love and honor knighthood because it gives them a platform
from which to live and teach their skills, not because it confers status on
them. They instruct their squires according to the squire's ability and not
to an artificial standard. They receive service with courtesy and respect,
and return it to the giver. The best knights realize that while they have
earned their knighthood, it does not automatically convey virtue; that must
be learned as well. They know being called 'Sir' does not automatically make
you chivalrous by nature.
These are the knights I hold in honor and point out as examples of chivalry.
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