Ælflæd takes Cathyn as her Protégé
February 27, A.S. XXXIII (1999)
Russian Winter, al-Barran

AE to witnesses: For many years Cathyn and I have discussed off and on a student/teacher relationship. For reasons of distance we did not pursue it, although there were periods of teaching and learning without a bond.

AE to Cathyn: Cathyn, now that you have returned to the Outlands, will you commit yourself to learning and to service as my protege?

Cathyn: [kneeling and handholding] If you would have me as your student, I am willing to learn.

Ælflæd: I will take care to maintain your faith and trust.

Cathyn: I will show my faith and trust in word and deed.

Ælflæd: I will give time and attention to your projects and fears and successes.

Cathyn: I will strive to be worthy of that time and attention.

Ælflæd: Of all the things you might learn from me, I most hope you will become a peacemaker and a teacher. You have a good start on this.

Cathyn: I will help you do these things until you think me worthy to do them on my own.

Ælflæd: Will you dedicate yourself to the study and practice of virtue?

Cathyn: I have no greater hope or desire than this.

Ælflæd: Then I will put your stated intention above our friendship if necessary, and will with all my heart and power aid you in that desire.

Cathyn: I will try to make your job easy

Ælflæd: Cathyn Fitzgerald, I accept you as my protege, with both hope and gratitude.
May your life continue to be
          opened by compassion
          activated by morality
          strengthened by patience
          and infused with joy.
As these qualities grow in you, accept them with modest humility.

Ælflæd: As you are a royal peer, I have chosen not to use a belt to symbolize our bond. Please wear this inscribed ring, then, to remind you of me and to inspire you toward greater compassion, modesty and joy.

[while putting the ring on:]
If you should ever lose this ring, keep its words in your heart.
If you should ever lose me, keep my words in your heart.

Cathyn: As in many cultures, this ring symbolizes the bond between us. Ever shall I uphold those ideals dear to us both. Keep this ring to remind you of the commitment I have to aid you in all matters within my power, and be your diligent student.

NOTES: Cathyn had a ring that had belonged to his dad (on his right hand, in this photo). I had it inscribed with "compassion, modesty, joy." It had a ruby. He had wanted to try to make a ring, so from wax cast, he made a gold ring with a little ruby, and I wore that during the time of our formal association. Cathyn has both rings now.

I had exchanged rings with Helena the Fortunate, giving her a plain silver ring that Beau Marishka had given me for service, when she was baroness of al-Barran. We found a little fancier ring for me to wear while Helena wore hers. Helena also wore a gold belt.

Cathyn was my second student, then, for whom I wore a ring to remind me of the relationship. When AnneAliz was my student, we wore matching rings, as AnneAliz was also a Countess and for that reason, a belt seemed somewhat inappropriate. I know in some kingdoms it's done but it hadn't been done much if any in the Outlands.

Writings on Modesty * More on Cathyn * Later Ceremonies: Karl and Kymma

AElflaed's SCA site