Bright Ideas and True Confessions: How and What to Do and Why


The Price of a Peerage

Comments on buying peerages are met with nervous laughter, and the last price I heard mentioned was $1500, which is about what I paid, I guess, for my Laurel, but I put much more into my Pelican, and I'm still paying. Now before anyone runs off saying "AElflaed says peerages can be bought," read on. You can't just plunk down money and be made a peer, but unwillingness to plunk any money down might prevent you from becoming one. Where is the plunking place? Certainly not the king, and not the other peers (who will see through that sort of business in a second, and bribery is not conducive to honor). Laurels spend their money in book shops, art supply, fabric, and music stores. Pelicans go to the photocopy shop, the post office, and look for filing cabinets at yard sales. The chivalry supports many rattan fields and armorers, and provides vehicles and the fuel to transport carfuls of people to tournaments and wars. These lists are certainly not exhaustive nor exclusive. How many times have you gone to the home of a peer to get information from books on hand, photocopies and older Society publications? Do you know any SCA artisans who have no shelves of reference books?

With careful planning, a public library might supply all your needs, and with luck you might begin to find silks and woolens at garage sales. Not all tournaments will be held in your shire, though, and the price of postage will probably not go down, so some expenses are unavoidable. Dedication to the Society will, in one way or another, produce an ever-improving collection of equipment, with the castoffs going to newer members who are improving their own. Through this passage come peers, whose works took tools, whose thoughts took form, and whose desires bore fruit, but not without a little cash up front.


Copyright © by Sandra Dodd, 1991
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