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What Is the Role of the Order of the Laurel in Æthelmearc?
by Mistress Arianna of Wynthrope


The Laurels of Æthelmearc consider the disseminating of information on medieval and renaissance arts and sciences to be our most important task.   Each of us was recognized by the Crown not only for our skills as artisans, researchers and/or performers, but also for our dedication to teaching those skills to others. 


Teaching can take many forms.  While teaching at an Academy or schola is the most obvious forum for transmitting knowledge, not all of us are comfortable standing in front of a classroom full of people.  If you are interested in our art, we are interested in telling and showing you what we know.  The exchange might take the form of formal classes at events, workshops in our home group, one-on-one training (either formally or informally) or written articles in newsletters. 

Finding the Right Laurel

If you are interested in learning from a Laurel, you can browse through the Æthelmearc Laurel web page to find the Master or Mistress nearest you whose area of skill and interests match yours.  Don’t be shy - contact that Laurel and ask for information and help!  Most Laurels have a passion for their arts and are eager to share what they know.


Laurels who wish to establish or recognize a special relationship with a particular individual may ask that person to become an apprentice.  But don’t think you must be apprenticed to someone to learn from them, or to become a Laurel yourself!  Most of us will gladly teach anyone who approaches us politely, with interest and enthusiasm.  There are as many ways to be an apprentice as there are Laurels - that topic is covered in this article - but if you wish to become someone's apprentice, it's a good idea to get to know the Laurel well and also to seek the advice of others before you make a commitment.

Peer Qualities

As Peers of the Society, most of us also believe it is our duty to set an example of courtly and honorable behavior, and to teach those values to our apprentices and associates.  This does not mean we are perfect.  We have good days and bad, and while we try to be kind and considerate, sometimes we get busy or cranky just like you.  Please forgive us and understand that we are human, too.


While people often speak of “the Laurels” or “the Chivalry” or “the Pelicans,” please also remember that we are individuals.  We may share a passion for our arts, but our personalities and viewpoints are as diverse as those arts. None of us individually presumes to speak for the order as a whole, and just because one Laurel (or more) holds a particular viewpoint does not mean that “the Order” does too.

Laurel-sponsored Activities

As an Order, the Laurels of Æthelmearc occasionally sponsor special activities at events, like Artisans’ Exhibits or Forums.  These are intended as venues in which artisans, no matter their rank, can display their work and their research, and receive feedback, advice and support from the Laurels as well as the populace.  The Order has also provided “Ask a Laurel” tables at Academy sessions.  Don’t be intimidated by a gaggle of Laurels chatting together - we’re talking to each other only because you haven’t come to talk to us yet!  Please jump right in with questions, ideas, and samples of your work.


This is the recognized website for the Laurels of the Kingdom of Aethelemearc, of the Society for Creative Anachronism, Inc- and is maintained by Mistress Rhiannon y Bwa . This site may contain electronic versions of the group's governing documents. Any discrepencies between the electronic version of any information on this site and the printed version that is available from the originating office will be decided in favor of the printed version.

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