On SCA Titles and Problematic Words

Originally published on July 4, 2020.

So this was spurred by a comment on a different post, and it got me to thinking about how, even though we’re trying to create cultures and environments that ended long before the enslavement of humans and the repercussions of doing so tore this country apart, the vast majority of SCAdians are living in a country subsumed in systemic racism and the consequences of it. Thus, this post.

I’m still a big fan of Caussidicus.

So for the few of you who haven’t heard, there’s an ongoing discussion about the titles “Master” and “Mistress” and how they bother people in certain ways – there’s a lot of women in general who don’t like Mistress, and Master is problematic on multiple levels.

I’ve been thinking about this on my own, and doing a bunch of 100% not guaranteed to be accurate, historical, or appropriate translating using an Old English translator, google translate, and a thesaurus to come up with potential words that could be used as titles.

I tried to think of words that indicated what I do as a pelican, and I looked for Old English and Latin because that’s what’s appropriate for my persona… I think.

I haven’t tried to do any validation of the use of these words in this manner. It’s all just very much the beginning of my thoughts on the issue. I still really like Magister, which is most frequently translated as “Teacher” – but also translates as “Master”. But maybe there are options below that will work? I don’t know. So, I’m asking for commentary.

I will point out that just like with arms or names, just because something isn’t passed by the College of Heralds doesn’t mean I can’t use it, it just means it can’t be official.

note: these are -for-me-. If any of them work for other peers, then that’s grand, but I’m not (at this point anyway) trying to make some kind of exhaustive list. I’m just looking for something I can use that I can be happy with.

Latin – Rough Translation
Consiliario – Counselor
Oraculi – Guide
Curagendarius – Overseer, Manager
Praevians – Patron
Praesul – Patron
Caussidicus – Advocate, Pleader of causes
Amicus – philanthropist

Old English – Rough Translation
þeahtere – Counselor
Hléowdryhten – Patron
þingere – Advocate
Rihtend – One who Arranges Matters
Rædesmann – Counselor, Advisor
Wicnere – Officer, Minister, Steward, Manager
Héahleornere – High Teacher
Lársmið – Teacher, Counselor