Tyger of the East – Catrin o’r Rhyd Fôr

Mistress Catrin was being recognized as a Tyger of the East. Only one person may be so recognized and named as such during a reign. 

There was some conspiring and Thyra asked if I’d write the words for her scroll. I was given some inside information that Catrin had a strong connection to the allegorical play “The Marriage of Wit and Science” by John Redford, written in the 16th century. (You can read it here http://www.ancientgroove.co.uk/books/redford.html.)

I included nods to her arts in the theatre and mumming, in creating the Laurels vs Pelican’s event, and generally about how awesome we all think she is. I enjoyed referring to her as “Mistress Wit” — she is someone I greatly admire and am proud to call a friend.

Here is the scroll text that I created for her, very heavily based on the words of the play. I had the pleasure and honor to also read them in court. 


Friends, we thank you for these your pleasures,

Taken as chance to meet Our measures,

Speaks Brion, King of Eastern Lands

As Anna, Queen, joins voice and hands,

Give place, we say now for our adulation!

Give place, give place to earnest declamation!

 

Where is that Wit that we seek, then?

Behold! She kneeleth here, bereft of plan.

Yet, wont to help all, if that she can.

O Mistress Wit, how dost thou? What hath began?

Give place, we say now for our adulation!

Make space, make space for honest recreation!

 

Lo, know this artistic connoisseur

Under the name Catrin o’r Rhyd Fôr

Mark her dancing, her masking and mumming!

Amusement and puissance e’er coming

Her writing, her acting, daily and nightly;

Find more for the spirit than there? Not lightly!

 

Content us We may, since We be assigned,

To honor Wit and Wisdom that liveth, to Our mind.

 

She setteth not by fame, where We spy her.

She careth not what the world saith by her.

She setteth not by favour, whereby We try her

She careth not what the world saith or dareth vie her

She setteth nought by riches which doth show

She careth but for others as they come and go.

 

Indeed small cause is given to care of world’s favoring

When one walks her own path strong and unwavering.

 

When tediousness to ground hath smitten most

She doth quick up their hearts with joyful toast,

With such honest pastimes, sports or games –

Makes birds and leaves defend their names –

And not a one, with pastimes such,

Will be abused, little or much.

 

True honor cleaveth unto she,

Her devotion cleaveth unto We.

Projecting constant message of such sort

That We, for Our Ideals, not her comfort,

For their embodiment, We have brought here

To grant words of praise to Our love dear,

But also further, it is Our inclination pure

That before her own person, We may confer

Upon the lengthy deeds she will sustain

Yet ere We send her turned out again,

She shall to these fair duties be released,

In freedom, as newest Tyger of the East.

 

Beneath the winter’s early setting sun

On January 28 of the Society Year LI

In Stonmarche’s great Birka Hall

King Brion and Queen Anna in especial

Wish to their honourable council and then to all the rest

Such joy as long may rejoice them all the best.

 

Words by Aneleda Falconbridge based on 16th Century play “The Play of Wit and Science” by John Redford.  Calligraphy and Illumination by þóra Eiríksdóttir.

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