New Laurel in AEthelmearc

Sir Mord the Green proudly announces that his lady wife, Maria Agrissa Sgourina (formerly and more widely known as Baroness Mairi ni Raghaillaigh), was inducted into the Order of the Laurel by Their Majesties of AEthelmearc on Saturday, July 17, 2004 AS XXXIX, in the Barony of St. Swithin’s Bog.

Maria was honored for her research, especially in Byzantine and Sassanid clothing and culture before the year 1000 CE, and her efforts to share that knowledge which was reflected in a ceremony dating from the 10th century.

The following is from the court report:

“Their Majesties invited His Excellency, Master Charles O'Connor into Their presence, and allowed him to serve as the Official of the Ceremony for the Promotion of the Zoste Patrikia. He called forth the Patrikias, on this day also known as the Order of the Laurel. He then led Her Excellency, Mairi ni Raghaillaigh into court, and presented her to the Sovereigns. Their Majesties presented Mairi with her elevation robes, and bid her attendants dress her appropriately. This being done, the Sovereigns heard the counsel of Master Remus Fletcher; Her Grace, Syr Rowan de la Garnisson; Her Grace, Sedalia MacNare; and Her Grace, Maurya Etain Sableswan, and agreed that Mairi was most worthy to be made a Patrikia. Their Majesties presented Mairi with the symbols of her new rank, being a ring bearing the wreath of the Order of the Laurel (the gift of Her Grace, Sedalia MacNare), and a cloak (fashioned by Duchess Meirwen uerch Owein with the assistance of Master Kenhelm the Deceptive, Duchess Rowan de la Garnisson, and Mistress Thora Sharptooth). Mairi was introduced to the populace by her new name, Patrikia Maria Agrissa Sgourina; she, in turn, thanked the populace and the Sovereigns for the honor done unto her. Maria was presented the Record Book from her vigil, and Their Majesties received her Oath of Fealty (based upon a 6th century Byzantine functionary’s oath). Maria then gave gifts to the Sovereigns, Their Heirs, Their Excellencies, the Patrikias and the populace. Scroll by THLady Alienor Russeal, text by His Excellency, Sir Mord Hrutsson the Green, upon vellum prepared by THLord AEngus MacBain. (Maria's ceremony was almost entirely based upon chapter 59 of the 10th c. "Book of Ceremonies" of Constantin VII Porphyrogenete.)