Investiture of a Duchess
Ceremonial of the Kingdom of An Tir
Version: 12th Night, XXXVII (2003)


The Duchess and her Retinue shall arrange themselves as follows:


The scroll, coronet, and rose may be carried upon pillows, if desired. This party may be followed by a group of supporters.

At the Queen's command, the party may enter court, approach the Throne and bow:

DUCAL HERALD: May it please Your Majesties, your loyal subject, _______________, having by her beauty, grace, and virtue twice inspired her champion(s) to win for her the Crown of this Kingdom, reigned as Queen, and descended from the Throne, has thus earned the rank and title of a Duchess of this Realm. She now makes bold to approach Your Majesties that she may receive the title, and be invested with the other dignities of this high estate.

The Rose-bearer will present the Rose to Her Majesty.

ROSE-BEARER: In token of her loyalty to the Crown and the Throne of the Kingdom, Countess _______________ here yields this rose into Your Majesty's keeping, as token of her past estate as Queen, and her membership in the Order of the Rose.

The Rose-bearer returns to her place.

COURT HERALD: Approach the Throne, noble Countess.

The incipient Duchess shall kneel before the Queen.

COURT HERALD: Let all the duchesses, here present, come forward to witness this joyful event.

They shall range themselves to either side of the incipient duchess.


QUEEN: Let the Scroll of Arms be read.

Presenting the Scroll to the Court Herald, the bearer resumes her place.

COURT HERALD: Hear and attend, all ye, throughout the Knowne World, that from this day hence _______________, having twice borne the burden of the Crown of An Tir, shall bear the title of Duchess. We, _______________ and _______________, King and Queen of An Tir, do acknowledge this and do affirm her right to bear by Letters Patent: [blazon]* and to bear above the shield a gold strawberry-leaf coronet, the shield encircled by a wreath of alternating gold hearts points to center and gold heraldic roses barbed and leaved vert seeded gules. In witness whereof, We do here set Our hand and seal, this __________ day of __________, Anno Societatis __________, being __________ Gregorian.
_______________, King of An Tir _______________, Queen of An Tir

*If the new Duchess doesn't have registered arms, the herald shall read: " . . . We do affirm her right to bear by Letters Patent such suitable and unique Arms as, by consulting with Us and Our heralds, she shall choose, and to bear above . . .".


QUEEN: Duchess _______________, it pleases Us greatly that you receive this Accolade at Our Hands.

DUCHESS: My Liege, From your Hand I right gladly receive it.

And the Queen shall kiss the Duchess first upon the left cheek, then upon the right.


Then the Queen calls for the coronet.

QUEEN: Let the Ducal Coronet be brought forth.

The coronet-bearer kneels before the Queen, and then returns to her place. If the new Duke is participating, the Queen shall call him forward.

QUEEN: My Lord Duke, it would please Us greatly if you would crown your lady with the coronet of her new estate.

Taking the coronet from the hands of the Queen, the Duke shall place it upon the Duchess' head, saying:

DUKE: As it was my delight to win for you the Crown of An Tir, so it is today my exceeding joy to give you this coronet of a duchess of the Realm of An Tir.

But if the new Duke is not participating (or if the new Duchess' lord is not a duke) the Queen shall give the coronet to the King, who crowning the new Duchess, shall say:

KING: Be henceforth Duchess _______________, in this Our Realm and the Knowne World, and wear this coronet in token of your estate.

Rising, the Duchess shall receive from the Queen two roses.

QUEEN: Receive these roses, my lady Duchess, and bear them henceforth, as you have heretofore, with grace and dignity.

DUCHESS: My Lady Queen, upon my honor I pledge to do so.

The Queen will hand the Duchess the Scroll, and if the Queen be a Duchess, She shall embrace the Duchess, and congratulate her. If the Queen is not a Duchess, then the senior Duchess present shall perform the following rite:

QUEEN OR SENIOR DUCHESS: Welcome, Sister _______________, to our right noble estate.

Then as the duchesses present congratulate their new sister, the Court herald will exhort the cheers of the people.


If the new Duke has participated in the investiture of his lady, he shall swear fealty to the Crown with her. But if he has not, then she may swear by herself at this time. Or if her lord will be made a Count, she may stand to the Queen's left, and wait to swear with him.

HERALD: (My Lord Duke and) My lady Duchess is it your desire to swear fealty to Their Majesties?


After (they or) she kneel before the King and Queen the herald says:

COURT HERALD: Do you now swear fealty to _______________ and _______________, your undoubted King and Queen, that you will obey their lawful commands in all matters that concern this Realm, and as you have ruled and received the oaths of the people, do you in turn swear faith to the Crown and Kingdom of An Tir? And, being mindful that the honor of the Realm springs from your own deeds, do you swear that you shall treat those of every degree with chivalry and courtesy, so long as Their Majesties remain Sovereigns of An Tir?

(DUKE AND) DUCHESS: I so swear.

KING: And We, for Our part, do swear fealty to this (Duke and) Duchess of An Tir, and promise to protect and defend (them) (her) and (their) (her) household(s) with all Our power, so long as We remain Sovereigns of An Tir. So say We, _______________, King of An Tir.

QUEEN: And so say We, _______________, Queen of An Tir.

Then (they) she shall be given leave to depart, and the herald will exhort the cheers of the populace.

Mail copies of the ceremony to the King, Queen, Crown Prince, and Crown Princess along with the coronation ceremony.

Remind the Crown Princess to bring two roses for the new Duchess, and remind the Queen to bring a rose to give to the new Queen.

Learn which title the Duchess will use (Duchess, Herzogin, Duquesa, etc.).

Be sure that the Ducal retinue will be ready to go at the start of the First Court.

Have a blazon of the new Duchess' arms for the Scroll.

SCA Herald's office badge: Vert, two crossed trumpets Or. Back to the An Tir College of Heralds

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It is not a corporate publication of the Society for Creative Anachronism, Incorporated, and does not delineate SCA policies.

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Updated: September 26, 2003