A while back, I was in the process of creating
my Avatar, when I ran into what I considered a problem. I
had decided to base my Avatar on an actual historic figure,
Asta Gudbrandsdatter, the mother of two Viking kings. She
was the mother of St. Olaf and of Harald III the Hard, and
lived a thousand years ago. As a mother of two kings and herself
a princess, I naturally decided to choose the Noble Order
as her Order. However, the problem came when I looked at the
titles of rank. All of them are very masculine, and my Avatar
is a woman.
I originally took my complaint to Chis Clark, and he suggested
that I write to Gary Gygax to see what he would suggest. I
did this and Gary wrote me back saying, "Now, what kind
of role-player are you?" I realize that role-players
should be able to adapt to any type of role. However, I am
not a very experienced role-player. I hadn't played for many
years (about 20 years actually!) and was just in the process
of rediscovering the fun of role-playing!
Anyway, Gary went on and gave me a list
of some feminine changes that could be used for the Noble
Order. Some of the titles remained the same and some had changes.
Gary's list for the feminine equivalents of the Rank titles
of the Noble Order goes as follows:
Knight (Dame, but...Spencer had Britomart
as a "knight", so)
...and that takes up to 2nd Rank...
Gary also wrote, "First we must deal with the fact that
historically speaking virtually all active nobles were males.
Indeed there are some outstanding female ones, of course.
That's true of Noblewomen "born", but not of those
climbing the ranks, so to speak....In general, I assumed that
males playing female Avatars, and females doing likewise,
would simply assume the Rank titles given or else make adjustments
similar to those noted above. In all, to remain anywhere near
historical standards so as to maintain some degree of verisimilitude
the rank titles given are about all I can do. As with military
Ranks, they are pretty well "gender neutral" in
all-or as close as I can come and still be historically grounded
I thought there might be other players out there who may have
run into a similar problem as myself, and who might benefit
from what Gary had to say on the matter. I hope this helps
you out the way it helped me. I also want to thank Gary for
the time he took to help out someone he didn't even know.
I now realize that if I ever have a similar problem with feminine
vs. masculine titles, that I can make my own changes. The
game is flexible enough to be able to