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Master of the Hunt terminology

Started by JediMatt1000, September 18, 2019, 10:32:47 PM

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JediMatt1000

Really enjoying the first book so far. I have heard it said in maybe a couple of threads in the forum here that much of what Sir Adam is; is based upon ceremonial magic. Now, I am not sure what the "Master of the Hunt" type of term is based on. There are a couple of places I have come across this term and I am about halfway through book one right now.
"Be the change you wish to see."

DesertRose

#1
I'm not entirely certain; I suspect that it has something to do with the fact that esoteric/occult study groups historically needed to keep their workings secret from anyone outside the group, and that "Master of the Hunt" phrase feels to me like fox-hunting terminology having been used as a cover so that, should someone uninitiated overhear a conversation not meant for their ears, it wouldn't arouse alarm.

A quick Google search tells me that the correct title for the person in charge of a fox hunt is Master of the Foxhounds (abbreviated MFH), but I doubt "Master of the Hunt" would be considered an insult in the context of fox-hunting.

This question might be a good one to ask KK next Sunday at chat, as she has lived in Ireland and now lives in a part of Virginia where horse ownership and hunting aren't too unusual.

Edited to correct a grammar error I just caught
"If having a soul means being able to feel love, loyalty, and gratitude, then animals are better off than a lot of humans."

James Herriot (James Alfred "Alfie" Wight), when a human client asked him if animals have souls.  (I don't remember in which book the story originally appeared.)

Laurna

It might be fun in Sunday chat to ask KK what she envisions for the title of Master of the Hunt.
Adam is one of the most senior of the Adepts. As you read on, you will learn that there are others nearly equal to him, however they have other life long purposes that help serve the Light, the goodness of mankind. Adam is devoted to the Light. His huntsman are like the knights of old, being the guardians to Good and to the Light. Their job is to protect their fellow humans against those who practice the dark arts.
I hope you enjoy reading that series.
May your horses have wings and fly!

Shiral

I was one of those horse-mad kids. For a time, I went to a summer day camp that included horse care and riding, and one year, our counselor gave us some basic fox-hunting lore.  We eventually staged a fake "fox hunt" (Although we did it on foot, since nobody there was a secure enough rider to go galloping across country without a potential insurance nightmare.) 
Anyway, according to what I remember, the person in charge of a local hunting group is the Hunt Master. Usually, they attain this status based on seniority, knowledge and horsemanship. 
The Huntsman controls the hunting hounds (usually at least 12). The huntsman is assisted by the Whippers-in, who help him or her keep the pack from getting too widely scattered.
The Fieldmaster (who may or may not also be the Hunt Master) rides in front of the Field, which is comprised of all the people riding in that day's hunt. It's VERY bad form to ride ahead of the Field Master, who needs to be able to keep in seeing and hearing distance of the Huntsman and the pack. It's also good field etiquette to allow riders who have more seniority to ride ahead of you.

So now you're ready (Sort of!) to go hunting on horseback, but possibly not to solve Arcane crimes. I suspect in Arcane terms, the Master of the Hunt is also chosen in terms of seniority and knowledge, and also their ability in the Ars Magica.  I know that Philippa initiated Adam to the Hunt presumably when Adam was a young adult, and wonder if she might have been Master or Mistress of the Hunt at that time. She certainly seems to still be a powerful Adept.  I infer she returned to America after Adam inherited his title from his father, and decided it was an opportune moment to take a secondary role, and let Adam become Master of the Hunt.  In terms of seniority, it seems that should have been Noel, but perhaps Adam was on his way to becoming a more powerful Adept, and Noel was content to become, or remain, his Second.

Melissa
You can have a sound mind in a healthy body--Or you can be a nanonovelist!

JediMatt1000

My curiosity somewhat got the better of me...lol...I was up pretty late last night researching this terminology and came to some rather interesting leads. The Adept appears to be passed around to various FreeMason lodges, as quite a bit of the subject matter seems to be Masonic in origin. The Lodge of the Lynx was a purported "hunting lodge" in the book, and I wanted to chase this story to see where the eventual outcome was to be had, and it did not go that way for me. From what I gathered, it appears to me that "hunting lodges" are playing a bit in the hit tv show "Supernatural", Sam & Dean's grandfather had some involvement in one of these, and thus played into the whole "legacies" storyline arc. I forget which season that was, but Jen and I were avid Supernatural watchers in the show's heyday. We don't have network or cable television anymore, but I have heard that the show has since ended. Anyone else find similarities with these? I do hope to make chat this Sunday, as this is sure to be an interesting convo with KK. 
"Be the change you wish to see."

JediMatt1000

TV is overrated anyways, I'd be much happier reading.
"Be the change you wish to see."

DesertRose

I never followed Supernatural (I'm not much of a TV watcher at all and never really have been), but certainly a good deal of the concepts of the Adept series are Masonic or at minimum Masonic-adjacent.  (See also, more explicitly, Two Crowns for America and to a lesser degree, Lammas Night, which ties in to the Adept series as well.)

I don't actually know that much about Masonic traditions personally; I have a few friends who are Freemasons, and my own biological father and his father before him were Scottish Rite Freemasons.  (So I suppose I could technically apply to join the Order of the Eastern Star.  ;) )

However, clearly the group led by Adam Sinclair has existed in some form for a number of generations, and even today, many groups who study, teach, and practice esoteric traditions do not speak openly of their Work before the uninitiated, but there are often times when something needs to be communicated too urgently to wait for privacy, thus coded language, which is, I suspect, the origin of Sir Adam's Master of the Hunt title.
"If having a soul means being able to feel love, loyalty, and gratitude, then animals are better off than a lot of humans."

James Herriot (James Alfred "Alfie" Wight), when a human client asked him if animals have souls.  (I don't remember in which book the story originally appeared.)

JediMatt1000

Thank you for sharing that DR. The Adept is shaping up to be yet another epic series by KK. I just finished the Deryni series - and I must say, when we say anything about "epic" our dear Queen responds with "hold my beer" basically lol...I suppose I should have started with Lammas Night before book one of the Adept, I did see the reading order thread on the forum only after I had started it. Might actually give a better foundation for the events happening "behind the scenes" so to speak.
"Be the change you wish to see."

JediMatt1000

My own grand-dad was a Master Mason too, but sadly he passed away long before I was to the legal age of discernment and age where we all have questions that we'd like answers to.
"Be the change you wish to see."

WindyCat

Master of the Hunt is a term I've known for 40 yrs, since I started studying the Celtic Pantion. It refers to Cernunnos, the Horned God.

This is what I found when looking for a brief description/definition:
Quote"Cernunnos is a horned god found in Celtic mythology. He is connected with male animals, particularly the stag in rut, and this has led him to be associated with fertility and vegetation. Depictions of Cernunnos are found in many parts of the British Isles and Western Europe. He is often portrayed with a beard and wild, shaggy hair. He is, after all, the lord of the forest. With his mighty antlers, Cernunnos is a protector of the forest and master of the hunt."

DesertRose

Quote from: WindyCat on November 01, 2020, 07:03:51 PM
Master of the Hunt is a term I've known for 40 yrs, since I started studying the Celtic Pantion. It refers to Cernunnos, the Horned God.

This is what I found when looking for a brief description/definition:
Quote"Cernunnos is a horned god found in Celtic mythology. He is connected with male animals, particularly the stag in rut, and this has led him to be associated with fertility and vegetation. Depictions of Cernunnos are found in many parts of the British Isles and Western Europe. He is often portrayed with a beard and wild, shaggy hair. He is, after all, the lord of the forest. With his mighty antlers, Cernunnos is a protector of the forest and master of the hunt."

Well, now, that's interesting!  Especially given the rituals in Lammas Night.

But I wonder how that ties into Adam and his Lodge, because everyone there is fairly explicitly Christian (although they all seem to be the type of people who understand there are multiple paths to the Light, as it were).
"If having a soul means being able to feel love, loyalty, and gratitude, then animals are better off than a lot of humans."

James Herriot (James Alfred "Alfie" Wight), when a human client asked him if animals have souls.  (I don't remember in which book the story originally appeared.)

WindyCat

I don't know how it connects to Adam, it's been a few years since I last read the series. When I get a chance to reread the series I may be able to answer the question.

Laurna

Your description of Cernunnos reminded me of Herne the Hunter as betrayed in the 1984 BBC version of Robin of Sherwood. And low and behold I looked that up in Wikipedia and it says under Herne the Hunter: "A shamanic figure who often incarnates a forest spirit representing the powers of light and goodness, inspiring and protecting the Hooded Man. Carpenter stated that Herne was based on the Pagan idea of the Horned God."

We know KK loves all things Celtic, so I am sure there is a connection. This makes me wonder if the Entity of Light that Adams goes to see in the spiritual plan is none other than the Horned God, himself.
May your horses have wings and fly!

WindyCat

I remember that series, made a point of watching every week.

Their version of Herne is different than the one I know, more like Cernunnos. Herne's a ghost, the leader of the Wild Ride, the boogie man used to frighten children to keep them in line. Herne is also English where Cernunnos is found through the Celtic lands. I learned about Cernunnos when I lived in Scotland, that may explain why I don't see Herne as a good entity. The ancient divisions were still present when I lived there.

drakensis

I gather that the tradition of the Huntsmen in various forms have been around for a very long time and has been informed by a great many viewpoints.

We do encounter an English equivalent during one book and their traditions are different in some ways so there's a great deal of diversity between groups.

It's also entirely possible that the "Master of the Hunt" title is a holdover from a time when they covered for their activities by pretending to be an avid group of fox-hunters or similar.