Héloise de Bruyères
Héloise de Bruyères
Purpure, a goat rampant Or and in chief three fleurs-de-lys argent
Lady Héloise de Bruyères has been a member of the populace of the Kingdom of Atlantia since A.S. XLIX (Anno Societatis 49 or 2014 C.E.)
She dabbles in many disciplines including archery, brewing, music, cheese- and soap-making.
She is best known as a principal member of the Knowne World Courtesans, a free confederation of SCAdians whose primary focus is historical sex work in period.
Her interests include historical cosmetics & hair care, as well as constructing transitional/late period garb from the Savoy region and surrounding area.
Lady Héloise, often called Ellie by her friends, was born at the Château de Menthon-Saint-Bernard on Lac d'Annecy while her parents were traveling with the Duke of Savoy, visiting the castle each summer on his way back to Chambéry following months of travel across the duchy to collect his yearly taxes and tributes from the other great houses of Savoy.
Her father was a merchant who was granted lands and titles after helping the Duke re-secure the Col du Petit Saint-Bernard following negotiations with representatives from the Kingdom of Sardinia and the Holy Roman Emperor, Frederick III.
Her parents, particularly her mother, had plans to wed Ellie to one of the sons of the Duke. At one point early in her childhood, there was even talk of a betrothal to Charles, the son of Charlotte of Savoy and King Louis. In time, Ellie was promised to Duke Philip's younger brother, François.
During the summer of Ellie's 15th birthday, she was horseback riding at Château Monfort with her friend Anne when they happened upon a handsome boy of 17 who said his name was René and that he was the son of the Duke.
Ellie laughed at the boy but René held firm, insisting he was the Duke's son, but that the Duke's lady wife was not his mother. He claimed his mother was a courtesan named Libera.
That day, Ellie and René began an affair. She later learned that René was very well known by the nickname the Grand Bastard of Savoy.
The torrid relationship finally came to light once it was discovered that Ellie was pregnant. Her betrothal to François was called off and René was sent south by the Duke to the city of Tende.
Ellie was sent to her mother's sister's family in Verona. The idea was for her to give birth at the nunnery of St. Ambrose, then become a nun. However, she lost the child not long after arriving in Verona, and was told she would never bear children again.
The nuns wanted her to work for her meals but being gently raised — without knowledge of how to run a proper household or do an honest day's work, not to mention being "spoiled goods" — they put her in touch with an "abbess" whose clients were big names among the condottieri and the church.
As a "lightly used" teenager, Ellie was the prize of the Magdalene home known as the "Abbaye des abeilles," or the Abbey of the Honeybees.
Already literate and fluent in French, Italian and Arpitan, the abbess dressed her in finery and introduced her to the captains of the condottieri and men of the church whose rank was bishop or above.
Ellie made many valuable contacts during her time at the abbey and once the abbess died, she took over operations and expanded the abbey's incomes to include a vineyard and a cheesemongery.
Ladies of the abbey who could no longer perform the work of their youth tended to these labors and fattened the coffers until the Abbaye des abeilles no longer needed the patronage of the church and the brutish mercenaries of Italy's northern city-states.
Offices & Positions
- Deputy Chatelaine, Barony of Marinus, December 2015
- Minister of Arts & Sciences, Barony of Marinus, August 2019
- “Hand-Sewing Eyelets” (Barony of Marinus) - Dec 17, 2015
- “Bilingual French/English SCA 101” (Pennsic XLV) - August 2016
- “Persona Development 101” (Barony of Marinus) - Nov 10, 2016
- “Doom of Naples: Rise of Syphilis” (University of Atlantia) - February 2019
Awards and Achievements
- 10/2015 - Award of the Capstan of Saint Marinus (Marinus)
- 05/2016 - Award of Arms (Atlantia)
- 05/2018 - Companion of the Opal (Atlantia)
- 10/2018 - Award of the Oaken Oar (Marinus)
- 03/2019 - Companion of the Coral Branch (Atlantia)
- 09/2019 - Award of the Herring (Atlantia)
- Won brewing competition sponsored by the Brothers of Woodside Priory at Inter-Baronial Twelfth Night (Tir-Y-Don) - January 2, 2016
- Entered brewing competition sponsored by Royal Brewer at Ruby Joust (Caer Mear) - May 25, 2019
- Knowne World Courtesans - August 2017 to present
- Period Heroes (SCA Edition) - December 2017 to present
- Atlantian Courtesan Guild - April 2018 to present (chartered August 2019)
- Royal Retainer for Her Majesty Atlantia - Crown Tourney - November 2014
- Co-organizer, Knowne World Courtesans Bacchanal - Pennsic XLVI - Aug 2017
- Co-organizer, Soiree of the Seven Deadly Sins - War of the Wings - Oct 2017
- Co-organizer, Knowne World Courtesans Salon - 12th Night - January 2018
- Ministre de Toilette - Ruby Joust (Caer Mear) - May 2018
- Co-organizer, Knowne World Courtesans Bacchanal - Pennsic XLVII - Aug 2018
- Deputy Autocrat, Rip Rap War II: It Takes Two To Parley – September 2018
- Co-organizer, Knowne World Courtesans Bacchanal - Pennsic XLVIII - Aug 2019
- Autocrat, Rip Rap War III: Guts, Gold, Glory - September 2019