swans – some terminology

i know i said early on that i wasn’t planning to spend a lot of time systematically explaining the terminology used here. but i realised today that i never even mentioned what the term “swan” means in the vampire community. considering that i chose to name this blog “being a swan” i reckon that dedicating a few words to the subject would not be inappropriate.

at the very basic level, swans are non-vampiric people who associate with and form part of the vampire community. as there are many different people who do so, we use colours to distinguish between roles and/or attitudes to our vampire friends and associates.

the earliest term used, i believe it originated with the strigoi vii, is “black swan” to designate friends, family, and other associates of vampires who are supportive allies. this includes donors, of course. it is generally supposed that the term was chosen because black swans are rare creatures (at least in the northern hemisphere) and carry much of the positive imagery which “normal” swans do. to find the actual origins of the term, one would probably have to delve deep into the history and philosophy of the strigoi vii, which is not something i intend to do. the early association of the term with the strigoi vii and the sanguinarium led to considerable resistance to its use, though my impression is that the term has become widely understood, if not accepted and used.

within the group of black swans, donors are distinguished by the type of donoring they do. crimson swans donate blood. crystal swans donate energy. and amber swans donate both blood and energy.

the term “white swan” seems to be the most recent. it is used in opposition to black swan to designate people who are involved with vampires but who do not support them or even actively work against them. note that this doesn’t include just anybody who is “against” vampires, but is limited to those who actually are members of and/or interact with the vampire community.

personally i rather like to be called a swan. compared to some expressions which are used (thankfully this is rare these days) to designate donors, e.g. cattle or blood dolls, swan implies a certain nobility and mythology. it doesn’t hurt that swans are beautiful.

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