Alysoun, the Wife of Bath, is a legendary Boggan.

Overview Edit


Students of literature know her as the outspoken and controversial woman behind one of the most famous of Chaucer’s tales of Canterbury, but to the boggan kith in general and boggan women in particular, Alysoun, better known as the Wife of Bath, is much more than a literary figure. Indeed, over the centuries since she first inspired Chaucer to pick up his quill, she’s become something between a cultural icon and a revered ancestor for her kith, and is even honored with her own day of celebrations. Originally known as the Festival of Alysoun, and more recently simply as Shipping Day, it’s a bawdy and rambunctious holiday in late spring when boggans gather with an array of sweets and share the latest relationship gossip, then diagram elaborate interpersonal webs as they attempt to match their friends and relatives. Sometimes it’s taken seriously, a real mission to nurture true love or heal a broken heart, while sometimes it’s just to have fun imagining possible OTPs for the local lord.

Despite their reputation as a soft-spoken kith that spends their lives around the edges, a number of boggans are outspoken and rather enjoy commanding a room and attracting attention — so long as it’s not while they’re working. Alysoun has a reputation among boggans for precisely all those things. Proud of her handiwork, unafraid to be bold in both speech and habit in a time when women were punished for such deeds, and confident in everything she said and did, the Wife of Bath has become a more popular figure than ever in contemporary times. After all, women around the world have been making moves for years to be heard, to be unapologetic, and to take up space in a world they are told continually doesn’t belong to them. Boggans especially look to Alysoun and say boldly to the world that it simply isn’t true. Her legacy lives on today in the bold strides taken everywhere in the name of the self, and in those who don’t merely flout the patriarchy but tear it down with every assured step.

While an advocate for self-identity, Alysoun also has a reputation among boggans as one of their most prolific and successful matchmakers. Supposedly she was responsible for some of the most productive and politically powerful matches of her time, in addition to countless less political arrangements, and according to kith lore, both nobles and commoners would wait for months in order to have a seat in her parlor and lay out their lives for her to match with another. It’s even rumored that she made matches for the mortal nobility of her time, with nobles taking on disguises to appear in a humble merchant’s home. It’s a tale too good to subject to the discourtesy of research, and boggans still treasure the stories of her clever antics as she mended broken hearts and delivered poetic justice to wicked and unfaithful lovers.

Such was Alysoun’s impact, in fact, that her fellow boggans actively tracked her soul as it reincarnated — typically announced by the flurry of amazing matches and bawdy adventures that accompanied her appearance in a given lifetime — but she hasn’t had a confirmed reincarnation since the early twentieth century, and some are worried this means a dark fate befell her. Anyone who could sort the mystery would certainly earn a lot of goodwill from the kith, especially if they can show she’s alive and happy again. Even in her absence, boggans particularly gifted in bringing people together are often said to be touched by her, and those who enjoy making themselves heard and bringing out the confidence in others are said to share her fire. Whenever a group of such outspoken boggans are together, and especially a gathering of boggan women, she’s usually left a place and considered to be there in spirit.

And if she is out there now, boggans know it’s only a matter of time before she makes her mark once again.

References Edit

  1. CTD. Kithbook: Boggans, pp. 69-70.

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