But ladies, who are we?

What is the first thing you think of when you hear “North Penn?” I am assuming you thought of Knights since they are our mascot, title, reputation, the bases of cheers and puns, etc. We define ourselves by a Knight, but what happened to Maidens? Are female athletes still referred to as a Maiden? Are we all Knights? When did it change? Why did it change?

For many people, Maiden had a negative connotation as the definition is a single, unmarried women. They are untried as a Knight or soldier and are referred to as servants. Conversely, a Knight is a military man, raised in a noble home and is an honorably title given to royal families. But the question is, who is the correct mascot for our female athletes?

Mr. Bartle, North Penn’s Athletic Director, has requested all students, players, and coaches to refer all students as the Knights. Concerns from the negative connotation of the Maidens, sparked Bartle to research schools in our area about their mascots and to reach out to the female athletic teams. The research resulted in the findings of few to none schools with two mascots, and none having a Maiden as their Mascot. With this in his head, around two years ago, Bartle spoke with some female athletic teams. The overwhelming majority wanted to be referred to as Knights, not Maidens, not Lady Knights. The main reason for the switch is that we are one high school, we fall under the same umbrella, and we are represented by one mascot.

“I have always been a Knight. I will never be anyone’s Maiden, a Maiden is a servant. I am no one’s servant. Once a Knight always a Knight; we bleed blue,” said Mrs. Linda Law reflecting on her high school years at North Penn.

I have always been a Knight. I will never be anyone’s Maiden, a Maiden is a servant. I am no one’s servant. Once a Knight always a Knight; we bleed blue.”

— Linda Law

Between the time of Law’s graduation in the 1970’s, someone had changed our female athletes to the Maidens. Years ago, North Penn was referred to as the Knights of the Round Table. The Knights of the Round Table were characters in the legends about King Arthur. They lived in King Arthur’s castle and were the best Knights in the kingdom. Maidens had served the Knights at the Round Table and when someone had made that connection, that is how the Maidens became part of our school.

“I knew the general definition [of a Maiden,] but I did hear that people felt it represented a servant. Whether that was true or false, it was the impression some people had, and that wasn’t a good impression to have on our girl athletes.” explained Bartle.

Over the past two years, many efforts of spreading the unification of our school’s mascot were made. Between emailing and speaking with coaches, bringing it up at SOL meetings with all of the school’s athletic directors, confronting reporters from Suburban One, The Reporter, etc., the message that North Penn will only be referred to as the Knights has been clearly established.

Yes, it is going to take time before the word Maiden isn’t going to be associated with our female athletes. People are still going to refer to us as the Knights and Maidens but it will happen less and less as time goes on. All great changes take time, and this is one of them. There is no need to delineate between the Knights and Maidens. No matter what other people or schools may say, we are at one school, with one mascot. We are strong and loyal and determined, and we are the Knights.