• Keep Informed!

    Sign up to receive email alerts for new books, readings & signing appearances, and other interesting literary happenings!

  • My Novels

House Of The Rose Glossary

A | B | C | D | E | F | G | H | I | J | K | L | M | N | O | P | Q | R | S | T | U | V | W


AD - anno Domini or “Year of Our Lord.” Christian dating convention assuming the birth of Jesus Christ as year 0.

afreet - in Arabic mythology, a powerful, evil djinni, demon, or monstrous giant

AH - After Hegira (the Hegira was the flight of the Prophet Mohammed and his followers from Mecca to Medina). Muslim dating convention. (see Islamic Calendar)

Albigensians - see Cathars.

amphora - a large pottery storage jar with a pointed bottom, used to ship or store wine, oil, and other liquids.

animalcules - microscopic organisms

Angelus - Christian prayer, traditionally recited morning (6:00 a.m.), noon, and evening (6:00 p.m.) throughout the year except during Paschal time, when the Regina Coeli is recited instead.

Apkallu - in Babylonian tradition, there were seven ‘wise men’ or ‘sages’ who lived before the Flood. After it, the Apkallu restored civilization. They are depicted in stone carvings as men, winged bird-headed men, and men wearing large fish. In the House of the Rose, the name for the original set of seven djinn, who ruled mankind’s first cities . The Apkallu are the most powerful of the djinn. (see Cities of the Plain, djinn, Flood, Sumer)

Appointing - the formal oath-taking ceremony marking acceptance by the House of a newly-Transformed djinn as Protector. An Appointing is customarily is held on the evening of the first full moon after a solstice. (see also djinn)

arte medicus - Latin for “knowledge of medicine.”

aura - in the House of the Rose, the energy manifestation of a properly bound body-soul linkage. Humans show minor auras because their souls don’t have time to learn how to utilize the world energy well in a short mortal lifetime. Djinn manifest large, brilliant auras because, having lived in djinn bodies for long periods of time, their souls learn more efficient usage of the conducted world energy. Djinn are able to manipulate their auras to perform work of various kinds. House of the Rose people show a particular flare of aura energy after being Raised and Named, because their past-life memories have been accessed, and this manipulation of the soul-body connection creates an energy pathway visible to djinni and psychics. (see also djinn, memory, Raising and Naming, soul, world energy)

Back to TOC


bahariz - “people of the sea,” another name for the Mameluks (see Mameluk) ‘Bahr’ or “sea” is a descriptive of the Nile River. The Mameluk headquarters was located on an island in the Nile near Cairo.

barbe - a linen covering for the head, chin, and throat worn by medieval European women

bellissima - Italian for “most beautiful”

bezant - a gold coin minted in the Byzantine Empire, worth approximately two livres.

blancmange - a sweet milk pudding usually flavored with almonds

braies - a garment similar to a loincloth.

Byzantine – of or having to do with Byzantium or the complicated and devious politics of that Empire.

Byzantium – originally the name of a Greek city on the Bosporus (the strait between the Black Sea and the Mediterranean Sea); after Roman Emperor Constantine founded the city of Constantinople on the site in AD 324, it became another name for the Eastern Roman Empire. Modern-day Istanbul.

Back to TOC


Caliph - a Muslim leader considered to be a political successor to the Prophet Mohammed

catarrh - inflammation of the throat or the nose’s mucous membranes

Canonical Hours - approximately 3 hour periods dividing a day and night

Lauds: the Christian prayer service at daybreak; the first of the seven canonical hours. (performed before or after Prime depending on when dawn occurs)

Prime - the first hour in the day for medieval Europeans; the second canonical hour of prayer (approximately 6 am)

Terce - the third of the canonical hours (approximately 9 am)

Sext - the fourth of the canonical hours (approximately noon)

Nones - the fifth of the canonical hours (approximately 3 pm)

Vespers - the sixth of the canonical hours; also the Christian service of late afternoon or dusk prayers.

Compline - not considered a canonical hour. It is the Christian prayer service recited before retiring to bed.

Matins - the seventh, and lengthiest of Christian prayer services of the canonical hours, originally said at a night hour (either approximately 2 am or consecutively at about 9 pm, midnight, and 3 am each)

(see also Muslim calls to prayer)

Cathars - a medieval religious sect that believed in two coequal divine principles, one good and one evil, that struggled against each other through eternity. They believed all matter to be evil and created by Satan. The soul, which has its origins in the realm of the good God, is trapped within the material body and may be reincarnated if not sufficiently purified from material corruptions (which included having sex and eating meat.) In about 1150 the first Cathar bishopric was established in France. A few years later two more bishoprics were set up in the regions of Albi and Lombardy. By the end of the 12th century the Cathars had eleven bishoprics – five in France and six in Italy.

Such was the perceived threat posed by Cathar doctrine to the mainstream church that in 1209 Pope Innocent III proclaimed a crusade against the Cathars. There followed twenty years of ruinous warfare, during which cities and provinces throughout the south of France were devastated.

chaussures - chain mail covering for the legs and feet

Cities of the Plain - in the House of the Rose, the first human cities, located in the flat land now covered by the Black Sea. (see Flood)

cloth of estate - a canopy placed over a chair or dais to indicate the high rank of the person beneath it.

coercion - in the House of the Rose, a djinn’s ability to compel humans and other djinn to act or believe in selected ways. The aura of a regular human cannot resist coercion. Djinn, even while yet un-Transformed, can resist coercion under some circumstances. (see aura, djinn, Transformation)

colée - the ritual blow to the head of a newly-belted knight that concludes the knighting ceremony.

colleganza - Italian for a group of investors

consumption - tuberculosis

corselet - a piece of armor covering the torso

Back to TOC


damascened - metal that has been decorated with a wavy inlaid or engraved pattern, From damascene, ‘of Damascus’

Dar al-Warda - Arabic for “House of the Rose”

death - in the House of the Rose, when the soul disconnects from the body. This causes a brief flare of world-energy from the still-conducting body, since there is now nowhere to conduct the energy to. Djinni in the process of killing somebody receive the effect of the intoxicating charge of this energy spill. It does not last very long as the body quickly shuts down once the soul has been disconnected. (see djinnsoul, world energy)

denier - a low-denomination silver coin, roughly equal to a medieval English penny. 12 deniers = 1 sou; 20 sous = 1 livre (silver pound)

demesne - land set aside for the private use of a European feudal lord

destrier - a type of strong warhorse especially bred to carry armored knights

divan - a low, cushioned couch used for sitting or sleeping throughout the medieval Islamic world.

djinn (plural, djinni) – in the House of the Rose: an immortal, blood-drinking supernatural being possessing strong psychic abilities, including telepathy and telekinesis. In Muslim mythology, any of a class of spirits, lower than the angels, able to appear in human and animal forms, and having power over people for good or evil. From Arabic, ‘demon’. Also spelled djin, jinn, jinnee, and genie.

djinniah - female djinn

Druze - a monotheistic Syrian religion that reveres the 11th-century Caliph Al-Hakim as the embodiment of God

Dhuhr prayer - Islamic noontime prayers (See Muslim calls to prayer)

Back to TOC


Ea - ancient Sumerian god of wisdom, Lord of the Waters. From Sumerian ‘house of water’. (see also Enki)

Enki - another name for the god Ea. From Sumerian ‘Lord Earth’. (see Sumer)

Enlil - ancient Sumerian god, Lord of the Air. Chief of the gods. (see Sumer)

entrepot - center of trade and transshipment

electrum - an alloy of silver and gold

Emesh - ancient Sumerian god of agriculture: Lord of the Fields

emir - a Muslim prince, governor, or chieftain

Epiphany - (January 6th) Christian holy day celebrating Jesus’ divine nature, as manifestated to the Magi, or Wise Men

Ereshkigal - ancient Sumerian goddess: Queen of the Underworld (see Sumer)

Back to TOC


Fajr prayers - predawn Islamic prayers (see Muslim calls to prayer)

fee (or fief) – In European feudal law, a piece of property given to a vassal by a lord in exchange for homage and military service.

fibula (plural, fibulae) - a brooch of ancient design similar to a modern safety pin.

Flood - in the House of the Rose, the result of Inanna’s evildoing, just as she was about to be cast out for crimes against the gods; the Flood wiped out the Cities of the Plain, created the Black Sea, and caused a diaspora of refugees and interruption in civilization. In the Bible, the Flood was brought about by God in the time of Noah to destroy mankind because of its wickedness. Parallel stories are found in Babylonian and Sumerian literature. (see Cities of the Plain, Sumer)

fondaco - Venetian term for a trading house or warehouse

Franj - Arabic term for Frenchmen

frankincense - the fragrant resin of a tree native to Arabia, used in perfumes and incense

Back to TOC


gambeson - a long quilted or padded garment worn under chainmail to protect from bruising or chafing

Ghawazee - a Egyptian class of professional entertainers, primarily street dancers and musicians

glamour - in the House of the Rose, a spell cast by djinni, used to create an illusion or to induce confusion or forgetfulness.

Back to TOC


hand of air - in the House of the Rose, the use of a djinn’s aura to change the position or kinetic state of an object.

harim - the women’s quarters in an Egyptian house, from the Arabic for ‘sacred’

Hashashin -  a Muslim order of warriors (considered terrorists) established by the Old Man of the Mountain, Hassan Sabah, who chose the fortress of Alamut in 1090 as his base for a revolt against the Turkic Seljuq rulers of Persia. Basis of the English word ‘assassin’

hauberk - a tunic made of chainmail, usually knee-length

hosen (singular, hose) – close-fitting knitted leg coverings, usually worn under a long tunic or robe and tied to a belt or the bottom of a shirt with laces called ‘points.’

Back to TOC


Inanna - ancient Sumerian goddess of Love and War. Also known as the Queen of Heaven. Sister to Ereshkigal.

Islamic Calendar - The Islamic calendar begins with Muhammad’s flight from Mecca to Medina. This flight, called the Hegira, took place in A.D. 622 by the Gregorian calendar. The Islamic year is based on the moon, and has 12 months, alternately 30 and 29 days long. These months are Muharram, Safar, Rabi I, Rabi II, Jumada I, Jumada II, Rajab, Shaban, Ramadan, Shawwal, Zulkaidah, and Zulhijjah (spellings vary).

The Islamic year is much shorter than the solar year, with only 354 days. As a result, the Islamic New Year moves backward through the seasons. It moves completely backward in a course of 32 1/2 years. The Islamic calendar divides time into cycles 30 years long. During each cycle, 19 years have the regular 354 days, and 11 years have an extra day each. This method of counting time makes the Islamic year nearly as accurate in measuring the lunar year as the Gregorian year is in measuring the solar year. The Islamic calendar would be only about one day off every 2,570 years with respect to the moon. The Gregorian calendar would be only a little more accurate with respect to the sun. (This information is from World Book Encylopedia.) (see AH)

Back to TOC


jubbah - a long cloth coat worn by Egyptian men.

Back to TOC


Khamsin - A hot wind from the Sahara that blows across Egypt from late March to early May.

Khem - the ancient name for Egypt

Knight-Brother - a Templar of noble rank serving as a fighting knight in the Order

Back to TOC


langue d’oc - the Provençal language spoken by the people in Southern France, closely related to modern Catalan

langue d’oïl - medieval French, spoken by the people in Northern France

Lauds - see canonical hours.

Levant - the countries bordering the eastern Mediterranean, from Egypt to modern-day Turkey

life - in the House of the Rose, when a soul is bound to a human body. When so connected, the physical body conducts electromagnetic energy (present and always moving through the world) which the soul can then manipulate for its own psychic purposes. (Because of the nature of the soul-body bond, only one soul bonds to one body at a time.)

Lost - in the House of the Rose, a djinn or member of the House of the Rose who is reborn outside the House. The Lost cannot remember their past lives until Raised and Named by a djinn; however, their auras can be differentiated from those of ordinary mortals, which allows them to be found and in some cases recognized by the djinn or seers of the House. There are two kinds of Lost: Lost members of the House of the Rose, who are ordinary mortals until they are Raised and Named, and thereby given access to their past-life memories; and Lost djinn, who are the reincarnations of Lords of the Cities of the Plain, reborn as ordinary mortals. Only after the Lost djinn are Transformed into djinn once again, do they have access to their extraordinary powers. (see aura, Cities of the Plain, djinn, Raising and Naming, seer, Transformation)

Back to TOC


mail coif - a hood made of chainmail that protected a knight’s head and neck.

Mameluks (also Mamluk) - a powerful military caste in Egypt from 1250 until 1811. Mameluk is Arabic for ‘owned’ and although the term is often translated as ‘slave soldier’ the condition was rather military conscription by purchase. Because of Islamic prohibitions against enslaving Muslims, Mameluks were generally non-Egyptian. Rigorously trained and educated, Mameluks served in private armies, and only Mameluks could hold military office in the Egyptian government after 1250.

mandarah - the parlor or reception room in a medieval Egyptian house used for receiving male visitors

marelles - a medieval French game, [need description]

marid - in Arabic mythology, the most evil kind of djinni

Matins - the Christian service of dawn prayers (See canonical hours)

meinie - a medieval household, or the retinue of a lord

melam - Sumerian for ‘aura’ (see aura)

melee - a mock battle or group combat event in a tournament

memory - in the House of the Rose, a non-physical, non-perishable record of a being’s incarnations, part of the soul. Death deletes the indexes to the location of past-life memories, so the soul has no access to them, unless Raised and Named by a djinn. Current-life memories may be scrambled, confused, or apparently deleted by the interplay of the world energies, the body, and the soul, (or by djinn coercion) but past life memories, once accessed, are true copies of those life experiences. (see death, djinn, life, Raising and Naming, soul, world energy)

Misr - the Arabic word for Cairo, also Egypt.

Mosque - a Muslim place of worship, from Arabic ‘to prostrate oneself’

Muslim calls to prayer - (see also canonical hours)

·        Fajr  one hour before sunrise

·        Dhuhr  noon

·        Asr  Mid-afternoon

·        Maghreb  Sunset

·        Isha  about 90 minutes after sunset

miniatures - the paintings in an illuminated manuscript

myrrh - the fragrant resin of a tree native to Arabia and East Africa, used in perfumes and incense, from Akkadian murru, ‘bitter’

Back to TOC


Naming - in the House of the Rose, the recognition ceremony by which a djinn, an outsider, or a child of the House of the Rose is acknowledged as a member of the House. If they were members of the House in previous lives, their original name is announced to the House. If they are outsiders adopted into the House, a djinn Protector of the House sponsors them and gives them a Sumerian name that reflects the sponsorship. (see djinn, Protector, Sumer)

Nones - see canonical hours

Back to TOC


Oriflamme - the red flag of the Abbey of St. Denis, used as a standard by the medieval French kings (from Latin ‘golden’ + Old French ‘flame’)

oud - an Egyptian musical instrument consisting of seven double strings, played with a plectrum. (From Arabic ‘wood’. This word came into Old French and Middle English about AD 1375 as al ‘ud, or lute.)

Outremer - the Crusader kingdoms of the Middle East

Back to TOC


palfrey - a smooth-gaited riding horse

papaguy - a parrot

pantlery - the storeroom for breads and pies in a medieval European manor house

Paternoster - Christian prayer in Latin, also known as “The Lord’s Prayer” or “Our Father,” after the first line of the prayer, which translates to “Our Father, who art in Heaven…”

paynim - medieval European term for non-Christians

physick - medicine

piccoli - medieval Venetian silver coin roughly equivalent to the denier or medieval silver penny

popinjay (also papaguy) – a parrot; slang for a gaudily dressed man

Prime - see canonical hours

Protector - in the House of the Rose, a djinn who provides physical and magical protection to the mortals of the House in return for willingly given blood (usually from animals), shelter, and information on local customs and languages. (see djinn)

Back to TOC


quartan fever - malaria

Qu’ran (also spelled Koran) – the collection of holy texts accepted by Muslims as the revelations made by Allah to the prophet Mohammad. (From Arabic ‘recitation’.)

Back to TOC


Raising - in the House of the Rose, the ritual used by the djinn to locate the past-life memories of a soul reborn into a new body, and to open access to those memories by creating an energy pathway. Leaves a visible mark in the aura. (see aura, djinn, memory, Naming, soul)

rood screen - a large partition, usually made of carved wood, separating the choir of a Christian church (where the choir, or singers, sit) from the nave (the main body of the church, from Latin ‘ship’.)

rouncy - a packhorse

rushlight - a crude candle made from the pith of rushes and dipped in tallow or other grease

Back to TOC


samite - a silk cloth interwoven with gold or silver

scrip - a pilgrim’s knapsack

seer - in the House of the Rose, a person with the psychic ability to see auras (see aura)

Sergeant-Brother - a Templar of non-noble rank serving as a man-at-arms in the Order

Sext - see canonical hours

sharbat (also, sherbet) - a cold drink made with fruit juice, water, and other flavorings.

Shiite - a branch of Islam that regards Ali and his descendants as the legitimate heirs to the Prophet Mohammed, and rejects the first three caliphs.

Solomon’s Seal lantern - a carved wooden lantern suspended from a painted wooden frame in the shape of a star, from which six smaller lanterns are also suspended.

sou (plural sous) - a small denomination French coin, equal in value to 12 deniers. A sou was roughly equivalent to an English shilling (1/20 of a livre or silver pound). See also denier.

soul - In the House of the Rose, a non-physical entity with the capacity to sense and manipulate electromagnetic energies present in the world when bound to a physical body. Embodied souls have the faculties of memory, judgment, decision/will (including energy manipulation), and emotion.

squire - the shield bearer and assistant to a knight

Sufi - a order of Muslim mystics

Suk ar-Rayhaniyin - Arabic for “The Market of the Perfumers”

Sumer - name used from antiquity for the region of Southern Mesopotamia (currently Iraq). The language of its people, written in cuneiform (or wedge-shaped marks) is Sumerian. [Note: 'Sumeria' is an incorrect usage.] Biblical “Shinar.” Sumerian ‘ki-en-gir’ “land of the noble language”. Other names for this region include Bablyonia and Chaldea. Additional names for Northern Iraq include Akkad, Assyria.

Sunni - the branch of Islam that accepts the first four caliphs as the successors to the Prophet Mohammed

surcote - a tunic worn over armor

Back to TOC


Terce - see canonical hours

theriac - a mixture of ancient drugs and honey believed to be a cure-all and antidote against poison.

Transformation - in the House of the Rose, the risky procedure performed by a trained djinn, by which a mortal is changed into an immortal djinn. Involves numerous physical alterations to the body on a cellular level and has a high mortality rate. The mutations resulting from Transformation make the body capable of conducting increased amounts of world energy for manipulation by the soul. Transformation is non-reversible. (see djinn, soul, world energy)

trebuchet - a type of medieval catapult, used to hurl heavy stones

Turcoman - a breed of Central Asian horse (also known as a Persian) typically standing fifteen hands two inches, and used by mounted archers or light cavalry.

Turcopole - lightly-armed cavalry scouts of the Templars. Turcopoles were frequently of mixed Saracen and European ancestery. Also the horse ridden by the scout. Also, rarely, the light armor worn by the scout.

Back to TOC


Underworld - in the House of the Rose, the between-lives existence of the soul. After death disconnects a soul from its body, that soul has no connection to the world energies, and does not experience anything until its next incarnation. (see death, soul, world energy)

Utu - ancient Sumerian god of the Sun and Justice (see Sumer)

Back to TOC


Varangian Guard - Scandanavian warriors who served in the Byzantine army and navy in the early Middle Ages. They also served as the bodyguard for the Byzantine Emperor beginning in the late 900s. They were known as the Axe-bearing Guard, from the enormous two-handed axes they carried.

vendetta - a blood feud between two families

Vespers -the Christian service of late afternoon or dusk prayers. (see canonical hours)

viol - a bowed instrument with frets, usually played held downwards on the lap or between the legs, known in Europe as early as the 11th century.

vizier - a Muslim government minister or high official

Back to TOC


Word of Life - in the House of the Rose, one of the Apkallu powers. Strengthens the connection between a body and its soul, and increases the ability of the body to use the world energies. (see Apkallu, soul, world energy)

Word of Death - Ereshkigal’s power. Forces a disconnection between a body and its soul. In the process, the soul loses its access to the world energies, and the body is short-circuited by a sudden surge of the world energies. The ability to use the Word of Death cannot be learned by observation–it is a specific application of djinn powers. (see death, djinn, soul, world energy)

world energy - in the House of the Rose, electromagnetic energy generated by the interplay of the earth, its atmosphere, the sun, the moon, and their movements through space. The embodied soul makes use of the world energy to exercise its various mental and psychic faculties. (see djinn, soul)

Back to TOC

Switch to our mobile site