Do Mundane Infants Love Gifted Mothers?

While thinking about magi and offspring, and reviewing Apprentices, I note that mothers of the born Gifted (some number present the Gift after birth) may or may not take to their Gifted newborn infant.

This led to to wonder if the unGifted newborn take to their Gifted mothers? I suspect that as the newborn was Part of the Maga until birth, they would at least have a great tolerance for their mother, and given the close association, initial nursing, and so on, would be born and raised "used to" their mother, although probably not a Gifted father. Perhaps not.


Extend Parma to the baby to quell fussiness.

That occurred to me; it would work, but it doesn't really answer the question.

If a maga is interested in raising the child and has the Gift, she's probably going to extend Parma every time, the child comes into view.

It takes roughly 15 years to become used to the Gift of one person, and even then, it's still there, but more like the unGifted has been training himself to withstand the Gift of an individual with whom they regularly interact. So, no, a newborn probably isn't going to be used to the Gifted mother by dint of being within the womb of the mother.

Are you referring to the familiarity rules from Covenants? Because I'm not sure I would use morale rules primarily meant to model how groups of Grogs react to groups of Magi to to model how an individual responds to the gift of another individual.

My reading of the Social Effects of the Gift write up in core and the Prevailing Loyalty section in Covenants is that familiarity can develop fairly quickly on an individual level. After all Magi aren't visiting Inns, Villages, and Monasteries for fifteen years at a time usually. And there are several places in covenants that establishes that Prevailing loyalty is definitely an average of sentiment.

The Prevailing Loyalty and Individual Loyalty section Covonants pg 36 is quite apropos. Also relevant is some of the information under the headings for Established Covenants and Familiarity (37&40 respectively). They discuss the idea of being born around the gifted and growing up familiar. Which is a little different then growing up and becoming familiar.

Well, if the baby has good living condition and a wet-nurse "specialist", it can be close enough to 0 that it might not matter. Assuming the mother does not have the Blatant Gift. :mrgreen:

Depends on how realistic you want to be. There's a principal in biology known as the Uncertainty Principle; it basically means that dependent creatures (mainly the baby animals of species that raise their young, including humans) tend to show stronger signs of love towards a parent figure (whether actual parent or, in the case of puppies, owner) if they are unsure whether said parent will treat them lovingly or (unlovingly? cruelly? I dunno the word) than if the parent can be expected to provide consistent love, comfort, and protection.

As such, I think an unGifted baby might love their mother more while the Gift is affecting them.

I'm not sure that fits into the medieval paradigm, though. I figure the baby would be willing to suckle, as it needs to do so to survive, but may, in the earlier stages, cry if the mother attempts to interact with it (holding or playing with it, for example). Unlike most other interactions, though, I imagine this being exactly the same between a normally Gifted mother and a Blatantly Gifted mother. Though, how a non-Maga character with the Blatant Gift managed to find a willing partner for parenting is beyond me...

As with all things, it'll vary from saga to saga, but that's my general view.

Still doesn't answer the question.
We only know that the mother is Gifted, not that she is a Hermetic maga.
She could easily be untaught, or of a different tradition.

You're refering to the note i Rival Magic, amazones chapter, aren't you?

The original question mentioned Apprentices, so the context was that of a Hermetic maga, even though it may not have been explicitly stated. I'll note that you didn't answer the question, either. It's not a question that can be answered definitively, IMO, and requires the troupe to come o some consensus on how this should work.

You're refering to the note i Rival Magic, amazones chapter, aren't you?
As someone else said, Covenants.

Wet nurses were fairly common in the era, and children of magi will tend to be well cared for, materially speaking, and so may come to think of their wet nurse as their mother, rather than the mother who gave birth. There is likely to be a strong bond develop between the wet nurse and the child, which will probably make it more difficult to create a strong maternal bond between the maga and the child, if she doesn't extend parma. I'm not an early childhood development expert...

Oh, silly me, I was just reading the topic line, thinking it might have something to do with the topic.

Mind you, looking over the OP's question again, it does reference the Apprentices book, but not actual apprentices, just children.

And here I was trying to help.

So, you were refering to the only marginally relevant familarity note in Covenants, p. 40, which deals only with turbs that could be expected to have limited exposure to any given magus/maga, rather than the note on getting used to your mistress' Gift, p. 30 of Rival Magic, second column, under the header of (amazon) "Apprenticeship"?

Oh, silly me, I read the original post. It had two key words which made me think Order of Hermes and Parma Magica being available: Maga and Apprentices (the book). The two, taken in context is strongly indicative that it's a Maga of the Order of Hermes being a mother. Given that context, it's pretty easy to say that a Maga with Parma Magica would simply extend Parma to the infant to overcome fussiness. I was perhaps being a bit flippant.

And I'll be honest here, I didn't reference Rival Magic because I don't have it. It's good you have a better reference. You've stated it twice now.

Can Love overcome the effects of the Gift generally? What about True Love? Those questions are best left to the troupe, and while we can discuss that here in the forum, every person will have entirely different opinions. In fact, I will have different opinions depending on the story I want to participate in. More basically, can a bond develop between Gifted mother and child? Sure. The child might rely upon everything, at first, from the maga. But there is a whole continuum of possibilities of how to approach the relationship between Gifted mother and child. It could be Tiger mom like, where the child is always pushed to achieve, or it could be different, and that will affect the "Love."

I would be generous, specially if the child is important on story or to the character: True Love (Child), Dependent and Close Family Ties can be used to describe the relationship, I would say than some extent to the Unaffected to the Gift could be very possible to the child, at least if he grw with the care and love of his mother. If she is one Hermetic maga, then she probably will care his child with her Parma too. But again, if she has lived and interacted heavely with them, they would be accostumed to their mother any way.

Nothing necessarily new to add, but here's a link to the last time the question came up - there were some fun ideas there!

In fact, I am thinking in terms of Hermetic magi, but I should pose it more generally - there are non-Hermetic Gifted, and it may be that the women in question might be an apprentice, given the age at which medieval women might start giving birth, and so not have Parma. There are probably Gifted people who are not detected by magicians, and those beyond the usual reach of the Order.

So, would the child of any Gifted mother imprint on their mother, or reject their mother?

Whether the child is Gifted is irrelevant, now that I think about it; the Gifted are also affected by others' Gift, absent magical protection.


Children of mothers who abuse them still seem to become very attached to said mothers despite the abuse received. I vote that love trumps the Gift, especially in the parent-child relationship.

An interesting side question, since abused children often find themselves in abusive relationships when they are adults, could ungifted children raised by a Gifted parent find themselves attracted to the Gift as adults?

I don't even know what the answer to this would be, but I wanted to let you know that you just blew my mind. I must say, though, a person into the Gift would probably be the same type to be into one-night stands; one of the primary functions of the Gift is that it makes you seem untrustworthy, so there probably won't be a lot of deeper emotional connections even if the quality is found attractive.


Thanks. I will suggest to my troupe that Unaffected by the Gift is a common (not automatic) result of being born to a Gifted mother.

You know, Unaffected by the Gift being particularly common when the parent is Gifted would actually make the continued functionality of House Mercere a lot more sensible.