The Most Righteous Order of Saint Judas is run along hierarchical lines.

At the top sits the Council, which has no knights from the Order as members but oversees the Order’s activities. Reporting to the Council is the leader of the Order, the Grand Knight; in Lizzie’s time, this is Sir Joseph Lund. Beneath the Grand Knight, the details may change from time to time depending on how many knights there are and where they are most often needed. However, the basic arrangement is that the knights and esquires are organised into groups known as stations, each station being headed by a Knight Commander. The appointment of esquires and equerries is usually left at the discretion of the Knights Commander, but there are exceptions.

At the time Lizzie joins the Order, there are four stations and therfore four Knights Commander. The stations are Home, Foreign, India and Iscariot. The Home and Foreign Stations are based behind Door A where the Knights’ headquarters is in London; the India Station is based in Calcutta (nowadays known as Kolkata); the Iscariot Station is a ship, HMS Iscariot. Although there is some overlap, the Home Station deals primarily with matters in the British Isles; the Foreign Station deals with matters in continental Europe; the India Station deals with matters in India; and the Iscariot Station deals with matters everywhere else. When the Grand Knight is not available to attend Council meetings, the Knight Commander of the Home Station (Sir William, in Lizzie’s time) will attend instead; for this reason, the Knight Commander of the Home Station can for practical purposes be regarded as the Knights’ second-in-command, although formally all Knights Commander are of equal rank.

The Council

The Knights of St Judas answer to the Council for their actions. The only members of the Council are the current monarch (or regent), the Archbishops of Canterbury and York, and, at the monarch’s discretion, the First Lord of the Treasury (that is, the Prime Minister). On the day that Lizzie left The Flute (Friday, 16th July, 1869), the Council consisted of: Alexandrina Victoria, Her Majesty The Queen; the Most Reverend Archibald Campbell Tait, Archbishop of Canterbury; and the Most Reverend William Thomson, Archbishop of York.

Sometimes, prime ministers lose office. If they have been appraised of the existence of the Council, they may be invited to contribute to a meeting if its main topic concerns an area in which they have particular expertise. At the time Lizzie’s story begins, there were two such advisors: the Right Honourable John Russell, the Earl Russell; and the Right Honourable Benjamin Disraeli MP.

If at any time an individual knight needs to speak to a member of the Council, they can do so by passing the Council member’s staff a note bearing the knight’s full name and date of birth, followed by the number 30 in Roman numerals. The staff don’t know what it means — but the Council members do.

The Council is very powerful — some might say too powerful, as it can lawfully order the summary execution of any knight, esquire or equerry without trial. It can also require the ‘de-gifting’ of a knight or esquire, a punishment which is every bit as unpleasantly specific as it sounds, but which happily has not been meted since 1659. Only a full meeting of the Council can appoint or dismiss a Grand Knight; individual Council members can also invoke a Right of Interview regarding the appointment of esquires. As with other chivalric orders, however, only the monarch can perform the Accolade ceremony that confers knighthood on an esquire.

Did you know? 1690 was an awkward year for the Council. The King, James II, had been deposed in 1688 and parliament had voted in 1689 to declare his nephew William and daughter Mary to rule jointly in his stead — even though James had a legitimate male heir (another James) who was next in line. This challenged the concept of the divine right of kings, so the 79th Archbishop of Canterbury, William Sancroft, refused to take the Oath of Allegience to the new monarchs. As a result, in 1690 he was dismissed from his position. This meant that the Council had one more monarch than usual, plus an ex-Archbishop and an ex-monarch it could call on as advisors!

The Grand Knights

Here is a list of all the Grand Knights of the Order, up to and including Sir Joseph:


Grand Knight



Sir John Malbar

Died (heart attack) in office


Sir Jennit Hopwood

Killed (poisoned) in office


Sir Paul Awcock

Killed (shot) in office


Sir Rosamond Wreet

Retired; died (pneumonia) 1702


Sir Andrew Burgess

Killed (explosion) in office


Sir Joseph Lund


Did you know? The purpose of the order as defined by its founder, Queen Elizabeth I (known simply as Queen Elizabeth in Lizzie’s time), is “to defend the realm from heinous threat”.


Knights of the Most Righteous Order of Saint Judas are not always on missions. They may be in training, or injured, or even on leave. If they are on a mission, or in transit to a mission, then they are known as Knights Errant; if they are not on missions, they are known as Knights Ceremonial — unless they are on leave, in which case they are Knights Compassionate.

Knights will usually seek to devote their whole adult life to the Order. However, injury, old age or the diminishment of their gift may mean that they can no longer carry out missions, in which case they will be obliged to retire. There is no official term for retired knights, but everyone calls them Knights Discharge (spoken with the emphasis on dis rather than charge).

There is one more category of knight: the Knights Pale. These are knights who have broken with the Order and as a result are wanted for treason (treason, because the Knights operate under royal prerogative). Knights Pale are regarded as very dangerous, because they threaten the existence of the Order itself. Fortunately, examples of Knights Pale are very rare — there have only been three since the Order was founded, and the last of those was in 1775. More common are Esquires Pale and, to some extent, Equerries Pale.


Equerries have no singular gift, but they perform duties for the Knights and are aware of the Order’s existence. All the masters who serve behind Door A and all the seamen who man HMS Iscariot are equerries, as are those who formerly held such positions but have moved on. Many such former servants are paid a retainer to act in some other capacity, for example as a quartermaster — someone who keeps a cache of supplies and equipment ready for the Knights’ use on visits to their location. There are other equerries who are not permanently employed by the Order but who do act on its behalf from time to time, for example those such as Dr Whincup who look out for potential recruits.

Another major source of equerries are people who were invited to become esquires but declined, or who became esquires but did not measure up. Some of these individuals are quite unco-operative, but others will help the Order in any way they can.

Family members are also sometimes inducted as equerries. This can be more awkward, as people have no choice over who their family is and occasionally relatives are not to be trusted. Lizzie’s father, Joseph Lott, had to be informed of the Order’s existence because Lizzie was under 21; had Sir William adjudged him to be untrustworthy, however, Lizzie would not have been invited to join the Order until she came of age. Although most knights are unmarried, or married to other knights, sometimes they do wish to marry members of the public or are already married when they join the Order. In general, it is recommended that a knight’s betrothed or spouse be told about the Order’s existence. so as to avoid the pressure and dishonesty of living a life of deceit. To avoid potential distress, a convention has arisen that prior to getting engaged, a knight will seek the permission of a Knight Commander or the Grand Knight, thereby allowing their sweetheart to be checked out by someone not blinded by love. Esquires are normally advised to wait until they are knighted before getting married, but if they can’t then the same convention applies.

There are many other people on the Order’s payroll who aren’t equerries because they don’t know they are working for the Order. For example, a spy may be told he is being employed by “Her Majesty’s government”, but not know that he is actually working for the Knights of St Judas.

Equerries are normally approved by a Knight Commander, but in an emergency any knight may induct someone as an equerry. Esquires are forbidden from telling anyone of the Order’s existence without permission, therefore they cannot create equerries themselves. Equerries will be managed either at the station level or independently by a knight who has special need of their services.

Did you know? In Lizzie’s time, there were just over 300 equerries — the most the Order had ever had at that point.


Here is a list of all members of the Order at the time Lizzie signed up:

Home Station

Sir William (Knight Commander)

Name: William Baker

Born: Winchester, Hampshire

Sir Alice

Name: Alice Smith

Born: Castletown, Isle of Man

Sir Charles

Name: Charles Stott

Born: Norwich, Norfolk

Sir Edward

Name: Edward Ward

Born: Dublin, Ireland

Sir Katherine

Name: Cat Faulkner

Born: Lewes, East Sussex

Squire Elizabeth

Name: Elizabeth Lott

Born: Kingston upon Hull, Yorkshire

Foreign Station

Sir Mary (Knight Commander)

Name: Mary Jervis

Born: Macclesfield, Cheshire

Sir George

Name: Dr George Cooke

Born: London

Sir Henry

Name: Henry Goodall

Born: Perth, Scotland

Sir Jane

Name: Jane Dunn

Born: Bangor, Caernarfonshire

Sir John

Name: John Hewitt

Born: Cambridge, Cambridgeshire

Sir Laura

Name: Laura Cooke

Born: Gloucester, Gloucestershire

Sir Susannah

Name: Susannah Cockram

Born: Rome, Italy

Squire Isaac

Name: Isaac Nash

Born: St Helier, Jersey

India Station

Sir David (Knight Commander)

Name: David Hood

Born: Spanish Town, Jamaica

Sir Alexander

Name: Alexander Wighton

Born: Dundee, Scotland

Sir Grace

Name: Grace Gill

Born: Tamworth, Staffordshire

Sir Harry

Name: Harish Podury

Born: Gaya, Bihar, India

Sir Iqbal

Name: Iqbal bin Majid

Born: Rawalpindi, India

Sir Isabell

Name: Isabell Bravener

Born: Ilkley, Yorkshire

Sir Jamsetji

Name: Jamsetji Tehsildar

Born: Bombay, India

Sir Kamilah

Name: Kamilah Noon

Born: Jalandhar, India

Sir Michael

Name: Dr Michael Best

Born: Antrim, Ireland

Sir Satya

Name: Satya Venkatesan

Born: Madras, India

Squire Florence

Name: Florence Ellen

Born: Castries, St Lucia

Squire James

Name: Thomas James Devall

Born: Lingfield, Surrey

Squire Peng

Name: Peng Shao

Born: Hong Kong

Iscariot Station

Sir Sarah

Name: Captain Zahra Robinson

Born: Kavala, Greece

Sir Frances

Name: Frances Summerskill

Born: Sydney, Australia

Sir Ling

Name: Ling Ling

Born: Singapore, Straits Settlements

Sir Matthew

Name: Benjamin Matthew Hill

Born: Liverpool, Lancashire

Sir Thomas

Name: Thomas Stratton

Born: Charlottetown, Canada

Sir Tomasin

Name: Mary Tomasin Durance

Born: Amble, Northumberland


Sir Joseph (Grand Knight)

Name: Joseph Lund

Born: Kippax, Yorkshire

Sir Edwin

Name: (known only to Sir Joseph and the Council)

Born: Portsmouth, Hampshire


Sir Gwendoline

Name: Gwendoline (no surname)

Born: Monmouthshire

Sir Judith

Name: Mary Judith Pairmain

Born: Pyecombe, Sussex

Sir Richard

Name: Richard Bowser

Born: Glasgow, Scotland

Sir Theodore

Name: Theodore Clarke

Born: Half Way Tree, Jamaica

Did you know? By tradition, no two living Knights or Esquires can have the same first name. In the event of a clash, new Esquires must choose a different name (typically their middle name, if they have one). Usually, Knights will be dubbed with the same name they bore as an Esquire; sometimes, however, they may be dubbed with an Anglicised version of that name — not always with their consent (as in Sir Katherine’s case).