an assembly of witches, especially a group of thirteen.
Origin: 1500–10 for sense “assembly”; 1655–65 for current sense; variant of obsolete covent assembly, religious group, convent
Do you ever have the feeling that you are the only one in the world who cares about a certain thing? This is how I feel about my irritation over the word "coven" being applied to vampires. I've ranted about this in a few different online places, and no one ever jumps in and says, "I know! I hate that, too!" I feel so LONELY!
I had never heard of anyone applying "coven" to vampires until I read/listened to (on audio) the Twilight
series. But apparently, Stephenie Meyer wasn't the first to commit this crime
do this. Wikipedia
told me: "In novels such as The Vampire Chronicles
by Anne Rice
and the Twilight
series by Stephenie Meyer
, covens are families or unrelated groups of vampires who live together."
Stephenie Meyer has claimed not to have read any vampire lore, including Anne Rice, before writing her tale of sparkly vampires, but it seems awfully coincidental that she should also come up with the idea of using "coven" to describe groups of vampires. I suppose it's possible?
But in any event: NO! Covens are groups of witches. By definition. Yes, I understand that languages are living, changing organisms, but why, oh, why must the definition of "coven" be expanded to include vampires? What's wrong with keeping "coven" for "witch" use? There are plenty of words one can use to describe groups. How about vampire clans? Posses? Tribes? Factions? Crews? Gangs? Bunches?
I suppose it's too late to undo the damage that Rice and Meyer have inflicted upon the word "coven," but if anyone reading this is planning to write a new "vampire" narrative, PLEASE don't call their groups "covens." Let's return that word to the witches!