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This Article is based on the Official Translations of the Light Novel series!
The Light Novel series is the source material for the adaptation of the Anime and Manga series. The information and terminology on the article will be based on the source material rather than the adaptions.


Gray priests working in the Ehrenfest orphanage.

Orphanage (孤児院, koji'in) refers to an institution that provides for abandoned or orphaned commoner children.

In the city of Ehrenfest, the orphanage is managed by the temple. It accepts unbaptized orphans from the lower city, as well as the children of grey shrine maidens. Once accepted by the temple, orphans are raised to become gray priests who may be bought and sold as servants to the nobility.

Smaller towns and villages also have local orphanages that are not part of the temple. Any orphans are considered the collective property of the town, and they may be bought or sold at the discretion of the town's mayor.

Header.pngEhrenfest Temple Orphanage

The girls' wing of the Ehrenfest orphanage.

The Ehrenfest temple orphanage accepts unbaptized childen who are abandoned or orphaned in the lower city of Ehrenfest.

It also raises any children born to members of the clergy. While both blue and gray priests are (at least in theory) sworn to celibacy[1], the blue priests often take concubines among the gray priests. It is also common practice to return concubines to the orphanage after they become pregant and select another attendant as a replacement[2]. After the child is born, it is raised at the orphanage, and those who reach baptismal age become gray priests.

Finally, the orphanage is home to all gray priests and shrine maidens who are not currently serving as attendants. Once a gray priest is selected to serve as an attendant, they will move out of the orphanage and take rooms in the administrative building near their new master. Likewise, if they are dismissed or their master dies, they return to live in the orphanage.

Regardless of age, those living at the orphanage are forbidden to leave unless they are appointed as attendants, are purchased by a buyer outside the temple, or have the express permission of the orphanage director.

Layout

The layout of the orphanage within the Ehrenfest temple.

The temple orphanage is split into two buildings on either side of the main chapel. Each has four floors. However, the ground floor is called the "basement," and the floors above it are labeled as the first, second, and third floors[3].

Boys’ Building

  • Basement: Originally used as storage space, the basement was later converted into the orphanage branch of the printing workshop. This is the only part of the boys' building that women are allowed to enter.
  • First Floor: A gathering area and the living quarters for apprentice gray priests. The orphanage director's chambers are also on this floor, but they cannot be accessed through the orphanage.
  • Second Floor: Living quarters for adult gray priests.
  • Third Floor: Living quarters for adult gray priests.

Girl's Building

  • Basement: Originally used as communal housing for unbaptized children and pregnant gray shrine maidens. Under Myne's management, it was converted into a kitchen and storage space.
  • First Floor: Originally the living quarters for apprentice shrine maidens. It is now used for both apprentice shrine maidens and unbaptized children.
  • Second Floor: The orphanage dining hall. This is the only area of the girls' building that men are allowed to enter.
  • Third Floor: Living quarters for adult gray shrine maidens.

Management

The orphanage's primary source of food and necessities (such as soap, candles, and other supplies) is through the blue priests' surplus, which is passed down as Divine Gifts. The orphanage director also recieves a budget from the temple to cover any other expenses.

Under Myne's management, the temple opened the printing workshop, which serves as an additional source of revenue. The children in the orphanage routinely go out to the commoners' forest to forage for supplies, while the apprentice and adult gray priests manage the work of printing and binding books.

On a day-to-day level, the organization of the orphanage and care of the orphans is provided by the gray priests and shrine maidens who live there. The current head caretaker of the orphans is Wilma, and the current manager of the printing workshop is Gil.

Header.pngHasse's Monastery

Hasse's monastery is a special case and so far the only one of its kind in Ehrenfest. It is not an orphanage in itself, but technically part of the Ehrenfest orphanage, despite being in another settlement. The current orphanage director Lady Rozemyne also rotates the priest and shrine maidens that live and work in the monastery back to the temple once a year, except for those that were bought from Hasse's village orphanage, who became permanent recidents of the monastery after finishing their education in temple behavior and manners over their first winter as grey robes.

Hasse's monastery was modelled like a scaled-down version of the main orphanage except that the common room in the boy's building has been replaced with a chapel and the orphanage director's chambers are a noble's hidden room at the back of the chapel.

During Rozemyne's two year coma, Thore and Rick made a small field to plant vegetables outside the monestary. Due to the soil around the monestary being exceptionally rich in mana, the field provides very good yields[4].

Spoiler from Part 4 Volume 5

This mana-rich ground is not limited to the monastery grounds, but spreads out all around it, greatly increasing the fertility of the area, making the surroundings even more bountiful than the areas around the river. Not only do more fruits and vegetables grow there, but they also tend to be larger. This also attracts more animals than usual, making it a prime hunting ground in addition to being so well suited for foraging.

Over the last few years the monastery and the local farming town have established a close and friendly relationship. The locals are regularly hired to help with the monastery's winter preparation. They provide tools and manpower and in return they are payed well and allowed to forage in the bountiful forest near the building. This arrangement pleases both sides and allowed the monastery to be more self-sufficient for winter, rather than having to fully rely on the help of the Plantin Company like they had to the first year after the place was built.

The extra food they grow on the fields overseen by Thore and Rick also supplements the larders of the main temple in the capital for the winter.

Working at the temple also had a noticably positive effect on the priest and shrine maidens sent there for the warm seasons, both physically and mentally. Working the fields and foraging regularly in the forest made them visibly healthier and tanned. One of the priests remarked to Lady Rozemyne how it felt much better to be able to work for their own sustainance, than to sit around and do nothing while being entirely dependant on divine gifts and how satisfying it is to see the fruits of their own labor[5].

Header.pngFarming Village Orphanages

Many bigger villages have orphanages under the care of the local mayor. In these the orphans are treated like commodities, having to follow the mayors orders or expect harsh punishments. They are expected to help with work in the village, which mainly means farm work. Upon coming of age they become full-fledged and independant members of the community and are granted their own fields, though it is well within the rights of the mayor to sell the orphans to anyone willing and able to pay for them prior to their coming of age ceremony.

How well the orphans are treated and fed depends entirely on the mayor of the town. One of the worst orphanages in Ehrenfest's central district was the one in Hasse, through after it's mayor had been executed for treason, conditions for the children improved markedly under the new mayor Richt.

Header.pngReferences

  1. Ascendance of a Bookworm. Part 3 Volume 1. Chapter 10: Starbind Ceremony in the Noble's Quarter
  2. Ascendance of a Bookworm. Part 3 Volume 5. Meanwhile at the Temple
  3. Ascendance of a Bookworm. Fanbook. Q&A With Miya Kazuki
  4. Ascendance of a Bookworm. Part 4 Volume 4. Chapter 10: Spring Prayer in the Central District
  5. Ascendance of a Bookworm. Part 4 Volume 5. Chapter 11: Groschel and the Harvest Festival

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Characters
A AchimAdolphineAlexisAnastasiusAngelicaAnnikaArnoAub Klassenberg
B Baron BlonBaron GlazBartzBennoBernadetBertildeBezewanstBierceBonifatiusBrigitteBrunhilde
C CaryaCatherineCharlotteChristelChristineClaudioConstanzeCorinnaCorneliusCosimoCount BindewaldCount GroschelCount Leisegang
D DamianDamuelDaniloDeidDeliaDetlindeDimoDirk
E EbbEckhartEffaEglantineEgmontEgonEllaElviraEmerikaErnestaEwigeliebe
F FerdinandFeyFlorenciaFlutraneFranFraularmFreidaFriedelFrietackFritz
G GabrieleGeduldhGeorgineGerdaGieselfriedGilGloriaGod of DarknessGoddess of LightGrausamGudrunGundolfGuntherGustavGutenberg
H HanneloreHartmutHasse's MayorHassheitHeidemarieHeidiHelfriedHenrikHirschurHugo
I IgnazIngoIsidore
J JenniJeremiasJohannJonsaraJosefJuditheJulianeJustusJutte
K KaiKamilKampferKantnaKarlaKarstedtKashickKathreinKenntripsKonrad
L LagreteLamprechtLasfamLauraLaurenzLeberechtLeckleLeidenschaftLeiseLeonLeonoreLessyLestilautLetiziaLieseletaLilyLinhardtLinusLizLizzieLutz
M MatthiasMargaretMarkMartheMatildaMelchiorMestionoraMonikaMoritzMyne
N NadineNicolaNikolausNolteNoraNorbert
O OrtwinOswaldOswinOttilieOtto
P PaulinePhilinePrevious Count LeisegangPrimevere
R RalphRauffenRelichionRenateRichtRickRihyardaRitaRoderickRosinaRoyellaRozemaryRozemyneRudigerRudolf
S SchutzariaSchwartz and WeissSelimShikikozaShuuSiegSigiswaldSixth Aub EhrenfestSolangeStenlukeSylvester
T TheoThoreToddTrauerqualTraugottTrudeliedeTuuli
U Urano MotosuUrano Motosu’s Mother
V VeronicaViktorViscount DahldolfViscount JoisontakVolk
W WilfriedWilmaWolf
Z ZackZahmZasha
Character Galleries
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