An elder is a Clan cat that has served their Clan faithfully, but has now retired. They are wise and are held in high respect by the other cats; their counsel and knowledge is sought several times, even by Clan leaders, though they are often described as grumpy. They do not have to catch their own food, nor do hunting patrols or fight, except to defend if necessary.
They stay in their den most of the day, and most of them enjoy meeting new kits. However, they may leave the camp if they wish to do so, such as to take a walk to stretch their legs or to hunt. Sometimes, they participate in Gatherings, usually to gossip with other elders.
Elders are to be held with the utmost respect from cats of all Clans. They have served the Clan well in the past as apprentices and warriors. During their youth, they took care of the elders of their generation. Now, it is their turn to rest, and the youth of the Clan is to take care of them in honor of all they have done to serve the Clan.
Elders are often susceptible to many diseases and injuries such as greencough and stiff joints. They are often treated by medicine cats and apprentices. They also are more than often tick-ridden, and it is the duty of the apprentices to use mouse bile to remove the ticks.
Some tasks elders do are:
- Rub herbs on a cat's body when they have passed away to disguise the scent of death.
- Take deceased cats out of camp to bury them.
- Tell stories about Clan life as it was when they were growing up.
Obtaining the rank
An elder is usually an elderly cat who wishes to rest and not do warrior duties any more due to their old age. When a warrior, queen, deputy, or medicine cat wishes to retire, an elder ceremony is held. Sometimes a cat must retire early for reasons beyond their control (for instance a wound, loss of sight, any other disability, etc). Usually if circumstances force a cat into early retirement, they will receive a new name in order to better suit their current state.
Outside of the Clans
- BloodClan, the so-called "Clan" from the Twolegplace, does not care for their elders, and makes them hunt and care for themselves. They are not treated with the same respect as Clan elders.
The Tribe of Rushing Water
- Darktail's group, the band of rogues who drove out SkyClan, only let the strongest cats eat and don’t care about their queens or elders.
- Elders in the Kin are not treated with respect, and are expected to look after themselves and contribute, just like any other member of the rogue group. They also participate in battles unlike Clan elders, and sent in first as fodder.
Notes and references
- Revealed in The Darkest Hour, page 100
- Revealed in Bluestar's Prophecy, page 74
- Revealed in Into the Wild, page 49
- Revealed in Bluestar's Prophecy, page 21
- For instance, Sunningrocks was described as a favorite place for elders to relax.
- Revealed in The Sight, page 97
- In the first books of The Prophecies Begin arc, elders sometimes left to hunt when they wished to do so.
- Revealed in Into the Wild, page 142
- Revealed in Code of the Clans, pages 36-37
- Revealed in Long Shadows, page 151
- Revealed in Forest of Secrets, page 102
- Revealed in Bluestar's Prophecy, page 140
- Revealed in Into the Wild, page 204
- Revealed in Into the Wild, page 50
- Revealed in Starlight, page 220
- Revealed in Bluestar's Prophecy, page 142
- Revealed in Bluestar's Prophecy, page 507
- Revealed in The Darkest Hour, page 132
- Revealed in Into the Wild, pages 247-248
- Revealed in The Apprentice's Quest, pages 202-203
- Revealed in Shattered Sky, page 37
- Revealed in Shattered Sky, page 99
|Hierarchy and positions in the Warriors world|
|Clan hierarchy||Kits • Apprentices • Warriors • Deputies • Leaders • Queens • Elders • Medicine cats • Mediators|
|Ceremonies||Vigil • Apprentice • Warrior • Deputy • Leader • Elder • Medicine cat • Name changing|
|Tribe hierarchy||To-bes • Cave-guards • Prey hunters • Kit mothers • Healer/Stoneteller|
|Miscellaneous||General Clan information • General Tribe information • Cat names|
|Other groups||Loners • Rogues • Kittypets|