Saturday, 10 April 2021

Dame Elizabeth Grosvenor, 1628.

 Funeral Certificates

Dame Elizabeth Grosvenor, 1628.

Daughter and sole heir to Sir Peter Warberton of Grafton [1st husband Sir Thomas Stanley of Auderley. 2nd husband Sir Richard Grosvenor of Eaton]

Arms, Quarterly of four: 1, Quarterly, Argent and Gules, in the second and third a fret Or, in the first quarter an ermine spot; over all a crescent for difference; 2, Argent, a chevron between three cormorants Sable; 3, Argent, two chevronels Gules on a canton of the second, a mullet Or; 4, Barry wavy of six Argent and Sable, a chief per pale Ermine and Gules, the latter charged with a fleur-de-lis Or; a crescent Sable for difference.

[I have not rendered these arms in a lozenge]    

The first quarter is for Dutton* but bears an additional charge of  fleur-de-lis in the first quarter as well as the cadency mark. The second quarter is for Warburton and the third is Warburton Ancient, or Orreby. I have yet to identify the fourth quarter.  

*I received a reminder from Richard Lichten of a note by Clive Cheeseman (Coat of Arms, Journal of the Heraldry Society, Volume II 2006) that the Warburtons claimed male-line descent from Adam of Dutton, who had half the manor of Warburton in frank marriage with Agnes daughter of Roger son of Alured, the other half being granted to him by the Prior of St John of Jerusalem in 1189; see also G . Ormerod, History of the Count y Palatine and City of Chester (3 vols., London 1819), vol. 1, pp. 430-1. The family therefore frequently displayed the arms of Dutton in first place, sometimes adding a crescent to indicate that Adam was a second son.     

Friday, 9 April 2021

Edward Dutton, Esquire, 1620.

 I've been putting this one off for a while now because it has twelve quarters but having a few moments to myself (ha ... more like hours!) this afternoon decided to take the bull by the horns. 

Edward Dutton, Esquire, 1620.
Arms: Quarterly of twelve; 1, Quarterly Argent and Gules, in the second and third a fret Or; 2, Argent, on a bend Gules, three escarbuncles Or; 3, Vert, a cross engrailed Ermine; 4, Or, a saltire Sable; 5, Azure, an estoile of eight points issuing from between the horns of a crescent Argent; 6, Or, on a fesse Azure, three garbs of the field; 7, Azure, a chevron between three garbs Or; 8, Ermine, on a chevron Gules, three escallops Argent; 9, Or, a cinquefoil pierced Sable; 10, Azure, a garb Or; 11, Sable, a cross flory Argent; 12, Azure, three pheasants Or.

Crest: A plume of five ostrich feathers, Argent, Azure, Or, Vert, and Gules, quills Gold. 

1. Quarterly Argent and Gules, in the second and third a fret Or [Dutton]
2. Argent, on a bend Gules 3 escarbuncles Or [Thorneton]
3. Vert, a cross engrailed Ermine [Kingsley]
4. Or, a saltire Sable [Helsby]
5. Azure, an estoile issuant from the horns of a crescent Argent [Minshull].
6. Or, on a fesse Azure, three garbs of the field, [Vernon]
7. Azure, a chevron between three garbs Or. [Hatton]
8. Ermine, on a chevron Gules, three escallops Argent [Grove]
9. Or, a cinquefoil pierced Sable. [Vernon]
10. Azure, a garb Or. [Grosvenor]
11. Sable, a cross fleury Argent [Eaton]
12. Azure, three pheasants Or.[Fesant]

H.R.H. Prince Phillip, Duke of Edinburgh "The Queen's Strength".

10 June 1921 – 9 April 2021

What a man.

Coat of Arms of HRH Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh (born 1921, died 2021) granted in 1949 to Prince Philip of Greece and Denmark (Sir Philip Mountbatten) consort to Queen Elizabeth II of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland. In 1947 the Prince was made Duke of Edinburgh, Earl of Merioneth and Baron Greenwich by King George VI. The coat of arms represents his lineage as a Prince of Greece and Denmark on his paternal side and his descent of the Mountbatten family on his maternal side.

Image of the arms courtesy of Sodacan.

Thursday, 1 April 2021

Oh Dear, it's all a load of Bull

This image has just appeared on Facebook and it's raised a few questions. 

The owner of these arms, a Mr. Paul Mark Moffat, describes himself (on his Facebook page) as  "Maestro Comandante The Right Honorable Count Paul M Moffat 10th Baron of Bulwell".

According to an article written by Robert Mellors, "Old Nottingham suburbs: then and now [Bulwell] (1914)", there is (or was then) a Court Leet for the Manor of Bulwell but it was owned by Nottingham Corporation and it is highly unlikely that said Corporation would have sold a barony of Bulwell when it is simply a manor.  "A local Court of great antiquity still survives at Bulwell, called "The View of Frankpledge, Court Leet, and Great Court Baron," of the lord of the Manor, which lordship is now vested in Sir Edward Fraser and Sir John T. McCraith, being the nominees of the Corporation of Nottingham. Mr. Arthur Browne, as Steward of the Manor for the last twenty-three years, has the custody of the Records, which date from 1723, the earlier part being in Latin, and older records having been lost."

It seems to me that this particular barony is, let's say, a tad dubious.

There is no doubt that the creation of this digital image by Quentin Peacock is, in itself quite beautiful however, keeping it heraldic, the armiger should have been informed that baronies, particularly English feudal baronies (quite apart from the fact that there is a strong argument to say that they don't exist) never had arms of their own and so a feudal baron would never display arms of pretence in this way and in any case, English feudal barons never had any "additaments" such as the chapeau so the escutcheon of pretence would not be ensigned by one. Setting aside the escutcheon of pretence, which ought not be there, the actual shield is excellent and there is no reason why the crest should not feature a chapeau in the way that it does. Remove the escutcheon of pretence and it would have five stars (no criticism at all of the artwork).

In his other Facebook page (why do people assign to themselves the status of "Public Figure"?) he lends the impression that he would rather like the coronet of a baron of the UK Peerage!


Sunday, 24 January 2021

A dream which turned into a nightmare.

A dream which turned into a nightmare. Since this article was published, the owner of the castle placed himself into bankruptcy and late last year the castle was offered for sale, by the joint receivers, for offers over £2M with sealed bids. Whether or not it was sold I have no idea but it begs the question why on earth would anyone want to buy it with so many prohibition notices slapped on it!

This article can be found in the Staffordshire Evening Sentinel (full credit to them for all images etc.]here:

Tuesday, 19 January 2021

Cecil R. J. Humphery-Smith OBE

 Cecil R. J. Humphery-Smith OBE

The Institute of Heraldic & Genealogical Studies, which he founded, has today announced the death of Cecil Humphery-Smith OBE :

Cecil R.J. Humphery-Smith had a wide and varied experience of studying British ancestry in the UK, and throughout Europe and overseas over more than 60 years, Cecil R.J.Humphery-Smith instructed classes for London University for some forty-five years, producing certificate, advanced and diploma courses. In 1957 he introduced the concept of Family History and the British Vital Records Index.

He had also taught courses for the Oxford University Department for Extra-Mural Studies and subsequently for the University of Kent School of Continuing Education. He also lectured and broadcast on radio and TV widely abroad in North America and in Europe.

As Principal of the Institute in Canterbury he established a successful correspondence course and graded assessment examination structure which enjoy world wide recognition and acclaim. These examinations lead to accredited diploma and licentiate awards.

He was involved with the following organizations:

  • Founded The Institute of Heraldic and Genealogical Studies, taking it to Northgate, Canterbury in 1961
  • Councillor and Academician of l'Academie Internationale d'Héraldique
  • Vice-President of the Heraldry Society
  • Fellow of the Royal Heraldry Society of Canada
  • Secretary-General of the XIIIth International Congress of Genealogy and Heraldry (London 1976)
  • Secretary-General of the VIIIth Colloquium International d'Héraldique (Canterbury 1993)
  • Member of the Bureau Permanent des Congres Internationaux des Sciences Généalogique et Héraldique since 1974 (Secretary-General 1994-97)

Following post-doctoral research on antibiotics as a biochemist he spent some twenty years in the field of food quality control whilst also studying archives and lecturing on subjects auxiliary to history for London and other Universities (1951-1996). With heraldry as a hobby since childhood, he established the first School for Family History Studies in 1957 and in 1961 founded the Institute. He was appointed a Vice-President of The Cambridge University Heraldry Society in 1954 and is closely associated with several other national and international organisations in the field. Avid Bergman laureate and d'Altenstein Prize for heraldic studies (1961). Prix Dalenda for medieval studies (1995) and Gustav von Numers prize for portfolio of heraldic art and design (1996). Freedom of the City of London since 1967, he was liveried of the Broiderers Company and Scriveners Company (Court member and honorary historian). Knight of Obedience, Order of St John, SMOM. Fellow of the Society of Antiquaries and several other societies in the fields of study internationally. A frequent broadcaster on radio and previously on television, he was the author of many books, standard reference sources and numerous learned articles.

Mr Humphery-Smith was appointed an Officer of the Order of the British Empire (OBE) in the Birthday Honours List, 2004.

[Obituary courtesy of the International Association of Amateur Heralds]

Monday, 21 December 2020

Designing arms: Oh dear, where to begin!

 I saw this post today on one of Facebook's many heraldry forums but before I had a chance to respond the original poster had disabled comments. It's a pity that the post wasn't removed altogether because, without comments, it could be an encouragement to others to follow an example of complete bad practice.  

I have removed the details of the artist but I should make it clear that although I have no criticism of the artistic/digital skills displayed in the image, I do feel that it ought to be the duty of a artist, when asked to undertake heraldic work such as this, to question what he is being asked to produce and, where possible, try to protect his client from criticism by pointing out the difficulties inherent in the commission; here we clearly have an example of an artist who was pleased with the quality of this work and has posted it on Facebook, in order to advertise his skills, but has encountered nothing but criticism.    

Where to begin?? Here we have an example of the claim that the arms have been designed by the person commissioning the work when all, it seems to me, that has been done is that the would be armiger has pinched the arms of Redvers, Earls of Devon (and a few more with the same arms) for the first and fourth quarter (Or, a lion rampant Azure) and those of the first quarter of the arms of Baron Brabourne (Azure, three cross-crosslets fitchée between two bendlets or (Knatchbull)) for the second and third quarters. 

I have no idea who the would be new armiger is but I am pretty sure that he isn't entitled to the helm of a British knight or baronet. Perhaps he has quartered these arms because he believes he is entitled to them because, somewhere in his history/genealogy, there appears the surnames of Redvers and Knatchbull without fully understanding that arms don't belong to surnames. Either way, these arms are supposed to be a newly devised and assumed creation so quarterings for newly devised arms would not be appropriate let alone the usurpation of existing arms.

I came to the thread on Facebook after comments had been turned off and if there were any existing comments, it appears that they have been deleted. My suggestion would be to delete the whole thing as presently it exists as an embarrassment to both artist and client.  


Dame Elizabeth Grosvenor, 1628.

 Funeral Certificates Dame Elizabeth Grosvenor, 1628. Daughter and sole heir to Sir Peter Warberton of Grafton [1st husband Sir Thomas Stanl...

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