Thursday, 30 September 2010

Oh dear - what a balzup!

Most armorists I know have "issues" with heraldic bucket shops ; but there is generally little we can do and so we tend to just jog along uncomfortably side by side. Nowadays the vendor usually starts his sales pitch with something akin to "we guarantee to research and find your family coat of arms" but somewhere, usually in the smallest of small print, he will have a disclaimer stating that coats of arms do not belong to surnames but to individuals; I like to convince myself that many purchasers of these memorials go on to become real heraldry students and if that is the case then it ain't so bad.

Just occasionally however, a really appalling example of ignorance comes to my attention. This one perpetuates the cringe-worthy myth that charges and tinctures have fixed and romantic meanings.  Worst of all though is the absolute marketing faux pas of making the type of fundamental spelling error on your advertising material indicating that you really don't know your subject at all.

marketing faux pas

The really sad thing is that he will have actually sold some of these and they will be proudly displayed by their owners all over the world!

Wednesday, 29 September 2010

A Mainwaring dilemma.

The armorial bearings of Mainwaring of Nantwich as recorded in the Visitations of 1613 are: Argent, two bars Gules, in chief a mascle Sable. In the College of Arms ruling entitled "The Bearing of Arm by Women decreed by the Kings of Arms in 1997" it is stated that "An unmarried woman may continue to bear her paternal arms on a lozenge, oval or similar vehicle of display (not being an escutcheon or a colourable imitation thereof) or on a banner". Taking these rules, the Mainwaring of Nantwich armorial bearings can be borne by father and unmarried daughter as illustrated below:

The Mainwaring dilemma.

This creates something of a dilemma when the arms on a lozenge are interpreted per the above direction because rule 9 states that "Divorced women should (as hitherto) revert to their paternal arms on a lozenge until remarriage; the use of a mascle to indicate divorce will be optional".

The mascle in the Mainwaring arms is anything but optional; perhaps we shouldn't jump to conclusions when applying the 1997 rules!

Tuesday, 28 September 2010

Hockenhull of Prenton

Latest updated image on the website is that of Hockenhull of Prenton. The crest of the arms as recorded in the 1613 Visitations differs to that of 1580. The 1580 crest is that of Hockenhull of Hockenhull differenced (for cadency) by a crescent as in the arms however, that of 1613 has dispensed with the crescent and differenced the crest by way of changing the tinctures of the arrowhead.



Hockenhull of PrentonArms: Quarterly
1 & 4 Argent, an ass's head erased Sable, a crescent for cadency [Hockenhull]
2 Sable, three crescents Argent [Gleave]
3 Argent, on a bend Sable three spears' heads of the first [Prenton]

Crest: A buck's head Argent, erased and attired Or, pierced through the nostrils with an arrow Argent, headed in base Azure.

Friday, 24 September 2010

The Origins of Fabulous Beasts

Just a reminder that tomorrow Ralph Brocklebank, FRHSC, FHS will present his talk on The Origins of Fabulous Beasts to The Cheshire Heraldry Society.

The armorial bearings of Ralph Brocklebank

Details of all the society's talks can be found here.

Thursday, 23 September 2010

The application of heraldry.

I am quite often called upon to give a very brief written (postal) response to an heraldic or family genealogical question and so for quite some time now I have been toying with the idea of having some postcards printed with my arms on the image side. Having explored the cost of this, I found it to be relatively expensive and so the idea fell into abeyance.

Earlier this month it occurred to me that my broadband provider has a number of perks, one of which is the ability to automatically back up ones computer files onto their mainframe at regular intervals along with online storage of images. Included with this is the ability to have 50 photos professionally printed off free of charge each month (the first three months post and packaging was also free). Unless you are an absolute photo enthusiast, eventually the desire to have ones photos printed off wains and the perk becomes forgotten. I decided to take advantage of the offer once more and had fifty of the same image printed off onto a postcard sized photo. I paid less than a pound sterling for postage and today they arrived. I shall use them as glossy postcards or postal notes for those quick replies.

A quick and inexpensive application of heraldry.

Marvelous  :)

Friday, 17 September 2010

Congratulations to a fellow heraldic blogger.

I have just heard that Fr Guy W D Selvester, a well known and respected amateur herald and fellow blogger has been accepted by the Académie Internationale d'Héraldique as an Associate Member. This is a signal honor as Fr Guy is only the third citizen of the United States who is currently a member. Fr Guy is thought to be the only clergyman member at the moment.

Membership is in two categories: Academician (of which there are only ever 75 at one time) and Associate. Fr Guy stated that he is "very pleased indeed".

Hearty congratulations are extended to Fr Guy from here at Cheshire Heraldry.

The armorial bearings of Fr Guy W D Selvester

Monday, 13 September 2010

Caldecott and Cartoons

I've just revamped the Caldecott arms for the illustrations of the 1613 Visitations and I was reminded that the illustrator of children's books, Ralph Caldecott, had an interest in his own family heraldry going so far as to depict he and his brother (who had co-authored with him their one and only book "Aesop's Fables") in humorous heraldic cartoon form. The image can be found inside the cover of Aesop's Fables.

I am grateful to the Randolf Caldecott Society UK for the image which illustrates this piece.

Caldecott Brothers

Their arms are:

Arms: Argent, a fess Azure fretted Or between three Cinquefoils Gules.
 Crest:  On a wreath an Ostrich proper.

Sunday, 12 September 2010

Visitations of 1613- Transcription error - Edgerton of Ridley

The Harleian MS for the Visitations of Chester of 1613 records the second quarter of the arms of Egerton of Ridley as  Or, three piles in pile Gules, on a canton Argent a griffin segreant Sable [Basset]. I believe this to be incorrect.

These are the arms of Ralph Bassett of Blore which are: Or, three piles in point Gules, on a canton Argent a griffin segreant Sable. They are correctly recorded in the MS for the Visitations of 1558.

Illustrated below are the arms as I believe they should be.



Egerton of Ridley
Arms: Quarterly of nine -
1 Argent, a lion rampant Gules, between three pheons Sable, a crescent for cadency [Egerton]
2 Or, three piles in pile Gules, on a canton Argent a griffin segreant Sable [Basset] **
3 Quarterly Gules and Argent, a cross Ermine, a bordure of the second [Beke]
4 Argent, a fesse vaire Or and Gules, between three water bougets Sable, a mullet for cadency [Dethick]
5 Vaire, Argent and Sable [Meynell]
6 Sable, a lion rampant Argent [?]
7 Argent, three bendlets [enhanced] Gules [Byron]
8 Argent, on a bend Azure, three annulets Or, in sinister chief a cross-crosslet fitchy of the second [Colwick]
9 Argent, a greyhound passant Sable, in chief a mullet Gules for cadency [Holford]        

** I believe this to be a mistake in the Visitations transcription. The blazon should be: 2  Or, three piles in point Gules, on a canton Argent a griffin segreant Sable. [Bassett]. These are the arms of Sir Ralph Bassett of Blore.

Friday, 10 September 2010

Sleeping Lions

I've just re-done the image of Brown of Upton and it reminded me of a game enjoyed by primary school children (or perhaps it was more appreciated by their teachers!).

Brown of Upton, near ChesterArms - Argent, two bendlets Sable between as many pellets.
Crest: On a mount Vert a lion couchant Argent, charged with three gouttes de sang on the neck.  

Salford Annual Heraldry Day.

Cheshire Heraldry Society Chairman, Harold Storey, sent a note to members today reminding us that Derrick Walkden and The Lancashire Heraldry Group have taken over the running of the Annual Study Day at Salford from The Greater Manchester Heraldry Society. 

The meeting will run from 10 am to 4 pm on 7th. October, at Hemsley House Masonic Hall, SALFORD.
This is opposite Salford University and there is good parking space at the rear of the building.
Talks scheduled are -
Malcolm HOWE on "The Red Rose in Lancashire Heraldry"
Ben EDWARDS on "16C. Armorial Glass from Hampton Court at Preston"
Mike CRESSWELL on "Beastly Boroughs & Monstrous Municipalities"
Margaret EDWARDS on "The Making of a Stained Glass Window"
A good buffet lunch will be served, plus refreshments at the end.  This is paid for in the entrance fee of £15.
You can pay by cheque made out to "LFHHS - Heraldry Group".  If you post this to A. D. Walkden, 2 Butterlands,
PRESTON, PR1 5TJ, it will assist them in arranging the catering.

Wednesday, 8 September 2010

Puns, cants and a bit of fun.

Just for a bit of fun, I've designed a logo for a tee shirt - if you have any punning or canting design ideas why not share them with me ? ... no one else needs to know!

Tuesday, 7 September 2010

The earl of Macclesfield

I suspect that I'm no different to most heraldry addicts in that I regularly search for other addicts contributions to the world of heraldry. Yesterday, a Cheshire link caught my eye on David Appleton's excellent blog.


It's surprising where heraldry with links to Cheshire fetches up and David's blog entry reminded me that I hadn't yet found a home on the web for the image I made some time ago of the arms of the earl of Macclesfield.

The armorial bearings of the earl of Macclesfield

My reader will already know that I have a fondness for Cheshire heraldry but I have another sort of (very tenuous)link with the earl of Macclesfield (of the second creation). We were both born in Leek. That however is where our career paths separated!

Monday, 6 September 2010

What tincture rules?



12the quarter: Gules, a lion rampant Sable guttee de l'armes [ ] ?

The 12th quarter of the arms of Brereton of Ashley, as recorded in the Visitations of Chester 1613, are an unusual but not unpleasant design. Unfortunately they are not identified and in fact marked as "doubtful" - probably because of the dreaded tincture rule (which is in fact more than once broken in "genuine" ancient Cheshire arms).

Saturday, 4 September 2010

Bosdon of Newbold Astbury

Bosdon of Newbold Astbury

Bosdon of Newbold Astbury

Bosdon of Newbold Astbury
Described in the 1613 Visitations of Chester as - Arms: Argent, a fess between three d Sable, these arms obviously predate any recorded grant and therefore have no blazon. According to the Visitations recorded by the Harleian Society the arms are taken from an image temp Henry VII in The College of Arms. 

According to the MS the charge in this coat has been called a fish hook, a Roman "S" and a bird bolt, but it does not seem to be any of these. Mr. Everard Green, Rouge Dragon, who contributed the drawing from which the above facsimile representation is taken, suggests that the object may perhaps be a winding-horn, worn around the neck of the huntsman.

Thursday, 2 September 2010

Burke's Peerage & Gentry - International Armorial Register

Just between you and me, I thought I'd just let you know that I'm in the process of obtaining quotes for the printing and publication of Volume One of The Armorial Register Limited's book entitled "Burke's Peerage & Gentry International Register of Armorial Bearings". Here's a taster of the cover and a draft registration page:

“Burke’s Peerage & Gentry International Register of Armorial Bearings”

Wednesday, 1 September 2010

You are cordially invited ....

Today was one of those rare but pleasant days where the post (mail) was dominated not by bills but by heraldry:  I received my copy of Tak Tent, the magazine of The Heraldry Society of Scotland (always a welcome read) along with a pleasant note from Alan Fennely, Secretary of the Greater Manchester Heraldry Society, thanking me for agreeing to present my talk on The Heraldry of the 1605 Conspirators. It is always a pleasure to hear from Alan and I shall look forward to meeting once again a number of increasingly familiar faces in Manchester in November.

The Heraldry of the Gunpowder Conspirators


Power point slides of the Gunpowder talk.


 The Talk is to be held on Saturday 6th November at 2 p.m. at The Friends Meeting House on Mount Street Manchester (behind the Central Reference Library) and you are cordially invited to attend.

Tak Tent informs all that The Heraldry Society of Scotland has now published its syllabus for 2010 - 11.

Lectures are held in the Royal Scots Club 30 Abercromby Place Edinburgh (unless otherwise noted) and I can vouch for the warm reception guests will receive so if you are able to attend, whether a member of the Society or not, please do so. I reproduce the syllabus below for your benefit:

Saturday 25th September 2010 - Ulster Scots, their heraldic connections - Prof Jim Floyd.

Saturday 30th October 2010 - The Herald's Tabard: The Outward Show - Mark Dennis, Ormond Pursuivant of Arms.

Saturday 4th December 2010 - The St. Andrew Lecture - Lord Lyon Sir James Balfour Paul - an appreciation - Charles Burnett, Ross Herald of Arms. ........... Followed by The St. Andrew Dinner.

Saturday 29th January 2011 - Heraldic Quiz 0 Liam Devlin, Quiz Master.

Saturday 26th February 2011 - The Death of Heraldry (provisional title) Clive Cheeseman, Richmond Herald.

Saturday 26th March 2011 - Scottish Medical Heraldry - Dr. Beverly Bergman.

Saturday 30th April 2011 - Excursion.

Saturday 28th May 2011 - AK Bell Library Perth - AGM & Member's Miscellany.

Tak Tent


And last but most certainly not least - a reminder that the syllabus for the meetings of the Cheshire heraldry Society can be found on their web page: http://cheshire-heraldry.org.uk/society

Malta and its so called Chief Herald

The armorial bearings newly devised and used by the "Office of the Chief Herald of Malta". You may be aware that earlier in...

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