Tuesday 22 July 2014

A Celebration of Scottish Heraldry

Early in 2011, in anticipation of the 340th anniversary of the Lyon King of Arms Act 1672 The Armorial Register Limited, publishers of The International Register of Arms, invited the submission of digital photographic material for the publication of a fully illustrated book dedicated to the many practical ways in which Scottish Armigers of today enjoy and demonstrate their personal armorial bearings. This book is the result of the generous co-operation of participating Scots armigers.

A Celebration of Scottish Heraldry

This volume is not an armorial; its main purpose is to illustrate practical usage of Scots Armory in the 21st century.

All of those whose arms are recorded within its covers have armorial bearings recorded in the Public Register of All Arms and Bearings in Scotland and participants in this project were invited to submit photographs, along with as much detail as they wished, of any armorial item they have made use of be it their Letters Patent, library painting, crest badge, seal matrix, flag, cutlery, dirks, sporrans, engraved items or anything else which was deemed to be heraldically relevant. As a bare minimum the editors asked that their entry should be illustrated with an original grant of arms or matriculation document and as a concession to privacy it was agreed to blank out addresses etc if such was preferred. The editors have simply put together a number of examples they felt would be of interest to enthusiasts throughout the world and in doing so hope that this would also benefit the favoured heraldic artists and craftsmen of the armigers concerned. Containing 82 Letters Patent and over 233 other images, most of which have never been seen by the general public before, this book brings to life an infectious enthusiasm shared by its armigerous contributors.

Participation in this project was free and the editors thank all contributors for generously sharing with them the armorial bearings they hold so dear. The images illustrating this publication are supplied by the armigers themselves.


Wednesday 9 July 2014

I'm sorry I never got to meet you.

Some time ago, Mrs. Martin was stopped in the street by a neighbour who asked her if it was I who had an interest in heraldry; Mrs. M replied in the affirmative and was informed by the enquirer that she knew of someone who knew of someone in the village who had recently died and amongst the possessions of the deceased lady were a number of heraldry books. Apparently the someone who knew someone had had a vague recollection that they had heard somewhere (probably from someone else who knew someone else) that there was another gentleman in the village who studied heraldry and so all the someones who knew someone else began to ask around until ... well, you get the idea.

Anyway, we thought nothing more of it until yesterday evening said neighbour, in her car, pulled up on our driveway with two bags full of books "I was going to walk up the road with these" she said, "but decided to drive because they were a little too heavy to carry far". She presented me with two carrier bags full of books: "We thought you might like these ... we didn't like the idea that they would just go to a house clearance sale". Needless to say, I thanked the good Samaritan, promised to find a good home for the ones I already had and pledged a donation to the charity of her choice.

Heraldry books

It seems that the lady was quite a keen student of the art and science of heraldry and many of the books contain newspaper cuttings of matters heraldic, one, from the Radio Times, dated June 24th 1949.


I'm delighted that my notoriety brought these books to my door but I can't help feeling just a little bit sad that for a great many years I shared a hobby and enthusiasm with an elderly lady living in the same village and I never had the chance to meet her.

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