“What is it that induceth you, what stirs you up to believe, or who told you that white signifieth faith, and blue constancy? An old paltry book, say you, sold by the hawking pedlars and balladmongers, entitled The Blason of Colours. Who made it? Whoever it was, he was wise in that he did not set his name to it. But, besides, I know not what I should rather admire in him, his presumption or his s...ottishness. His presumption and overweening, for that he should without reason, without cause, or without any appearance of truth, have dared to prescribe, by his private authority, what things should be denotated and signified by the colour: which is the custom of tyrants, who will have their will to bear sway in stead of equity, and not of the wise and learned, who with the evidence of reason satisfy their readers. His sottishness and want of spirit, in that he thought that, without any other demonstration or sufficient argument, the world would be pleased to make his blockish and ridiculous impositions the rule of their devices.” - Rabelais
I'm an Academic Herald. I'm not a "real" herald; I don't design and register people's coats of arms (though I can certainly suggest designs for those who might be interested). What I do is study, research, teach, and write about heraldry. (You can find some of my books about heraldry and a list of my articles and presentations about heraldry at "Our Website" below.) And I like to share what I have learned about heraldry, hence this blog. I hope that you'll find it informative, interesting at least occasionally, and worth your time to come back. Got a question? Comments? Feel free to ask or let me know. I'd love to hear from you. You can find my contact information in my Profile.
In a recent (April 9, 2013) news article, kentnews.co.uk noted the display in the Natural History Museum in London of the first substantiall...
Genealogical Speakers Guild
Genealogical Speakers Guild
Thursday, December 10, 2009
Wearable Heraldry for the Head
Last post I noted the gimme cap that I bought in Cambridge with the arms of Harvard University on it. Today, I’m showing of three more caps, two with coats of arms and one with a town seal that is only semi-heraldic.
On the left, we have a cap I bought in Quebec in 2008 during the International Congress of Genealogical and Heraldic Sciences held there. The cap was bought at the gift shop in the Citadel, the large star fort that once was the main defense for the city, and is currently the home of the Canadian 22nd Regiment. The coat of arms on the Regimental badge is, appropriately enough, the arms of the Province of Quebec.
On the right is the cap I picked up at the Edinburgh Tattoo in 2006, which we attended while at the Congress held in St. Andrews, Scotland. The Tattoo has its own coat of arms, with the white saltire of Scotland and the castle of Edinburgh splitting the chief between them.
Finally, though less truly heraldic, is the seal of the town of Upton, Massachusetts, which some of my ancestors lived in (including my third great-grandfather and his first family, about whom none of his later family seems to have known. His first wife and their infant son both died early and are buried in one of the older cemeteries in the town. And, yes, for the genealogists among you who are asking, while we were there I got pictures of their tombstones). The seal contains a sheaf of wheat (heraldic “garb”), indicating the primarily agricultural base of the town.