Monday, March 28, 2011

Heraldry in Florence, Part Twenty-Five

The offering for today is a series of arms set into roundels in the exterior of a church in the heart of Florence. Some are simply painted (and weathered!). Others look like they have been done in ceramic. All of them are beautifully done.

da Calamaria: Or a ram clymant sable [one armorial states that the ram is charged on the shoulder with an inescutcheon of argent a cross sable].

Agolanti: Gules an eagle displayed or.

I am not certain of the identity of these arms. The canting arms of Portinari are: Or a door between two lions combattant sable, but the arms here do not match that blazon. The field here seems to be argent; the door is argent set in a stone frame that I think is gules (red).

The paint is faded and thus the tinctures are trickier to identify. It may be Del Rosso: Vairy argent and gules, or Marchi: Vairy sable and argent.

Florence (Commune): Per pale gules and argent. (This coat is also seen as the reverse, Per pale argent and gules.)


  1. That first Della Robbia medallion is truly amazing with the almond-shaped shield!
    Thanks for sharing all these unique examples.

  2. You are very welcome! There is just so much really great heraldry, and great depictions of heraldry, in Florence. I really want to go back there!

  3. Correspondence Jane G. has pointed out to me that these arms are not the arms of families, but guild crests. From top to bottom: 1.Guild of Butchers, Poulterers, and Fishmongers; 2. Wool Merchants; 3. Silk Merchants; 4. Vair Preparers and Furriers; and 5. Linen-weavers and Peddlers.

    Thank you, Jane, for clearing up the identification of these arms!

  4. (That first word should, of course, be "Correspondent." Apparently I am _way_ too used to typing the word "correspondence" in my job as a legal secretary, so much so that it's automatic even when I'm trying to type a different, but similar, word.)

  5. Hi, I am interested in the above coat of arms with the door with 2 angels either side. Could you tell me where this piece is? I am wondering if it is in fact a Portinari coat of arm, as although the Portinaris may have come from Portico, and hence the name, I have also been told the name means 'The gates of heaven' which if broken down to 'Door in the air it would be , 'Porta in aria' which sounds right. Portinari is my Grandmother's Family name, so would very much like to get to the bottom of it 😊 Thanks for any help or light on this.

  6. I am a Portinari born in London.