The alphabet is one set of arbitrary symbols. The figures of heraldry are another set of arbitrary symbols. In the fourteenth century every gentleman knew one: in the twentieth century every gentleman knows the other. The first gentleman was just precisely as ignorant for not knowing that c-a-t spells "cat," as the second gentleman is for not knowing that a St. Andrew's Cross is called a cross saltire, or that vert on gules is bad heraldry. -- G.K. Chesterson
I'm an Academic Herald. I'm not a "real" herald; I don't 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. 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 let me know. I'd love to hear from you. You can find my contact information in my Profile.
* Yes, I know it is commonly referred to as the "Union Jack," but that may be a misnomer, as the term "jack" is generally limited to naval usage. Yes, the Admiralty has said in a 1902 circular that "Their Lordships had decided that either name [Union Flag or Union Jack] could be used officially." (Wikepedia, cf. "Union Jack") Nevertheless, the term "Union Flag" is what was used in King Charles's 1634 proclamation, and you'd think that he would know better than anyone what it should be called.