Monday, January 18, 2016

Heraldry of the Decadence, Part 2

Or maybe this could be subtitled, "Ministry of Silly Blazons" or some other such Monty Python-esque title.

Anyway, having done planets and gemstones as alternatives to the usual names of the tinctures in English blazon, we turn to some of the even more esoteric (and never used) blazon schemes.

In an attempt to keep some of these various blazon schemes organized, here are four which are thematically linked: blazon by Signs of the Zodiac; Seasons and Times of Day; Months; and Days.

Yes, these have all actually been promoted by one heraldic author or another as a way, I have to assume, to make heraldry even more esoteric and difficult to understand.

Signs of the Zodiac:

Or               Leo
Argent         Cancer
Gules           Aries and Scorpio
Azure           Taurus and Libra
Sable           Capricorn and Amphora
Vert             Gemini and Virgo
Purpure        Sagittarius and Pisces

(The only advantage I can see to this scheme is that by having more than one sign of the Zodiac to use for the name of a color, you reduce the potential of having to repeat that tincture without resorting to the often-confusing "of the first," "of the second," "of the last," etc.)

Seasons and Times of Day:

Or               Noon
Argent         Morning
Gules           Autumn
Azure           Summer
Sable           Winter and Night
Vert             Spring
Purpure        Evening


Or               July
Argent         June
Gules           March and October
Azure           April and September
Sable           December and January
Vert             May and August
Purpure        November and February

(Here, too, we have the opportunity to not repeat the name of a tincture in a blazon. On the other hand, we have to remember two different names for each such color rather than one.)


Or               Sunday
Argent         Monday
Gules           Tuesday
Azure           Thursday
Sable           Saturday
Vert             Friday
Purpure        Wednesday

(Okay, here I can see Sunday and Saturday as Or and Argent, if only because they match the planets blazon scheme of Sol and Luna (sun and moon). But what makes Thursday blue? Or Friday green? I'm at a loss here.)

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