Monday, July 29, 2019

An Armorial Memorial, with an Armorial Mystery

Continuing on around the Cloister at Canterbury Cathedral, we find this armorial memorial set into the floor:

Here resteth the body of
ELIZABETH the Wife of the
Revd WM BRODERIP Minor Canon
of this Church
who died April 19th 1751 Aged 35
and likewise the Revd
who died April 17th 1764 Aged 55.
WM BRODERIP died June 3 1770 aged 26
8th 1774 aged 30 Years.
JANE BRODERIP Relict of the
Revd William Broderip died Augst
10th 1778 aged 67 Years.

Canon Broderip’s first wife was Elizabeth Terry of Canterbury.

It is the arms on the memorial that lead us to our heraldic mystery, though.

We have seen the arms on the dexter side of the shield (to the viewer's left) in our immediately preceding post regarding the memorial to Isaac Terry.

Here, we have: Ermine on a pile gules a leopard’s face jessant-de-lis or (Terry), impaling _____ a chevron _____ between three covered cups _____ (Broderip?).

It is highly unusual to see an impalement with the wife’s arms to dexter (the viewer’s left); that place is normally reserved for the husband’s arms.

And about the husband's arms (ignoring for now that they are placed to sinister, in the place normally reserved for the wife's arms):

Neither Burke’s General Armory nor Papworth’s Dictionary of British Armorials shows “a chevron between three covered cups” for Broderip.

Papworth cites various color combinations as belonging to Butler/Boteler, Pellet/Pellett/Pillett, Sellers/Sallers/Sollers, Warcup/Warcop, and Strange/Straunge, but not to Broderip.

Burke gives two different coats for Broderip/Brodrepp/Brodribb. One is Gules three swans close argent; the other is Gules a cross couped or between four barnacle fowls (another, swans) argent. Obviously, neither of those two Broderip coats matches the chevron and covered cups here.

So I am at a bit of a loss to explain what is going on here. Why are Elizabeth Terry's paternal arms on the dexter side of this impalement? Where do the arms on the sinister side of the impalement come from? Whose are they, Broderip or someone else's?

I can only quote a line from the movie Shakespeare In Love: "It's a mystery."


  1. From Archaeologia Cantiana, vol. 25, p. 144, the description of a chalice of silver in St Mary of Charity of Feversham, Kent:
    Inscribed on the bowl, "Ex dono Ann Terry,"* beneath the following coat of arms: "Ermine, on a pile a leopard's head jessantde-lis;" impaling, "A chevron between three covered cups," for Spillett. Ann Terry, wife of Isaac Terry, Gent., three times Mayor of Faversham, and daughter of Edward Spillett, Gent., once Mayor of Faversham, died 24 February 1729, aged 70 years.

    So it seems likely that Elizabeth Terry, b. c 1716, first wife of William Broderip (married 24 Dec 1738) and mother of William and Elizabeth buried in the same tomb, was also daughter of Isaac Terry and Ann Spillett.

  2. Thank you for that information, François! That does make things a little more clear. It would appear from this, then, that someone thought that these were the arms of Elizabeth (Terry) Broderip, though in fact they are the marshaled arms of her father and mother, Isaac and Ann (Spillett) Terry.

    There are also some monumental inscriptions with the Terry and Spillett names at the St. Mary of Charity Church in Faversham, which have been transcribed at

    I've not yet been able to find the arms of Spillett in a review of "the usual suspects" that is to say, Burke's "General Armory", Rietstap's "Armorial Général", Burke's "Landed Gentry", and Fox-Davies' "Armorial Families", or the four-volume "Dictionary of British Arms". It's a shame; it would be nice to be able to know the tinctures of the Spillett arms.

  3. In addition, I have reviewed Sims index of Herald's Visitations and other Genealogical manuscripts in the British Museum, 1849. There is no mention of Spillett for Kent. Is there another source? Thanks.

    1. There probably are, but then we're getting into some rare sources, and the cost-to-benefit ratio of searching them starts making me wonder how much it is worth, just to try to find these arms listed somewhere. (Especially if, as not infrequently happens, the arms were "assumed without authorization").