Monday, November 18, 2019

Heraldry near the Cathedral Gift Shop

Like a lot of other Major Tourist Attractions™, Canterbury Cathedral has a gift shop area where you can buy picture postcards, guidebooks in several languages, knickknacks and a wide array of other souvenirs. (And, frankly, if you get the chance to visit on of these places, I highly recommend buying at the very least a guidebook. And maybe a picture postcard or two of something that catches your eye. And maybe a little souvenir. Or two. Or three. Frankly, when my wife and I are together in one of these places, we seldom get out of there for less than US$100 or more. The most common phrase heard while we are in the gift shop is, "But we need it." But I digress.)

The gift shop in Canterbury Cathedral is off in one corner near a wooden door in a carved stone frame with two coats of arms, each held by an angel (I believe, unless their "wings" are actually meant to be a depiction of the back of a chair or some such. If that is the case, then they may be depictions of monks or other ecclesiastics).

Both coats are arms which we have seen before.

The angel on the left side is holding the arms of Simon Sudbury, Archbishop of Canterbury 1375-1381, Sable a hound sejant within a bordure engrailed argent.

The angel on the right side is holding the arms of the See of Canterbury, which we have seen all over the Cathedral, the Cathedral grounds, and indeed all around the City of Canterbury, Azure a cross-staff or with its cross argent overall a pall argent charged with four crosses formy [the crosses ought to be formy fitchy] sable.

Anyway, it was nice to have a little heraldry to look at while my wife was picking out a "few things" to bring home from the Cathedral gift shop. (We have one of those equal, 50/50 marriages; she decides what things to buy, and I pay for them. It's an even division of labor that way, apparently. 💏)

So if you ever have the opportunity to visit Canterbury Cathedral, be sure to drop by the gift shop, buy a guidebook and whatnot, and stop to say hello to Archbishop Sudbury and the little fellows holding his and the See's arms.

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