Thursday, March 23, 2023

The Arms of the "Other" Trinity

We've already seen the arms of Trinity College in a previous post (and may see them again in a later one, if I can adequately identify the accompanying personal arms), but today we're going to look at the arms of a different Cambridge educational institution: Trinity Hall.

Trinity Hall (as opposed to Trinity College!) was founded in 1350 by William Bateman, Bishop of Norwich, for the study of canon and civil law. The college received a Royal Charter from King Edward III in 1351.

The arms of Trinity Hall are based on those of the founder, but where Bishop Bateman's arms were Sable a crescent ermine within a bordure engrailed argent, the college's arms are Sable a crescent within a bordure engrailed ermine, thus making the bordure as well as the crescent ermine.

According to an entry in the Master's Statute Book, since lost, Bishop Bateman's father had borne these arms with three crescents; the arms with three crescents passed to his eldest son, while the second son bore them with two crescents, and the third son with one crescent for difference. That said, evidence made, and lost, so long after the event should be treated with caution.

The present arms of the college, differenced from the arms of the founder by making the bordure engrailed ermine, were granted in 1575 by Robert Cooke, Clarenceux King of Arms.

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