Monday, October 14, 2019

The Coronation(s) Window in Canterbury Cathedral

Yes, I know that they named it the "Coronation Window", but really, considering that it contains the principal parties for two different coronations, shouldn't it really be called the "Coronations Window"?

As you can see in the photograph above, the lower register windows portray the figures of the 1937 coronation of King George VI (center left) with his Queen, Elizabeth (the late Queen Mother), and Princess Elizabeth (far left), now Queen Elizabeth II, and the late Princess Margaret (far right).

The upper register windows show the figures of the 1953 Coronation of Elizabeth II (center left) and Prince Philip, with their two children at the time, Prince Charles and Princess Anne. In the far left window, we have the four Lords Spiritual: the Archbishop of Canterbury, Geoffrey Fisher, the Archbishop of York, and the Bishops of London and Winchester. The far right window portrays the four Lords Temporal: the Lord Chancellor, the Lord Great Chamberlain, the Lord High Chamberlain, and the Earl Marshall.

Also in that far right window is a banner of the achievement of the Royal Arms of Great Britain and Northern Ireland.

At the very peak of the window, just above the portion of the window showing the Annunciation, is another depiction of the Royal Arms, Quarterly: 1 and 4, England; 2, Scotland; and 3, Ireland, surmounted by a crown.

And finally, in between the upper register of windows and the upper part of the window we find two Royal badges and three coats of arms:

The Royal badges are a crowned Tudor rose, and a crowned portcullis.

The coats of arms are, from left to right:

The Salt-Fishmongers Company, Azure three pairs of keys crossed in saltire or on a chief gules three dolphins embowed argent.

The City of London, Argent a cross and in dexter chief a sword gules.

Barnewell, Per pale argent and gules three beavers statant in pale counterchanged.

The window was originally donated by John Barnewell (d. 1478), the London merchant who provided the priory with salt fish.

If you look carefully (you can click on the image above to see a larger photo), you can see that the dolphins on the chief of the Salt-Fishmongers Company also surround each of the three shields.

It's a beautiful piece of stained glass work; the two coronations by Sir Ninian Comper are a 1953 replacement of the 19th Century glass which was destroyed during World War II.

And, of course, the heraldry in it is nice to see, too!

Thursday, October 10, 2019

An Officer and a Gentleman, Who Is Also a Field Marshal and an Earl

Our next armorial memorial is one erected by his friends to Field Marshal Sir John Denton Pinkstone French, Earl of Ypres.

A somewhat controversial figure over the course of his career, he entered WWI as basically a cavalry officer used to thinking of movement who found himself in a stagnant war of entrenchments. But go to his Wikipedia article (,_1st_Earl_of_Ypres) to get a better feel for the ups and downs of his career, as well as his strengths and his weaknesses.

The plaque on his memorial reads in full:

This memorial was

erected by his friends
in memory of
The Right Honble
Sir John Denton
Pinkstan French
Earl of Ypres
P.C.K. G.C.B. O.M. G.C.V.O. C.M.G.
Born 1852 – Died 1925
He commanded the British Army
in France from the outbreak of
the Great War to December 1915
His courageous leadership in
front of Ypres helped to save the
Allied Forces in the great crisis
~ of the War ~

Not sure how well his friends here really knew him, since they seem to have gotten his third name incorrectly. Burke’s Peerage and Baronetage (1938), gives his name as John Denton Pinkstone French, 1st Earl of Ypres (created 5 June 1922), Viscount French of Ypres and of High Lake, county Roscommon (created 1 January 1916).

His arms are blazoned: Ermine a chevron sable [a crescent for difference] (which crescent does not appear on his achievement here). The shield is surmounted by an earl’s coronet. The crest is: A dolphin embowed proper (that is, vert detailed gules). The supporters to his shield are: Dexter, A lion guardant or supporting a staff proper with a banner of the Union; Sinister, A lion or supporting a staff proper with a banner paly of three sable or and gules. (In simpler terms, his supporters are the British lion holding the Union flag and the Belgian lion holding the Belgian flag.) The motto scroll, which doubles for the compartment, reads: Malo mori quam fœdari (Death rather than disgrace).

Monday, October 7, 2019

Two More Fotherby Memorials

In our post of September 23, we saw the arms of Priscilla Fotherby, marshaling those of her husband, William Kingsley.

Today, we look at the memorial with the arms of two different Thomas Fotherbys; one of them Priscilla's parents, Thomas and Elizabeth (Moyle) Fotherby.

Regarding the first Thomas Fotherby, annoyingly, the two photos I took of this floor slab were both badly blurred. (I always take at least two pictures of everything, because often enough, one of them is blurry. Here, apparently, I should have taken a third.)

Hic requiesunt cineres Dni Thomae Fotherby qui Thomae filius Martini nepos Episcopi Sarisbesiumsis. [Followed by a long, but alas, entirely unreadable in my photos, inscription all in Latin.] I did, however, manage to get an in-focus photo of the arms on the memorial:

These arms are blazoned: Gules a cross of nine lozenges at each end a fleur-de-lis or (Fotherby); impaled by Argent two bendlets azure within a bordure engrailed sable (Hamon)

The crest is A falcon wings expanded proper beaked or holding in its mouth an acorn or leaved vert.

For our next memorial with the Fotherby coat of arms, we have:

Here lieth the Body of Thomas Fotherby Esq son of
Martin, sometime Bishop of Sarum: he married Elizabeth
daughter of Robert Moyle of Buckwel Esq by whom he left
three children, Thomas, Priscilla, and Margaret: aged 65
Yeares, he died Novr 27 anno dom. 1674.

Martin Fotherby, S.T.P., Thomas’ father, was Canon of Canterbury 1596 and subsequently Bishop of Sarum. He died in 1619 and was buried in the Church of All Hallows, Lombard St. London where his monument was burnt with the church in the fire of 1666.

Among his three children mentioned is, of course, Priscilla, who married William Kingsley, and whose memorial we have seen before.

Here, the arms are blazoned: Gules a cross of nine lozenges at each end a fleur-de-lis or (Fotherby); impaled by Gules a mule passant within a bordure argent (Moyle)

The crest, once again, is A falcon wings expanded proper beaked or holding in its mouth an acorn or leaved vert.

The Moyle arms are, of course, canting; that is, they are a play on the name “Moyle” by having the primary charge of a “mule”.

Not everyone, not even all heraldic authors, share my enjoyment of cleverly done canting arms. Regarding "armes parlantes" or canting arms, James Dallaway, in his Inquiries into the Origin and Progress of the Science of Heraldry in England, 1793, p. 275, wrote:

Wriothesley and Barker abstained in a great measure from this practice in the concessions of arms which were made by them; but so congenial was it with the taste of king James and the fashions which he patronised, that many bearings of this description were assumed during his frivolous reign, some of which have been subsequently confirmed to their families by the college of heralds. Some respect may be due to the few instances of high antiquity, but they should be generally considered as of easy and vulgar application, and very widely deviating from the chast[e]ness and simplicity of pure heraldry.

Needless to say, I disagree. I find well-done canting arms to be appealing, but what do I know? (By way of full disclosure, my own coat of arms is a partial cant on my surname.)

Thursday, October 3, 2019

Two Related Armorial Memorials in Canterbury Cathedral

Continuing our meandering path through Canterbury Cathedral, we came across these two armorial memorials in the floor, related because the wife of the one bears the same arms as the husband in the second.

The first is a memorial to Thomas Hill and his wife, Matilda (Elstob) Hill:

Johan: Hill, Salopien: Armigri et Annae unicae
Filiae et Hæredis Roberti Sontly de Sontly
prope Wrexham in Agro Denbigen Armigi
Filius natu maximus
Hic requiscit
Qui uxorem duxit Matildam Filiam
Caroli Elstob S.T.P. et hujus Eccles.
Ex qua Filios duos et totidem Filias
Mortem obiit die 23 Martii An:
Dom: 1734 Aetastis 42.
Filiarum Altera tantem superstes.
Matilda their daughter died an infant 1727.
Mrs Matilda Hill died May 17th 1779 aged 82.
Charles Hill died January 10th 1780 aged 40.

The marshaled arms of Thomas and Matilda Hill are blazoned: Quarterly: 1 and 4, Ermine on a fess sable a castle triple-towered argent (Hill); 2 and 3, Ermine a lion rampant sable (Sonlly); impaled by Per pale gules and vert a fleur-de-lis argent (Elstob). Crest: A wolf’s head erased azure holding in its mouth a trefoil slipped vert. (The blazon of the crest comes from Fairbairn's Crests; I don’t know where Humphrey-Smith in his Alphabetical Catalogue of Coats of Arms in Canterbury Cathedral found the “overlaid with two bars” on the wolf’s head he blazons there.)

There is a coat of arms found in Bolton’s American Armory in use by a Hill (Ermine on a fess sable a two-towered castle proper), but the crest is entirely different (Issuant from a tower two branches erect).

I do not find the "Sontly" inscribed on the memorial in any of the general references. I suspect that “Sontly de Sontly” is an error for “Sonlly”. (Well, unless the “Sonlly” in Burke’s General Armory is an error for “Sontly”. I mean, it's not like Burke's doesn't also contain errors.)

Then, nearby, we found a memorial to Charles Elstob, the father of Matilda (Estob) Hill of the previous memorial:

Canonicus hujas Ecclesiae
Obit 19 Novembris
Ao Dni 1721, Aetatis 74
et MATILDA uxor ejus
Obit 30 Junii
Ao 1739 Aetat 81.
Hoc tumulo condiuntur.

The blazon of the marshaled arms here is: Per pale gules and vert a fleur-de-lis argent (Elstob); impaled by Argent on a fess engrailed gules between three martlets sable three cinquefoils argent (Payne). Crest: A fleur-de-lis [argent].

Charles Elstob was Prebendary of Canterbury from 1685-1721. His will, probated March 5, 1722, is in the National Archives, Kew. He is less well-known than his niece and nephew, of whom he had guardianship, Elizabeth Elstob (1683-1756), the Anglo-Saxon scholar, and William Elstob (1673-1715), cleric, both of whom have their own entries in the Dictionary of National Biography. Indeed, most of the information available on the internet about Charles Elstob is in his relationship to his niece and nephew.