PRECEDENTS OF THE S.C.A. COLLEGE OF ARMS

The tenure of Alisoun MacCoul of Elphane

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Contents A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z

INTRODUCTION TABLE OF HEADINGS


INTRODUCTION

While this volume is entitled "Precedents of Mistress Alisoun MacCoul of Elphane", it would really be much more accurate to entitle it "Precedents, Decisions, Rulings, Interpretations, Restatements and Explanations of the Rules for Submissions As They Have Been Applied to Submissions by Mistress Alisoun MacCoul of Elphane, Laurel Queen of Arms", but that title becomes much too unwieldy. So we try for something simpler in the hopes that the entries herein will not all be considered as breaking new ground or as redefining the Rules for Submissions in some new way.

I have tried to follow the general format and philosophy of Master Baldwin of Erebor, editor of Precedents Vols. I, II and III, in this collection. For a more specific discussion of those, see his Introduction to Precedents III. Not all entries are a precedent per se, but are specific applications or clarifications of the Rules for Submissions.

In January, 1990 the Board of Directors of the Society approved a new set of Rules for Submissions. Thus, this volume of Precedents spans two sets of Rules. From November, 1989 through May, 1990, Mistress Alisoun processed all submissions using both sets of Rules; thus if a submission would pass under either set, it was registered. There were also explications of the new Rules in her decisions, and as a consequence, you will find many comments in this volume of Precedents referring to the "old rules", "new rules", or both. Many of these will be helpful in understanding the philosophy behind the new Rules for Submission.

This combined volume of Mistress Alisoun's Precedents contains all those which have already been published in her Precedents, Volumes I, II, III and IV, with the exceptions that many repetitive rulings have been deleted and reference made to those deleted by the notation "(See also: ...)" following the citation which I considered to be the most clearly worded. In a few other cases, rulings which were clearly overturned by later precedent of Mistress Alisoun have been deleted.

Unless otherwise noted, all citations are direct quotes from Mistress Alisoun in LoARs or CLs. Emendations for clarity are enclosed in [square brackets]. Where material not necessary to the discussion is deleted, such deletions are noted by ellipses (...). Deletions at the beginning or end of a quote are made without comment. When the name of a charge or tincture is not pertinent to the topic, I usually replace it with [charge] or [tincture]. When the name of the submittor was not pertinent to the topic, it is usually replaced with [Name]. Some entries may be longer than necessary. I felt it best to err on the side of conservatism, and sometimes give more background to a decision to ensure that the reader has the information necessary to see why the decision was made the way it was without having to look up the cited LoAR.

A few obvious misspellings have been corrected without comment. Elsewhere, I have used Mistress Alisoun's spellings. (However, responsibility for typographical errors is mine alone.)

Headings are placed here for ease in researching a particular topic, and are not to be ascribed to Mistress Alisoun. A specific citation may sometimes appear under more than one heading.

Abbreviations

LoAR -Laurel Letter of Acceptances and Returns

These are listed by day, month (a three letter abbreviation) and year (the last two digits). All years are 19xx A.D. of the date typed on the letter, no matter when actually mailed, and then the page number of that letter to which citation is made.

CL -The Laurel Cover Letter accompanying an LoAR. Date may be different than that of the LoAR they accompany.

Individuals mentioned in one or more places:

Wilhelm von Schlüssel - former Laurel King of Arms
Master Baldwin - Baldwin of Erebor, former Laurel King of Arms
Crescent PH - Crescent Principal Herald, Master Bruce Draconarius of Mistholme
Badger Herald - Baron Marten Bröker
 
 

TABLE OF HEADINGS


A

Administrative Procedure

Principal Heralds or Submissions Deputies [should] send a copy of each Letter of Intent to the Laurel Office at the same time that it is sent to the members of the College of Arms. Please do not wait to send the letter with the paperwork for the letter of intent as, if the latter is delayed for some reason, the Laurel Office then will be unaware of its existence and cannot schedule it properly for future meetings. (CL 20 Jun 87, p. 1)

Anchor

PRECEDENT: Any period form of anchor, including the curved-arm, barbed ancient or straight-armed form, may be used in Society heraldry. (CL 7 Dec 86, p. 3)

Annulet

The annulet of annulets far too strongly resembles an annulet of chain, which is reserved in Society usage to the Chivalry. (LoAR 27 Sep 86, p. 10) (See also: LoAR 21 Feb 88, p. 9)

The annulet of violets might be mistaken for a wreath of roses and [we] suggest using a smaller number of flowers in a resubmission. (LoAR 21 Feb 88, p. 10)

Anomaly

See also, Rule of Excessive Anomaly

The interlacing of the flaunches by the [charge] is not period style and is, in and of itself, too great an anomaly to allow. (LoAR 28 Dec 86, p. 14)

Antlers

Antlers proper have been identified as "white or light yellow brown" (Wilhelm von Schlussel, 26 December, 1983). (LoAR 27 Sep 86, p. 11)

Anvil

The anvils in the position in which they are placed [palewise addorsed] are extremely difficult to identify. Several of those looking at the emblazon without reading the blazon mistook them for mallet or axe heads. (LoAR 14 Jun 87, p. 5)

The default for a single-horned anvil has the business end, i.e. the "pointier" end, to dexter. (LoAR 30 Jul 89, p. 7)

Appeal

The submittor did not offer new evidence on this point (which means that this was not a valid appeal). (LoAR 29 Apr 90, p. 1)

Arachnid - Scorpion

The visual similarities between the crab and the scorpion create enough visual confusion that the two cannot be considered clear. (LoAR 25 Jan 87, pp. 16-17)

Arch

The "enarching" here is merely one of the standard period methods of depicting a normal chevron and therefore there is insufficient difference from the mundane arms of [Name]. (LoAR 24 May 87, p. 14)

Arms, Branch

The device was judged to be excessively complex [charged primary, secondary in base, and embattled bordure] and poor style to a degree which should not be accepted for group arms which precedent indicates "should set a good example". (LoAR 27 Sep 86, p. 13)

There is a long-standing precedent in Society heraldry which considered charged sails as being equivalent to arms of pretense and therefore forbidden for Society usage: "You may not charge a sail if the resulting sail conflicts with existing arms".... (The passage of the arms of Eisenmarche cited ... in the letter of intent is a special case ...: the arms of the Society, which the Board has specifically stated may be displayed by any group.) (LoAR 28 Dec 86, p. 13)

The Kingdom's arms are the arms of the king and should be worn only by the king himself and his herald, when speaking as the king's voice. After some consideration, we have come to the conclusion that it is inappropriate that the arms of a Kingdom should be used as an augmentation, even if the recipient is entitled to bear a coronet on his or her arms. The badge of a Kingdom or a rendition of the arms without the laurel wreath can, however, be used. (LoAR Aug 88, p. 16)

Artistic License

The form of the label with angled "tags" is period and is a matter of artistic license. (LoAR 29 Mar 87, p. 8)

No additional difference should be added for the difference in depiction between a dolmen of three uprights and the more usual trilithon: even as a primary charge, the viewer will register "dolmen" and assume that the depiction is artistic license. (LoAR 29 Mar 87, p. 11)

The difference between a tyger and its cub may safely be left to artistic license. (LoAR 24 May 87, p. 7)

Rendering ordinaries in a slightly concave manner was a standard artistic variant in mediaeval heraldry so that the proposed device could legitimately be depicted in the mediaeval manner with concave lines without a differing blazon. (LoAR 26 Feb 89, p. 17)

Augmentation

Note: since this augmentation was stated in the letter of intent to have been granted by the Crown to all dukes, it should be registered to the kingdom for that purpose, rather than to the four individuals currently covered by the royal decree. (LoAR 28 Dec 86, p. 1)

[Gules, (with charges), on a canton sable, fimbriated argent, (charges)] This submission points out many of the problems which occur when a "modern" canton of augmentation is added to a period-style device without consideration for the overall design. [Not period style; placement of canton reduces identifiability of low contrast overall charge; fimbriation is thin-line heraldry; unacceptable level of complexity (five layers).] (LoAR 23 Apr 88, p. 16)

The overall augmentation was so complex that no one in the College who was not already familiar with the submittor was able to determine what the underlying arms were, i.e., to identify the submittor without knowing in advance who he was. The essence of the augmentation is that it is something added to a set of arms to indicate honour. In this case, some thought the original arms were this design minus the complex orle, other interpreted it to be the design minus the gorged head, none automatically assumed that the orle and head (which is in base, the less honourable position, which is generally not used for augmentations) were combined to form the augmentation. (LoAR Jun 88, p. 20)

After some consideration, we have come to the conclusion that it is inappropriate that the arms of a Kingdom should be used as an augmentation, even if the recipient is entitled to bear a coronet on his or her arms. The badge of a Kingdom or a rendition of the arms without the laurel wreath can, however, be used. (LoAR Aug 88, p. 16)

The use of the inescutcheon here for the augmentation would seem to be prohibited by the ban on appearance of pretense in AR10d: note that such usual insignia of augmentation as chiefs, cantons, bases are not included here. (LoAR Aug 88, p. 16)

[Three pallets and three barrulets fretted in sinister base, in dexter chief in pale three roses in chevron and a goblet] [With] the primary charge abased to the sinister base ... the remaining charges [are] consequently diminished so in size as to appear like an eccentric canton of augmentation. (LoAR 26 Feb 89, pp. 18-19)

Pending a demonstration of the positive advantages to be gained from changing the rules to allow such an inescutcheon of augmentation at the honour point, we cannot see changing the current clearly expressed policy. (LoAR 21 May 89, p. 16)

The [papal] cross was not used in secular armoury except in those cases where it was granted as an augmentation by the Pope. This being the case, we feel it inappropriate to modify its current status as a reserved charge. (LoAR 18 Jun 89, p. 11)

Automatic Sufficient Difference

[Per chevron argent and sable, an annulet counterchanged] This is in conflict with the mundane arms ... ("Gyronny of eight sable and argent, an annulet counterchanged."... All the examples in the Rules for Submission make it clear that the "automatic sufficient difference" for counterchange is intended to apply only between a plain field charged and a divided field with the same charge counterchanged along the line of division. In this case only the line of division is changed. (LoAR 21 Feb 88, p. 14)

The intention [of Rule AR18a] was to allow automatic difference [between Society and mundane or fictional arms] in cases where period (and modern) heraldic practice would not perceive cadency. Thus a Society device which bore "Azure, a unicorn's head Or, between three swords proper" would not conflict with "Azure, three swords palewise proper" because period heralds would perceive a potential cadet relationship not with the mundane coat cited, but with "Azure, a unicorn's head Or". In the case of a charge added overall, the same situation does not exist, mundane heraldry does in fact indicate cadency by adding a charge overall. (LoAR 19 Mar 88, p. 4)

Australia

On or after August 15, 1989, no submission may be registered which contains any item which is known solely from Australia prior to 1600. (CL 8 Aug 89)

Axe

This was originally returned ... because ... the charges were difficult to recognize because of their fretting. Given the items that Society heraldry has fretted in the past, including "six two-pronged forks", fretting two axes seems reasonable. [Device registered.] (LoAR 26 Apr 87, p. 6)

Axle Bracket

[A U-form axle bracket] This is a simple and elegant charge. The modifier has been added solely to avoid confusion with the O-form of axle bracket or ring which ... did exist in period. (LoAR 26 Feb 89, p 11)

 


B

Badge

[Charge between four roundels within a bordure embattled] Note that, although the number of charges here would seem a trifle busy for a badge, the design forms a unified whole. (LoAR 27 Sep 86, p. 4)

Three unrelated objects strewn on a field do not a badge make. (See Baldwin's Rule of Thumb [below]). (LoAR 27 Sep 86, p. 11)

The chevron here forms one of the standard runes, as given in Koch's Book of Signs, and runic characters are forbidden for use in devices, although they have been used on a case by case basis in badges. (LoAR 27 Sep 86, p. 11)

The red rose of Lancaster, like the white rose of York, deserves extra protection versus Society badges which should differ by more than one major point from this particularly famous royal badge. (LoAR 28 Dec 86, p. 14)

[The] appeal raised the question of potentially differing standards of identifiability for charges on badges because of their theoretically short-range usage in the Society. Leaving aside [the] fact that we are trying to encourage period usage of insignia, not the bookplate approach to heraldry, the fact remains that in the Society badges are - or should be - used to identify the individual, not the other way around. (LoAR 25 Jan 87, p. 27)

[The submittor] should be reminded that, since his badge uses the restricted insignia of the chivalry [an orle of gold chain], it may not be borne or used by anyone not of that rank. (LoAR 28 Feb 87, p. 4)

While abstract symbols may be used in badges, AR10c specifically states that "a badge shall not consist solely of one abstract symbol". Any kanji character must be considered an "abstract symbol" in the sense that the Rules intend. (LoAR 26 Apr 87, p. 9)

This is by definition too complex for a badge since [what] it involves is three unlike charges floating on a divided field (this would be illicit for a device in fact!). (LoAR 26 Jul 87, p. 9)

[Azure, a bezant, pierced sable, between four plates, all within a bordure argent] This is right at the margin of acceptable complexity for a badge (the voiding of the bezant tried to tug it over, the unifying tincture of the outer charges pulled it back). (LoAR Aug 87, p. 4)

The addition of the bordure, which is a standard cadency mark, to a badge which was substantially the same seemed to demand a letter of permission. (LoAR Aug 87, p. 11)

Badges for orders are usually registered as simple armoury without specifying the shape of the field (i.e., without saying "on a roundel"): the method of display is up to the group involved. (LoAR 23 Apr 88, p. 8)

[Per bend sinister embowed counterembowed, in fess a hammer fimbriated and a falcon] This submission ... is clearly too complex for a badge. (LoAR 29 May 88, p. 21)

[A charged arch between two towers, between in pale two different monsters] There was a virtually unanimous opinion among the commentors that this is too complex for a badge. (LoAR 26 Feb 89, p. 22)

Laurel herself shares the doubts of the Western heralds about the advisability of registering crestiform badges. However, as explained in ... the December, 1989, letter, commentary in the College seems more latitudinarian and the new rules do not prohibit them. (LoAR 25 Feb 90, p. 6)

Badge - Fieldless

According to precedents set by Master Baldwin and enshrined in DR2, no difference may be derived from the field. (LoAR 28 Feb 87, p. 20)

This was submitted as a fieldless badges [semy of charges], but the College had distinct qualms about the feasibility of "strewing" a non-existent field. (LoAR 26 Jul 87, p. 8)

This badge, while marginally legal since the [color beasts] maintain the [metal charge], would be vastly improved if both types of charges were of [a single] class of tincture. (LoAR Aug 87, p. 9)

Under the new rules "fieldlessness" is recognised as a state and a point of difference granted for that state so that fieldless armoury and fielded armoury are no longer automatically considered identical. (LoAR 26 Nov 89, p. 48)

[Insect volant fesswise between in fess two branches palewise] The manner in which the [insect] is placed between the two other charges does not really form a coherent self-contained design in the period manner as specified in the rules: the charges are not conjoined nor are they logically lined in a typical group arrangement.... This [is] non-period style, at least as far as the style for fieldless badges has previously been defined in the Society. (LoAR 17 Jun 90, p. 14)

Badge - Group

For a group badge, two anomalies were felt to be excessive. (LoAR 29 Mar 87, p. 3)

This is either an official guild, in which case the badge should be registered to the ... Kingdom, or is unofficial, in which case the name of the Kingdom should not be used. (LoAR Aug 87, p. 17)

Balance

Added to the relatively unbalanced arrangement of the [charges in bend] on either sided of the [per pale] field, the chief itself with its "moving" charge adds an undesirable degree of complexity and lack of balance to the design. (LoAR 26 Feb 89, pp. 16-17)

[Three pallets and three barrulets fretted in sinister base, in dexter chief in pale three roses in chevron and a goblet] The overall arrangement of the charges is extremely unbalanced, with the focus of the primary charge abased to the sinister base and the remaining charges consequently diminished so in size as to appear like an eccentric canton of augmentation. (LoAR 26 Feb 89, pp. 18-19)

The default point in base is centered and contributes to the balance of the design rather than unbalancing it, as does this [dexter] point.... Granted that certain other unbalancing charges (most notably the charged gore) crept into Society heraldry in the past, we see no reason to allow the inherently unbalanced charged dexter (or sinister) point. (LoAR 26 Feb 89, p. 20)

[Three pallets and three barrulets fretted in sinister base] While this resubmission laudably simplifies the device, it does not resolve the problem with the off-center "cross" which produces a distinctly non-period dynamically unbalanced design. (LoAR 22 Oct 89, p. 10)

Barry

The difference between barry of six and barry of eight is negligible. (LoAR 28 Dec 86, p. 18)

By the current rules a barry field may not consist of two colours (AR2a). (LoAR 26 Jul 87, p. 10)

Base

Although the submittor has provided some documentation for the enarched chief and base as separate elements, there is some doubt whether a base of this sort is period and certainly the "cat's eye" effect is distinctly modern. (LoAR Aug 88, p. 17)

Beast

[Coney vs. otter] [This] has ... a minor for the type of charge (the differences in tail and ears between the coney and otter are worth at least a strong minor when a single animal is in question). (LoAR 27 Sep 86, p. 5)

[The issue raised was] whether the addition of the wings is indeed a minor point of difference or should be counted as a major point of difference.... We have concluded that the determination of difference depends not only [on] the proportion of the charge which is modified but also on the "pattern of recognition" involved. In other words, if the modifications create a beast which has a separate identity of its own, either in period or modern heraldry (e.g., a lion as opposed to a sea-lion), it is feasible for the modifications to produce a major point of difference. If the modifications produce a beast which is clearly derivative (e.g., a winged sheep), then the difference created will be minor. (LoAR 14 Jun 87, p. 6)

[Two foxes salient respectant in annulo] The attempt to force the beasts into an annulate arrangement forces them out of any identifiable salient or rampant posture. (LoAR 19 Dec 87, p. 13)

While a number of commentors objected strenuously to the use of a beast unknown to western Europe in period, the wording of the current rules dictates acceptance of the platypus as a charge: "Objects, living things, or design elements not normally used in heraldry, ... but were known to humanity prior to 1601, may be accepted as charges on a case-by-case basis. The guideline for acceptability is whether there is one recognizable form." It would indeed be offensive to deny that the aboriginal natives of Australia are a subset of humanity.... The issue then is reduced to whether there is a single recognizable form for a platypus: since there is, the charge must be accepted. (LoAR Aug 88, p. 3)

The submittor has indeed copiously documented the existence of piebald horses in period. (LoAR Aug 88, p. 17

We do not register baby animals: a bear is a bear is a bear, the precise depiction is left to the artist. (LoAR Aug 88, p. 22)

There was a considerable consensus in the College that the hexapodal [six-legged] weasels were not consonant with period style. (LoAR 27 Aug 89, p. 24)

The standing precedent [is] of not allowing "complete difference of charge" between quadrupeds, no matter how different. Under the requirements for Type Change (X.4.e) in the new rules, the shape of the modified rabbit in any normal depiction is clearly different from that of a rhinoceros or an enfield. Since this significant change in type is applied where the charges are primary charges alone on the field, the Difference of Primary Charges rule (X.2) comes into play and the device is definitely clear. (LoAR 31 Dec 89, p. 27)

The new rules do not require complete difference of charge between the ... primary charges on simple coats, merely significant difference of primary charge, as defined in the section on Significant Armorial Differences. Under that section, it is clearly stated that charges will be considered different in type which were considered clearly separate in period heraldry. Rabbits or hares and lions were so considered. (LoAR 25 Feb 90, p. 14)

It was the sense of the meeting that section X.2 of the rules should apply between mice and lions used a qualifying primary charges. (LoAR 28 May 90, p. 4)

Note that the equine is depicted as a normal horse: we have not withdrawn the ban on non-heraldic "baby animals", but followed period precedent in using a term that will produce a cant. (LoAR 28 May 90, p. 8)

The visual similarity between the fox and the wolf as depicted in the Society was too great to allow difference lacking solid evidence that the two were distinguished as separate charges in period. (LoAR 28 May 90, p. 19)

Beast - Bear

[One commenter] provided some distinct evidence that the panda was not seen by an European until this century and that its furs were not known to Europeans until the last century. However, there is no doubt that Europeans were in China so that it falls in the "domain" of the Society as we were discussing it this summer when the spirit of the discussion seemed to be that any flora and fauna from any continent visited by Europeans in period was "fair game" on the grounds that those items could have been known to explorers.... While we are extremely dubious about the appropriateness of panda bears for Society use, [a commenter] is correct in saying that, if you register a panda for anyone, you must register it for everyone. (LoAR 31 Dec 89, p. 5)

We have acceded to the desire of the [submittor] to maintain the cant by specifying the sex of the bears (although no one but a he-bear would presumably be able to tell). (LoAR 31 Dec 89, p. 19)

Beast - Boar

The beast was blazoned as a "grice" on the submission in a very complex allusive cant. The obscurity created for heraldic artists and researchers does not seem to be justified in view of the extreme reach of the cant. (LoAR 31 Oct 87, p. 3)

The "proper" tincture for a boar's head is brown. (LoAR 21 Feb 88, p. 2)

Beast - Dog

[English sheepdog] This variety of dog appears to have developed after our period and therefore are not permissible under AR7b (see Ammalynne Starchild Haraldsdottir "May I Use a Collie in My Arms?" in the Proceedings of the Meridian Heraldic Symposium, specifically p. 54). (LoAR 29 May 88, p. 28)

Mary, Queen of Scots, had a Skye terrier so that there is at least a presumption that the "Scottie" is period (Ammalynne Starchild Haraldsdottir, "May I Use a Collie in My Arms?", Proceedings of the Meridian Heraldic Symposium, pp. 45-55). (LoAR Aug 88, p. 2)

Beast - Ferret

Since the ferret ... can exist in several colorations, it cannot be proper. (LoAR 25 Jan 87, p. 20)

Beast - Horse

See also, Monster - Sleipnir, Monster - Unicorn

The name Rhiannon may not be coupled with horses or unicorns in view of Rhiannon's function as a horse goddess. (LoAR 27 Sep 86, p. 12)

A name which appears so close to Rhiannon, whether it is derived from it or not, cannot really be used with a unicorn or horse as an element of the related armory. (LoAR 25 Jan 87, p. 22)

A horse certainly is too complex an image to fimbriate under either set of rules. (LoAR 26 Nov 89, p. 35)

Note that the equine is depicted as a normal horse: we have not withdrawn the ban on non-heraldic "baby animals", but followed period precedent in using a term that will produce a cant. (LoAR 28 May 90, p. 8)

Beast - Lion and Cat

The mountain lion [proper] on the emblazon sheet is shown as a dark brown, but all our sources show the beast as a much lighter tincture that could only be blazoned as Or, so the cat would have insufficient contrast with the argent field. (LoAR 29 Mar 87, p. 21)

The difference between a tyger and its cub may safely be left to artistic license. (LoAR 24 May 87, p. 7)

The default for a cat's head is not cabossed. (LoAR Aug 87, p. 2)

The foreparts of the lion are dismembered and the hindparts are not, in a distinctly non-period manner. (LoAR 19 Dec 87, p. 18)

[Lion vs. house cat] The distinction between a lion and a domestic cat under current rules can be no more than a minor point of difference. (LoAR 19 Dec 87, p. 19)

[Tyger sejant vs. domestic cat sejant] Only a minor point of difference can be derived between the two ... charges. (LoAR 19 Mar 88, p. 15)

This would be much better style if the panthers were drawn as separate entities (dropping the entwining of the tails). [Submission registered] (LoAR Aug 88, p. 8)

[Demi-lion vs. natural panther incensed] While it can by no means be assumed that a demi-beast will always be a major point of difference from a whole beast in the same relative position, in this case a comparison of the emblazons shows that the cumulative differences carry this feline well clear of the natural panther.... In addition to the truncation of the lower extremities, there is a significant difference in the portions of the beast that remain: the shape of the head (maned versus maneless), forelegs and tail (shaggy versus smooth) and general treatment (plain versus incensed of flame). (LoAR 30 Apr 89, p. 2)

Beast - Monkey

[A monkey argent vested Or vs. a monkey proper] The overall tincture of the [proper] monkey is as close to Or as makes no difference and the golden clothing covers the monkey to such an extent that it appears to be Or at any distance. The cumulative changes in the detail of the monkey do not make a full "point and a half" required for difference from a Society badge. It should be pointed out to the submittor that there was severe disquiet on the part of some commenters at the use of the "Monkey King" as a heraldic design. (LoAR 25 Jan 87, p. 18)

Beast - Sheep and Lamb

The default lamb is passant. (LoAR 30 Oct 88, p. 5)

The primary charge cannot be blazoned as a sheepskin since that is already defined as a sheep's fleece (as in the insignia of the Golden Fleece). What she clearly wants is a sheepskin rug; what she has drawn is a flattened sheep. (LoAR 21 Jan 90, p. 7)

Belt

There is a precedent going back some eight years banning the use of the "Badge within a strap" since this is a standard form of display for Scottish badges: the chief uses the plain badge and the clansmen use the badge within a strap. Therefore, we have on several occasions returned or pended submissions to allow them to be considered without the strap. In this case, dropping the strap would not be adequate to resolve this problem since conflicts then arise. (LoAR 21 Jan 90, p. 20)

Bend

Cotising a bend in one tincture with another tincture is quite common in period rolls of arms and cannot be considered an anomaly. (Although it is far more common when the field is a colour and the bend and cotises are two metals.) (LoAR 31 Mar 90, p. 4)

Bend-Plus-Bordure

The precedent in this case appears to be the badge of Albert von Drechenveldt which was returned in December, 1985, for appearing to be a "no outhouses" symbol. Since the tincture of the ordinaries in that case was Or, evidently the use of gules is not a consideration. Note also that in the Discouraged practices section (X3) merely specified "the bend-plus-bordure ‘no X’ motif". That this is a design that well could have existed in period (and show cadency from a family [arms]) is rendered irrelevant by the problems raised by the essentially twentieth-century perceptions of the majority of the membership. My feeling, however, is that rendering the bend and bordure in different tinctures would remove the visual suggestion of the "no [charges]" sign and thus resolve the problem. (LoAR 25 Jan 87, p. 29)

Bird

The cumulative [differences] between the birds are worth a minor point at best (in this position [migrant] the primary difference is in the tail configuration). (LoAR 28 Dec 86, p. 16)

The position of the bird was blazoned originally as volant, but the posture of the wings, body and legs is clearly much closer to that which we associate with "striking". (LoAR 29 Mar 87, p. 12)

[A demi-eagle rising from a base rayonny] This is functionally a phoenix visually: the blazon provided ... has been retained to reinforce to the heraldic artist the essentially horizontal orientation of the top of the ... "flames". (LoAR Aug 87, p. 4)

The position of the heads must be specified since guardant is the default position for owls. (LoAR Aug 87, p. 6)

There is a clear point of difference for the differences of posture, but the double-heads are not sufficiently visible against the peacock's tail to add the necessary extra difference. (LoAR Aug 87, p. 14)

However one counts the "points", this [argent, an owl rising guardant, wings elevated and addorsed, maintaining an arrow bendwise sable] is strongly in visual conflict with [argent, a raven rising reguardant, wings disclosed proper, in the dexter claw a sword gules]. (LoAR 27 Sep 87, p. 12)

The bird "perched" on the line of division is not period style so far as can be determined. (LoAR 27 Sep 87, p. 13)

The difference between eagle and hawk is really non-existent. (LoAR 29 May 88, p. 24)

The triple-headed eagle has been banned from use in the Society for nearly nine years because of its close association with the aspirations of the Holy Roman Empire (it appears in at least one period armorial as the imperial arms ONCE Jerusalem has been reconquered). (LoAR 29 May 88, p. 25)

Since the submittor is a member of the Order of the Pelican, the use of the Pelican [is] legitimate. (LoAR Jun 88, p. 20)

[A penguin close] This bird is technically in "trian aspect".... This "Penguin Paperback" view of the bird seems to be the Society default for a penguin close. (LoAR 27 Aug 89, p. 7)

As the peacock is normally as different from the standard cock as a wolf is from a lion (different head shape, distinctive tail, etc.) we have no hesitation in counting a difference between the two. (LoAR 21 Jan 90, p. 3)

There is no heraldic difference between a heron, a crane and a stork. (LoAR 21 Jan 90, p. 16)

Bird - Owl

[Two owls close guardant aspectant] The birds ... have been specified to be "guardant", although this is the usual default for owls close, because the particular arrangement might suggest that they are actually looking at each other. (LoAR Jul 88, p. 13)

Bird - Swan

The posture of the wings and body can be described best, not by "rising but by the swan specific "rousant". (LoAR Aug 88, p. 5)

Blazon

Note: the awkwardness of the blazon reflects the "modern" style of the device. [Device registered anyway] (LoAR 27 Sep 86, p. 3)

What is registered is the emblazon, not the blazon; as the original sheets showed a [monster] couchant, rather than the clearly dormant [one] of the new emblazon sheets, this is technically a change of device rather than a blazon correction. A blazon correction exists when the original blazon does not correctly reflect the registered emblazon or the verbiage does not reflect the intent (e.g., for canting purposes) of the submittor and the new blazon will not be heraldically different from the registered emblazon: since a minor point [of difference] can be derived from a major charge which is dormant rather than couchant, this cannot be merely a blazon correction. (LoAR 25 Jan 87, p. 11)

[A seal displayed erect, tail sufflexed] A charge must be identifiable without the blazon and this is not. (LoAR 25 Jan 87, p. 27)

No blazon appeared on the emblazon forms to verify whether the coloration of the [charge] was intentional or an omission. All paperwork should include the proposed blazon on the forms! (LoAR 28 Feb 87, p. 25)

The line of division was submitted as "erased" and accompanied by documentation from a fourteenth-century Welsh heraldic tract which did indeed show that "erased" was a period form of usage for that partition line that is shown in our standard references as "rayonny". While we agree that, all things being equal, it is better to use a period term than a modern one, in this instance it seems preferable to retain the term "rayonny".... The usage of "erased" as a line of division is so obscure that we were unable to find it in any of the standard texts used by herald artists and local heralds throughout the Society.... This being so, the natural instinct of the heraldic artist will be to consider this as a heraldic neologism, derived from the usage of erased in the depiction of beast's heads, which would result in a line of partition rather different from that which appears on the emblazon. (LoAR 29 Mar 87, p. 11)

The emblazon cannot really be reconstructed from the blazon given: the style is so far from period style that it cannot be expressed in the traditional vocabulary. (LoAR 29 Mar 87, p. 13)

If a blazon is correct in terms of the conventions in force at the time it passed and that blazon is not actually erroneous to such a degree that a herald researching for difference or an artist drawing the emblazon would misunderstand it, I will be loathe to change it....

The touchstone that we use for determining if the blazon is as clear as possible is whether the average heraldic artist would be able to draw a reasonable approximation of the emblazon from the blazon provided. Since clarity is our primary goal, terminology which is not readily available in standard texts must be avoided, even though it may be period and may even be more elegant than a commonly used term....

We should value [elegance and brevity] highly, but in our search for the most elegant turn of phrase we cannot lose sight of the fact that elegance is secondary [to the] primary goal of blazon: to describe the emblazon correctly. Nowhere is it truer than in heraldry that a picture is worth a thousand words: if our thousand words do not reflect the picture accurately, they are useless. (CL 18 May 87, pp. 2-3)

Although documentation was provided for the form of the primary charge's being a legitimate one for [charge], it is by no means the only form of [charge]. Therefore, the charge could not be reconstructed by a competent heraldic artist from the blazon and may not be used for Society heraldry. (LoAR 24 May 87, p. 12)

The blazon is as clumsy as it is because this is not really period style, although it is ... Society heraldry. (LoAR 26 Jul 87, p. 7) [Device registered]

The flora was blazoned as a "scrog" on the letter of intent and this is a term in Scots blazon. However, its obscurity makes it inaccessible for the average heraldic artist and it must be avoided here since a perfectly good "plain language" option [a leafless branch] is available. (LoAR Aug 87, p. 2)

[A demi-eagle rising from a base rayonny] This is functionally a phoenix visually: the blazon provided ... has been retained to reinforce to the heraldic artist the essentially horizontal orientation of the top of the ... "flames". (LoAR Aug 87, p. 4)

The differences between the two serpents [cobra coiled affronty vs. rattlesnake coiled to sinister] in position and type are so weak as to be virtually negligible. The two may be blazoned differently for canting or symbolic purposes, but are not significantly different visually. (LoAR Aug 87, p. 10)

Since a bezant and a roundel Or are equivalent terms, there seems no reason to deny the submittor his preferred blazon, since he feels strongly on the issue. (This does not change the prejudice of Laurel towards the term bezant as being more concise and more elegant in most circumstances.) (LoAR 27 Sep. 87)

[Argent, a saltire vert between a pile and a pile inverted sable] The blazon does not really correctly describe the device as the sable is not really pile-shaped. The nearest blazon probably is "Per saltire sable and argent, a saltire vert, fimbriated argent...." However, this is not permissible since much of the "fimbriation" will fade into the argent portion of the field. [Submission returned] (LoAR 28 Nov 87, p. 11)

[Passant counterpassant] The occasional use of "counterpassant" in Society blazonry as the equivalent of "passant to sinister" demands the longer blazon. (LoAR 19 Dec 87, p. 14)

[(Field), in bend a comet bendwise sinister, head to chief, and an armoured leg, bent at the knee] Note that, if we have erred in the direction of explicitness on the blazon, it is because comets in the Society are more often than not placed in positions other than "bendwise sinister" and human legs have been used in a variety of postures, some not at all usual in mundane heraldry. To guarantee the submittor the device he wishes, we must forego the most elegant blazon. (LoAR 18 Sep 88, p. 11)

If an alternate blazon applies, the device must be tested against that blazon. (LoAR 24 Dec 88, p. 16)

Society terminology follows the later English tradition which distinguishes between the two-legged wyvern and the four-legged dragon, although this distinction seems not to have existed in the earlier period and still does not exist in continental heraldry. (LoAR 15 Jan 89, p. 1

[Shamrocks rather than trefoils] The lady desires these to be blazoned as shamrocks to suit her persona, since there is no real difference between the two from the point of view of "differencing", we see no reason why we should not accommodate the lady. (LoAR 26 Feb 89, p. 3)

While we understand the desire of the submittors to have this blazoned as a "merchild", there is no precedent for registering the young of such monsters and the only thing to distinguish the being as emblazoned from the typical merman is a certain roundness of body which could be accidental. We feel that this should best be left to the artist's discretion. (LoAR 30 Sep 89, p. 10)

The details of the device (i.e., the colour of the beast's toenails and the number of trees in orle) are simply details that we do not today blazon.... By and large, we blazon no more than is necessary to have a clear representation which will adequately depict the device so as to include all differencing items. The toenails and the difference between eight and nine or nine and ten trees are not differencing. Therefore, they are not blazoned. (LoAR 26 Nov 89, pp. 6-7)

[The principal herald] came up with the very late term "verdoy" for a bordure charged with flora. As [one commenter] noted, this does not demand a specific number or arrangement, may be a decadent usage and is equivalent to the usual Society usage for semy. To avoid any confusion for heraldic artists who may not have libraries as extensive as those of [the principal herald and commenting herald], we have used the commoner term. (LoAR 26 Nov 89, p. 26)

The blazon stated the design to be "per fess rayonny enhanced". As many in the College noted, there is no such thing. What we have here is a chief, properly enlarged in the period manner to allow the harp to be clearly visible. (LoAR 21 Jan 90, p. 1)

[A quill pen maintained by a cubit arm fesswise] Note that in the new rules (Changes to Charges on Charges, X.4.j) it is noted that "charges maintained by other charges are generally too insignificant to count towards difference at all." The qualifier was placed in this rule expressly to deal with situations like this where the object held is in fact of equal size to the being/thing maintaining it. (As opposed to the usual situation where a beast maintains a sword/flower/other artifact which is considerably smaller in size and design importance.) In terms of size and design importance the feather is equal to the cubit arm in this design and thus can be treated as having full weight for purposes of difference. In order to emphasize [this] fact..., we have reblazoned the badge to emphasize its primary importance in the design. (LoAR 21 Jan 90, pp. 3-4)

The usage "a sheaf" for "two [charges] in saltire surmounted by a third palewise" is a space-saving Society convention: it does not necessarily mean that the [charges] must be counted for difference as a single unit any more than a sword and a quill in saltire would be considered a single item. (LoAR 17 Jun 90, p. 13)

Books

Although the default posture for closed books in older examples appears to [be] palewise, since so many modern coats (e.g., Cambridge) have closed books fesswise, ... it should be specified that [the books in this submission] are palewise. Indeed, it is also necessary to specify the orientation of the books [spines to sinister]. (LoAR 31 Oct 87, p. 8)

Boot and Shoe

After much consideration (and evaluation of so many pictures of heraldic legs and boots that some accused Laurel of adopting foot fetishism!), we have come to the conclusion that the two cannot be considered adequately different enough to carry this clear.... Certainly, comparisons of the "heraldic boot" and the "heraldic leg" are similar enough in depiction that the two cannot be considered to be fully distinct charges. (LoAR 26 Nov 89, p. 39)

Bordure

There is a precedent in Society usage for the unusual bordure [of flames proper] with the device of [Name] ("[Tincture], a bordure of flames proper") (LoAR 28 Dec 86, p. 2)

The use of a bordure of the same tincture as half the field is extremely poor practice: in effect the bordure only surrounds a portion of the field. (LoAR 25 Jan 87, p. 28)

[Per fess purpure and argent ... all within a bordure counter-compony purpure and argent] This approaches the limits of visual complexity. This would be improved with a simpler bordure which did not leave islands of argent in purpure and vice versa. (LoAR 24 May 87, p. 8) [Device registered]

A bordure should not surmount a chief. (LoAR 24 May 87, p. 15)

The bordure countercompony of vert and argent adds an unacceptable level of complexity to the device since the vert portions of the bordure fade into the azure and the argent fades into the argent of the field, leaving an effect of isolated rectangles of tincture. (LoAR 24 May 87, p. 15)

There seemed to be considerable feeling in the College that the bordure compony which included as one of its tinctures the tincture of the field should not be permitted. Yet the Rules for Submission specifically use a bordure counter-compony as an example where a divided tincture charge which shares on tincture with the field may be used (AR1c). In both cases there are "islands" of the non-field tincture hovering on the field, although the underlying identity of the charge is a trifle clearer in the case of counter-compony. We could find only one mundane example of this phenomenon ..., and this was not dated.... (LoAR 28 Jun 87, pp. 3-4) [A bordure compony sharing a tincture with the field was later ruled not registerable.]

The device was blazoned with a double tressure, but the emblazon showed a bordure gules charged with an orle sable, which would not be licit. (LoAR 28 Jun 87, p. 4)

In both period and modern heraldry a chief, when it is combined with a bordure, is not overlain by the bordure. In some older cases of chief added for cadency, the chief is added above an attenuated field completely surrounded by the bordure. More common, however, in both period and modern heraldry is a chief which simply overlies and truncates the bordure. (LoAR 26 Jul 87, p. 13)

The addition of the bordure, which is a standard cadency mark, to a badge which was substantially the same seemed to demand a letter of permission. (LoAR Aug 87, p. 11)

The consensus was that this was visually too reminiscent of [Name] ..., particularly given the fact that the largest visual difference between the two was the addition of the bordure, which is a standard mark of cadency. (LoAR Aug 87, p. 11)

A bordure compony where one tincture is identical to the field should not be permitted.... The "islands" of tincture ... [are] too large to permit the distinction between the plain bordure compony and a bordure embattled being readily apparent. (LoAR 27 Sep 87, p. 8)

The bordure overlays the chief, which is not period practise. [Returned for this and for conflict] (LoAR 19 Mar 88, p. 15)

[Gyronny of two colors, a bordure "voided counterchanged"] The "voiding" or "fimbriating" of a bordure is not permitted under the rules and the counterchange of two colours upon one another is not permitted (a bordure counterchanged is only permitted when the two tinctures involved are from different classes). (LoAR 29 May 88, p. 18)

[Sable, a bordure gules] The bordure violates the rules on contrast (Society heraldry does not allow the latitude to bordures of cadency that late mundane heraldry does). (LoAR Aug 88, p. 22)

[A barruly field] The bordure which is of the tincture of half the filed makes the gules traits look like barrulets couped floating in the middle of the field: this is why AR1c prohibits such a usage. (LoAR 21 May 89, p. 19)

A bordure compony gules and Or may not be placed on a field Or: under both sets of rules, this would reduce the identifiability of the bordure to an unacceptable degree. (Note that the submittors intuitively grasped this problem: the field and the bordure are depicted in radically different shades of Or.) (LoAR 26 Nov 89, p. 34)

The bordure of flame proper here, particularly as depicted in the emblazon as individual tiny points of red placed on almost separated yellow tongues of flame, is not really a period effect. (LoAR 31 Dec 89, p. 21)

[A bordure parted bordurewise indented] The bordure is a period usage, as noted by several commentors who adduced a number of examples of bordures and other ordinaries parted in this manner. (LoAR 21 Jan 90, p. 21)

There is a standing precedent against the use of bordures of flame. (LoAR 25 Feb 90, p. 18)

The only charge which appears to have been regularly surmounted by a chief was the bordure (and even then the practice was decidedly variable). Such period examples of orles or tressures in conjunction with a chief that we have been able to locate have the full orle placed below the chief, as in the arms of the Worshipful Company of Musicians. (LoAR 17 Jun 90, p. 13)

Brideskold

In and of itself, [a skold] is no more offensive than the scourge ... or fetterlocks, both of which suggested "leather and bondage" to more than one member of the Laurel staff.... Since the brideskold can appear in various tinctures and forms, there can be no "proper" and a specific form must be specified. (LoAR 28 Feb 87, p. 18)

Bridge

[Two towers connected by a bridge vs. a castle] When a submission for the same order was returned in February, 1988, "the strong resemblance of the conjoint charge to a standard depiction of a castle" was noted. (It is essentially two towers conjoined by an embattled wall with arches to base.) There is no clear difference visually between a castle and the bridge on this submission. (LoAR 17 Jun 90, p. 18)

Brittany

Society tradition does not protect the ermine field of Brittany unless it appears in the context of quartering or attached to a name which is strongly redolent of Brittany. (LoAR 28 Feb 87, p. 2)

Registration of a device or badge using the field of Brittany to a [submittor] with the byname "of Brittany" bothered several commentors, despite the fact that this was designated for an alternate persona. (LoAR 29 Mar 87, p. 19) [Submission was returned by Lady Laurel.]


C

Cadency

The addition of the bordure, which is a standard cadency mark, to a badge which was substantially the same seemed to demand a letter of permission. (LoAR Aug 87, p. 11)

The consensus was that this was visually too reminiscent of [Name] ..., particularly given the fact that the largest visual difference between the two was the addition of the bordure, which is a standard mark of cadency. (LoAR Aug 87, p. 11)

While standard cadency marks such as the label may be used as "regular charges" in Society heraldry, i.e., not be used solely in the context of cadency, it is not feasible or appropriate to use such recognized cadency marks to provide the primary difference from mundane or Society armory. (LoAR 24 Jan 88, p. 8)

The intention [of Rule AR18a] was to allow automatic difference [between Society and mundane or fictional arms] in cases where period (and modern) heraldic practice would not perceive cadency. Thus a Society device which bore "Azure, a unicorn's head Or, between three swords proper" would not conflict with "Azure, three swords palewise proper" because period heralds would perceive a potential cadet relationship not with the mundane coat cited, but with "Azure, a unicorn's head Or". In the case of a charge added overall, the same situation does not exist, mundane heraldry does in fact indicate cadency by adding a charge overall. (LoAR 19 Mar 88, p. 4)

Note that this is an excellent example of Society feudal cadency since it combines elements from the devices of his mother ... and his father. (LoAR Aug 88, p. 14)

In period (and many modern) sources, it is clear that charges overall are added to a coat for cadency.... While the charge overall is certainly has significant visual weight, the addition of a charge overall to a pre-existing coat is a recognized form of indicating cadency (see the examples in Gayre, Heraldic Cadency, chapters XIV and XV) so the modifications to the charge overall should not be sufficient in and of themselves to establish difference between the two coats. (LoAR 26 Mar 89, p. 6)

Canting

[A boar] The beast was blazoned as a "grice" on the submission in a very complex allusive cant. The obscurity created for heraldic artists and researchers does not seem to be justified in view of the extreme reach of the cant. (LoAR 31 Oct 87, p. 3)

There is no difference derived from specifying the wings as those of an angel, but this is a case where it is permissible to specify to preserve the cant on the Blue Angels, whose home base is in the Shire. (LoAR 18 Sep 88, p. 5)

The cant on "dragon" or "drake" appears to be equally well-satisfied by either wyvern or dragon, if one is to judge by actual mundane examplars, English and continental. (LoAR 15 Jan 89, p. 1)

Canton

[Sable, a bordure ermine, overall a canton purpure] A canton should not overlie a bordure in this manner and, in any case, the purpure canton on the sable field breaks the well-established rules on contrast. There was a general feeling that the canton did have the appearance of an augmentation and ... the submittor should be strongly encouraged to drop it. [Device returned] (LoAR 29 May 88, p. 17

Castle and Tower

Based both on period practise and modern perception, it is clear that the difference between a single-towered tower and a multi-towered castle should be at most a minor point of difference as we currently count difference. (LoAR 29 May 88, p. 20)

After much consideration and a lot of picture comparisons, we were forced to the conclusion that the visual difference between the triple-towered castle as usually depicted in mundane heraldry and the castle depicted here (with two towers) is not enough to produce a clear minor under the old rules. (LoAR 31 Dec 89, p. 27)

We have traditionally allowed more difference for a tower, as opposed to a castle, as the two are depicted significantly differently in mundane heraldry (see Woodward, Plate XXXII). (LoAR 31 Dec 89, p. 27)

[Two towers connected by a bridge vs. a castle] When a submission for the same order was returned in February, 1988, "the strong resemblance of the conjoint charge to a standard depiction of a castle" was noted. (It is essentially two towers conjoined by an embattled wall with arches to base.) There is no clear difference visually between a castle and the bridge on this submission. (LoAR 17 Jun 90, p. 18)

Chain

The annulet of annulets far too strongly resembles an annulet of chain, which is reserved in Society usage to the Chivalry. (LoAR 27 Sep 86, p. 10)

Chapé/Chaussé

It is not good style to charge the chape or chausse portion of a field. However, since there is ample Society precedence for the practice, I feel compelled to accept it in this case. (LoAR 25 Jan 87, p. 9)

Although a charged chape or chausse is a solecism in mundane heraldry, this has been done often enough in Society heraldry that it would probably be pedantic to quibble over the usage here. (LoAR 24 May 87, p. 4)

A field chausse should not have [a] charge overlie both the field and the "draping". (LoAR Aug 87, p. 11)

Charging a chape or vetu is extremely bad practice in itself. (LoAR 30 Oct 88, p. 14)

The charged chausse here is really something of a solecism. (LoAR 26 Feb 89, p. 16)

The Society traditionally considers "chaussé" as a field division variant. (LoAR 28 May 90, p. 21)

Charges, Dissimilar

[A rapier surmounted by two quill pens in saltire] [One commenter] noted a previous return for combining "dissimilar" charges in a single visual unit. In the case cited, however, it was two types of sword ... rather than two clearly different charges, adding and extra degree of potential visual confusion. (LoAR 30 Apr 89, p. 6)

The use of two types of charge in saltire is so well established in the Society that it is a standard arrangement that does not add to complexity so long as both charges are clearly identifiable.... Note that the sword and axe are distinct charges, both mundanely and in the Society, so that there is not the same type of potential for confusion that there would be if, for instance, a rapier and scimitar or a pike and a battle-axe were in saltire. (LoAR 30 Apr 89, p. 11)

Charges, Maintained

[A quill pen maintained by a cubit arm fesswise] Note that in the new rules (Changes to Charges on Charges, X.4.j) it is noted that "charges maintained by other charges are generally too insignificant to count towards difference at all." The qualifier was placed in this rule expressly to deal with situations like this where the object held is in fact of equal size to the being/thing maintaining it. (As opposed to the usual situation where a beast maintains a sword/flower/other artifact which is considerably smaller in size and design importance.) In terms of size and design importance the feather is equal to the cubit arm in this design and thus can be treated as having full weight for purposes of difference. (LoAR 21 Jan 90, pp. 3-4)

Charges, Polish

The use of variants of ordinaries and other charges in the Polish manner is a reasonable usage (so long as the variant is susceptible of adequate description). (LoAR 30 Apr 89, p. 19)

Charges, Reserved

The badge ... uses the crossed trumpets currently reserved to official heralds in the Society for a non-official organization, even if these are surmounted by a third trumpet.... It combines with the fleur-de-lys which appears in the insignia of the Norrey King of Arms ... with the argent lion supporters of the arms of the College of Arms itself. In this manner, the badge lays claim to symbols not only of the Society College of Arms but also of the English College of Arms as well. This is excessive. (LoAR 30 Sep 89, p. 17)

The standing precedent in the College (stated by Baldwin of Erebor, February, 1985) dictates that the name Corwin may not be used in conjunction with roses of any tincture. (LoAR 26 Nov 89, p. 35)

The orle flory counterflory is visually too close to the reserved tressure of Scotland, a decision reaffirmed as recently as September, 1989.... While [the principal herald] is correct in noting that this is not identical to the Scots tressure, its "visual weight" is essentially the same and there was a fairly strong feeling at the time this charge first was presented that it was visually tantamount to the reserved charge. (LoAR 26 Nov 89, p. 42) (See also: LoAR 30 Sep 89, p. 13)

[A chaplet of roses] While [the submitting herald] noted that the blazon had been selected specifically to distinguish it from the wreath of roses reserved to Queens and Ladies of the Rose, this is a distinction rather than a difference. Not only are chaplets regularly listed under "wreath", but several pieces of royal armoury have the wreath blazoned as a chaplet (most notably that of the Queen of the Middle).... As a territorial princess is not eligible to become a member of the Order of the Rose on the basis of her service to her principality, she may not use the wreath of roses (however blazoned) on her official or personal armoury. (LoAR 29 Apr 90, p. 15)

Charges, Specialized

[Escarbuncles ending in arrowheads] There was a very strong feeling among commentors from coast to coast and points in between that the use of the sign of Chaos from the Moorcock universe in Society armoury was quite inappropriate, not only because of its meaning but also because of its modern associations and design. (LoAR 30 Sep 89, p. 11)

The squirrel pelts are not standard heraldic charges and are not identifiable without the blazon (one member of Laurel staff blazoned this as "three Caspers in fess"!). (LoAR 30 Sep 89, p. 14)

The new rules are somewhat looser on the subject: anything that is demonstrably used in period heraldry may be used in Society heraldry. (LoAR 31 Dec 89, p. 14)

Laurel is aware of several armorial bearings which use a scroll with inscription as a significant part of the design (admittedly several of these are attributed arms and the remainder are mostly ecclesiastical armoury, which is occasionally weird). Thus the scroll may be used in such a design, provided that the wording is neither offensive nor used in such a way that the precise lettering is required for the design. (LoAR 31 Dec 89, p. 14)

Checky

The bordure is chequy since it consists of small panes formed by a grid of lines palewise and fesswise; a bordure compony-countercompony is formed with one set of lines following the edge of the shield and the others dividing the space more or less evenly with the starting points lines in saltire issuing from the upper corners of the shield. (LoAR 25 Jan 87, p. 26)

We have been unable to find any period precedent for such a multiply tinctured chequy [of three tinctures]. If such could be found, we would entertain an appeal; otherwise, we feel that this is an innovation that we would rather not make in Society heraldry. (LoAR 28 Feb 87, p. 17)

Fields checky of two colours have not been permitted for some time. (LoAR 29 Mar 87, p. 16)

Since the "perpendicular" lines of a chequy parallel the edges of a charge (examine the examples of a bend or a saltire chequy in Elvin and other sources), the proper blazon for the division the submittor desires for the bordure would seem to be "chequy", not the "lozengy" of the submitted blazon. (LoAR 26 Apr 87, p. 5)

Chequy of nine panes is, by definition, not evenly divided as to tincture: one tincture must be dominant and in this case it is [color]. This being the case, this must be treated as if it were a [color] dominant field, not an evenly divided (and hence neutral) field. (LoAR 29 Apr 90, p. 16)

Chevron

"It shouldn't be necessary to specify ‘throughout’: that's simply one period way of drawing chevrons. It carries no heraldic difference." [Quoting Crescent PH] (LoAR 26 Apr 87, p. 11)

The "enarching" here is merely one of the standard period methods of depicting a normal chevron and therefore there is insufficient difference from the mundane arms of [Name]. (LoAR 24 May 87, p. 14)

It was ruled some time ago that the "chevron throughout" is merely a period variant of the chevron and no difference can be derived from enhancing the chevron. (LoAR 18 Jun 89, p. 9)

Chief

However this is blazoned, in appearance it includes a fimbriated chief, which is not permitted for Society usage. (LoAR 28 Dec 86, p. 18)

A bordure should not surmount a chief. (LoAR 24 May 87, p. 15)

AR2d indicates that "neutral tinctures may be used with any metal, color, or fur, except either of the component tinctures". While it is stated that the component tinctures may be used in simple cases, the underlying stricture is that a simple case only exists where the identity of the overlying charge is clearly identifiable. This is not the case with the Or chief placed on the field which is largely Or at the point where it intersects with the chief. (LoAR 24 May 87, p. 16)

Please ... draw the chief properly (i.e., not as a narrow addendum to the shield). (LoAR 26 Jul 87, p. 7)

In both period and modern heraldry a chief, when it is combined with a bordure, is not overlain by the bordure. In some older cases of chief added for cadency, the chief is added above an attenuated field completely surrounded by the bordure. More common, however, in both period and modern heraldry is a chief which simply overlies and truncates the bordure. (LoAR 26 Jul 87, p. 13)

[A chief arched] The arching here is virtually identical to that shown on period renditions of a plain chief and adds almost no visual difference. (LoAR 19 Mar 88, p. 12)

The bordure overlays the chief, which is not period practise. [Returned for this and for conflict] (LoAR 19 Mar 88, p. 15)

The exemption from the "Rule of Tincture" extended to a chief in some periods of mundane heraldry is not permissible in Society heraldry. Thus the gules chief on the sable field is "colour on colour". (LoAR 19 Mar 88, p. 19)

Although the submittor has provided some documentation for the enarched chief and base as separate elements, there is some doubt whether a base of this sort is period and certainly the "cat's eye" effect is distinctly modern. (LoAR Aug 88, p. 17)

A chief cannot be fimbriated. (LoAR Aug 88, p. 23)

The addition of identically charged chiefs to both devices gives the appearance not of direct cadency but common membership in an order, household or fraternal organization (the mundane analogue for this would be the use of a chief bearing the arms or badge of a martial order). (LoAR 26 Feb 89, p. 14

Orles do not overlie a chief. (LoAR 30 Jul 89, p. 2)

[On a chief, a charge bendwise sinister] There was considerable feeling in the College that the unusual position of the charge on the chief was not period style. After much consideration, we have decided that it is eccentric and not advisable, but not grounds in and of itself for the return of the device. LoAR 27 Aug 89, p. 12)

Although the letter blazoned the "decoration" of the chief as "five saltires", the visual effect is one of the standard depictions of a chief fretty and is more simply blazoned in this manner. (LoAR 22 Oct 89, p. 7)

The blazon stated the design to be "per fess rayonny enhanced". As many in the College noted, there is no such thing. What we have here is a chief, properly enlarged in the period manner to allow the harp to be clearly visible. (LoAR 21 Jan 90, p. 1)

There is one clear visual difference for the addition of the chief and another for the addition of the tertiaries. (LoAR 21 Jan 90, p. 5.)

The addition of the secondary [chief] and the addition of the tertiary [charges on the chief] are separate actions and in mundane heraldry would reflect different levels of cadency. (LoAR 25 Feb 90, p. 6)

[Per pale and barry wavy argent and sable, on a chief triangular sable ...] As [the design's] identifiability is undiminished by its being depicted in one of the field tinctures, there is no problem with this device under either set of rules. (LoAR 29 Apr 90, p. 3)

The only charge which appears to have been regularly surmounted by a chief was the bordure (and even then the practice was decidedly variable). Such period examples of orles or tressures in conjunction with a chief that we have been able to locate have the full orle placed below the chief, as in the arms of the Worshipful Company of Musicians. (LoAR 17 Jun 90, p. 13)

Cinquefoil

While we appreciate the comments of [commenters] on the interchangeability of the cinquefoil and the heraldic rose in the early period..., it is a fact that the Society has for lang and lang distinguished between them, as a glance at the Armorial or even the Pictorial Dictionary ... will reveal. (Now fraises and cinquefoils, on the other hand.) (LoAR 31 Dec 89, p. 10)

Comet

There is not a full point of difference between [a] shooting star and an estoile. (LoAR 28 Feb 87, p. 17)

[A comet bendwise sinister] Comets in the Society are more often than not placed in positions other than "bendwise sinister".... To guarantee the submittor the device he wishes, we must forego the most elegant blazon. (LoAR 18 Sep 88, p. 11)

Compass Needle

This charge was not identifiable. While a compass point is mentioned in Parker (p. 388), no indication is given that this was used as a charge in period. (LoAR 28 Feb 87, p. 24)

Compass Star

The primary charge was shown in the blazon on the letter of intent as an estoile, on the emblazon on the letter of intent as a compass star, and on the emblazon sheet provided by the submittor as [a billet surmounted by a lozenge fesswise surmounted by a lozenge palewise]. What the submittor has provided is four layers, even though the surmounting charges are of the same tincture.... It is not at all clear whether the submittor would prefer a compass star, an estoile (which would have six wavy rays) or neither of these. (LoAR 29 Mar 87, p. 15)

By tradition the Society has considered a compass star to differ by at least a strong minor from a mullet, this is well clear. (LoAR 24 May 87, p. 3)

A compass star is too complex a charge to fimbriate. (LoAR 26 Jul 87, p. 9)

Complete Difference of Charge

Complete difference of charge cannot exist between a woodchuck and a squirrel: the visual similarities are too great. (LoAR 25 Jan 87, p. 17)

There is not complete difference of charge [between a hexagon and a roundel of the same color]. (LoAR 29 Mar 87, p. 20)

Where two devices consist solely of any number of identical charges in a standard arrangement [including semy] upon a plain field or of such charges used in conjunction with an uncharged bordure or chief, sufficient difference shall automatically be considered to exist if the primary charges are completely different with no possibility of visual confusion between the two types of charge. (CL 25 Nov 87, p. 3)

[Experience] seems to indicate that modern sensibilities, as much as period perceptions, would consider the fleur-de-lys completely different from any variant of human or beast head. (LoAR 31 Oct 87, p. 7)

[The submitting herald] errs in considering that there is complete difference of charge between a tree eradicated vert and a tree eradicated blasted vert: at best there is a minor point of difference. (Nor is there complete difference of charge between a lion and a lion defamed: in fact, Society precedent would hold that the difference between the two types of lion would be negligible.) (LoAR 21 Feb 88, p. 6)

"Complete difference of charge" should [not] be accorded to two different types of mushroom proper: unless the tinctures are completely different only a weak minor point could be derived. (LoAR 23 Apr 88, p. 18)

[Per saltire argent and gules, four roses counterchanged vs. Per saltire Or and gules, four escallops, points to center, counterchanged] Complete difference of charge applies here. [Returned for other conflict] (LoAR Jul 88, p. 20)

[The principal herald] requested that the "Complete Difference of Charge" leniency be granted for charges which involved orles as well as those which involved bordures or chiefs. After much consideration, we have decided that this is not an advisable path to pursue.... The rationale behind this in part involved cadency: the bordure and the chief were preeminently charges added to indicate cadency in period and, as such, would be automatically "added" to a base device to indicate the "parent" armoury. This is not the case with orles which are almost always a primary design, rather than a cadency mark, and therefore are less likely to be "transparent" to an onlooker. Moreover, ... under normal circumstances, the very nature of the orle diminishes the primary charge in size, seriously reducing its identifiability. (LoAR 18 Sep 88, p. 19)

[A winged natural panther vs. a falcon] We did not feel complete difference of charge could reasonably apply here since you have two winged creatures in essentially the same posture (allowing for the differences in the bodies of the two beasts). (LoAR 30 Oct 88, p. 16)

The Complete Difference of Charge rule cannot apply between variants of crosses. (LoAR 21 May 89, p. 20)

After much soul-searching and a comparison of the emblazons, we decided that the shapes are too similar for complete difference of charge to exist between a goblet and an hourglass ... under both the old rules and the new. The visual assonance is very clear: the only difference between the two devices with the hourglass drawn in one of its standard Society depictions (i.e., without the posts) is the balance and "fatness" of the lower portion of the goblet. (LoAR 26 Nov 89, p. 36)

Under the new rules, this is definitely clear since complete difference of charge may apply to coats where a charged chief is the only accompaniment to the primary charges (Difference of Primary Charges, X.2). (LoAR 31 Dec 89, p. 3)

Under both sets of rules ... "complete difference of charge" cannot function where a semy is present. (LoAR 31 Dec 89, p. 23)

Note that complete difference of primary charge cannot apply ... because the secondaries are flaunches. (LoAR 21 Jan 90, p. 7)

The new rules do not require complete difference of charge between the ... primary charges on simple coats, merely significant difference of primary charge, as defined in the section on Significant Armorial Differences. Under that section, it is clearly stated that charges will be considered different in type which were considered clearly separate in period heraldry. Rabbits or hares and lions were so considered. (LoAR 25 Feb 90, p. 14)

It is certainly a possibility to consider that the phrase "alone on the field" should be taken literally in the new rules and the significant difference of charge license apply even where the primary charges are themselves charged.... After much wrestling with this issue, we have come to the conclusion that the letter of the law in this case is also the spirit of the law and thus section X.2 [Difference of Primary Charges rule] of the new rules can apply to charged primaries. However, it must be stressed that the tertiary charges cannot significantly diminish the identifiability of the primaries in each case (by definition, both must be charged or else the two coats would be clear under the new rules). Also, it is presumed that the "visual conflict" rule may apply in cases such as that cited above where charges of the same type and tincture are modified with no other modifications. (LoAR 29 Apr 90, p. 5)

Section X.2 of the new rules, which allow for automatic difference when there is a change of primary charge on a simple coat, is interpreted fairly strictly to allow such difference of primary charge to apply when the primary charge(s) are themselves charged, provided the other criteria outlined in that section of the rules are met.

In applying this precedent, please remember that the "visual test" still remains active. If the combination of position, tincture, arrangement, etc. of the identical items in the design creates an overwhelming visual resemblance to a piece of protected armoury, "visual conflict" may still be called. (CL 15 Jun 90, p. 3)

It was the sense of the meeting that section X.2 of the rules should apply between mice and lions used a qualifying primary charges. (LoAR 28 May 90, p. 4)

Complexity

[Charge between four roundels within a bordure embattled] Note that, although the number of charges here would seem a trifle busy for a badge, the design forms a unified whole. (LoAR 27 Sep 86, p. 4)

It was the general consensus that [the primary charge's low contrast with half the field], taken with the non-standard and rather busy position of the [quadruped secondaries], pushed this device over the edge of unacceptable complexity. (LoAR 27 Sep 86, p. 12)

The device was judged to be excessively complex [charged primary, secondary in base, and embattled bordure] and poor style to a degree which should not be accepted for group arms which precedent indicates "should set a good example". (LoAR 27 Sep 86, p. 13)

In referring to an "off-center" gyronny in [a] return ... in February, 1982, Master Wilhelm noted "this sort of division is not heraldic". Whilst this referred to a gyronny of two colours, the general principle holds true. It was the consensus of the meeting that the unequal division of the tinctures on the [primary charge] taken together with the low contrast between the [metal portions of the primary charge] and the [metal] of the field and the [tertiary charge] creates too great a complexity for a badge. (LoAR 26 Oct 86, pp. 9-10)

This is overly complex for period style, involving as it does five tinctures and four different types of charge. If would add a considerable amount of unity to the design if the [major charges] were both of the same tincture. (LoAR 28 Dec 86, p. 16) (See also: LoAR 28 Nov 87, p. 11; LoAR 27 Aug 89, p. 27)

Unfortunately, this is four layers and therefore technically too complex for a device, let alone a badge. (LoAR 25 Jan 87, p. 15) (See also: LoAR 24 Jan 88, p. 6)

[Tierced per fess of three tinctures, two identical charges and a third charge, all counterchanged] This is not period style. Even were there only two tinctures involved, the visual complexity (these appear to be two different types of charge divided per fess and overlying a fess) would make the effect confusing. This would be far better if one of the charges were placed on the fess surrounded by three of the other charge. (LoAR 25 Jan 87, p. 26)

Three different charges on a field party per pall have been ruled previously to be too complex by definition to be registered in the Society (AR 6c). (LoAR 28 Feb 87, p. 19)

The primary charge [a sword proper, blade enflamed gules, entwined by a rose vine argent slipped and seeded Or] is just too complex and displays too poor contrast to be acceptable. The hilt Or ... fades into the argent field and the vine of roses is such a minor detail combined with the visual distraction of the flames gules, that it is difficult to determine precisely what it is. (LoAR 26 Apr 87, p. 13)

[Semy field, a charge and a chief triangular semy; five tinctures] This is almost overly complex, but is legal. (LoAR 24 May 87, p. 3)

[Per fess purpure and argent ... all within a bordure counter-compony purpure and argent] This approaches the limits of visual complexity. This would be improved with a simpler bordure which did not leave islands of argent in purpure and vice versa. (LoAR 24 May 87, p. 8)

The label charged with two different charges in two tinctures is just too complex. (LoAR 24 May 87, p. 14)

The bordure countercompony of vert and argent adds an unacceptable level of complexity to the device since the vert portions of the bordure fade into the azure and the argent fades into the argent of the field, leaving an effect of isolated rectangles of tincture. (LoAR 24 May 87, p. 15)

The design, particularly the exiguous laurel wreath about the thin and complexly nowed serpent was too complex visually for group arms. (LoAR 28 Jun 87, p. 3)

This is by definition too complex for a badge since [what] it involves is three unlike charges floating on a divided field (this would be illicit for a device in fact!). (LoAR 26 Jul 87, p. 9)

[Azure, a bezant, pierced sable, between four plates, all within a bordure argent] This is right at the margin of acceptable complexity for a badge (the voiding of the bezant tried to tug it over, the unifying tincture of the outer charges pulled it back). (LoAR Aug 87, p. 4) [The badge was registered.]

[On a fess per fess sable and argent, a bar counter-compony argent and sable] There was ... a consensus that the central charge, whether it be blazoned as a charged fess or a parted fess fimbriated, was too complex to readily identify "on the field". (LoAR Aug 87, p. 10)

The collocation of charges in base [a bezant, pierced sable, between four plates within an annulet argent] is too complex to be identifiable as a component of this device. (LoAR Aug 87, p. 12)

It did not seem that the fimbriation of the crescent was enough per se to cause the submission to be returned. However, it was felt that the fimbriation in an already relatively complex design ... added an unacceptable complexity to the design. (LoAR 27 Sep 87, p. 8)

[Per pale gules and azure, a lion and a dragon combattant argent, maintaining in their forepaws a sword and a great axe crossed in saltire, in base a massacre Or] This very nearly falls over the great cliff of overcomplexity: were the charges not confined to two tinctures, this would be too complex. (LoAR 28 Nov 87, p. 1)

[A chevron and on a pale counterchanged a rapier inverted counterchanged] It [is] just too complex for Society heraldry, not only containing four layers (field + chevron + overlying pale + rapier) but reducing the rapier to a nearly unidentifiable state through the counterchanging. (LoAR 24 Jan 88, p. 7)

Even for an augmentation this adds an unacceptable level of complexity since the charged canton is placed on top of a charge overall, making the canton itself the fourth and fifth layer of the design. (LoAR 23 Apr 88, p. 16)

[A sword inverted palewise between two others in pile, all proper and issuant from a demi-trefoil vert itself issuant from a torse wreathed vert and Or, the trefoil charged with a rose Or] As the convoluted blazon suggests, this is too complex for a badge: six different charges of four types. (LoAR 23 Apr 88, p. 20)

[Per bend sinister embowed counterembowed, in fess a hammer fimbriated and a falcon striking] This submission ... is clearly too complex for a badge (in itself, the hammer is too complex a charge to fimbriate). (LoAR 29 May 88, p. 21)

[Quarterly, a (charge) bendwise surmounted by a compass star, between two flowers, within a bordure embattled counterchanged] This pushes the very outer limits of complexity [in a device]. It would be vastly improved by the removal of either or both of the central charges. (LoAR Jul 88, p. 2)

[Gules, a fess argent, overall seven mascles, four and three, counterchanged] Not only does this conflict with the arms of Austria ("Gules, a fess argent."), but it is visually confusing to an unacceptable degree. (LoAR Jul 88, p. 18)

[In pale a candle enflamed upon a flat candlestick, the latter between two natural rosebuds, slipped and leaved in chevron inverted, all within a mullet of eight points elongated to base and voided] The voiding of an inherently complex charge like the mullet of eight points is exacerbated by the elongation of the mullet to base and can be considered "thin line heraldry". Not one but three charges are framed within this voided mullet and they are so arranged as to minimize their identifiability. [Device returned] (LoAR Jul 88, p. 18)

The bordure, semy of two separate charges in alternation [is] too complex for use in the Society While such a usage does indeed occasionally occur in the Iberian peninsula..., even there it is usually done in conjunction with a bordure compony so that the alternation of the charges is made more obvious by the differentiation of the bordure tinctures (the most famous of these examples is the bordure adopted by several Spanish families which alternates the lion of Leon and the tower of Castile). (LoAR Aug 88, p. 19)

[Gyronny Or and chequy azure and argent, a spider tergiant palewise sable and in chief a faceted gem fesswise between two others in chevron gules] Most of the commenters felt that this pushed the limits of acceptable style to near the breaking point, but ultimately we decided that this fell short of unacceptability. In fact, apart from the peculiar positioning of the gems, this is a rather simple device (or would be if the field were a bit quieter). (LoAR 18 Sep 88, p. 10)

[On a chevron an increscent and a decrescent, overall a monster rampant, in chief a fleur-de-lis] This submission comes perilously close to the limit on complexity and could do with some simplification. [Device registered] (LoAR 27 Nov 88, p. 10)

[Quarterly azure and azure, ermined, on a cross floretty engrailed between in bend two (beasts) heads jessant-de-lis, a cross floretty] This device pushes close to the limits of acceptability from the point of view of complexity and presumption, but falls just this side of disaster. (LoAR 26 Feb 89, p. 9)

Added to the relatively unbalanced arrangement of the [charges in bend] on either sided of the [per pale] field, the chief itself with its "moving" charge adds an undesirable degree of complexity and lack of balance to the design. (LoAR 26 Feb 89, pp. 16-17)

The complexity of the voided and interlaced charges diminishes the visual impact of the concavity [of the lines] to negligible status. (LoAR 26 Feb 89, p. 17)

[A charged arch between two towers, between in pale two different monsters] There was a virtually unanimous opinion among the commentors that this is too complex for a badge. (LoAR 26 Feb 89, p. 22)

[Per chevron, on a chevron between two birds and a winged beast, three charges] This device pushes at the very limits of complexity, only being saved by the use of colour to tie the secondary and tertiary charges together. (LoAR 26 Mar 89, p. 3)

The style we strive for is that of an earlier period when heraldry was actually used for identification, not book plates and carriage embellishments. This is the underlying principle behind the ban on complexity and the requirements for contrast. (LoAR 30 Apr 89, p. 10)

The use of two types of charge in saltire is so well established in the Society that it is a standard arrangement that does not add to complexity so long as both charges are clearly identifiable.... Note that the sword and axe are distinct charges, both mundanely and in the Society, so that there is not the same type of potential for confusion that there would be if, for instance, a rapier and scimitar or a pike and a battle-axe were in saltire. (LoAR 30 Apr 89, p. 11)

The use of the [two] hands in different orientations together with a relatively unidentifiable charge [falcon's hood affronty] in base [all around a charged chevron] pushes this device towards unacceptable complexity despite its simplicity of [only using two] tincture[s]. [Device returned] (LoAR 30 Apr 89, p. 15)

While the two grape bunches do lie on the [primary charge] in the emblazon, the identifying leaf portions of the [vert] vine lie almost entirely on the [color] field. Additionally, the vine adds an extra level of complexity of tincture and design that is ... "awfully busy". (LoAR 30 Apr 89, p. 17)

[Per fess potenty (color) and (fur), a (charge) between two (of another charge), in base a (beast) couchant reguardant, environed of a rose vine] This device is excessively complex. There is a low contrast complexly divided field, four different types of charge in a non-standard arrangement and, to push the whole thing over the edge, the detail of the rose vine in which the [beast] is entrapped, which is nearly unidentifiable, even though most of it does lie on the [beast] and so has reasonable contrast. (LoAR 30 Apr 89, p. 18)

[A stag salient through a heart voided] Were [the voiding of the heart] the only anomaly, the issue of complexity and style would be much dicier. However, joined to the voided heart is the design which depends on the beast "doing a circus stunt" ..., i.e., jumping through the heart. This posture inevitably obscures some of the identifying features of both the stag and the heart, since the head and antlers of the stag overlie the indentation of the heart to chief. Thus the shape of the upper portion of the heart is obscured and, since the [metal] antlers lie largely along the [metal] curve of the heart, so are the identifying antlers. (LoAR 30 Apr 89, p. 18)

There is no doubt that the addition of this augmentation raises the complexity level of an already complex device several degrees.... Adding the [augmentation] inescutcheon adds a further two layers as well as three tinctures and four types of charge, all depicted at extremely small scale.... This is just too much complexity. (LoAR 21 May 89, p. 16)

[In pale two charges in saltire and another charge, all between two pallets] It was our feeling that this sailed just this side of overcomplexity. [Device registered] (LoAR 18 Jun 89, p. 7)

[Two bendlets disjointed fimbriated] The addition of the fimbriation here adds an unacceptable degree of confusion to the visual effect which seriously reduces the overall identifiability of the unusual bend. (LoAR 18 Jun 89, p. 10)

The complex central charge, with its unusual variant of a standard charge ..., the addition of the [birds] and the mount and the gores add an unacceptable degree of complexity in type and tincture of charge. (LoAr 18 Jun 89, p. 13)

While we grant that the heart is an essentially simple charge, the fimbriation here adds a degree of complexity that is inappropriate for a badge, diminishing as it does the immediacy of the identifiability of the gules heart. (LoAR 27 Aug 89, p. 21)

[Per fess, in fess three human skeletons affronty, kneeling on their dexter knees, each maintaining in its dexter arm a book and in the sinister hand a staff palewise, and a beast, maintaining a sword bendwise] This [is] just too busy, the more so in view of the difficult-to-process charges used here. (LoAR 27 Aug 89, p. 25)

In this case, where the charged ordinary significantly affects the identifiability of the primary charge and four tinctures combined with three different types of charge increase the visual "traffic" in the design, we ... concluded that this was just too complex. (LoAR 27 Aug 89, p. 27)

[Per saltire of two colors, on a saltire bretessed between two charges in pale and a decrescent and an increscent in fess, a musical instrument] This pushes at the outer limits of complexity. [Device registered] (LoAR 30 Sep 89, p. 9)

[The submission] uses six charges of three types in a fieldless arrangement which is moderately complex for a fieldless badge. [Returned for this and other problems] (LoAR 30 Sep 89, p. 17)

[A cornucopia in annulo, atop the fruit a bird, wings displayed] While this badge pushes at the limits of acceptable complexity, the basic design is within the spirit of such period badges as the bear and ragged staff. (LoAR 26 Nov 89, p. 25)

Note that this pushes the outside limits of complexity as defined by the "rule of thumb" used in the new rules. There are four types of charges and either four tinctures (if one counts "proper" as a single tincture) or five (if one breaks the [charge] into is component black and white). (LoAR 26 Nov 89, p. 25)

The device is pushed over the edge of complexity under both rules by use of the four tinctures and four different charges with one type (the [ordinary]) diminished in identifiability because it is defined entirely by its fimbriation and two others because they are almost identical in their shapes (... which are in fact drawn almost identically). (LoAR 26 Nov 89, pp. 33-34)

The four [charges] in two tinctures, three heads and whole [beast], [are] just too complex for period style even without the anomaly of the heads holding the [charges] in their mouths.... The four tinctures with three types of charge (four, if you categorize secondary and tertiary charges of the same type as visually different in weight) are just too much. (LoAR 26 Nov 89, p. 40)

[Per pale, two monsters and a garb, on a chief three charges; four tinctures total] Note that the device pushes at the very borders of complexity under both old and new rules. (LoAR 31 Dec 89, p. 16)

[Two beasts combattant maintaining between them two charges, in base a charge within a charge; four tinctures] This borders on the edge of overcomplexity under either set of rules. (LoAR 31 Dec 89, p. 19)

This exceeds [the] limits [of complexity] under both sets of rules: five tinctures and at least four sets of charges, if you blazon the chief triangular as such to avoid the ambiguities of the two types of mullets in a group with the [primary charges]. Even without the two different types and tinctures of mullets in the same group in chief this would be dicey. (LoAR 31 Dec 89, p. 23)

The combinations of tinctures and charges push complexity levels under both the old rules and new. (There are five tinctures and three types of charges, even without counting the cap [on the primary] as a separate charge.) (LoAR 31 Dec 89, p. 25)

[On a pale surmounted by a bend embattled on the upper edge counterchanged, a beast's head and an anvil] The overall design [is] just too complex and unbalanced for period style. The difficulties which were encountered ... in creating a blazon which would guarantee that the "staircase" would never overlie the charges on the pale was indicative of the problem. The counterchanging and the diminished size of the bend required by the [beast's] head above it on the pale decreased the immediate recognizability of the bend. Additionally, while the number of layers involved here can be reduced to three by reblazoning, the overall effects is visually complex and overly confusing, creating an effect of motion as the eye follows the "staircase" from top to bottom rather than processing the charges in a normal static manner. (LoAR 21 Jan 90, pp. 20-21)

[Per pale, in saltire a sword and a trumpet between four quill pens tergiant, nibs to center] This [is] overly complex, particularly for a badge: three types of charges, four tinctures and quill pens in a position (tergiant!) which almost guarantees unrecognizability. (LoAR 21 Jan 90, p. 21)

There are just too many anomalies and too much business here. The lizard atop the rock is actually a naturalistic representation of a lizard on an obsidian-type rock and a good part of the vert lizard's typical leg and foot structures fade into the sable stone. While the general desert effect is quite clear, when this is placed on the overcrowded [semy of] suns, the effect is overly complex. When one also considers that the sable hilts ... cause the swords to appear like hiltless blades the visual confusion just falls over the edge. (LoAR 25 Feb 90, p. 20)

This is just too busy: there are three types of charges (with two in a single group) and six tinctures (with three in a single group). (LoAR 31 Mar 90, p. 14)

[In fess two charges and on a point pointed Or, a different charge, on a chief a beast couchant] This device treads the very edge of complexity: only the fact that everything but the tertiary on the chief were in two tinctures, unifying the device, persuaded us that it did not fall over that edge. (LoAR 29 Apr 90, p. 13)

[Per pall inverted, two birds respectant and a monster; four tinctures] This totters on the edge of overcomplexity, but falls just inside the line. (LoAR 28 May 90, p. 11)

This is just too complex to meet our requirements of style.... In the first place, two different types of charge semy are placed on either side of an ordinary in identical tinctures (and not dissimilar shapes which creates a visual confusion). In the second place, the correct identification of the tertiary depends on a precise depiction and arrangement of the charges that is not period. In the third place, there is excessive complexity with four types of charges and four tinctures involved in this device. (LoAR 28 May 90, p. 14)


C (Continued)

Compony/Counter-compony

A bordure compony-countercompony is formed with one set of lines following the edge of the shield and the others dividing the space more or less evenly with the starting points lines in saltire issuing from the upper corners of the shield. (LoAR 25 Jan 87, p. 26)

A bordure compony where one tincture is identical to the field should not be permitted.... The "islands" of tincture ... [are] too large to permit the distinction between the plain bordure compony and a bordure embattled being readily apparent. (LoAR 27 Sep 87, p. 8) (See also: LoAR 28 Jun 87, pp. 3-4; LoAR 30 Apr 89, p. 20)

Conflict

When an individual views two devices, apart or together, they go through several phases in processing the information.... The observer usually registers first the colour of the field, usually in terms of metal versus colour, then if it is divided and of what tinctures and only then by what type of line of partition, if one is present. Then the tincture of the charge closest to the center of the device is processed (... there is quite a bit of evidence that [our ancestors] looks at the type of central charge before its colour and a large minority of the populace do that as well). Again, the tincture recognition is usually a two stage thing: first the category and then the specific tincture. Then the overall type of central charge is determined, followed by its number and posture.... Only then will perception pass to the "peripheral" secondary charges, moving from center out and from top to bottom and repeating the tincture, type, number/posture process until all charges which lie directly on the field have been "digested". Then and only then normally does the eye return to the center of the device to consider tertiary charges....

In practice, this means that two devices which are strongly similar in the center will be perceived as being more alike than two devices which differ strongly in the center but are identical on the periphery.... Practically speaking, changes to tertiaries on an ordinary in the center of a device will contribute considerably greater visual difference than tertiaries on a charge which is itself on the periphery.

It must be conceded that these degrees of difference cannot be totally quantified and it is extremely dubious whether they should be.... The "grey areas" of visual conflict often seem to occur more frequently in the more complex the device in its processing ...: so much is required in the digestion and/or so unusual are the patterns that each change has less cumulative effect. It is unavoidable that there will be "judgement calls" in such cases. When this is the case, the final determinant will be the actual emblazons compared by Laurel and anyone else at the meeting. (CL 18 May 87, pp. 4-5)

The addition of the bordure, which is a standard cadency mark, to a badge which was substantially the same seemed to demand a letter of permission. (LoAR Aug 87, p. 11) (See also: LoAR Aug 87, p. 11)

Since each rose/laurel wreath collocation is essentially a single charge visually, this device is constructed on the pattern of a single primary charge and four identical secondaries. This being so, this is in conflict. (LoAR Aug 87, p. 14)

[Cauldron suspended from tripod vs. cauldron and a base rayonny] If we consider the pot and the tripod to be a single charge, the two [pieces of armory] would be in conflict since the addition of the base would contribute only one difference. In some designs, the trivet could be diminished in importance to a degree that it would not contribute difference. However, in this particular design the tripod has nearly equal weight with the pot and, were it not for the back leg of the tripod, the pot could as well be blazoned "between the legs of and suspended from a chevronel couped and inverted". This being the case, we feel that the new rules would allow the tripod to be treated as a secondary charge, with one difference for the difference in type and another for the difference in color. (LoAR 26 Nov 89, p. 13)

Under both old and new rules there remains a conflict with the arms of [Name]...: there is only the addition of the secondaries which produces a major point or a single clear visual difference, depending on the set of rules you are using. This is not sufficient. (LoAR 31 Dec 89, p. 20)

[Sable, on a triangle Or a pair of batwings displayed sable, all within a bordure] Valid concerns were ... expressed in the College about the use of the conjoint batwings on a gold background (albeit the classic depiction of the "quasi-arms of pretense" of Batman are on an oval fesswise and this is the form recently and aggressively protected). [Returned for conflict (not Batman) and stylistic problems] (LoAR 31 Dec 89, p. 21)

[Three piles issuant from sinister] This is also a direct visual conflict with [Name]...: the period depiction of the per pale indented field showed large indentations reaching nearly to the edges of the shield such as appear here. (LoAR 21 Jan 90, p. 17)

[Argent, two gussets gules vs. Gules, a pall argent] Regrettably, this is in conflict.... The removal of the inverted triangular portion of the field from the top of the device does not create enough visual difference to carry the two devices truly clear. (LoAR 17 Jun 90, p. 17)

Conflict - Mundane

See also, Brittany

As the person to whom these arms belong is peculiarly prominent, the weight for protection falls with the mundane arms. (LoAR 28 Dec 86, p. 13)

[The arms of Tirol] were felt to be famous enough from their period and modern use to deserve extra protection. (LoAR 28 Jun 87, p. 3)

Conflict - S.C.A.

This is very close to the device of [Name] ("[Blazon]"). There is a clear major point for the removal of the [secondary charges], but it is arguable whether the visual differences between the two sets of long [color] objects in saltire should be considered a major point of difference. In view of the extreme simplicity of the devices in both cases, we were inclined to give the submittor the benefit of the doubt but would seriously encourage him not to draw the [primary charges] in too elongated a fashion lest there be confusion with [Name]. (LoAR 25 Jan 87, p. 15)

[A monkey argent vested Or vs. a monkey proper] The overall tincture of the monkey [proper] is as close to Or as makes no difference and the golden clothing covers the monkey to such an extent that it appears to be Or at any distance. The cumulative changes in the detail of the monkey do not make a full "point and a half" required for difference from a Society badge. (LoAR 25 Jan 87, p. 18)

[A delf and a lozenge, voided and interlaced] Given the visual similarity of the primary charge to a number of depictions of a snowflake in Society heraldry and mundane art, this appears to [conflict]. (LoAR Aug 87, p. 13)

Constellation

[The submittor] must draw the upper portion of the field properly as mulletty, i.e., more evenly distributed. As drawn now, the design looks more like an attempt to depict a constellation ... which is not permitted as a charge in Society heraldry. (LoAR 28 Dec 86, p. 9)

The design is unbalanced in the extreme, mostly due to the attempt to counterfeit the effect of a constellation (these are forbidden for Society heraldry). (LoAR Aug 88, p. 22)

Contrast

The contrast was so poor between the argent [charge] and Or ["markings"] of the [charge] that it was impossible for most to identify clearly what it was at any distance. Although this may be a "[charge] proper", it does not serve well for identification. Perhaps the submittor would consider delineating the identifying markings in a colour? (LoAR 27 Sep 86, p. 10)

Antlers proper have been defined as "white or light yellow brown" (Wilhelm von Schlussel, 26 December, 1983) so there is insufficient contrast between the antlers and the argent chief. (LoAR 27 Sep 86, p. 11)

The extremely low contrast level between the [azure charge] and the vert portion of the field renders [it] almost unidentifiable. (LoAR 27 Sep 86, p. 12)

The [copper charges proper], whose default tincture must be heraldically Or, are metal on metal because of their position [against argent and Or primary charge], to the extent that they were unidentifiable at any distance. (LoAR 27 Sep 86, p. 14)

[Fieldless badge, charge color, winged metal] Note that there is no field that this can "legally" be placed upon with adequate contrast (gules would provide adequate visual contrast, but would technically be colour on colour since the [charge] is the primary element here). However, since both tinctures are united in a single charge, this is legitimate according to AR13b. (LoAR 26 Oct 86, p. 3)

It was the consensus of those present at the Laurel meeting that the contrast between the azure portion of the [per saltire] field and the brown and black of the [charge] was so great as to render the position of the beast unclear at any distance. (LoAR 26 Oct 86, p. 11)

[Sword entwined with a rose vine proper, on a party two-color field] This ... has some serious problems with contrast as the portions of the roses and their leafing and vining fall into the field. (In fact, the leaves vert are invisible on the vert portion of the field and almost invisible on the azure portion of the field.) (LoAR 25 Jan 87, p. 18)

Since human flesh [proper] is a "light" tincture, it has insufficient contrast with the argent field. (LoAR 25 Jan 87, p. 19)

The device [a demi-maiden conjoined to a tree stump] has some contrast problems: the upper portion of the [color] staff and the [color] hair of the maiden disappear into the upper [color] portion of the field. While these are details of the charge, in this case, where the charge itself is so unusual that its identity is not immediately obvious, the lack of contrast seriously affects the identifiability of the charge. (LoAR 25 Jan 87, p. 21)

The grape vine [proper] has insufficient contrast with the [gules] field: the brown vine and green leaves are almost invisible, although the grapes themselves, carefully placed on the [primary charge], show up reasonably well. If you consider the vine a major design element, the device must be returned for breaching the Rule of Tincture. (LoAR 25 Jan 87, p. 23)

The contrast between the sable [Charge] and the azure portion of the [per bend] field was so poor that the primary charge was unidentifiable, even at a distance of a foot. We would suggest that the submittor modify the tincture of the primary charge or of the field colour to obtain a better contrast. (LoAR 25 Jan 87, p. 25)

[Tierced per fess of three tinctures, two identical charges and a third charge, all counterchanged] This is not period style. Even were there only two tinctures involved, the visual complexity (these appear to be two different types of charge divided per fess and overlying a fess) would make the effect confusing. This would be far better if the one of the charges were placed on the fess surrounded by three of the other charge. (LoAR 25 Jan 87, p. 26)

[A rose overall Or, slipped and leaved vert] It might be argued that in this case the slipping and leaving are non-trivial and should be required to obey AR4 which dictates that charges overall should be required to have adequate contrast with the field, not the underlying charge. However, in this case, ... we elect to allow an exception as specifically provided for in AR4. This exception is peculiar to this submission and should not be taken as setting any general precedents. (LoAR 28 Feb 87, p. 7)

The contrast between the sable portions of the field on which the key portions of the head and body lie and the vert of the beastie [are such] that [it] would ... be unrecognizable. (LoAR 28 Feb 87, p. 16)

The "flaming" Or surrounding the argent blade [of the sword] has insufficient contrast to the point where the blade is nearly invisible. Were the flames proper (i.e., gules against the blade, Or against the field) the contrast would be immeasurably improved. (LoAR 28 Feb 87, p. 16)

There was almost unanimous agreement amongst the commenters that so much of the argent [overall charge] lay on the argent [ordinary] that it would be unidentifiable. (LoAR 29 Mar 87, p. 15)

The contrast between sable and purpure is too poor to permit the use of this complex [wavy] line of division. The overlying barrulet only makes the situation worse since it distracts the eye from such contrast as does exist between the two tinctures. (LoAR 29 Mar 87, p. 15)

Fields checky of two colours have not been permitted for some time. (LoAR 29 Mar 87, p. 16)

The mountain lion [proper] on the emblazon sheet is shown as a dark brown, but all our sources show the beast as a much lighter tincture that could only be blazoned as Or, so the cat would have insufficient contrast with the argent field. (LoAR 29 Mar 87, p. 21)

In the Rules published at the end of Master Wilhelm's tenure as Laurel, it is clearly stated (IX.4) "those partitions allowed to use two colors or two metals should not use complex lines of division, as those will be difficult to discern at a distance, due to poor contrast" and (IX.5) "the basic requirement in all cases is that there be sufficient contrast for clear visibility". (LoAR 29 Mar 87, p. 23)

Proper charges must always have "sufficient contrast" [with the field or charges they overlie]. (LoAR 29 Mar 87, p. 24)

After much consideration (and several examinations of the emblazon), there seemed to be insufficient contrast between the argent blade of the sword and the Or flames that surround it. Both the blade and the flames are major design elements and, unfortunately, the argent fades into the Or to such an extent that the sword appears to be "bladed of flames Or: making the flames proper would resolve the problem. (LoAR 26 Apr 87, p. 11)

We felt a fretty must be considered in the same context as a field ermined. In the case of the fretty, even when drawn with very narrow lathes, a greater proportion of the field is covered than is the case for a field ermined. If a field sable, ermined Or (i.e., pean) specifically is permitted to be surmounted by a charge gules, it would seem unjust to deny the same license to a field sable, fretty Or. (LoAR 24 May 87, p. 11)

AR2d indicates that "neutral tinctures may be used with any metal, color, or fur, except either of the component tinctures". While it is stated that the component tinctures may be used in simple cases, the underlying stricture is that a simple case only exists where the identity of the overlying charge is clearly identifiable. This is not the case with the Or chief placed on the field which is largely Or at the point where it intersects with the chief. (LoAR 24 May 87, p. 16)

After lengthy consideration, we have decided that, given the wording of the current rules on contrast, which specifically allow placement of gules on pean, this submission must be permitted. The submittor should be informed, however, the unusual monster will be virtually unidentifiable since the distinguishing features are almost entirely on a relatively low contrast field. Were the tinctures of the [party] field reversed ..., the [monster] would be much more recognizable. (LoAR 28 Jun 87, p. 1)

One of the requirements for the use of a complex line of division with two tinctures drawn from the same class is that they have "sufficient constrast". Although the rules do make allusion to fields which are all "light", in most cases fields entirely divided of Or and argent do not support most complex lines of division. In this particular case, where the wings of the birds, lying along the line of division, distract the eye from its nature, it is difficult to determine which line of division has been used. (LoAR 26 Jul 87, p. 9)

This badge, while marginally legal since the [color beasts] maintain the [metal charge], would be vastly improved if both types of charges were of [a single] class of tincture. (LoAR Aug 87, p. 9)

[Barry wavy azure and argent, a charged lozenge azure between four secondaries] Under AR1c, the use of one of the component tinctures on a field which otherwise would be neutral is forbidden except in the simplest of cases. This is not a simple case. (LoAR 31 Oct 87, p. 11)

[A bear sable atop a stump Or maintaining a sword argent breathing upon it flames proper] This badge ... clearly violates the spirit of the rules on contrast, as it is difficult [to] imagine any field on which it would display adequate contrast. (LoAR 28 Nov 87, p. 10)

[Sable, a fly agaric mushroom proper] As the mushroom is capped gules, this violates the rule of tincture. (LoAR 19 Dec 87, p. 18)

The exemption from the "Rule of Tincture" extended to a chief in some periods of mundane heraldry is not permissible in Society heraldry. Thus the gules chief on the sable field is "colour on colour". (LoAR 19 Mar 88, p. 19)

[Per fess pean and argent, a pegasus argent and a branch of roses proper linked by a chain azure] The links of the chain disappear against the black field and, while the azure on an argent field in theory ought to be visible, in practise the links are nearly indistinguishable from the foliage. (LoAR 23 Apr 88, p. 16)

The primary criterion for determining whether a charge proper has sufficient contrast is the visibility of the portion of the charge which identifies it. (LoAR 23 Apr 88, p. 18)

[Or, fretty of a color, a charge argent] There is insufficient contrast between the [charge] and the field which is predominantly Or. (LoAR 29 May 88, p. 25)

[Gules, fretty Or, a charge sable] The sable [charge] on the essentially gules field is colour on colour. (LoAR 29 May 88, p. 26)

The purpure canton on the sable field breaks the well-established rules on contrast. (LoAR 29 May 88, p. 27)

The head is not really identifiable as a pelican's head, the only indicator to distinguish it being the gouttes de sang placed on the gules portion of the field (thus rendered totally invisible). (LoAR Jun 88, p. 20)

[The principal herald] is correct when he states that the current rules specifically allow the pean [ordinary] to be placed on the vert field. Nonetheless the contrast is still abysmal. [Submission registered] (LoAR Aug 88, p. 11)

Society heraldry does not consider ermine furs to be neutral: rather they are considered to be of the same category as the underlying field.... Counter-ermine must be considered as if it were sable. (LoAR Aug 88, p. 17)

The basis for the limitation on wreathing of two tinctures of the same category is the reduction of identifiability that ensues. (LoAR Aug 88, p. 17)

The piebald horse is still largely either brown or black and white. In this case, the hose was brown and white with black hooves, mane and tail. The white portions of the horse simply did not have adequate contrast with the argent [field] on which it was laid (the hooves almost look like they are floating in mid-air with no legs attached). (LoAR Aug 88, p. 17)

[Sable, a bordure gules] The bordure violates the rules on contrast (Society heraldry does not allow the latitude to bordures of cadency that late mundane heraldry does). (LoAR Aug 88, p. 22)

Although minor details of a charge may break tincture, the crining and furring of the beast here is not minor. The contrast between the sable of the lower extremities of the [monster] and the vert of the field is so dim that the lower portion of the monster fades into the field. [Submission returned] (LoAR Aug 88, p. 23)

Poor contrast with regard to the spears there is indeed, since their [brown] hafts fade into the sable field so that the spearheads appear to float in chief. (LoAR 27 Nov 88, p. 24)

[Per bend gules and ermine, a monster argent, detailed Or] The poor contrast virtually eradicates any visual difference to be derived from the cumulative tincture change in the details and the difference in position of the hooves (the latter lie entirely on the ermine field and are nearly invisible). (LoAR 26 Feb 89, p. 18)

The [argent] blade of the sword, lying almost entirely on the Or portion of the field, is virtually unidentifiable even when (especially when) entwined by the stems of the roses. (LoAR 26 Mar 89, p. 20)

The style we strive for is that of an earlier period when heraldry was actually used for identification, not book plates and carriage embellishments. This is the underlying principle behind the ban on complexity and the requirements for contrast. (LoAR 30 Apr 89, p. 10)

Or does not have adequate contrast with ermine in our system. (LoAR 21 May 89, p. 24)

[Per pale gules and pean, a chief counterchanged] There was some feeling that this "pushed the envelope" for low contrast field/charge combinations, but it is technically legal under the current rules. (LoAR 30 Jul 89, p. 4)

The Or [charge] on the ermine field is "metal upon metal" under our rules. (LoAR 27 Aug 89, p. 24)

The low contrast of the counterermine on the vert is specifically allowed by the old rules (AR1d), but not by the new (Armorial Contrast, VIII.2). [Device registered] (LoAR 26 Nov 89, p. 10)

Under both the old rules and the new the contrast between the [argent flower] which lies entirely on the erminois portion of the field is not acceptable (note that the section on contrasting tinctures in the new rules allows good contrast between an element equally divided of a color and metal and any other element as long as identifiability is maintained). The back portion of the [monster's head] and that [flower] just vanish into the field in an unacceptable manner. (LoAR 26 Nov 89, p. 34)

Motley may not be of two colours (it could be a colour and a metal). (LoAR 31 Dec 89, p. 22)

[The submitting herald] is correct when he notes that later period heraldry did place ermine on Or or, more commonly, Or on ermine. Most of the examples cited were granted or confirmed or appeared in rolls from the Tudor period and there is some doubt as to whether the use of ermined furs as a generally neutral colour was all that common in period. Be that as it may, long since the College of Arms decided that the interests of the Society, particularly its need for heraldry recognisable in battle conditions in poor weather or across a large encampment required somewhat higher standards of contrast than prevail in contemporary mundane heraldry. This decision was reviewed and discussed at some length in the course of the rules discussion and there was considerable support for strengthening the requirements for contrast, not weakening them. (LoAR 31 Dec 89, p. 24)

A charge gyronny of two metals is not registerable under either the old rules or the new. (LoAR 25 Feb 90, p. 22)

The gules [semy] on the vert field violate the rules for contrast under both old and new rules ("colour on colour"). (LoAR 25 Feb 90, p. 22)

Per pall of three colours was disallowed for poor contrast under the old rules. This has been explicitly stated in the new rules in section VIII.2.: "Elements evenly divided in three tinctures must have good contrast between two of their parts." (LoAR 29 Apr 90, p. 14)

The rules allow good contrast between an element equally divided of a colour and metal and another element "as long as identifiability is maintained". (LoAR 17 Jun 90, p. 17)

The neutrality of the divided field is only permitted where it does not diminish the identifiability of charges laid upon it. (LoAR 17 Jun 90, p. 17)

Coronet

The use of the baronial coronet has been disallowed in Society armoury since 1984. (LoAR Jun 88, p. 20)

Cotise

Technically, however, the cotises are secondary charges and should be counted separately from any other changes that are made to the bend (this appears to be mundane practice, reflected not only in the organization of Papworth's Ordinary, but also in the fact that cotising could be used to create cadet arms). (LoAR 24 Jan 88, p. 1)

It is clear from mundane ordinaries and period armorial treatises that cotises are indeed regarded as secondary charges, rather than merely a variation in the line of the ordinary. (LoAR 23 Apr 88, p. 22)

The cotising gules and the sable charges which lie outside the cotising are two separate groups of secondaries. (LoAR Jul 88, p. 11)

This no longer conflicts ... because of the addition of the cotises to the original device. The cotises are clearly a second group of secondary charges so that an additional point of difference can be obtained from adding them. (LoAR 27 Nov 88, p. 12)

Our ultimate conclusion must be that ... the consideration of the cotise as a sort of complex line of division for purposes of difference [is] not supported by Society or mundane tradition. (CL 23 Dec 88, p. 7)

Cotising a bend in one tincture with another tincture is quite common in period rolls of arms and cannot be considered an anomaly. (Although it is far more common when the field is a colour and the bend and cotises are two metals.) (LoAR 31 Mar 90, p. 4)

Cotton Hank

The usual depiction of a cotton hank is as a sort of palewise figure eight bound with a tight loop at the centre. (LoAR 21 Feb 88, p. 5)

Counterchange

[Per pale azure and argent, a fess and overall a roundel, all counterchanged] This submission provided an excellent example of the problem "modern" counterchange designs present when determining difference. In period, it would have been a definite anomaly for a charge overall to share the charges of the field and the primary charge in a counterchange relationship, but counterchange of overall charges, when used in moderation, has become relatively accepted in the Society. This leaves us with the question of the weight to be allowed to tincture changes derived from modifications of the base tinctures (i.e., those of the field). All are agreed that there is a clear major point for the addition of the fess and a clear minor point for the modification of the colour in the field. [One commenter felt] that all changes in the colour of the charges were negligible resulting in a conflict.... [Another] felt that, since any tincture could have been used on the roundel, the change in the roundel should count a full minor point. While [these last] arguments were eloquent, it is impossible to ignore the "derivative" nature of the tincture completely. However, after considering a number of cases in which the issue of the weight to be derived from "derivative" changes to counterchanged charges, it seems that such are not considered "negligible", merely weak, i.e. insufficient even when taken with the minor for the field to provide adequate difference between Society badges or between badges and mundane arms. In this particular case, there are two "hemi-semi-demi-points of difference", one for the change to the fess and another for the change to the roundel. Taken with the other changes, this would seem to provide adequate difference. (Irreverent comment from the Laurel meeting: "If the fighters have to calibrate blows, do the heralds have to calibrate points of difference.") (LoAR 26 Apr 87, pp. 7-8)

[Per chevron argent and sable, an annulet counterchanged] This is in conflict with the mundane arms ... ("Gyronny of eight sable and argent, an annulet counterchanged.")... All the examples in the Rules for Submission make it clear that the "automatic sufficient difference" for counterchange is intended to apply only between a plain field charged and a divided field with the same charge counterchanged along the line of division. In this case only the line of division is changed. (LoAR 21 Feb 88, p. 14)

[Quarterly, a bow, drawn and nocked of a sword fesswise, counterchanged] The device does ... run afoul of the ban on counterchanging long, thin objects along their long axis. (LoAR 23 Apr 88, p. 22)

Between Society armoury, counterchanging along a[n added] line of division contributes only a major point of difference, not automatic sufficient difference as it does with the mundane. (LoAR 29 May 88, p. 21)

Complex counterchanging involving three [tinctures] is not period style. (LoAR 29 May 88, p. 25)

[A sword palewise, winged at the hilt, counterchanged palewise] This run[s] afoul of the ban on long, thin objects counterchanged along their long axis. (LoAR Jun 88, p. 19)

[A pale, overall an antelope counterchanged] It should be noted that the counterchange here significantly diminishes the identifiability of the already unusual animate charge and is therefore highly inadvisable. [Returned for conflict] (LoAR 30 Oct 88, p. 16)

The device falls afoul of AR6d ("A long skinny charge shall not be counterchanged along its major axis."): even with the axehead, the counterchange of the handle unacceptably reduces the identifiability of the charge. (LoAR 15 Jan 89, p. 11)

[A pale, overall an orle of leaves counterchanged] The placement of the orle of leaves [is] visually confusing and poor style. (LoAR 26 Feb 89, p. 19)

The counterchanging along the [complex] line of division unacceptably reduced the identifiability of the already unusually placed [charge]. (LoAR 18 Jun 89, p. 9)

[On a fess between two pairs of charges in saltire, a beasts head between two mullets; four tinctures, the tertiaries of two different tinctures] The number of different charges and tinctures combine to make this rather busy. [Device registered] (LoAR 30 Jul 89, p. 8)

[Per pale, a beast, overall a bend cotised counterchanged] This falls under the prohibition of excessive counterchanging under the old rules and the requirement for identifiability in the new rules (Armorial Identifiability, X.3, p. 11). There was a strong consensus on the part of the College that the complex counterchanging rendered the [beast] virtually unidentifiable. (LoAR 26 Nov 89, p. 40)

[Gyronny, a knot counterchanged] There was a considerable consensus in the College that counterchanging the knot so complexly rendered it virtually unidentifiable. Making the knot a solid colour or simplifying the field division so that the knot was not cut into so many small pieces would remove this problem. (LoAR 21 Jan 90, p. 20)

[On a pale surmounted by a bend embattled on the upper edge counterchanged, a beast's head and an anvil] The overall design [is] just too complex and unbalanced for period style. The difficulties which were encountered ... in creating a blazon which would guarantee that the "staircase" would never overlie the charges on the pale was indicative of the problem. The counterchanging and the diminished size of the bend required by the [beast's] head above it on the pale decreased the immediate recognizability of the bend. Additionally, while the number of layers involved here can be reduced to three by reblazoning, the overall effects is visually complex and overly confusing, creating an effect of motion as the eye follows the "staircase" from top to bottom rather than processing the charges in a normal static manner. (LoAR 21 Jan 90, pp. 20-21)

[A chevron, overall a winged beast rampant counterchanged] The complex counterchanging of the [beast] renders it virtually unidentifiable. [Returned] (LoAR 29 Apr 90, p. 17)

Crest

We do not register crests for Society use. (LoAR 23 Apr 88, p. 20)

While we continue to have some difficulty in seeing how we can limit registration of crests if we allow registration of collocations of charges that have the peculiar look and feel of crests (if it quacks...), it is undeniable that there is nothing in the new rules on this issue either way. Although precedent might be held to rule in this case, thus forcing a return in the current instance, we feel that the spirit of the example used under Fieldless Style (VIII.5) of the new rules, the ostrich plumes issuant from the crown, is crestiform enough to lead a reasonable submittor into submitting such a device. [Badge registered] (LoAR 31 Dec 89, p. 13)

Cronal

Although they are a documented period charge, the cronals are clearly too close visually to the reserved crown/coronet to be accepted for use in the Society. (LoAR 28 Feb 87, p. 21)

Cross

[A cross nowed and fleury] The badge [is not] really period in style. The terminations of the cross are not really fleury either although that is the nearest blazon from standard heraldry. (LoAR 25 Jan 87, p. 17)

The cross overall obscures the underlying cross to such an extent that it is unclear what form the ends of the arms are intended to take. (LoAR 29 Mar 87, p. 20)

The [gyronny] cross overlies the cup to such an extent that the cup's identity is unclear (and it is not obvious how this problem could be avoided). Moreover, much of the portions of the cross which determine that it is bottonny fade away, the sable against the blue of the field and the argent against the Or. (LoAR 26 Jul 87, p. 13)

[Crusilly conjoined, voided in each arm of a delf] This [is] not period style.... The semy of conjoined elements is not really period and it is almost impossible to distinguish the identity of the rather unusual charge scattered on the field. (LoAR 27 Sep 87, p. 10)

[Crusilly conjoined countervoided] [The submittor] has demonstrated that the design element indeed existed in period, but not that it is appropriate for period heraldry. Note that the use of period design elements in Society heraldry is not mandated but rather allowed on a case-by-case basis. For such usages to be accepted, they must have a single identifiable form and must be compatible with period heraldic style.... No one single design could be derived from any blazon we could concoct to represent this. (LoAR 23 Apr 88, p. 18)

While [the swallowtailed tau cross] is unusual, it has been formed on the model of the Maltese cross and seems acceptable to us for use in the Society. (LoAR 21 May 89, p. 3)

[The principal herald] has provided compelling evidence from illustrations of the regalia of the Order of the Knights of Calatrava that what the Society calls a Cross of Calatrava is merely an artistic variant of the cross flory. (LoAR 21 May 89, p. 20)

We could see no more than a minor point of difference between the cross of conjoined ermine spots and the cross fleury. (LoAR 21 May 89, p. 23)

The [papal] cross was not used in secular armoury except in those cases where it was granted as an augmentation by the Pope. This being the case, we feel it inappropriate to modify its current status as a reserved charge. (LoAR 18 Jun 89, p. 11)

[Three pallets and three barrulets fretted in sinister base] While this resubmission laudably simplifies the device, it does not resolve the problem with the off-center "cross" which produces a distinctly non-period dynamically unbalanced design. (LoAR 22 Oct 89, p. 10)

While many of the members of the College had a major twitch at the use of the burning cross, this form does not resemble any of the forms nor use of any of the colour combinations that we could find used by the KKK or other white supremacist groups and the cross enflamed is a symbol used in religious iconography with some frequency in a positive manner. (LoAR 31 Dec 89, p. 3)

We cannot agree with [the submitting herald] that the mullet of four points should be considered a "form of cross". (LoAR 29 Apr 90, p. 7)

Crown

The crown voided has a very prominent precedent in the arms of the West. (LoAR 27 Sep 86, p. 2)

The crown is reserved to the arms of Kingdoms, Principalities and Royal Peers and may not be used, even with royal permission, by other individuals or groups. (LoAR 27 Sep 86, p. 9)

Although they are a documented period charge, the cronals are clearly too close visually to the reserved crown/coronet to be accepted for use in the Society. (LoAR 28 Feb 87, p. 21)

Cup and Goblet

After much soul-searching and a comparison of the emblazons, we decided that the shapes are too similar for complete difference of charge to exist between a goblet and an hourglass ... under both the old rules and the new. The visual assonance is very clear: the only difference between the two devices with the hourglass drawn in one of its standard Society depictions (i.e., without the posts) is the balance and "fatness" of the lower portion of the goblet. (LoAR 26 Nov 89, p. 36)

 


D

Dancetty

As has been well established in the past by a considerable body of mundane scholarly research, as well as by Society precedent, period usage appears to have reserved the term "dancetty" for ordinaries rather than lines of division: the distinction between "dancetty" and "indented" when applied to ordinaries being not one of amplitude, ... but a distinction parallel to that between counterembattled and bretessed. (LoAR 24 Dec 88, p. 10)

Default

It is not necessary to specify that [the scourge] has three lashes since this is the default for this charge (Franklyn, Shield and Crest, p. 207). (LoAR 28 Feb 87, p. 14)

It is not necessary to specify that the [charges] are in bend since that is the default position for three charges beneath a bend. (LoAR 29 Mar 87, p. 3)

The default label in Society heraldry is throughout. (LoAR 29 Mar 87, p. 8)

The default for a cat's head is not cabossed. (LoAR Aug 87, p. 2)

The position of the heads must be specified since guardant is the default position for owls. (LoAR Aug 87, p. 6)

Although the default posture for closed books in older examples appears to [be] palewise, since so many modern coats (e.g., Cambridge) have closed books fesswise, ... it should be specified that [the books in this submission] are palewise. Indeed, it is also necessary to specify the orientation of the books [spines to sinister]. (LoAR 31 Oct 87, p. 8)

In depictions of the [lion's] jambe where no orientation is given, it has the "business end", i.e., the claws, to chief. (LoAR 28 Nov 87, p. 4)

The "ramping" posture ... is the default for dragons and wyverns. (LoAR 28 Nov 87, p. 6)

[A bend between three roses, one and two] It is necessary to specify that one rose is in chief and two in base because the opposite situation is the default. (LoAR Aug 88, p. 4)

The default lamb is passant. (LoAR 30 Oct 88, p. 5)

The default for a single-horned anvil has the business end, i.e. the "pointier" end, to dexter. (LoAR 30 Jul 89, p. 7)

Delf

In period a delf pierced would not have the piercing cover such a large portion of its "area" nor would it serve as a "frame" for another charge. However, both the proportionally greater "voided" space and the "frame" effect have been previously established in Society usage for mascles, which are no more complex visually, so it would appear pedantic to object to such a usage here. (LoAR 26 Apr 87, p. 1)

[A delf and a lozenge, voided and interlaced] Given the visual similarity of the primary charge to a number of depictions of a snowflake in Society heraldry and mundane art, this appears to [conflict]. (LoAR Aug 87, p. 13)

The charged delf appeared to be arms of pretense of [mundane arms]. [Submission returned] (LoAR 19 Mar 88, p. 17)

Demotion

Primary charges should not be demoted when a charge is placed overall: in mundane usage it is the charge overall which is considered to have been added for cadency, just as are secondaries around the primary charge. The blazon represents the reality: the primary charge will remain the charge which lies closest to the center of the field in the plane closest to the field. Under certain circumstances, charges overall can be held to have equal weight, but this will not "demote" the original primary charge, if the two are drawn in proper proportion. (LoAR 26 Apr 87, p. 10)

Depiction

There seems to be no standard depiction of a Chinese phoenix ... so that a heraldic artist would be at a loss to determine what to draw. (LoAR 18 Sep 88, p. 15)

The shuttles are neither the standard heraldic shuttle nor the "stick shuttles" previously defined for Society use. As no documentation was provided for this form, the submission must be returned. (LoAR 18 Sep 88, p. 16)

Diapering

As an ordinary wreathed of one colour (or "cabled", as the original blazon had it) has previously been disallowed (February, 1985), we have substituted an orle invected: any interior diapering would not contribute difference in any case. (LoAR Aug 87, p. 6)

Dice

These dice are depicted in the manner that seems to have been the standard in period heraldry (where dice are used). Although these are technically in trian aspect, the "perspective" is kept to a minimum by making the near side of the cube almost a square so that the die is not really seen directly edge on. (LoAR 30 Oct 88, p. 10)

Difference

[Coney rampant vs. otter sejant reguardant] [This] has a clear major [point of difference] for position of the primary charge, a minor for the type of charge (the differences in tail and ears between the coney and otter are worth at least a strong minor when a single animal is in question).... (LoAR 27 Sep 86, p. 5)

Only a minor point of difference can be derived from the eclipsing of the sun, whether you consider it as using a different tincture for part of a charge (analogous to using Or for the wings of an argent pegasus) or a permutation of the main charge (it is analogous to the example of the charge pierced vs. unpierced). (LoAR 27 Sep 86, p. 9)

Although there are two kinds of charges in the group, there is only one group of secondary charges here, in a standard arrangement about the cross. Therefore, technically and visually, there is only a single major point of difference (for the addition of the secondaries) from [Field, a cross]. (LoAR 26 Oct 86, p. 9)

This is the perfect example of a case where the allowance of a full major point of difference for tertiaries made in DR10 should come into play. In both cases the field ... [and] the tincture of the ordinary ... are identical. There is a clear major for the indenting of the [ordinary] here. A major point of difference can be allowed for the tertiaries not only because the differences between the tertiaries are not only striking in degree [type, number, and tincture] but also because the tertiaries lie at the visual center of the field of the shield with virtually no visual distractions on the periphery. The same changes places on a secondary charge (for example, a chief) would not attract the eye with nearly the same force. (LoAR 28 Dec 86, p. 7)

The red rose of Lancaster, like the white rose of York, deserves extra protection versus Society badges which should differ by more than one major point from this particularly famous royal badge. (LoAR 28 Dec 86, p. 14)

A dagger is a sword and a sword is, generally speaking, a sword from the point of view of difference. (LoAR 28 Dec 86, p. 14) (See also: LoAR 28 Dec 86, p. 17)

For purposes of difference a moon in her complement and a plate are functionally identical. (LoAR 25 Jan 87, p. 17) (See also: LoAR 28 May 90, p. 21)

[Goose migrant vs. chimney swift migrant] The cumulative [differences] between the birds are worth a minor point [of difference] at best (in this [migrant] position the primary difference is in the tail configuration). (LoAR 28 Dec 86, p. 16)

The change in position of the charges should carry no extra difference since it is derived entirely from the change in line of division. (LoAR 25 Jan 87, p. 23)

There is ... only a minor point [of difference] for the type of tertiary, since the change of posture is derived from the change in type of charge. (LoAR 25 Jan 87, p. 24)

[Two devices with identical fields and identically charged chiefs, with a single primary charge of different types and tinctures] While there are two points for difference of type and tincture of the primary charge, the devices are otherwise identical and the visual similarity is so overwhelming that the inference of kinship would be inescapable. (LoAR 25 Jan 87, p. 26)

There is no difference between an ordinary and its diminutive. (LoAR 25 Jan 87, p. 28)

There is not a full point of difference between [a] shooting star and an estoile. (LoAR 28 Feb 87, p. 17)

Only a minor point of difference can be derived from merely reversing the tinctures of a partitioned field, even when these are a metal + color combination (Determination of Difference 4.B.1.c). (LoAR 28 Feb 87, p. 19)

No additional difference should be added for the difference in depiction between a dolmen of three uprights and the more usual trilithon: even as a primary charge, the viewer will register "dolmen" and assume that the depiction is artistic license. (LoAR 29 Mar 87, p. 11)

The allocation of a full point of difference for three changes to tertiaries is not automatic by any means and ... should be considered in the context of the visual prominence of the tertiaries, which usually is directly related to the degree to which they are central to the design of the device or, phrased in another way, how early in the recognition process they will be registered by an individual comparing the two devices. (LoAR 29 Mar 87, p. 24)

This differs from the device of [Name] by a major for change of the type of secondaries and a minor for change in tincture of some of a group of secondaries. This is sufficient difference for a badge. (LoAR 26 Apr 87, p. 3)

There is a major point for the difference between a plain field and the semy field in addition to the differences in type and number between two stars and one plate. (LoAR 26 Apr 87, p. 4)

[Per pale azure and argent, a fess and overall a roundel, all counterchanged] This submission provided an excellent example of the problem "modern" counterchange designs present when determining difference. In period, it would have been a definite anomaly for a charge overall to share the charges of the field and the primary charge in a counterchange relationship, but counterchange of overall charges, when used in moderation, has become relatively accepted in the Society. This leaves us with the question of the weight to be allowed to tincture changes derived from modifications of the base tinctures (i.e., those of the field). All are agreed that there is a clear major point for the addition of the fess and a clear minor point for the modification of the colour in the field.

[One commenter felt] that all changes in the colour of the charges were negligible resulting in a conflict.... [Another] felt that, since any tincture could have been used on the roundel, the change in the roundel should count a full minor point. While [these last] arguments were eloquent, it is impossible to ignore the "derivative" nature of the tincture completely. However, after considering a number of cases in which the issue of the weight to be derived from "derivative" changes to counterchanged charges, it seems that such are not considered "negligible", merely weak, i.e. insufficient even when taken with the minor for the field to provide adequate difference between Society badges or between badges and mundane arms. In this particular case, there are two "hemi-semi-demi-points of difference", one for the change to the fess and another for the change to the roundel. Taken with the other changes, this would seem to provide adequate difference. (Irreverent comment from the Laurel meeting: "If the fighters have to calibrate blows, do the heralds have to calibrate points of difference.") (LoAR 26 Apr 87, pp. 7-8)

By tradition the Society has considered a compass star to differ by at least a strong minor from a mullet. (LoAR 24 May 87, p. 3)

The "enarching" here is merely one of the standard period methods of depicting a normal chevron and therefore there is insufficient difference from the mundane arms of [Name]. (LoAR 24 May 87, p. 14)

Courant is only a minor point of difference from passant (Determination of Difference, p. 2, under posture). (LoAR 24 May 87, p. 15)

[A three-headed thistle proper flowered gules vs. a three-headed thistle proper flowered purpure] So unusual is the tricapitate thistle that the arrangement overrides any minor difference added by changing the tincture of part of the thistle to purpure. Note also that this change of tincture is severely weakened because of the small portion of the plant affected and the indifference with which heads gules and heads purpure are interchanged in Scots herald (in this context many period Scotsmen seem not to have perceived any difference between the two tinctures). (LoAR 24 May 87, p. 18) (See also: LoAR 24 May 87, p. 16)

DR10 specifically limits the cases where a tertiary charge may derive a major point of difference from two changes to the device to those devices which involve only a field and a charged ordinary. (LoAR 24 May 87, p. 17)

[The issue was raised of] whether the addition of the wings is indeed a minor point of difference or should be counted as a major point of difference.... The determination of difference depends not only [on] the proportion of the charge which is modified but also on the "pattern of recognition" involved. In other words, if the modifications create a beast which has a separate identity of its own, either in period or modern heraldry (e.g., a lion as opposed to a sea-lion), it is feasible for the modifications to produce a major point of difference. If the modifications produce a beast which is clearly derivative (e.g., a winged sheep), then the difference created will be minor. (LoAR 14 Jun 87, p. 6)

Any interior diapering would not contribute difference in any case. (LoAR Aug 87, p. 6)

[Carp embowed vs. dolphin embowed] The fish on both pieces of armoury are virtually identical. (LoAR Aug 87, p. 10)

The differences between the two serpents [cobra coiled affronty vs. rattlesnake coiled to sinister] in position and type are so weak as to be virtually negligible. The two may be blazoned differently for canting or symbolic purposes, but are not significantly different visually. (LoAR Aug 87, p. 10)

Between an escarbuncle of six spokes and one of eight there is a distinction not a difference. (LoAR Aug 87, p. 12)

There is a clear point of difference for the differences of posture, but the double-heads are not sufficiently visible against the peacock's tail to add the necessary extra difference. (LoAR Aug 87, p. 14)

Note that the logical distinction between granting full difference for three changes to a group of minors (i.e., a situation where there is functionally complete visual difference of tertiaries) is based on the perception of difference reflected in period cadency. A complete change of type of tertiary or of tincture of tertiary, etc. would be sufficient to create secondary cadency in many heraldic jurisdictions (though admittedly not in all). Changing both could be used to define tertiary cadency (i.e., the second son might use a chief charged with three fleurs-de-lys gules while his son used three fleurs-de-lys azure). On the other hand, addition or subtraction of a set of charges can only produce one change. (LoAR 27 Sep 87, p. 6)

[Lion sejant vs. house cat sejant] The posture of the two beasts is essentially identical (the posture of the tail is not generally heraldically significant) and the distinction between a lion and a domestic cat under the current rules can be no more than a minor point of difference. (LoAR 19 Dec 87, p. 19)

[The submitting herald] errs in considering that there is complete difference of charge between a tree eradicated vert and a tree eradicated blasted vert: at best there is a minor point of difference. (Nor is there complete difference of charge between a lion and a lion defamed: in fact, Society precedent would hold that the difference between the two types of lion would be negligible.) (LoAR 21 Feb 88, p. 6)

[A fess between three crosses and in chief a seahorse] Under the definition of "a group of charges" in the section on Determination of Difference, the crosses and the seahorse constitute two different groups of charges. This is not simply because of the difference in type and tincture of the charges, but because they are not in fact arranged as a group in a standard arrangement. The crosses do constitute a group of secondary charges as defined under subheading 2 "One or more charges accompanying ... an ordinary or primary charge."). The seahorse here is specifically emblazoned in one of the most common traditional positions for a brisure mark (centered in chief) and in fact looks like a brisure mark added to cadet arms. As such, it is specifically covered by subhead 3 ("A secondary charge that is obviously not associated with other secondary charges, such as a bordure, a chief, an orle, or a brisure."). (LoAR 21 Feb 88, p. 7)

[Wolf's pawprint v. bear's pawprint] No difference can be derived from the change in kind of pawprint. (LoAR 21 Feb 88, p. 11)

We cannot agree ... that the change from argent to erminois is worth a major and a minor since two distinct changes are made: this is not a change from one tincture to another with a further addition of charges but rather a change from one recognized heraldic tincture to another (that one of the tinctures is a fur is interesting but does not add extra difference). (LoAR 21 Feb 88, p. 14)

[Two towers conjoined by a doubly-arched bridge vs. castle] [There is a] strong resemblance of the conjoint charge to a standard depiction of a castle: there is not the required difference here. (LoAR 21 Feb 88, p. 14)

[Per chevron argent and sable, an annulet counterchanged] This is in conflict with the mundane arms ... ("Gyronny of eight sable and argent, an annulet counterchanged."... All the examples in the Rules for Submission make it clear that the "automatic sufficient difference" for counterchange is intended to apply only between a plain field charged and a divided field with the same charge counterchanged along the line of division. In this case only the line of division is changed. (LoAR 21 Feb 88, p. 14)

Traditionally, we have considered a fur a "tincture" for the purposes of counting difference so there is a major point for the plain counter-ermine field as opposed to the divided field [per pale ermine and counter-ermine]. (LoAR 23 Apr 88, p. 5)

We [are] convinced that it is not inappropriate to give the submittor the benefit of the doubt on the cumulative effect of the accumulated minor points of difference [one major, two minors] which would carry this clear. (LoAR 23 Apr 88, p. 8)

In cases where two pieces of armoury consist solely of a field semy of charges, a major point of difference may be derived from a complete change of charge tincture or a major change in the type of charge. (LoAR 23 Apr 88, p. 9)

No matter how drastic the change, you can only get a major point of difference for the position change of the primary charges. (LoAR 23 Apr 88, p. 16)

The addition or change of a charge overall to a pre-existing coat is a recognized form of indicating cadency (see the examples in Gayre, Heraldic Cadency, chapters XIV and XV) so the modifications to the charge overall [are not] sufficient in and of themselves to establish difference between two coats. (LoAR 23 Apr 88, p. 17)

[Or, four pallets gules, overall a saltire counterchanged] This is in conflict with the arms of Aragon cited on the letter of intent ("Or, four pallets gules"). Only a major point of difference can be derived from the addition of the saltire overall; no extra difference can be derived from tincture between something and nothing. AR 18b, which grants automatic sufficient difference from mundane arms for the addition of the primary charge, does not apply here, since the saltire is added over an already charged field. (LoAR 23 Apr 88, p. 19)

No more than a major point of difference may be derived from changes to tertiaries alone. (LoAR 23 Apr 88, p. 22)

Based both on period practise and modern perception, it is clear that the difference between a single-towered tower and a multi-towered castle should be at most a minor point of difference as we currently count difference. In circumstances where the building is a large central primary charge, this may be a strong minor. In circumstances where there are multiple charges whose size and impact is therefore diminished and/or the charges are removed to the periphery of the device, the difference may be reduced to a weak minor or a negligible point. (LoAR 29 May 88, p. 20)

Between Society armoury, counterchanging along a[n added] line of division contributes only a major point of difference, not automatic sufficient difference as it does with the mundane. (LoAR 29 May 88, p. 21)

The difference between eagle and hawk is really non-existent. (LoAR 29 May 88, p. 24)

Given the traditional depiction of the mullet of six points in the Society, we felt that there was at least a minor point of difference from an estoile when primary charges were involved. (LoAR Jun 88, p. 1)

[Catherine wheel vs. cog wheel] There is no way to call a full point of difference between the two types of wheel. (LoAR Jun 88, p. 15)

Since ... changes of tincture which are derivative from a change in the tincture of the field are diminished in force, we must conclude that this badge does in fact conflict. (LoAR Jul 88, p. 17)

The rules allow a minor for the difference between a head couped and a head erased. (LoAR Jul 88, p. 19)

Traditionally, Society has made a distinction between gules and purpure that appears not to have existed, by and large, in period heraldry and much relatively modern heraldry. This distinction has held true even for thistle flowers, even though this has very little basis in mundane heraldry. (LoAR 18 Sep 88, p. 9)

The question of whether charges overall should be considered primary or secondary (and thus granted the full weight of any changes made to them given the current limitation on difference derivable solely from secondary charges is thornier....

In this case, the criterion we have had to use is the way that the two devices will be perceived by the observer. Both devices are identical save for the type and tincture of the charge set overall. All the difference is derived ... from a single design element. In a similar situation (modifications to secondaries set around the central design element), it has been held that adequate difference between Society devices cannot be derived from cumulative changes to the same charge or set of charges. We feel the same situation applies here. (LoAR 18 Sep 88, p. 17)

There is a minor for the difference in posture derived from rampant as opposed to rampant guardant. (LoAR 30 Oct 88, p. 6)

Some members of the College were somewhat confused on the manner in which difference should be counted in considering armoury where divided fields exist. In such cases, the same standards for difference apply as for plain field devices, i.e., a group of three charges distributed over two "halves" of the field are still considered as a "group", not two separate sets of primary charges. (LoAR 27 Nov 88, p. 12)

The beaking and legging here is an artistic specification, and does not add difference. (LoAR 27 Nov 88, p. 17)

[On a pale between two pairs of charges in saltire a beast vs. On a pale endorsed a tree -- all tinctures same except for tertiaries] Society tradition appears in most cases to enumerate charges in saltire as separate elements for the purpose of difference and so there is a major and minor point for the difference in type and number of secondary charges as well as the difference to be derived from the tertiaries. (LoAR 24 Dec 88, p. 8)

We have traditionally allowed a major point of difference for the posture differences between "couchant" and "sejant". (LoAR 15 Jan 89, p. 4)

[One-handled vs. two-handled mug] We cannot agree [that a minor point of difference may be obtained between the two] as this is the sort of artistic difference that frequently is not even blazoned. (LoAR 26 Feb 89, p. 14)

[Per bend gules and ermine, a monster argent, detailed Or] The poor contrast virtually eradicates any visual difference to be derived from the cumulative tincture change in the details and the difference in position of the hooves (the latter lie entirely on the ermine field and are nearly invisible). (LoAR 26 Feb 89, p. 18)

A major point of difference can be derived from the addition of the tertiary on a single ordinary. (LoAR 26 Mar 89, p. 2)

[Demi-lion vs. natural panther incensed] While it can by no means be assumed that a demi-beast will always be a major point of difference from a whole beast in the same relative position, in this case a comparison of the emblazons shows that the cumulative differences carry this feline well clear of the natural panther.... In addition to the truncation of the lower extremities, there is a significant difference in the portions of the beast that remain: the shape of the head (maned versus maneless), forelegs and tail (shaggy versus smooth) and general treatment (plain versus incensed of flame). (LoAR 30 Apr 89, p. 2)

No matter how many secondaries there are in a group and how large they are, they still count only a major point of difference. (LoAR 21 May 89, p. 18)

We have come to the reluctant conclusion that the armadillo is not a full major point of difference from the hedgehog as it is usually depicted in armoury. The usual distinguishing feature of the hedgehog is its spines and this beast is smooth, but otherwise their profiles are extremely close. (LoAR 21 May 89, p. 19)

[Fleur-de-lis vs. wolf's head jessant-de-lis] We were not able to ... pull a full major point of difference from the addition of the wolf's head since the fleur-de-lis is distinctly a major component, if not the major component of [Name's] badge. (LoAr 21 May 89, p. 20)

[The principal herald] has provided compelling evidence from illustrations of the regalia of the Order of the Knights of Calatrava that what the Society calls a Cross of Calatrava is merely an artistic variant of the cross flory. (LoAR 21 May 89, p. 20)

We could see no more than a minor point of difference between the cross of conjoined ermine spots and the cross fleury. (LoAR 21 May 89, p. 23)

No difference can really be derived from a sinister hand versus a dexter hand. (LoAR 18 Jun 89, p. 9)

It was ruled some time ago that the "chevron throughout" is merely a period variant of the chevron and no difference can be derived from enhancing the chevron. (LoAR 18 Jun 89, p. 9)

The difference in shape between the moth and the dragonfly were not tantamount to a major point of difference. (LoAR 18 Jun 89, p. 12)

The issue is how much difference should be derived from a semy of charges added across only part of the field. Were this added to the entire field, a major point would be derived. Here [over half the field] only a minor can be derived, but the visual effect of that minor is very strong. (LoAR 30 Jul 89, p. 4)

The arms of House ("Vert, a cross argent") cannot be differenced merely by adding a roundel bearing the flag of Finland. In any case, the roundel is essentially an oddly tinctured counterchange and it is dubious whether it should be allowed more than a major point of difference under our rules. (LoAR 30 Jul 89, p. 14)

The addition of the tiny tertiary charge to one of the group of secondaries [is] not really enough to carry this clear. (LoAR 30 Jul 89, p. 19)

Only one major point of difference can be derived from the cumulative changes of posture. (LoAR 27 Aug 89, p. 27)

[The principal herald] has appealed this return on the grounds that a major and minor should be derived from the field because of the change in field division and the partial change in tincture. [There is] long-standing precedent that no more than a single major can be derived from the field except in certain, very specific circumstances. (LoAR 27 Aug 89, p. 28)

Under the current rules, no difference is derived for the field [of a device vs. a fieldless badge] and only a major for the complete difference of the primary charge, since the two primary charges are themselves charged (with the same charge!). (LoAR 22 Oct 89, p. 8)

The tincture of the [unicorn's] horn does not really contribute difference. (LoAR 22 Oct 89, p. 9)

Under the new rules the separate differences for type and predominant tincture of the secondaries would carry it clear, even without considering any differences for orientation. (LoAR 26 Nov 89, p. 14)

By the simple expedient of taking several standard depictions of wings in lure and wings in vol and inverting them, we came to the conclusion that the difference between the lure and the vol is essentially an inversion of the other charge. Therefore, it is our feeling that a clear difference exists between a wing and a vol. (LoAR 26 Nov 89, p. 15

Even under the new rules, two changes to the tertiaries are required to derive difference. (LoAR 26 Nov 89, pp. 38-39)

We have to agree with those who felt that the modification of tincture of fimbriation should contribute no difference here. Indeed, in view of the minimal visual impact of fimbriation, even when drawn properly, it is very difficult to imagine a situation where the addition of fimbriation or the change of the tincture of fimbriation should contribute to difference. (LoAR 26 Nov 89, p. 40)

[Per bend, two trefoils issuant from the line of division vs. per bend sinister, two oak leaves so issuant] While we would normally grant that the oak leaves and trefoils are clearly different, if the distribution of the [identical] field tinctures had not been so different with both line of division and arrangement of tinctures differing, we might have held that a visual conflict existed. As it is, the two are clear, though we suspect that there will be some popular confusion between these two [pieces of] armoury. (LoAR 31 Dec 89, p. 10)

There is a major point under the old rules for the field difference, but the modification of position [of the only charge] is ... derivative from the modification of the field and cannot contribute difference. Under the new rules there is a clear difference for the field, but again the difference in position of the cross is caused by the change to the field and therefore is not an independent difference (Arrangement Changes, X.4.g). (LoAR 31 Dec 89, p. 19)

[A chevron argent charged with three crosses fleury sable vs. a chevron ermine] While this is clear on technical "count", the only effective change between the two is crosses for ermine spots as a quick sketch of the device drawn from blazon in the period manner showed. (LoAR 31 Dec 89, p. 20)

Under the old rules, the enflaming of the [primary charge] would be a minor and the addition of the [tertiary charge] a minor, which is not enough to carry them clear. Under the new rules, the addition of the [tertiary charge] would be one difference, but the enflaming [of the primary] does not seem to clear the obvious visual similarity here. (LoAR 31 Dec 89, p. 20)

[Sea griffin vs. winged sea-lion] Even if you allow a full major point under the old rules and a clear visual difference under the new for the type of monster, we could not see giving the additional difference needed under either set of rules for the tiny [charge] the monster holds. (LoAR 31 Dec 89, p. 21)

While these are blazoned as cloves, they are well within the parameters for depiction of gouttes and thus no real difference can be derived from type. (LoAR 31 Dec 89, p. 22)

While not denying that there could be legitimate differences in the depiction of a cross of ermine spots, there was a fairly strong focus in commentary on the fact that the College has to consider the submitted emblazon and that emblazon is almost identical to a cross fleury, save for the frou-frou at its center. (LoAR 31 Dec 89, p. 23)

After much consideration and a lot of picture comparisons, we were forced to the conclusion that the visual difference between the triple-towered castle as usually depicted in mundane heraldry and the castle depicted here (with two towers) is not enough to produce a clear minor under the old rules. (LoAR 31 Dec 89, p. 27)

We have traditionally allowed more difference for a tower, as opposed to a castle, as the two are depicted significantly differently in mundane heraldry (see Woodward, Plate XXXII). (LoAR 31 Dec 89, p. 27)

The standing precedent [is] of not allowing "complete difference of charge" between quadrupeds, no matter how different. Under the requirements for Type Change (X.4.e) in the new rules, the shape of the modified rabbit in any normal depiction is clearly different from that of a rhinoceros or an enfield. Since this significant change is type is applied where the charges are primary charges alone on the field, the Difference of Primary Charges rule (X.2) comes into play and the device is definitely clear. (LoAR 31 Dec 89, p. 27)

[Sea-griffin and a chief charged with three crosses vs. dragon segreant and a chief charged with three leeks, all tinctures being the same] Under the new rules, it is our feeling that the Difference of Primary Charges rule (X.2) would apply here: by the standards set down in consideration of Type Changes (X.4.e) the change between the sea-griffin and the dragon would be a significant change and contribute difference. Under the Difference of Primary Charges rule "armory that consists of one group of charges alone on the field or accompanied only by a chief that may be charged ... does not conflict with similarly simple protected armory that significantly changes the type of all the primary charges." (LoAR 31 Dec 89, p. 28)

The issue then becomes whether a visual difference exists between the compass stars and the normal mullet. As the compass star is really a "Society charge", the rules on charges not used in period heraldry then apply: "A charge ... will be considered different in type if its shape in normal depiction is significantly different." (Type Changes, X.4.e). Applying this test, a compass star is clearly different from a normal mullet: not only is there a distinct difference in number of rays and a resulting difference in orientation, the "greater and lesser" arrangement of the rays creates a completely different sort of outline. (LoAR 31 Dec 89, p. 30)

As the peacock is normally as different from the standard cock as a wolf is from a lion (different head shape, distinctive tail, etc.) we have no hesitation in counting a difference between the two. (LoAR 21 Jan 90, p. 3)

[A demi-monster, issuant from a base] The question [is] whether the modification of the [monster] (its posture, position, attributes, etc.) constituted a clear difference. In this case, we were inclined to believe that it did: in this sort of design, the base is clearly secondary and the issuance of the demi-[monster] places the [monster] in a relative position much lower than would be the case if a regular [monster] were placed on this shield. This being the case, the [monster] does not really have the same visual weight as a regular [monster] segreant whose legs are obscured by a charge overall. (LoAR 21 Jan 90, p. 3)

There is one clear visual difference for the addition of the chief and another for the addition of the tertiaries. (LoAR 21 Jan 90, p. 5.)

Note that complete difference of primary charge cannot apply ... because the secondaries are flaunches. However, in this case there is one difference for type of charge (monster vs. vulture) and another for the posture of the animate charge (one is passant fesswise, wings addorsed and the other is vertical with wings displayed and inverted. This is true under the old rules as under the new. (LoAR 21 Jan 90, p. 7)

There are two differences in the secondary charges: type and number. Thus the two are clear under both old and new rules. (LoAR 21 Jan 90, p. 7)

There is no heraldic difference between a heron, a crane and a stork. (LoAR 21 Jan 90, p. 16)

As the change in position [of the secondary charges] derives entirely from the change in type of primary charge, there is only one difference: the change in type of primary charge. (LoAR 21 Jan 90, p. 17)

The difference between a lymphad and a galley is not significant. (LoAR 21 Jan 90, p. 17)

Examination of period and modern sources makes it clear that "fretty" is not a field treatment in the sense that term is used in the Society, but rather a "semy of frets" and as such contributes difference (X.4.b. Addition of Charges on the Field). Period treatises make it clear that the fretty was seen as placed upon the field in the same way that fleurs-de-lys or mullets or other charges semy were strewn.... Unlike "normal" field treatments, but like secondary charges, a "fretty" can be itself charged (Woodward, p. 97). (LoAR 25 Feb 90, p. 10)

"Fretty" must be considered to be a form of semy and thus entitled to add difference under section X.4.b of the Rules for Submission (Addition of Charges on the Field). (CL 13 May 90, p. 2)

The radical and clear-cut difference in position for a primary charge to a position definitely in sinister canton must be considered [a] difference. (Note that, as under the old rules, such positional changes must be considered on a case by case basis as they can be affected by the presence of other charges and other design elements. (LoAR 25 Feb 90, p. 3)

The addition of the secondary [chief] and the addition of the tertiary [charges on the chief] are separate actions and in mundane heraldry would reflect different levels of cadency. (LoAR 25 Feb 90, p. 6)

We are inclined to follow modern practise and allow difference for the conversion of indented to one of the rounded division lines, so long as the identifiability of the line of division is clearly maintained (i.e., as long as it is used in such a manner that it can be identified, as would be the case when applied to a primary charge). (LoAR 25 Feb 90, p. 6)

The new rules do not require complete difference of charge between the ... primary charges on simple coats, merely significant difference of primary charge, as defined in the section on Significant Armorial Differences. Under that section, it is clearly stated that charges will be considered different in type which were considered clearly separate in period heraldry. Rabbits or hares and lions were so considered. (LoAR 25 Feb 90, p. 14)

We would be inclined to grant difference between an ordinary invected and an ordinary engrailed on the grounds that the two were distinguished in period armoury and have traditionally been distinguished quite well in Society armoury. However, we cannot in conscience grant difference where the ordinary involves both lines of division. (LoAR 25 Feb 90, p. 19)

There is a difference for the number of charges and another difference for changing the posture of half the charges in the group [reversed]. The latter change is independent of the addition of the [charge]: the default posture for an added [charge] would have been facing to dexter. Therefore, it can be counted for difference. (LoAR 29 Apr 90, p. 4)

It is certainly a possibility to consider that the phrase "alone on the field" should be taken literally in the new rules and the significant difference of charge license apply even where the primary charges are themselves charged.... After much wrestling with this issue, we have come to the conclusion that the letter of the law in this case is also the spirit of the law and thus section X.2 [Difference of Primary Charges rule] of the new rules can apply to charged primaries. However, it must be stressed that the tertiary charges cannot significantly diminish the identifiability of the primaries in each case (by definition, both must be charged or else the two coats would be clear under the new rules). Also, it is presumed that the "visual conflict" rule may apply in cases such as that cited above where charges of the same type and tincture are modified with no other modifications. (LoAR 29 Apr 90, p. 5)

[On a roundel a charge vs. on a roundel a charge charged with a charge pierced] After considering [the] armoury for some time, we concluded that difference is derived from the tertiaries. There is clearly a difference for type of tertiary and another is present visually, whether one blazons it as the addition of another charge (as is done in the current blazon) or considers the argent charge in the same layer as the sable mullet as a change of more than half of the tincture of the tertiary. (LoAR 29 Apr 90, p. 6)

There was a strong feeling that adequate difference in type exists between a walrus head and a buck's head to apply section X.2 of the new rules and carry this clear. (LoAR 28 May 1990, p. 2)

Under the new rules, this is well clear of [Name] ... since the number and type of secondary charge are counted independently with no limit. (LoAR 28 May 90, p. 7)

A great deal of discussion [took place] as to the relationship between the estoile and mullet in period and Society heraldry. While [one commenter] presented some interesting evidence that the two charges may have been interchangeable in period heraldry, there is a long tradition of their being considered a differencing element in Society heraldry as well as modern English heraldry. This is reflected in the fact that both Society ordinaries and Papworth list mullets and estoiles as separate charges.... Under certain circumstances, if diminished enough in size or modified in a non-standard manner there might be a visual coincidence between mullets and estoiles that would create a confusion.... Otherwise, we had to agree with those who felt that enough visual difference exists between the two charges for the purposes of Society heraldry. (LoAR 28 May 90, p. 12)

While significant changes to the type of charge involved in a semy can produce difference under Part X of the rules, this must be taken in the context of the underlying assumption that the charges will be immediately identifiable and distinguishable from one another. (This is implicit in the test of charges' shapes in normal depiction being significantly different: "significant" means "having significance".)... In this case, the reduction in size reduces the identifiability of the two charges to the point where they both become primarily identified "crosses with cross bars of some sort at the ends of the arms". [Returned for conflict] (LoAR 28 May 90, p. 17)

Under the old rules we cannot see giving more than a very weak minor for the difference between "lozengy vert and Or" and "lozengy couped Or and vert". Certainly, it is not a clear visual difference under the new rules. (LoAR 28 May 90, p. 18)

[Per fess azure, mullety Or and purpure, crusilly Or vs. Purpure, crusilly Or] Since half the field and half the charges are changed, there are two visual differences. (LoAR 17 Jun 90, p. 1)

[Sea-dragon erect vs. wyvern, wings displayed] There is one difference for the field and another for the position of the monster. (LoAR 17 Jun 90, p. 1)

[Comparing two devices, each per fess embattled of the same tinctures with two charges in chief and another in base] It was the sense of the meeting that this was in fact clear ... since all of the charges on the field are significantly different. (LoAR 17 Jun 90, p. 4)

[One commenter] has shown there was apparently a difference noted by heralds in period between the stylized fleur-de-lys and the natural lily flower since the arms of Eton College contain both used in a cadency context. Under the new rules this is enough to determine that a difference of type may be granted, assuming no real possibility of confusion. (LoAR 17 Jun 90, p. 4)

There is difference for type of primary charge and another for position of primary charge here.... While posture is not generally counted between dissimilar items (e.g., a flower and a deer) in this case, the [dolphin] could be (at least in Society heraldry!) in a posture directly analogous to that of the [bird] displayed, if it were affronty. Since it is not, an additional difference for posture may be derived. (This is analogous to counting one difference for a charge being a horse, not a bird, and another for its being to dexter rather than to sinister, which we have fairly frequently done in the past.) (LoAR 17 Jun 90, p. 8)

The ermining in [Name]'s device is not addition of a strewn charge under the new rules (or the old for that matter) and does not add to the difference already derived from the difference in field. (LoAR 17 Jun 90, p. 9)

The usage "a sheaf" for "two [charges] in saltire surmounted by a third palewise" is a space-saving Society convention: it does not necessarily mean that the [charges] must be counted for difference as a single unit any more than a sword and a quill in saltire would be considered a single item. (LoAR 17 Jun 90, p. 13)

[Two towers connected by a bridge vs. a castle] When a submission for the same order was returned in February, 1988, "the strong resemblance of the conjoint charge to a standard depiction of a castle" was noted. (It is essentially two towers conjoined by an embattled wall with arches to base.) THere is no clear difference visually between a castle and the bridge on this submission. (LoAR 17 Jun 90, p. 18)

Difference, Technical vs. Visual

While technically clear because of the change of number and type of charges in chief (a major and a minor point) and the line of division (only a minor in effect because of the visual distraction of the wavy [line of division]), the visual resemblance is overwhelming. (LoAR 28 Dec 86, p. 20) [Submission was returned]

The visual similarities between the fret and the snowflake ... were so strong that we felt there was infringement. (LoAR 25 Jan 87, p. 27)

It may be a matter of debate whether the [annulo charge] or the charge within is the primary charge in either device.... A comparison of the emblazons makes it clear that there is a visual conflict since the dominant charge in both cases is the [same]. (LoAR 29 Mar 87, p. 16)

Upon carefully comparing the two emblazons once again we are compelled to the belief that a visual conflict definitely exists.... All the changes to the device are at the periphery of the field.... It is only after one has been compelled to note striking similarities between the two devices that one begins to process the differences. (LoAR 29 Mar 87, p. 17)

However one counts the "points", this [argent, an owl rising guardant, wings elevated and addorsed, maintaining an arrow bendwise sable] is strongly in visual conflict with [argent, a raven rising reguardant, wings disclosed proper, in the dexter claw a sword gules]. (LoAR 27 Sep 87, p. 12)

There was almost universal agreement amongst the commenters that [the] lengthy appeal that a side and a dexter tierce should be counted completely differently ignored the visual reality and the current rules of difference in the Society. (LoAR 23 Apr 88, p. 9)

"Visual conflict" is a one-way street: a device may be clear technically, yet come into conflict visually, but a device that conflicts technically may not be cleared of conflict solely because of apparent visual disparities. (LoAR 23 Apr 88, p. 21)

Discouraged Practice(s)

Note that the comments on discouraged practices say "A submission may incorporate one of these discouraged practices and still be marginally acceptable, but it costs the submittor the benefit of the doubt." This does not mean that particularly flagrant examples of any of the discouraged practices may not be in and of themselves grounds for return.... (LoAR 26 Oct 86, p. 11)

The precedent in this case appears to be the badge of Albert von Drechenveldt which was returned in December, 1985, for appearing to be a "no outhouses" symbol. Since the tincture of the ordinaries in that case was Or, evidently the use of gules is not a consideration. Note also that in the Discouraged practices section (X3) merely specified "the bend-plus-bordure ‘no X’ motif". That this is a design that well could have existed in period (and show cadency from a family [arms]) is rendered irrelevant by the problems raised by the essentially twentieth-century perceptions of the majority of the membership. My feeling, however, is that rendering the bend and bordure in different tinctures would remove the visual suggestion of the "no [charges]" sign and thus resolve the problem. (LoAR 25 Jan 87, p. 29)

We ... cannot accept the principle that in any situation one discouraged practice must be allowed under the wording of the current rules.... that was clearly not the intent of either Master Baldwin or of the College of Arms and the use of the subjunctive "may" throughout the introduction to the list of discouraged practices should be observed. (LoAR 29 Mar 87, p. 11)

Displayed

[Octopus tergiant displayed blazoned as "displayed"] The defining instance in Society heraldry (Geoffrey d’Ayr, "Azure, an octopus displayed argent." [badge]) indicates that this posture is correctly blazoned as displayed in Society heraldry. (LoAR Jul 88, p. 9)

Documentation

We would welcome documentation to the contrary. (LoAR 28 Dec 86, p. 6)

She enclosed a Xerox of her birth certificate: that's documentation! (LoAR 28 Feb 87, p. 6)

[The submittor] provides copious extracts from Burke to support the contention that members of the clan may use differenced versions of the chief's arms. Unfortunately, the examples support the original contention of the College that the use of the clearly cadenced arms ... implies a claim to kinship with the head of the clan, which is not permitted. The general feeling of the College was that an allusion to the Campbell arms or badges might be permissible with the simple name Campbell, but that the arms differenced went beyond the differences required for what Scots heraldry charmingly calls a "stranger in blood". (LoAR Aug 87, pp. 15-16)

As no documentation was provided for this form [of the charge], the submission must be returned. (LoAR 18 Sep 88, p. 16)

Insufficient documentation was provided to determine the grammatical accuracy of the bynames or their plausibility in the form [submitted]. Unfortunately, the intent of the submittor as to the intended meaning of the byname is unclear. (LoAR 18 Sep 88, p. 16)

Dolmen

No additional difference should be added for the difference in depiction between a dolmen of three uprights and the more usual trilithon: even as a primary charge, the viewer will register "dolmen" and assume that the depiction is artistic license. (LoAR 29 Mar 87, p. 11)

 


E

Eclipsing

Only a minor point of difference can be derived from the eclipsing of the sun, whether you consider it as using a different tincture for part of a charge (analogous to using Or for the wings of an argent pegasus) or a permutation of the main charge (it is analogous to the example of the charge pierced vs. unpierced). (LoAR 27 Sep 86, p. 9)

The usual depiction of a sun, or any rayed entity, eclipsed has a roundel placed on that entity with the edges of the roundel not extending beyond the point where the rays join one another, i.e., the eclipsing, which is generally of the same category as the field on which the charge is placed, does not break tincture because the edges of the underlying charge lie between the roundel and the field. (LoAR 24 Jan 88, p. 6)

Emblazon

What is registered is the emblazon, not the blazon; as the original sheets showed a [monster] couchant, rather than the clearly dormant [one] of the new emblazon sheets, this is technically a change of device rather than a blazon correction. A blazon correction exists when the original blazon does not correctly reflect the registered emblazon or the verbiage does not reflect the intent (e.g., for canting purposes) of the submittor and the new blazon will not be heraldically different from the registered emblazon: since a minor point [of difference] can be derived from a major charge which is dormant rather than couchant, this cannot be merely a blazon correction. (LoAR 25 Jan 87, p. 11)

We can only register what we see. (LoAR 29 Mar 87, p. 18)

There are several aspects of the submitted badge, as emblazoned (which is what we must judge by), which are non-period in style. (LoAR Aug 87, pp. 11-12) [Badge was returned]

We register the emblazon, not the blazon. (LoAR 24 Jan 88, p. 6)

While we do not penalize gentles for their artistic insufficiencies, we can only judge the relative position of charges, etc. from the emblazon they submit. On the submitted emblazon, the [charge] is not much larger than on the original returned submission (as [one commenter] put it a "token micro-enlargement"). (LoAR 26 Feb 89, p. 16)

While not denying that there could be legitimate differences in the depiction of a cross of ermine spots, there was a fairly strong focus in commentary on the fact that the College has to consider the submitted emblazon and that emblazon is almost identical to a cross fleury, save for the frou-frou at its center. (LoAR 31 Dec 89, p. 23)

Escarbuncle

Between an escarbuncle of six spokes and one of eight there is a distinction not a difference. (LoAR Aug 87, p. 12)

Estoile

There is not a full point of difference between [a] shooting star and an estoile. (LoAR 28 Feb 87, p. 17)

The primary charge was shown in the blazon on the letter of intent as an estoile, on the emblazon on the letter of intent as a compass star, and on the emblazon sheet provided by the submittor as [a billet surmounted by a lozenge fesswise surmounted by a lozenge palewise]. What the submittor has provided is four layers, even though the surmounting charges are of the same tincture.... It is not at all clear whether the submittor would prefer a compass star, an estoile (which would have six wavy rays) or neither of these. (LoAR 29 Mar 87, p. 15)

Given the traditional depiction of the mullet of six points in the Society, we felt that there was at least a minor point of difference from an estoile when primary charges were involved. (LoAR Jun 88, p. 1)

A great deal of discussion [was occasioned] as to the relationship between the estoile and mullet in period and Society heraldry. While [one commenter] presented some interesting evidence that the two charges may have been interchangeable in period heraldry, there is a long tradition of their being considered a differencing element in Society heraldry as well as modern English heraldry. This is reflected in the fact that both Society ordinaries and Papworth list mullets and estoiles as separate charges.... Under certain circumstances, if diminished enough in size or modified in a non-standard manner there might be a visual coincidence between mullets and estoiles that would create a confusion.... Otherwise, we had to agree with those who felt that enough visual difference exists between the two charges for the purposes of Society heraldry. (LoAR 28 May 90, p. 12)

 


F

Fess

[On a fess per fess sable and argent, a bar counter-compony argent and sable] The central charge, whether it be blazoned as a charged fess or a parted fess fimbriated, was too complex to readily identify "on the field". (LoAR Aug 87, p. 10)

Field

Society tradition does not protect the ermine field of Brittany unless it appears in the context of quartering or attached to a name which is strongly redolent of Brittany. (LoAR 28 Feb 87, p. 2)

We felt a fretty [field] must be considered in the same context as a field ermined. In the case of the fretty, even when drawn with very narrow lathes, a greater proportion of the field is covered than is the case for a field ermined. If a field sable, ermined Or (i.e., pean) specifically is permitted to be surmounted by a charge gules, it would seem unjust to deny the same license to a field sable, fretty Or. (LoAR 24 May 87, p. 11)

By the current rules a barry field may not consist of two colours (AR2a). (LoAR 26 Jul 87, p. 10)

While the principle that a plain (i.e., undivided) tinctured field was not protected was written into the old rules, this principle existed by precedent long before it was added to the rules. We do not feel that this precedent has been voided by the new rules. (LoAR 28 May 90, p. 6)

[Per fess azure, mullety Or and purpure, crusilly Or vs. Purpure, crusilly Or] Since half the field and half the charges are changed, there are two visual differences. (LoAR 17 Jun 90, p. 1)

The ermining in [Name]'s device is not addition of a strewn charge under the new rules (or the old for that matter) and does not add to the difference already derived from the difference in field. (LoAR 17 Jun 90, p. 9)

Field Division

See also, Lines of Division

Please ... draw the field with an even number of vertical divisions (i.e., add another pallet [metal] to the [color] field). Since the intent of the submittor was clear (and matched the blazon), it seemed unfair to penalize him because the artist who rendered the emblazon could not count.

NOTE: We considered at some length whether it would be proper to issue a general ruling rescinding the current ruling which makes fields divided of [an] even number of pallets or bars "neutral" where an odd number is not. After drawing up several examples of fields divided evenly and unevenly, it became clear that contrast of overlying ordinaries such as chiefs and bordures of the same class as the dominant tincture (i.e., the one with an even number of ordinaries on an uneven field) is considerably poorer when the field is unevenly divided. The distinction between the neutral field evenly divided and the "field plus ordinaries" which is unevenly divided is drawn from mundane heraldic tradition. It is, however, applied with far less vigor since the charges which come into conflict with the Rule of Tincture in the Society because of the distinction (the chief and the bordure) are largely exempt from that restriction in mundane heraldry. Our conclusion was that it would not be feasible to drop the even-uneven distinction at this time without also modifying Society practice with regard to a chief or a bordure to follow mundane precedent. We are not prepared to do that at this time. (LoAR 25 Jan 87, p. 9)

Please ... draw the [per bend sinister] field division properly issuant from the sinister chief corner of the shield. (LoAR 28 Feb 87, p. 11)

What is drawn ... is neither a proper pile inverted nor a field per chevron nor a true point pointed. If it were drawn properly as a pile inverted, there would not be space for the [charge] in chief. If properly drawn as a point pointed, there would be inadequate space for the three [tertiary charges] in pale. Even with a field per chevron the [charges] would be cramped for space except in a more usual one and two orientation (and even that would be tight!). (LoAR 28 Feb 87, p. 20)

Fields checky of two colours have not been permitted for some time. (LoAR 29 Mar 87, p. 16)

[Per chevron inverted] Please ... draw the field division properly with the chevron intersecting the sides of the field. (LoAR 24 May 87, p. 9)

While [it is correct] that the precise location of the per chevron line of division should be adapted to allow the charges to fill the field, it is probably necessary here to specify the line of division as being enhanced to obtain the relative sized of the three charges that the submittor clearly desires. (LoAR Aug 87, p. 4)

[Argent, a point pointed sable] In appearance this is a variant of a field "per chevron argent and sable". (LoAR 19 Dec 87, p. 19)

The letter of intent used an unnecessarily complex blazon for the field: "barry bendy bendy sinister". We have opted to use the blazon which Woodward uses for the arms of Gise [lozengy couped in fess]. (LoAR 19 Mar 88, p. 1)

[Per pale and per bend gules and sable] This is quarterly "within the meaning of the act" and thus is not entitled to the exemption granted quarterly under AR2.a. against the ban of fields party of two colors. In this case, where the [primary charge] obscures so much of the field, it is particularly difficult to determine the nature of the non-standard field division. (LoAR 23 Apr 88, p. 15)

[Pily bendy] [The submitting herald] errs in referring to the field as involving a field treatment. (LoAR 23 Apr 88, p. 19)

Note that this is not "chevronelly inverted", as submitted, since the field is not evenly divided of the two tinctures (i.e., there are four [metal] sections and three [color]). (LoAR 24 Dec 88, p. 7)

No evidence has been provided for simple coats with fields quarterly of three tinctures in period. (LoAR 26 Nov 89, p. 34)

The blazon stated the design to be "per fess rayonny enhanced". As many in the College noted, there is no such thing. What we have here is a chief, properly enlarged in the period manner to allow the harp to be clearly visible. (LoAR 21 Jan 90, p. 1)

[Three piles issuant from sinister] This is also a direct visual conflict with [Name]...: the period depiction of the per pale indented field showed large indentations reaching nearly to the edges of the shield such as appear here. (LoAR 21 Jan 90, p. 17)

The field is not a proper field "per chevron inverted" which would have the line of division issue from the sides of the shield, not its upper corners. (LoAR 25 Feb 90, p. 21)

The field division quarterly en equerre has been banned by the College as non-period since 1976 and no new evidence has been presented for its use prior to the late seventeenth century. (LoAR 25 Feb 90, p. 21)

Per pall of three colours was disallowed for poor contrast under the old rules. This has been explicitly stated in the new rules in section VIII.2.: "Elements evenly divided in three tinctures must have good contrast between two of their parts." (LoAR 29 Apr 90, p. 14)

Chequy of nine panes is, by definition, not evenly divided as to tincture: one tincture must be dominant and in this case it is [color]. This being the case, this must be treated as if it were a [color] dominant field, not an evenly divided (and hence neutral) field. (LoAR 29 Apr 90, p. 16)

On the correction letter this was reblazoned as "per pile", a field division that does not exist. (LoAR 29 Apr 90, p. 17)

The Society traditionally considers "chaussé" as a field division variant. (LoAR 28 May 90, p. 21)

Field Treatment

PRECEDENT: The field treatment "honeycombed", consisting of a variation on masoning in which the "cells" are equilateral hexagons, as in a honeycomb seen edge on, is hereby accepted for use in the Society. (LoAR 18 Sep 88, p. 8)

Fimbriation

The effect is of salamanders [in annulo] fimbriated rayonny and these are too complex to fimbriate. (LoAR 27 Sep 86 p. 11)

The plate fimbriated is poor style. (LoAR 30 Nov 86, p. 18)

However this is blazoned, in appearance it includes a fimbriated chief, which is not permitted for Society usage. (LoAR 28 Dec 86, p. 18) (See also: LoAR Aug 88, p. 23)

The compass stars, whether blazoned as fimbriated or voided, are predominantly [metal on a metal field]. This produces "thin line heraldry" which is not period in style and cannot be accepted. (LoAR 28 Feb 87, p. 17)

The rainbow is too complex a charge to fimbriate. (LoAR 28 Feb 87, p. 20)

Fountains really should not be fimbriated. As they should not be placed on either an azure or argent field, they especially should not be fimbriated in azure on an argent field. (LoAR 24 May 87, p. 13)

A compass star is too complex a charge to fimbriate. (LoAR 26 Jul 87, p. 9)

It did not seem that the fimbriation of the crescent was enough per se to cause the submission to be returned. However, it was felt that the fimbriation in an already relatively complex design ... added an unacceptable complexity to the design. (LoAR 27 Sep 87, p. 8)

This is "thin line heraldry": even a plain chief may not be fimbriated, fimbriating a chief wavy is even more a solecism. (LoAR 31 Oct 87, p. 13)

The fimbriated t’ai-ch’i constitutes "thin line heraldry." (LoAR 31 Oct 87, p. 13)

[Argent, a saltire vert between a pile and a pile inverted sable] The blazon does not really correctly describe the device as the sable is not really pile-shaped. The nearest blazon probably is "Per saltire sable and argent, a saltire vert, fimbriated argent...." However, this is not permissible since much of the "fimbriation" will fade into the argent portion of the field. [Submission returned] (LoAR 28 Nov 87, p. 11)

Fimbriation should never be reduced to the point that it becomes merely delineation and the ordinary fimbriated is in fact colour on colour! (LoAR 19 Mar 88, p. 3)

The "bordure" about the canton of augmentation is clearly there only to avoid breaking tincture and ill succeeds for it is so small as to be nearly invisible at any distance and in any other context would be decried as "thin line heraldry". (LoAR 23 Apr 88, p. 16)

[A lozenge throughout fimbriated, charged with, among others, a gout fimbriated] The excessive use of fimbriation [is] a non-period feature of the device: the lozenge throughout is equivalent to "vetu" and that should never be fimbriated. (LoAR 23 Apr 88, p. 16)

[Two piles issuant from base, fimbriated] Blazoned with two piles, they [are] neither truly voided nor truly fimbriated and, in either case, constituted "thin line heraldry". (LoAR 23 Apr 88, p. 21)

The "voiding" or "fimbriating" of a bordure is not permitted. (LoAR 29 May 88, p. 18)

[A] hammer is too complex a charge to fimbriate. (LoAR 29 May 88, p. 21)

[A pile bendwise sinister fimbriated] The fimbriation here is naught but "thin line heraldry" and it is difficult to see how it could be drawn with proper thickness without diminishing the identifiability of the [overall charge]. (LoAR Jun 88, p. 14)

[A cross crosslet fitchy fimbriated] The cross here ... is really "thin line heraldry": the [color cross] has so little contrast with the [color] field that the [metal] fimbriation is all that delineates the cross. (LoAR Jun 88, p. 15)

Fimbriated gores have been banned as excessive "thin line heraldry" since August, 1983. (LoAR Jul 88, p. 18)

The fimbriation of the cross on the [primary] is excessive. (LoAR Aug 88, p. 19)

[The appeal stated] that there is a difference between a [charge] fimbriated and one voided because in the case of fimbriation the metal here would be narrower than is the case.... Even if period blazon practice were reflected in this distinction, if one had to use calipers to tell whether an ordinary was fimbriated or voided, then no difference could be derived from the issue and there is no point to quibbling over blazon. (LoAR 18 Sep 88, p. 16)

The fimbriation of the book on the chief [is] excessive. (LoAR 30 Oct 88, p. 17)

Although we must admit that bordures of flame have been registered before, ... what is depicted on the emblazon is in fact a bordure fimbriated (actually a bordure rayonny gules, fimbriated Or). It seem inconsistent to ban fimbriated bordures as non-period practice when they are plain and not to do so when they are more complex. Moreover, the additional fimbriation on of the compass star here can only add to the impression of "thin line" heraldry. (LoAR 27 Nov 88, p. 26)

While there was some disagreement in the College on the legitimacy of fimbriating a cross crosslet, there was a considerable body of thought which held that this badge was covered by the "Grandfather Clause" since it was a simplification of one previously registered to the submittor.... After some soul-searching, we were compelled to agree. (LoAR 24 Dec 88, p. 2)

In the cover letter to the March letter of acceptances and returns, it was ruled that fimbriation and voiding would not be considered excessive if it were applied to a "plain ordinary" placed in the center of the shield. In this case the [latin cross in sinister chief] is plain enough, but is visually peripheral and, taken with the other anomalies [on this submission], pushes this submission over the edge of acceptable style. (LoAR 21 May 89, p. 15)

Fimbriation with [a] tincture of the [divided] field is not permitted. (LoAR 21 May 89, p. 18)

Fimbriation of the small and peripheral crescent [is] excessive, particularly for a badge. (LoAR 21 May 89, p. 23)

The fimbriated charged lozenge gives the appearance of a lozenge ... with a [charge] and a bordure ... which would too greatly resemble arms of pretense under AR10d. (LoAR 21 May 89, p. 23)

For a long time, we have banned fimbriated chiefs (particularly where the chief is the same tincture as the field!) and the reblazon of this visual effect to consider it a "bar enhanced", etc., does not ameliorate the visual effect. (LoAR 30 Jul 89, p. 14)

While a considerable number of commentors appeared to feel that the heart was a "simple" enough charge to fimbriate, this falls in conflict with previous commentary which favoured limiting the use of fimbriation to ordinaries at the center of the field (for instance, in opposing the use of fimbriated crescents). While we grant that the heart is an essentially simple charge, the fimbriation here adds a degree of complexity that is inappropriate for a badge, diminishing as it does the immediacy of the identifiability of the gules heart. (LoAR 27 Aug 89, p. 21)

While the degree of commentary on the issue of fimbriating and voiding complex ordinaries has not really been adequate to allow a clear-cut general precedent, there does seem to be a sort of queasy acceptance of such designs as this when the fimbriation gives the appearance of a diminutive of an ordinary and there are a limited number of tinctures involved. (LoAR 30 Sep 89, p. 2)

Martlets are too complex to be voided or fimbriated. (LoAR 26 Nov 89, p. 14)

For the purposes of the rule on Armorial Identifiability, any ordinary placed at the center of the shield (e.g., a pale, pall, bend, fess, etc.) may be fimbriated, even if it uses a complex line of division, provided that the identifiability of the charge and the line of division are not significantly reduced by the voiding or fimbriation or any other element of the design (e.g., the placement of superimposed charges). (LoAR 26 Nov 89, p. 23) (See also: CL 20 May 89, p. 3)

A horse certainly is too complex an image to fimbriate under either set of rules. (LoAR 26 Nov 89, p. 35)

We have to agree with those who felt that the modification of tincture of fimbriation should contribute no difference here. Indeed, in view of the minimal visual impact of fimbriation, even when drawn properly, it is very difficult to imagine a situation where the addition of fimbriation or the change of the tincture of fimbriation should contribute to difference. (LoAR 26 Nov 89, p. 40)

The cloves were too complex a charge to void (or chase or fimbriate, depending on how you were looking at the cloves).... They become classic "thin-line heraldry" when voided. This is a problem not only under the old rules (AR6c, Complexity Limit) but also under the new (Armorial Identifiability, VIII.3: "Voiding and fimbriation may only be used with simple geometric charges placed in the center of the design."). (LoAR 31 Dec 89, p. 22)

Long-standing Society precedent disallows fimbriation or voiding of gores. (LoAR 28 May 90, p. 21)

The voiding/fimbriation of the mullet unacceptably diminished its identifiability and, taken with its peripheral position, ... was just not period style. (LoAR 17 Jun 90, p. 15)

First Principles

When an individual views two devices, apart or together, they go through several phases in processing the information.... The observer usually registers first the colour of the field, usually in terms of metal versus colour, then if it is divided and of what tinctures and only then by what type of line of partition, if one is present. Then the tincture of the charge closest to the center of the device is processed (... there is quite a bit of evidence that [our ancestors] looks at the type of central charge before its colour and a large minority of the populace do that as well). Again, the tincture recognition is usually a two stage thing: first the category and then the specific tincture. Then the overall type of central charge is determined, followed by its number and posture.... Only then will perception pass to the "peripheral" secondary charges, moving form center out and from top to bottom and repeating the tincture, type, number/posture process until all charges which lie directly on the field have been "digested". Then and only then normally does the eye return to the center of the device to consider tertiary charges....

In practice, this means that two devices which are strongly similar in the center will be perceived as being more alike than two devices which differ strongly in the center but are identical on the periphery.... Practically speaking, changes to tertiaries on an ordinary in the center of a device will contribute considerably greater visual difference than tertiaries on a charge which is itself on the periphery.

It must be conceded that these degrees of difference cannot be totally quantified and it is extremely dubious whether they should be.... The "grey areas" of visual conflict often seem to occur more frequently in the more complex the device in its processing ...: so much is required in the digestion and/or so unusual are the patterns that each change has less cumulative effect. It is unavoidable that there will be "judgement calls" in such cases. When this is the case, the final determinant will be the actual emblazons compared by Laurel and anyone else at the meeting. (CL 18 May 87, pp. 4-5)

1. All names and armoury registered for use in the Society shall be compatible with the mediaeval environment created by the Society.

2. No name or armoury shall be registered which is offensive to a significant proportion of the Society membership, whether the offensiveness is innate, contextual, or derives from an expressed or implied claim on the part of the submittor to be someone or something that he/she is not.

NOTE: An example of innate offensiveness might be the scatological or obscene. Contextual offensiveness involves that which is offensive because of its associations or context (e.g., a Swastika). Offensiveness through presumption might involve an expressed or implied claim to be more (or less) than is actually the case (e.g., a duke, a Norse god, Harald Hardraada, etc.).

3. Any submission, once registered, is not subject to review or revocation of the registration, even if later research demonstrates the original registration was made in error. (CL 22 Jul 87, p. 4)

I have always felt that Society heralds, like their period predecessors, were adequately numerate to count above six. While it is certainly legitimate to depict a field semy with no more than seven charges, it is clear that period heraldry acknowledged up to nine or ten charges set in a standard arrangement without considering them a semy (indeed, the fact of the standard arrangement, e.g., four, three, two and one, may be the criterion for selecting a blazon of ten X rather than semy of X). (LoAR 31 Oct 87, p. 2)

Fish

[Carp embowed vs. dolphin embowed] The fish on both pieces of armoury are virtually identical. (LoAR Aug 87, p. 10)

Fish - Crab

The visual similarities between the crab and the scorpion create enough visual confusion that the two cannot be considered clear. (LoAR 25 Jan 87, p. 16-17)

Fish - Dolphin

[A pall between a dolphin uriant, a dolphin hauriant and a crescent] The differences in the position of the dolphins make them visually different charges. (LoAR 25 Jan 87, p. 25)

[Carp embowed vs. dolphin embowed] The fish on both pieces of armoury are virtually identical. (LoAR Aug 87, p. 10)

[Or, two bottlenosed dolphins proper] The dolphins are grey (i.e., argent) which breaks tincture by being placed on the metal field. (LoAR 29 May 88, p. 20)

Fish - Octopus

[Octopus tergiant displayed blazoned as "displayed"] The defining instance in Society heraldry (Geoffrey d’Ayr, "Azure, an octopus displayed argent." [badge]) indicates that this posture is correctly blazoned as displayed in Society heraldry. (LoAR Jul 88, p. 9)

Flames

There is a precedent in Society usage for the unusual bordure [of flames proper] with the device of [Name] ("[Tincture], a bordure of flames proper") (LoAR 28 Dec 86, p. 2)

What appeared on the emblazon sheet were not flames proper. It was a base of flames Or, with the line of delineation from the field gules (it was not thick enough to call it fimbriation). This is an improper use of proper. (LoAR 29 Mar 87, pp. 15-16)

After much consideration (and several examinations of the emblazon), there seemed to be insufficient contrast between the argent blade of the sword and the Or flames that surround it. Both the blade and the flames are major design elements and, unfortunately, the argent fades into the Or to such an extent that the sword appears to be "bladed of flames Or: making the flames proper would resolve the problem. (LoAR 26 Apr 87, p. 11)

There is a standing precedent against the use of bordures of flame. (LoAR 25 Feb 90, p. 18)

The bordure of flame does not even stand as the only anomaly, but is accompanied by the three swords proper with enflamed blades in an unusual position.... The general effect is not period style under either the old rules or the new. (LoAR 25 Feb 90, p. 18)

Flaunch

The interlacing of the flaunches by the [charge] is not period style and is, in and of itself, too great an anomaly to allow. Additionally, if the [charge] is considered the primary charge, it breaks tincture where it overlies the ... field. If it is considered mainly a tertiary charge, the device is insufficiently differenced [from another device with the same field and flaunch tinctures). (LoAR 28 Dec 86, p. 14)

It was ruled some five years ago that flaunches should not be surmounted by charges (Wilhelm von Schlüssel, April, 1983) and we see no reason to reverse that ruling. (LoAR 23 Apr 88, p. 16) (See also: LoAR 21 May 89, p. 24; LoAR 27 Aug 89, p. 20)

Although the flaunches were blazoned on the letter of intent as "[color] voided" they are in fact thin partial arcs of [color] placed on [the metal] field: an almost classic instance of "thin line heraldry". In fact, ... the voiding or fimbriating of flaunches has been banned since September, 1981: "Flaunches voided and flaunches cotised are both non-period..." (LoAR 29 May 88, p. 20)

Flaunches are by definition visually more complex than a bordure or chief. (LoAR 26 Mar 89, p. 17)

Fleam

While the fleam is a particularly appropriate charge for those with a medical background, it is not so closely associated with medics that it should be reserved. (LoAR 26 Feb 89, p. 13)

Flower

Period heraldry certainly does distinguish between an iris or fleur-de-lys and a thistle! (LoAR 17 Jun 90, p. 4)

[One commenter] has shown there was apparently a difference noted by heralds in period between the stylized fleur-de-lys and the natural lily flower since the arms of Eton College contain both used in a cadency context. Under the new rules this is enough to determine that a difference of type may be granted, assuming no real possibility of confusion. (LoAR 17 Jun 90, p. 4)

Flower - Fleur-de-lys

[Experience] seems to indicate that modern sensibilities, as much as period perceptions, would consider the fleur-de-lys completely different from any variant of human or beast head. (LoAR 31 Oct 87, p. 7)

Flower - Foil

See also, Cinquefoil

[A cinquefoil within and conjoined to five cinquefoils in annulo] The possibility of confusion between this lovely, but visually confusing, design and a snowflake is very strong. (LoAR 29 Mar 87, p. 18)

Flower - Rose

The red rose of Lancaster, like the white rose of York, deserves extra protection versus Society badges which should differ by more than one major point from this particularly famous royal badge. (LoAR 28 Dec 86, p. 14)

The [roses] in chief actually appear to be much closer to "roses proper, fimbriated argent" and are uncomfortably close to the "Tudor rose". (LoAR 26 Apr 87, p. 9)

The partial change in the tincture of the [tertiary] roses from seeded sable, barbed argent to seeded and barbed gules is negligible. (LoAR 24 May 87, p. 17)

By tradition the Society has distinguished between the heraldic rose and the natural rose and, lacking any specific evidence to the contrary we must assume that the rose on the [conflicting] arms was the heraldic rose which is quite different in appearance from the natural flower. (LoAR 21 Feb 88, p. 8)

There is no compelling reason to consider the six-petalled rose with alternating argent and gules petals a legitimate variant of the (restricted) Tudor rose. While it is true that the Tudor rose did appear in period divided per pale and (more rarely) quarterly, we could find no instance of its appearing as a six-petalled flower with alternating white and red petals. (LoAR 18 Sep 88, p. 19)

The almond flower is very similar to the heraldic rose in appearance. (LoAR 27 Aug 89, p. 28)

The standing precedent in the College (stated by Baldwin of Erebor, February, 1985) dictates that the name Corwin may not be used in conjunction with roses of any tincture. (LoAR 26 Nov 89, p. 35)

While we appreciate the comments of [commenters] on the interchangeability of the cinquefoil and the heraldic rose in the early period..., it is a fact that the Society has for lang and lang distinguished between them, as a glance at the Armorial or even the Pictorial Dictionary ... will reveal. (Now fraises and cinquefoils, on the other hand.) (LoAR 31 Dec 89, p. 10)

[A chaplet of roses] While [the submitting herald] noted that the blazon had been selected specifically to distinguish it from the wreath of roses reserved to Queens and Ladies of the Rose, this is a distinction rather than a difference. Not only are chaplets regularly listed under "wreath", but several pieces of royal armoury have the wreath blazoned as a chaplet (most notably that of the Queen of the Middle).... As a territorial princess is not eligible to become a member of the Order of the Rose on the basis of her service to her principality, she may not use the wreath of roses (however blazoned) on her official or personal armoury. (LoAR 29 Apr 90, p. 15)

Flower - Thistle

[A three-headed thistle proper flowered gules vs. a three-headed thistle proper flowered purpure] So unusual is the tricapitate thistle that the arrangement overrides any minor difference added by changing the tincture of part of the thistle to purpure. Note also that this change of tincture is severely weakened because of the small portion of the plant affected and the indifference with which heads gules and heads purpure are interchanged in Scots herald (in this context many period Scotsmen seem not to have perceived any difference between the two tinctures). (LoAR 24 May 87, p. 18) (See also: LoAR 24 May 87, p. 16)

This depiction [of two thistles] which shows a flower alternating with each leaf on a branch similar to a laurel branch has no precedent in period or Society heraldry. (LoAR 27 Aug 89, p. 25)

Ford

The ford is not drawn properly but rather as a "base wavy azure charged with four barrulets wavy argent." (LoAR 28 Nov 87, p. 10)

Forms

No blazon appeared on the emblazon forms to verify whether the coloration of the [charge] was intentional or an omission. All paperwork should include the proposed blazon on the forms! (LoAR 28 Feb 87, p. 25)

I was extremely distressed by the number of submissions with acceptable armoury that I was compelled to return in their entirety ... because the submission forms specifically stated that no changes, however minor, could be made to the spelling or grammar of the name. Unless there is some indication that a holding name would be acceptable, I am compelled to take statements that no changes may be made to the name literally and return the submission as a whole.... There are several options open to consulting heralds to resolve this situation: advise submittors not to prohibit changes to the name, request them to state on the forms if a holding name is acceptable, or to ... add a line to the forms requesting the submittor to indicate if formation of a holding name is not acceptable. Of all the options, the latter is probably the most satisfactory and I heartily recommend it to all Kingdoms. (I hate returning a beautiful armorial submission because of technical problems with the name!) (CL 20 Mar 87, p. 2)

Fountain

Note that what was drawn on the emblazon was not a fountain which is, by definition, composed of an equal number of bars wavy (usually six). However, ... we had to assume that a fountain was indeed intended and, under Rules AR1c, may not be placed on either an azure or an argent field: the visual effect is that of three barrulets wavy couped azure floating isolated on the argent field. (LoAR 29 Mar 87, p. 18)

Fountains really should not be fimbriated. As they should not be placed on either an azure or argent field, they especially should not be fimbriated in azure on an argent field. (LoAR 24 May 87, p. 13)

[Sable primary, charged with a fountain] Were the fountain to be drawn properly (on the emblazon it is a plate charged with three barrulets wavy azure), it would not appear at all round since the azure tends to fade into the sable. (LoAR 19 Mar 88, p. 18)

[A bordure, semy of fountains] The fountains are banned because of the ban on charges semy which are fimbriated, proper, fur or divided tinctures (AR1.c). (LoAR 29 May 88, p. 21)

Frame

In period a delf pierced would not ... serve as a "frame" for another charge. However, ... the "frame" effect [has] been previously established in Society usage for mascles, which are no more complex visually, so it would appear pedantic to object to such a usage here. (LoAR 26 Apr 87, p. 1)

The use of a voided charge as a frame for another charge, whether or not that other charge is the primary charge is more than a trifle eccentric by mundane standards, period or modern, but it has been done frequently [enough] in Society heraldry to be accepted if the design is simple as it is here. (LoAR Aug 87, p. 6)

Fret

After comparing the emblazons and considering the matter at some length, we concluded that ... the visual similarities between the fret and the snowflake ... were so strong that we felt there was infringement. (LoAR 25 Jan 87, p. 27)

This was originally returned ... because ... the charges were difficult to recognize because of their fretting. Given the items that Society heraldry has fretted in the past, including "six two-pronged forks", fretting two axes seems reasonable. (LoAR 26 Apr 87, p. 6) [Device registered]

Fretty

We felt a fretty must be considered in the same context as a field ermined. In the case of the fretty, even when drawn with very narrow lathes, a greater proportion of the field is covered than is the case for a field ermined. If a field sable, ermined Or (i.e., pean) specifically is permitted to be surmounted by a charge gules, it would seem unjust to deny the same license to a field sable, fretty Or. (LoAR 24 May 87, p. 11)

[Or, fretty of a color, a charge argent] There is insufficient contrast between the [charge] and the field which is predominantly Or. (LoAR 29 May 88, p. 25)

[Gules, fretty Or, a charge sable] The sable [charge] on the essentially gules field is colour on colour. (LoAR 29 May 88, p. 26)

Although the letter blazoned the "decoration" of the chief as "five saltires", the visual effect is one of the standard depictions of a chief fretty and is more simply blazoned in this manner. (LoAR 22 Oct 89, p. 7)

Examination of period and modern sources makes it clear that "fretty" is not a field treatment in the sense that term is used in the Society, but rather a "semy of frets" and as such contributes difference (X.4.b. Addition of Charges on the Field). Period treatises make it clear that the fretty was seen as placed upon the field in the same way that fleurs-de-lys or mullets or other charges semy were strewn.... Unlike "normal" field treatments, but like secondary charges, a "fretty" can be itself charged (Woodward, p. 97). (LoAR 25 Feb 90, p. 10)

"Fretty" must be considered to be a form of semy and thus entitled to add difference under section X.4.b of the Rules for Submission (Addition of Charges on the Field). (CL 13 May 90, p. 2)

A number of early rolls of arms show a common alternation in blazon (and emblazon) between what is now commonly blazoned as "fretty" and "a fret" indicating the change in number of "frettings" was seen as a form of generating cadency. (LoAR 25 Feb 90, p. 10)

Fruit - Apple

The name Idunn may not be used with apples any more than Rhiannon may be used with horses. (LoAR 27 Sep 87, p. 11)

Fur

Traditionally, we have considered a fur a "tincture" for the purposes of counting difference. (LoAR 23 Apr 88, p. 5)

Fur - Ermine and Ermine Variants

Ermine furs are not "neutral" in Society heraldry, counter-ermine is classed as a dark tincture. (LoAR 29 Mar 87, p. 21) (See also: LoAR 23 Apr 88, p. 16; LoAR Aug 88, p. 17)

Since [the submittor] apparently wants specifically three ermine spots, it would not be appropriate to modify the lower portion of the field to semy (which is by definition sans nombre). (LoAR 24 May 87, p. 2)

The ban on erminites for Society use, which is one of the oldest precedents in the Society (dating back nearly twenty years to Harold Breakstone in 1970), is well founded on the absence of this ermine variant in period sources and should continue. (LoAR 21 May 89, p. 23)

We do not normally consider the ermine spots of the fur [to be] tertiary charges "within the meaning of the act". (LoAR 27 Aug 89, p. 27)

[The submitting herald] is correct when he notes that later period heraldry did place ermine on Or or, more commonly, Or on ermine. Most of the examples cited were granted or confirmed or appeared in rolls from the Tudor period and there is some doubt as to whether the use of ermined furs as a generally neutral colour was all that common in period. Be that as it may, long since the College of Arms decided that the interests of the Society, particularly its need for heraldry recognisable in battle conditions in poor weather or across a large encampment required somewhat higher standards of contrast than prevail in contemporary mundane heraldry. This decision was reviewed and discussed at some length in the course of the rules discussion and there was considerable support for strengthening the requirements for contrast, not weakening them. (LoAR 31 Dec 89, p. 24)

The ermining in [Name]'s device is not addition of a strewn charge under the new rules (or the old for that matter) and does not add to the difference already derived from the difference in field. (LoAR 17 Jun 90, p. 9)

 


G

Gargoyle

An examination of a number of mundane sources indicates that there does not seem to be a clearly defined depiction for a "gargoyle" in heraldry, despite the notes in the Pictorial Dictionary (p. 59). (LoAR 27 Aug 89, p. 21)

Gondola

Evidence for period use of the gondola prow in a fixed form ... has convinced us that the gondola prow is identifiable as such and therefore legitimate for use in the Society. (LoAR 24 Dec 88, p. 3)

Gore and Gusset

Although [the principal herald] blazoned the gussets as "debased", long Society precedent indicates there is no such heraldic charge (gussets themselves are a bit controversial as a period charge). (LoAR 19 Dec 87, p. 19)

The distinction between the gore and gusset seems to be more a distinction than a difference and many heraldic authors (for example, Woodward, p. 689) consider the two to be the same charge. (LoAR 26 Mar 89, p. 15)

The ... charges overlying the gore are a practice that has previously been disallowed: neither flaunches nor gores seem to have been surmounted in this manner in period. (LoAR 21 May 89, p. 24)

[Two gores overall] The gores give a non-period effect of paper shades drawn away from a diorama or diptych and are extremely three dimensional in effect. (LoAR 18 Jun 89, p. 13)

[Two different charges and a gore] While [a commenter] is correct that the gore is usually considered by definition a secondary charge since it issues from the flanks of the shield, in spirit this is "slot machine heraldry". (LoAR 31 Dec 89, p. 21)

Gores by definition are limited to two in number and rest in the flanks of a field. Also, long-standing Society precedent disallows fimbriation or voiding of gores. (LoAR 28 May 90, p. 21)

[Argent, two gussets gules vs. Gules, a pall argent] Regrettably, this is in conflict.... The removal of the inverted triangular portion of the field from the top of the device does not create enough visual difference to carry the two devices truly clear. (LoAR 17 Jun 90, p. 17)

Grandfather Clause

The lower portion of the badge is derived directly from the device of [one of the two submittors], passed prior to the current ban on natural lightning flashes, and so we felt it should be covered by the "Grandfather Clause". (LoAR 28 Dec 86, p. 1) (See also: LoAR 28 Feb 87, p. 20)

There seemed to be some confusion on the part of some commentors between the "Hardship Clause" and the "Grandfather Clause". The former is designed to aid submittors who have through no fault of their own had submissions delayed for a period of time in which the rules have changed.... The Grandfather Clause, on the other hand, protects from future rules changes armory which has already been registered. Whatever my personal feelings on the subject, there have been many rulings in the past to indicate that, where a badge uses the primary charge(s) from a device which would not be licit were they submitted for the first time today, the badge gains an associative protection under the Grandfather Clause. (LoAR 28 Feb 87, p. 20)

[Quarterly Or and vert, in bend sinister a mullet of four points within a laurel wreath and a castle, all Or] This simply adds the laurel wreath to their already registered badge. [The principal herald] has invoked the "Grandfather Clause" and, while we do not feel comfortable in accepting the obvious marshalling here, we have to agree that it would not be consistent or just for us to return the device in this case.... Given the original registration, we have no choice but to accept the modification proposed here. (LoAR 19 Dec 87, p. 3)

[The] name was registered originally in 1973.... It would not pass today. However, it is our feeling that the name as such is grandfathered and the change to make it more grammatical is "offense neutral". (LoAR Jun 88, P. 3)

While the locative would not normally pass under the current rules, there is overwhelming precedent for allowing spouses and children of those with registered bynames to use those bynames, even if they are no longer "legal". (LoAR Aug 88, p. 15)

While there was some disagreement in the College on the legitimacy of fimbriating a cross crosslet, there was a considerable body of thought which held that this badge was covered by the "Grandfather Clause" since it was a simplification of one previously registered to the submittor.... After some soul-searching, we were compelled to agree. (LoAR 24 Dec 88, p. 2)

The "Grandfather Clause" ... serves two functions. It guarantees to a submittor that, once his name or armory has been registered, it cannot be "unregistered" because of changes in the rules which may occur subsequent to that registration.... As an extension of this principle, [it] has also come to mean that a person whose registered name and/or armoury exists in contravention of the current stylistic rules may register new items which contain all or part of the previously registered material, even though the submissions would not be acceptable were they wholly submitted for the first time today. This permission has sometimes been extended to the immediate family (typically the spouse or offspring) of the original registrant.... However, the "Grandfather Clause" does NOT insulate a submission involving grandfathered material against conflict.... Note that the standards for conflict which will be applied are always the current standards unless the submission is being made specifically under the terms of a "grace period" declared after a change in conflict standards. The "Grandfather Clause" may only be used to exempt submissions in whole or in part from current standards of style. (CL 27 Mar 89, pp. 1-2)

Under both the old and new rules, this [voided complex] charge is "grandfathered" since it derives directly from her registered device. (LoAR 26 Nov 89, p. 14)

Note that the change is merely to translate her already registered (and now unregisterable) epithet into Norse. This is already registered to her and the translation is less immediately problematic for most members of the Society. Therefore, it seems that this is a reasonable use of the Grandfather Clause. Certainly, it has been similarly interpreted in the past. (LoAR 31 Dec 89, p. 12)

Gun

[Flintlock pistol] The pistol is period (just...). (LoAR Jul 88, p. 1)

Gyronny

In referring to an "off-center" gyronny in [a] return ... in February, 1982, Master Wilhelm noted "this sort of division is not heraldic". Whilst this referred to a gyronny of two colours, the general principle holds true. (LoAR 26 Oct 86, pp. 9-10)

Gyronny from any point other than the center of a field or charge is definitely an anomaly, that is the reason that the visual complexity added by the use of colours has been limited (nowhere was it ever claimed that gyronny from the edge per se is "banned").... We are still of the opinion that the use of gyronny from the edge on charges is extremely poor style. (LoAR 29 Mar 87, p. 3)

Gyronny normally has one of its lines directly in fess. (LoAR 29 Mar 87, p. 7)

A charge gyronny of two metals is not registerable under either the old rules or the new. (LoAR 25 Feb 90, p. 22)

 


H

Hand and Gauntlet

PRECEDENT: In view of its strong suggestiveness of a "Hand of Glory", a hand appaumy or averse enflamed may not be used as a charge in Society heraldry. (LoAR 26 Apr 87, p. 9)

No difference can really be derived from a sinister hand versus a dexter hand. (LoAR 18 Jun 89, p. 9)

Hardship Clause

There seemed to be some confusion on the part of some commentors between the "Hardship Clause" and the "Grandfather Clause". The former is designed to aid submittors who have through no fault of their own had submissions delayed for a period of time in which the rules have changed. There is normally a time limit for such submissions to legitimately claim leniency under this clause. The Grandfather Clause, on the other hand, protects from future rules changes armory which has already been registered. (LoAR 28 Feb 87, p. 20)

Convincing evidence was provided ... that the submittor has been making a good faith effort to register this submission since the tenure of Mistress Karina, efforts frustrated by a series of accidents and losses to the extent that we feel the "hardship clause" should apply. (LoAR 19 Dec 87, p. 5)

The "hardship case" argument is really not applicable here. The intent of that lenience was to allow for heraldic misfeasance or non-feasance and the rules specifically state that it applies only where "a submission may unreasonably be delayed in processing, through no fault of the submitter". In this case, the primary reason for non-submission seems to have been not heraldic error but internal disagreement on the appropriate name for the Order. (LoAR Jun 88, p. 17)

Head

Note that the unicorn's head cabossed is rather poor style; in this posture the distinguishing features of the unicorn's head are nearly unidentifiable. (LoAR 26 Oct 86, p. 7)

The head of a minotaur is a bull's head and cannot be distinguished as a minotaur without the remainder of the creature. (LoAR 25 Jan 87, p. 18)

The default for a cat's head is not cabossed. (LoAR Aug 87, p. 2)

There is a clear point of difference for the differences of posture, but the double-heads are not sufficiently visible against the peacock's tail to add the necessary extra difference. (LoAR Aug 87, p. 14)

[Experience] seems to indicate that modern sensibilities, as much as period perceptions, would consider the fleur-de-lys completely different from any variant of human or beast head. (LoAR 31 Oct 87, p. 7)

The "proper" tincture for a boar's head is brown. (LoAR 21 Feb 88, p. 2)

A point and a half cannot be derived for the difference in type of two heads. (LoAR Jul 88, p. 19)

While the rules allow a minor for the difference between a head couped and a head erased, a comparison of the two emblazons indicated that the primary differences of type between the wolf's head and the alaunt's head here were that the ears were different (one was pricked and the other floppy) and that the wolf's head was open to show the fangs. That did not seem enough to difference the two under our current rules. (LoAR Jul 88, p. 19)

There was a strong feeling that adequate difference in type exists between a walrus head and a buck's head to apply section X.2 of the new rules and carry this clear. (LoAR 28 May 1990, p. 2)

Horn

The submittor's own documentation casts serious doubt on the use of the earhorn prior to the seventeenth century and shows such a variety of forms that no one single form could reasonably be deduced. (LoAR 30 Oct 88, p. 3)

Hourglass

After much soul-searching and a comparison of the emblazons, we decided that the shapes are too similar for complete difference of charge to exist between a goblet and an hourglass ... under both the old rules and the new. The visual assonance is very clear: the only difference between the two devices with the hourglass drawn in one of its standard Society depictions (i.e., without the posts) is the balance and "fatness" of the lower portion of the goblet. (LoAR 26 Nov 89, p. 36)

Human Figure

It might be suggested to the submittor that the style and posture of the human figure [courant] is not really period. (LoAR 29 Mar 87, p. 15)

The human charge issuant from the line of division is a distinctly anomalous usage. [Returned for this and other problems] (LoAR 19 Mar 88, p. 19)

 


I

Identifiability

The contrast was so poor between the argent [charge] and Or ["markings"] of the [charge] that it was impossible for most to identify clearly what it was at any distance. Although this may be a "[charge] proper", it does not serve well for identification. Perhaps the submittor would consider delineating the identifying markings in a colour? (LoAR 27 Sep 86, p. 10)

The [copper charges proper], whose default tincture must be heraldically Or, are metal on metal because of their position [against argent and Or primary charge], to the extent that they were unidentifiable at any distance. (LoAR 27 Sep 86, p. 14)

The charge combination in chief [a cross argent surmounting four hearts in cross Or] is unidentifiable at any distance. The cross ... is metal on metal in fact and disappears into the Or to such an extent that it cannot be determined what it is. The hearts are so ill-defined ... (and so obscured by the overlying charge) that at first glance they appear to be some sort of obscure four petalled rose. (LoAR 25 Jan 87, p. 15)

The contrast between the sable [Charge] and the azure portion of the [per bend] field was so poor that the primary charge was unidentifiable, even at a distance of a foot. We would suggest that the submittor modify the tincture of the primary charge or of the field colour to obtain a better contrast. (LoAR 25 Jan 87, p. 25)

[A seal displayed erect, tail sufflexed] The seal has intentionally been placed in a posture where it is indistinguishable from a mullet.... That this is the effect has been field-tested by Laurel staff on several non-heralds who knew nothing of the device.... A charge must be identifiable without the blazon and this is not. (LoAR 25 Jan 87, p. 27)

[The] appeal raised the question of potentially differing standards of identifiability for charges on badges because of their theoretically short-range usage in the Society. Leaving aside [the] fact that we are trying to encourage period usage of insignia, not the bookplate approach to heraldry, the fact remains that in the Society badges are - or should be - used to identify the individual, not the other way around. (LoAR 25 Jan 87, p. 27) (See also: LoAR 21 Feb 88, p. 13)

So much of the argent [overall charge] lay on the argent [ordinary] that it would be unidentifiable. (LoAR 29 Mar 87, p. 15)

[Harp issuant from a harp bag, all inverted] This [is] not period heraldic style and ... the identity of the charges would be indistinguishable at any distance. (LoAR 29 Mar 87, p. 21)

This was originally returned by Master Baldwin because the blazon was "tortuous" and the charges were difficult to recognize because of their fretting. Given the items that Society heraldry has fretted in the past, including "six two-pronged forks", fretting two axes seems reasonable. (LoAR 26 Apr 87, p. 6)

The primary charge [a sword proper, blade enflamed gules, entwined by a rose vine argent slipped and seeded Or] is just too complex and displays too poor contrast to be acceptable. The hilt Or ... fades into the argent field and the vine of roses is such a minor detail combined with the visual distraction of the flames gules, that it is difficult to determine precisely what it is. (LoAR 26 Apr 87, p. 13)

Although documentation was provided for the form of the primary charge's being a legitimate one for Viking figureheads, it is by no means the only form of Viking figurehead. Therefore, the charge could not be reconstructed by a competent heraldic artist from the blazon and may not be used for Society heraldry. (LoAR 24 May 87, p. 12)

In the latter case a single beastie in a relatively standard position is placed on [a] large goutte of flame (almost a cartouche rayonny ...): both beast and flames are clearly identifiable. In this case, the recognizability of the salamanders is materially diminished by the unusual posture and the visual confusion created by the counterchanging. (LoAR 24 May 87, pp. 13-14)

The bird's footprint [is] not an identifiable charge. (LoAR 24 May 87, p. 12)

AR2d indicates that "neutral tinctures may be used with any metal, color, or fur, except either of the component tinctures". While it is stated that the component tinctures may be used in simple cases, the underlying stricture is that a simple case only exists where the identity of the overlying charge is clearly identifiable. This is not the case with the Or chief placed on the field which is largely Or at the point where it intersects with the chief. (LoAR 24 May 87, p. 16)

Since the charge has previously been registered by the College in this gentle's device, it would seem pedantic to refuse to register it in her badge, although valid questions were raised concerning the recognizability of the shoe. (LoAR 14 Jun 87, p. 1)

The anvils in the position in which they are placed [palewise addorsed] are extremely difficult to identify. Several of those looking at the emblazon without reading the blazon mistook them for mallet or axe heads. (LoAR 14 Jun 87, p. 5)

Given the wording of the current rules on contrast, which specifically allow placement of gules on pean, this submission must be permitted. The submittor should be informed, however, the unusual monster will be virtually unidentifiable since the distinguishing features are almost entirely on a relatively low contrast field. Were the tinctures of the [party] field reversed ..., the [monster] would be much more recognizable. (LoAR 28 Jun 87, p. 1)

[Fieldless, a tabard vert] Some expressed concern that the charge was insufficiently identifiable (many of the alternatives were rather amusing), although we had to agree ... that in the hands of a competent artist the tabard would be easily identifiable. (LoAR 26 Jul 87, pp. 11-12) [Badge returned for other reasons]

The cross overlies the cup to such an extent that the cup's identity is unclear (and it is not obvious how this problem could be avoided). (LoAR 26 Jul 87, p. 13)

[On a fess per fess sable and argent, a bar counter-compony argent and sable] There was ... a consensus that the central charge, whether it be blazoned as a charged fess or a parted fess fimbriated, was too complex to readily identify "on the field". (LoAR Aug 87, p. 10)

While footprints have been registered in the past, all have been more or less identifiable as such. There was a general feeling that buffalo hoofprints were not identifiable enough (even as being hoofprints) to be used as a charge in the Society. (LoAR Aug 87, p. 10)

The wreath of holly here would inevitably be taken to be a laurel wreath: the berries are just not that prominent on a holly wreath and, given the wide variations in rendition of the wreath required for group arms, the leaf shapes are not distinctive enough to make it obvious that this is not a laurel wreath. (LoAR Aug 87, p. 11)

The collocation of charges in base [a bezant, pierced sable, between four plates within an annulet argent] is too complex to be identifiable as a component of this device. (LoAR Aug 87, p. 12)

The laurel wreath is not only too small, but also fades into the argent portion of the field to such an extent that it was virtually unidentifiable at any distance. Making the wreath larger and in a tincture like gules with acceptable contrast with both argent and sable, would resolve the problem. (LoAR Aug 87, p. 13)

[Crusilly conjoined, voided in each arm of a delf] It is almost impossible to distinguish the identity of the rather unusual charge scattered on the field. (LoAR 27 Sep 87, p. 10)

The origami crane is in trian aspect and, if it were placed in profile, there is a serious question whether it would be at all identifiable (it is marginal now). [Returned for conflict] (LoAR 31 Oct 87, p. 12)

[A two-horned fool's cap conjoined to another inverted at their brims] The fool's caps are totally unidentifiable. (LoAR 28 Nov 87, p. 10)

[Three geese naiant in pall, heads conjoined at the center] The geese were functionally unidentifiable largely because of their unusual posture. [Submission returned] (LoAR 28 Nov 87, p. 11)

[Two foxes salient respectant in annulo] The beasties [are] ... not in an identifiable heraldic position and [are] consequently extremely difficult to identify. The attempt to force the beasts into an annulate arrangement forces them out of any identifiable salient or rampant posture. (LoAR 19 Dec 87, p. 13)

[A wolf's upper jawbone] This charge is basically unidentifiable for what it is, even at a close distance. (LoAR 21 Feb 88, p. 13)

[A harp bag disgorging a wooden harp] The collocation of charges is ... not clearly identifiable at a distance.... The theory that a scabbard or a quiver derive their identifiability from the items contained does not seem to be supported by the evidence.... The design depends on a specific form of harp bag, which is not reconstructible from the blazon.... Many forms of harp bag or case are possible, but the design depends on using this particular form. Unlike the quiver or the scabbard, the identifiability of this charge depends on the clear identification of the harp which is seriously diminished by its fesswise posture and the fact that a considerable part of the visible wooden harp, which is brown, lies on the vert lining. [Submission returned] (LoAR 21 Feb 88, p. 13)

[Four tablet-weaving cards, each threaded with four threads palewise] Concern was ... expressed as to the identifiability of the table-weaving cards: several people thought them to be dice before reading the blazon. (LoAR 23 Apr 88, p. 17)

[A bordure, semy of fountains] There ... is a problem since virtually no one who looked at the device was certain that the charges on the bordure were fountains. (LoAR 29 May 88, p. 21)

[An inescutcheon, entwined by a two-headed serpent] The serpent is vital to the ... design, but is virtually unidentifiable. (LoAR 29 May 88, p. 25

[Per bend sinister, a bend sinister, overall a charge counterchanged] The parts of the [overall charge] on the field are [color] and the portion of the [overall charge] on the bend is divided per bend sinister [of two metals]: the general effect is to make the charge overall unrecognizable at any distance. (LoAR 29 May 88, p. 25)

[Per bend sinister wavy, on a bend sinister wavy counterchanged a scarpe wavy counterchanged] The visually confusing bend/bendlet counterchanged effect of the device also caused stylistic twitches: at first and even second glance it is difficult to determine precisely what is going on along the line of division. (LoAR Jun 88, p. 16)

[A double-headed eagle issuant from a pair of antlers] The lack of internal definition in the emblazon ... is not really a problem in itself, since it is typical of much early armory. However, it creates a further problem with the identifiability of the conjoint charge. The antlers are not really identifiable as such (several commenters took them for flames or a poorly drawn laurel wreath). (LoAR Jun 88, p. 19)

[Tressure triskele] It is not possible to figure out what this is from the blazon "triskele" (one person suggested that this could be an orle semy of triskeles). (LoAR Jun 88, p. 20)

Since the submittor is a member of the Order of the Pelican, the use of the Pelican would be legitimate, but the head is not really identifiable as a pelican's head, the only indicator to distinguish it being the gouttes de sang placed on the gules portion of the field (thus rendered totally invisible). (LoAR Jun 88, p. 20)

[In pale a candle enflamed upon a flat candlestick, the latter between two natural rosebuds, slipped and leaved in chevron inverted, all within a mullet of eight points voided] Not one but three charges are framed within this voided mullet and they are so arranged as to minimize their identifiability. [Device returned] (LoAR Jul 88, p. 18)

[A pale, overall an antelope counterchanged] It should be noted that the counterchange here significantly diminishes the identifiability of the already unusual animate charge and is therefore highly inadvisable. [Returned for conflict] (LoAR 30 Oct 88, p. 16)

[A roundel surmounted by four talons in cross] It is notable that virtually nobody in the College could determine what the charges were surmounting the [roundel] without looking at the blazon (several heralds in different kingdoms blazoned them first as four ice cream cones in cross!). (LoAR 30 Oct 88, p. 17)

[Per pale and per bend of two colors] In the case of ... gyronny, there is at least the "presumption of identity" since the tinctures are evenly divided in a standard field division. In this case the field division is not standard and so is much less identifiable (there was an overwhelming desire to blazon it as quarterly when looking at the device quickly). (LoAR 24 Dec 88, p. 15)

The cradle is drawn in trian aspect and is nearly unidentifiable. (LoAR 24 Dec 88, p. 16)

The [charges in canton] are so diminished in size that they are nearly unidentifiable. (LoAR 26 Feb 89, p. 19)

The [argent] blade of the sword, lying almost entirely on the Or portion of the field, is virtually unidentifiable even when (especially when) entwined by the stems of the roses. (LoAR 26 Mar 89, p. 20)

While the two grape bunches do lie on the [primary charge] in the emblazon, the identifying leaf portions of the [vert] vine lie almost entirely on the [color] field. Additionally, the vine adds an extra level of complexity of tincture and design that is ... "awfully busy". (LoAR 30 Apr 89, p. 17)

[A stag salient through a heart voided] Joined to the voided heart is the design which depends on the beast "doing a circus stunt" ..., i.e., jumping through the heart. This posture inevitably obscures some of the identifying features of both the stag and the heart, since the head and antlers of the stag overlie the indentation of the heart to chief. Thus the shape of the upper portion of the heart is obscured and, since the [metal] antlers lie largely along the [metal] curve of the heart, so are the identifying antlers. (LoAR 30 Apr 89, p. 18)

[A unicorn's head and a pegasus' head] The conjoining of two such similar charges ... in a mirror image arrangement reinforced by the counterchanging reduced the identifiability of each and was not period style. (LoAR 21 May 89, p. 18)

The use of two different varieties of dog's heads in a single group of charges reduced the identifiability of each to the point where the device was unacceptable. (LoAR 21 May 89, p. 25)

The counterchanging along the [complex] line of division unacceptably reduced the identifiability of the already unusually placed [charge]. (LoAR 18 Jun 89, p. 9)

[Two bendlets disjointed fimbriated] The addition of the fimbriation here adds an unacceptable degree of confusion to the visual effect which seriously reduces the overall identifiability of the unusual bend. (LoAR 18 Jun 89, p. 10)

[A table cut gemstone] This does not seem to meet our current standards for identifiability of charge. As has frequently been noted before, not all items documented in period are suitable for heraldic charges and this seems to fall into that category of exceptions. In effect, without the interior markings, this is a peculiar billet ... and not really identifiable without the blazon as the gemstone [the submittor] desires. (LoAR 18 Jun 89, p. 10) (See also: LoAR 22 Oct 89, p. 8)

The enflaming of the laurel wreath rendered it unidentifiable enough that it is not really a "significant" part of the design. (LoAR 27 Aug 89, p. 21)

[On a table-cut gemstone, a sea-serpent ondoyant emergent] This ... [submission] combines two charges which are difficult to impossible to readily identify at a distance: the gemstone and truncated sea-serpent.... It is not emerging from anything and so there is little or no logic to the incompleteness of the serpent. (LoAR 27 Aug 89, p. 22)

The three tiny charges of two types and two tinctures packed into the compartment below the chevron are very difficult to identify. (LoAR 27 Aug 89, p. 23)

The squirrel pelts are not standard heraldic charges and are not identifiable without the blazon (one member of Laurel staff blazoned this as "three Caspers in fess"!). (LoAR 30 Sep 89, p. 14)

For the purposes of the rule on Armorial Identifiability, any ordinary placed at the center of the shield (e.g., a pale, pall, bend, fess, etc.) may be fimbriated, even if it uses a complex line of division, provided that the identifiability of the charge and the line of division are not significantly reduced by the voiding or fimbriation or any other element of the design (e.g., the placement of superimposed charges). (LoAR 26 Nov 89, p. 23)

[A fret couped within and conjoined to a heart voided] After much consideration we were compelled to the opinion that the charge ... is just not clearly identifiable enough to be considered period style. (LoAR 26 Nov 89, p. 33)

The device is pushed over the edge of complexity under both rules by use of the four tinctures and four different charges with one type (the [ordinary]) diminished in identifiability because it is defined entirely by its fimbriation. (LoAR 26 Nov 89, pp. 33-34)

A bordure compony gules and Or may not be placed on a field Or: under both sets of rules, this would reduce the identifiability of the bordure to an unacceptable degree. (Note that the submittors intuitively grasped this problem: the field and the bordure are depicted in radically different shades of Or.) (LoAR 26 Nov 89, p. 34)

[A saltire parted and fretted, the points of intersection fretted with four annulets] The diminution in size of the saltire-annulet combination brings it under the ban on "thin-line heraldry" in the old rules and the requirement for identifiability in the new rules (Armorial Identifiability, X.3, p. 11). (LoAR 26 Nov 89, p. 40)

[Per pale, a beast, overall a bend cotised counterchanged] This falls under the prohibition of excessive counterchanging under the old rules and the requirement for identifiability in the new rules (Armorial Identifiability, X.3, p. 11). There was a strong consensus on the part of the College that the complex counterchanging rendered the [beast] virtually unidentifiable. (LoAR 26 Nov 89, p. 40)

The ... "hooded veil" ... was only identifiable after reading the blazon (like [one commenter], we took it at first to be a form of helm). (LoAR 31 Dec 89, p. 21)

The question arose as to whether the [Arabic] inscription met the requirements for identifiability which are set by present and past rules. After some discussion, we decided that they did given the limitations on differencing noted by [the submitting herald] and others: that all that is protected is "... blocks of Arabic script...". The inscriptions are readily identifiable to even one without any expertise in things Arabic as being Arabic script. (LoAR 21 Jan 90, p. 13)

[Per pale, in saltire a sword and a trumpet between four quill pens tergiant, nibs to center] This [is] overly complex, particularly for a badge: three types of charges, four tinctures and quill pens in a position (tergiant!) which almost guarantees unrecognizability. (LoAR 21 Jan 90, p. 22)

The crystal point is ... unidentifiable as such and therefore may not be used. (LoAR 25 Feb 90, p. 21)

The use of two types of fleurs-de-lys in the same group was stylistically confusing, diminished by the identifiability of the aberrant fleurs and was just not period style. (LoAR 25 Feb 90, p. 22)

[A wingless dragon passant, its body nowed in a Hungerford knot] While the "standard" nowing makes the posture somewhat more blazonable..., it is still not a standard position for such a beastie. In point of fact, it renders the identification of the wingless dragon nearly impossible. This being the case, it cannot be registered. (LoAR 31 Mar 90, p. 15)

[Three flames of fire between two wings conjoined, displayed and inverted] The flames are so reduced in size by the design that they are virtually unidentifiable. Moreover, there is really no way to guarantee that this design will be drawn in this particular manner, even through a long and precise blazon. These two facts together clearly point to a design that is not period style. (LoAR 31 Mar 90, p. 16)

[Per pale and barry wavy argent and sable, on a chief triangular sable ...] As [the design's] identifiability is undiminished by its being depicted in one of the field tinctures, there is no problem with this device under either set of rules. (LoAR 29 Apr 90, p. 3)

[A chevron, overall a winged beast rampant counterchanged] The complex counterchanging of the [beast] renders it virtually unidentifiable. [Returned] (LoAR 29 Apr 90, p. 17)

There are three distinct charges conjoined which diminishes the identifiability of them all, save perhaps the [demi-monster].... The basic concept of the design requires an abnormal elongation of the fret to chief to allow it to be fretted with the chevron while being couped rather close to base. This is just visually too confusing. (LoAR 28 May 90, p. 21)

The rules allow good contrast between an element equally divided of a colour and metal and another element "as long as identifiability is maintained". (LoAR 17 Jun 90, p. 17)

The neutrality of the divided field is only permitted where it does not diminish the identifiability of charges laid upon it. (LoAR 17 Jun 90, p. 17)

Indented

As has been well established in the past by a considerable body of mundane scholarly research, as well as by Society precedent, period usage appears to have reserved the term "dancetty" for ordinaries rather than lines of division: the distinction between "dancetty" and "indented" when applied to ordinaries being not one of amplitude, ... but a distinction parallel to that between counterembattled and bretessed. (LoAR 24 Dec 88, p. 10)

Inescutcheon

The charged delf appeared to be arms of pretense of [mundane arms]. [Submission returned] (LoAR 19 Mar 88, p. 17)

The use of the inescutcheon here for the augmentation would seem to be prohibited by the ban on appearance of pretense in AR10d: note that such usual insignia of augmentation as chiefs, cantons, bases are not included here. (LoAR Aug 88, p. 16)

Infringement

See also Presumption

[Fieldless, a tabard vert] Unfortunately, as the tabard has been traditionally the herald's identifying garment, both mundanely and in the Society, and green has been the traditional Society tincture for heralds, the consensus was that this would infringe on the traditional insignia of the Society. (LoAR 26 Jul 87, pp. 11-12)

Insect

The difference in shape between the moth and the dragonfly were not tantamount to a major point of difference. (LoAR 18 Jun 89, p. 12)

An earwig was registered after both the bans on "tiny insects" like fleas.... It was our feeling that the famous "Rule of Toyota" applied here. (LoAR 30 Jul 89, p. 10)

Insect - Ant

An emmet is the period form for ant: we have retained this term to preserve the cant. (LoAR 29 Mar 87, p. 7)

Instrument - Knife

[Half moon knife] Documentation [has been] provided for a knife/axehead of essentially this shape used in German heraldry prior to 1483 (in the arms of Frankenstein!!!). (LoAR 18 Jun 89, p. 3)

Instrument - Musical

As the mouthpiece is to sinister, this [flute] is not reversed. (LoAR 26 Nov 89, p. 3)

[A wasp-waisted epinette des Vosges] The submittor desired a mountain dulcimer of the "hourglass" type that is familiar to many of us as a more accessible version of the period French "epinette des Vosges" or the German "Scheitholt" (which is usually more like the classic "cigar box dulcimer"). Her documentation noted that the period form of the dulcimer is the epinette des Vosges, although the form shown on the particular page photocopied was squarer. However, the documentation provided for the submission of Gwidia Arrowcastre in 1986 provides support for this form. (LoAR 31 Dec 89, p. 11)

Like dice tambourines are allowed quasi-trian aspect. The frame is dark wood and the "jingles" are argent which is usual for such things and may be covered by the terms "proper". (LoAR 28 May 90, p. 11)

Instrument - Musical - Harp

[Rioghbhardan (a documented given which means "royal bard"), and on the device a rainbow and a harp] The harp is problematic when taken with the given name. [Name registered, device returned] (LoAR 19 Mar 88, p. 15)

Instrument - Musical - Horn

Vis-a-vis the default position for hunting horns..., Woodward (p. 385) says "In Scottish Heraldry it is the invariable practice to represent the hunting-horn with the mouthpiece on the dexter side of the escutcheon. In England and on the Continent, the reverse is the case." In point of fact, most standard heraldic references depict hunting horns as they are oriented here.... To avoid confusion, the blazon has been modified ... to specify that the bell is to sinister. (LoAR 26 Apr 87, p. 8)

Instrument - Musical - Violin and Fiddle

The submittor provided documentation, both from his own research and from Munrow's Instruments of the Middle Ages and Renaissance for the use of the violin in the sixteenth century, including citations for the instrument as far afield as Scotland where Mary Queen of Scots was serenaded by them as early as 1561. (LoAR 26 Feb 89, p. 1)

Inverted Charge

There was a general consensus that the two [identical charges] conjoined [at their bases on a per fess line of division] were neither period style nor identifiable, even at close range. (LoAR 28 Dec 86, p. 16) (See also: LoAR 28 Nov 87, p. 10)

The use of ermine tails inverted in a semy is not period style. (LoAR 25 Jan 87, p. 16)

Note that the inversion of the tree diminishes its recognizability and therefore its visual force. (LoAR 25 Jan 87, p. 20)

The overall effect would be much more period if both [charges] were oriented in the same direction. (LoAR 29 Mar 87, p. 19)

Irreverent Comments (Humor)

[Azure, a lucy between three lozenges argent] Sorrowful Irreverent Comment from a member of the Laurel staff: "The Beatles may not be period, but they date to at least A.S. I; why does it make me feel so old when only Berkeley and the Laurel staff got the cant?" (LoAR 15 Jan 89, p. 5)

[Two moose's heads respectant, horns locked] Irreverent comment from Laurel staff: "But that is the real badge of the College of Arms!"] (LoAR 21 May 89, p. 5)

 


J

Japanese Charges

[Pine needles] It should be noted that this distinctly gives the appearance of "thin line heraldry" by Western standards. However, as these needles have been documented to be a well-defined charge in Japanese emblazons and are [the] sole charges, we are inclined to cut some slack. [Device registered] (LoAR 25 Feb 90, p. 5)

Jewels/Jewelry

[A table cut gemstone] As has frequently been noted before, not all items documented in period are suitable for heraldic charges and this seems to fall into that category of exceptions. In effect, without the interior markings, this is a peculiar billet ... and not really identifiable without the blazon as the gemstone [the submittor] desires. (LoAR 18 Jun 89, p. 10) (See also: LoAR 27 Aug 89, p. 22; LoAR 22 Oct 89, p. 8)

Precedent ... dictates that a piece of jewelry is not as such registerable: "We all recognize that beautiful piece of jewelry; there are people making a living out of selling reproductions of it; in some senses it is copyright and in others it is in the public domain, and you cannot register it." This ruling seems as valid now as when Karina of the Far West first issued it ten years ago. (LoAR 22 Oct 89, pp. 8-9)

Judgment Call

This [per pale field, two identical charges counterchanged, on a point pointed three annulets interlaced] skates perilously close to "slot-machine heraldry".... (Ed. Note: Yes, that is a judgment call.) (LoAR 25 Jan 87, p. 13)

This is very close to the device of [Name].... There is a clear major point for the removal of the [secondary charges], but it is arguable whether the visual differences between the two sets of long [color] objects in saltire should be considered a major point of difference. In view of the extreme simplicity of the devices in both cases, we were inclined to give the submittor the benefit of the doubt but would seriously encourage him not to draw the [primary charges] in too elongated a fashion lest there be confusion with [Name]. (LoAR 25 Jan 87, p. 15)

The visual similarities between the fret and the snowflake ... were so strong that we felt there was infringement. (LoAR 25 Jan 87, p. 27)

The "grey areas" of visual conflict often seem to occur more frequently in the more complex the device in its processing ...: so much is required in the digestion and/or so unusual are the patterns that each change has less cumulative effect. It is unavoidable that there will be "judgement calls" in such cases. When this is the case, the final determinant will be the actual emblazons compared by Laurel and anyone else at the meeting. (CL 18 May 87, pp. 4-5)

Whether the overall effect of the "given name" is intrusively modern is admittedly a judgement call: on either side some element of the subjective must be present.... The determination that the name was excessively modern was based on "test exposure" to a fairly large sampling of gentles in the street (i.e., those not members of the College of Arms) who uniformly had problems with the name. [Registered for other reasons.] (LoAR Jul 88, p. 3)

 


K

Kanji

While abstract symbols may be used in badges, AR10c specifically states that "a badge shall not consist solely of one abstract symbol". Any kanji character must be considered an "abstract symbol" in the sense that the Rules intend. (LoAR 26 Apr 87, p. 9)

Katar

Even amongst those weapons mavens who were aware that a katar is a peculiarly Indian two-handled dagger, there was a general consensus that the charge was not identifiable. (LoAR 28 Dec 86, p. 14)

Key

"The Society's convention, the opposite of that in most mundane heraldry, is that the wards of the key, though they are drawn to dexter, are shown downward." (Precedents I, p. 13) (LoAR 26 Oct 86, p. 4)

Knot

The "Solomon's knot" is not a standard heraldic charge and no documentation has been provided for its use. Several commentors noted that from the blazon many heraldic artists would depict the "Solomon's seal" which is quite a different thing. (LoAR 28 Feb 87, p. 19)

[Gyronny, a knot counterchanged] There was a considerable consensus in the College that counterchanging the knot so complexly rendered it virtually unidentifiable. Making the knot a solid colour or simplifying the field division so that the knot was not cut into so many small pieces would remove this problem. (LoAR 21 Jan 90, p. 20)

Knotwork

The orle is in essence a form of Celtic knotwork, which has been ruled illicit for Society use ("Knotwork is not, by and large, heraldic." Karina of the Far West, July, 1979). (LoAR 28 Dec 86, p. 15)

By long-standing Society precedent braided knotwork is not permitted for Society armoury, however common it may be in Society artwork. (LoAR 26 Jul 87, p. 12)

[A pall hummetty, each arm terminating in a unicorn's head and the upper arms elongated and fretted] The pall not only violated the ancient ban on knotwork, but could not be reconstructed from the blazon, ingenious as it was. (LoAR 23 Apr 88, p. 21)

The primary issue here ... is whether the pall of [many] Wake knots could be considered acceptable for heraldic use in the Society or should come under the long-standing ban on "knotwork". The issue is not merely whether the charge or charges can be blazoned..., but whether the charge or charges can be readily identified by the casual observer to be what they are.

Commentary in the College, which was substantially opposed to dropping the ban on knotwork, reflects a reality here. While the conjoint charge can be easily blazoned, it cannot be readily identified without already being aware of the blazoning. Viewed at a distance, the central design element is as likely to be interpreted as a pall invected with some peculiar internal diapering as it is to be interpreted correctly as a conjoining of otherwise identifiable knots. When the separated knots are placed in a standard heraldic position, their familiar outline renders them identifiable. When this outline is diminished, as it is here, by reduction in size and conjoining, they are no longer clearly identifiable. This is the case with virtually all "knotwork", no matter how easily blazonable, and that is the most cogent reason for not permitting it in the Society. (LoAR 18 Sep 88, p. 14)

[A three-strand Sennet braid] It was our feeling that this fess of braid must fall under the long-standing ban on knotwork. As the interwining of the strands is so important an element of the overall design, it is not really reasonable to blazon the charge as a fess invected and to consider the interior markings as elaborate diapering. (LoAR 30 Oct 88, p. 13)

[Three Wake knots conjoined in pall throughout] The original ban on knotwork was based as much on the problem of its irreproducibility and identifiability as on any question of its use in period.... The question is whether the conjunction of the knots diminishes their identifiability to the point where they should not be allowed. In this case, the answer seems to be "no". Note, however, that this would not be the case were the knots not of themselves clearly defined period heraldic charges, were the knot itself complex or requiring modification in shape to produce the conjunction (as would be the case with a Lacy knot) or were the numbers so increased ... as to diminish the size seriously. (LoAR 26 Nov 89, p. 9)

 


L

Label

The form of the label with angled "tags" is period and is a matter of artistic license. The fact that the label is couped, however, must be specified since the default label in Society heraldry is throughout. (LoAR 29 Mar 87, p. 8)

The label charged with two different charges in two tinctures is just too complex. (LoAR 24 May 87, p. 14)

The Society has for many years considered labels as charges in their own right as well as marks of primary cadency. (LoAR 30 Jul 89, p. 1)

The examples of "non-royal" use of charged labels adduced from period by [the principal herald] were all used with extremely simple armoury (the most complex consisted of three identical charges on a plain field) with all charges on the label identical. Moreover, all the examples used the labels as claims of pretense, which is not the case here. (LoAR 26 Nov 89, p. 32)

Lamp

Much debate centered on the propriety of using the term "Arabian" for the lamp depicted. As the precedent for using the term has already been set by the well-known badge of Ithra..., there seems no compelling reason to deny the submittor his preferred blazon. (LoAR 27 Sep 86, p. 5)

Law of Toyota

[A woman courant, wearing a winged helm, drawn in a "1920's representation" style] This submission is still not very period in style, but the consensus of the College was that the Law of Toyota should apply ("you asked for it, you've got it"). (LoAR 19 Dec 87, p. 1)

Layers

This is clearly four layers, using a charge surmounting a tertiary, which is forbidden. (LoAR 28 Dec 86, p. 20)

[A chevron, surmounted by three piles in point counterchanged, the central one charged] There was a general feeling in the College that this was non-period in style.... It is also overly complex.... "The field is the first layer. The chevron is the second. The piles are the third, and so the [tertiary] is the fourth layer, which is not allowed." (LoAR Aug 87, p. 12)

Leg

[An armoured leg, bent at the knee] Human legs [in SCA heraldry] have been used in a variety of postures, some not at all usual in mundane heraldry. To guarantee the submittor the device he wishes, we must forego the most elegant blazon. (LoAR 18 Sep 88, p. 11)

After much consideration (and evaluation of so many pictures of heraldic legs and boots that some accused Laurel of adopting foot fetishism!), we have come to the conclusion that the two cannot be considered adequately different enough to carry this clear.... Certainly, comparisons of the "heraldic boot" and the "heraldic leg" are similar enough in depiction that the two cannot be considered to be fully distinct charges. (LoAR 26 Nov 89, p. 39)

Letters and Runes

See also, Kanji

[A chevron palewise to sinister couped] The chevron here forms one of the standard runes, as given in Koch's Book of Signs, and runic characters are forbidden for use in devices, although they have been used on a case by case basis in badges. (LoAR 27 Sep 86, p. 11)

It was our definite feeling that "initial" badges should be registered only after the most serious consideration, since such usage would prohibit the general use of initials for decoration on personal articles or insignia (e.g., favours), a perfectly period practice which should be encouraged. In this case, the clear intent to use a modern style royal monogram impelled us to return the submission. (LoAR 25 Jan 87, p. 16)

[A pale issuant to base from a chevron throughout] This is merely a reblazoning of a Tir rune throughout and runes are symbols not permitted for use in Society devices. (LoAR 24 Jan 88, p. 6)

The new rules technically allow letters and symbols on devices where they can be shown to have been used in period heraldry.... (LoAR 21 Jan 90, p. 13)

The Norse sun cross was banned some years ago because it resembled an astrological symbol. As symbols may be used on a case by case basis, this ban now seems unnecessary. (LoAR 29 Apr 90, p. 9)

The ban on registry of a single symbol in such a way as to reserve use of that symbol to an individual dates back to 1981, pre-dating its appearance in the rule cited.... It is not necessarily voided by the portion of the rules revision that allows symbols in devices. It should also be noted that there is no evidence for the use of runes in period armoury (unlike alphabetic symbols which are known). (LoAR 17 Jun 90, p. 18)

Lightning

The lower portion of the badge is derived directly from the device of [one of the two submittors], passed prior to the current ban on natural lightning flashes, and so we felt it should be covered by the "Grandfather Clause". (LoAR 28 Dec 86, p. 1)

This badge submission specifically plays against their device which was passed in 1981, well before the ban on natural lightning [flashes] and, according to well-established precedent, would be allowed to claim protection under the Grandfather Clause. (LoAR 28 Feb 87, p. 20)

The submittor has thoroughly documented the existence of these sort of "heraldic lightning bolts" on Roman Imperial shields independent of the Jovian "winged cigar and thunderbolt" motif, which should prove comforting to those who have been concerned about the Society's adoption of this design element to replace the "shazam". (LoAR 21 May 89, p. 12

Line of Division

It was the consensus of the College that the line of division used for the chief [multiply nowed] is too difficult to identify and will inevitably be confused with traditional nebuly or wavy and therefore should not be accepted for use in the Society. (LoAR 27 Sep 86, p. 10)

PRECEDENT AND DEFINITION: For the purposes of AR2c, where it is stated that "in simple cases only, a party field tinctured either all dark or all light may use a complex line of partition", a simple case shall be defined as follows:

1. No charge shall significantly obscure the line of division.

2. The line of division shall be one of those specified in AR2a, i.e., shall divide the field into no more than four parts.

3. Where two colours are involved, they must be of sufficient contrast, i.e., must be a combination of gules with sable, vert or azure. (LoAR 26 Oct 86, pp. 2, 10-11) (See also: LoAR 28 Jun 87, p. 2; LoAR 28 Nov 87, p. 6)

[Per pale embattled azure and sable with a single large charge] The field contrast here is extremely low and the line of division is partially obscured by the high contrast charge so that it is virtually impossible to determine the precise line of division. Note that two of the three conditions for the use of complex partition lines stated in the case [above] are absent here, making it an excellent antithetical example. (LoAR 26 Oct 86, pp. 10-11)

The line of division was submitted as "erased" and accompanied by documentation from a fourteenth-century Welsh heraldic tract which did indeed show that "erased" was a period form of usage for that partition line that is shown in our standard references as "rayonny". While we agree that, all things being equal, it is better to use a period term than a modern one, in this instance it seems preferable to retain the term "rayonny".... The usage of "erased" as a line of division is so obscure that we were unable to find it in any of the standard tests used by herald artists and local heralds throughout the Society.... This being so, the natural instinct of the heraldic artist will be to consider this as a heraldic neologism, derived from the usage of erased in the depiction of beast's heads, which would result in a line of partition rather different from that which appears on the emblazon. (LoAR 29 Mar 87, p. 11)

In the Rules published at the end of Master Wilhelm's tenure as Laurel, it is clearly stated (IX.4) "those partitions allowed to use two colors or two metals should not use complex lines of division, as those will be difficult to discern at a distance, due to poor contrast" and (IX.5) "the basic requirement in all cases is that there be sufficient contrast for clear visibility". (LoAR 29 Mar 87, p. 23)

Please ... draw the embattling properly. On the emblazon sheet it was drawn so that the battlements replaced the Or portions of the chequy immediately below the primary line of division of the chief. The battlements should be twice as large in order to make clear the identity of the line of division. (LoAR 24 May 87, p. 5)

One of the requirements for the use of a complex line of division with two tinctures draws from the same class is that they have "sufficient contrast". Although the rules do make allusion to fields which are all "light", in most cases fields entirely divided of Or and argent do not support most complex lines of division. In this particular case, where the wings of the birds, lying along the line of division, distract the eye from its nature, it is difficult to determine which line of division has been used. (LoAR 26 Jul 87, p. 9)

While [it is correct] that the precise location of the per chevron line of division should be adapted to allow the charges to fill the field, it is probably necessary here to specify the line of division as being enhanced to obtain the relative sizes of the three charges that the submittor clearly desires. (LoAR Aug 87, p. 4)

The [stag's] attire issuant from the line of division is very poor style. (LoAR Aug 87, p. 11)

We could not find a period example of [a] "bevilled" chief. [Device returned for this as well as other problems] (LoAR 21 Feb 88, p. 11)

It [is] doubtful whether a full point of difference should be granted for the difference between the partition line indented and the wavy.... Certainly, a comparison of the emblazons suggests a visual conflict. (LoAR 23 Apr 88, p. 21)

The device must be returned because it uses the line of division "wavy crested" which has specifically been ruled to be modern and not compatible with Society style (as of August, 1980). (LoAR 26 Nov 89, p. 33)

Under the old rules, there is the problem of the use of the line dovetailed with a gyronny of two colours which is problematic at best.... Under the new rules the gyronny of two colours would not be permitted at all, much less with a complex division line. (LoAR 26 Nov 89, p. 40

[A bordure parted bordurewise indented] The bordure is a period usage, as noted by several commentors who adduced a number of examples of bordures and other ordinaries parted in this manner. (LoAR 21 Jan 90, p. 21)

We are inclined to follow modern practise and allow difference for the conversion of indented to one of the rounded division lines, so long as the identifiability of the line of division is clearly maintained (i.e., as long as it is used in such a manner that it can be identified, as would be the case when applied to a primary charge). (LoAR 25 Feb 90, p. 6)

The basic problem is whether when a line of division is applied to only part of a charge, it should be considered similar to (and thus worth only a minor point from) the same line of division applied fully to the charge. When one considers the lines of division that are specifically stated to be similar in the old rules (e.g., embattled/raguly/dovetailed/urdy), it is clear that the visual weight applied is similar to that which is present when only half of the charge has the line of division applied to it. To look at it another way, the amount of visual difference present between the two [charges] here closely approximates that between a mullet of five points and a mullet of eight points: that is specifically stated to be worth only a minor point of difference under the old rules, even though both have well-defined identities in the Society. After due consideration, the conflict must be held to exist under the old rules. (LoAR 25 Feb 90, p. 16)

We would be inclined to grant difference between an ordinary invected and an ordinary engrailed on the grounds that the two were distinguished in period armoury and have traditionally been distinguished quite well in Society armoury. However, we cannot in conscience grant difference where the ordinary involves both lines of division. (LoAR 25 Feb 90, p. 19)

Lozenge

The lozenge is drawn as fesswise throughout and is therefore neither a standard lozenge nor vetû. (LoAR 27 Sep 86, p. 10)

[A delf and a lozenge, voided and interlaced] Given the visual similarity of the primary charge to a number of depictions of a snowflake in Society heraldry and mundane art, this appears to [conflict with (Name)]. (LoAR Aug 87, p. 13)

[A charged lozenge throughout fimbriated] The lozenge throughout is equivalent to "vetû" and that should never be fimbriated. (LoAR 23 Apr 88, p. 16)

[Vetû vs. a lozenge throughout] Long-standing Society precedent considers the two to be interchangeably depicted. (LoAR 17 Jun 90, p. 16)

Lozengy

Since the "perpendicular" lines of a chequy parallel the edges of a charge (examine the examples of a bend or a saltire chequy in Elvin and other sources), the proper blazon for the division the submittor desires for the bordure would seem to be "chequy", not the "lozengy" of the submitted blazon. (LoAR 26 Apr 87, p. 5)

 


M

Magic

See also, Occult

A hand appaumy or averse, couped and enflamed, is so suggestive of the black magic charm known as a "Hand of Glory" that it should not be used in Society heraldry.... While the depiction of the "Hand of Glory" is by no means uniform in medieval and Renaissance woodcuts and paintings, it regularly appears as a typifying emblem of the abode or gathering place of witches and generally the preserved hand is shown associated with flame, either with the fingers enflamed or the whole hand enflamed.... In view of its strong suggestiveness of a "Hand of Glory", a hand appaumy or averse enflamed may not be used as a charge in Society heraldry. (LoAR 26 Apr 87, p. 9)

Mail

[A hana-gusari] It has not been established that this is an unvarying heraldic charge, even in the Japanese system, which could be depicted solely from the blazon by a competent heraldic artist. If blazoned in western terms, the links in profile definitely become a serious anomaly. (LoAR 28 Feb 87, p. 15)

Mandrake

There is no fixed form for the mandrake in heraldry (the citations from Dennys' Heraldic Imagination provided by the submittor only reinforce this). (LoAR 27 Sep 87, p. 10)

Marshalling

[Quarterly Or and vert, in bend sinister a mullet of four points within a laurel wreath and a castle, all Or] This simply adds the laurel wreath to their already registered badge. [The principal herald] has invoked the "Grandfather Clause" and, while we do not feel comfortable in accepting the obvious marshalling here, we have to agree that it would not be consistent or just for us to return the device in this case.... Given the original registration, we have no choice but to accept the modification proposed here. (LoAR 19 Dec 87, p. 3)

[Quarterly argent and lozengy gules and argent, in bend two pairs of oak leaves pilewise, fructed, vert, overall a fillet cross sable] Despite the attenuated cross, this clearly looks like quartering (the impression is the greater since the Germanic nations commonly superimpose a cross on the line of division of their grand quarters. What is more, ... it quarters the arms of Monaco in the second and third quarters! (LoAR 19 Dec 87, p. 18)

[Per pale dovetailed, with different charges on each side of the field] Yes, this feels like impaling. Yes, it is legal under the current rules. (LoAR Jul 88, p. 2)

[Per pale and per fess embattled] Under the current rules, the embattling of the line per fess protects this device from the restriction of quartering, although some commentors familiar with Continental heraldry have noted that using a complex line of division on the horizontal line of partition of a quartered display of arms is quite common (as indeed is the use of a cross overall). (LoAR 26 Feb 89, p. 7)

[Per pale wavy] Note that this does not constitute marshalling under the old rules. While such usage appears strongly to be marshalling to many, we have not yet been presented with the research necessary to rule this marshalling under the standards of the new rules: "with complex lines of partition or charges overall that were not used for marshalling in period heraldry" (XI.3.1, p. 16). Note that, although we have found modern Continental examples of "per pale wavy" being used in Continental heraldry, we have as yet found no period examples. (LoAR 26 Nov 89, p. 7)

While we sympathise with those who would like to forbid plain quarters ermine (as being in conflict with Brittany), long tradition disallows such protection. (LoAR 26 Nov 89, p. 20)

Mascle

Both the proportionally greater "voided" space and the "frame" effect [framing another charge] have been previously established in Society usage for mascles. (LoAR 26 Apr 87, p. 1)

Mollusk - Snail

By the precedent set with the passage of the device of Jaelle of Armida in 1984, snails can be guardant. (LoAR 30 Oct 88, p. 7)

[A commenter] errs when he says that snails have no faces: after examination of a number of Society badges and devices featuring snails, we have been forced to the conclusion that in Society heraldry they do. (LoAR 27 Nov 88, p. 24)

Mon

The fact that [the submittor] is designing a mon does not exempt him from the usual rules on contrast and style. (LoAR 31 Oct 87, p. 13)

Monster

The [gripping] beasties are not clearly identifiable and the emblazon could not be reasonably reconstructed by a competent heraldic artist as our traditions require. In point of fact, the rendition on the emblazon sheet and the letter of intent were quite different.... (LoAR 26 Oct 86, p. 9)

There is no fixed [em]blazon for a "demon" in heraldry and depictions in period sources vary widely. The beast on the emblazon could reasonably have been blazoned as "a pterodactyl courant erect", but we suspected that the submittor might not actually have a pterodactyl in mind. (LoAR 26 Apr 87, p. 11)

[Rabbit, armed with a stag's attire] We were severely tempted to blazon the beastie as a "jackalope", but realize that not all heraldic artists read the comics. (LoAR 24 May 87, p. 8)

If the modifications create a beast which has a separate identity of its own, either in period or modern heraldry (e.g., a lion as opposed to a sea-lion), it is feasible for the modifications to produce a major point of difference. If the modifications produce a beast which is clearly derivative (e.g., a winged sheep), then the difference created will be minor. (LoAR 14 Jun 87, p. 6)

[A monster composed of a human figure with the head and foreclaws of a griffin and the mane, tail and rear paws of a lion] We decided that ... it was primarily the rendition of the monster, which would have done credit to a professional strip inker, that prejudiced so many commentors against it. There is, taken in itself, nothing unreasonable about the monster and, in a full-sized emblazon, it is clearly identifiable. (LoAR 28 Nov 87, p. 4)

[A monster composed of the body of a lion conjoined to the torso and head of a man] Note that this monster is quite in the period tradition: something almost identical appears on arms attributed to King Stephen of England (von Volborth, Heraldry: Customs, Rules and Styles, p. 47) (LoAR 19 Dec 87, p. 9)

[The principal herald] has argued that a "properly drawn" pegasus volant will have the body essentially horizontal while the same beast rampant has the body essentially vertical. Unfortunately, there is no standard default depiction for monsters volant in the Society (the issue tends not to arise in mundane heraldry!) and the body position tends to vary somewhat. [LoAR July 88, p. 20)

Although minor details of a charge may break tincture, the crining and furring of the beast here is not minor. The contrast between the sable of the lower extremities of the satyr and the vert of the field is so dim that the lower portion of the monster fades into the field. Since the goatish nether regions of the satyr are its primary distinguishing features, this unacceptably reduces the identifiability of the primary charge. [Submission returned] (LoAR Aug 88, p. 23)

[Sea-serpent emergent ondoyant, in chief three maces] While there is perhaps a precedent for the peculiarly fragmented partial sea-serpent in Caid in the armoury of the Barony of Calafia, this is an old one. The serpent emerging from thin air does not seem to be a period charge and the effect here is to have three charges in fess in chief with another three non-identical fragments in base. [Returned] (LoAR 17 Jun 90, p. 13)

Monster - Dragon and Wyvern

The visual difference between the [winged] "sea-dragons" here and the traditional period wyvern are negligible. (LoAR 28 Dec 86, p. 13)

The "ramping" posture ... is the default for dragons and wyverns. (LoAR 28 Nov 87, p. 6)

Society terminology follows the later English tradition which distinguishes between the two-legged wyvern and the four-legged dragon, although this distinction seems not to have existed in the earlier period and still does not exist in continental heraldry. (LoAR 15 Jan 89, p. 1) (See also: LoAR 28 Dec 86, p. 13; LoAR 31 Dec 89, p. 18; LoAR 17 Jun 90, p. 1)

Monster - Minotaur

The fact that a bull-headed human figure is one of the more common representations of the minotaur in antiquity is somewhat irrelevant to the issue of whether the blazon should be changed from its current "bull's head" to a minotaur's head. All the documentation provided demonstrates that the head of a minotaur is a bull's head and cannot be distinguished as a minotaur without the remainder of the creature. (LoAR 25 Jan 87, p. 18)

Monster - Pithon

[A pithon erect to sinister, one wing inverted and the other elevated] There are three distinct problems with this badge. First of all, it is demonstrably non-period style and definitely a non-standard pithon. Secondly, ... it is a commonly available piece of jewelry which is almost certainly in the public domain and arguably should not be reserved for use to one individual. Finally, if the pithon is drawn in a standard heraldic manner in the nearest heraldic position, there is a conflict.... (LoAR 28 Dec 86, p. 12)

Monster - Salamander

[It was] quite properly noted that salamanders are normally enflamed so that this would not be an anomaly for Society heraldry. In asserting that using flames for a salamander should not be interpreted as fimbriation, however, several erroneous analogies are made. The citation of the badge for the Order of the Salamander ... as proof that salamanders tergiant can be enflamed is valid, but neglects the unusual posture of the salamanders in [this] device and the reality of the ... badge [cited]. In the latter case a single beastie in a relatively standard position is placed on [a] large goutte of flame (almost a cartouche rayonny ...): both beast and flames are clearly identifiable. In this case, the recognizability of the salamanders is materially diminished by the unusual posture and the visual confusion created by the counterchanging. Moreover, the proportion of flame to beast is much diminished (and must be in order to maintain the central "island" of the field). The reason for the ban on "excessive fimbriation" is not merely a desire to be "more authentic" but a realization that fimbriating complex charges makes them more difficult to identify. Indeed, in this case the visual effect to several people who viewed this was of an eccentric annulet enflamed, not two animate objects biting each other's tails enflamed. (LoAR 24 May 87, pp. 13-14)

Monster - Senmurv and Simurgh

[A simurgh (Persian peacock) displayed] The senmurv on the arms of Bahram the Resplendent is the older form, which is "Persian" in the truer sense dating back to the period before Christ. As the form of the bird [simurgh] is in fact a sort of peacock when it is in its close form, the descriptive has been added to avoid scribal confusion. (LoAR 31 Oct 87, p. 2)

Monster - Sleipnir

Despite the precedent for registering the eight-legged horse which was cited in the letter of intent, there was considerable feeling that a Sleipnir was not an appropriate charge for use in the Society, particularly with a name so suggestive of the Nordic pantheon. (LoAR 25 Jan 87, p. 19) (See also: LoAR 28 Feb 87, p. 22; LoAR 28 Nov 87, p. 9; LoAR 21 Feb 88, p. 11)

Monster - Unicorn

It is a long-standing policy that the name Rhiannon may not be coupled with horses or unicorns in view of Rhiannon's function as a horse goddess. (LoAR 27 Sep 86, p. 12) (See also: LoAR 25 Jan 87, p. 22)

The tincture of the [unicorn's] horn does not really contribute difference. (LoAR 22 Oct 89, p. 9)

While much heat and light over the difference between a unicornate pegasus and a winged unicorn has been generated over the years and [the commenter] is correct in stating that the one has been technically banned for some years while the other is allowed, we have a great deal of difficulty in justifying this distinction to ourselves or to submittors. The range of period depictions of unicorns range widely (although they are generally goatish or antelopish) and vary from period to period. A majority of the more recent (i.e., out of period) depictions are distinctly equine and that fits into the modern legendary rather well. The distinction in form probably does have validity in theory based on art and history. However, given the freedom with which we have created monsters in the Society by mixing and matching elements of period beasts and monsters, a ban on horned horses seems to be an excess of purism to say the least. The new rules allow formation of monsters on the analogy of period monsters as long as all the elements are clearly identifiable in the resulting monster, which is clearly the case in a horned horse or horned pegasus. If we allow creation of a unicornate natural sea horse, it is difficult to see why we should not allow a unicornate horse and blazon it as such. (LoAR 21 Jan 90, p. 9)

Monster - Yale

The yale as depicted here and in several period manuscripts differs from the heraldic antelope chiefly in the orientation of the horns. (LoAR 26 Feb 89, p. 18)

Moon

For purposes of difference a moon in her complement and a plate are functionally identical. (LoAR 25 Jan 87, p. 17)

[Moon in its complement] On the letter of intent the moons were blazoned as "increscent moons in their complement": there is no such thing. It is a matter of artistic license how the "man in the moon" is depicted: here it is as an increscent face superimposed on the round form of the moon. (LoAR 30 Oct 88, p. 6)

[A plate between a decrescent and an increscent] The three tertiaries are thematically unified, but the "phases of the moon" are not really period style. (LoAR 27 Aug 89, p. 22)

Mount

[A mount of six hillocks] Note that this mount is in the Italian fashion familiar from the arms of the late Pope Paul VI. (LoAR 28 Feb 87, p. 6)

Mullet

Given the traditional depiction of the mullet of six points in the Society, we felt that there was at least a minor point of difference from an estoile when primary charges were involved. (LoAR Jun 88, p. 1)

[On a pale four mullets, one, one and two] The "constellation" on the pale [is] not period style. (LoAR 27 Aug 89, p. 26)

The issue then becomes whether a visual difference exists between the compass stars and the normal mullet. As the compass star is really a "Society charge", the rules on charges not used in period heraldry then apply: "A charge ... will be considered different in type if its shape in normal depiction is significantly different." (Type Changes, X.4.e). Applying this test, a compass star is clearly different from a normal mullet: not only is there a distinct difference in number of rays and a resulting difference in orientation, the "greater and lesser" arrangement of the rays creates a completely different sort of outline. (LoAR 31 Dec 89, p. 30)

We cannot agree with [the submitting herald] that the mullet of four points should be considered a "form of cross". (LoAR 29 Apr 90, p. 7)

Long tradition in the Society has considered the compass star a charge in its own right separate in many respects from the standard mullet. As such it may have its own variants which we can blazon. (LoAR 29 Apr 90, p. 7)

A great deal of discussion [was occasioned] as to the relationship between the estoile and mullet in period and Society heraldry. While [one commenter] presented some interesting evidence that the two charges may have been interchangeable in period heraldry, there is a long tradition of their being considered a differencing element in Society heraldry as well as modern English heraldry. This is reflected in the fact that both Society ordinaries and Papworth list mullets and estoiles as separate charges.... Under certain circumstances, if diminished enough in size or modified in a non-standard manner there might be a visual coincidence between mullets and estoiles that would create a confusion.... Otherwise, we had to agree with those who felt that enough visual difference exists between the two charges for the purposes of Society heraldry. (LoAR 28 May 90, p. 12)

Mullety

[The submittor] must draw the upper portion of the field properly as mulletty, i.e., more evenly distributed. As drawn now, the design looks more like an attempt to depict a constellation ... which is not permitted as a charge in Society heraldry. (LoAR 28 Dec 86, p. 9)

Mushroom

[Sable, a fly agaric mushroom proper] As the mushroom is capped gules, this violates the rule of tincture. (LoAR 19 Dec 87, p. 18)

"Complete difference of charge" should [not] be accorded to two different types of mushroom proper: unless the tinctures are completely different only a weak minor point could be derived. (LoAR 23 Apr 88, p. 18)

 


N

Names - Abbreviations

The spelling on the submission was [Name] St. [Name]. We register the full name, not a scribal abbreviation (which is what St. is). Therefore, we have corrected the spelling. (LoAR 25 Jan 87, p. 13) (See also: LoAR 26 Apr 87, p. 5; LoAR 27 Sep 87, p. 4; LoAR 31 Oct 87, p. 4; LoAR 19 Dec 87, p. 8; LoAR 24 Jan 88, pp. 4-5; LoAR 30 Jul 89, p. 3)

Note that the fact that the name is registered in its proper form does not forbid the use of abbreviations by scribes where this is appropriate, both in names and other contexts, and in fact the use of period style ligatures and abbreviations should be encouraged in everyday use. (LoAR 24 Jan 88, p. 5)

Note that long tradition indicates that the Society registers the full form of the name, not a specific scribal abbreviation of it. (LoAR 31 Dec 89, p. 3) (See also: LoAR 26 Nov 89, p. 17)

Names - Anglo-Saxon

The usual Anglo-Saxon feminine patronymic ending was "dohtor". (LoAR 24 May 87, p. 8)

Names - Basque

At the September, 1986, meeting, this submission was placed in the pending file to await the results of research into the proper form of Basque names requested from a correspondent at the University of London. Since three months have passed with no adequate response to that request, fairness to the submittor demands that action be taken. Note that acceptance of this name should be taken as a special case, establishing no precedent for the formation of Basque names submitted in the future. (LoAR 28 Dec 86, pp. 4-5)

For the form [Name], which was stated to be Basque, no documentation was given. Therefore, we have substituted a period spelling given by Reaney for the family name from the town of [place] in France. Note that the pronunciation of the two names would be virtually identical. (LoAR 24 May 87, p. 5)

Names - Branch

[Shire of One Thousand Eyes (Pocatello, Idaho)] Almost without exception the commenting heralds felt this name was non-period in style. However, it is the sort of name which is not at all uncommon in the fantastic literature, period and modern, which also forms a background to our Society and therefore seems legitimate, if the populace of this group are prepared for the humorous jibes that will inevitably come their way. (LoAR 28 Dec 86, p. 5)

The addition of a single word is not sufficient difference between Society branches (NR20). Therefore, [Name]gate would not be sufficiently different from [Name]. Logic then would indicate that [Name] should not be sufficiently different from the already registered name of [Name]gate. (LoAR 28 Dec 86, pp. 19-20)

It has previously been ruled that translations of such generic names as these [Riversmeet, Aberafonydd] may be registered if the group with which it conflicts [by translation] gives permission. (LoAR 28 Nov 87, p. 11)

"There is a special allowance for SCA branches to use obsolete names for their territories, so an SCA branch actually in London could call itself Trinovantia -- but no one else may." Ironically, this group is in London, but the wrong one: London, Ontario. Given the mundane location, we suspect that the College would look favourably on a suitably modified name formed in the (late) period manner such as Nova Trinovantia. (LoAR Jul 88, p. 19)

Names - Change of

This was shown on the letter of intent as a new name in conjunction with a transfer of her tinctureless badge to her new persona. This is incorrect and could have confused the armorial.... Such transactions must be labelled as a change. When such a change is made, all armoury attached to the previous name will automatically be transferred to the new name unless specifically accompanied by a request for release or additional change. (LoAR 29 Apr 90, p. 2)

Names - Coined

As the "coined form" ... would, if it existed, be a diminutive of the [Name], it was not acceptable for registration. Instead, we have substituted the radical form ... itself, which is attested as a given name as early as 1180. (LoAR Aug 87, p. 7)

The given name was stated to be "the Irish name Rowan as it would be spelled by a French monk or priest after only hearing it once." Unfortunately, not only is this somewhat debatable, but this is also a documented period English spelling for the name of the French city of Rouen (Reaney, p. 296). Therefore, it cannot be accepted as a constructed variant. (LoAR Aug 87, p. 15)

While NR10a is somewhat ambiguous, the more general requirement of a primary language in NR3 also applies and there was prior precedent for applying the naming practises of the primary language to a made-up name. As the name was stated to be constructed according to Welsh practise, it had to be judged in those terms. [The principal herald] noted in the submission that medieval Welsh did not form dithematic names. If this is interpreted ... to mean that it does not form "mix and match" names as did Old English, for instance, this is correct.... We do feel that constructs in Welsh must be approached with a greater degree of care, not merely because of the requirements of mutation, but also because the dithematic constructs which are documented in period appear to have recoverable meaning: a name like "war peace", which is perfectly acceptable in the Germanic tradition, would apparently not have occurred.... We have been persuaded by additional evidence that the summarized evidence originally presented led us to conclude erroneously that the component portions of the names were not separable name elements in period Welsh. If the components appear in multiple Welsh names, then the name becomes considerably more plausible. We ... conclude that the new evidence has nudged it this side of "compatibility". (LoAR Jun 88, p. 13)

[Kavien] Although said to be a made-up name, it does not follow the naming practises of German, which appears to be the only identifiable language in the name: the ending is that of a participle and the only [similar] words we were able to find in German were imports from other languages.... The only commenter to find anything at all close to this form ... located it as a surname derived from a place name. All in all it fails to meet the requirements for a made-up name under the old rules and the strictures on Invented Names in the new rules (II.3). (LoAR 31 Dec 89, p. 6)

Names - Conflict

We tend to take a more conservative view of name conflicts from current events (i.e., after 1650) than most and generally would not be too concerned about industrial conflicts. However, in this case, where the individual [Thomas du Pont] appears in non-specialist paperback biographical dictionaries as well as dozens of books on industrial history of the early twentieth century and has his name plastered on more public structures in the mid-Atlantic than you could shake a stick at, we are inclined to be a bit more rigorous. (LoAR 29 Mar 87, p. 16)

The judgement as to which names will conflict clearly involves making a decision as to what the common use form of a formal name would be. To put it another way, although one or more elements of a name may be changed, would the name by which an individual would commonly be known ... be sufficiently alike as to cause confusion. Most people in the Society in usage (and often in court) drop place names of origin, no matter how integral they may be to someone's persona story.... In this case, the obvious result is that the common use forms for both names are [the same]. (LoAR 29 Mar 87, pp. 17-18)

Although the appearance and meaning were adequately different, the assonance brought this name into conflict with Edwin Bersark. Note that several local heralds and non-heralds felt that they would not have been able to tell certainly if Edwin Bersark or Ellin Berserkr were being summoned if they heard a reasonably competent herald shout the name across a tourney field. This seems an excellent touchstone for "aural conflict". (LoAR Aug 87, p. 10)

[William Robinson] This name provoked considerable discussion amongst the Laurel staff as to whether the number of famous individuals who bore a certain name materially affected the degree to which the name should be protected. It was our conclusion that it should not: there was more than one Richard Plantagenet, all of which were famous, and all should be protected. Thus this name is in conflict with [several famous Bill, William, and Will Robinsons]. (LoAR 30 Sep 89, p. 18)

The new rules are quite specific in stating that addition of one phrase when the names consist of three or fewer phrases do not conflict (V.2, p. 5). While the name [here] certainly will be considered presumptuous by some, the elements in the name are common enough that we cannot say that it "unmistakably" claims identity with the most famous Graham of all (V.5, p. 6). (Ed. Note: This is the sort of case that gives Laurel heartburn.) (LoAR 26 Nov 89, p. 3)

Under the old rules, [the commenting herald] would be correct in seeing this as a conflict by exact translation with the famous author James Baldwin. Under the new rules it is not: while "Baudoin" sounds enough like "Baldwin" to conflict by translation, "Jacobus" and "James" are even farther apart than the examples of "Mary" and "Miriam" used in the rules (Translation, V.4.b, p. 6). (LoAR 26 Nov 89, p. 8)

[Gopher Pursuivant] While tradition has (up to a point) protected IPOCery, under the new rules there is no conflict with the Order of the Mordant Gopher by the Addition of One Phrase Rule (V.2, p. 5). (LoAR 26 Nov 89, p. 24)

Under the Addition of One Phrase in the new rules, this is still not clear although both names have fewer than three phrases since the only difference is the addition of the adjective before the noun, which is not considered an independent phrase (V.2, p. 5). While one element as defined under Addition of Two Elements (V.3, p. 6) is added by the addition of [the adjective], the article and preposition specifically do not create difference. Addition of a surname here would carry it clear under both sets of rules. (LoAR 26 Nov 89, p. 38)

Based both on our intent and the discussions with Badger at the time we thrashed out the various rules, we decided that the notes on spelling variants, translations, etc. were amplifying in nature and do not override the primary definition of sufficient difference: "There must be a significant change to both the sound and appearance of one word to be considered significant." (LoAR 26 Nov 89, p. 41

[Geoffrey Thomas] Note that this name does not conflict with Geoffrey Thomas du Chateau Versoix under the new rules since "du Chateau Versoix" is considered to be a single phrase for the purposes of determining whether there are three or more phrases in each name. Since there is also the addition of this phrase, the two are clear. (LoAR 17 Jun 90, p. 10)

Names - Cross-gender

Cross-gender names are so well-established a tradition in the Society that it would be pedantic to object that the byname is masculine in form. However, ... Gaelic would normally demand the feminine form of the byname. (LoAR 25 Jan 87, p. 7)

Names - Diminutive

Since [Name] is a diminutive form with no evidence for period use as an independent name, we have registered the formal given name from which it was derived. (LoAR 29 Mar 87, p. 7) (See also: LoAR 29 Mar 87, p. 20; LoAR 14 Jun 87, p. 5; LoAR 28 Nov 87, p. 3)

Although a diminutive, numerous period sources show [Name] well-established as an independent form. (LoAR 24 May 87, p. 5)

Although Yonge shows Karina as a Danish form of Katharine, the tables in which the name appears contain a number of forms which are documented diminutives (e.g. Reta and Greta) and other evidence indicates that Carina or Karina is a diminutive form. (LoAR 26 Jul 87, p. 1)

As the "coined form" ... would, if it existed, be a diminutive of the [Name], it was not acceptable for registration. (LoAR Aug 87, p. 7)

Diminutives are permitted under the new rules. (LoAR 26 Nov 89, p. 5) (See also: LoAR 26 Nov 89, p. 6)

Names - Documentation

For both name elements no documentation was given beyond page references to relatively non-standard volumes not available to the Laurel staff at this point.... [A] holding name has been issued and the submitted name held pending the receipt of more solid documentation (I will accept Xeroxes from the sources cited, even though they be not the best). (LoAR 26 Oct 86, p. 8)

The name Moriah has been returned previously ... on the grounds that it is a Biblical place name, the mountain where Abraham prepared to sacrifice Isaac, and not a form used in period as a given name. No evidence has been presented to contravene that precedent. (LoAR 28 Dec 86, p. 17)

Note that solid evidence for the use of the form Lucina as a given name in period was derived from Withycombe (p. 200, under Lucy). It should not be taken as precedent for the use of the names of stars as given names in the Society. (LoAR 25 Jan 87, p. 14)

The name ... was documented as a feminine name solely from Kolatch, which is notorious for its lack of interest in drawing distinctions between traditional and modern names. (LoAR 25 Jan 87, p. 19) (See also: LoAR 26 Oct 86, p. 7; LoAR 26 Apr 87, p. 13)

She enclosed a Xerox of her birth certificate: that's documentation! (LoAR 28 Feb 87, p. 6)

Insufficient documentation was provided to demonstrate that [Name] was a period given name in Serbian or any other language. Documentation in support of the formation and meaning of the byname would also be helpful. (LoAR 28 Feb 87, p. 22)

We do not normally register diminutive forms for the given name unless there is documentation that it was used independently in period. (LoAR 29 Mar 87, p. 20)

[Genet] Two etymologies were given for the given name, neither of which is acceptable for period usage. [One] involves creation of a new "flower name" and such have long since been barred from Society usage. The alternative meaning ... is not, so far as we can determine, used in period as a given name. (LoAR 26 Apr 87, p. 11)

The [Norse] citations noted ... unfortunately are all from the Penguin English translations, which are notoriously random in their forms: although they seldom obscure the given names and patronymics often take modern English forms or are compounded of modern and period forms. (LoAR 26 Apr 87, p. 12)

Although a diminutive, numerous period sources show [Name] well-established as an independent form. (LoAR 24 May 87, p. 5)

For the form [Name], which was stated to be Basque, no documentation was given. Therefore, we have substituted a period spelling given by Reaney for the family name from the town ... in France. Note that the pronunciation of the two names would be virtually identical. (LoAR 24 May 87, p. 5)

By the submittor's own documentation the given name was that of one of the sons of Genghis Khan. Such names, e.g. Genghis, Temujin, etc., have in the past been returned as unique names failing documentation to demonstrate their more general use in Mongolian society. (LoAR 24 May 87, p. 12)

Arguments from plausibility must give way to actual evidence ... in this case, a theoretical radical usage must give way to actual diminutive usage. (LoAR 14 Jun 87, p. 6)

The only documentation provided in support of the [byname] ... were a few lines ... from the ... gift shop proprietor cited as the source for the translation. Since no one in the College could come up with any supporting documentation for anything similar..., some more substantial documentation must be required from the submittor. (LoAR 26 Jul 87, p. 10)

Documentation is required for period use when a name is demonstrably a place name in period. (LoAR 26 Jul 87, pp. 10-11)

O Corrain and Maguire (Gaelic Personal Names, p. 162) ... notes two usages of the given name, both apparently for non-humans.... Evidence for the name's use by humans is required. (LoAR Aug 87, p. 13)

Arianrhod was the Welsh moon goddess and, failing evidence for human use of the name in period, may not be used in the Society. (LoAR Aug 87, p. 13)

The explanation offered by the submittor for the given name on the basis of Provencal orthography is not compelling, particularly since [Name] is [a] Cornish common noun.... This being so, our rules demand some evidence for its use as a given name in period. (LoAR Aug 87, p. 15)

The given name was stated to be "the Irish name Rowan as it would be spelled by a French monk or priest after only hearing it once." Unfortunately, not only is this somewhat debatable, but this is also a documented period English spelling for the name of the French city of Rouen (Reaney, p. 296). Therefore, it cannot be accepted as a constructed variant. (LoAR Aug 87, p. 15)

The ... extremely lengthy appeal covered several points and was copiously documented with extracts from several genealogical and heraldic works.... It is a pity that so much of her documentation supported the original return....

Documentation was submitted to support the existence of [Name] as a surname and appeal was made to the familiar Camden citation as evidence that surnames were used in period. However, precedent reasserted by Master Baldwin ... (December, 1984) has reaffirmed that names used solely as surnames in period may not be used as given names: Camden notes an anomaly peculiar to late sixteenth century England and we must draw our general rules from the common usage, not the anomaly. She needs to have a given name.

The submittor states that the Campbells were actually lords of Lochow or of some other seat and not of Argyll. Unfortunately, her own documentation indicates that Sir Duncan Campbell of Lochow, created Lord Campbell in 1445 and chief of the clan, assumed the designation of Argyll. The use of the name Campbell of Argyll in modern mundane usage is tantamount to a claim of kinship with the chief and it will be so taken by the bulk of members of the Society, causing offense to some. (LoAR Aug 87, pp. 15-16)

Insufficient documentation was provided to determine the grammatical accuracy of the bynames or their plausibility in the form [submitted]. Unfortunately, the intent of the submittor as to the intended meaning of the byname is unclear. (LoAR 18 Sep 88, p. 16)

The documentation of the given name was from [Evelyn] Wells, which is not a very good source. (LoAR 26 Mar 89, p. 1)

Arthur's Etymological Dictionary of Family and Christian Names ... is not a reliable source, being a rather old volume of the "what to name your baby" and "what does you family name mean" variety. (LoAR 30 Apr 89, p 2)

Names appearing in Katherine Kurtz' novels are not automatically acceptable for Society use. (LoAR 30 Apr 89, p. 4)

[Documenting mundane name] The College is quite reasonable and, although a photocopy of a birth certificate is the usual simple proof in such cases, a copy of a driver's license or other such "proof" item would be acceptable. (LoAR 21 May 89, p. 18)

Despite our high respect for [Name] and her expertise in [language] (it's what she does for a living), we have to have some idea of why she thinks it is O.K. to register this name form. Specifically we need to have documentation of the meaning and construction of the elements in this name, information not included on the letter of intent or on the forms. (LoAR 30 Sep 89, p. 14)

The name "Aegir" is not Celtic, as stated on the letter of intent, it is the name of the Norse god of the sea and, as such, is not eligible for use in the Society unless it has been documented to be used by normal human beings in period. Such documentation has not been forthcoming. (LoAR 30 Sep 89, p. 14)

Under the old rules, the admissibility of the name ... formed on a [language] model from a place name in a role playing game would have been extremely arguable. Under the new rules, which do not have a "source test", the fact that the structure is compatible with [language] naming practise makes the name admissible. (LoAR 31 Dec 89, p. 4)

The documentation for the appeal includes a resubmission of the lengthy persona story to which the submittor is clearly very attached, but persona stories are irrelevant to registration and in this case the story owes less to period sources than nineteenth-century fairy tale redaction. (LoAR 31 Dec 89, p. 26)

The given names were documented form a book by Eric Partridge called Name This Child: A Dictionary of Modern British and American Given or Christian Names. This title alone casts some doubt on its value as evidence! Virtually no dates are given for any names, which is problematic for our purposes since many last names are included as valid given names which were not known in period as given names (in a few cases, possibly not even as surnames in period). (LoAR 31 Mar 90, p. 3)

The source for the given name (Loughead) is very unreliable. (LoAR 29 Apr 90, p. 15)

Names - Elvish

The commentors who noted the precedent that allowed Sindarin names from Tolkien but not Quenya names to be used were correct. There seems no really compelling reason to make this distinction: both linguistic sets derived from Tolkien's lectures on medieval linguistics and both use period elements to form names in a period manner, albeit of a language that did not actually exist in period. The basis of the distinction seems to have been a feeling that "High Elven" would have been used only by Elves and "Low Elven" could be used by Men and other races and thus that Quenya names were a claim to Elvish origins. This seems an unjustifiable conclusion and one that is too restrictive, given the common derivation of both languages from period linguistic morphemes and morphological practises. [Quenya allowed] (LoAR 28 May 90, p. 4)

Names - English

Old English did not randomly pull elements from its linguistic resources for name construction: there was a fixed and rather restrictive pool of elements in use. (LoAR 21 Feb 88, p. 14)

Names - Epithet

From his own documentation "[Name]" appears to be an epithet rather than a given name ("the [Name]"). This is not permissible. (LoAR 28 Feb 87, p. 17)

The epithet "de Flora" is in fact precisely the sort of epithet that occurred in medieval Latin when it attempted to render vernacular place name or attribute epithets in official or literary documents (e.g., the twelfth-century theologian Joachim de Floris whose works were condemned by Thomas Aquinas). (LoAR 29 Mar 87, p. 6)

[(Name) of Sea Change Eyes] It was the consensus of opinion in the College that this epithet transcended even the relatively relaxed standards for "fantasy-style" epithets in the Society. Not only is an article lacking before the noun formation, as one would expect, but the term "sea-change" is itself a noun, not an adjective, and is not used in this manner. (LoAR 27 Nov 88, p. 22)

[(Name) le Fey] Although [the principal herald] provided at least one period citation for the use of "le Fey", not every name usage which was permitted in period is allowed in the Society because of the associations that a majority of the populace would place on the name.... In this case, the feeling among the commentors and Laurel staff was just too great that the populace would interpret this byname as a claim to non-human origins. (LoAR 21 May 89, p. 21)

The submission was made with a comma before the ... epithet. The Society does not generally register extraneous appositives (that is the meaning of the comma: to separate the epithet from the "real name") so we have dropped the punctuation. (LoAR 25 Feb 90, p. 7)

Names - Fantasy Name Allowance

The position that the existence of a name in a piece of fiction from a pre-technological era automatically compels acceptance by the College is contrary to a long tradition in the College of Arms.... This is one of the oldest "allowances" and is restrictive rather than permissive. In other words, it was placed in the rules at the time to prohibit certain forms of fantasy names, not to legitimize fantasy names as a category. Indeed, the wording of the current rules specifically says that fantasy names may be accepted, not that they must be and there is a long tradition of requiring proof of compatibility for the use of such names. For as long as we can remember, names drawn from fantasy have had to obey other strictures (e.g., the ban on names which include titles or claims of rank) and this clearly is still the case. On the basis of [the principal herald's] thesis, the College would be required to register "Smurf", if an enterprising fantasy writer named one of his or her characters that (formally or informally). Somehow we doubt that is what is intended! (LoAR 30 Apr 89, p. 17)

Names - Finnish

The household name is formed from a noun + noun combination, which is common in Finnish and perfectly acceptable. However, all our sources showed all the combined forms involving "taivas" (sky) retaining the "i" of the noun stem in the combined form so we have modified the submitted spelling ... to reflect this. (LoAR 28 Dec 86, p. 6)

Names - Flower

"Heather" is a modern flower name which would be acceptable only if the submittor bore the name mundanely. This has been the case ever since 1983 when Wilhelm von Schlüssel specifically cited it as a post-period "flower name" in ruling against the use of "flower names". (LoAR 26 Mar 89, p. 19)

Names - French

Neither a "y" for an "i" nor a "k" for a "c" substitution occurs in French. (LoAR 27 Sep 87, p. 12)

[de Fay] This is a documented French family name that alludes to an abode by a beech tree, not the form with the simple article (e.g., "le Fee") which has been returned for appearance of claim to non-human origins. (LoAR 30 Sep 89, p. 3)

Names - Gaelic

[T]he name Maire was hardly ever used in the period before the seventeenth century, there being a general feeling in Irish circles that the name was too sacred for everyday use. (In fact, the name Mary only really became popular in Ireland in the nineteenth century when it was the usual anglicising of the old Irish name "Mor".) In period circumlocutions like "Gilla Mhuire" (servant of Mary) were commoner so that a patronymic like "mac Giolla Mhuire" would actually be more accurate [than macMhuire] for period Ireland. (LoAR 27 Sep 86, p. 7)

The name Rowan is the standard Anglicization of the Irish name Ruadhan (O Corrain and Maguire, p. 157). (LoAR 29 Mar 87, p. 5)

The genitive of the masculine personal name, which shows possession or descent, usually aspirates in Scots Gaelic where this is possible. This phenomenon is obscured in some modern sources ... but is regular in older texts.... (An irreverent sociological theory from one of the Laurel staff: the exceptions to the aspiration of the genitive of the proper name after a patronymic particle are more frequent when the individual is male suggesting that, while daughters were always property, sons only sometimes were!) (LoAR 29 Mar 87, pp. 9-10)

If [a name] can be prefixed by the patronymic particle Mac, it can be prefixed by the more generalized particle "O". (LoAR 24 May 87, p. 9)

It would appear that the form Eirianwen is a modern backformation on the analogy of the period name Arianwen. (LoAR Aug 87, p. 10) [Returned for this combined with problems with the byname]

O Corrain and Maguire (Gaelic Personal Names, p. 162) ... notes two usages of the given name, both apparently for non-humans.... Evidence for the name's use by humans is required. (LoAR Aug 87, p. 13)

The normal position for adjectives in Irish is following the nouns they modify. (LoAR 24 Jan 88, p. 4)

To use the Gaelic particle "ni" a properly modified Gaelic form of the [Anglicized] name would be required. (LoAR 21 Feb 88, p. 1)

As the remainder of the name is Anglicized, the Gaelic preposition na seemed decidedly out of place so the lingua franca preposition [of] has been substituted. (LoAR of 23 Apr 88, p. 1)

[Shannon] This Anglicized form seems to be associated virtually exclusively with the river Shannon (or the Airport!). Therefore, we have substituted the similarly pronounced period form [Seanan] suggested ... on the letter of intent. LoAR Aug 88, p. 11)

Names - General

The submitted middle name ..., which was stated to be made-up, has been dropped since our rules demand that manufactured names match the dominant language of the name and this seems compatible with neither [the language of the given] nor [language of the surname]. (LoAR 27 Sep 86, p. 3)

The occupational byname ... has been dropped since it was the consensus of opinion in the College that this fell under the ban on conjoining titles or honourifics with a place name. He may be [Name] the [Occupation] or [Name] of [Place], but not [Name] the [Occupation] of [Place] (while in "real life" hermit might not have been a title or honour, in the world of the period romances upon which so much of our ethos is based it frequently was used as a title as much as vicar or priest was in period legal documents. (LoAR 26 Oct 86, pp. 2-3)

Note that Master Baldwin, in his letter for the 18 May meeting indicated that [the submittor] would have to register a badge to protect her name. This was erroneous: even if it had not been attached to a badge or registered as such, it would be eligible for protection under NR15b "The College of Arms reserves the right to protect the unregistered names of past monarchs and great officers." (LoAR 26 Oct 86, p. 4)

Kolatch is notoriously unreliable as a source for period names. (LoAR 26 Oct 86, p. 7)

The Rules require that any common noun be specifically documented in use as a given name before it may be used. The use of animal names in general in period Jewish life is demonstrated by the documentation, but not this particular name and ... this [one] is considerably less likely than some. (LoAR 28 Dec 86, p. 18)

The addition or removal of a single adjective or adjectival phrase, such as a patronymic, is not adequate to difference a name (NR7). Note that the addition of a single secondary patronymic in Celtic languages such as Welsh or Gaelic contributes little difference since in colloquial usage the name formation tends to be a given name plus a single patronymic even if a further patronymic appears in formal documents. (LoAR 25 Jan 87, p. 21)

By the submittor's own evidence "[Name]" is not a given name, but rather is derived from a descriptive.... He needs a given name. (LoAR Aug 87, p. 14)

Adding an undocumented suffix form [‘d’] to an out-of-period name does not make an acceptable Society name. (LoAR 23 Apr 88, p. 8)

The fact that the name was registered previously in the Society is more or less irrelevant with regard to [Name]: at the time when the name ... was registered (1975), the forms did not even have a space for name documentation! (LoAR 23 Apr 88, p. 14)

Whether the overall effect of the "given name" is intrusively modern is admittedly a judgement call: on either side some element of the subjective must be present.... The determination that the name was excessively modern was based on "test exposure" to a fairly large sampling of gentles in the street (i.e., those not members of the College of Arms who uniformly had problems with the name. [Registered for other reasons.] (LoAR Jul 88, p. 3)

[Hartshorn-dale] [The principal herald] has provided late evidence (title page dated 1600!) to support the use of the hyphen in geographical names in period. However, this is definitely an anomaly and the name would be far better spelled without the hyphen as one word or two, as it most likely would have been spelled in period. (LoAR Aug 88, p. 10)

While the locative would not normally pass under the current rules, there is overwhelming precedent for allowing spouses and children of those with registered bynames to use those bynames, even if they are no longer "legal". (LoAR Aug 88, p. 15)

As this is a common noun, under NR10 compelling evidence for this name used in period as a given name must be provided. As we have often commented before, the fact that a name with meaning is used in one language does not mean that it will be used in another. For instance, although the actual meaning of "Athelstan" is "noble stone", we would not allow someone to register "Noble Stone Jones", even though Old English is the same language pool as Middle and Modern English! While there is a great deal of evidence that a number of primitive cultures have used totemic animals for names derived from transferred epithets, the use of names like Arthur, Bjorn, Ursula, etc. do not necessarily demonstrate that "Bear" would be used in English. (LoAR 27 Aug 89, p. 22)

While the "conflict by translation" clause in the current rules has been localized in the group names section, personal names which have been direct translations of Society names and/or the names of famous individuals have been returned for conflict for years when they have been noticed. A result of the increasing knowledge of foreign naming practises over the past decade may be a slightly increased probability of such conflicts being noticed, but they are not a novelty. Indeed, members of the Laurel staff can remember Eastern submissions being returned as direct translations of Society names during the tenure of Master Wilhelm. (LoAR 27 Aug 89, p. 25)

Unfortunately, [the submittor] allows no changes whatsoever to his name so that the minor problems with the grammar of the patronymic can be corrected. (LoAR 31 Dec 89, p. 19)

While the name will be slightly tautological if the Barony uses the common reference "Companions" to describe members ("Companions to the Order of the Companions of the [Name]"), it is legal. (LoAR 28 May 1990, p. 1)

Names - Geographic

[Name] is the name of an Irish lake and there is no evidence that geographic names were used as personal names in period.... Though there are a number of geographic entities in Ireland that bear names which were used in period as given names, either for humans or non-human figures of legend, in every case that we have been able to find, the geographic name is derived from the individual, not the reverse. (LoAR 30 Oct 88, p. 3)

Names - German

The preposition "von" is not used in German with an occupational name. (LoAR 28 Dec 86, p. 9)

There is [an] intriguing little volume by one Roland Mulch which rejoices in the typical German scholarly name of Arnsburger Personnennamen: Untersuchungen zum Namenmaterial aus Arnsburger Urkunden vom 13. - 16. Jahrhundert. Among the joys this includes are a name list of given names that appear ar Arnsburg, by date ... and citations of both given names and family names in context. Among the gentles that appear are Clas Gorre (1478), Clas Gumpracht (1424), Claus Gonter (1491) and Claus Heytges (1529). As these citations are drawn from official documents, they would seem to serve as hard evidence that Klaus was an independent name in period (the use of the initial "c" instead of "k" is a regular feature of the local orthography). (LoAR 26 Apr 87, p. 6)

Names - Given

The original submission of the name change [to "Thorin [patronymic]"] was returned because the name Thorin was held by Laurel to be an exclusively dwarven name both in Tolkien and in Norse myth and therefore not eligible for use in the Society. The submittor has presented an impressive array of arguments in support of his position that the name is in fact compatible with the period ambience which we are trying to create and that the bulk of the populace would not (and in fact do not) feel that he was claiming dwarven descent by using the name. Taken by themselves, they add only plausibility to the argument that the name could have been used in period for a human. The existence of the Irish patronymic form "O Torain" cited by MacLysaght (Surnames of Ireland, p. 288), which would derive from a nominative form of "Torin" argues that it was actually used. Therefore, acceptance of this name should not be taken as a general precedent for non-human names in the Society. (LoAR 27 Sep 86, p. 2)

The name [Name] has been returned previously ... on the grounds that it is a Biblical place name, [a] mountain ... and not a form used in period as a given name. (LoAR 28 Dec 86, p. 17)

"[Name]" appears to be an epithet rather than a given name ("the [Name]"). This is not permissible. (LoAR 28 Feb 87, p. 17)

Kendra long since joined the select list of names which, like Fiona and Gwyneth, have been deemed "compatible", although they cannot be documented in period. (LoAR 26 Apr 87, p. 6)

[Genet] Two etymologies were given for the given name, neither of which is acceptable for period usage. [One] involves creation of a new "flower name" and such have long since been barred from Society usage. The alternative meaning ... is not, so far as we can determine, used in period as a given name. (LoAR 26 Apr 87, p. 11)

While the rules clearly agree ... that documentation is required for period use when a name is demonstrably a place name in period (which Brandon is, as early as 975!), the consensus of opinion in the College was that it would be reasonable to add Brandon to the handful of out-of-period names (Fiona, Corwin, etc.) that are accepted in Society use since only an "a" and "o" separate it from the acceptable "Brendan" and the pronunciation of the two names in the dialects that predominate in modern America are nearly identical. (LoAR 26 Jul 87, pp. 10-11)

"[Name]" is not a given name, but rather is derived from a descriptive.... He needs a given name. (LoAR Aug 87, p. 14)

The name Trevor is a Welsh place name (generally spelled "Trefor" in Welsh) which does not seem to have been used as a given name until the middle of the nineteenth century. (LoAR Aug 87, p. 15)

[Aelf] A search through Redin [Studies in Uncompounded Personal Names In Old English] ..., revealed that he cites (p. 3) at least one "Aelf diacon" (i.e., "Aelf the deacon") who appears in the documents included in Kemble's edition Codex diplomaticus aevi Saxonici. Given the source and the occupation of the person bearing the name, we must assume this to be a legitimate formal use of the name by a human! (LoAR 29 May 88, p. 16)

[Aislinn] It is not necessary to support the given name on the grounds of "compatibility": it has amply been documented as a period given name in the past. (LoAR Aug 88, p. 1)

[Howard] This is a case where Withycombe, who feels that the use of "Howard" as a given name is of relatively recent origin (p. 156), would seem to be in error. Reaney (Dictionary of British Surnames, p. 184) cites numerous period instances of its use as a given name occurring as early as Domesday Book. (LoAR Aug 88, p. 6)

As [Name] is the name of an Irish lake and there is no evidence that geographic names were used as personal names in period, we have modified this to the almost identically pronounced Irish given name [Name]. (LoAR 30 Oct 88, p. 3)

The ban on the use of surnames as given names goes back well into the last decade to the tenure of Mistress Karina and has been reaffirmed by every Laurel since.... The citation from Camden with regard to the practise "in late years" of surnames as given names has been considered on a number of occasions by the College of Arms. The standing precedent was set by master Baldwin in December, 1984, in the case of Dunham Wycliffe when it was decided that the Camden citation referred to a late and anomalous practise and that the use of surnames as given names should be limited to surnames actually shown to have been used as given names in period. (LoAR 26 Nov 89, p. 31) (See also: LoAR Aug 87, pp. 15-16)

Names - Group

There are problems with the use of the term "Borough" in the context of the current territorial structure. Since it has previously been registered for non-territorial "College/Canton" type groups in the East without official status, it cannot really be recognised as an official designation equivalent (unless or until all "unofficial boroughs" either become official or their registered items are released). On the other hand, ... the term is not really appropriate for a household or other non-territorial group. (LoAR 31 Dec 89, pp. 21-22)

Names - Hebrew and Yiddish

The submittor's own documentation indicated that "min" in an "inseparable preposition" from Hebrew. By our rules this means that the place name would have either to be Hebraic or be from a language which demonstrably merged in this manner. (LoAR 28 Feb 87, p. 24)

The name was stated ... to be Yiddish, based on evidence from Kolatch, but that source includes many modern Israeli names which would not have been used even a century ago. Some documentation must be provided for the use of the two name elements in period. (LoAR 26 Apr 87, p. 13)

Names - Holding

I was extremely distressed by the number of submissions with acceptable armoury that I was compelled to return in their entirety ... because the submission forms specifically stated that no changes, however minor, could be made to the spelling or grammar of the name. Unless there is some indication that a holding name would be acceptable, I am compelled to take statements that no changes may be made to the name literally and return the submission as a whole.... There are several options open to consulting heralds to resolve this situation: advise submittors not to prohibit changes to the name, request them to state on the forms if a holding name is acceptable, or to ... add a line to the forms requesting the submittor to indicate if formation of a holding name is not acceptable. Of all the options, the latter is probably the most satisfactory and I heartily recommend it to all Kingdoms. (I hate returning a beautiful armorial submission because of technical problems with the name!) (CL 20 Mar 87, p. 2)

Names - Household

[House (name of a town)] The town ... is an actual period town, one of no small size even in Domesday times. [Household name returned] (LoAR Aug 88, p. 20)

Effective immediately, the registration of a household name will not carry protection against infringement by others who may, through use of the name in their personal names, claim to be members of the household. Household names will continue to be protected against infringement by the names of official groups, orders, heraldic titles, other household names, etc. For example, the name of House Smith would not prevent registration of the name Peter Smith, but would prevent registration of House Green Smith, the Order of the Iron Smith and the title of Poor Smith Herald. (CL 20 May 89, p. 6)

The new rules have dropped the specification of conflict where no presumption is involved, a step that made sense when the household name no longer affect[s] use of personal names. (LoAR 26 Nov 89, p. 25)

 


N (Continued)

Names - Irish

As [Name] is the name of an Irish lake and there is no evidence that geographic names were used as personal names in period, we have modified this to the almost identically pronounced Irish given name [Name].... Though there are a number of geographic entities in Ireland that bear names which were used in period as given names, either for humans or non-human figures of legend, in every case that we have been able to find, the geographic name is derived from the individual, not the reverse. (LoAR 30 Oct 88, p. 3)

Names - Japanese

[(Name) (Name)-no-Okami] By the submittor's own documentation, the name Okami is a family name rather than a given name. While many family names, particularly those involving totemic beasts also appear as elements in given names, not all such names exist as given names in themselves. In fact, this appears to be the exception rather than the rule.... Additionally, as several commenters pointed out, the final two syllables in practical pronunciation, would be almost indistinguishable from "no-kami" which is the approved Japanese equivalent for "Lord" in the Society. This being so, the collocation should be rigorously avoided. Also, the passages provided by the submittor from Japanese Names and How to Read Them indicate that the "no" element would not be written in a name construction of family name plus clan name plus personal name. (LoAR 27 Sep 86, p. 12)

Some commenters raised the issue of the suffix "-ko" as potentially a reserved title suffix indicating a prince or duke. However, substantial evidence has been presented that the suffix itself should not be reserved. I.V. Gillis in the preface to Japanese Personal Names says "Women's ordinary personal names, are commonly written in hiragana, but more formally with Chinese characters as with men. These names are usually short, consisting of but one or two syllables, rarely three or more. The diminutive ko is often suffixed. . ." (LoAR 26 Oct 86, p. 4)

Names - "Joke"

It is Laurel's conviction that the precedent of "Decrease Mather", which was registered, sets a fairly wide latitude for names that play on the meaning and context of their elements in this manner. This name does not really go beyond those wide boundaries. Also, ... we do not by tradition ban anachronistic names. (When a Viking can sit next to an Elizabethan lady at high table, it would probably be a futile effort.) (LoAR 30 Sep 89, p. 3)

Names - Latin

While [it] is correct ... that period orthography is often variable, Latin is much less so.... [Name] is a regular third declension noun and tends to maintain the standard endings with a fair amount of rigidity, although the other portions of the name may vary quite a bit. (LoAR Aug 87, p. 13)

Caesius, which is a cognomen or nickname, would have been preceded by a praenomen or given name and a gentile or clan name in the classical period. However, such two element names as this were relatively common in the late medieval and Renaissance period amongst those who would emulate the classical learning, whilst lacking it. Specifically, Caesius came to be regarded as equivalent to a given name (like Vergil and Ovid, etc.) due in part to the Caesius Bassus to whom Persius dedicated one of his works. (LoAR Aug 87, p. 16)

Names - Mundane Name Allowance

The name was submitted as [Diminutive Name].... We have substituted the non-diminutive form of the name. Although he may be commonly called [Diminutive Name], the presupposition is that his legal given name is [Name] or some other full name. (LoAR 25 Jan 87, p. 5)

NR10 notes with regard to a mundane name used as a Society name under the mundane names exemption that "it must still be a recognized name. Some names, such as Moon Unit, are in the gray area between these rules and judgement will be exercised on appropriateness." In this case, [Name] is, both in period and today, perceived as a famous place name and is not a recognized personal name. (LoAR 25 Jan 87, p. 17)

While this name [Andrew] undoubtedly violates the spirit of the law requiring a modification of the mundane name [Andy], it clearly adheres to its letter. (LoAR 24 May 87, p. 6)

NR12 requires that the name which seeks an exemption by virtue of its being the mundane name must be used as [the] portion of the name "corresponding" to the mundane name element, i.e. first name to first name, last name to last name, etc. (LoAR 26 Jul 87, p. 9) (See also: LoAR 27 Sep 87, p. 12)

The exception for mundane names in the Rules for Submission applies to the actual mundane name, not to a supposed variant or to a translation. (LoAR 27 Sep 87, p. 8)

[Dublin] "The stated intention of NR12 is to make allowance for the submittor who bears what is now thought of as a given name but in period was only a surname." ... This is not the case with Dublin.... Clearly, the "modern" effect here is so disruptive that the leniency granted to mundane names which will not overly disrupt the medieval ambience of the Society cannot be allowed in this case. [Registered on appeal for parallel with period Irish given "Dubhlan", Jul 88] (LoAR 28 Nov 87, p. 7)

NR11 specified that a submittor's Society name may not be identical in sound or spelling to his mundane name. (LoAR Aug 88, p. 16)

To take advantage of the mundane name allowance, a name must be in the same relative position it occupies in the mundane name.... This ruling has been repeatedly affirmed under several Laurels. (LoAR 30 Apr 89, p. 15)

If the submittor's actual legal name is [Name], then he should be able to provide [documentation] easily.... If it is not [Name], then he is not entitled to the leniency of the "mundane name allowance". (LoAR 21 May 89, p. 18)

Names - Non-Human

[de Fay] This is a documented French family name that alludes to an abode by a beech tree, not the form with the simple article (e.g., "le Fee") which has been returned for appearance of claim to non-human origins. (LoAR 30 Sep 89, p. 3)

[of Evenstar] The byname raised a number of twitches with the College with its overtones of non-human origin. (LoAR 31 Dec 89, p. 21)

Names - Norse and Scandinavian

Since the submittor indicated that the name should be Old Norse, I have modified the patronymic [(Name)datter] to the proper Old Norse form [(Name)dottir]. (LoAR 27 Sep 86, p. 2)

The elements in the given name could not be documented as name elements, rather than independent words and the period Scandinavian languages, where they were not "borrowing" Biblical names, generally were like Old German, Old English and Old Norse in drawing "prothemes" and "deuterothemes" from a fixed pool of words. (LoAR 28 Dec 86, p. 15)

Unfortunately, "t" is not interchangeable with the character transliterated as "th" in Old Norse, the language specifically stated to be the language of intent. The submittor clearly indicated that he wished the second part of the name to mean "Thor" so the "th" consonant must be used. (LoAR 25 Jan 87, p. 19)

This is, unfortunately, a case where context makes this name unacceptable. Thora is a perfectly good Norse theophoric name and has been registered in the past. The submittor also provided maps showing that Asgardur is, on modern maps at least, a location in Iceland.... However, to almost everyone in the Society Asgard (Old Norse Asgardr) means but one thing: the home of the gods in the Scandinavian pantheon. This is just not an acceptable "home town" for someone in the Society. That this place name is combined with a name which differs by only one letter from that of one of the most prominent of the Aesir only makes the twitches produced by the name more pronounced. (LoAR 29 Mar 87, p. 22)

The [Norse] citations noted ... unfortunately are all from the Penguin English translations, which are notoriously random in their forms: although they seldom obscure the given names and patronymics often take modern English forms or are compounded of modern and period forms. (LoAR 26 Apr 87, p. 12)

The definite article is suffixed to the noun in Norwegian. (LoAR 27 Nov 88, p. 2)

In October, 1988 ... Laurel stated "we would dearly like to see some clear period documentation for the genitive form of "Bjorns", but have not thus far been presented with any. [Some] have responded to this challenge ... in providing period examples from Sveriges Medeltida Personnama (col. 318-326, 343-346). This compilation of period personal names from Swedish sources contains dates for each documented form. This tome documents such period genitive forms as "Biornar", "Biorns", and "Byorns", showing the precise sort of alternations of form for which Laurel had asked ("Biorns" is shown as early as 1360). The feminine patronymic form is demonstrated from the fourteenth century as well ("Marghet Bjronsdotter" from 1368, "Cecilia Biornsdoter" from 1377, etc.). (LoAR 26 Feb 89, p. 9)

While there is a tendency in modern sources to apply the term Scylding to the Danes in general, when distinguishing them from the other "Viking" peoples, the term more properly applies to the early Danish royal house ... and it is in this sense that it would be most commonly interpreted by a member of our Society. (LoAR 21 Feb 88, p. 11) [Name returned]

[Bakersdatter] There is significant doubt about the use of occupational surnames formed with the feminine patronymic particle in period Scandinavian languages and the submission gives no evidence to support this. (LoAR 23 Apr 88, p. 14)

Names - Offensive

We have been forced to the conclusion that the name ... has become so notorious and controversial that it cannot be registered to anyone at this time.... There is ample precedent for finding against a submission because of its historical associations in the mundane sphere. It seems unreasonable and unwise to dismiss our own history as being of lesser value and less likely to carry the seeds of offense.... No compromise appears possible between the parties and it is clear that the use of [Name] is causing the same sort of disruption/offense usually associated with the sort of mundane items which have been refused registration because of their mundane historical associations. (LoAR 25 Feb 90, pp. 17-18)

This name caused a certain amount of controversy since it is by no means clear that "Jesus" was used by ordinary individuals in period and there is some evidence from Dauzat that it may have been "taboo" during the medieval period. (LoAR 29 Apr 90, p. 3)

Names - Patronymic

The addition or removal of a single adjective or adjectival phrase, such as a patronymic, is not adequate to difference a name (NR7). Note that the addition of a single secondary patronymic in Celtic languages such as Welsh or Gaelic contributes little difference since in colloquial usage the name formation tends to be a given name plus a single patronymic even if a further patronymic appears in formal documents. (LoAR 25 Jan 87, p. 21)

The form of the patronymic is not correct since the particle [ap] is Welsh and "[Name]" purely English. (LoAR 28 Feb 87, p. 22)

Both my predecessors have with great consistency upheld the rule that both elements of a patronymic name must be derived from the same language or a language combination that would demonstrably have occurred (e.g., "mac" plus an English given name form in the Lowlands of Scotland). (LoAR 29 Mar 87, p. 19)

The use of the Norman French patronymic [fitz] with an English occupational name [Smith] finds no support. (LoAR 26 Apr 87, p. 2)

While there is evidence that the "-ovna" ending is only used with the father's name (i.e., metronymics of general ancestral names are not commonly used in Russian), the general use of metronymics in the Society in contexts where the mundane world might not use them would seem to justify the extreme nervousness this name induced in many of the members of the College of Arms. (LoAR 24 May 87, p. 11)

As [Name] is a family name derived from a place name, the patronymic particle [Mc] is inappropriate. (LoAR 26 Jul 87, p. 6)

[ferch Ollam] "Ollam" is a rank of bard and is not appropriate for a patronymic in the Society. The submittor's own documentation defines the word to mean "a learned man of the highest rank" so that the use of the patronymic may be interpreted as a claim to rank and therefore fall afoul of NR13. (LoAR Aug 87, p. 12)

Names - Placename

The form "feld" appears in the OED as a period variant for field so there is no linguistic miscegenation of the placename [Blackfeld]. (LoAR 27 Sep 86, p. 2)

The submittor's own documentation indicated that "min" in an "inseparable preposition" from Hebrew. By our rules this means that the place name would have either to be Hebraic or be from a language which demonstrably merged in this manner. (LoAR 28 Feb 87, p. 24)

Since no evidence for [Place] could be adduced other than its demonstrably out-of-period usage for the submittor's home town..., that portion of the name has been dropped in order to register the remainder of the name. (LoAR 14 Jun 87, p. 3)

By modifying the place name the claim to descent from the historical [Name] is diminished to the point of invisibility. (LoAR 26 Jul 87, p. 4)

While the rules clearly agree ... that documentation is required for period use when a name is demonstrably a place name in period (which Brandon is, as early as 975!), the consensus of opinion in the College was that it would be reasonable to add Brandon to the handfull of out-of-period names (Fiona, Corwin, etc.) that are accepted in Society use since only an "a" and "o" separate it from the acceptable "Brendan" and the pronunciation of the two names in the dialects that predominate in modern America are nearly identical. (LoAR 26 Jul 87, pp. 10-11)

Names - Polylingual

The patronymic on the original submission ... is compounded of the French patronymic "Fitz" and the Old German (not Anglo-Saxon, as stated in the letter of intent) given name "[Name]". It was the consensus of opinion in the College that the conjunction of the two languages here is unlikely and violates the rules on combination of languages in a single name. (LoAR 26 Oct 86, p. 3)

As [Name] is the Anglicised version of the name, used only as a last name so far as our sources show, the use of the Irish patronymic particle seem inappropriate and so has been dropped. (LoAR 28 Dec 86, p. 9)

The problem with the polylingual names so common in our Society is that their use is predicated on the assumption that the person in question moved in more than one nation in the course of their career. This requires that we check for conflict beyond the limits of a single language into translated forms that would not have been common in period. In fact, this personage with a Scots given name and the English family name [Surname] would have been called Ian [Surname] in Scotland (because there was no ready translation for [Surname]), but would have regularly been called John [Surname] in England. (LoAR 28 Dec 86, p. 16) [Name returned for conflict]

The form of the patronymic is not correct since the particle [ap] is Welsh and "[Name]" purely English. (LoAR 28 Feb 87, p. 22)

The submittor's own documentation indicated that "min" in an "inseparable preposition" from Hebrew. By our rules this means that the place name would have either to be Hebraic or be from a language which demonstrably merged in this manner. (LoAR 28 Feb 87, p. 24)

Both elements of a patronymic name must be derived from the same language or a language combination that would demonstrably have occurred (e.g., "mac" plus an English given name form in the Lowlands of Scotland). (LoAR 29 Mar 87, p. 19)

The use of the Norman French patronymic [fitz] with an English occupational name [Smith] finds no support. (LoAR 26 Apr 87, p. 2)

You cannot use a German article with an Old Norse noun. (LoAR 31 Oct 87, p. 11)

The use of the French adjective "argent" in this manner, prefixed to an English noun, does not seem to be period, although "Silver[noun]" would be fine. (LoAR 24 Jan 88, p. 9)

The use [of an Anglicised form of an Irish given name] with the Welsh patronymic particle "ap" is inappropriate. (LoAR 21 Feb 88, p. 12)

As the remainder of the name is Anglicized, the Gaelic preposition na seemed decidedly out of place so the lingua franca preposition [of] has been substituted. (LoAR of 23 Apr 88, p. 1)

[O’Drake] As the patronymic particle does not seem to have been used with English surnames in this manner, we have dropped it. (LoAR Aug 88, p. 12)

As the suffix is documented as a Latin form (and not as a Germanic one), it must normally be combined with Latin elements and not Frankish or Gothic prothemes. (LoAR Aug 88, p. 20)

As the given name was English, we felt that it was proper to use the Old English form of the patronymic [Beornsson] which is closer in sound to the form submitted [Bjornsson]. [The Norse form is Bjarnarson] (LoAR 30 Oct 88, p. 3)

A French given name cannot simply be merged with an Old English or Welsh suffix without further ado. Even the merging of Old Norse with Old English, which would be culturally, if not necessarily linguistically more persuasive, cannot be supported. (LoAR 30 Oct 88, p. 15)

The documentation indicated that the given name was compounded from a Hindu adjective ... and [a] Spanish noun.... Society usage does not permit such cross-linguistic amalgams (unless there is specific documentation to support the form) and in this case it is particularly unlikely given the naming practises of the two linguistic groups. (LoAR 30 Oct 88, p. 16)

The use of the French "de" with English place names has been well documented in the past. (LoAR 26 Mar 89, p. 12)

The epithet flatly contravenes the long-standing Laurel precedent that two languages may not be combined in the same word unless there is period evidence for this occurring for the particular languages and elements concerned.... For years the College has regularly modified or returned names which unite ore than one language in a single word or phrase ("Guillaumesdottir", "de Firenze", etc.), even where these are "linguistically compatible", i.e., all from Romance languages or Celtic languages, etc. Exceptions such as the use of the French "de" with English place names have only been allowed after significant evidence has bee produced for such usage in period. (LoAR 26 Mar 89, p. 18)

Names - Presumptuous

This was submitted as [Name] the [Occupation] of [Place], a formation which smacked too much of a title to the College. The simplest situation seemed to be to switch the epithets: this would be extremely common in medieval Latin where an occupational epithet frequently follows a personal name and epithet of origin and seems appropriate for a lingua franca translation of a scholar's name. (LoAR 25 Jan 87, p. 6) (See also: LoAR 29 Mar 87, p. 1; LoAR Jul 88, p. 10)

As Tir Connell was the seat of the chief sept of the O’Donnells, it may not be used with the name O’Donnell just as Argyll may not be used with Campbell. (LoAR 25 Jan 87, p. 10)

The translation for [the byname] Banu ("Lady") implies that it might be a title, which would not be permissible in a registered name; documentation must be provided that this is not the case. (LoAR 25 Jan 87, p. 26)

[Merlin Strongbow the Incomparable] We found we could accept Merlin Strongbow, but felt that Merlin the Incomparable, no matter how it was otherwise modified, was "too much". (LoAR 29 Mar 87, p. 5)

"Cwen" is the standard Anglo-Saxon title for Queen approved for use in the Society and was actually used in Old English in the specific sense of the ruler's wife (and in at least one case in the sense of a queen regnant). Therefore, I must reaffirm the ban on the use of "cwen" as an element in Society names. (LoAR 29 Mar 87, p. 13-14)

This is, unfortunately, a case where context makes this name unacceptable. Thora is a perfectly good Norse theophoric name and has been registered in the past. The submittor also provided maps showing that Asgardur is, on modern maps at least, a location in Iceland.... However, to almost everyone in the Society Asgard (Old Norse Asgardr) means but one thing: the home of the gods in the Scandinavian pantheon. This is just not an acceptable "home town" for someone in the Society. That this place name is combined with a name which differs by only one letter from that of one of the most prominent of the Aesir only makes the twitches produced by the name more pronounced. (LoAR 29 Mar 87, p. 22)

[Parish of Santz Martz] In such a situation, where a place name could only occur in a narrowly defined geographic area, although the location may not be in itself famous, there may exist a presupposition of infringement. (LoAR 26 Apr 87, p. 12) [Returned for conflict with Parish of Saint Martz, Lichtenstein]

By modifying the place name the claim to descent from the historical [Name] is diminished to the point of invisibility and removes the possibility of claim of membership in the already existing houshold of [Name]. (LoAR 26 Jul 87, p. 4)

The submittor stated that "Dryw" was a Welsh given name meaning "sight". Not only could this not be documented, but the word is the "Welsh" title for a druid as well as a Welsh term for wren (the two meanings are related). If the gentle wishes, he can use the documented period English form "Drew" from Old German "Drogo". (LoAR 26 Jul 87, p. 11)

The name was submitted as William [Surname] of Holland. Given William the Silent and William I, first King of the modern Netherlands the locative seemed unfortunate. (LoAR Aug 87, p. 5)

Caer Aranrhod ("Castle of Aranrhod", the Welsh moon goddess) is the usual name for the Corona Borealis. Neither the abode of a goddess nor a constellation are usual places for a human to come from and these are the interpretations which the average Society member would put on the place of origin, not the obscure reef whose name is derived from the older legendary locations. (LoAR Aug 87, p. 10)

[ferch Ollam] "Ollam" is a rank of bard and is not appropriate for a patronymic in the Society. The submittor's own documentation defines the word to mean "a learned man of the highest rank" so that the use of the patronymic may be interpreted as a claim to rank and therefore fall afoul of NR13. (LoAR Aug 87, p. 12)

O Corrain and Maguire (Gaelic Personal Names, p. 162) ... notes two usages of the given name, both apparently for non-humans.... Evidence for the name's use by humans is required. (LoAR Aug 87, p. 13)

Arianrhod was the Welsh moon goddess and, failing evidence for human use of the name in period, may not be used in the Society. (LoAR Aug 87, p. 13) (See also: LoAR 31 Mar 90, p. 6)

The use of the name Campbell of Argyll in modern mundane usage is tantamount to a claim of kinship with the chief and it will be so taken by the bulk of members of the Society, causing offense to some. (LoAR Aug 87, pp. 15-16)

The name Idunn may not be used with apples any more than Rhiannon may be used with horses. (LoAR 27 Sep 87, p. 11)

[Gwenhyfar le Wita] The most serious problem with the name, however, is the implications which come from linking the name Gwenevere with a term like "wita" which could so easily be associated with Arthur's queen. Although the name [Gwenevere] was used by other ladies in period and is licit for Society use, the contexts in which it is used must be carefully examined in order to avoid offense. [Guinevere the White is presumptuous] (LoAR 28 Nov 87, p. 11)

The byname "Tsepesh", which means "Impaler" and is associated with Vlad the Impaler, prototype for the Dracula legend, is offensive in itself, offensive in its association with Vlad/Dracula and should not be registered. (LoAR 19 Dec 87, p. 14)

[(Name) la Libra] You cannot claim to be an astrological sign, which is what this name does. (LoAR 19 Dec 87, p. 18)

[Llew ap Nuada] The given name Llew has previously been ruled to be ineligible for use in the Society since it is the name of a Welsh demi-god. Although Nuadha has been used as the name of several ecclesiastics in period, it is best known as the name of the ancient Irish lord of the Otherworld, who appears in the early genealogies of many Irish noble families (much as Mars appeared in the genealogies of the Romans). Used in conjunction with the name of a Welsh demi-god with stars and a silver sword in the device, this is clearly not acceptable (one of the primary attributes of Nuadha Silverhand was a magical sword of great power). (LoAR 21 Feb 88, p. 12)

[Rioghbhardan (a documented given which means "royal bard"), and on the device a rainbow and a harp] The harp is problematic when taken with the given name. At least one herald also found the rainbow to contain an allusion to senior bardic circles, since only the most senior bards were allowed to wear seven colours (such as are contained in the natural rainbow). [Name registered, device returned] (LoAR 19 Mar 88, p. 15)

[von Nordlichten] You cannot be "from the Northern Lights", as this would imply more than human status. (LoAR 23 Apr 88, p. 20)

The addition of the geographical modifier [of (placename)] which is not at all associated with [Surname] territory in addition to the use of the given name which does not appear in any [Surname] genealogy which we could find would seem to carry the name clear. [Name registered] (LoAR Jul 88, p. 10)

[(Given) Grailseeker] The name cause significant twitches, but seem permissible in light of the absence of any (Given) in the context of the Arthurian Grail quest. (LoAR Aug 88, p. 9)

[de Borgia] The use of the surname Borgia [is] "presumptuous". (LoAR Aug 88, p. 16)

[Malcolm the Scot] This name [does] in fact conflict with several kings of Scotland, most notably with the son of King Duncan mentioned on the letter of intent: it is this Malcolm who was proclaimed king after the death of MacBeth. (LoAR Aug 88, p. 17)

When dealing with patron saints as famous as Patrick, some care must be used to avoid locations which are associated with their careers [as a geographic byname]. (LoAR Aug 88, p. 17)

It is important to consider why we protect the names of famous personages and historical figures in the Society. It is certainly not because they are likely to complain about the infringement, since many are long centuries dead. Rather it is to protect our membership against offense or disturbance which might be caused by someone assuming the persona of an actual historical figure. (LoAR Aug 88, p. 18.)

The traditional position of the College [may be summarized as] "There is a long set of Precedents that say (monarch's name) of (monarch's place) or (monarch's name) the (monarch's nationality) are too evocative of that monarch." (LoAR Aug 88, p. 19

[De (Place) y Aragon] The use of the place name of Aragon in this formation is essentially tantamount to a claim of descent from the Aragonese royal family and, as such, parallel usages have been returned for presumption before. (LoAR 21 May 89, p. 22)

[Hohenstaufen] The analogy [with Stuart and d’Este] is not close" both of the cited names which have been permitted have been documented in clearly non-dynastic contexts. This cannot be said of the Hohenstaufen name which is closely associated with the German kingship and Holy Roman Empire. To register the [submitted] name we have dropped this dynastic surname. (LoAR 18 Jun 89, p. 5)

[One commenter] refers to a "long-standing ban on names of the form (ruler's name) of (place ruled). It is our understanding, however, that this ban is effective only down to the level of territorial duchies..." As far as we can determine, no such ban exists. While names implying rule over a sovereign entity are not permitted, importance is not determined sheerly by the rank of the individual in question. (LoAR 26 Nov 89, p. 30)

The standing precedent in the College (stated by Baldwin of Erebor, February, 1985) dictates that the name Corwin may not be used in conjunction with roses of any tincture. (LoAR 26 Nov 89, p. 35)

[Talena of Evenstar] The use of the given name with this particular byname also created severe twitches amongst the Dragonflight devotees in view of the association of the star with the Threads. (LoAR 31 Dec 89, p. 21)

By the submittors' own documentation, Branstock is the name of a specific mythological item ... being a distinctive feature of [a] distinctive building. The derivation of the name is closely associated with this legend. Clearly, this is a variant of the same northern folk myth which gave rise to the sword in the stone of Arthurian legend. If we would not be willing to register the Shire of Excalibur or the Shire of Valhalla, we cannot register this name. (LoAR 29 Apr 90, p. 17)

[(Name) Baird of Gwynedd] [This] is precisely analogous to one of the examples used for presumption in the rules: "John the Bard of Armagh". This being the case, we have dropped the locative to register the name. (LoAR 17 Jun 90, p. 1)

[MacLear] The symbolism of the seahorse and trident are excessive taken in context with the patronymic since they suggest a claim that the submittor is the son of the Irish god of the sea ("Lir" or "Lear"). (LoAR 17 Jun 90, p. 13)

Names - Russian

While there is evidence that the "-ovna" ending is only used with the father's name (i.e., metronymics of general ancestral names are not commonly used in Russian), the general use of metronymics in the Society in contexts where the mundane world might not use them would seem to justify the extreme nervousness this name induced in many of the members of the College of Arms. (LoAR 24 May 87, p. 11)

Russian names must agree in gender. The feminine first name must have a feminine form of the surname or patronymic to go with it. (LoAR 29 Apr 90, p. 14)

Names - Spanish

The alternation of "y" and "i" is not random in Spanish and occurs in very rigid circumstances (usually in proper nouns derived from other languages and/or loan words such as "Ysabeau"). (LoAR 24 Jan 88, p. 5) (See also: LoAR 27 Sep 86, p. 8)

It should be noted that the submittor's evidence does provide some evidence for the occasional use of the locative [Aragon] in simple names (i.e., names not manifesting the paternal/maternal double name), although a majority of these include obviously royal personages.... On the other hand, while the submittor indicates that the single use of the name is clearly associated with royalty (which is not obviously clear) and the double usage [de (placename) y Aragon] she wishes to use is not, the period examples given do not support this distinction.... Of all the "double-barreled" names clearly shown to be in period from the submittor's sample, all had demonstrable links to the Aragonese royal family. (LoAR 26 Nov 89, pp. 20-21) (See also: LoAR 28 May 90, p. 5)

Names - Spelling Variants

Neither a "y" for an "i" nor a "k" for a "c" substitution occurs in French. (LoAR 27 Sep 87, p. 12)

The alternation of "y" and "i" is not random in Spanish and occurs in very rigid circumstances (usually in proper nouns derived from other languages and/or loan words such as "Ysabeau"). (LoAR 24 Jan 88, p. 5)

Names - Surnames

Since the submittor indicated that the name should be Old Norse, I have modified the patronymic [(Name)datter] to the proper Old Norse form [(Name)dottir]. (LoAR 27 Sep 86, p. 2)

The name was submitted as Draco of Nolava. [It was] acutely pointed out that this "made-up" place name is merely Avalon spelled backwards. By itself this would be dicey since Avalon has been held before to be out of the human bourne, but in conjunction with the name Draco it is "right out". (LoAR 27 Sep 86, p. 7)

[(Name) of Gilnockie] Gilnockie is one of the strongholds of the Armstrongs. This is the sort of allusion to one's mundane heritage that is perfectly licit and should be encouraged (the gentle's mundane family name is Armstrong). (LoAR 28 Dec 86, p. 5)

By the documentation provided in the letter of intent "[Name]" is itself a patronymic derived family name and so it is inappropriate to precede it by the patronymic particle. (LoAR 28 Dec 86, p. 10)

The family name was submitted as [Name]sson. However, [Name] is an English mispronunciation of the Welsh family name [Name] and thus is inappropriate for use in such a patronymic. (LoAR 28 Dec 86, p. 10)

Family names derived from animals were extremely common in period Germany. (LoAR 28 Dec 86, p. 11)

The use of the name Campbell of Argyll in modern mundane usage is tantamount to a claim of kinship with the chief and it will be so taken by the bulk of members of the Society, causing offense to some. (LoAR Aug 87, pp. 15-16)

By the submittor's own documentation, [Name] is a family name derived from a place name and therefore is not eligible for use as a given name in the Society without evidence that it was so used in period. (LoAR 21 Feb 88, p. 11)

The documentation is unclear as to the period in which the family name of origin ... came into use as a given name.... We would like to give the submittor the "benefit of the doubt"..., but this is difficult when there is solid evidence for its use as a surname and none for its use as a given name in period (cf. NR10). (LoAR 19 Mar 88, p. 18)

Names - Unique

One touchstone for the uniqueness of a byname is whether it is used by itself, in period or in modern histories, to refer to the individual it describes (e.g., in medieval and modern literature Richard I of England is sometimes called simply "the Lionheart"). (LoAR 28 Dec 86, p. 10)

By the submittor's own documentation the given name was that of one of the sons of Genghis Khan. Such names, e.g. Genghis, Temujin, etc., have in the past been returned as unique names failing documentation to demonstrate their more general use in Mongolian society. No such documentation has been provided. (LoAR 24 May 87, p. 12)

"Kveld-Ulfr" may well be a unique name like "Skalla-Grimr": the adjective "kveld" was added to the given name "Ulfr" for the grandfather of Egil Skallagrimsson, a famous berserker. He was apparently given the name because he only came alive in the evenings and possibly because he was considered by some to be a werewolf in actuality. (LoAR 30 Oct 88, p. 13)

[Grimsson] The name was submitted as [Name] Skallagrimsson. As Skallagrim has previously been ruled to be a unique designation for Grimr Kveldulfsson, we have dropped the adjective epithet to make the patronymic more generic in order to register [it]. (LoAR 15 Jan 89, p. 7)

The name "Prydwen" is only documented in period as the name of Arthur's boat. While the analysis of name elements provided ... opens several possibilities for similar names, it was our feeling that the name is so closely associated with this special vessel that it is inappropriate for use in the Society, failing some solid documentation for period use as a given name. (LoAR 27 Aug 89, p. 13)

While there can be (and has been) some debate as to whether the name "Olwen" is the unique perquisite of the lady with the unusual powers in Welsh myth, certainly the conjunction of the trefoils with the name is excessive, given the origin of the name itself in her stated power of "perfloration". (The Laurel staff really liked that terminology for the ability to have clovers spring from your footprints!) (LoAR 27 Aug 89, p. 26)

The name "Uthyr" or "Uther" appears to be unique to the Pendragon. (LoAR 21 Jan 90, p. 18)

As noted previously, the name "Arianrhod" appears to have been uniquely used in period for the Welsh moon goddess.

By the submittor's own documentation, Branstock is the name of a specific mythological item ... being a distinctive feature of [a] distinctive building. The derivation of the name is closely associated with this legend. Clearly, this is a variant of the same northern folk myth which gave rise to the sword in the stone of Arthurian legend. If we would not be willing to register the Shire of Excalibur or the Shire of Valhalla, we cannot register this name. (LoAR 29 Apr 90, p. 17)

Names - Use

The concept of the use name is a valuable one, but one which it is sometimes difficult to apply. Many who would like to discard the idea of use names would be horrified if we registered Richard Jones Plantagenet or Finn Peterson MacCool. (LoAR 27 Nov 88, p. 2)

Names - Welsh

As it is usual practice in period (and modern) Welsh to omit the article used in English before a modifying adjective, we have dropped the article. After some research we came to the conclusion that, although it is rather more common for adjectives after a masculine personal name to mutate, it is possible for the name to retain the "radical" form. The primary criteria for this decision seem to be euphony and clarity of the identity of the original adjective. In this case, both would seem to dictate that the original "[adjective]" be retained. (LoAR 28 Feb 87, p. 1)

The name Gwyneth was almost certainly a late derivation from the geographic name Gwynedd and was not a given name in period. I have to agree that Gwynedd, which is the usual spelling for the place, should not be allowed in the Society as a given name. However, the name Gwyneth seems to have acquired a separate existence in the Society and has been registered at least twenty times (as Gwyneth or Gwynaeth) including more than one occurrence within the last year. I have to conclude that Gwyneth should belong to that select group of non-period names like Corwin or Fiona that the Society at large has elected as being "compatible". (LoAR 28 Feb 87, p. 2)

"Merch" regularly mutates [to "ferch"] when used as a feminine patronymic particle. (LoAR 29 Mar 87, p. 2)

The evidence indicates that the usage "given name + kingdom name" is regularly used in Welsh to indicate a member of the ruling family of that kingdom (e.g., Owain Gwynedd). (LoAR 14 Jun 87, p. 6)

The submittor stated that "Dryw" was a Welsh given name meaning "sight". Not only could this not be documented, but the word is the "Welsh" title for a druid as well as a Welsh term for wren (the two meanings are related). If the gentle wishes, he can use the documented period English form "Drew" from Old German "Drogo". (LoAR 26 Jul 87, p. 11)

[ferch Ollam] "Ollam" is a rank of bard and is not appropriate for a patronymic in the Society. The submittor's own documentation defines the word to mean "a learned man of the highest rank" so that the use of the patronymic may be interpreted as a claim to rank and therefore fall afoul of NR13. (LoAR Aug 87, p. 12)

Arianrhod was the Welsh moon goddess and, failing evidence for human use of the name in period, may not be used in the Society. (LoAR Aug 87, p. 13) (See also: LoAR 31 Mar 90, p. 6)

The name Trevor is a Welsh place name (generally spelled "Trefor" in Welsh) which does not seem to have been used as a given name until the middle of the nineteenth century. (LoAR Aug 87, p. 15)

While NR10a is somewhat ambiguous, the more general requirement of a primary language in NR3 also applies and there was prior precedent for applying the naming practises of the primary language to a made-up name. As the name was stated to be constructed according to Welsh practise, it had to be judged in those terms. [The principal herald] noted in the submission that medieval Welsh did not form dithematic names. If this is interpreted ... to mean that it does not form "mix and match" names as did Old English, for instance, this is correct.... We do feel that constructs in Welsh must be approached with a greater degree of care, not merely because of the requirements of mutation, but also because the dithematic constructs which are documented in period appear to have recoverable meaning: a name like "war peace", which is perfectly acceptable in the Germanic tradition, would apparently not have occurred.... We have been persuaded by additional evidence that the summarized evidence originally presented led us to conclude erroneously that the component portions of the names were not separable name elements in period Welsh. If the components appear in multiple Welsh names, then the name becomes considerably more plausible. We ... conclude that the new evidence has nudged it this side of "compatibility". (LoAR Jun 88, p. 13)

[Lloyd] The given name has now been documented as a given name in period from Morgan and Morgan (pp. 151-154). (LoAR Jul 88, p. 12)

The name Gwydion may be used in the Society so long as there is no other reference to the Gwydion of Welsh legend. (LoAR 26 Feb 89, p. 8)

While there can be (and has been) some debate as to whether the name "Olwen" is the unique perquisite of the lady with the unusual powers in Welsh myth, certainly the conjunction of the trefoils with the name is excessive, given the origin of the name itself in her stated power of "perfloration". (The Laurel staff really liked that terminology for the ability to have clovers spring from your footprints!) (LoAR 27 Aug 89, p. 26)

[A commenter] has documented ... the less usual but permissible usage of unmutated "merch" in a name. (LoAR 31 Dec 89, p. 12)

New Charge

The "bordure thistly" (on the analogy of the bordure flory) would seem to be an introduction that we are not quite ready to make and certainly not on a badge. (LoAR 26 Oct 86, pp. 11-12)

We have been unable to find any period precedent for such a multiply tinctured chequy [of three tinctures]. If such could be found, we would entertain an appeal; otherwise, we feel that this is an innovation that we would rather not make in Society heraldry. (LoAR 28 Feb 87, p. 17)

 


O

Occult

See also, Magic

There was considerable feeling in the College that the combination of the eye and sickle-shaped blade was excessively redolent of the occult. The Laurel staff also found the allusion (possibly unintentional) to ritual blinding to be potentially offensive. (LoAR Aug 87, p. 12)

Offensiveness

[A fox maintaining in its mouth a squirrel] The addition of the minor charge in purpure, which has a low contrast with the sable fox, is [an] anomaly, while others felt that the dead squirrel bordered on the morbid. (LoAR 26 Oct 86, p. 11)

It was the consensus of the commenting heralds that the bat with the drops of blood was too suggestive of a vampiric persona which might be offensive to a substantial portion of the populace (and would be demonstrably a claim to powers beyond the normal sphere), even without the allusion to Dracula involved in the byname Draco. (LoAR 26 Oct 86, p. 12)

Reluctant as we are to call offensiveness, given the sexual and occult symbolisms of the cup and the spear or sword in this arrangement [palewise], we must reluctantly agree that a significant segment of the populace would feel this was inappropriate for use in the Society. (LoAR 25 Jan 87, p. 26)

In and of itself, [a skold] is no more offensive than the scourge ... or fetterlocks, both of which suggested "leather and bondage" to more than one member of the Laurel staff. (LoAR 28 Feb 87, p. 18)

There was considerable feeling in the College that the combination of the eye and sickle-shaped blade was excessively redolent of the occult. The Laurel staff also found the allusion (possibly unintentional) to ritual blinding to be potentially offensive. (LoAR Aug 87, p. 12)

This is an abstraction of the "sign of Tanit", one which actually appears to have been made in ancient formal and informal graffiti. The overwhelming association of Tanit (or Tanith) both in Greek and Roman sources is with the sacrifice of children. This association is frequently the one single thing that the layman knows about Carthaginian religion.... This is, moreover, not merely malicious propaganda on the part of the Romans: it is supported by the archaeological evidence. (LoAR Aug 87, pp. 12-13)

[Gwenhyfar le Wita] Although the name [Gwenevere] was used by other ladies in period and is licit for Society use, the contexts in which it is used must be carefully examined in order to avoid offense. [Guinevere the White is presumptuous] (LoAR 28 Nov 87, p. 11)

The byname "Tsepesh", which means "Impaler" and is associated with Vlad the Impaler, prototype for the Dracula legend, is offensive in itself, offensive in its association with Vlad/Dracula and should not be registered. (LoAR 19 Dec 87, p. 14)

[Jean d’Eaux] This will be considered by far too many as a bad example of offensive "toilet humour" ..., given the general Society euphemism of "Shrines of Saint John of the Waters". (LoAR 19 Mar 88, p. 18)

[Jean d’Eaux] Although the submittor may not really have intended the effect of a drawing of a modern (very Art Deco modern in black!) toilet seen from above, this is the picture that a majority of the populace will see, particularly when placed in context with the name. Leaving aside the issue of whether [this submission] is offensive, it is disruptive to the medieval atmosphere by its very modernity. (LoAR 19 Mar 88, p. 18)

While many of the members of the College had a major twitch at the use of the burning cross, this form does not resemble any of the forms nor use of any of the colour combinations that we could find used by the KKK or other white supremacist groups and the cross enflamed is a symbol used in religious iconography with some frequency in a positive manner. As many have commented over the years, offensiveness should only be called when the name or armoury will cause a clear problem, which does not seem to be the case here. (LoAR 31 Dec 89, p. 3)

We have to be very careful not to go overboard in calling offense with regard to religion lest we ban religion altogether and cause offense by that ban itself. (LoAR 25 Feb 90, p. 12)

We have been forced to the conclusion that the name ... has become so notorious and controversial that it cannot be registered to anyone at this time.... There is ample precedent for finding against a submission because of its historical associations in the mundane sphere. It seems unreasonable and unwise to dismiss our own history as being of lesser value and less likely to carry the seeds of offense.... No compromise appears possible between the parties and it is clear that the use of [Name] is causing the same sort of disruption/offense usually associated with the sort of mundane items which have been refused registration because of their mundane historical associations. (LoAR 25 Feb 90, pp. 17-18)

Ordinary

See also, Bordure, Chevron, Fess, etc.

There is no difference between an ordinary and its diminutive. (LoAR 25 Jan 87, p. 28)

A major point of difference can be derived from the addition of the tertiary on a single ordinary. (LoAR 26 Mar 89, p. 2)

We would be inclined to grant difference between an ordinary invected and an ordinary engrailed on the grounds that the two were distinguished in period armoury and have traditionally been distinguished quite well in Society armoury. However, we cannot in conscience grant difference where the ordinary involves both lines of division. (LoAR 25 Feb 90, p. 19)

Origami

The origami crane is in trian aspect and, if it were placed in profile, there is a serious question whether it would be at all identifiable (it is marginal now). [Returned for conflict] (LoAR 31 Oct 87, p. 12)

The origami dragon [is] not an identifiable charge. (LoAR 23 Apr 88, p. 15)

Orle

The use of the nested orles in different tinctures is an anomaly for period heraldic style. (LoAR 28 Feb 87, p. 19)

As an ordinary wreathed of one colour (or "cabled", as the original blazon had it) has previously been disallowed (February, 1985), we have substituted an orle invected: any interior diapering would not contribute difference in any case. (LoAR Aug 87, p. 6)

We do not use single diminutives and so this [single tressure] has to be an orle. (LoAR Jun 88, p. 20)

[A pale, overall an orle of leaves counterchanged] The placement of the orle of leaves [is] visually confusing and poor style. (LoAR 26 Feb 89, p. 19)

Orles do not overlie a chief. (LoAR 30 Jul 89, p. 2)

The use of the orle fleury here, particularly given the Or and gules tinctures used, is far too close to the reserved tressure of Scotland. (LoAR 30 Sep 89, p. 13)

While the letter blazoned the [charges] as "in orle", their position was not actually "orlish", but more of a very regular semy. (LoAR 22 Oct 89, p. 1)

After much discussion we decided that the orle of rosemary was visually too close to one of the standard depictions of the required Society laurel wreath. (LoAR 26 Nov 89, p. 27)

[An orle surmounted at its corners by three fleurs-de-lys in pall] The orle is suggestive of the royal tressure of Scotland. [Returned for other conflict] (LoAR 29 Apr 90, p. 17)

The only charge which appears to have been regularly surmounted by a chief was the bordure (and even then the practice was decidedly variable). Such period examples of orles or tressures in conjunction with a chief that we have been able to locate have the full orle placed below the chief, as in the arms of the Worshipful Company of Musicians. (LoAR 17 Jun 90, p. 13)

Outline Conflict

This submission does not conflict by exact outline ... as suggested by one commentor, because of the paning of the lozengy field. (LoAR 30 Jul 89, p. 8)

Overall Charge

[A rose overall Or, slipped and leaved vert] It might be argued that in this case the slipping and leaving are non-trivial and should be required to obey AR4 which dictates that charges overall should be required to have adequate contrast with the field.... However, in this case, ... we elect to allow an exception as specifically provided for in AR4. This exception is peculiar to this submission and should not be taken as setting any general precedents. (LoAR 28 Feb 87, p. 7)

The [charge] overlies the visually complex underlying charge to such an extent that it is unidentifiable without the aid of the blazon. (LoAR 28 Feb 87, p. 23) (See also: LoAR 29 Mar 87, p. 20)

There was almost unanimous agreement amongst the commenters that so much of the argent [overall charge] lay on the argent [ordinary] that it would be unidentifiable. (LoAR 29 Mar 87, p. 15)

In period, it would have been a definite anomaly for a charge overall to share the charges of the field and the primary charge in a counterchange relationship, but counterchange of overall charges, when used in moderation, has become relatively accepted in the Society. (LoAR 26 Apr 87, pp. 7-8)

Primary charges should not be demoted when a charge is placed overall.... Under certain circumstances, charges overall can be held to have equal weight, but this will not "demote" the original primary charge, if the two are drawn in proper proportion. (LoAR 26 Apr 87, p. 10)

The use of the charge overall here, overlying a base does appear to be non-period style, the more so since the ford is not drawn properly but rather as a "base wavy azure charged with four barrulets wavy argent." (LoAR 28 Nov 87, p. 10)

The intention [of Rule AR18a] was to allow automatic difference [between Society and mundane or fictional arms] in cases where period (and modern) heraldic practice would not perceive cadency. Thus a Society device which bore "Azure, a unicorn's head Or, between three swords proper" would not conflict with "Azure, three swords palewise proper" because period heralds would perceive a potential cadet relationship not with the mundane coat cited, but with "Azure, a unicorn's head Or". In the case of a charge added overall, the same situation does not exist, mundane heraldry does in fact indicate cadency by adding a charge overall. (LoAR 19 Mar 88, p. 4) (See also: the examples in Heraldic Cadency, Gayre, chapters XIV and XV; LoAR 23 Apr 88, p. 17; LoAR 26 Mar 89, p. 6)

[Or, four pallets gules, overall a saltire counterchanged] This is in conflict with the arms of Aragon cited on the letter of intent ("Or, four pallets gules").... AR 18b, which grants automatic sufficient difference from mundane arms for the addition of the primary charge, does not apply here, since the saltire is added over an already charged field. (LoAR 23 Apr 88, p. 19)

The question of whether charges overall should be considered primary or secondary (and thus granted the full weight of any changes made to them given the current limitation on difference derivable solely from secondary charges is thornier....

In this case, the criterion we have had to use is the way that the two devices will be perceived by the observer. Both devices are identical save for the type and tincture of the charge set overall. All the difference is derived ... from a single design element. In a similar situation (modifications to secondaries set around the central design element), it has been held that adequate difference between Society devices cannot be derived from cumulative changes to the same charge or set of charges. We feel the same situation applies here. (LoAR 18 Sep 88, p. 17)

[The overall charge] is not truly "overall" since it does not evenly overlie the charges on the field. (LoAR 26 Feb 89, p. 16)

The charge overall must be judged for contrast against the field and Or does not have adequate contrast with ermine in our system. Note that the exception allowance in AR4 only applies "where the underlying charge(s) are inherently large, taking up most of the shield in any reasonable emblazon".... The size and width of a saltire has a wide number of variants in period and an even wider variance in the Society so the saltire cannot be considered to be so inherently large that no significant part of the [overall charge] would be placed on the field in any reasonable emblazon. (LoAR 21 May 89, p. 24)

Charges overall are considered to lie directly on the field although not entirely on the field for purposes of style and conflict. The wording of the section on layering was specifically worded to allow charging of charges overall. (LoAR 21 Jan 90, p. 12)

 


P

Pall

[A pall hummetty, each arm terminating in a unicorn's head and the upper arms elongated and fretted] The pall not only violated the ancient ban on knotwork, but could not be reconstructed from the blazon, ingenious as it was. (LoAR 23 Apr 88, p. 21)

[Argent, two gussets gules vs. Gules, a pall argent] Regrettably, this is in conflict.... The removal of the inverted triangular portion of the field from the top of the device does not create enough visual difference to carry the two devices truly clear. (LoAR 17 Jun 90, p. 17)

Paly

NOTE: We considered at some length whether it would be proper to issue a general ruling rescinding the current ruling which makes fields divided of [an] even number of pallets or bars "neutral" where an odd number is not. After drawing up several examples of fields divided evenly and unevenly, it became clear that contrast of overlying ordinaries such as chiefs and bordures of the same class as the dominant tincture (i.e., the one with an even number of ordinaries on an uneven field) is considerably poorer when the field is unevenly divided. (LoAR 25 Jan 87, p. 9)

Pawprints/Footprints

While footprints have been registered in the past, all have been more or less identifiable as such. There was a general feeling that buffalo hoofprints were not identifiable enough (even as being hoofprints) to be used as a charge in the Society. (LoAR Aug 87, p. 10)

[The secondary charges] are not identifiable as bird's footprints (we are dubious whether anything could be): a significant proportion of the commentors and Laurel staff thought they were caltraps before the blazon was read. (LoAR 28 Nov 87, p. 10) (See also: LoAR 24 May 87, p. 12)

[Wolf's pawprint v. bear's pawprint] No difference can be derived from the change in kind of pawprint. (LoAR 21 Feb 88, p. 11)

We shall continue to register submissions containing pawprints for Society use. (CL 13 May 90, p. 2) (See also: LoAR 25 Jan 87, p. 13; LoAR 21 Feb 88, p. 7)

Permission

The stated verbal permission [to conflict] means nothing: the motto of the College of Arms is "Non scripta, non est". (LoAR 29 Mar 87, p. 19)

The addition of the bordure, which is a standard cadency mark, to a badge which was substantially the same seemed to demand a letter of permission. (LoAR Aug 87, p. 11)

Permission to conflict was granted by [Name].... Technically there is enough difference between the two devices ... but there is no arguing that the two devices are close enough visually that the permission to conflict made everyone a little more comfortable. (LoAR 15 Jan 89, p. 9)

Pheon

The primary charge ... was not a pheon: a properly drawn pheon would not allow space for any rounded [tertiary] charge such as the blasted tree. (LoAR 21 Feb 88, p. 12)

Piercing

See also, Voiding

The interlacing of the flaunches by the [charge] is not period style and is, in and of itself, too great an anomaly to allow. (LoAR 28 Dec 86, p. 14)

Pile

What is drawn ... is neither a proper pile inverted nor a field per chevron nor a true point pointed. If it were drawn properly as a pile inverted, there would not be space for the [charge] in chief. (LoAR 28 Feb 87, p. 20) (See also: LoAR 24 Dec 88, p. 16; LoAR 26 Feb 89 p. 19; LoAR 26 Nov 89, p. 40)

[Two piles issuant from base, fimbriated] Blazoned with two piles, they [are] neither truly voided nor truly fimbriated and, in either case, constituted "thin line heraldry". (LoAR 23 Apr 88, p. 21)

Note that, when piles meet in point, they tend to be diminished in length, even in period heraldry. (LoAR 30 Sep 89, p. 7)

It would be better style by far if there were not two different types of charge in two different tinctures on the pile. (LoAR 31 Dec 89, p. 15)

[Three piles issuant from sinister] This is also a direct visual conflict with [Name]...: the period depiction of the per pale indented field showed large indentations reaching nearly to the edges of the shield such as appear here. (LoAR 21 Jan 90, p. 17)

There is a long-standing precedent in the College for banning charges, including laurel wreaths, below piles on the grounds that a properly drawn period pile would not allow space for another charge to rest, in whole or in part, below the pile. (LoAR 25 Feb 90, p. 19)

Point

What is drawn ... is neither a proper pile inverted nor a field per chevron nor a true point pointed.... If properly drawn as a point pointed, there would be inadequate space for the three [tertiary charges] in pale. (LoAR 28 Feb 87, p. 20)

[Argent, a point pointed sable] In appearance this is a variant of a field "per chevron argent and sable". (LoAR 19 Dec 87, p. 19)

Visually the sable point on the field is identical to a field "per chevron abased" and thus no more than a minor point can be derived from this. (LoAR 23 Apr 88, p. 8)

The default point in base is centered and contributes to the balance of the design rather than unbalancing it, as does this [dexter] point.... Granted that certain other unbalancing charges (most notably the charged gore) crept into Society heraldry in the past, we see no reason to allow the inherently unbalanced charged dexter (or sinister) point. (LoAR 26 Feb 89, p. 20)

Point-and-a-Half Rule

Flaunches are by definition visually more complex than a bordure or chief so that the fact that one set of flaunches is charged detracts from the simplicity enough that the "Point and a Half Rule" cannot apply. (LoAR 26 Mar 89, p. 17)

Policy

General Statement: The Laurel Office cannot be a judge of political correctness. (LoAR 27 Sep 86, p. 2)

In the Society badges are - or should be - used to identify the individual, not the other way around. (LoAR 25 Jan 87, p. 27)

We do not legislate persona. (LoAR 28 Feb 87, p. 6)

The stated verbal permission [to conflict] means nothing: the motto of the College of Arms is "Non scripta, non est". (LoAR 29 Mar 87, p. 19)

Whenever clarity and elegance conflict, elegance and/or brevity must be sacrificed. Note that elegance includes brevity, lack of reduplication, inclusion of allusions and cants, all those elements that make for "style" in blazon. We should value them highly, but in our search for the most elegant turn of phrase we cannot lose sight of the fact that elegance is secondary [to the] primary goal of blazon: to describe the emblazon correctly. (CL 18 May 87, pp. 2-3)

It is not only the right but the duty of Laurel to use the best information available. If that information has not been made available for one reason or another through commentary in the College, then it should be my right to go further afield, for example, to use my knowledge of languages or my library to support a name (or refute it). If the right to use expertise from whatever source, whether it has appeared in a letter of commentary or not, is denied, then the position of Laurel becomes merely that of a collator of letters requiring no expertise (and indeed expertise then becomes a handicap!).... I feel that I am robbing the College and the Society if I do not put the same expertise at their disposal as Laurel as I did as a commenting herald. (CL 18 May 87, pp. 3-4)

It was specifically asked "whether this is a valid application of the principle that occasionally two large minors may be sufficient to clear a conflict with mundane arms." The phrasing here implies that such a principle has and should be accepted by the Laurel Office and the College of Arms. It has not been and should not be. If the principle is not valid then the question of an application of the principle is moot. (LoAR 14 Jun 87, p. 6)

We register the emblazon, not the blazon. The only conclusion to be drawn from the carefully drawn emblazon provided by the submittors was that they desired, not [charge] proper, but [charge] Or. This was not a situation where confusion might be attributed to incompetence on the part of the artist or confusion on the part of the submittor. (LoAR 14 Jun 87, p. 7) (See also: LoAR 29 Mar 87, p. 18; LoAR 24 Jan 88, p. 6)

We must draw our general rules from the common usage, not the anomaly. (LoAR Aug 87, pp. 15-16)

No Principal Herald or subordinate shall require a self-addressed stamped envelope as a requirement for making a valid submission. Submittors may be requested or required to notify the appropriate heraldic officer at the Kingdom level of any address change after the original submission is made, but further processing of a submission shall not be made conditional upon the fulfillment of such a requirement. (CL 30 Nov 87, p. 2)

It shall be the responsibility of the Principal Herald of each Kingdom, either directly or through a designated deputy, to send out a properly researched letter of intent to the College of Arms at least every other month. This requirement of one letter in each sixty day period is a minimum; issuance of letters on a monthly basis is strongly encouraged to ensure the timely consideration of all submissions by the College of Arms. (CL 31 Jan 88, p. 2)

In some cases, pointing out the duty of the peerage in general and the Crown in particular to set a good example for the populace may have some effect: try and get the Crown to see that their actions foster a general disregard for the rules of heraldry as much as it would foster a disregard for the Rules of the List, if they fought at a War with patently illegal armour or persistently "rhinohided" (note: only use this approach if the Crown does not use illegal armour or fail to take blows!).

It is [the heralds'] responsibility to persuade all concerned that "official" entities should be official, i.e., registered. Point out that nothing is protected from use elsewhere, if it is not registered. If this does not work, [point out] that unregistered (and unregisterable) names or badges may cause problems for those who receive the awards if they go to another kingdom.

We do not expect that persuasions by heralds (or anyone else) will resolve all cases where the Crown acts in contravention of our heraldic rules. However, with adequate explanation to the Crown and populace of the rationale behind those rules and the decisions made based on them, the number of "flagrant examples" can be reduced to a minimum and, hopefully, the general damage done to the period ambience of the Society by those examples can be mitigated. (CL 17 Mar 88, p. 4)

The Board of Directors at its January meeting has ... decided that the College may not be compelled to register that which is in violation of its existing rules. (LoAR 21 Feb 88, p. 11)

We foster period heraldry which demands identifiability at a distance, not the "bookplate heraldry" of the Tudor period and later. (LoAR 21 Feb 88, p. 13) (See also: LoAR 25 Jan 87, p. 27; LoAR 26 Feb 89, p. 20)

On a case by case basis objects and/or usages which are first documented after 1600, but may be legitimately supposed to have existed before that date may be granted some "extra slack". A classical case of this would be a name for which the earliest documentation is a marriage record of 1608: it may be supposed that the person who bore that name was born before the turn of the century! (LoAR 19 Mar 88, p. 14)

Charges maintained by a beast are normally tertiary charges at best (some must be considered negligible in counting conflict) and thus worth at most a minor point of difference. (LoAR Jul 88, p. 8)

[Submission for registration of a badge for an office for which there is a badge for the office at a Society-wide level] The restriction on the use of subsidiary insignia is a very old one. It is mentioned in correspondence by Ioseph of Locksley at the very beginning of his tenure as Laurel as a given so we must assume it to have been traditional prior to 1973.... [This restriction] is clearly based on logic and common sense: the need for insignia which would be readily identifiable on an interkingdom level must have been obvious as soon as there was more than one kingdom in the Society. The common sense of this restriction holds true even more today, when there are twelve kingdoms. (LoAR Jul 88, p. 8)

Laurel tries very hard not to play favourites.... It has been a central tenet of this "administration" that who a person is is immaterial: it is the submission's content and documentation that is considered.... We have tried to maintain consistency and equity, even when the clamour on both sides has been the greatest.

What we have not been able to do, however, is block out human error. Even were the Laurel Office of the Papacy of the Society as it is sometimes termed, we would have doubts concerning claiming infallibility. As it is, we are all too conscious of the mistakes that can be made.

In this case, we goofed. We missed the comment ... which called the conflict.... Since Society heraldry has had a long-standing policy of protecting registration, even when it has been demonstrated to have been made in error, we can do nothing substantial to rectify this situation.

We do apologise.... We can do no more. (CL, 8 Aug 88, p. 1)

It is important to consider why we protect the names of famous personages and historical figures in the Society. It is certainly not because they are likely to complain about the infringement, since many are long centuries dead. Rather it is to protect our membership against offense or disturbance which might be caused by someone assuming the persona of an actual historical figure. (LoAR Aug 88, p. 18)

Alternative blazons cannot be considered at Laurel level. (LoAR Aug 88, p. 22)

The name was registered in December, 1987, not 1988, as stated on the letter of intent (... Even when we are ahead of ourselves on paperwork, we aren't that far ahead!). (LoAR 27 Nov 88, p. 7)

Any proposed alternate title must be submitted as a "line item" in a letter of intent with the same requirements for forms and documentation that are imposed for names. In the interests of equity, no fee will be charged, but the Principal Herald must include the title as a submission. (CL 7 May 89, p. 5)

The character, real or rumoured, of the group of submittors is irrelevant to the submission. They deserve precisely the same treatment as any other group submitting a household name and badge. The converse of this is that they must be held to the same standards. (LoAR 26 Mar 89, p. 22)

The style we strive for is that of an earlier period when heraldry was actually used for identification, not book plates and carriage embellishments. This is the underlying principle behind the ban on complexity and the requirements for contrast. (LoAR 30 Apr 89, p. 10)

As has frequently been noted before, not all items documented in period are suitable for heraldic charges. (LoAR 18 Jun 89, p. 10)

Since no emblazon was submitted with the letter of intent so that the commentors could not judge the accuracy of the blazon ... when checking for conflict, this must be returned.... The commentors must have an emblazon ... before they can comment adequately. (LoAR 18 Jun 89, p. 14)

Since no group was specified on her forms, we had to use the Kingdom for designation in the holding name (the Laurel staff cannot make guesses based on home address!). (LoAR 30 Jul 89, p. 2)

The submittor indicated on her forms her desire to allow her husband or daughter to have her device if she died or went inactive. If she plans to go inactive, she must file a transfer to a specific individual. If she wishes, she may file a copy of her "heraldic will" with the [Principal Herald's] Office and the Laurel Office to take effect in the event of her death, but the heir must be specified as a specific individual by name. (LoAR 30 Jul 89, pp. 2-3)

"Typos" are more than possible even in hand-written documents, as any palaeographer will assure you. (LoAR 30 Jul 89, p. 11)

It is heartbreaking to have to return something on technical grammatical ground like this, when it could be fixed by adding an accent and a silent "e", simply because the forms forbid any changes. (LoAR 30 Jul 89, p. 14)

We do not by tradition ban anachronistic names. (When a Viking can sit next to an Elizabethan lady at high table, it would probably be a futile effort.) (LoAR 30 Sep 89, p. 3)

Tradition and Laurel precedent dictate, for example, that regalia earned in one kingdom may be worn in another, even if the second kingdom does not recognise that insignia (for example, viscomital coronets). (CL 24 Nov 89, p. 6)

The submission was depicted on the emblazon forms and in the letter of intent on a round shield, causing much confusion to the commentors. While the submittor may display his submission on any shape shield he likes, the processing heralds should be sure to use the standard heater or lozenge for all device submissions to avoid such problems. (LoAR 26 Nov 89, p. 25)

Under Corpora and long-standing Board [of Directors] ruling Shires may not register Order names or armoury. Merely attributing the Shire's Order to the Kingdom on the letter of intent does not change this restriction. It is clear from the forms that this is intended as an order for the use of the Shire. Therefore, for it to be registered as a Kingdom Order, we would have to have some evidence that it was indeed to be reserved to the kingdom and given out by the Crown. (LoAR 26 Nov 89, p. 34)

Seventeen years is a long time for a single individual to have used a device and we understand his attachment to it. However, while we sympathize with the submittor's affection for the design and his long use of it, we cannot feel that long-time unregistered use of a name or device automatically proves its compatibility with the standards of our Society...: that would undermine the very point of registration by the College of Arms and the attempt to create Society-wide standards for armoury.... Use alone does not make an item acceptable any more than the rank of the submittor does. If they did, the very underpinnings of equitable registration of submissions, used since the early days of the Society, would be in question. (LoAR 26 Nov 89, pp. 41-42

Strictly speaking, we cannot let our own goofs set precedent. (LoAR 31 Dec 89, p. 14)

[The submitting herald] is correct when he notes that later period heraldry did place ermine on Or or, more commonly, Or on ermine. Most of the examples cited were granted or confirmed or appeared in rolls from the Tudor period and there is some doubt as to whether the use of ermined furs as a generally neutral colour was all that common in period. Be that as it may, long since the College of Arms decided that the interests of the Society, particularly its need for heraldry recognisable in battle conditions in poor weather or across a large encampment required somewhat higher standards of contrast than prevail in contemporary mundane heraldry. This decision was reviewed and discussed at some length in the course of the rules discussion and there was considerable support for strengthening the requirements for contrast, not weakening them. (LoAR 31 Dec 89, p. 24)

The documentation for the appeal includes a resubmission of the lengthy persona story to which the submittor is clearly very attached, but persona stories are irrelevant to registration. (LoAR 31 Dec 89, p. 26)

I would use as the rule of thumb for determining the validity of registering a badge whether there was a national officer for the kingdom office who had the right of warranting directly with the Crown, without intervention of any other kingdom office. (LoAR 21 Jan 90, p. 6)

As we do not consider alternatives at the Laurel level, the mention of an alternative badge is somewhat superfluous. (LoAR 21 Jan 90, p. 16)

Herald's titles are registered by the Society without any rank, with the rank determined by the kingdom to which the title is registered. (LoAR 21 Jan 90, p. 22)

There is a long-standing precedent, preserved in the new administrative regulations, banning the registration of badges for subsidiary offices when a badge/seal exists for the primary office. (LoAR 21 Jan 90, p. 22)

As the submittor specifically forbade the formation of a holding name, we have to return the device submission as well. (LoAR 21 Jan 90, p. 23)

The letter of intent indicated that the submission was being sent up even though the name was illegal in order to protect the armoury. This is technically using a "holding name" as a place marker on the submission and is against the administrative rules of the College: holding names are allowed only at Laurel level. (LoAR 25 Feb 90, p. 21)

The submittor did not offer new evidence on this point (which means that this was not a valid appeal). (LoAR 29 Apr 90, p. 1)

This was shown as on the letter of intent as a new name in conjunction with a transfer of her tinctureless badge to her new persona. This is incorrect and could have confused armorial.... Such transactions must be labelled as a change. When such a change is made, all armoury attached to the previous name will automatically be transferred to the new name unless specifically accompanied by a request for release or additional change. (LoAR 29 Apr 90, p. 2)

While the principle that a plain (i.e., undivided) tinctured field was not protected was written into the old rules, this principle existed by precedent long before it was added to the rules. We do not feel that this precedent has been voided by the new rules. (LoAR 28 May 90, p. 6)

It is unfair to the submittor to prevent registration of a valid submission pending action on another submission [by the same submittor] which may be invalid. If this policy were to be followed as a general rule, we would not act on any device or name if a letter for change of that submission were received prior to the point at which the earlier submission was scheduled to be considered. In some cases, this could result in passage of conflicting armoury/names in the interval before the change was considered. If the change were not then accepted, the submittor would lose both ways. (LoAR 28 May 90, p. 10)

As only at the Laurel level are holding names permitted, passing the submittor's armoury under the submitted name would mean that the submittor would be required to pay for a name change at Laurel level. This is not fair to the submittor.... As there was no name submission for the College to consider, we could not [pend the otherwise acceptable device and the name for the consideration of the College]. [Device returned for lack of name] (LoAR 28 May 90, p. 14)

Any order name or heraldic title which appears on the list of awards and titles or the list of heraldic titles which appears in the 1987 edition of the Armorial and Ordinary published by Free Trumpet Press under the auspices of the Laurel Office shall be considered to be registered for the purposes of section A of the passages on protection in the Administrative Handbook. Any item which does not otherwise appear in Laurel correspondence shall be considered to have an acceptance date of August 1, 1987. (CL, 31 Jul 90, p. 2)

Given the popularity of D & D in the Society, we feel that we really must protect these entities. (LoAR 17 Jun 90, p. 14)

Position

As the change in position [of the secondary charges] derives entirely from the change in type of primary charge, there is only one difference: the change in type of primary charge. (LoAR 21 Jan 90, p. 17)

The radical and clear-cut difference in position for a primary charge to a position definitely in sinister canton must be considered [a] difference. (Note that, as under the old rules, such positional changes must be considered on a case by case basis as they can be affected by the presence of other charges and other design elements.) (LoAR 25 Feb 90, p. 3)

In point of fact, the [charges] are not totally abased from the normal position for such charges and so no difference can be derived from the change in position. (LoAR 17 Jun 90, p. 14)

Posture

There is ... only a minor point [of difference] for the type of tertiary, since the change of posture is derived from the change in type of charge. (LoAR 25 Jan 87, p. 24)

The position of the bird was blazoned originally as volant, but the posture of the wings, body and legs is clearly much closer to that which we associate with "striking". (LoAR 29 Mar 87, p. 12)

It might be suggested to the submittor that the style and posture of the human figure [courant] is not really period. (LoAR 29 Mar 87, p. 15)

Courant is only a minor point of difference from passant (Determination of Difference, p. 2, under posture). (LoAR 24 May 87, p. 15)

The position of the [monster's] tail must be specified since it is not the norm. (LoAR 14 Jun 87, p. 2)

[Beast statant erect] The beast is not truly salient, as blazoned on the letter of intent, since its spine is in a perfectly perpendicular position. (LoAR Jul 88, p. 15)

[The principal herald] has argued that a "properly drawn" pegasus volant will have the body essentially horizontal while the same beast rampant has the body essentially vertical. Unfortunately, there is no standard default depiction for monsters volant in the Society (the issue tends not to arise in mundane heraldry!) and the body position tends to vary somewhat. [LoAR July 88, p. 20)

Only one major point of difference can be derived from the cumulative changes of posture. (LoAR 27 Aug 89, p. 27)

There is difference for type of primary charge and another for position of primary charge here.... While posture is not generally counted between dissimilar items (e.g., a flower and a deer) in this case, the [dolphin] could be (at least in Society heraldry!) in a posture directly analogous to that of the [bird] displayed, if it were affronty. Since it is not, an additional difference for posture may be derived. (This is analogous to counting one difference for a charge being a horse, not a bird, and another for its being to dexter rather than to sinister, which we have fairly frequently done in the past.) (LoAR 17 Jun 90, p. 8)

Precedent

Since they seem to have been used exclusively as royal badges, sunbursts with rays Or may not be used in Society heraldry. Sunbursts of other colours may be used freely. (LoAR 27 Sep 86, p. 6)

The original submission of the name change [to "Thorin [patronymic]"] was returned because the name Thorin was held by Laurel to be an exclusively dwarven name both in Tolkien and in Norse myth and therefore not eligible for use in the Society. The submittor has presented an impressive array of arguments in support of his position that the name is in fact compatible with the period ambience which we are trying to create and that the bulk of the populace would not (and in fact do not) feel that he was claiming dwarven descent by using the name. Taken by themselves, they add only plausibility to the argument that the name could have been used in period for a human. The existence of the Irish patronymic form "O Torain" cited by MacLysaght (Surnames of Ireland, p. 288), which would derive from a nominative form of "Torin" argues that it was actually used. Therefore, acceptance of this name should not be taken as a general precedent for non-human names in the Society. (LoAR 27 Sep 86, p. 2)

For the purposes of AR2c, where it is stated that "in simple cases only, a party field tinctured either all dark or all light may use a complex line of partition", a simple case shall be defined as follows:

1. No charge shall significantly obscure the line of division.

2. The line of division shall be one of those specified in AR2a, i.e., shall divide the field into no more than four parts.

3. Where two colours are involved, they must be of sufficient contrast, i.e., must be a combination of gules with sable, vert or azure. (LoAR 26 Oct 86, pp. 2, 10-11) (See also: LoAR 28 Jun 87, p. 2)

Any period form of anchor, including the curved-arm, barbed ancient or straight-armed form, may be used in Society heraldry. (CL 7 Dec 86, p. 3)

By tradition, "a sword is a sword" when counting difference. (LoAR 28 Dec 86, p. 17)

Cross-gender names are so well-established a tradition in the Society that it would be pedantic to object that the byname is masculine in form. However, ... Gaelic would normally demand the feminine form of the byname. (LoAR 25 Jan 87, p. 7)

NOTE: We considered at some length whether it would be proper to issue a general ruling rescinding the current ruling which makes fields divided of [an] even number of pallets or bars "neutral" where an odd number is not. After drawing up several examples of fields divided evenly and unevenly, it became clear that contrast of overlying ordinaries such as chiefs and bordures of the same class as the dominant tincture (i.e., the one with an even number of ordinaries on an uneven field) is considerably poorer when the field is unevenly divided. The distinction between the neutral field evenly divided and the "field plus ordinaries" which is unevenly divided is drawn from mundane heraldic tradition. It is, however, applied with far less vigor since the charges which come into conflict with the Rule of Tincture in the Society because of the distinction (the chief and the bordure) are largely exempt from that restriction in mundane heraldry. Our conclusion was that it would not be feasible to drop the even-uneven distinction at this time without also modifying Society practice with regard to a chief or a bordure to follow mundane precedent. We are not prepared to do that at this time. (LoAR 25 Jan 87, p. 9)

We still have major objections, personal and institutional, to pawprints as heraldic charges, but the Society precedent in their favour is strong. (LoAR 25 Jan 87, p. 13)

While "plain fields" are specifically not protected from conflict furs are not, strictly speaking, a plain field but a specialized form of semy and there is precedence for protecting famous seme fields (e.g., France).... In reviewing this issue, we considered how ermine fields simply charged had been treated in the past and were forced to the inescapable conclusion that Society tradition does not protect the ermine field of Brittany unless it appears in the context of quartering or attached to a name which is strongly redolent of Brittany. (LoAR 28 Feb 87, p. 2)

Note that solid evidence for the use of the form Lucina as a given name in period was derived from Withycombe (p. 200, under Lucy). It should not be taken as precedent for the use of the names of stars as given names in the Society. (LoAR 25 Jan 87, p. 14)

By long-standing Society precedent, a name which appears so close to Rhiannon, whether it is derived from it or not, cannot really be used with a unicorn or horse as an element of the related armory. (LoAR 25 Jan 87, p. 22)

[A rose overall Or, slipped and leaved vert] It might be argued that in this case the slipping and leaving are non-trivial and should be required to obey AR4 which dictates that charges overall should be required to have adequate contrast with the field.... However, in this case, ... we elect to allow an exception as specifically provided for in AR4. This exception is peculiar to this submission and should not be taken as setting any general precedents. (LoAR 28 Feb 87, p. 7)

Note that acceptance of the given name [Tezar] should not be taken as a precedent. It is not compatible with either of the languages which could be taken to be the primary language (i.e., Latin or Greek) and has dubious linguistic support. However, since Master Baldwin specifically promised to accept the name, we feel bound to honour that promise. (LoAR 29 Mar 87, p. 4)

Both my predecessors have with great consistency upheld the rule that both elements of a patronymic name must be derived from the same language or a language combination that would demonstrably have occurred (e.g., "mac" plus an English given name form in the Lowlands of Scotland). (LoAR 29 Mar 87, p. 19)

In view of its strong suggestiveness of a "Hand of Glory", a hand appaumy or averse enflamed may not be used as a charge in Society heraldry. (LoAR 26 Apr 87, p. 9)

The wave crest has, by consensus of the College, been barred from general use in Society heraldry since 1983. Given the strong feeling on the part of the commentors that this usage is not acceptable style and the lack of indication of period usage in the citation from Woodward..., there seems no reason to change this precedent. (LoAR 14 Jun 87, p. 6)

It was specifically asked "whether this is a valid application of the principle that occasionally two large minors may be sufficient to clear a conflict with mundane arms." The phrasing here implies that such a principle has and should be accepted by the Laurel Office and the College of Arms. It has not been and should not be. If the principle is not valid then the question of an application of the principle is moot. (LoAR 14 Jun 87, p. 6)

By long-standing Society precedent braided knotwork is not permitted for Society armoury, however common it may be in Society artwork. (LoAR 26 Jul 87, p. 12)

Wavy crested is an out-of-period construct. It was first banned as a line of division by Laurel in 1976. This ban was confirmed by a different Laurel in 1983. Neither the College nor Laurel sees any reason to change that restriction. (LoAR 26 Jul 87, p. 13)

As an ordinary wreathed of one colour (or "cabled", as the original blazon had it) has previously been disallowed (February, 1985), we have substituted an orle invected: any interior diapering would not contribute difference in any case. (LoAR Aug 87, p. 6)

Society precedent indicates that complete difference of charge cannot exist between two quadrupeds. (LoAR Aug 87, p. 10)

As long ago as July, 1980, it was ruled that the use of ordinaries cut off by the quartered division would create the presumption of quartering and thus compel return of a device. (LoAR Aug 87, p. 11)

Although we are inclined to feel that the precedent ... (by which an armorial item was returned for conflict with a crest) is not necessarily a desirable one, under the current order this does conflict with the crest of [English Earl]. [Device returned] (LoAR 31 Oct 87, p. 11)

It has previously been ruled that translations of such generic names as these [Riversmeet, Aberafonydd] may be registered if the group with which it conflicts [by translation] gives permission. (LoAR 28 Nov 87, p. 11)

Although [the principal herald] blazoned the gussets as "debased", long Society precedent indicates there is no such heraldic charge (gussets themselves are a bit controversial as a period charge). (LoAR 19 Dec 87, p. 19)

The established precedent for pawprints as a Society charge require[s] that [they] be registered. (LoAR 21 Feb 88, p. 7)

We have long since held that registrations made in error, while protected, do not create a precedent. (LoAR Jun 88, p. 17)

There is overwhelming precedent for allowing spouses and children of those with registered bynames to use those bynames, even if they are no longer "legal". (LoAR Aug 88, p. 15)

Symbols associated mundanely with the medical profession are restricted to those with appropriate mundane medical qualifications, i.e., medical doctors, registered nurses and mundanely qualified emergency medical technicians. (LoAR 18 Sep 88, pp. 5-6)

The field treatment "honeycombed", consisting of a variation on masoning in which the "cells" are equilateral hexagons, as in a honeycomb seen edge on, is hereby accepted for use in the Society. (LoAR 18 Sep 88, p. 8)

Effective immediately, the registration of a household name will not carry protection against infringement by others who may, through use of the name in their personal names, claim to be members of the household. Household names will continue to be protected against infringement by the names of official groups, orders, heraldic titles, other household names, etc. For example, the name of House Smith would not prevent registration of the name Peter Smith, but would prevent registration of House Green Smith, the Order of the Iron Smith and the title of Poor Smith Herald. (CL 20 May 89, p. 6)

PRECEDENT: For the purposes of the rule on Armorial Identifiability, any ordinary placed at the center of the shield (e.g., a pale, pall, bend, fess, etc.) may be fimbriated, even if it uses a complex line of division, provided that the identifiability of the charge and the line of division are not significantly reduced by the voiding or fimbriation or any other element of the design (e.g., the placement of superimposed charges). (LoAR 26 Nov 89, p. 23)

Strictly speaking, we cannot let our own goofs set precedent. (LoAR 31 Dec 89, p. 14)

We shall continue to register submissions containing pawprints for Society use. (CL 13 May 90, p. 2)

There is a long-standing precedent in the College for banning charges, including laurel wreaths, below piles on the grounds that a properly drawn period pile would not allow space for another charge to rest, in whole or in part, below the pile. (LoAR 25 Feb 90, p. 19)

It is certainly a possibility to consider that the phrase "alone on the field" should be taken literally in the new rules and the significant difference of charge license apply even where the primary charges are themselves charged.... After much wrestling with this issue, we have come to the conclusion that the letter of the law in this case is also the spirit of the law and thus section X.2 [Difference of Primary Charges rule] of the new rules can apply to charged primaries. However, it must be stressed that the tertiary charges cannot significantly diminish the identifiability of the primaries in each case (by definition, both must be charged or else the two coats would be clear under the new rules). Also, it is presumed that the "visual conflict" rule may apply in cases such as that cited above where charges of the same type and tincture are modified with no other modifications. (LoAR 29 Apr 90, p. 5)

Any order name or heraldic title which appears on the list of awards and titles or the list of heraldic titles which appears in the 1987 edition of the Armorial and Ordinary published by Free Trumpet Press under the auspices of the Laurel Office shall be considered to be registered for the purposes of section A of the passages on protection in the Administrative Handbook. Any item which does not otherwise appear in Laurel correspondence shall be considered to have an acceptance date of August 1, 1987. (CL, 31 Jul 90, p. 2)

Pre-existing precedents are not rescinded by issuance of the new rules unless they are specifically contravened by the new rules. (LoAR 17 Jun 90, p. 18)

Presumption

[The submittor's] last submission, although returned on other grounds, came perilously close to infringing on the arms of Struan Robertson (it was submitted under the name Robert Struanson). If I may quote [one commenter], "Now we have Robert...macDuncan...and a device which is a major-plus-minor from both Duncan and from Robertson. This is compounded by the fact that the Duncan/Duncanson families are related to the Robertson clan, as evidenced by the similarity of their coats; the Duncans also use the Robertson tartan....This is too much to ask of coincidence; in my opinion, the submittor is trying, by his choice of name and device, to lay claim to a specific mundane coat." The name and device together constitute infringement. To pass the name, we have returned the device. (LoAR 27 Sep 86, p. 12)

[Ekaterina Petrovna (Surname)] The consensus was that ... the conjunction of the names Catherine and Peter in a Russian context were arguably "too much". Taken with the double-headed eagle sable, used by both the Holy Roman Empire and the Russian Empire as symbol of their being the "New Rome", it becomes definitely "too much". In order to pass the device, the patronymic has been dropped. (LoAR 26 Oct 86, p. 6)

[Elffin of Mona] There was a general nervousness about this name. Many felt that the given name combined with a device that was strongly reminiscent of the heirs of Elendil would be offensive to many. Even more worrisome to the Laurel staff was the fact the Elffin is the name of the individual whom Welsh myth claims plucked the infant Taliesin from the sea, Taliesin who becomes a byword in literature for Druidic knowledge, knowledge particularly associated with the isle of Anglesey (Mona), last stronghold of the Druids. The name itself, which caused some twitches, becomes intolerable in the context of the oak tree under the "summer stars". Giving the submittor the benefit of the doubt on intent, we have compromised by accepting the name and returning the device. (LoAR 26 Oct 86, p. 6)

[Quarterly sable and gules, three lions dormant in pale within a bordure Or] The closeness [of] this device to the arms of the English royal family, particularly several of the cadet branches which used a bordure for difference, made many in the College rather uncomfortable and any redesign should attempt to diminish the strong visual suggestion of England here. (LoAR 25 Jan 87, p. 25)

The precedent in this case appears to be the badge of Albert von Drechenveldt which was returned in December, 1985, for appearing to be a "no outhouses" symbol. Since the tincture of the ordinaries in that case was Or, evidently the use of gules is not a consideration. Not also that in the Discouraged practices section (X3) merely specified "the bend-plus-bordure ‘no X’ motif". That this is a design that well could have existed in period (and show cadency from a family [arms]) is rendered irrelevant by the problems raised by the essentially twentieth-century perceptions of the majority of the membership. My feeling, however, is that rendering the bend and bordure in different tinctures would remove the visual suggestion of the "no [charges]" sign and thus resolve the problem. (LoAR 25 Jan 87, p. 29)

[(Name) Son of (Tree)] This implied too strongly that he was claiming to be the son of a tree so we have simplified the byname to "of the [Tree]", as suggested by several commenters. (LoAR 28 Feb 87, p. 9)

[(Name) Chastellain l’Angevine] While Chastellain by itself was a not uncommon occupational surname by the end of our period, in conjunction with "Angevin" it struck us as a bit presumptuous. Those in the College long enough to recall the lists of dynastic names compiled in the tenure of Master Wilhelm will recall that the Angevin dynasty of England (as some historians prefer to refer to the early Plantagenets) played no small role. (LoAR 28 Feb 87, p. 9)

For good or ill, Society tradition has protected the names of mundane kings and regnant princes as being "important" by definition. To say that Pictish kings collectively or individually were less important than, for example, Richard the Lionheart or Frederick Barbarossa may well be true, but it does not change the ban on conflicting with their names.... In this instance, where the only examples of the given name offered were Pictish kings, we are compelled to take the conservative line. (LoAR 28 Feb 87, p. 18)

As one may not combine the White Rose of York and the name of York, it is forbidden to combine the Red Rose of Lancaster with the use of the name Lancaster. (LoAR 29 Mar 87, p. 21)

It ... seems necessary to correct a misapprehension in the Letter of Intent where it was stated that "a priory, unlike its parent abbey, has no territory jurisdiction..." We could go on for hours on this subject [and have been known to!] but will quote one of the briefer sources: "An abbey is a monastery whose head was a monk with the rank of abbot... A priory was ruled by a prior. In purpose and function, in number of monks and size of buildings there need be no visible difference, although generally an abbey tends to be the larger establishment, suitable to the higher status of its superior, but this is not necessarily so. In the great monastic order of Cluny, for example, only the original house ... of that name was an abbey, all the offshoots or daughter-houses were priories, even though many exceeded abbeys fo other orders in size, wealth and importance." [Stewart Cruden, Scottish Abbeys: An Introduction to the medieval Abbeys and Priories of Scotland, p. 3] (LoAR 26 Jul 87, pp. 2-3)

The conjunction of the name Katherine and the black eagle of the Imperial Russian arms in the Russian languages was "too much". (LoAR 26 Jul 87, p. 13)

The submittor states that the Campbells were actually lords of Lochow or of some other seat and not of Argyll. Unfortunately, her own documentation indicates that Sir Duncan Campbell of Lochow, created Lord Campbell in 1445 and chief of the clan, assumed the designation of Argyll. The use of the name Campbell of Argyll in modern mundane usage is tantamount to a claim of kinship with the chief and it will be so taken by the bulk of members of the Society, causing offense to some....

[The submittor] provides copious extracts from Burke to support the contention that members of the clan may use differenced versions of the chief's arms. Unfortunately, the examples support the original contention of the College that the use of the clearly cadenced arms ... implies a claim to kinship with the head of the clan, which is not permitted. The general feeling of the College was that an allusion to the Campbell arms or badges might be permissible with the simple name Campbell, but that the arms differenced went beyond the differences required for what Scots heraldry charmingly calls a "stranger in blood". (LoAR Aug 87, pp. 15-16)

To take the arms of the Hohenzollerns ("Quarterly argent and sable") ..., and then effectively place dimidiated forms of the arms of the Hohenzollern rulers of Brandenburg and Prussia ("Argent, an eagle displayed gules" and "Argent, an eagle displayed sable", respectively) pushes the edges of acceptability. [Device registered] (LoAR 18 Sep 88, p. 3)

[FitzGerald] Given [the name], the arms become rather presumptuous.... They differ the well-documented period arms of FitzGerald primarily by adding a monkey, which is the crest added to those arms by the Earl of Leinster, head of the FitzGerald family. Taken with the name, this is a bit too much. (LoAR 18 Sep 88, p. 13)

[Order of the Long Rangers] While the commentors cringed a bit at the assonance, the consensus seemed to be that the name would be acceptable provided that no armoury was submitted with allusions to the Lone Ranger (e.g., masks, billets argent, etc.). (LoAR 30 Oct 88, p. 4)

You cannot be the son of a tree. (LoAR 27 Nov 88, p. 6)

The arms of Farnese ("Or, six fleurs de lys azure.") deserve extra protection because they were a sovereign ruling house. (LoAR 27 Nov 88, p. 9)

Neither "squire" nor "apprentice" nor "protege" is a title of rank. As the designation is not a title of rank, it cannot be restricted from use under then on use of titles in NR13. (LoAR 27 Nov 88, p. 10)

The question ... arises whether Brandenburg itself was a dynastic name "within the meaning of the act". It does not appear to have been. (LoAR 27 Nov 88, p. 11)

The conjunction of the lions rampant gules on an Or field (from the royal arms of Scotland), the thistle (the royal badge of Scotland), and the saltire azure on a metallic field (the St. Andrew's flag) seemed more than a little excessive to us, particularly when conjoined to the surname of so many kings of Scotland [Stewart]. (LoAR 27 Nov 88, p. 19)

While Isengrim, like Reynard, may have been used as a given name in period, the conjunction of the given name of the lupine archetype with a byname indicating a woodland origin appears to be too close to the legendary Isengrim for comfort. (LoAR 27 Nov 88, p. 21)

Uniting the boar's head badge of the Campbell chiefs with their arms was overly presumptuous when taken into the context of the use of the Campbell surname. (LoAR 15 Jan 89, p. 12)

[Quarterly azure and azure, ermined, on a cross floretty engrailed between in bend two (beasts) heads jessant-de-lis, a cross floretty] This device pushes close to the limits of acceptability from the point of view of complexity and presumption, but falls just this side of disaster. (LoAR 26 Feb 89, p. 9)

Laurel can recall telling a would-be submittor ... that if the Society only protected a dozen mundane insignia, [the insignia of the Knights of Malta] would be one of them. We see no reason to change our view now and feel that the original insignia of the Order of St. John of Jerusalem (better known as the knights of Malta) should be rendered the protection offered sovereign states for they certainly functioned as a sovereign entity for a significant part of their history, ruling first Rhodes and then Malta as de facto sovereign states. (LoAR 26 Feb 89, p. 19)

[Avram Moishe ha Cohen] When the name was fully translated into English forms from the transliterated Hebrew (Abraham Moses the High Priest), it caused major twitches which were transformed into major convulsions when the device which combines the colours associated with the Zionist movements and the two most recognizable symbols of the Jewish faith (the menorah and the Star of David). (LoAR 30 Apr 89, p. 15)

The use of the fleurs-de-lis in orle here on the azure field creates precisely the appearance of a field azure, semy-de-lis Or, upon which the [charge] has been placed. As this field is not permitted in the Society due to its close association with the royalty of France, the submission must be returned. (LoAR 30 Apr 89, p. 17)

Several of the commentors still felt uncomfortable with the use of Atalanta and a stag's head. However, the bulk of opinion was that this did not pass the boundaries of presumption if this is the only allusion to the myth of Atalanta in the device. (LoAR 30 Apr 89, p. 17)

There was strong feeling in the College that the orle [flory counterflory] infringed on the royal tressure of Scotland. (LoAR 21 May 89, p. 21)

[A sprig of peascods gules] While [it] is correct to note the defining usage of the planta genista in mundane heraldry in the vegetative badge of the Angevins which gave its name to the Plantagenet dynasty, the badge [there] seems to have been used in its proper tinctures and so would not conflict with this submission. (LoAR 27 Aug 89, p. 12)

Primary Charge

Primary charges should not be demoted when a charge is placed overall: in mundane usage it is the charge overall which is considered to have been added for cadency, just as are secondaries around the primary charge. The blazon represents the reality: the primary charge will remain the charge which lies closest to the center of the field in the plane closest to the field. Under certain circumstances, charges overall can be held to have equal weight, but this will not "demote" the original primary charge, if the two are drawn in proper proportion. (LoAR 26 Apr 87, p. 10)

The primary charges on both coats must be "themselves uncharged" for a major and minor point to be derived from the simple change of type of primary charge. (LoAR 19 Mar 88, p. 18)

It has long been our feeling that heralds can count above six, when necessary: most have ten fingers. Seriously, period sources blazon charges up to nine or ten fairly regularly when they are primary or secondary charges (as opposed to charges "semy" or tertiaries) and this should be permitted when the numbers are not excessive. (The numbers seven and nine appear particularly frequently, possibly because of numerological considerations.) (LoAR Aug 88, p. 12)

The radical and clear-cut difference in position for a primary charge to a position definitely in sinister canton must be considered [a] difference. (Note that, as under the old rules, such positional changes must be considered on a case by case basis as they can be affected by the presence of other charges and other design elements.) (LoAR 25 Feb 90, p. 3)

"Proper"

Antlers proper have been defined as "white or light yellow brown" (Wilhelm von Schlussel, 26 December, 1983). (LoAR 27 Sep 86, p. 11)

The [copper charges proper], whose default tincture must be heraldically Or. (LoAR 27 Sep 86, p. 14)

There is a precedent in Society usage for the unusual bordure with the device of [Name] ("[Tincture], a bordure of flames proper") (LoAR 28 Dec 86, p. 2)

Unfortunately, since the breed of wolf specified (the Alaskan tundra wolf), like all breeds which change colouration with the season, varies in tincture widely, there is no way of telling what "proper" should be. Therefore, we have blazoned the heads, as they were drawn on the emblazon, simply as "wolf's heads argent".... (LoAR 28 Dec 86, p. 8)

Since human flesh [proper] is a "light" tincture, it has insufficient contrast with the argent field. (LoAR 25 Jan 87, p. 19)

Since the ferret ... can exist in several colorations, it cannot be proper. (LoAR 25 Jan 87, p. 20)

This device totters on the edge of acceptability: it strains at the proper use of proper (sic), with the beast-monster as well as the trees being proper. (LoAR 25 Jan 87, p. 20)

The grape vine [proper] has insufficient contrast with the [gules] field: the brown vine and green leaves are almost invisible, although the grapes themselves, carefully placed on the [primary charge], show up reasonably well. If you consider the vine a major design element, the device must be returned for breaching the Rule of Tincture. (LoAR 25 Jan 87, p. 23)

Since the brideskold can appear in various tinctures and forms, there can be no "proper" and a specific form must be specified. (LoAR 28 Feb 87, p. 18)

What appeared on the emblazon sheet were not flames proper. It was a base of flames Or, with the line of delineation from the field gules (it was not thick enough to call it fimbriation). This is an improper use of proper. (LoAR 29 Mar 87, pp. 15-16)

The mountain lion [proper] on the emblazon sheet is shown as a dark brown, but all our sources show the beast as a much lighter tincture that could only be blazoned as Or, so the cat would have insufficient contrast with the argent field. (LoAR 29 Mar 87, p. 21)

Proper charges must always have "sufficient contrast" [with the field or charges they overlie]. (LoAR 29 Mar 87, p. 24)

The "proper" tincture for a boar's head is brown. (LoAR 21 Feb 88, p. 2)

There is no true proper for bone: this would best be blazoned as argent. (LoAR 21 Feb 88, p. 13)

The primary criterion for determining whether a charge proper has sufficient contrast is the visibility of the portion of the charge which identifies it. (LoAR 23 Apr 88, p. 18)

[Or, two bottlenosed dolphins proper] The dolphins are grey (i.e., argent) which breaks tincture by being placed on the metal field. (LoAR 29 May 88, p. 20)

As a pell has no fixed form or material, it is difficult to see how it could be "proper". (We have seen modern and period exemplars made from various kinds of woods, with and without metal sheathing, from cloth and from metals, even - in the case of modern pells - plastics.) (LoAR 18 Jun 89, p. 11)

An acorn proper is defined as brown by both mundane and Society convention. (LoAR 30 Jul 89, p. 9)

The wing was blazoned on the letter of intent and the forms as proper and is in fact brown so it cannot be reblazoned in any heraldic tincture. If there had been any method of determining what sort of wing this was intended to be, we would have pended this for appropriate commentary and conflict-checking. However, the depiction of the wing is such that ... it was exceedingly unclear what type of wing this should be. (LoAR 31 Dec 89, p. 25)

[Tambourine] The frame is dark wood and the "jingles" are argent which is usual for such things and may be covered by the terms "proper". (LoAR 28 May 90, p. 11)


Q

Quartered Arms

The partition by a complex [wavy] line at present automatically frees a device from the restriction on quartering and so this device is legitimate, although certainly suggestive of the intent to quarter. It is the more disturbing since a number of Continental jurisdictions regularly quarter with one or both of the partition lines being a complex line such as wavy or embattled. (LoAR 25 Jan 87, p. 13)

As long ago as July, 1980, it was ruled that the use of ordinaries cut off by the quartered division would create the presumption of quartering and thus compel return of a device. (LoAR Aug 87, p. 11)

 


R

Rainbow

The rainbow is too complex a charge to fimbriate. Moreover, the natural rainbow is by definition a colour plus metal and therefore neutral charge (see the Glossary of Terms under "proper".) (LoAR 28 Feb 87, p. 20)

The collocation of the chief triangular and the [debruising] rainbow is definitely not period style and the device as a whole is strongly reminiscent of modern "decal" design. (LoAR 29 Mar 87, p. 16)

[A bend coloured as a natural rainbow] This is a clear case of non-period style. Such rainbow tinctured charges as this have been banned from Society use for some years. (LoAR 28 Nov 87, p. 7)

[Rioghbhardan (a documented given which means "royal bard"), and on the device a rainbow and a harp] At least one herald also found the rainbow to contain an allusion to senior bardic circles, since only the most senior bards were allowed to wear seven colours (such as are contained in the natural rainbow). [Name registered, device returned] (LoAR 19 Mar 88, p. 15)

Rayonny

The line of division was submitted as "erased" and accompanied by documentation from a fourteenth-century Welsh heraldic tract which did indeed show that "erased" was a period form of usage for that partition line that is shown in our standard references as "rayonny". While we agree that, all things being equal, it is better to use a period term than a modern one, in this instance it seems preferable to retain the term "rayonny".... The usage of "erased" as a line of division is so obscure that we were unable to find it in any of the standard texts used by herald artists and local heralds throughout the Society.... This being so, the natural instinct of the heraldic artist will be to consider this as a heraldic neologism, derived from the usage of erased in the depiction of beast's heads, which would result in a line of partition rather different from that which appears on the emblazon. (LoAR 29 Mar 87, p. 11)

Please request the submittor to draw the rayonny correctly, with all the rays equal in size and evenly curved. (LoAR 24 May 87, p. 3)

Regalia

Tradition and Laurel precedent dictate, for example, that regalia earned in one kingdom may be worn in another, even if the second kingdom does not recognise that insignia (for example, viscomital coronets). (CL 24 Nov 89, p. 6)

Release of Branch Armory

When any Society branch other than a Kingdom goes out of existence, its ownership rights over its name and armoury revert to the Kingdom in which it was located at the time it passed out of existence.... Names and armoury of Society branches which have reverted to a Kingdom in this manner may be released by joint action of the Crown and Kingdom Seneschal, provided these procedures are followed: a. the intended release must be advertised in the Kingdom newsletter with adequate time for the populace to comment on the appropriateness of the release; b. Once the advertisement period is complete, the notice of intent to release must be published to the College of Arms in a letter of intent properly circulated to the College of Arms by the Principal Herald or designated representative.... c. After the appropriate period for commentary and objection from the College has elapsed, Laurel shall evaluate any objection to the proposed release.... Laurel shall then announce the release of the appropriate items in a letter of acceptance and return.... The ownership rights in the name and armoury of defunct Kingdoms shall revert to the Board at the time the Kingdom passes out of existence. Such names may be released only by action of the Board after due advertisement of the intent to release in Tournaments Illuminated and the Kingdom newsletters. (CL 23 Jan 90, p. 3)

Religion

We have to be very careful not to go overboard in calling offense with regard to religion lest we ban religion altogether and cause offense by that ban itself. (LoAR 25 Feb 90, p. 12)

Reproducibility

Visually it does look like a quilt design, as noted by several commenters. While this is not in and of itself a problem, the fact that the cross must not only be throughout but of a precise size to reproduce the design is. Not only can we not guarantee its accurate reproduction by an heraldic artist, but such size-dependent designs are not period style. (LoAR 26 Nov 89, p. 36)

[Three flames of fire between two wings conjoined, displayed and inverted] The flames are so reduced in size by the design that they are virtually unidentifiable. Moreover, there is really no way to guarantee that this design will be drawn in this particular manner, even through a long and precise blazon. These two facts together clearly point to a design that is not period style. (LoAR 31 Mar 90, p. 16)

Reptile - Serpent

The primary charge [a Norse serpent] could not be accurately reconstructed from the blazon by a competent heraldic artist. There are literally dozens of Norse serpents possible in the various documented styles. (LoAR 28 Feb 87, p. 16)

Reptile - Snake

The differences between the two serpents [cobra coiled affronty vs. rattlesnake coiled to sinister] in position and type are so weak as to be virtually negligible. The two may be blazoned differently for canting or symbolic purposes, but are not significantly different visually. (LoAR Aug 87, p. 10) (See also: LoAR 27 Sep 86, p. 10)

Restricted Charge

The red rose of Lancaster, like the white rose of York, deserves extra protection versus Society badges which should differ by more than one major point from this particularly famous royal badge. (LoAR 28 Dec 86, p. 14)

[The submittor] should be reminded that, since his badge uses the restricted insignia of the chivalry [an orle of gold chain], it may not be borne or used by anyone not of that rank. (LoAR 28 Feb 87, p. 4)

Although they are a documented period charge, the cronals are clearly too close visually to the reserved crown/coronet to be accepted for use in the Society. (LoAR 28 Feb 87, p. 21)

The single laurel or bay leaf is not restricted to the members of the Order of the Laurel. (LoAR 29 May 88, p. 7)

The Staff of Aesculapius has been reserved in the past for those with mundane medical qualifications, the intent being to avoid confusion in the case of a medical emergency at a Society event (the same motivation for restricting certain medical occupational surnames).

PRECEDENT: Symbols associated mundanely with the medical profession are restricted to those with appropriate mundane medical qualifications, i.e., medical doctors, registered nurses and mundanely qualified emergency medical technicians. (LoAR 18 Sep 88, pp. 5-6)

While the fleam is a particularly appropriate charge for those with a medical background, it is not so closely associated with medics that it should be reserved. (LoAR 26 Feb 89, p. 13)

Laurel can recall telling a would-be submittor ... that if the Society only protected a dozen mundane insignia, [the insignia of the Knights of Malta] would be one of them. We see no reason to change our view now and feel that the original insignia of the Order of St. John of Jerusalem (better known as the knights of Malta) should be rendered the protection offered sovereign states for they certainly functioned as a sovereign entity for a significant part of their history, ruling first Rhodes and then Malta as de facto sovereign states. (LoAR 26 Feb 89, p. 19)

The use of the fleurs-de-lis in orle here on the azure field creates precisely the appearance of a field azure, semy-de-lis Or, upon which the [charge] has been placed. As this field is not permitted in the Society due to its close association with the royalty of France, the submission must be returned. (LoAR 30 Apr 89, p. 17)

The use of the crown is reserved to royal peers, kingdom arms and principality arms. It has been specifically ruled as long ago a 1981 that a badge containing a coronet or crown may only be registered by royal peers and may only be used by royal peers. (LoAR 21 May 89, p. 17)

There was strong feeling in the College that the orle [flory counterflory] infringed on the royal tressure of Scotland. (LoAR 21 May 89, p. 21)

[Double tressure flory at the outer edge] After a considerable amount of comparisons of the various depictions of the reserved royal tressure of Scotland, we decided that this tressure was just too close to be acceptable for Society use. (LoAR 18 Jun 89, p. 12)

Rhiannon

By long-standing Society precedent, a name which appears so close to Rhiannon, whether it is derived from it or not, cannot really be used with a unicorn or horse as an element of the related armory. (LoAR 25 Jan 87, p. 22) (See also: LoAR 27 Sep 86, p. 12)

Roundel

For purposes of difference a moon in her complement and a plate are functionally identical. (LoAR 25 Jan 87, p. 17)

There is not complete difference of charge [between a hexagon and a roundel of the same color]. (LoAR 29 Mar 87, p. 20)

Rule of Excessive Anomaly

[In pale a mullet of four straight and four wavy rays and a bird statant to sinister, wings addorsed and inverted, proper between two flaunches, each charged with a Maltese cross, fitched at the foot] This device runs perilously close to the limit on anomalies and is decidedly poor style. (LoAR 27 Sep 86, p. 3)

The comments on discouraged practices say "A submission may incorporate one of these discouraged practices and still be marginally acceptable, but it costs the submittor the benefit of the doubt." This does not mean that particularly flagrant examples of any of the discouraged practices may not be in and of themselves grounds for return.... (LoAR 26 Oct 86, p. 11)

[In pale a quadruped holding in its mouth a squirrel, and a mount] This is a case where the tally of the anomalies adds up to a device which is not acceptable. In period style, the [quadruped] would more normally be statant atop the base, not floating in mid-air; the addition of the minor charge in [a color], which has a low contrast with the [color field], is another anomaly, while others felt that the dead squirrel bordered on the morbid. Taken individually, each of these items would have been acceptable; cumulatively, they were considered to create a non-period device. (LoAR 26 Oct 86, p. 11)

The cumulative effect of the anomalies involved in this device are just too strong. [Three -- fimbriated plate, dolmen issuant from base, "ranch gate"-style dolmen.] (LoAR 30 Nov 86, p. 11)

Gyronny from any point other than the center of a field or charge is definitely an anomaly, that is the reason that the visual complexity added by the use of colours has been limited.... The poor contrast with the field was another anomaly. For a group badge, two anomalies were felt to be excessive. (LoAR 29 Mar 87, p. 3)

Where one anomaly may be acceptable, two may be marginal, three will be unacceptable, even where each anomaly, taken in itself would not cause a submission to be returned. (LoAR 29 Mar 87, p. 12)

The use of the late and unusual charge of the yale..., the chief dove-tailed and the use of the gore are all "allowable anomalies" that have been permitted for Society use. However, the use of all three together, with the added anomaly of the demi-beast issuant from the gore in a decidedly eccentric manner, force us to return this for "non-period style". (LoAR 26 Apr 87, p. 9)

This is not period style. The anomalies here are simply too great. In the first place this is not really "per chevron enhanced", but rather "chape rayonny gules... [and sable]", i.e., colour on colour. Even if it were a proper "per chevron" field division, the gules rayonny which lies almost entirely on sable would not show up well. Also, the "sun eclipsed" is really thin line heraldry being merely a band of rays linked to a sector of an annulet. Suns issuant from a complex line of division like this are a major anomaly (indeed, suns issuant from anything but the sides of the shield are exceptional in period heraldry). The whole is simply "too much". (LoAR 26 Jul 87, p. 9)

[Sable, on a pale counter-ermine, fimbriated argent, a horned human skull affronty gules] The count of anomalies here was excessive: thin line heraldry in the fimbriation, a primary charge which is low contrast and would be illegal were it not for the fimbriation, an extremely unusual tertiary charge and that in a low contrast tincture which makes it harder to identify. [Submission returned] (LoAR 31 Oct 87, p. 12)

[Quarterly argent and lozengy gules and argent, in bend two pairs of oak leaves pilewise, fructed, vert, overall a fillet cross sable] This fails by the accumulation of too many anomalies. Despite the attenuated cross, this clearly looks like quartering (the impression is the greater since the Germanic nations commonly superimpose a cross on the line of division of their grand quarters. What is more, ... it quarters the arms of Monaco in the second and third quarters! The fillet cross here is perilously close to "thin line heraldry" and ... the foliage could be mistaken by the casual observer for a laurel wreath. (LoAR 19 Dec 87, p. 18)

Rule of Thumb

The "rule of thumb" proposed by Master Baldwin in his cover letter dated 29 September, 1985, "the use of three or more non-identical charges in what would conventionally be considered a "group" may ... cause a submission to be returned as too complex", surely applies here. (LoAR 27 Sep 86, p. 11) (See also: LoAR 28 Feb 87, p. 19; LoAR 26 Jul 87, p. 9)

[A pall between crescent, a dolphin uriant, and a dolphin hauriant] The differences in the position of the dolphins make them visually different charges so that there are three different charge types about a pall, an arrangement that has been ruled illicit even for a device. (LoAR 25 Jan 87, p. 25)

Although two different charges on either side of a pile charged with a third type of charge was not specifically banned at the time three different charges on a field or three different charges on a pile were banned, this is visually three different charges on a divided field and clearly violates the spirit of the rules. (LoAR 29 Mar 87, p. 18)

Rule of Tincture

The exemption from the "Rule of Tincture" extended to a chief in some periods of mundane heraldry is not permissible in Society heraldry. Thus the gules chief on the sable field is "colour on colour". (LoAR 19 Mar 88, p. 19)

 


S

Sail

There is a long-standing precedent in Society heraldry which considered charged sails as being equivalent to arms of pretense and therefore forbidden for Society usage: "You may not charge a sail if the resulting sail conflicts with existing arms". As the sail here appear[s] identical to at least one mundane item of armory, this device must be returned. (The passage of the arms of Eisenmarche cited ... in the letter of intent is a special case ...: the arms of the Society, which the Board has specifically stated may be displayed by any group.) (LoAR 28 Dec 86, p. 13) (See also: LoAR 28 Feb 87, p. 22; LoAR 27 Aug 89, p. 20)

All of the examples of charged sails which we have been able find depictions of [in] period heraldry were displays of badges or arms claimed by the person or group who used the armory on which the sail appeared. Thus, such usage by definition creates an impression of pretense. When Master Wilhelm made the exception that groups might include a laurel wreath on a sail for group arms, he was reflecting this attitude, since the laurel wreath is an insignia to which all Society groups may lay claim. (LoAR 21 Jan 90, p. 20)

Scourge

It is not necessary to specify that this has three lashes since this is the default for this charge (Franklyn, Shield and Crest, p. 207). Note that each lash should be knotted along its length. (LoAR 28 Feb 87, p. 14)

Secondary Charge

Although there are two kinds of charges in the group, there is only one group of secondary charges here, in a standard arrangement about the cross. Therefore, technically and visually, there is only a single major point of difference (for the addition of the secondaries) from [Field, a cross]. (LoAR 26 Oct 86, p. 9)

Under the current rules, no more than a major and minor point can be derived from successive changes ... to a group of secondaries. (LoAR 25 Jan 87, p. 28) (See also: LoAR 28 Dec 86, p. 13)

Since each rose/laurel wreath collocation is essentially a single charge visually, this device is constructed on the pattern of a single primary charge and four identical secondaries. This being so, this is in conflict with [Name]. (LoAR Aug 87, p. 14)

It is clear from mundane ordinaries and period armorial treatises that cotises are indeed regarded as secondary charges, rather than merely a variation in the line of the ordinary. (LoAR 23 Apr 88, p. 22)

The cotising gules and the sable charges which lie outside the cotising are two separate groups of secondaries. (LoAR Jul 88, p. 11)

It has long been our feeling that heralds can count above six, when necessary: most have ten fingers. Seriously, period sources blazon charges up to nine or ten fairly regularly when they are primary or secondary charges (as opposed to charges "semy" or tertiaries) and this should be permitted when the numbers are not excessive. (The numbers seven and nine appear particularly frequently, possibly because of numerological considerations.) (LoAR Aug 88, p. 12)

No matter how many secondaries there are in a group and how large they are, they still count only a major point of difference. (LoAR 21 May 89, p. 18)

The addition of the tiny tertiary charge to one of the group of secondaries [is] not really enough to carry this clear. (LoAR 30 Jul 89, p. 19)

As the halberd here is clearly a separate charge on which the bear walks rather than a charge maintained by the bear, this is clear of [Name] ...: while the flames [breathed by] the bear here and the torch [maintained by the bear] there have equal weight, the halberd is an added secondary which carries this clear. (LoAR 26 Nov 89, p. 14)

This [submission] clears ... by both number and type of secondary charges (which do not demote under the new rules). (LoAR 21 Jan 90, p. 6)

There are two differences in the secondary charges: type and number. Thus the two are clear under both old and new rules. (LoAR 21 Jan 90, p. 7)

Under the new rules, this is well clear of [Name] ... since the number and type of secondary charge are counted independently with no limit. (LoAR 28 May 90, p. 7)

Seeblatt

The "seeblatt", a German charge, is described by Frankyn and Tanner (p. 298) as "a conventionalized water-plant leaf, heart-shape, pointed to base, and having a cruciform incision at the point where the stalk would normally be attached." (LoAR 28 Feb 87, p. 9)

Semy

The [semy of] lances are difficult to distinguish from ermine tails at any distance (they are virtually identical to one of the standard period forms of ermine tails). (LoAR 29 Mar 87, p. 20)

Since [the submittor] apparently wants specifically three ermine spots, it would not be appropriate to modify the lower portion of the field to semy (which is by definition sans nombre). (LoAR 24 May 87, p. 2)

While it is certainly legitimate to depict a field semy with no more than seven charges, it is clear that period heraldry acknowledged up to nine or ten charges set in a standard arrangement without considering them a semy. (LoAR 31 Oct 87, p. 2)

[Semy of sparks] The term is in French estencele and is clearly described with sources in Brault's Early Blazon, pp. 197-198 as well as in an article in Coat of Arms (1952).... It was relatively uncommon ... and, while it varied somewhat in form, most commonly was depicted as three dots painted one and two (rather like an ermine spot without the tail!). (LoAR 19 Mar 88, p. 3)

In cases where two pieces of armoury consist solely of a field semy of charges, a major point of difference may be derived from a complete change of charge tincture or a major change in the type of charge. (LoAR 23 Apr 88, p. 9)

A semy on a charge (as opposed to a field) constitutes tertiary charges. (LoAR 23 Apr 88, p. 14 and LoAR 29 May 88, p. 22)

[A bordure, semy of fountains] The fountains are banned because of the ban on charges semy which are fimbriated, proper, fur or divided tinctures (AR1.c). In this case, there actually is a problem since virtually no one who looked at the device was certain that the charges on the bordure were fountains. (LoAR 29 May 88, p. 21)

The issue is how much difference should be derived from a semy of charges added across only part of the field. Were this added to the entire field, a major point would be derived. Here [over half the field] only a minor can be derived, but the visual effect of that minor is very strong. (LoAR 30 Jul 89, p. 4)

While the letter blazoned the [charges] as "in orle", their position was not actually "orlish", but more of a very regular semy. (LoAR 22 Oct 89, p. 1)

Under both sets of rules ... "complete difference of charge" cannot function where a semy is present. (LoAR 31 Dec 89, p. 23) [Later overruled by revision of RfS X.2]

The most serious [stylistic problem] is the fact that a single secondary charge is placed on a field strewn with the same charge (in the same tincture!). Such a differentiation is not period style: the size of the strewn charges could vary widely in a period emblazon to suit the design. (LoAR 25 Feb 90, p. 19)

While significant changes to the type of charge involved in a semy can produce difference under Part X of the rules, this must be taken in the context of the underlying assumption that the charges will be immediately identifiable and distinguishable from one another. (This is implicit in the test of charges' shapes in normal depiction being significantly different: "significant" means "having significance".)... In this case, the reduction in size reduces the identifiability of the two charges to the point where they both become primarily identified as "crosses with cross bars of some sort at the ends of the arms". [Returned for conflict] (LoAR 28 May 90, p. 17)

Ship

A galley is an oar-driven ship and therefore must be drawn with oar-ports visible, even if the oars are not in action. (LoAR 30 Nov 86, p. 5)

The difference between a lymphad and a galley is not significant. (LoAR 21 Jan 90, p. 17)

Side

See, Tierce

Silvana

Under the primary listing of "Sauvain" (p. 307), Reaney lists a number of variant spellings used in period, both as given names and as a family name derived from old French "salvagin", including a citation of one Robertus Seluenus from the first third of the twelfth century. In view of this, the name must be considered eminently reasonable. (LoAR 26 Jul 87, p. 4)

Skull

The dragon's skulls were not identifiable, even at close range, although we appreciated the intent. (LoAR 25 Jan 87, p. 19)

Slot-Machine Heraldry

See also, Rule of Thumb; Tincture and Charge Limit

This [per pale field, two identical charges counterchanged, on a point pointed three annulets interlaced] skates perilously close to "slot-machine heraldry": the unity derived from the identity of the type of charge in chief and the unifying effect of the counterchange is all that saves it. (Ed. Note: Yes, that is a judgment call.) (LoAR 25 Jan 87, p. 13)

The device does fall under the heading of "slot machine heraldry" which has been banned since 1985: three different types of charge in three different tinctures on a field divided per pall inverted is almost a textbook example of the genre. (LoAR 26 Feb 89, p. 19) (See also: LoAR 22 Oct 89, p. 10; LoAR 25 Feb 90, p. 20)

[On a chief, a mullet between a crescent inverted and a crescent] The lack of symmetry as well as the lack of identifiability involved here pushed this over the edge [of acceptability]] (we certainly would not allow the collocation of charges in fess on the field where they would be larger and presumably more identifiable). (LoAR 30 Jul 89, p. 12)

[A charged pomme between two different charges in pale] Note that, while busy, this does not count as "slot machine heraldry" under the old rules since the pomme is not in the same "group" as the secondaries and it falls just inside the complexity rule of thumb of the new rules with four types of charge and four tinctures. (LoAR 26 Nov 89, p. 8)

[Two heads respectant between in pale two different secondary charges] This is not "slot machine heraldry" under the old rules because the heads are primaries and the remaining charges are secondaries. (LoAR 26 Nov 89, p. 13)

[Two different charges and a gore] While [a commenter] is correct that the gore is usually considered by definition a secondary charge since it issues from the flanks of the shield, in spirit this is "slot machine heraldry". (LoAR 31 Dec 89, p. 21)

This falls under the ban against "slot machine heraldry", i.e., the ban on more than two types of charge in the same group, which exists in both old and new rules (Tincture and Charge Limit, VIII.1.a). Were the [demi-]sun truly a primary charge with the two charges on either side of it distinctively secondary, this would not be the case. However, the position of the sun issuant from the line of division guarantees that the sun cannot have the centrality and size which would clearly remove it from the group of three objects in pale. (LoAR 21 Jan 90, p. 17)

The three different types of head[s] on the chief are by definition too complex ("slot machine heraldry"). (LoAR 25 Feb 90, p. 22)

Snowflake

The visual similarities between the fret and the snowflake ... were so strong that we felt there was infringement. (LoAR 25 Jan 87, p. 27)

[A cinquefoil within and conjoined to five cinquefoils in annulo] The possibility of confusion between this lovely, but visually confusing, design and a snowflake is very strong. (LoAR 29 Mar 87, p. 18)

[A delf and a lozenge, voided and interlaced] Given the visual similarity of the primary charge to a number of depictions of a snowflake in Society heraldry and mundane art, this appears to [conflict]. (LoAR Aug 87, p. 13)

Spear

The [semy of] lances are difficult to distinguish from ermine tails at any distance (they are virtually identical to one of the standard period forms of ermine tails). (LoAR 29 Mar 87, p. 20)

Spelling Variant

The use of "y" in Scots Gaelic spelling is not random as here. Therefore, we have substituted the normal spelling [with an "i"]. (LoAR 28 Feb 87, p. 4)

Period spellings were derived from pronunciations not pronunciations from spellings, as sometimes happens in the modern world. Since this spelling changes the pronunciation significantly, it must be assumed to be non-period lacking evidence to the contrary. Therefore, we have registered the name using the "normal" spelling. (LoAR 29 Mar 87, p. 4)

These are not really "valid" variant spellings.... They are, however, not so aberrant that we felt justified in returning the name. It should be pointed out to the [submittor] that the twentieth-century urge to have a "unique" name borne by no other person (or at least spelled alike by no other person) was not at all a period tendency: spelling variants in period occurred largely because of the dialectic differences in pronunciation, not because someone "thought it looked better that way". EOR [End of Rant] (LoAR 26 Jul 87, p. 3)

While [it] is correct ... that period orthography is often variable, Latin is much less so.... [Name] is a regular third declension noun and tends to maintain the standard endings with a fair amount of rigidity, although the other portions of the name may vary quite a bit. (LoAR Aug 87, p. 13)

Style

The style here [a quadruped] erect affronty ..., pendant from each forepaw a metal cuff and broken chain ... and in chief a crown voided between two crowns ...] is very marginal, but the crown voided has a very prominent precedent in the arms of the West. (LoAR 27 Sep 86, p. 2)

[In pale a mullet of four straight and four wavy rays and a bird statant to sinister, wings addorsed and inverted, proper between two flaunches, each charged with a Maltese cross, fitched at the foot] This device runs perilously close to the limit on anomalies and is decidedly poor style. (LoAR 27 Sep 86, p. 3) [Device was registered]

[A monster couchant, wings debruising a rainbow] Note: the awkwardness of the blazon reflects the "modern" style of the device. This strains at the limits which our collective sensibilities have established for period style. (LoAR 27 Sep 86, pp. 4-5)

The device was judged to be excessively complex [charged primary, secondary in base, and embattled bordure] and poor style to a degree which should not be accepted for group arms which precedent indicates "should set a good example". (LoAR 27 Sep 86, p. 13)

[Per saltire metal and color, a charge counterchanged charged with another of a third tincture] This is a classic instance of the "op art style" referred to in X3..... So striking an example of "modern" heraldry is this that the consensus of the meeting was that it must be returned. (LoAR 26 Oct 86, p. 11)

Note that the unicorn's head cabossed is rather poor style; in this posture the distinguishing features of the unicorn's head are nearly unidentifiable. (LoAR 26 Oct 86, p. 7)

[Shire of One Thousand Eyes (in Idaho)] Almost without exception the commenting heralds felt this name was non-period in style. However, it is the sort of name which is not at all uncommon in the fantastic literature, period and modern, which also forms a background to our Society and therefore seems legitimate.... (LoAR 28 Dec 86, p. 5)

[A pithon erect to sinister, one wing inverted and the other elevated] There are ... distinct problems with this badge.... It is demonstrably non-period style and definitely a non-standard pithon. (LoAR 28 Dec 86, p. 12)

Two types of sword should not be united in a single visual whole here: it is very poor style and has been grounds for return in the past. (LoAR 28 Dec 86, p. 15)

The interlacing of the flaunches by the [charge] is not period style and is, in and of itself, too great an anomaly to allow. (LoAR 28 Dec 86, p. 14)

This is overly complex for period style, involving as it does five tinctures and four different types of charge. If would add a considerable amount of unity to the design if the [major charges] were both of the same tincture. (LoAR 28 Dec 86, p. 16)

There was a general consensus that the two [identical charges] conjoined [at their bases on the per fess line of division] were neither period style nor identifiable, even at close range. Three [charges] counterchanged would be far better heraldry. (LoAR 28 Dec 86, p. 16)

The use of three different tertiaries on each one of three identical charges is not period style: this looks like a collection of badges strewn on a field. (LoAR 28 Dec 86, p. 19)

Note that this is extremely poor style ..., combining as it does two visually anomalous components (i.e., the arm in armour and the [Charge maintaining it paly of Or and gules]) in disconnected tinctures. It is technically legal, but visually confusing. (LoAR 25 Jan 87, p. 2)

It is not good style to charge the chape or chausse portion of a field. However, since there is ample Society precedence for the practice, I feel compelled to accept it in this case. (LoAR 25 Jan 87, p. 9)

The use of ermine tails inverted in a semy is not period style. (LoAR 25 Jan 87, p. 16)

[A cross nowed and fleury] The badge [is not] really period in style. (LoAR 25 Jan 87, p. 17)

[Sword entwined with a rose vine proper, on a party two-color field] This is not period style and has some serious problems with contrast. (LoAR 25 Jan 87, p. 18)

This device totters on the edge of acceptability..., with the beast-monster as well as the trees being proper. With the added anomaly of the minuscule arm issuant from base supporting the sword which is not really bendwise sinister, this is not really period style. (LoAR 25 Jan 87, p. 20)

[Three triangles in fess, the center one inverted and doubled in size, within a tressure fleury] This is distinctly non-period style. The tressure is drawn in a non-standard manner and the central motif, the three triangles, depend for their arrangement on a differentiation in size that is not at all medieval: charges in period generally expanded to fill the available space. The use of triangles as a primary motif is an anomaly, although one [has been] permitted in the past. Taken together with the non-standard arrangement, the modern size differentiation of the primary charges and the unusual rendition of the tressure, it is just too much. (LoAR 25 Jan 87, p. 25)

[Tierced per fess of three tinctures, two identical charges and a third charge, all counterchanged] This is not period style. Even were there only two tinctures involved, the visual complexity (these appear to be two different types of charge divided per fess and overlying a fess) would make the effect confusing. This would be far better if the one of the charges were placed on the fess surrounded by three of the other charge. (LoAR 25 Jan 87, p. 26)

Please ... draw the ermine tails properly: the counter-ermine portion of the field had a distinct resemblance to a carbon-ring schematic! (LoAR 28 Feb 87, p. 1)

Please ... draw the [per bend sinister] field division properly issuant from the sinister chief corner of the shield and not ... draw the [charge] in trian aspect as it appeared on the emblazon. (LoAR 28 Feb 87, p. 11)

The use of the nested orles in different tinctures is an anomaly for period heraldic style. (LoAR 28 Feb 87, p. 19)

We are still of the opinion that the use of gyronny from the edge on charges is extremely poor style. (LoAR 29 Mar 87, p. 3)

The emblazon cannot really be reconstructed from the blazon given: the style is so far from period style that it cannot be expressed in the traditional vocabulary. (LoAR 29 Mar 87, p. 13)

It might be suggested to the submittor that the style and posture of the human figure [courant] is not really period. (LoAR 29 Mar 87, p. 15)

The collocation of the chief triangular and the [debruising] rainbow is definitely not period style and the device as a whole is strongly reminiscent of modern "decal" design. (LoAR 29 Mar 87, p. 16)

There was general agreement that this was not period heraldic style, being unbalanced and entirely too "naturalistic". (LoAR 29 Mar 87, p. 22)

[Per pale azure and argent, a fess and overall a roundel, all counterchanged] This submission provided an excellent example of the problem "modern" counterchange designs present when determining difference. In period, it would have been a definite anomaly for a charge overall to share the charges of the field and the primary charge in a counterchange relationship, but counterchange of overall charges, when used in moderation, has become relatively accepted in the Society. (LoAR 26 Apr 87, pp. 7-8)

The use of the late and unusual charge of the yale..., the chief dove-tailed and the use of the gore are all "allowable anomalies" that have been permitted for Society use. However, the use of all three together, with the added anomaly of the demi-beast issuant from the gore in a decidedly eccentric manner, force us to return this for "non-period style". (LoAR 26 Apr 87, p. 9)

The "side" ... is not actually illegal but it is certainly poor style. (LoAR 26 Apr 87, p. 12)

[A heart voided between four mullets in cross and four hearts in saltire] This pushes at the limits of acceptable style. If the single tincture of the charges did not tie the whole together so well, it would probably slip over the edge. (LoAR 24 May 87, p. 3)

This would have a much less "modern" appearance if the head were not issuant from base. (LoAR 24 May 87, p. 10)

The wave crest has, by consensus of the College, been barred from general use in Society heraldry since 1983. Given the strong feeling on the part of the commentors that this usage is not acceptable style and the lack of indication of period usage in the citation from Woodward..., there seems no reason to change this precedent. (LoAR 14 Jun 87, p. 6)

The blazon is as clumsy as it is because this is not really period style, although it is ... Society heraldry. (LoAR 26 Jul 87, p. 7)

This is not period style. The anomalies here are simply too great. In the first place this is not really "per chevron enhanced", but rather "chape rayonny gules... [and sable]", i.e., colour on colour. Even if it were a proper "per chevron" field division, the gules rayonny which lies almost entirely on sable would not show up well. Also, the "sun eclipsed" is really thin line heraldry being merely a band of rays linked to a sector of an annulet. Suns issuant from a complex line of division like this are a major anomaly (indeed, suns issuant from anything but the sides of the shield are exceptional in period heraldry). The whole is simply "too much". (LoAR 26 Jul 87, p. 9)

The [stag's] attire issuant from the line of division is very poor style. (LoAR Aug 87, p. 11)

[Per fess indented of three points azure and argent, issuant from the line of division a sun Or, eclipsed gules] This badge was returned ... for non-period style and this judgement was appealed ("how is a standard heraldic charge issuant from a standard partition line considered to be NPS?"). There are several aspects of the submitted badge, as emblazoned (which is what we must judge by), which are non-period in style.... This is a "landscape' design, which the rules specifically indicate is non-period and discouraged. Additionally, the sun as depicted is not a period (or modern) heraldic sun, eclipsed or otherwise: it is essentially a torteau, multiply rayed Or. Moreover, it is not placed centrally on the shield which half of the charge issuant from the line of division, as the blazon implies: if you extend the line of the circle and its rays, they fall well off the periphery of the field. It would not be possible to properly center and redraw the sun because the whole design relies on the outer edge of the sun gules intersecting with the tops of the outer indentations in such a way that the rays lie wholly on the azure and the gules lies totally above the argent portion of the field, thus narrowly avoiding breaking tincture by a very modern design. (LoAR Aug 87, pp. 11-12)

[A chevron, surmounted by three piles in point counterchanged, the central one charged] There was a general feeling in the College that this was non-period in style, being excessively "op-artish" in appearance. It is also overly complex.... "The field is the first layer. The chevron is the second. The piles are the third, and so the [tertiary] is the fourth layer, which is not allowed." (LoAR Aug 87, p. 12)

[Crusilly conjoined, voided in each arm of a delf] This [is] not period style.... The semy of conjoined elements is not really period and it is almost impossible to distinguish the identity of the rather unusual charge scattered on the field. (LoAR 27 Sep 87, p. 10)

The bird "perched" on the line of division is not period style so far as can be determined. (LoAR 27 Sep 87, p. 13)

[Per pale, chape ploye, a charge and the chape charged] This device is rather poor style and is quite confusing visually. (LoAR 31 Oct 87, p. 9)

[Gyronny of ten per pale, a mullet throughout counterchanged, overall an eagle sable] The counterchanged mullet, placed on the already complex field and overlaid almost completely by the bird, visually appeared to be merely a variant of a field division (one member of the Laurel staff referred to it as a "field kaleidoscopy"!). (LoAR 31 Oct 87, p. 12)

[A bend coloured as a natural rainbow] This is a clear case of non-period style. Such rainbow tinctured charges as this have been banned from Society use for some years. (LoAR 28 Nov 87, p. 7)

The use of the charge overall here, overlying a base does appear to be non-period style, the more so since the ford is not drawn properly but rather as a "base wavy azure charged with four barrulets wavy argent." (LoAR 28 Nov 87, p. 10)

[Argent, a saltire vert between a pile and a pile inverted sable] The blazon does not really correctly describe the device as the sable is not really pile-shaped. The nearest blazon probably is "Per saltire sable and argent, a saltire vert, fimbriated argent...." However, this is not permissible since much of the "fimbriation" will fade into the argent portion of the field. This is not period style. [Submission returned] (LoAR 28 Nov 87, p. 11)

This is not period style since there would be no space for the [charge] beneath a pile properly drawn. (LoAR 28 Nov 87, p. 11)

[A woman courant, wearing a winged helm, drawn in a "1920's representation" style] This submission is still not very period in style, but the consensus of the College was that the Law of Toyota should apply ("you asked for it, you've got it"). The [submittor] should be asked to draw the device in a more period manner. (LoAR 19 Dec 87, p. 1)

The foreparts of the lion are dismembered and the hindparts are not, in a distinctly non-period manner.... The argent banding of the saltire criss-crosses at the centre of the saltire so that the saltire is distinctly not filled or voided as the original blazon has it. In fact, what you appear to have is "Sable, a saltire gules surmounted by another parted and fretted argent, overall...". This is not period style and forms excessive layering. (LoAR 19 Dec 87, p. 18)

This is just not period style. The unbalanced effect of the gore is only exaggerated by the visually complex arrangement of moon and stars scrunched into dexter chief. (LoAR 21 Feb 88, p. 14)

[A heart between three identical charges in chief and a different charge in base, itself charged with another heart] This submission pushes hard at the limits of period style: ... [it] would be much improved if the heart were metallic with no superimposed colour and all the secondary charges were of one type. (LoAR 19 Mar 88, p. 5)

[... in base and surmounting the chevron a mullet ...] This device is not period style: the mullet overlapping the entire bottom half of the shield, including the ordinary is eccentric to say the least. (LoAR 23 Apr 88, p. 13)

The use of the demi-annulet of chain to link two disparate charges across a divided field is not period style. (LoAR 23 Apr 88, p. 16)

[A lozenge throughout fimbriated, charged with, among others, a gout fimbriated] The excessive use of fimbriation [is] a non-period feature of the device. (LoAR 23 Apr 88, p. 16)

[A fess of lozenges conjoined, alternately argent and Or] The alternate colouration of the lozenges in fess, as well as their exceeding small size, are not period style. (LoAR 23 Apr 88, p. 18)

[Crusilly conjoined countervoided] [The submittor] has demonstrated that the design element indeed existed in period, but not that it is appropriate for period heraldry. Note that the use of period design elements in Society heraldry is not mandated but rather allowed on a case-by-case basis. For such usages to be accepted, they must have a single identifiable form and must be compatible with period heraldic style.... No one single design could be derived from any blazon we could concoct to represent this. (LoAR 23 Apr 88, p. 18)

Complex counterchanging involving three colours is not period style. (LoAR 29 May 88, p. 25)

The [charge] which surmounts both the field and the [ordinary] and pierces a tertiary charge on the [ordinary] is not period style. (LoAR Jun 88, p. 15)

[Per bend sinister wavy, on a bend sinister wavy counterchanged a scarpe wavy counterchanged] The visually confusing bend/bendlet counterchanged effect of the device also caused stylistic twitches: at first and even second glance it is difficult to determine precisely what is going on along the line of division. (LoAR Jun 88, p. 16)

Even if the [ordinary] had been a metal and not fimbriated, it would have been a distinct anomaly to have two beasts of different types placed in such a way as to partially surmount it. As it is, the effect is just too busy.

Having the two beasties maintaining different objects is poor style. (LoAR Jul 88, p. 4)

The combination of the voided heart used as a frame and the unusual chief [doubly enarched] reflecting the upper portion of the heart bordered on non-period style. [Device registered] (LoAR Jul 88, p. 6)

[On a bend sinister, a roundel, overall four swords in cross counterchanged] The problem with period style ... is derived from the counterchanged charges overlapping the bend in a non-period manner about a central charge which lies entirely on the bend. It is quite unusual in period to have more than one charge "overall" and when there are multiple charges they are not counterchanged in this manner. (LoAR Jul 88, p. 20)

This would be much better style if the panthers were drawn as separate entities (dropping the entwining of the tails) and the [chevronelly] field were draw more evenly divided of [its two] tinctures. [Submission registered] (LoAR Aug 88, p. 8)

Although the submittor has provided some documentation for the enarched chief and base as separate elements, there is some doubt whether a base of this sort is period and certainly the "cat's eye" effect is distinctly modern. (LoAR Aug 88, p. 17)

The design is unbalanced in the extreme, mostly due to the attempt to counterfeit the effect of a constellation (these are forbidden for Society heraldry). (LoAR Aug 88, p. 22)

[Gyronny Or and chequy azure and argent, a spider tergiant palewise sable and in chief a faceted gem fesswise between two others in chevron gules] Most of the commenters felt that this pushed the limits of acceptable style to near the breaking point, but ultimately we decided that this fell short of unacceptability. In fact, apart from the peculiar positioning of the gems, this is a rather simple device (or would be if the field were a bit quieter). (LoAR 18 Sep 88, p. 10)

After much effort, no one could find any definite period exemplars of alternating charges on a gyronny in a "pinwheel" effect. [Device returned] (LoAR 18 Sep 88, p. 14)

Placing charges overall on top of flaunches or gussets [or a gore] is not period style. (LoAR 18 Sep 88, p. 15)

[A compass star, elongated to sinister and to base, the elongated rays surmounted by the upper and dexter elongated rays of a compass star, the greater points elongated in cross] The device is not period style, combining as it does the unusual perversion of the compass star with an extraordinarily unbalanced design. (LoAR 18 Sep 88, p. 18)

It was the consensus of commentary in the College that this design could not be considered period style: not only does it have the chief overlie the primary charge (and a tierce is a charge, not a field division), but has another charge overall superimposed upon both the tierce and the chief, which is not permitted. (LoAR 18 Sep 88, p. 18)

This device seemed to display too many anomalies to be considered consonant with period style: charging a chape or vetû is extremely bad practice in itself and limiting the charges to the upper portion of the shield disturbs the balance of the device, the trivet is such that it cannot be clearly identified without depicting it in trian aspect and the flaming of only the legs and upper portion of the outer edge of the trivet is peculiar to say the least. (LoAR 30 Oct 88, p. 14)

[A roundel surmounted by four talons in cross] This badge cannot really be considered period style. It is notable that virtually nobody in the College could determine what the charges were surmounting the [roundel] without looking at the blazon (several heralds in different kingdoms blazoned them first as four ice cream cones in cross!).... Comment also centered on the fact that this submission only makes sense if you imagine the (invisible) four-toed lion's jambe behind the [roundel], making it by definition in trian aspect. (LoAR 30 Oct 88, p. 17)

No one could document a field divided of four colours per saltire and it does not appear to be period practice. (LoAR 27 Nov 88, p. 17)

The cumulative anomalies here take this device beyond period style. The beast is depicted in trian aspect and issuant from the line of division, with the tail peeping out separately from the "curtain". The bezants it is maintaining fade into its wings almost entirely and the overall posture is not heraldic. In sum, the general effect is of a juggling dragon puppet at a Punch and Judy show (Ollie?). (LoAR 27 Nov 88, p. 24)

[Two chevronels fretted with a chevron inverted, each charged with a chevronel] The complexity added by the golden lines on the [sable] chevronels, only marginally wider than a (non-blazonable) delineation, particularly when the chevronels are fretted in this non-standard manner takes this beyond period style. The submittor is strongly urged to drop the metal from the chevronels and/or drop the non-heraldic fretting of the ordinaries. (LoAR 27 Nov 88, p. 25)

This is just not period style: not only is the sun issuant from the complex line of division on the chief a solecism, this is excessively "landscapey". (LoAR 27 Nov 88, p. 26)

The use of the two different mullet variations on the chief is very poor style. (LoAR 24 Dec 88, p. 1)

[A beast's head maintaining in its mouth a rosebud, in sinister chief a charge] This is not particularly good style, but it is legal, despite the fiddling rosebud proper and the lack of balance produced by the [secondary charge]. (LoAR 24 Dec 88, p. 7)

This charged tierce is very poor style. (LoAR 24 Dec 88, p. 10)

This [in fess] arrangement of [three different] charges is almost random and certain unbalanced, given the [per bend sinister] field division. (LoAR 24 Dec 88, p. 12)

[Per bend, to dexter in fess three mullets of four points, a base] This design, taken in its entirety, [is] excessively modern. (LoAR 24 Dec 88, p. 13)

[Per pall of three colors, a pall of chain between two griffins combattant and a tower] The cumulative anomalies in this [submission] amounted to non-period style: three low-contrast tinctures in the field, a pall of chain which is nearly unidentifiable and was felt by many to be tantamount to "thin line heraldry" and the use of the gryphons combattant whose differences of position require the processing of all three charges around the chain as different "items". (LoAR 15 Jan 89, p. 11)

The truncated [monster] issuant from the line of division of the chief is not really period style. (LoAR 26 Feb 89, p. 16)

[Three pallets and three barrulets fretted in sinister base, in dexter chief in pale three roses in chevron and a goblet] This device is not period style. The overall arrangement of the charges is extremely unbalanced, with the focus of the primary charge abased to the sinister base and the remaining charges consequently diminished so in size as to appear like an eccentric canton of augmentation. (LoAR 26 Feb 89, pp. 18-19)

[A pale, overall an orle of leaves counterchanged] The placement of the orle of leaves [is] visually confusing and poor style. (LoAR 26 Feb 89, p. 19)

This device had been returned by [kingdom] on the grounds that the [charge] beneath the pile was not period style and contravened previous Laurel rulings. This was appealed to Laurel. With near unanimity the College of Arms supported [the principal herald's] original return. (LoAR 26 Feb 89 p. 19)

The best period style [heraldry] clearly was static and balanced. (LoAR 26 Feb 89, p. 20)

The [horned skull] helm [is] rather poor style, but the other problems had been ameliorated to the point where the device as a whole [is] acceptable. (LoAR 26 Mar 89, p. 4)

[A cross enhanced to chief and to dexter between a charge fesswise and a charge palewise] Although this cross has been used in modern heraldry, we were unable to find any use of the extremely unbalanced design in period heraldry. This is just not "period style". (LoAR 26 Mar 89, p. 19)

[In bend a compass star between two mullets of four points, a charged base] There was a considerable amount of feeling that this was stylistically marginal. [Device registered] (LoAR 30 Apr 89, p. 1)

[A stag salient through a heart voided] We could not consider this compatible with the standards of period style which the College has in the past presented to the Society.... Were [the voiding of the heart] the only anomaly, the issue of complexity and style would be much dicier. However, joined to the voided heart is the design which depends on the beast "doing a circus stunt" ..., i.e., jumping through the heart. This posture inevitably obscures some of the identifying features of both the stag and the heart, since the head and antlers of the stag overlie the indentation of the heart to chief. Thus the shape of the upper portion of the heart is obscured and, since the [metal] antlers lie largely along the [metal] curve of the heart, so are the identifying antlers. (LoAR 30 Apr 89, p. 18)

[Per pall of three colors, a charged roundel between two axes, hafts embowed outwards] The combinations of anomalous elements render this non-period style.... The three-coloured per pall division and the "bent" axes which are vital to the suggested design are enough to justify the return of the device. (LoAR 30 Apr 89, p. 20)

[An owl perched on a branch and a cat's paw, appaumy and issuant from base] The device [is] of extremely dubious style, but legal. (LoAR 21 May 89, p. 1)

[A tree, its roots encircling a heart] The device is extremely poor style. [Device registered] (LoAR 21 May 89, p. 10)

[Per bend, a charged bend in base] The charged bend in base is very poor style. [Device registered] (LoAR 21 May 89, p. 11)

[A sword bendwise piercing a garden rose, in sinister chief a cross fimbriated, all within a bordure] There was a general feeling that this submission skated on the far side of period style: the unbalanced arrangement of the charges, the manner in which the low contrast garden rose was pierced by the sword, rendering it even more unidentifiable, and most of all the fimbriation of the small, clearly secondary cross. [The cross] is visually peripheral and, taken with the other anomalies, pushes this submission over the edge of acceptable style. (LoAR 21 May 89, p. 15)

[A unicorn's head and a pegasus' head] The conjoining of two such similar charges ... in a mirror image arrangement reinforced by the counterchanging reduced the identifiability of each and was not period style. (LoAR 21 May 89, p. 18)

[Per bend sinister, a point dexter and a gore sinister counterchanged, overall a (charge)] This is just not period style. The use of the unusual single dexter point and the gore produces an unbalanced effect in the underlying charges and indeed visually this appears more like "[Tincture], a bend sinister enhanced and a sinister gore [tincture], etc." (LoAR 21 May 89, p. 24)

The device [is] just not period style. The complex central charge, with its unusual variant of a standard charge ..., the addition of the [birds] and the mount and the gores add an unacceptable degree of complexity in type and tincture of charge. (LoAR 18 Jun 89, p. 13)

[Two monsters, bodies tergiant in annulo, outer sings displayed, necks and tails crossed, heads respectant] The [monsters] are both in a truly non-heraldic posture and in trian aspect. This is not period style. (LoAR 30 Jul 89, p. 14)

[On a chief, a charge bendwise sinister] There was considerable feeling in the College that the unusual position of the charge on the chief was not period style. After much consideration, we have decided that it is eccentric and not advisable, but not grounds in and of itself for the return of the device. LoAR 27 Aug 89, p. 12)

[An oak tree and a fir tree inverted conjoined at the trunk] The conjoining of two different types of tree, taken together with the inversion of the pine tree, [is] too far outside period style. (LoAR 27 Aug 89, p. 20)

[On a chief a plate between a decrescent and an increscent] The three tertiaries are thematically unified, but the "phases of the moon" are not really period style. (LoAR 27 Aug 89, p. 22)

[Per chevron, a chevron enflamed between a monster dormant to sinister and a sword proper between two birds respectant] There were just too many anomalies in this device for us to consider it period style. The chevron is neither a standard rayonny nor the Society-legal "ordinary enflamed" that has been seen in the case of bordures, etc. previously. The beast in chief is neither a true couchant nor dormant, but rather more of a non-heraldic "stalkant, head to base". Moreover, the three tiny charges of two types and two tinctures packed into the compartment below the chevron are very difficult to identify accurately. (LoAR 27 Aug 89, p. 23)

There was a considerable consensus in the College that the hexapodal [six-legged] weasels were not consonant with period style. (LoAR 27 Aug 89, p. 24)

[On a pale four mullets, one, one and two] The "constellation" on the pale [is] not period style. (LoAR 27 Aug 89, p. 26)

While the use of the two non-identical heads here is poor style, it is legal since the unicorn's head and the dragon's head are recognised heraldic charges and not merely variants of the same thing (e.g., a sword and a dagger). (LoAR 30 Sep 89, p. 2)

[In bend enarched to base three charges, in sinister chief a monster] There was virtually unanimous agreement in the College that the almost random arrangement of the [charges] and monster were not heraldic and not period style. (LoAR 30 Sep 89, p. 12)

[Per pale, a base, overall a roundel] The emblazon shows the [roundel] overlying the base which is not period style, making this submission look as if it has some weird tripartite field division. (LoAR 30 Sep 89, p. 15)

[A hand issuant bendwise from chief and a hand issuant bendwise sinister from base, to dexter a charge] There was a strong feeling among the commentors that this design, with its intense impression of movement, its use of visually non-identical charges, etc. was not period style. (LoAR 30 Sep 89, p. 16)

[Three pallets and three barrulets fretted in sinister base] While this resubmission laudably simplifies the device, it does not resolve the problem with the off-center "cross" which produces a distinctly non-period dynamically unbalanced design. (LoAR 22 Oct 89, p. 10)

The device must be returned because it uses the line of division "wavy crested" which has specifically been ruled to be modern and not compatible with Society style (as of August, 1980). (LoAR 26 Nov 89, p. 33)

[A fret couped within and conjoined to a heart voided] After much consideration we were compelled to the opinion that the charge ... is just not clearly identifiable enough to be considered period style. (LoAR 26 Nov 89, p. 33)

No documentation was provided to indicate that an animate object could be transfixed by an ordinary in this manner in period style. Taken together with the unusual horned [beast], drawn in trian aspect, as is almost required by the design, this just does not seem to be a period design. (LoAR 26 Nov 89, p. 34)

Visually it does look like a quilt design, as noted by several commenters. While this is not in and of itself a problem, the fact that the cross must not only be throughout but of a precise size to reproduce the design is. Not only can we not guarantee its accurate reproduction by an heraldic artist, but such size-dependent designs are not period style. (LoAR 26 Nov 89, p. 36)

The four [charges] in two tinctures, three heads and whole [beast], [are] just too complex for period style even without the anomaly of the heads holding the [charges] in their mouths.... The four tinctures with three types of charge (four, if you categorize secondary and tertiary charges of the same type as visually different in weight) are just too much. (LoAR 26 Nov 89, p. 40)

It would be better style by far if there were not two different types of charge in two different tinctures on the pile. (LoAR 31 Dec 89, p. 15)

[On a triangle a pair of batwings, all within a bordure of flames] The entire collection of charges comes perilously close to what one commentor called "biker heraldry". (LoAR 31 Dec 89, p. 21)

The [beast] is touching the gore in such a manner as to make it clear the intended effect is to have the [beast] "lift the golden curtain" to reveal the [charge] behind. ‘Tis not a period heraldic design. (LoAR 31 Dec 89, p. 25)

[Quarterly, five hearts conjoined in annulo, bases to center, voided] All in all, this is not period style.... There is no doubt that the "voided heart" effect is too complex, especially when the hearts are conjoined in this unusual manner to form a pseudo-rose.... Even if you try and call it a single rose, there is substantial agreement in the College that the petals of a rose should not be voided, whether or not so blazoned. (LoAR 21 Jan 90, p. 19)

[On a pale surmounted by a bend embattled on the upper edge counterchanged, a beast's head and an anvil] The overall design [is] just too complex and unbalanced for period style. The difficulties which were encountered ... in creating a blazon which would guarantee that the "staircase" would never overlie the charges on the pale was indicative of the problem. The counterchanging and the diminished size of the bend required by the [beast's] head above it on the pale decreased the immediate recognizability of the bend. Additionally, while the number of layers involved here can be reduced to three by reblazoning, the overall effects is visually complex and overly confusing, creating an effect of motion as the eye follows the "staircase" from top to bottom rather than processing the charges in a normal static manner. (LoAR 21 Jan 90, pp. 20-21)

The bordure of flame does not even stand as the only anomaly, but is accompanied by the three swords proper with enflamed blades in an unusual position.... The general effect is not period style under either the old rules or the new. (LoAR 25 Feb 90, p. 18)

The most serious [stylistic problem] is the fact that a single secondary charge is placed on a field strewn with the same charge (in the same tincture!). Such a differentiation is not period style: the size of the strewn charges could vary widely in a period emblazon to suit the design. (LoAR 25 Feb 90, p. 19)

The two types of branches [oak and pine] crossed in the base of the device are a solecism akin to crossing a sword and dagger in saltire. (LoAR 25 Feb 90, p. 21)

Note that this is overall a very modern design, requiring the depiction of the mullet [on] the dovetailed saltire in a specific manner to work: period heraldry did not measure thus in millimeters! (LoAR 25 Feb 90, p. 22)

The use of two types of fleurs-de-lys in the same group was stylistically confusing, diminished by the identifiability of the aberrant fleurs and was just not period style. (LoAR 25 Feb 90, p. 22)

While it is something of an anomaly to have the same essential charge used both as primary and secondary charge, this is not unknown in period heraldry, particularly with charges like crosses. (LoAR 31 Mar 90, p. 2)

This is just too busy: there are three types of charges (with two in a single group) and six tinctures (with three in a single group). (LoAR 31 Mar 90, p. 14)

[Three flames of fire between two wings conjoined, displayed and inverted] The flames are so reduced in size by the design that they are virtually unidentifiable. Moreover, there is really no way to guarantee that this design will be drawn in this particular manner, even through a long and precise blazon. These two facts together clearly point to a design that is not period style. (LoAR 31 Mar 90, p. 16)

The current state of heraldic research casts serious doubt on the period style of the sun issuant from the line of division of the chief, no matter how frequently this occurred in Victorian (or early Society) heraldry. (LoAR 17 Jun 90, p. 15)

The voiding/fimbriation of the mullet unacceptably diminished its identifiability and, taken with its peripheral position, the lack of unity in the design where three different types of charges were placed in an "in cross" arrangement, etc., the whole was just not period style. (LoAR 17 Jun 90, p. 15)

The counterchanging of the [overall charge] across the base is not period style. (LoAR 17 Jun 90, p. 17)

Sun

Only a minor point of difference can be derived from the eclipsing of the sun, whether you consider it as using a different tincture for part of a charge (analogous to using Or for the wings of an argent pegasus) or a permutation of the main charge (it is analogous to the example of the charge pierced vs. unpierced). (LoAR 27 Sep 86, p. 9)

The "sun eclipsed" is really thin line heraldry being merely a band of rays linked to a sector of an annulet. Suns issuant from a complex line of division like this are a major anomaly (indeed, suns issuant from anything but the sides of the shield are exception in period heraldry). (LoAR 26 Jul 87, p. 9)

The current state of heraldic research casts serious doubt on the period style of the sun issuant from the line of division of the chief, no matter how frequently this occurred in Victorian (or early Society) heraldry. (LoAR 17 Jun 90, p. 15)

The [demi-]sun issuant from the line of division of the chief is essentially an anomaly. (LoAR 17 Jun 90, p. 18)

Sunburst

The question of whether the sunburst should be a reserved charge is a knotty one. There is no doubt that it was used as a royal badge by Edward III and Henry VII. However, as was clear from the sources cited ... (notably Pinches, The Royal Heraldry of England, p. 54) as well as those sources that I had access to, the rays in the royal badge were always Or rather than argent or sable as here. (Hence the theory that the badge is a canting reference to Edward's birthplace of Windsor, i.e., that the rays are not rays of the sun but "Winds Or".) The Society tradition has to be conservative in adding to the list of reserved charges and I am loathe to depart from that tradition. Since the preponderance of evidence is that only the sunburst with golden rays was used as a royal badge, no other usage should be restricted in the Society.

PRECEDENT: Since they seem to have been used exclusively as royal badges, sunbursts with rays Or may not be used in Society heraldry. Sunbursts of other colours may be used freely. (LoAR 27 Sep 86, p. 6)

Sword

Even amongst those weapons mavens who were aware that a katar is a peculiarly Indian two-handled dagger, there was a general consensus that the charge was not identifiable. (LoAR 28 Dec 86, p. 14)

A dagger is a sword and a sword is, generally speaking, a sword from the point of view of difference. (LoAR 28 Dec 86, p. 14) (See also: LoAR 28 Dec 86, p. 17)

Two types of sword should not be united in a single visual whole here: it is very poor style and has been ground for return in the past. (LoAR 28 Dec 86, p. 15)

After much consideration (and several examinations of the emblazon), there seemed to be insufficient contrast between the argent blade of the sword and the Or flames that surround it. Both the blade and the flames are major design elements and, unfortunately, the argent fades into the Or to such an extent that the sword appears to be "bladed of flames Or: making the flames proper would resolve the problem. (LoAR 26 Apr 87, p. 11)

[In saltire two poignards surmounted by a rapier] The difference between the types of bladed weapon [is] a distinction rather than a difference and a distinction that would not have been made normally in period heraldry. (LoAR 23 Apr 88, p. 13)

[A sword inverted between in fess two daggers] Those who commented on the non-period usage of two types of almost but not quite identical charges are correct: essentially you have daggers and swords (which do not differ in type) used in the same grouping for effect. This effect is even more striking since mundane heraldry frequently arranges three swords in fess or in pale with the center sword going in one direction and the outside swords in another. (LoAR 21 Jan 90, p. 21)

The difference between swords and swords inverted is not that great visually when there is a mixed group. (LoAR 21 Jan 90, p. 21)

Symbols

The ichthys is an abstract symbol and as such are banned from Society devices.... If this were a fish, the symbolism would not at all be excessive.... (LoAR 30 Nov 86, p. 14)

While abstract symbols may be used in badges, AR10c specifically states that "a badge shall not consist solely of one abstract symbol". Any kanji character must be considered an "abstract symbol" in the sense that the Rules intend. (LoAR 26 Apr 87, p. 9)

This is an abstraction of the "sign of Tanit", one which actually appears to have been made in ancient formal and informal graffiti. The overwhelming association of Tanit (or Tanith) both in Greek and Roman sources is with the sacrifice of children. This association is frequently the one single thing that the layman knows about Carthaginian religion.... This is, moreover, not merely malicious propaganda on the part of the Romans: it is supported by the archaeological evidence. (LoAR Aug 87, pp. 12-13)


T

Tertiary Charge

Since the tertiary charge placed on the primary charge is identical with [Name, whose primary charge differed by shape], complete difference of charge should not technically apply and there is a clear visual [similarity]. (LoAR 27 Sep 86, p. 10)

Many commenters noted a potential conflict.... This is the perfect example of a case where the allowance of a full major point of difference for tertiaries made in DR10 should come into play. In both cases the field ... [and] the tincture of the ordinary ... are identical. There is a clear major for the indenting of the [ordinary] here. A major point of difference can be allowed for the tertiaries not only because the differences between the tertiaries are not only striking in degree [type, number (with the difference in position this causes), and tincture] but also because the tertiaries lie at the visual center of the field of the shield with virtually no visual distractions on the periphery. The same changes places on a secondary charge (for example, a chief) would not attract the eye with nearly the same force. (LoAR 28 Dec 86, p. 7)

The interlacing of the flaunches by the [charge] is not period style and is, in and of itself, too great an anomaly to allow. If [the piercing charge] is considered mainly a tertiary charge, the device is insufficiently differenced [from another device with the same field and flaunch tinctures]. (LoAR 28 Dec 86, p. 14)

Note that DR10 says "at most" a major point may be derived from tertiaries. In such a case as this, where there are prominent secondaries, we should not even consider making that allowance unless there are three clear differences in the secondaries: since the primary tincture of both sets of tertiaries is [the same], there are only two: type and number. (LoAR 28 Dec 86, p. 17) (See also: LoAR 29 Mar 87, p. 24; 23 Apr 88, p. 22)

The use of three different tertiaries on each one of three identical charges is not period style: this looks like a collection of badges strewn on a field. (LoAR 28 Dec 86, p. 19)

[Barry of six, in pale on each trait a goutte] while a strict interpretation of the definitions for charges would imply that the gouttes here should be counted as charges, the small size of each charge diminishes the visual impact of each one. There is no doubt that visually they have only the weight of tertiary charges. (LoAR 25 Jan 87, p. 28)

This would seem precisely the case that intended in DR10, which in some cases allows two clear changes to tertiaries on a device consisting solely of a field and a charged ordinary to create a full point of difference. Thus, it is clear of the various mundane coats of "Argent, on a pale gules one X Or.", where X is a charge which is visually distinct from [the one here]. (LoAR Aug 87, p. 8)

Note that the logical distinction between granting full difference for three changes to a group of minors (i.e., a situation where there is functionally complete visual difference of tertiaries) is based on the perception of difference reflected in period cadency. A complete change of type of tertiary or of tincture of tertiary, etc. would be sufficient to create secondary cadency in many heraldic jurisdictions (though admittedly not in all). Changing both could be used to define tertiary cadency (i.e., the second son might use a chief charged with three fleurs-de-lys gules while his son used three fleurs-de-lys azure). (LoAR 27 Sep 87, p. 6)

A semy on a charge (as opposed to a field) constitutes tertiary charges. (LoAR 23 Apr 88, p. 14)

Charges maintained by a beast are normally tertiary charges at best (some must be considered negligible in counting conflict) and thus worth at most a minor point of difference. (LoAR Jul 88, p. 8)

A major point of difference can be derived from the addition of the tertiary on a single ordinary. (LoAR 26 Mar 89, p. 2)

The addition of the tiny tertiary charge to one of the group of secondaries [is] not really enough to carry this clear. (LoAR 30 Jul 89, p. 19)

We do not normally consider the ermine spots of the fur [to be] tertiary charges "within the meaning of the act". (LoAR 27 Aug 89, p. 27)

Even under the new rules, two changes to the tertiaries are required to derive difference. (LoAR 26 Nov 89, pp. 38-39)

[Sea griffin holding a small charge vs. winged sea-lion] Even if you allow a full major point under the old rules and a clear visual difference under the new for the type of monster, we could not see giving the additional difference needed under either set of rules for the tiny [charge] the monster holds. (LoAR 31 Dec 89, p. 21)

Thin-line Heraldry

See also "Fimbriation"

Whether you blazon this as a [charge] fimbriated or a [charge] voided, this is "thin line heraldry" which renders the [charge] unrecognizable and is not acceptable. (LoAR 27 Sep 87, p. 10)

[Quarterly argent and lozengy gules and argent, in bend two pairs of oak leaves pilewise, fructed, vert, overall a fillet cross sable] The fillet cross here is perilously close to "thin line heraldry". (LoAR 19 Dec 87, p. 18) [Device rejected for this and other reasons]

The "bordure" about the canton of augmentation is clearly there only to avoid breaking tincture and ill succeeds for it is so small as to be nearly invisible at any distance and in any other context would be decried as "thin line heraldry". (LoAR 23 Apr 88, p. 16)

[Four tablet-weaving cards, each threaded with four threads palewise] This [is] "thin line heraldry". (LoAR 23 Apr 88, p. 17)

[Three triangles voided and conjoined] The device is "thin line heraldry". (LoAR 23 Apr 88, p. 18)

[Two piles issuant from base, fimbriated] Blazoned with two piles, they [are] neither truly voided nor truly fimbriated and, in either case, constituted "thin line heraldry". (LoAR 23 Apr 88, p. 21)

Although the flaunches were blazoned on the letter of intent as "[color] voided" they are in fact thin partial arcs of [color] placed on [the metal] field: an almost classic instance of "thin line heraldry". (LoAR 29 May 88, p. 20)

[A pile bendwise sinister fimbriated] The fimbriation here is naught but "thin line heraldry" and it is difficult to see how it could be drawn with proper thickness without diminishing the identifiability of the [overall charge]. (LoAR Jun 88, p. 14)

[A cross crosslet fitchy fimbriated] The cross here ... is really "thin line heraldry": the [color cross] has so little contrast with the [color] field that the [metal] fimbriation is all that delineates the cross. In fact, it appears like a complex cross only in outline. (LoAR Jun 88, p. 15)

Fimbriated gores have been banned as excessive "thin line heraldry" since August, 1983. (LoAR Jul 88, p. 18)

The voiding of an inherently complex charge like the mullet of eight points is exacerbated by the elongation of the mullet to base and can be considered "thin line heraldry". (LoAR Jul 88, p. 18)

Despite its simplicity, the voided heart must be considered "thin line heraldry". (LoAR 30 Oct 88, p. 19)

Although we must admit that bordures of flame have been registered before, ... what is depicted on the emblazon is in fact a bordure fimbriated (actually a bordure rayonny gules, fimbriated Or). It seem inconsistent to ban fimbriated bordures as non-period practice when they are plain and not to do so when they are more complex. Moreover, the additional fimbriation on of the compass star here can only add to the impression of "thin line" heraldry. (LoAR 27 Nov 88, p. 26)

[The] pall of chain ... is nearly unidentifiable and was felt by many to be tantamount to "thin line heraldry". (LoAR 15 Jan 89, p. 11)

Henceforth, any plain ordinary which may be placed in the center of the shield may be voided or given equivalent treatment (e.g., fimbriation if it is of the tincture of the field) without this being considered "thin line heraldry" or excessive fimbriation, even if that ordinary is charged, so long as no other voiding or fimbriation is present on the submitted armoury. (CL 20 May 89, p. 3)

[A saltire parted and fretted, the points of intersection fretted with four annulets] The diminution in size of the saltire-annulet combination brings it under the ban on "thin-line heraldry" in the old rules and the requirement for identifiability in the new rules (Armorial Identifiability, X.3, p. 11). (LoAR 26 Nov 89, p. 40)

The cloves were too complex a charge to void (or chase or fimbriate, depending on how you were looking at the cloves).... They become classic "thin-line heraldry" when voided. This is a problem not only under the old rules (AR6c, Complexity Limit) but also under the new (Armorial Identifiability, VIII.3: "Voiding and fimbriation may only be used with simple geometric charges placed in the center of the design."). (LoAR 31 Dec 89, p. 22)

[Pine needles] It should be noted that this distinctly gives the appearance of "thin line heraldry" by Western standards. However, as these needles have been documented to be a well-defined charge in Japanese emblazons and are sole charges, we are inclined to cut some slack. [Device registered] (LoAR 25 Feb 90, p. 5)

Tierce

The "side" ... is not actually illegal but it is certainly poor style. (LoAR 26 Apr 87, p. 12)

There was almost universal agreement amongst the commenters that [the] lengthy appeal that a side and a dexter tierce should be counted completely differently ignored the visual reality and the current rules of difference in the Society. (LoAR 23 Apr 88, p. 9)

A tierce is a charge, not a field division. (LoAR 18 Sep 88, p. 18)

This charged tierce is very poor style. (LoAR 24 Dec 88, p. 10)

Tincture

Since ... changes of tincture which are derivative from a change in the tincture of the field are diminished in force, we must conclude that this badge does in fact conflict. (LoAR Jul 88, p. 17)

Please tell the submittor (or her heraldic artist) that peach is not usually considered a valid variant for Or! (LoAR 26 Nov 89, p. 18)

No evidence has been provided for simple coats with fields quarterly of three tinctures in period. (LoAR 26 Nov 89, p. 34)

A bordure compony gules and Or may not be placed on a field Or: under both sets of rules, this would reduce the identifiability of the bordure to an unacceptable degree. (Note that the submittors intuitively grasped this problem: the field and the bordure are depicted in radically different shades of Or.) (LoAR 26 Nov 89, p. 34)

Under both the old rules and the new the contrast between the [argent flower] which lies entirely on the erminois portion of the field is not acceptable (note that the section on contrasting tinctures in the new rules allows good contrast between an element equally divided of a color and metal and any other element as long as identifiability is maintained). The back portion of the [monster's head] and that [flower] just vanish into the field in an unacceptable manner. (LoAR 26 Nov 89, p. 34)

Manuscripts, cloth remnants, descriptions and receipts for dyes make it clear that what we consider purpure was often thought of as azure in period and vice versa. That is leaving aside the fact that colour shifts in dyes often turned purpure to azure or possible to gules, depending on the dye used. That is a very concrete reason why purpure was so seldom used in heraldry. (LoAR 17 Jun 90, p. 15)

Tincture and Charge Limit

See also, Complexity

Note that the five types of charges and four tinctures are marginal under the old rules and clearly violate the Tincture and Charge Limit of the new (VIII.1.a, p. 9). [Device registered under the old rules] (LoAR 26 Nov 89, p. 4)

Title, Alternate

The current tradition of generation of alternate titles cannot support the extension of the title of "Don" to be a general title for armigers. (CL 7 May 89, p. 5)

[Barun and Barunin as titles in German for Baron and Baroness, respectively] We see no barrier to usage of these titles and they are hereby sanctioned for use in the Society. (CL 7 May 89, p. 5)

Title, Heraldic

[Imprimatur Pursuivant] Neither the specifically religious overtones of the term nor the hint of censorship seem appropriate for a Society heraldic title. (LoAR 24 May 87, p. 11)

Heraldic titles are registered independently of the status of the position (thus it would be theoretically possible to have [Title] Pursuivant, [Title] Herald, [Title] Herald Extraordinary or [Title] Principal Herald). (LoAR 19 Dec 87, p. 19) (See also: LoAR 21 Jan 90, p. 22)

Like the title of pursuivant and the title of herald, the title herald extraordinary is an indicator of rank and is bestowed by the kingdom. From the time the title was created by Master Wilhelm, it has often been used as a "retirement title" for heralds who are still active in Society heraldry at the kingdom or Society level but who no longer hold any administrative position. It is a signal mark of honour and should be bestowed sparingly. If a title is bestowed on someone as Herald Extraordinary, that title is usually retained by the person with Herald Extraordinary rank as long as he or she is active as a herald. (LoAR 21 Jan 90, p. 22)

Any order name or heraldic title which appears on the list of awards and titles or the list of heraldic titles which appears in the 1987 edition of the Armorial and Ordinary published by Free Trumpet Press under the auspices of the Laurel Office shall be considered to be registered for the purposes of section A of the passages on protection in the Administrative Handbook. Any item which does not otherwise appear in Laurel correspondence shall be considered to have an acceptance date of August 1, 1987. (CL, 31 Jul 90, p. 2)

Tower

Based both on period practise and modern perception, it is clear that the difference between a single-towered tower and a multi-towered castle should be at most a minor point of difference as we currently count difference. (LoAR 29 May 88, p. 20)

Tree and Branch

The inversion of the tree diminishes its recognizability and therefore its visual force. (LoAR 25 Jan 87, p. 20)

The flora was blazoned as a "scrog" on the letter of intent and this is a term in Scots blazon. However, its obscurity makes it inaccessible for the average heraldic artist and it must be avoided here since a perfectly good "plain language" option [a leafless branch] is available. (LoAR Aug 87, p. 2)

While the inverted tree occasioned much discussion..., in view of the well-known arms of MacGregor, which feature a tree in a distinctly diagonal position, and the natural occurrence of upended trees, this does not seem an unreasonable charge. (LoAR 26 Mar 89, p. 4)

[An oak tree and a fir tree inverted conjoined at the trunk] The conjoining of two different types of tree, taken together with the inversion of the pine tree, [is] too far outside period style. (LoAR 27 Aug 89, p. 20)

Tressure

[See also, Orle]

The double tressure [flory is] too close to the tressure of Scotland.... (LoAR 27 Sep 86, p. 9)

[A tressure fleury] The tressure is drawn in a non-standard manner. (LoAR 25 Jan 87, p. 25)

The device was blazoned with a double tressure, but the emblazon showed a bordure gules charged with an orle sable, which would not be licit. (LoAR 28 Jun 87, p. 4)

The use of the orle fleury here, particularly given the Or and gules tinctures used, is far too close to the reserved tressure of Scotland. (LoAR 30 Sep 89, p. 13)

[An orle surmounted at its corners by three fleurs-de-lys in pall] The orle is suggestive of the royal tressure of Scotland. [Returned for other conflict] (LoAR 29 Apr 90, p. 17)

The only charge which appears to have been regularly surmounted by a chief was the bordure (and even then the practice was decidedly variable). Such period examples of orles or tressures in conjunction with a chief that we have been able to locate have the full orle placed below the chief, as in the arms of the Worshipful Company of Musicians. (LoAR 17 Jun 90, p. 13)

Trian Aspect

Like dice tambourines are allowed quasi-trian aspect. (LoAR 28 May 90, p. 11)

Triangle

[Three triangles in fess, the center one inverted and doubled in size, within a tressure fleury] This is distinctly non-period style.... The central motif, the three triangles, depend for their arrangement on a differentiation in size that is not at all medieval: charges in period generally expanded to fill the available space. The use of triangles as a primary motif is an anomaly, although one [has been] permitted in the past. Taken together with the non-standard arrangement, the modern size differentiation of the primary charges and the unusual rendition of the tressure, it is just too much. (LoAR 25 Jan 87, p. 25)

[Two scalene triangles voided and interlaced in saltire] The primary charge [is] visually not two triangles, but a heavy-duty paperclip.... The scalene triangle is not a "defined shape" and it certainly is not a period heraldic charge. (LoAR 23 Apr 88, p. 18)


U

V

Vampire

It was the consensus of the commenting heralds that the bat with the drops of blood was too suggestive of a vampiric persona which might be offensive to a substantial portion of the populace (and would be demonstrably a claim to powers beyond the normal sphere), even without the allusion to Dracula involved in the byname Draco. (LoAR 26 Oct 86, p. 12)

Vetû

[A charged lozenge throughout fimbriated] The lozenge throughout is equivalent to "vetû" and that should never be fimbriated. (LoAR 23 Apr 88, p. 16)

Charging a chape or vetû is extremely bad practice in itself. (LoAR 30 Oct 88, p. 14)

[Vetû vs. a lozenge throughout] Long-standing Society precedent considers the two to be interchangeably depicted. (LoAR 17 Jun 90, p. 16)

Visual Weight

[Barry of six, in pale on each trait a goutte] While a strict interpretation of the definitions for charges would imply that the gouttes here should be counted as charges, the small size of each charge diminishes the visual impact of each one. There is no doubt that visually they have only the weight of tertiary charges. (LoAR 25 Jan 87, p. 28)

Voiding

In period a delf pierced would not have the piercing cover such a large portion of its "area" nor would it serve as a "frame" for another charge. However, both the proportionally greater "voided" space and the "frame" effect have been previously established in Society usage for mascles, which are no more complex visually, so it would appear pedantic to object to such a usage here. (LoAR 26 Apr 87, p. 1)

The use of a voided charge as a frame for another charge, whether or not that other charge is the primary charge is more than a trifle eccentric by mundane standards, period or modern, but it has been done frequently [enough] in Society heraldry to be accepted if the design is simple as it is here. (LoAR Aug 87, p. 6)

Despite its simplicity, the voided heart must be considered "thin line heraldry". (LoAR 30 Oct 88, p. 19)

Henceforth, any plain ordinary which may be placed in the center of the shield may be voided or given equivalent treatment (e.g., fimbriation if it is of the tincture of the field) without this being considered "thin line heraldry" or excessive fimbriation, even if that ordinary is charged, so long as no other voiding or fimbriation is present on the submitted armoury. (CL 20 May 89, p. 3)

While the degree of commentary on the issue of fimbriating and voiding complex ordinaries has not really been adequate to allow a clear-cut general precedent, there does seem to be a sort of queasy acceptance of such designs as this when the fimbriation gives the appearance of a diminutive of an ordinary and there are a limited number of tinctures involved. (LoAR 30 Sep 89, p. 2)

The cloves were too complex a charge to void (or chase or fimbriate, depending on how you were looking at the cloves).... They become classic "thin-line heraldry" when voided. This is a problem not only under the old rules (AR6c, Complexity Limit) but also under the new (Armorial Identifiability, VIII.3: "Voiding and fimbriation may only be used with simple geometric charges placed in the center of the design."). (LoAR 31 Dec 89, p. 22)

[Quarterly, five hearts conjoined in annulo, bases to center, voided] There is no doubt that the "voided heart" effect is too complex, especially when the hearts are conjoined in this unusual manner to form a pseudo-rose.... Even if you try and call it a single rose, there is substantial agreement in the College that the petals of a rose should not be voided, whether or not so blazoned. (LoAR 21 Jan 90, p. 19)

The voiding/fimbriation of the mullet unacceptably diminished its identifiability and, taken with its peripheral position, ... was just not period style. (LoAR 17 Jun 90, p. 15)

Volant

[The principal herald] has argued that a "properly drawn" pegasus volant will have the body essentially horizontal while the same beast rampant has the body essentially vertical. Unfortunately, there is no standard default depiction for monsters volant in the Society (the issue tends not to arise in mundane heraldry!) and the body position tends to vary somewhat. [LoAR July 88, p. 20)

 


W

Wave Crest

The wave crest has, by consensus of the College, been barred from general use in Society heraldry since 1983. Given the strong feeling on the part of the commentors that this usage is not acceptable style and the lack of indication of period usage in the citation from Woodward..., there seems no reason to change this precedent. (LoAR 14 Jun 87, p. 6)

Wavy crested is an out-of-period construct. It was first banned as a line of division by Laurel in 1976. This ban was confirmed by a different Laurel in 1983. Neither the College nor Laurel sees any reason to change that restriction. (LoAR 26 Jul 87, p. 13)

Wheel

The blades of the Catherine wheel are attenuated, but are there: please ... draw the wheel properly, i.e., with prominent blades which look appropriately vicious. (LoAR Aug 87, p. 6)

Will, Heraldic

[The submittor] may file a copy of her "heraldic will" with the [Principal Herald's] Office and the Laurel Office to take effect in the event of her death, but the heir must be specified as a specific individual by name. (LoAR 30 Jul 89, pp. 2-3)

Wings

[The issue was raised of] whether the addition of the wings is indeed a minor point of difference or should be counted as a major point of difference. After consideration of the rulings in similar situations, we have concluded that the determination of difference depends not only [on] the proportion of the charge which is modified but also on the "pattern of recognition" involved. In other words, if the modifications create a beast which has a separate identity of its own, either in period or modern heraldry (e.g., a lion as opposed to a sea-lion), it is feasible for the modifications to produce a major point of difference. If the modifications produce a beast which is clearly derivative (e.g., a winged sheep), then the difference created will be minor. (LoAR 14 Jun 87, p. 6)

There is no difference derived from specifying the wings as those of an angel. [They were so specified to preserve a cant] (LoAR 18 Sep 88, p. 5)

By the simple expedient of taking several standard depictions of wings in lure and wings in vol and inverting them, we came to the conclusion that the difference between the lure and the vol is essentially an inversion of the other charge. Therefore, it is our feeling that a clear difference exists between a wing and a vol. (LoAR 26 Nov 89, p. 15

The wing was blazoned on the letter of intent and the forms as proper and is in fact brown so it cannot be reblazoned in any heraldic tincture. If there had been any method of determining what sort of wing this was intended to be, we would have pended this for appropriate commentary and conflict-checking. However, the depiction of the wing is such that ... it was exceedingly unclear what type of wing this should be. As the wing is obviously of great importance to the submittor..., we felt this has to be returned for clarification/redesign. (LoAR 31 Dec 89, p. 25)

Wreath

The wreath of holly here would inevitably be taken to be a laurel wreath: the berries are just not that prominent on a holly wreath and, given the wide variations in rendition of the wreath required for group arms, the leaf shapes are not distinctive enough to make it obvious that this is not a laurel wreath. (LoAR Aug 87, p. 11)

The laurel wreath is not only too small, but also fades into the argent portion of the field to such an extent that it was virtually unidentifiable at any distance. Making the wreath larger and in a tincture like gules with acceptable contrast with both argent and sable, would resolve the problem. (LoAR Aug 87, p. 13)

[A wreath of rosemary, lying as on a bordure, proper] This wreath does bear a strong resemblance to one of the common renditions of the "group laurel wreath", having no fruit or flowers to distinguish it. [Returned for conflict] (LoAR 19 Mar 88, p. 13)

[On a chief, a laurel wreath between two other charges] The laurel wreath here is just too small to fulfill the requirements of AR9a. (LoAR 19 Mar 88, p. 19)

[A wreath of pin oak foliage] Unfortunately, even when properly drawn, the wreath is too evocative of the laurel wreath required for groups. (LoAR Aug 88, p. 23)

The wreath of clover [is] visually too close to a laurel wreath. Note that, while groups are required to have a laurel wreath on their arms, they may not have one on their badges. (LoAR 26 Mar 89, p. 21)

A wreath of pansies has previously been ruled to be too close to the queens' wreath of roses to be registered to one who is not entitled to a wreath of roses (April, 1985). (LoAR 18 Jun 89, p. 9)

The enflaming of the laurel wreath rendered it unidentifiable enough that it is not really a "significant" part of the design. (LoAR 27 Aug 89, p. 21)

After much discussion we decided that the orle of rosemary was visually too close to one of the standard depictions of the required Society laurel wreath. Over many years stylistically aware heralds have struggled to bring a more "bushy" laurel wreath into general use, but the usual laurel wreath has small, semi-paired leaves often as small and narrow as those on [this submittor's] rosemary. Moreover, after some intensive pawing through the emblazons of group armoury on the part of the Laurel staff, we have come to the conclusion that the "closed" wreath, while unusual, is by no means unprecedented in Society usage, particularly in older coats. (LoAR 26 Nov 89, p. 37)

[A chaplet of roses] While [the submitting herald] noted that the blazon had been selected specifically to distinguish it from the wreath of roses reserved to Queens and Ladies of the Rose, this is a distinction rather than a difference. Not only are chaplets regularly listed under "wreath", but several pieces of royal armoury have the wreath blazoned as a chaplet (most notably that of the Queen of the Middle).... As a territorial princess is not eligible to become a member of the Order of the Rose on the basis of her service to her principality, she may not use the wreath of roses (however blazoned) on her official or personal armoury. (LoAR 29 Apr 90, p. 15)

Wreathing

As an ordinary wreathed of one colour (or "cabled", as the original blazon had it) has previously been disallowed (February, 1985), we have substituted an orle invected: any interior diapering would not contribute difference in any case. (LoAR Aug 87, p. 6) (See also: LoAR Jul 88, p. 3; LoAR 27 Nov 88, p. 24)

The basis for the limitation on wreathing of two tinctures of the same category is the reduction of identifiability that ensues. (LoAR Aug 88, p. 17)

[A bordure wreathed of a metal and a color] The situation here is analogous to that which exists for a bordure compony: you may not use as one of the tincture on the bordure the tincture of the field. (LoAR Aug 88, p. 20)

X

Y

Z

 




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