Jewish Genealogy in Argentina
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|THE MANUAL OF HERALDRY - ANONYMUS|
LINES USED IN PARTING THE FIELD.
Escutcheons that have more than one tincture are divided by lines; the straight lines are either perpendicular |, horizontal —, diagonal line dexter \, and diagonal line sinister /.
Curved and angular lines are numerous, and each has an Heraldic name expressive of its form. The names and figures of those most commonly used by English armorists are as follow:—
Wavy , or undé
Embattled , or crenelle
Nowy , or franché
Embattled grady :
Arched or enarched
If a shield is divided into four equal parts, it is said to be quartered: this may be done two ways, viz.—
QUARTERED PER CROSS —The shield is divided into four parts, called quarters, by an horizontal and perpendicular line, crossing each other in the centre of the field, each of which is numbered.
QUARTERED PER SALTIER , which is made by two diagonal lines, dexter and sinister, crossing each other in the centre of the field.
The Escutcheon is sometimes divided into a great number of parts, in order to place in it the arms of several families to which one is allied; this is called a genealogical achievement. The compartments are called QUARTERINGS .
All members of the same family claim the same bearings in their coats of arms; and to distinguish the principal bearer from his descendants or relatives, it was necessary to invent some sign so that the degree of consanguinity might be known. These signs are called DIFFERENCES . During the Crusades, the only difference consisted in the bordure or border, which, as the name implies, was a border or edging running round the edge of the shield. The colour and form of this border served to distinguish the leaders of the different bands that served under one duke or chieftain. The same difference might be used to denote a diversity between particular persons descended from one family. At the present time they are not used to denote a difference, but as one of the ordinaries to a coat of arms.
The annexed example exhibits the arms of the Monastery of Bermondsey. Party per pale, azure and gules; a bordure, argent . This bordure is plain; but they may be formed by any of the foregoing lines.
The annexed example is or, a bordure engrailed, gules .
The differences used by armorists at the present time are nine in number. They not only distinguish the sons of one family, but also denote the subordinate degrees in each house.
Should either of the nine brothers have male children, the eldest child would place the label on the difference that distinguished his father; the second son would place the crescent upon it; the third the mullet; continuing the same order for as many sons as he may have.
The label only, is used in the arms of the royal family as a difference; but the points of the label are charged with different figures to distinguish the second and succeeding sons. The arms of the sons of King George III. were thus distinguished: the shield of the arms of the Prince of Wales by a label; the Duke of York's by the label, the center point of which was charged with a red cross; that of the Duke of Clarence by a label, the dexter and sinister points of which were charged with an anchor, the center point with the red cross; each of the succeeding sons were differenced by charges on the points of the labels.
All the figures denoting differences are also used as perfect charges on the shield; but their size and situation will sufficiently determine whether the figure is used as a perfect coat of arms, or is introduced as a difference or dimunition.
Sisters have no differences in their coats of arms. They are permitted to bear the arms of their father, as the eldest son does after his father's decease.
Guillim, Leigh, and other ancient armorists mention divers figures, which, they assert, were formerly added to coats of arms as marks of degradation for slander, cowardice, murder, and other crimes, and to them they give the name of abatements of honour; others have called them blots in the escutcheon: but as no instance can be produced of such dishonourable marks having been borne in a coat of arms, they may justly be considered as chimerical, or at any rate obsolete, and unworthy of consideration at the present time. Porney pithily observes, "that arms being marks of honour, they cannot admit of any note of infamy, nor would any one bear them if they were so branded. It is true, a man may be degraded for divers crimes, particularly high treason; but in such cases the escutcheon is reversed, trod upon, and torn in pieces, to denote a total extinction and suppression of the honour and dignity of the person to whom it belonged."
The only abatement used in heraldry is the baton : this denotes illegitimacy. It is borne in the escutcheons of the dukes that assume the royal arms as the illegitimate descendants of King Charles the Second.
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