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The limitations of Heraldry part 3

Some Arms were devised to record the incidents of feudal tenure. For example, the family of Argenton, who once held the manor of Wimondley, which required the tenant to present a cup of wine to the King at his coronation, bore three silver covered cups on a red shield. Sir John Argenton performed this service at the coronation of Richard II, and had the silver cup for his fee. As an example of early official Coats of Arms we have the silver sword on a black shield attached to the office of Hereditary Grand Champion of England. This was formerly borne by the Marmion family, whose descendant and successor to the Championship, the head of the family of Dymoke, still...

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The limitations of Heraldry part 2

Arms of casual origin include the basic ordinaries of the chief, fesse, chevron, and pale and they probably owe their origin to the bands of metal added to a shield for the sake of increasing its strength. A very early instance is the gold pale (vertical band) on a red shield Gules a pale or, belonging to Hugh de Grandemesnil, in the reign of Henry I, image below. Banded and studded shields appears on the pre-heraldic Bayeux Tapestry. Such shields became heraldic in character when the strengthening pieces were colored differently from the surface (field) of the shield upon which they were laid. The shield of a branch of the Montgomery family provides an example of Arms which sprang from the emblem...

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