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The Herald 2

In the late 13th Century lords started hiring their own private heralds. These private Heralds added to the lord’s prestige by announcing his name, achievemnets and tirles as he entered the arena for the jousting tournament.The herlad would wear the coat of arms of his lord on his surcoat. In the 15th Century tabards replaced surcoats as the fashionable garment to wear over armor and also became the official garment that the heraldwould wear. The last King to wear a tabard was King Henry VII and by the sixteenth century tabards were outof style for knights. The heralds kept wearing the distinctive uniforms and still do to the present day for official heraldic activities.There are thee differing levels of herald....

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The Herald 1

There is no evidence that coats of arms were passed down from generation to generation until the Middle Ages. The hereditary element of heraldry did not become common until armor came into popular usage and heraldic symbols were recognized as leader's emblems. When this idea spread and became adopted in the wider populace heralds became a necessity. The job of the herald was to ensure that the rules of heraldry were followed and there was proper differentiation between coats of arms in order to protect against infringement of copyright of a particular coat of arms. They also would ensure that no two men would bear identical coat of arms. Heralds were very similar to modern day ambassadors, they did not...

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The Beginning of Heraldry

Heraldry finds its origins in pictorial devices which were used as individual or tribal marks of identification by ancient civilizations. These family devices were more like badges than coats of arms and their assumption at a certain stage of civilization became necessary because people were very much alike, and without some well-known mark tattooed on their skin or carried on the person in some prominent way, friends and foes in large groups were indistinguishable. Early tribal or totem devices were almost always the figure of some living creature, and they were placed wherever was practical, marked on the skin, worked into clothing, painted on tents, shields and other belongings. Whenever an animal was chosen as a tribal mark, the animal...

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The Lions of England, part 2

What is the origin of the second lion in the Royal Arms of England? Some historians suggest that it came into the Arms through Henry I’s marriage to Adeliza, daughter of Godfrey of Louvain, image above, who bore a lion in allusion to his name (Leuwon : Leones). But there is no proof that the second lion was intended to commemorate this union, it may indeed have been added purely for artistic effect. From his grandfather Henry II is supposed to have inherited two gold lions on red, but they first appear as an undoubted shield of arms in the seal of his son John. But Prince John’s lions looked not out of the shield but over their shoulders (reguardant)....

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The Lions of England, part 1

The Lion is a lively image of a good soldier, who must be valiant of  courage., strong of body, politicke in counsell, and a foe to feare.”  -- Guillim, Display of HeraldryThe Armorial Roll of Caerlaverock from 1300 describes the Arms of the King of England as “ Three leopards of fine gold set on red; courant, fierce, haughty and cruel; to signify that like them the King is dreadful to his enemies, for his bite is slight to none who brave his anger, and yet towards such as seek his friendship or submit to his power his kindness is soon rekindled.” In heraldry a leopard represents a lion staring you in the face, the three lions have stood in the Royal Arms...

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