Church arms

Heraldry in the United States
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Robyn Heisel
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Location: Modesto, CA, USA

Re: Church arms

Postby Robyn Heisel » 09 Apr 2014, 04:43

Chris Green wrote:
explaining heraldry to a brick wall

At least when you explain heraldry to a brick wall it doesn't adopt a glazed expression, shrug its shoulders and say "whatever" :roll: !

Or keep pointing out what it doesn't like about the way the cross' nails are styled. I told my sister that once the blazon is registered, she could draw it however she wanted, provided it matches the blazon. :)

JMcMillan wrote:I think this looks nice, but I'd make one more pitch for the nails to be Gules instead of Sanguine.

Any particular reason why? I got attached to the sanguine because when I tried out the original design, the bordure looked too bright in gules.
Robyn Heisel

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Claus K Berntsen
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Re: Church arms

Postby Claus K Berntsen » 09 Apr 2014, 14:30

Robyn Heisel wrote:Any particular reason why? I got attached to the sanguine because when I tried out the original design, the bordure looked too bright in gules.

If you ask me, the answer is simple: Sanguine looks like Gules. I usually just think that it's a nuance of red, not a separate tincture.

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Daniel Gill
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Re: Church arms

Postby Daniel Gill » 09 Apr 2014, 14:40

There is no set shades for gules, or for any other tincture. Those things are best left to you and the artist. For example, (looking at this visual scale of shades), I rarely use the bright reds, like those at the bottom because 9 times out of 10, it doesn't look right. Generally ago for a richer, more blood like color (about a 1/3rd to 1/2 way up the scale). All of these are gules, though the top ones are so easily confused for black, that'd I'd call them sable... though they could be used to shade a charge tinctured gules.
(Fr.) Daniel C. Gill

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JMcMillan
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Re: Church arms

Postby JMcMillan » 09 Apr 2014, 20:08

Glad Claus and Daniel weighed in before I did.

I think all the "stains" as presently understood should be avoided like the plague. It's not clear to me that they have any real pedigree, and they serve no purpose, with the possible exception of tenné used for orange. (I might, just might, allow orange to be used in heraldry, but if so it should be called "orange," because tenné doesn't correctly mean orange, it means tawny, like a lion. If orange had existed as a concept when the heraldic tinctures were set during the Middle Ages, it probably would have been included on the list.)

All the justifications I find for murrey and tenné in the 19th century heraldic writers who were so fascinated by the stains are references not to arms but to liveries, i.e., the clothing worn to identify the retainers of great feudal magnates. One wonders why "sad blue," crimson, claret, scarlet, russet, chocolate, buff, and puce weren't listed among the stains as well.

Sanguine actually did appear in a British coat of arms before it showed up in the textbooks, but only in one, a Scottish matriculation for Clayhills of Innergowrie. But there's no reason for it. As Daniel says, any heraldic color can be of any shade as long as it's unmistakably what it says it is. In other words, if the blazon says Gules, it's red, and if the picture shows red--any shade of red--it's Gules.
Joseph McMillan
Alexandra, Virginia, USA

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Mike_Oettle
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Location: Port Elizabeth, Eastern Cape, South Africa

Re: Church arms

Postby Mike_Oettle » 26 Feb 2015, 14:33

Chris, you have nailed it on the head with this remark: “At least when you explain heraldry to a brick wall it doesn’t adopt a glazed expression, shrug its shoulders and say ‘whatever’.”

Robyn, you may or may not have come across the arms I designed for the church I belong to. The inspiration also came to me while sitting in church during the service. You will find them at http://www.oocities.org/kruisstaf/AllSaints.html
I like your ideas, and would be interested in seeing what is finally adopted (hopefully on your recommendation, rather than your sister’s!).
Regards,
Mike
The fear of the Lord is a fountain of life.
[Proverbs 14:27]

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Robyn Heisel
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Location: Modesto, CA, USA

Re: Church arms

Postby Robyn Heisel » 26 Feb 2015, 20:13

Thanks. Other things have sort of taken precedence right now, so the arms got pushed aside. But considering that my church just celebrated its third anniversary on February 12, now's the perfect time to work on it again.

I think a bordure is necessary, if nothing else but to set a boundary for the arms, but it also helps it look finished to my eye. I've been playing around in Photoshop again and came up with this:

Image

I kept the darker red, because I like it, but am willing to give up the term "sanguine." Thus: Argent, on a hill Vert a Latin cross composed of three nails Gules, within a bordure of the last. When shrunken down to a thumbnail it looks a little like a maple leaf, but those were the best nails I could find (I get my elements from Wikimedia Commons.)
Robyn Heisel

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Mike_Oettle
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Re: Church arms

Postby Mike_Oettle » 26 Feb 2015, 21:03

I rather like this version, but on two points I beg to differ from you, Robyn.
I agree that the bordure completes the design, and I like the darker red. But because it is darker, I do feel that it should be blazoned sanguine – the avoidance of stains in certain heraldic systems should not discourage you from pressing for its inclusion, because that specific colour carries immense Christian significance.
Secondly, while I felt the little white crosses on either side of the nail cross looked odd, I suggest that using smaller nail crosses in their stead would be appropriate, because Jesus was not crucified alone, and the comments of each of the two felons form an integral part of the Passion story.
Regards,
Mike
The fear of the Lord is a fountain of life.
[Proverbs 14:27]

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Larry Snyder
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Re: Church arms

Postby Larry Snyder » 01 Mar 2015, 22:06

Coventry Cathedral has used a cross of nails as a symbol sine, I believe, World War II. The Cathedral gift shop on line has several versions.

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Arthur Radburn
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Re: Church arms

Postby Arthur Radburn » 02 Mar 2015, 09:20

Larry Snyder wrote:Coventry Cathedral has used a cross of nails as a symbol since, I believe, World War II. The Cathedral gift shop on line has several versions.
The cross of nails originated at Coventry Cathedral. The nails came from the roof of the original cathedral which was bombed by the Luftwaffe in 1940. Smaller copies were later made for presentation as awards for various humanitarian achievements.
Regards
Arthur Radburn
IAAH Vice-President : Heraldic Education


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