Considering the following change to my arms. Thoughts?

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MenkAndemicael
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Considering the following change to my arms. Thoughts?

Postby MenkAndemicael » 13 Jun 2017, 02:34

I've been considering abandoning an invented line of division (tentatively called 'thorny' or 'épiné), and using "dancetty of three.' It has more meaning anyway, as my grandfather was born in a town founded by his direct male ancestor before 1400, which has three mountains as its main geographic feature. That seems more
What are your thoughts? Try to add something innovative to heraldry and eliminate any chance of inadvertent ursurpation at the cost of confusion and significance, or go with something both traditional and more meaningful at the cost of having to adjust various registrations?

Before:
per fess "Thorny"
Image

After:

per fess Dancetty of three
Image

per fess Wavy of three
Image

Iain Boyd
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Re: Considering the following change to my arms. Thoughts?

Postby Iain Boyd » 13 Jun 2017, 04:59

An interesting conundrum!

I like your original partition line. It is different and, dare I say it, unique.

However, it does loose some of its significance when reduced in size - see the full arms at the bottom of the original posting.

On the other hand, I like the suggested alternatives.

The 'dancetty of three' is probably more allusive to mountains while the 'wavy of three' is more suggestive of water rather mountains - unless the mountains have become eroded over time. (Personally, I prefer the 'wavy of three'.)

I do not see the registrations as being a problem - depending on the cost.

In the end, it may really boil down to how much use you have made of your existing arms. If you have bookplates, paintings, carvings, jewellery, flags or other decorated items then it might be better just to stick with your original design.

Regards,

Iain Boyd

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Chris Green
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Re: Considering the following change to my arms. Thoughts?

Postby Chris Green » 13 Jun 2017, 06:40

I recommend that you do not change.

Once you surrender to the idea that you can "improve" your arms, the slope rapidly becomes more slippery. One day you may come to feel (or perhaps an influential family member may persuade you) that a composition composed of just vert and or is somewhat boring, or that a bee vert isn't very natural, or that the rose should be made more interesting by being barbed and seeded gules, or that the bee should be replaced by a cheetah's head affronté. That could never happen, you think. But why not, or something similar? Once you have opened Pandora's box the seductive whisper: "oh just one more small change", is always there, always nagging the subconscious.
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MenkAndemicael
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Re: Considering the following change to my arms. Thoughts?

Postby MenkAndemicael » 13 Jun 2017, 07:10

I'm honestly stacking the deck a bit in terms of keeping, because the "3 mountains" is such an objectively better choice I had to give it a fight. Cost really isn't an issue and a simpler line makes a couple of more elaborate and expensive projects I have planned even easier. Bottom line there's simply much more of a sense of place, history and heritage in the three mountains. I just didn't think I was *allowed* to go that simple.

My initial thinking was that something as simple as a bee, rose, and basic division *had* to have been used by someone so I had to push for something more complex to avoid ursurpation, but that was making assumptions both about heraldic jurisdictions (I'm in the US), the use of colors in old arms (green was rare and not seen as particularly heroic), bees and roses together, and above, all the frequency of old arms themselves.

I do like the line (though it does get fiddly at a distance), but I've been irked for several years (a decade now!) by the simple fact that there isn't a clean way to blazon it. Ive talked to various heraldic authorities and people on forums and am always left with the fact that it needs to be *shown,* not *spoken.*

My gut says go simple and put the effort and thought into novel emblazonments rather than in the blazon itself.

Does anyone have any resources or experience that might point to something similar having been in actual use? I haven't even come across it in SCA arms...

For certain, no rush. There's definitely more "refrigerator test" time in my future.

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Michael F. McCartney
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Re: Considering the following change to my arms. Thoughts?

Postby Michael F. McCartney » 13 Jun 2017, 07:56

I've admired your current arms, as both heraldically unique and visually quite attractive, for years; and would be sad to see them go! But of course they are yours, not mine.

FWIW, of the two new options, I prefer the dancetty version; but both are heraldically correct and attractive, if a bit generic compared to the thorny original.

You mentioned doing a new refrigerator test before deciding - yes! But you might want to let it run for two or three months, rather than weeks, to give your subconscious ample opportunity to digest the candidates and hopefully come to see one of them as "the" best.
Michael F. McCartney
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Chris Green
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Re: Considering the following change to my arms. Thoughts?

Postby Chris Green » 13 Jun 2017, 07:59

There are any number of unusual lines of partition as this Wiki page shows:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Line_(heraldry)

At least yours has an English name.
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Martin Goldstraw
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Re: Considering the following change to my arms. Thoughts?

Postby Martin Goldstraw » 13 Jun 2017, 09:04

As a mere observer who has seen quite a few armigers who have assumed arms make changes (sometimes more than once) to their arms, I often wonder if the desire for change is simply based upon the principle of "easy come, easy go"; I can therefore I will. Examples of changes made by those who have received a grant from (for example) The College of Arms or The Lord Lyon are extremely rare and this may well be because any changes would involve considerable expense but it nevertheless ensures stability and continuity.

I like your arms the way they are, but they are your arms not mine and any decision is yours and yours alone to make.
Martin Goldstraw
Cheshire Heraldry
http://cheshire-heraldry.org.uk

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JMcMillan
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Re: Considering the following change to my arms. Thoughts?

Postby JMcMillan » 13 Jun 2017, 14:01

Having been involved in the discussion that led to the "thorny" partition line, I may be biased but...

Ditto to what Martin said. It occurs to me that this is a bit like cosmetic surgery. People begin by tweaking the nose a little bit, then have to adjust the eyes, and then maybe some padding along the jaw line. After it's all done, if they're lucky enough to have a really good surgeon, they end up looking just like every other one of the surgeon's patients. And if they have an incompetent surgeon, they look like a hideous mess.

In this case, I think changing the partition line would make your arms look just like all the other patients. I think alluding to the acacia bushes of Ethiopia with the thorny partition line is much more distinctive than the fairly hackneyed dancetty for mountains.
Joseph McMillan
Alexandra, Virginia, USA

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MenkAndemicael
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Re: Considering the following change to my arms. Thoughts?

Postby MenkAndemicael » 13 Jun 2017, 17:02

Quick thought to take the blazon concern off the table: How about calling my line "barbed" or "barby?" Also an option, "wattled" or "wattly." Wattle is the common name for the acacia, at least in Australia.
It's English, specifically descriptive (as opposed to something that can be interpreted in numerous ways like thorny) and it doesn't overlap with the existing Finnish "thorny" line of division:

Image

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Arthur Radburn
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Re: Considering the following change to my arms. Thoughts?

Postby Arthur Radburn » 13 Jun 2017, 19:25

MenkAndemicael wrote:How about calling my line "barbed" or "barby?"
This could be confusing, as "barbed" already has two meanings :
1 - in connection with the rose ("barbed and seeded")
2 - adding an arrowhead at the end of a charge, as in the arms of the Witbank Chamber of Commerce & Industry, which has a "cross nowy barbed" on the shield and three pallets barbed in the crest :

Image
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Arthur Radburn
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