College of Arms Newsletters 2015

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Chris Green
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Re: College of Arms Newsletters 2015

Postby Chris Green » 01 Nov 2015, 19:29

Could we try to stick closer to the heraldry please.
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Chas Charles-Dunne
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Re: College of Arms Newsletters 2015

Postby Chas Charles-Dunne » 02 Nov 2015, 10:54

Well how is it to be blazoned then? The colour cannot be left out. If it was blazoned a naked woman proper, by the law of averages that would make her Chinese. But that is obviously not what neither the College, nor the armiger wanted.

If a particular genus is required, it must be blazoned as such. I see no other way round it.
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Martin Goldstraw
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Re: College of Arms Newsletters 2015

Postby Martin Goldstraw » 02 Nov 2015, 13:55

It is perhaps more difficult in the 21st century than it used to be in times past where it was perhaps safe to assume that in an English grant unless stated otherwise the default was an English Person which at that time would have been white but there are also blazons which make it unnecessary to be so obvious as to skin tone. One example which springs to mind is that of Vernon of Haslington (Visitations of Cheshire 1613) where the crest is blazoned "A demi woman habited Azure, hair dishevelled Or, holding in the arms a garb of the last". It is practically a given (or it was then) that a blond would be a white European. Spurstow of Spurstow is also similar in that the crest is "A woman's head affronte, couped below the breast proper, hair dishevelled Or".

In both of the above instances, it is relatively safe to make an assumption. Though if one took the blazon literally and without a certain flexibility (taking the rule that anything appearing before a tincture is of that tincture), the example of Haslington would be a somewhat blue skinned humanoid as in the film Avatar!
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Michael F. McCartney
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Re: College of Arms Newsletters 2015

Postby Michael F. McCartney » 03 Nov 2015, 05:47

Avatar - cool! Opens a new world of beasties for our heraldic bestiary...
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Arthur Radburn
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Re: College of Arms Newsletters 2015

Postby Arthur Radburn » 04 Nov 2015, 11:33

Perhaps "fair-skinned" might be preferable to "Caucasian" in a blazon.

It would be interesting to know why Garter decided to define the woman as "Caucasian", given that it is taken for granted in the heraldic world that fair skin is either described as "proper" or not described at all and accepted as the default. A new College policy perhaps, or a request by the grantee?
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Arthur Radburn
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Chris Green
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Re: College of Arms Newsletters 2015

Postby Chris Green » 04 Nov 2015, 11:44

Given that the grantee is the Anatomical Society I would surmise that the terminology was theirs.
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JMcMillan
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Re: College of Arms Newsletters 2015

Postby JMcMillan » 04 Nov 2015, 18:25

Is anyone actually confused by the allegedly misleading blazoning of a "white European" as "Caucasian"?

If not, is anyone with "white" skin actually offended by being called Causasian? Who?

Do the Armenians, Azerbaijanis, Georgians, Daghestanis, Circassians, Chechens, etc., object to a term derived from their home region being used as a broader ethnological/anthropological category?

If people in neither the wider nor the narrower category are offended, I have a hard time seeing how anyone else has standing to be offended. If no one is actually offended, and the term is not intended to offend, how can it possibly be offensive?

If we were anthropologists, it might be important to conform to modern anthropological taxonomy, but I'm not an anthropologist, and I care no more about the special jargon of the field than I do about the astronomer who tries to tell me that autumn begins on the equinox when I know perfectly well that it begins the day after Labor Day.
Joseph McMillan
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Mike_Oettle
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Re: College of Arms Newsletters 2015

Postby Mike_Oettle » 05 Nov 2015, 17:05

Joe, you may not believe it, but this is a matter of some contention in my country.
The fear of the Lord is a fountain of life.
[Proverbs 14:27]

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Chris Green
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Re: College of Arms Newsletters 2015

Postby Chris Green » 05 Nov 2015, 17:28

Mike_Oettle wrote:Joe, you may not believe it, but this is a matter of some contention in my country.


I should point out that the term was not originated here but by the Anatomical Society for their grant of arms. Anyone who has an issue with that should take it up with them:

Head Office
c/o Department of Anatomy and Human Sciences
King’s College London
LONDON SE1 1UL
E-mail: maryanne.piggott@kcl.ac.uk

Can we please try to focus on the heraldry.
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Michael F. McCartney
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Re: College of Arms Newsletters 2015

Postby Michael F. McCartney » 07 Nov 2015, 20:34

Ditto Joe, other than for arms recorded in South Africa or other places in which it's a red flag. And re: autumn, which in California is a quaint East-coast term of no real significance here ;)

Back to the heraldry other than the unnecessarily controversial supporters, the arms themselves (the shield) are IMO really nice - simple, easy to recognize and remember even in small scale or at a distance (the postage stamp and flag in the distance/breeze tests) and nicely but subtly symbolic.

And re: an earlier comment by someone that the flag at a distance test is outdated -- if a particular design fails that test, it will likely also fare poorly on the postage stamp test, which is still quite relevant - think signet, business card, letterhead etc. Really the same test, one for the far-sighted and one for the near-sighted, in both cases focusing (no pun intended ... no really ...) on distinctive simplicity.
Michael F. McCartney
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