Harris Tweed

Scottish Heraldry
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Chris Green
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Re: Harris Tweed

Postby Chris Green » 12 Feb 2016, 08:19

I just wonder whether LL hasn't painted himself into a corner with the Harris Tweed orb. Unless, as Iain suggests, the orb is blazoned in a special way, anyone who applies for arms to LL and wants to have an orb in their CoA will have to be told that it is "owned" by Harris Tweed.

Those Lamonts who bear Azure a Mound Or or variations upon it should perhaps be advised to give LL a timely reminder that they got the orb first!
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Re: Harris Tweed

Postby Arthur Radburn » 12 Feb 2016, 12:19

Iain Boyd wrote:'In outline' has never been used before, but, seemed to be an appropriate description for the charge.
In SA, on the few occasions when charges have been depicted in outline rather than solid, the Bureau of Heraldry has used the term "in umbra".

Chris Green wrote:I just wonder whether LL hasn't painted himself into a corner with the Harris Tweed orb. Unless, as Iain suggests, the orb is blazoned in a special way, anyone who applies for arms to LL and wants to have an orb in their CoA will have to be told that it is "owned" by Harris Tweed.
If Lord Lyon were to do that, it could be taken to mean that an armiger has exclusive rights to individual charges on his/her/its shield, rather than to the composition as a whole. Hopefully, Lord Lyon will not open such a can of worms!
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Re: Harris Tweed

Postby Chris Green » 12 Feb 2016, 12:54

Hopefully, Lord Lyon will not open such a can of worms!


Absolutely. But the fact that the HTA thinks that the grant of arms has given "their" orb extra legal protection over and above copyright might suggest that the can of worms is sitting on the draining board with a can-opener next to it.
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Re: Harris Tweed

Postby JMcMillan » 12 Feb 2016, 14:19

I don't see that granting the HTA an orb implies an exclusive right to that charge. Tincture matters. Otherwise what would happen with all those Scottish arms that have lions and galleys?

On the question of "why?" I wonder whether someone suggested to the HTA that they were somehow violating the Lord Lyon Act of 1672 by using this device without matriculation, possibly on the (spurious) grounds that an orb is intrinsically heraldic. Or perhaps that that the HTA was infringing on a royal symbol, as they would be if they used an outline representation of the Scots royal crown. Just speculating.

Or perhaps they just wanted a coat of arms and had to rationalize the expense for the shareholders.
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Martin Goldstraw
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Re: Harris Tweed

Postby Martin Goldstraw » 12 Feb 2016, 15:47

JMcMillan wrote: Or perhaps they just wanted a coat of arms and had to rationalize the expense for the shareholders.


My thoughts exactly.
Martin Goldstraw wrote:I think that the protection of brand spin may have been used to simply justify the expenditure.
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Re: Harris Tweed

Postby JMcMillan » 12 Feb 2016, 17:17

Martin Goldstraw wrote:
JMcMillan wrote: Or perhaps they just wanted a coat of arms and had to rationalize the expense for the shareholders.


My thoughts exactly.


Oh. Right. Should have given you a footnote. :oops:
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Re: Harris Tweed

Postby Arthur Radburn » 12 Feb 2016, 18:31

There's certainly some spin involved. Apart from the chairman of the HTA saying that the grant of arms is "the ultimate protection for our products," and will "ensure the security of our cloth and its heritage for generations to come," an intellectual property lawyer has been quoted as saying that a grant of arms carries "significant weight for Scottish brands, providing legal protection against unauthorised use of coats of arms." It "gives holders the ability to take action against unauthorised use of a coat of arms," he says, and "with the coat of arms a significant part of the Harris Tweed Authority's cloth, it is important for them to have avenues of defence available against copycats."

Perhaps this will inspire some other Scottish firms to apply for grants of arms incorporating their trademarks.

By enlarging one of the photos of the LPs, I was able to make out that the blazon appears to be about fourteen words long, so the orb is evidently described in some detail. The text in the photo isn't very clear, but what I could make out was : "Sable, ___ ___ ___ Or ___ Sable ___ of ___ ___ and edged Or". Let's hope we can soon fill in the blanks!
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Re: Harris Tweed

Postby Claus K Berntsen » 13 Feb 2016, 14:44

I asked on the Lyon Court Facebook, and was told that the orb is"Sable fimbriated Or; it is also described as banded and charged with bezants".

Therefore the blazon would be something like Sable, an orb Sable fimbriated Or, banded and charged with bezants all Or.

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Re: Harris Tweed

Postby Chris Green » 13 Feb 2016, 15:46

I await with interest an English (or S African, or Irish) grant of arms on the lines of: Sable, an Orb Sable fimbriated Argent, banded and charged with Plates.

The HTA could huff and puff with LL for all their worth, but there would be nothing he could do about it.
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Re: Harris Tweed

Postby Michael F. McCartney » 13 Feb 2016, 21:55

The HTA can register an additional trademark consisting of their new shield, which would have the same trademark protections overseas as any other trademark - no more, but no less. Whether that would cause the SA or Irish or whatever heralds to reject a petition for a similar grant / confirmation / registration as personal arms, I can't say; but it should bar use in trade in those countries which recognize each other's trademarks.

Also, the publicity and advertising value should be helpful, regardless of legal protection.
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