Escutcheon (heraldry)

Effigy of William Longespée the Younger (d.1250) in Salisbury Cathedral, showing an early triangular heater shield, the shape used as the "canvas" for the display of arms during the classical age of heraldry
Pippa Middleton's coat of arms (granted 2011), based on those of her father. This lozenge shaped version, supported by a blue ribbon, denotes an unmarried woman.
Male (shield-shaped) and female (lozenge-shaped) coats of arms in relief in Southwark, London.
Points of an escutcheon or heraldic shield
Simple example of incorporating an heiress's arms as an escutcheon of pretense
Pelta escutcheon as used in the diplomatic emblem of France
Kite shield, 12th/13th century
"Norman" style, 13th century
"Heater" shape, 13th/14th century
Square ("Old French") shape
"Square Iberian" or Iberian style (square top, rounded base), 15th century<ref>Codex Figdor, Tiroler Landesarchiv, Innsbruck (c. 1400).</ref>
Bouched or bouché side ("German" or "Dutch" style), 15th century.{{efn |text=The gap or bouche represents the opening for the lance in specialised jousting shields, attested (in depictions of actual shields) from the mid 14th century, occasional use as a shape of heraldic escutcheons from the mid-15th century.{{sfn |Grazebrook|1890|loc=p31&ndash;35}}}}
Scroll-eared top, lobed base, 16th century
Square eared, nicked top, rounded base, 16th century
"Wedge" top
"Polish" style, 17th century <ref>{{cite book|title=Nauki Pomocnicze Historii|last= Szymański |first= Józef|orig-year=2001|year=2001|location=Warsaw}}</ref>
Eared top, French base
"French" style, 17th century{{efn|text=Used in the Armorial général de France (1696).<ref>{{cite book |title=Armorial général, ou Registres de la noblesse de France |url=https://archive.org/details/armorialgnralou03hozi/page/406 |last= d'Hozier |first=Louis Pierre |orig-year=1696 |year=1865 |location= Paris |publisher=Firmin Didot |via=Internet Archive}}</ref> The "French" shape of the base is found earlier, in French and English heraldry, from c. 1600 ("Stuart" type).}}
"Cardiodid" shape,{{Example needed|date=September 2021}} 18th century
Two engrailed top, 19th century{{efn|text=called ecu suisse in some French sources of the 19th century,{{citation needed|date=November 2018}} as this shape was used in coats of arms on some coins of the Swiss mediation period (1803&ndash;1815).}}
oval or "Iberian" shape
Lozenge shape (see Lozenge section)
Escutcheons as mobile charges, as borne by the French family of Abbeville.
Inescutcheons for style in the arms of the Swedish Collegium of Arms.
An escutcheon of pretence, as borne by the French family de Champagne-La Suze.
Inherited arms borne en surtout over territorial arms. (Arms of Eric of Pomerania as monarch of the Kalmar Union, c.15th century)

Escutcheon is a shield that forms the main or focal element in an achievement of arms.

- Escutcheon (heraldry)
Effigy of William Longespée the Younger (d.1250) in Salisbury Cathedral, showing an early triangular heater shield, the shape used as the "canvas" for the display of arms during the classical age of heraldry

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Heraldic achievement forming the Garter stall plate of John Beaufort, 1st Duke of Somerset (d. 1444), KG, St. George's Chapel, Windsor. The earliest garter plate with supporters. It includes the badge of an ostrich feather, here shown as a pair, blazoned: feather argent pen gobonne argent and azure

Achievement (heraldry)

Crest placed atop a:

Crest placed atop a:

Heraldic achievement forming the Garter stall plate of John Beaufort, 1st Duke of Somerset (d. 1444), KG, St. George's Chapel, Windsor. The earliest garter plate with supporters. It includes the badge of an ostrich feather, here shown as a pair, blazoned: feather argent pen gobonne argent and azure
Garter stall plate of John Russell, 1st Earl of Bedford (c. 1485–1554/5), installed as a Knight of the Garter 18 May 1539, showing his "achievement", at that time termed "hatchment"

Sometimes the term "coat of arms" is used to refer to the full achievement, but this usage is wrong in the strict sense of heraldic terminology, as a coat of arms refers to a garment with the escutcheon or armorial achievement embroidered on it.

Escutcheon showing Argent, a lozenge gules

Lozenge (heraldry)

Diamond-shaped charge , usually somewhat narrower than it is tall.

Diamond-shaped charge , usually somewhat narrower than it is tall.

Escutcheon showing Argent, a lozenge gules
This Monegasque flag is "lozengy argent and gules"
A variant Flag of Bavaria, an array of 21 or more lozenges bendwise of white and blue (blazoned as a field "fusilly in bend" or sometimes "bendy lozengy").
The personal arms of Margaret of Parma
The arms of Isabella Clara Eugenia of Spain
The personal coat of arms of Anne, Princess Royal displayed on a lozenge.
"Or, a lozenge sable"
Mascles
Fusils
A rustre
A lozengy shield
Arms of Borredà, a municipality in Catalonia
Emblem of Uttarakhand, a state of India

A lozenge shaped escutcheon is used to depict heraldry for a female (in continental Europe especially an unmarried woman), but is also sometimes used as a shape for mural monuments in churches which commemorate females.

Coat of arms of the city of Ghent in the sixteenth century.

Coat of arms

Coat of arms of the city of Ghent in the sixteenth century.
Brabant Lion held by Floris de Merode during the funeral of Albert VII, Archduke of Austria, print after design by Jacob Franquart
The German Hyghalmen Roll, c. late 15th century, illustrates the German practice of thematic repetition from the arms in the crest
Arms of the Duke of Richmond c.1780
Coat of arms of Sir Edward Stanley, 3rd Earl of Derby, KG
Coat of arms of the city of Vaasa, showing the shield with the Royal House of Wasa emblem, a crown and a Cross of Liberty pendant.
Coat of arms of the province of Utrecht, Netherlands
Coat of arms of the Porvoo town
Coat of arms of Liptov County in Slovakia.
The Great Seal of the United States, which displays as its central design the heraldic device of the nation.
The coat of arms of Pope John Paul II displays the papal tiara and crossed keys of the pontifical office.
Imperial Seal of Japan
The Great Seal of the United States, which displays as its central design the heraldic device of the nation.

A coat of arms is a heraldic visual design on an escutcheon (i.e., shield), surcoat, or tabard (the latter two being outer garments).

Zulu chief Goza and two of his councillors in war-dress, all with Nguni shields, c.1870. The size of the shield on the chief's left arm denotes his status, and the white colour that he is a married man.

Shield

Piece of personal armour held in the hand, which may or may not be strapped to the wrist or forearm.

Piece of personal armour held in the hand, which may or may not be strapped to the wrist or forearm.

Zulu chief Goza and two of his councillors in war-dress, all with Nguni shields, c.1870. The size of the shield on the chief's left arm denotes his status, and the white colour that he is a married man.
Wall painting depicting a Mycenaean Greek "figure eight" shield with a suspension strap at the middle, 15th century BC, National Archaeological Museum, Athens -The faces of figure eight shields were quite convex. The cited "strap" may be the ridge on the front (so denoted by the visible pattern of the ox hide) of the shield.
Elaborate and sophisticated shields from the Philippines.
Greek soldiers of Greco-Persian Wars. Left: Greek slinger. Right: hoplites. Middle: hoplite's shield has a curtain which serves as a protection from arrows.
Two wooden round shields survived at Thorsberg moor
Ballistic shield, NIJ Level IIIA
U.S. Navy Special Warfare Combatant-craft Crewmen (SWCC) fire a shield-equipped Minigun
Image from Hatshepsut's expedition to Punt showing Egyptians soldiers with shields (wood/animal skin). 15th century BC. Temple of Hathor Deir el-Bahari
A hoplite by painter Alkimachos, on an Attic red-figure vase, c. 460 BC. Shield has a curtain which serves as a protection from arrows.
Sword and buckler (small shield) combat, plate from the Tacuinum Sanitatis illustrated in Lombardy, ca. 1390.
Drawing from the Codex Manesse showing jousting knights on horseback carrying shields.
Ceremonial shield with mosaic decoration. Aztec or Mixtec, AD 1400-1521 (British Museum).
Australian Aboriginal shield, Royal Albert Memorial Museum.
Nias ceremonial shield.
Hippopotamus Hide Shield from Sudan. Currently housed at Westminster College in New Wilmington, Pennsylvania.
Aboriginal bark shield collected in Botany Bay, New South Wales, during Captain Cook's first voyage in 1770 (British Museum)
Three-lion symbolic shield (under the helmet) in the coat of arms of Tallinn.

The heater style inspired the shape of the symbolic heraldic shield that is still used today.

Impalement in heraldry: on the dexter side of the escutcheon, the position of greatest honour, are placed the arms of the husband (baron), with the paternal arms of the wife (femme) on the sinister.

Impalement (heraldry)

Impalement in heraldry: on the dexter side of the escutcheon, the position of greatest honour, are placed the arms of the husband (baron), with the paternal arms of the wife (femme) on the sinister.
Memorial stone in Kilkenny, Ireland, depicting the family arms separated, and then impaled together on top.
Banner of Cardinal Wolsey as Archbishop of York. His personal arms in sinister (to viewer's right) are impaled with the arms of the See of York in dexter (to viewer's left), the position of honour.
Escutcheon of King Richard II of England impaled by attributed arms of King Edward the Confessor
Arms of Brasenose College, Oxford. The inescutcheon obscures the middle tierce
Arms of Sir Arthur Northcote, 2nd Baronet (1628–1688), detail from ledger stone, King's Nympton Church, Devon, England

In heraldry, impalement is a form of heraldic combination or marshalling of two coats of arms side by side in one divided heraldic shield or escutcheon to denote a union, most often that of a husband and wife, but also for unions of ecclesiastical, academic/civic and mystical natures.

Azure, a bend or. A coat made famous by the medieval court case Scrope v. Grosvenor.

Blazon

Formal description of a coat of arms, flag or similar emblem, from which the reader can reconstruct the appropriate image.

Formal description of a coat of arms, flag or similar emblem, from which the reader can reconstruct the appropriate image.

Azure, a bend or. A coat made famous by the medieval court case Scrope v. Grosvenor.
Party per pale argent and vert, a tree eradicated counterchanged. Arms of Behnsdorf.
Argent, an eagle displayed gules armed and wings charged with trefoils Or. Arms of Brandenburg.
Quarterly 1st and 4th Sable a lion rampant on a canton Argent a cross Gules; 2nd and 3rd quarterly Argent and Gules in the 2nd and 3rd quarters a fret Or overall on a bend Sable three escallops of the first and as an augmentation in chief an inescutcheon, Argent a cross Gules and thereon an inescutcheon Azure, three fleurs-de-lis Or. Arms of Churchill.<ref>Courtenay, P. The Armorial Bearings of Sir Winston Churchill {{webarchive|url=https://web.archive.org/web/20130718222952/http://www.winstonchurchill.org/learn/reference/armorial-bearings-of-wsc |date=2013-07-18 }}. The Churchill Centre.</ref>
Arms of Brittany
Arms of Östergötland
Arms of Hungary (1867)

For example, the shape of the escutcheon is almost always immaterial, with very limited exceptions (e.g., the coat of arms of Nunavut, for which a round shield is specified).

A basic diagram of a typical shield parted quarterly

Quartering (heraldry)

A basic diagram of a typical shield parted quarterly
Example of the simplest case of quartering two coats of arms
The 719 quarterings of George, Marquess of Buckingham
Simple quartering, crudely drawn. De Salis quartered with Fane.
The flag of Maryland has a quartering of the coats of arms of the Calvert and Crossland families

Quartering in is a method of joining several different coats of arms together in one shield by dividing the shield into equal parts and placing different coats of arms in each division.

The German Hyghalmen Roll was made in the late 15th century and illustrates the German practice of repeating themes from the arms in the crest. (See Roll of arms).

Heraldry

Discipline relating to the design, display and study of armorial bearings , as well as related disciplines, such as vexillology, together with the study of ceremony, rank and pedigree.

Discipline relating to the design, display and study of armorial bearings , as well as related disciplines, such as vexillology, together with the study of ceremony, rank and pedigree.

The German Hyghalmen Roll was made in the late 15th century and illustrates the German practice of repeating themes from the arms in the crest. (See Roll of arms).
Enamel from the tomb of Geoffrey Plantagenet, Count of Anjou, one of the earliest depictions of modern heraldry.
Two pursuivants wearing tabards, Windsor Castle, 2006.
A shield parted per pale and per fir twig fess. Coat of arms of former Finnish municipality of Varpaisjärvi.
An extravagant example of marshalling: the 719 quarterings of the Grenville Armorial at Stowe House
German heraldry has examples of shields with numerous crests, as this arms of Saxe-Altenburg featuring a total of seven crests. Some thaler coins display as many as fifteen.
Flags as supporters and orders in the armory of the Prince of Vergara.
The coat of arms of Mikkeli, a city of South Savonia, Finland, has been drawn up in honour of the headquarters of the Finnish Army led by Marshal C. G. E. Mannerheim; this was stationed in the city during the Winter War, the Continuation War and the Lapland War. The coat of arms was originally used without the Mannerheim Cross, and is the third coat of arms affixed to the city.
Coat of Arms of the Turiec county in Slovakia.
State Emblem of the Soviet Union (1956-1991 version)
Arms created in 1977, featuring a hydrocarbon molecule
Military coat of arms, depicting a red locomotive.
Reverse of the Narmer Palette, circa 3100 BC. The top row depicts four men carrying standards.  Directly above them is a serekh containing the name of the king, Narmer.
Fresco depicting a shield of a type common in Mycenaean Greece.
Vase with Greek soldiers in armor, circa 550 BC.
A reconstruction of a shield that would have been carried by a Roman Legionary.
Shields from the "Magister Militum Praesentalis II". From the Notitia Dignitatum, a medieval copy of a Late Roman register of military commands.
The death of King Harold, from the Bayeux Tapestry. The shields look heraldic, but do not seem to have been personal or hereditary emblems.

The achievement, or armorial bearings usually includes a coat of arms on a shield, helmet and crest, together with any accompanying devices, such as supporters, badges, heraldic banners and mottoes.

Chief

Charge (heraldry)

Chief
Bend
Pale
Fess
Chevron
Cross
Saltire
Pall
Pile
Pile reversed
Quarter
Canton
Bordure
Orle
Base
Fret
Flaunches
Label
Gyron
Inescutcheon
Lozenge
Three mascles
Rustre
Six billets
Three bezants
Fountain
Three annulets
Star and crescent
Five mullets pierced
cross botonny
cross crosslet
cross flory
Maltese cross
cross moline
cross patée
cross patonce
cross potent
Human man
Angel
Angel slaying Demon
Moor
Biscione
Knight
Knight on horse
King
Clergy Member
Lion rampant
Two lions passant
Eagle displayed
Swan gorged with a coronet
Three salmon naiant
Six martlets
Unicorn
Griffin segreant
"Sea lion" with sword
Salamander crowned
Hart's head cabossed
Three leopard's faces
Fox's mask
Boar's head erased
Bull's head couped
Tree fructed and eradicated
Fleur-de-lis
Heraldic rose
Three trefoils
"Vasa"
Three maple leaves
Anchor
Book with letters
Chess rook
Three clarions
Crown
Escarbuncle
Estoile
Fasces
Harp
Keys addorsed
Lymphad
Maunch
Moon in her plenitude
Portcullis
Snow crystal
Spur
Sun in his splendour
Sword
Tower on a mount
Wheel

In heraldry, a charge is any emblem or device occupying the field of an escutcheon (shield).

Charges used as marks of cadency in English heraldry: 1: label of three points; 2: crescent; 3: mullet; 4: martlet; 5: annulet; 6: fleur-de-lys; 7: rose; 8: cross moline; 9: octofoil

Cadency

Any systematic way to distinguish arms displayed by descendants of the holder of a coat of arms when those family members have not been granted arms in their own right.

Any systematic way to distinguish arms displayed by descendants of the holder of a coat of arms when those family members have not been granted arms in their own right.

Charges used as marks of cadency in English heraldry: 1: label of three points; 2: crescent; 3: mullet; 4: martlet; 5: annulet; 6: fleur-de-lys; 7: rose; 8: cross moline; 9: octofoil
Differencing system in Scottish heraldry
Arms of The Queen
'''Arms of The Queen (in right of Scotland)
Arms of the Prince of Wales
Arms of the Prince of Wales (in right of Scotland, as Duke of Rothesay)
Arms of the Duke of Cambridge
Arms of the Duke of Sussex
Arms of the Duke of York
Arms of Princess Beatrice
Arms of Princess Eugenie
Arms of the Earl of Wessex
Arms of the Princess Royal
Arms of the Duke of Gloucester
Arms of the Duke of Kent
Arms of Prince Michael
Arms of Princess Alexandra
Arms of the King of the Netherlands
Juliana of the Netherlands & Oranje-Nassau Personal Arms, (escutcheon of Mecklenburg)
Arms of the children of Juliana of the Netherlands, Beatrix of the Netherlands & Oranje-Nassau and her sisters Princess Irene, Princess Margriet and Princess Christina (escutcheon of Lippe)
Arms of the children of Beatrix of the Netherlands, currently used by Prince Constantijn, brother of the King, and his children. These arms were borne by the King before his accession and also by Prince Friso, the King's other, late brother, before his marriage. (escutcheon of Amsberg)
Arms for the children of King William Alexander of the Netherlands, Catharina-Amalia, Princess of Orange, Princess Ariane and Princess Alexia (escutcheon of Zorreguieta).
Arms for the children of Princess Margriet of the Netherlands, Prince Maurits, Prince Bernhard, Prince Pieter-Christiaan and Prince Floris of Orange-Nassau, van Vollenhoven (escutcheon of Van Vollenhoven). <ref>{{Cite web | last = Klaas | title = Maurits van Vollenhoven | work = Article on Maurits van Vollenhoven, 18-09-2008 10:28| publisher = klaas.punt.nl| url = http://klaas.punt.nl/content/2008/09/maurits-van-vollenhoven| access-date = 4 April 2013}}</ref>

However, if the woman happens to be a heraldic heiress, her father's arms are borne on an inescutcheon on her husband's arms.