Minutes of the September, 2012 Heralds Meeting

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The meeting was held on Sunday, 23 September 2012, in Stockton. The meeting started at XXPM and ended at XXPM. In attendance at this meeting were: (?).

Due to some difficulties involving transfer of files and paperwork during the changover of the Matins Office, some information may be missing from the this month's Minutes. We hope to have all this straightened out soon. Apologies ...

Remaining 2012 meetings have been scheduled as follows: October 21, and November 11. There is no meeting scheduled for December 2012; the January 2013 meeting will be held the Sunday of 12th Night, as usual.

Starting time: As my father has started holding Quaker meetings for worship in our home some Sunday mornings, heraldry meetings will now start at 1:00 PM in order to avoid conflict. Please do not arrive before 12:30 PM.

PLEASE NOTE: For the present, the regular meetings are now taking place in Stockton at the home of Owen ap Morgan, Matins Herald:

2023 Oak Branch Dr
Stockton, CA 95205
(209) 463-6861 (message)
THIS IS SOON TO CHANGE, as the Matins office will be changing hands. Contact Owen for directions. The drive is approximately an hour from Sacramento and an hour and a half from either Berkeley or San Jose via Livermore.

Walk-in submissions will be held over until the following month unless they arrive early enough to be processed in before the scheduled start of the meeting. This policy is subject to change when the new Matins takes over.

We are conducting some preliminary name research through the West Kingdom heraldic consultation mailing list wkheralds_consults@yahoogroups.com . This list is open to all those interested in West Kingdom book heraldry: both names and devices, and either to contribute or to ask questions. To join the list, please subscribe through Yahoo or at wkheralds_consults-subscribe@yahoogroups.com. If you subscribe by e-mail, you can complete the process by replying to the confirmation e-mail; it is not necessary to log in to Yahoo. Please note that initial posts are moderated and thus may not appear on the list immediately.



See Note at top of these minutes ...


The next Known World Heralds and Scribes Symposium will be held in the Barony of Bjornsborg in the Kingdom of Ansteorra (San Antonio, Texas) on June 28-30, 2013. More information to follow.


VOICE HERALDRY: Greencloak will continue to hold voice heraldry training sessions at the beginning of events to encourage involvement at the event.

MAILING LIST: The West Kingdom College of Heralds has a mailing list for internal communication. Any herald is welcome to join by request. To join the list, please subscribe at wkheralds-subscribe@yahoogroups.com.

ELECTRONIC RESOURCES: Many interesting heraldic links can be found through the SCA Heraldry web page at http://www.sca.org/heraldry, including the Laurel home page, the on-line Armorial and Ordinary (with search capabilities) and The Academy of St. Gabriel (an onomastic and heraldic consultation service). The West Kingdom Heraldry site and the West Kingdom Awards List can be accessed through the West Kingdom site, http://www.westkingdom.org. Heraldic queries may also be addressed to Moira at herald@westkingdom.org -- answers may take a few days.

West Kingdom College of Heralds Minutes are published on the web. They may be read at or printed from the heralds' website at http://heralds.westkingdom.org/Minutes.htm. There is a colored version and a printer-friendly black and white version available.

These meetings comment on heraldic submissions from other Kingdoms. The meetings are held most Mondays at 7:00 pm at 4317 Alderwood Way, Sacramento, CA 95864. Call Gwenhwyfaer ferch Gwilym (Brachet) for more information, (916) 323-4268 or email her, .

These meetings comment on heraldic submissions from other Kingdoms. Please consider attending – you do not have to be able to attend every week. They are a fast way to learn how the Rules of Submission work and how to research armory. These meetings have changed location and are now in Walnut Creek on Wednesday nights. If you are interested, contact the Latimer Herald, Astriđ of Swansvale (Gretchen Lebednik) at .


The cover letters, acceptances and returns for the past can be found at http://www.sca.org/heraldry/loar/. If you are interested in responding to some of the calls for commentary put out by the Laurel Sovereign of Arms, please be sure to visit the site.


Cover letter

From Pelican: Legal Name Attestation

This month questions were asked about how heralds may attest that they have seen legal identification for the legal name allowance. Let me begin by saying that for most submissions, we expect photocopies of the submitter's identification. Attestation should be used only at locations where photocopies cannot be easily made (like camping events) or where making photocopies is prohibited by law.

Where photocopies cannot easily be made, heralds may attest that they have seen the identification. Such attestation must include the following: the type of identification, the complete name exactly as it appears on the identification (for example noting that the name is rendered completely in capital letters), the names and titles of two heralds who have seen the identification (herald/pursuivant at large is a title), and the signature or initials of those heralds. If signatures cannot be obtained, the herald may confirm that he or she has seen the documentation in commentary (internal or external - in the case of internal commentary the Letter of Intent should note that it was confirmed). At a local event where only a single herald is available, another officer (seneschal, for example) can serve as a second witness. An attestation that fails this standard will not be considered adequate documentation for a name element that depends on the legal name allowance.

From Pelican: Registerability of Matronymic Bynames in Gaelic

One big change between the Rules for Submissions and the Standards for Evaluation is the removal of the idea of steps from period practice for names. Most steps from period practice were lingual and temporal mixes, which are dealt with in a completely different way under the Standards. However, there are a few other naming practices that are a step from period practice. They will be either allowed or forbidden on a case by case basis.

This month, a name pattern that was ruled a step from period practice has come up: the use of matronymics (names derived from the mother's name) in Gaelic. Should such bynames be allowed under the Standards for Evaluation? In discussing this, there are several pieces of data you might look at. The data that we have for matronymics in Gaelic is summarized at Mari Elspeth nic Bryan's "Index of Names in Irish Annals: Matronymic Bynames" (http://medievalscotland.org/kmo/AnnalsIndex/Matronymic.shtml). We also have a great deal more data from Anglicized forms of Gaelic names than we did when that ruling was made in 2003; a great deal of it can be found at Mari ingen Briain meic Donnchada's "Names Found in Anglicized Irish Documents" at http://medievalscotland.org/kmo/AnglicizedIrish/. I'd be interested in any data that sheds further light on this subject.

From Wreath: On Abacuses

A submission this month led to a discussion of period European and non-European abacuses. The European abacus, from Roman times through the end of our period, used grooves or lines drawn on a board, with counters placed in the grooves or simply on the lines. As a European artifact, this will be our default in the Society. The Oriental abacus, either Chinese or Japanese, used beads strung on a wire. While no evidence of its use in Europe has been presented, either in armory or in art of the period, it is similar enough in function and form to the European version, and there was enough contact between the East and the West that it is plausible that its existence was known. Therefore, as a non-European artifact, its use will be deemed a step from period practice.

From Wreath: Revisiting Brown Animals Proper

Precedent set on the October 1995 Cover Letter states:

PRECEDENT: Henceforward, and more in line with period heraldic practice, animals which are normally brown may be registered simply as an {X} proper (e.g., boar proper, hare proper). Animals which are frequently found as brown but also commonly appear in other tinctures in the natural world may be registered as a brown {X} proper (e.g., brown hound proper, brown horse proper).

This precedent does not, however, loosen the ban on "Linnaean proper" (Cover Letter, May 13, 1991); proper tinctures for flora and fauna which require the Linnaean genus and species to know how to color them. For example, a falcon proper will be considered to be all brown, not brown head, wings and back, buff breast with darker spots, and a tail striped with black; a hare proper will be considered to be all brown, not brown with white underbelly and tail and pink ears. This also appears to be more in keeping with period heraldic practice.

We feel this is too strict. While many brown animals proper in period heraldry are indeed tinctured solidly brown, others have minor details tinctured differently. We see no reason that minor artistic details of a brown proper charge may not be tinctured differently in the same manner as details on a non-proper charge would be. For example, a brown bear proper may be armed and langued gules, just as a bear sable might be.

Therefore, a brown X proper may have minor artistic details in another tincture, as long as the charge retains identifiability and does not encroach upon the ban on "Linnaen proper" for being too naturalistic.

West Kingdom acceptances

Alice Elizabeth Wycliffe. Name.

Kenneth Haldane. Name and device. Vert, a chevron embattled ermine and in chief two falcons striking respectant argent.

Margery Garret. Device change. Per fess embattled sable mullety argent and gules, in base a bee argent marked sable.

Her previous device, Per fess embattled sable mullety argent and gules, in base a crescent argent, is released.

Maria Clara de Madrid. Name and device. Sable, a Latin cross flory and in chief three cinquefoils Or.

Nice device!

Ragnarr inn hávi. Device. Vert, a wolf rampant argent within a serpent involved Or, a bordure embattled argent.

Sedania de Corwyn. Badge change. Vert, a thistle Or and a bordure ermine.

Her previous badge, Vert, on a fess between three thistles Or, a griffin statant sable, is released.

Nice badge!

Valeria Eberhardt. Name change from Sophie Hebenstreit.

Eastern Crown was able to date Valeria in German-context Switzerland to 1577 and 1500, making this name wholly German.

The submitter's previous name, Sophie Hebenstreit, is released.

William atte Walter de Liverpoole. Device. Argent, a cross gules surmounted by a cormorant rising, a chief embattled sable.

Please advise the submitter to draw internal detailing on the cormorant. Also, please advise the submitter that the cross should ideally be centered on the field visible below the chief.

Wolfgang Rotkopf. Reblazon of device. Or, an Oriental abacus sable, a chief rayonny gules.

Blazoned when registered in July 1990 as Or, an abacus sable, a chief rayonny gules, we are clarifying the type of abacus.

Wolfgang Rotkopf. Reblazon of badge. (Fieldless) An Oriental abacus sable.

Blazoned when registered in March 1995 as (Fieldless) An abacus sable, we are clarifying the type of abacus.

West returns


In Service,
Owen ap Morgan
Matins Herald

SUBMISSONS – 23 September, XLVII (2012)


Clotilde d'Avignon - New name (see Returns for device)
Allows all changes, prefers language/culture (unspecified), wants a female name, requests authenticity for "14th century France".

Clotilde is stated to be the French spelling of the name of Saint Clotilda (c.474-545), wife of King Clovis I of France, by the web site CATHOLIC ENCYCLOPEDIA:St. Clotilda at http://www.newadvent.org/cathen/04066a.htm. While we have no specific information regarding her veneration during the later Middle Ages, she continued to be honored in France much later: The Basilique Ste-Clotilde was consecrated in Paris in 1857 according to http://www.sacred-destinations.com/france/paris-ste-clotilde.htm.

d'Avignon is a French locative byname. According to St. Gabriel report #2970 at http://www.panix.com/~gabriel/public-bin/showfinal.cgi?2970+0 the spelling Avignon is found in Occitan literature of the 13th C, citing

[16] Flutre, Louis-Fernand, _Table des noms propres avec toutes leurs variantes, figurant dans les romans du Moyen Age e/crits en franc,ais ou en provenc,al et actuellement publie/s ou analyse/s_ (Poitiers: Centre d'e/tudes supe/rieures de civilisation me/die/vale, 1962). s.n. Avignon

[17] Chambers, Frank M., _Proper Names in the Lyrics of the Troubadours_ (Chapel Hill: University of North Carolina Press, 1971). s.n. Avinho.

While this should make the name registerable as submitted, it does not specifically establish it as authentic for 14th C France. We request the assistance of the College of Arms as to whether that can be accomplished.

James Bacon - New name and device

Purpure, a polypus between three roundels argent.
Allows all changes, prefers meaning (unspecified) and sound (unspecified), wants a female name.

James was at least on occasion used as a feminine English given name. Withycombe (s.n. Jacoba) cites a 14th C reference to "Sir Alan [Clavering] and James his wife".

Bacon is an English surname. Reaney & Wilson (s.n. Bacon) attest a Geoffrey Bacon from 1296.

The submitter terms the central charge a kraken but precedent has discarded that term in blazon, preferring polypus for this representation. While the overlapping of the arms is not ideal, we felt is was readily recognizable (albeit as an octopus to the majority of viewers.)

Patricia Blakethorn - New name (see Returns for device) Allows minor changes, prefers language/culture (unspecified), wants a female name.

Patricia is a feminine English given name from the late 16th C. IGI records show:
Patricia SpechleyFemalebaptism/christening:04 Sep 1590 Fiskerton, Lincoln, Englandbatch number: C02827-3origin: England-ODM source film number: 1450401 IT 3
Patricia Slat.marriage:02 Dec 1588 Garboldisham, Norfolk, Englandbatch number: I07402-8 origin: England-EASysource film number: 1702622
Patricia Sandermarriage:08 Nov 1583 West Tarring, Sussex, Englandbatch number: I00539-4 origin: England-EASysource film number: 2147007
Patricia AkresFemaleburial:23 Dec 1588 Sutton-St. James, Lincoln, Englandbatch number: B03193-3 origin: England-EASysource film number: 1542151

Blakethorn is an English locative surname. Reaney & Wilson (s.n. Blackthorn) attest a John Blakethorn from 1379.

Sadb ingen Aedáin - Device resub to kingdom (May 2012)

Sable, a female centaur passant guardant maintaining a spear between three estoiles argent.
The previous version was returned for trian aspect rotation of the head and torso. That issue has been remedied. The submitter notes specifically that the spear is maintained in the left hand, but we see no need for that detail to be blazoned.


Andre la Flamme - New name change to Kage Tatsu Kimotsuki

The documentation presented misrepresents the contents of Solveig Throndardottir's book Name Construction in Mediaeval Japan, and in any case does not justify the name order in the construction here. Kage and Tatsu are not cited as names in and of themselves, but only kanji which are found as parts of names. As such, this submission lacks any documented given name. The rules require a given name.

Kimotsuki is attested in Solveig's book as a Japanese surname from 1392, but Japanese name construction would put it before the given name, not after.

The submitter was made aware of these issues prior to the meeting, but has not yet addressed them. The submission cannot proceed until he does.

Clotilde d'Avignon - New device

Argent, a ragged staff bendwise proper issuing to sinister chief the brown slips of three roses purpure, barbed and seeded proper, a bordure vert.
Presented by the submitter as a rose tree branch proper, we do not believe that adequately describes the emblazon. Neither could the meeting devise a blazon we considered likely to reproduce this emblazon. The flowers are a bit too large to be insignificant blossoms on a primary branch, but the physical connection to the branch prevents describing them otherwise.

This is returned primarily to clarify what the submitter intends for the device and to see whether that can be accomplished in a manner more amenable to heraldic description.

Patricia Blakethorn - New device

Per pale sable and argent, two harts combattant counterchanged each gorged of a county coronet vert and a rose barbed and seeded proper, a chief embattled vert.
There are at least two problems with this device: The chief is far too small, and the complexity is too high (five tinctures and four types of charge when all the details are included.) The size of the stags and the rose also crowds them together more than the meeting found comfortable.

It appears that the device could pass even in a far simpler form, which would cure the complexity issue. If the chief is kept, then in order to guarantee adequate size for it (at least 1/5 the total height of the shield, with deeper embattlements making the crenellations roughly square) the submitter is advised to draw it first and then fit the other charges beneath it.

We also note that the submission forms were printed slightly less than full size. While they might be marginally acceptable, please avoid this in resubmitting.

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