Category: English

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The Arms of the Florentine Republic in the “Bossolo” (End XIV s.): An Ideal Self-Representation of the Town

In “Florence and its Signs: A Late Mediaeval Diagram of the City”, Anna Pomierny Wąsińska described a fresco painted by Jacopo di Cione on the main vault of the Palace of the Judges’ and Notaries’ Florentine Guild (about 1360)1. She pointed out the close relation between the heraldic signs with an ideal ‘diagram’ of the town, formed of concentric circles and conceived as a «peculiar visual political treatise, which legitimises...

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The Bavarian Charlemagne: Communicating through attributed coats of arms

The series of Bavarian princes in a late 15th-century manuscript contains an interesting coat of arms attributed to Charlemagne. It differs slightly from the common design of his arms. This subtle variation can open a door to more insights into the function of coats of arms as a performative means of communication. Charlemagne’s arms This coat of arms of Charlemagne consists of three elements: per pale, the dexter half Or, a double-headed...

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Florence and its Signs: A Late Mediaeval Diagram of the City

In the 1360s the abstract portrayal of Florence was painted by Jacopo di Cione on the main vault of the Palace of the Judges’ and Notaries’ Guild[i]. This heraldic diagram is a peculiar visual political treatise, which legitimises the hierarchy of communities and the city’s political system. To this end, an unusual synthesis of knowledge was used, merging aspects of perception of the communal law, relevant political treatises and,...

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New manuscripts added to Digitised Armorials list

We are continiously updating our Digitised Armorials list. This week, we have added 19 armorials to the overview. This includes well-known armorials, such as the Weingartner Liederhandschrift and the Livro do Armeiro-Mor , but also less-studied manuscripts from the fourteenth, fifteenth and sixteenth centuries. Below is an overview of these recently added armorials with links to the webpages with the digital scans. Your help has been important for finding a large...

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Recent Publications – Update July 2016

A new update in our recent publications section. Sometimes it is hard to keep track of all the articles that appear in different magazines and books that are published in different languages and regions. Therefore we provide a list of recent publications in English, German and French, so you can get an overview of the latest interesting heraldic reads. This list contains publications on heraldry that have been published since...

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The Heraldry of the Weavers’ Guild of Augsburg: Mythical Origins and Everyday Display of Corporate Heraldry in Clemens Jäger’s ‘Weberchronik’

Clemens Jäger’s Weberchronik [1], a sixteenth-century chronicle dedicated to the history of the weavers’ guild of Augsburg, is a formidable example to demonstrate how urban chronicles can be used to analyse the importance of heraldry in urban society, especially in terms of coats of arms as an element of civic identity and collective representation. In this blog post, I am not so much interested in the heraldic illuminations that...

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Heraldry as a Systematic and International Language? About the Limitations of Blazonry in Describing Coats of Arms

Usually, this blog is dedicated to approaches to heraldic sources from the perspective of cultural history. To the contrary, this post will deal with one of the central subjects of heraldry as an auxiliary science: blazoning. However, I do think that this does preclude interesting insights also from the perspective of cultural studies, since I am convinced that heraldry as such can also be studied from this perspective. As...

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The material of the Berry armorial

This is the second post in the series on armorials, in which each time a manuscript from the digitized armorials list will be highlighted (click here for the list). The armorial will not be treated in full, but specific aspects, problems or ideas will be discussed. Your thoughts on these issues are valuable and therefore you are more than welcome to share your ideas and comments.   Paris, BnF,...

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[Report:] Heraldry in Medieval and Early Modern State-Rooms, Münster 16-18 March

On 16-18 March 2016 the workshop Heraldry in Medieval and Early Modern State-Rooms took place in Münster. The origins of this workshop lay in the challenges of understanding the function of the heraldic display in one particular state-room: the sala dos brasões of the National Palace in Sintra, Portugal, dating from the early sixteenth century. The ceiling of this hall presents the coats of arms of the Portuguese royal...

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[Project:] Heraldry, politics and art: The Order of the Golden Fleece

PhD thesis drs. Marjolijn Kruip, Radboud University Nijmegen, department of Art History   The Order of the Golden Fleece In 1430 the Burgundian duke Philip the Good founded the Order of the Golden Fleece to promote and defend Christianity. This knightly order also institutionalised the duke’s aims in being a Christian ruler (a king) in an expanding Christian domain, e.g. by planning a new crusade. The Order of the...

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[Paper:] Ambiguous Arms – Difficulties of Reading and Interpreting Heraldic Programmes in Medieval Austrian Wall Paintings (Andreas Zajic)

The paper focusses on the problem of a sound interpretation of the puzzling late 13th century armorial paintings in the Great Hall of the so-called Gozzoburg in Krems (Lower Austria) and contrasts them to less enigmatic heraldic programmes featured in other Austrian castles, visualising aristocratic kinship bonds, ties of fealty or more complex relations between noble patrons and their clients. Andreas Zajic heads the Division of Text Edition and...

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[Paper:] The Gothic Drawing Room of Eastnor Castle, Herefordshire. A.W.N. Pugins reception of a medieval interior (Judith Berger)

The United Kingdom possesses numerous seigneurial estates, which form an all-encompassing network and serve as control as well as administrative tool of the monarchy. Their owners use them for their political ascent, the legitimization of their power, and utilize them as symbols of political, social and later economic power. Eastnor Castle, Herefordshire, combines all of these features. Furthermore, the design of its interiors proceeds with this symbolism. Not the...