Arms of John Peche


From the Dering Roll (c. 1270-1300)

Blazon: Gules a crescent or, on a chief argent two molets of five points of the field


Arms of the borough of Barnet, London, England


Granted 1965

Blazon: Azure on a mount in base a Paschal lamb proper; on a chief per pale argent and gules a Saxon crown or between two roses counterchanged barbed and seeded proper

Crest: On a wreath of the colors a two-bladed airscrew in pale winged or surmounted by two swords in saltire points upwards proper

Supporters: On the dexter a lion and on the sinister a stag argent charged on the shoulder with a cross potent quadrate gules

Mantling: Azure lined argent

Motto: Unitas efficit ministerium (Unity accomplishes service)

The borough was formed from a combination of other boroughs, most of which are represented in the achievement. The Paschal lamb and the airscrew are from Hendon; the supporters are from Finchley; the crosses potent quadrate are from Friern Barnet. The red and white roses featured in the arms of both Barnet and East Barnet as a reference to the Battle of Barnet from the Wars of the Roses.

There is so much going on here, and I’m not sure any of it is good. Setting aside the fact that it’s basically impossible to make these arms work within the law of tinctures and the completely unnecessary compartment, my biggest complaint has to be the crest. First, that does NOT look like a propeller. I only figured out it’s supposed to be a two-bladed propeller seen from the front from the blazon. That’s not good. Secondly, it’s a fucking propeller. It’s already an allusion to aviation. You don’t need to put fucking wings on it. Third, I’m going to borrow Fox-Davies’ complaint about more modern crests: they were originally intended to be worn on top of a helmet. How the fuck are you supposed to balance that thing on your head? Would it even be identifiable from a distance? This is such a trainwreck, even the counterchanged reference to the Wars of the Roses isn’t enough to save it.

Arms of the House of Boncompagni as Princes of Piombino


In use since 1701?

Blazon: Gules a demi-dragon rampant or, on a chief of the field two keys in saltire, argent and or, surmounted by an umbraculum of the last, all bound in cord azure

In 1701, Gregorio Boncompagni’s marriage to Ippolita Ludovisi allowed him to claim the title Prince of Piombino. It had previously been held by Ippolita’s eldest brother Giovanni and then passed to her elder sister Olimpia when he died in 1699. Olimpia died a year later, and the title passed to her sister, and then by right of marriage, her husband. The Boncompagni-Ludovisi family would retain the principality until the French claimed it in the Battle of Marengo in 1800.

The arms in the chief are those of the Gonfalonier of the Church, though it is not clear when they became associated with the principality. It may have been during the brief window of 1501-1503 when Cesare Borgia briefly controlled the area during his tenure as Gonfalonier.

Arms of Frankenhardt, Germany


Granted 1979

Blazon: Argent a chief dancetty of three argent and as many pine trees eradicated palewise vert

The arms are probably a rough combination of the arms of the three former municipalities incorporated into one in 1974. The three trees feature in the arms of Honhardt, and the red and white color scheme may derive from Oberspeltach’s arms. It is possible, though far from certain, that the dancetty lines are a reference to Gründelhardt’s chevron.

I really like this one, and not just because it’s coincidentally Christmasy. First, I think dancetty lines lend themselves very well to bold, clean shapes, especially when used as a partition line or (as here) with the chief. The original intention of arms was to provide a quick visual shorthand that was easy to make out at a distance, and I think this accomplishes that goal nicely. Extra points for not using the dancetty lines as a stand-in for mountains. I don’t know why that always rubs me the wrong way – maybe because if you want mountains so badly, you can just use mountains – but it does. Second, I just love that the trees line up with the dancetty points – I mean, not that they wouldn’t, since this is really the only placement that makes sense, but I still like it.

Arms of Sleaford Town Council, England


Granted 1950

Blazon: Gules on a chevron or three estoiles sable, on a chief argent as many trefoils slipped vert

Crest: On a wreath gules and or an eagle wings displayed and elevated and head downwards and to the sinister proper holding in the beak an ear of wheat stalked and leaved or

Mantling: Gules lined or

The arms in the primary part of the shield belong to the Carre family, who founded the local almshouse and grammar school, while the trefoils are from the arms of the Harveys. The eagle represents the town’s associations with the Royal Air Force, while the wheat represents local agriculture.

Arms of Newark Town Council, England


Granted 1561

Blazon: Barry wavy of six argent and azure on a chief gules a peacock in his pride proper between a fleur-de-lis on the dexter and a lion passant guardant on the sinister or

Crest: On a wreath argent and azure a morfex* argent beaked sable holding in its beak an eel proper

Supporters: On the dexter, an otter, on the sinister a beaver, all proper

Mantling: Gules lined argent

Motto: Deo fretus erumpe (Trust God and sally)

*The actual identity of this bird is unclear; this spelling does not reliably occur anywhere else. Possibilities include a moorhen, a martlet, a heron, a cormorant, or a grouse. (Campbell, Jillian, and Mike Cox. Secret Newark. Amberly Publishing Limited, 2015. Google Book Search. Web. 10 July 2016.)