Arms of Villanueva de los Infantes, Spain

Villanueva de los Infantes

Granted 1421

Blazon: Argent a cross of Santiago gules between in bend two escutcheons or four palets of the second, and in bend sinister a lion rampant of the last and a castle triple-towered of the third windowed azure

There might be a better way to describe the positioning of the charges, but I’m not entirely sure what that would be. I’m hesitant to say they’re laid out in saltire, since most of them are different, and describing the individual position of each charge (eg. in dexter chief, in sinister chief, etc.) seems excessive. I ended up going with the bends because the charges seem to naturally fall into two groups – the lion and castle of Léon and Castile, and the shields of Aragon for Enrique and Alfonso, Infantes of Aragon.

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Arms of Draßburg, Austria

Drassburg

Granted 1998

Blazon: Per fess azure a passion cross or upon a triple mount in base proper and per pale of the first a griffin counter-segreant crowned and bearing a scimitar in the left of the second and in the right three roses gules, slipped and leaved proper, and of the second between a stag’s attires a cross paté of the first.

I don’t have a direct source for the cross, but it seems like a pretty standard thing to put on your municipal arms if you are a small Christian community. However, I do have sources for the base half of the shield. The griffin – crown, scimitar, roses, and all – is taken from the Esterházy arms, which are fucking amazing. I will have to come back to those sometime in the future, because WOW. The Esterházys controlled roughly one-third of the area that currently forms Draßburg from sometime in the 1620s through 1848. Similarly, the other quarter of the shield is derived from the Zichy arms; they controlled the other two-thirds of the area from 1672 to 1715 and from 1795 to 1848. (The Zichys sold the area to the Mesko family in 1715, but after eighty years’ worth of legal proceedings, the Meskos were ordered to give it back.) If you’re wondering what happened in 1848, well… let’s just say the Austrian nobility went into a sharp decline right around then.

Former arms of Reusten, Germany

Reusten

Granted 1954 – 1971

Blazon: Or a bend sinister between in chief a crown gules and in base a linden branch vert

Reusten was situated just south of an old Roman road, which was later called the “King’s Road,” and is the source for the bend sinister and crown. The linden branch is a reference to the Gerichtslinde, or “court linden.” Many Germanic tribes would hold courts and legal assemblies under a large linden tree, usually in open fields. Presumably, Reusten has (or had) a Gerichtslinde, but I can’t verify this. And once again, the or-and-gules combination is derived from the arms of the counts palatine of Tübingen (or a gonfanon gules).

Arms of Drasenhofen, Austria

Drasenhofen

Granted 2001?

Blazon: Per bend or azure an eagle displayed of the last and gules an eagle displayed and crowned argent

Unfortunately, there is not a lot of information out there about these arms. The most useful thing I can do is point to the Fünfkirchen family, who were prominent in the area for several centuries – at least from the mid-fifteenth century through the end of the Habsburg Monarchy in 1804. They bore per pale, per fess argent and azure, and or. This might be the source of the tinctures in the dexter half of the shield, but I have absolutely nothing to back that up.

Former arms of Poltringen, Germany

Poltringen

Granted 1933 – 1971

Blazon: Argent a boar passant sable, armed of the field on a triple mount in base proper, in chief a cinquefoil gules

Both elements of the arms evidently derive from the Counts of Eberstein, an ancient regional family that died out in 1660. The cinquefoil was from their coat of arms (argent a cinquefoil gules seeded azure), and the boar (Eber) is a canting element on their name.

Arms of Villanueva de la Fuente, Spain

Villanueva de la Fuente

Granted 1985

Blazon: Per fess, I per pale argent a cross of Santiago gules and azure a croizer in bend surmounted by a mitre or, II of the last a walled town of the third, pointé in base of the first two bars wavy of the third

Unfortunately, I can’t find any information about these arms, but it’s pretty obvious to me that the base half is canting arms – the name translates to “new town on the river,” and bars wavy are a very traditional method of representing water or rivers. The Order of Santiago did control the town from around 1213 through 1243, which would explain the cross. I’m not entirely sure about the episcopal regalia; it does seem like a bishopric was established in the area under the Visigoths, but I’m not entirely certain about that.

Arms of Dornbirn, Austria

Dornbirn

Initially granted 1655; regranted 1902 and 1929

Blazon: Gules a fess argent, overall a pear tree issuant from a mount in base vert fructed or

Although the name “Dornbirn” doesn’t actually have anything to do with pears (Birnen), the arms are, nonetheless, canting. The municipality became part of the Habsburg possessions in 1380, which they apparently loved so much that when Archduke Ferdinand Charles sold the town to the lords of Ems in 1654, the inhabitants were furious. They refused to acknowledge the Ems as their sovereigns, and promptly raised 4000 guilders (around €47,000 or $52,000 USD) to buy themselves back. Impressed by their loyalty, the Archduke granted the arms above.

However, it might not have been loyalty so much as a deep enmity for Ems; apparently, the lords of that family were really into witch hunts and illegally confiscating property, even more so than most seventeenth-century nobility. After their debt overtook them in the mid-eighteenth century, the inhabitants of Dornbirn proceeded to buy up all of the Ems’ former holdings in the area.