Blazon: Per quarterly I and IV o five torteaux in orle, in chief a roundel of France (Medici), II and III gules a fess argent (Austria)
These are Marie’s arms from before her marriage. In a classic example of quartering, the first and fourth quarters display the arms of her father, Francesco I de’Medici, Grand Duke of Tuscany, while the second and third come from her mother, Archduchess Joanna of Austria. Since both parents were armigers, all of their children would have been entitled to bear their arms quartered. Upon marrying King Henry IV of France, she would have quartered his arms in the first and fourth quarters with the above arms in the second and third.
Blazon: Or five torteaux in orle, in chief a roundel of France
In 1465, King Louis XI of France granted Piero di Cosimo de’Medici (also known as Piero the Gouty) the right to bear a roundel of France as part of the family arms. The grant was apparently made out of respect for the family’s financial acumen rather than as a sign of political or familial affiliation. The Medici continued to bear these arms until they went extinct in 1737, when Gian Gastone de’Medici, Grand Duke of Tuscany, died without issue.
*Positioning of the torteaux seems to have been flexible; various depictions show them as 3, 3, and 2 or 1, 3, 3, and 1.
The alleged origin stories of the Medici arms are as entertaining as they are varied. One holds that one of the Medici ancestors was ennobled by Charlemagne after defeating a giant, and the torteaux represent the dents left on his shield. Another ties the arms to the family name; “medici” means “doctor,” so this theory holds that they represent pills or glasses. A more boring, but more realistic, hypothesis points out that the arms of the Moneychanger’s Guild are gules bezanté; the Medicis may simply have swapped the tinctures.
Blazon: Lozengy argent and sable, on a chief or an annulet of the second between two torteaux
Crest: On a wreath or and gules in front of a wheel issuant therefrom a mount sable lozengy argent rising therefrom in its flames a phoenix proper
Mantling: Gules lined or
Motto: We seek the best
The annulet is derived from the Plumtree arms, and the torteaux from the Greys of Codnor. The black diamonds and the flames in the crest are intended to symbolize coal mining and the energy derived from it. The wheel is a reference to the town’s history with the Midland Counties Railway, which was initiated in Eastwood in 1832.