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A transcript of the book A Grammar of English Heraldry, chapter 12



THEY who would pursue further the lines followed in this little book cannot do better than consult for themselves the original documents mentioned therein.

Heraldic seals, with heraldry in architecture and on monuments and in painted glass, come first as objects of study, but with them must be read the texts of the rolls of arms and of the earlier grants.

A good field for beginning the study of heraldic seals will be found in the series appended to the Barons' Letter of 1300-1, facsimiles of which were published in 1904 by the late Mr Joseph Forster in Some Feudal Lords and their Seals MCCCI , and with more scholarly descriptions in vols, VI. VII. and VIII. of The Ancestor .

Of the rolls of arms, the texts of a large number have been published. Of those already referred to, the Great Roll is the most important; it has been printed by Sir N. H. Nicolas, and again in the appendix to Parliamentary Writs edited for the Record Commissioners by Sir F. Palgrave.

A fifteenth century pictorial roll of interest, with many curious arms, was printed by instalments, with proper descriptions, by Mr Oswald Barron in vols. III. IV. V. VII. and IX. of The Ancestor ; and in vols. XI. and XII. is a transcript of Thomas Wall's important Book of Crests.

In the same publication (vols. VIII. IX. and X.), in a series of papers by Mr W. Paley Baildon entitled "Heralds' College and Prescription," will be found much useful information, with texts, on early grants of arms.

So many of the books that have been written about heraldry and matters heraldic have now become obsolete that it is difficult to point to such as may be consulted with profit by the student.

Quite a substantial bibliography, Moule's Bibliotheca Heraldica Magnæ Britanniæ , was published so far back as 1822, and the further output of the last ninety years has been quite as voluminous. A later bibliography is given in The Glossary of Heraldry published at Oxford in 1846, which will likewise be found useful in explaining the many extraordinary terms that have been invented by the heralds. The Heraldry Historical and Popular and the smaller English Heraldry of the Rev. C. Boutell represent meritorious efforts to make the subject better known; and the more recent Heraldry British and Foreign by the Rev. Dr Woodward and the same writer's Ecclesiastical Heraldry are the most comprehensive modern treatises on the older lines.

During the last few years the study of heraldry has received a fresh impulse owing to the appeal to its first principles. A helpful paper by Mr Oswald Barron on "Heraldry Revived" is printed in the first volume of The Ancestor , and attention may also be called to the same writer's admirable article on Heraldry in the new (eleventh) edition of the Encyclopaedia Britannica .

For those who find pictorial heraldry of assistance it may perhaps be pardonable to refer to the volume of coloured facsimiles of the early stall-plates of the Knights of the Garter published by the writer of the present manual in 1901, and to his volume on Heraldry for Craftsmen and Designers lately added to Mr Hogg's "Artistic Crafts Series of Technical Handbooks."

Fig. 164. Quartered shield, with a scutcheon of pretence, of the arms
of Francis lord Lovel, K.G., c. 1483, from his stall-plate
(From Hope's Stall-plates of the Knights of the Garter )