ANST - New Question

Timothy A. McDaniel tmcd at
Thu Aug 14 15:51:31 PDT 1997

Galen of Bristol wrote:
> My arms are a pretty good example of the heraldic concepts of
> balance and simplicity, except that I have a bend between 2 unlike
> charges.  I should have put the bend between 2 axes, instead of
> between an axe and a compass star.

If I may give advice on the subject?

I don't have frequency counts to hand for "bend between 2" versus
"bend between 6" versus "bend between 3" in period armory.  My
recollection of early Anglo-Norman style (which is close to the
mainstream in all of period -- "the founder effect") is that "a bend
between 6" is the most common pattern.  It is also rarely used in the
SCA -- and "period and distinctive" is a nice result, I think.  A semy
of charges (some unknown number strewn on the field) is also
under-represented in the SCA, though it can be a pain to draw.

A bend is commendable.  A lot of SCA people have put charges facing
"to sinister", the viewer's right, which was at best rare in period
though registerable in the SCA.

Axes weren't common charges (but compass stars were entirely unknown;
in armory, they are an invention of the SCA).  Common charges include
crosses of various types, crescents (almost always with the horns
pointing up), mullets (5- or 6- pointed stars), escallops (seashells,
as on the Shell Oil logo), lions, eagles, lozenges (diamonds), ... I'm
sure I'm missing half a dozen common ones.

Another possibility is putting a single charge underneath and putting
the bend "overall", or partly covering it.  SCA practice is usually to
put the simple geometric charge (bend, fess, pale, whatever)
underneath and put some charge over it (lion, dragon, whatever).  In
period, the simple geometric was usually over something else, often
more complex.  Unfortunately, the modern use of a slash overhead
(especially a red \) to mean "not" can interfere with the enjoyment of
the arms.

Anyway, those are some ideas that come to mind about things that were
more common in period armory than in the SCA.

Daniel "will consult on armory for food" de Lincoln
Tim McDaniel.   Reply to tmcd at
tmcd at is not a valid address.

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