HL Larkin O'Kane larkin at
Thu May 14 09:17:23 PDT 1998

On Thu, 14 May 1998 00:37:21 -0500 (CDT), Tim McDaniel <tmcd at>

>On Thu, 14 May 1998, HL Larkin O'Kane <larkin at>
>> I don't understand how these conflict.  There is no visual
>> similarity except for the pale.  One has a field divided -
>> the other has only a field. One has only one color - the
>> other has a color and a metal.  They are not visually
>> similar.
>The SCA College of Arms hasn't done armorial conflict-
>checking based solely on visual similarity since it adopted
>written rules, which I think happened in the early 1980s.

I understand that written rules are necessary :)

>Now we either clear it by Rules for Submission X.1 (addition
>/ deletion of primary charge), X.2 (substantial change of
>type of all primary charges in "simple" cases, where
>"simple" is defined precisely), or by 2 CDs under X.4.
>There *is* a backstop Visual Test, X.5, but it cannot
>*clear* a conflict, it can only be the basis for *calling* a
>conflict.  It's really there just to catch gaps in the
>rules.  I dislike it heartily, because it's impossible for
>us to tell a submitter whether Laurel will call something a
>visual conflict or not.

Perhaps it's time to introduce another gap catching rule that would allow
clearing an item that is very visually dissimilar though not clear by

>In the instant case:
>    Alix Sigri von Ravensburg: Azure, a pale ermine.
>    Frederick of Feoliddwyn: Per chevron sable and argent, a pale ermine.
>Neither X.1 nor X.2 apply, since the two coats in question
>have the same primary charge group.  RfS X.4.a says
>    a.  Field Difference - Significantly changing the
>    tinctures, direction of partition lines, style of
>    partition lines, or number of pieces in a partition of
>    the field is one clear difference.  ...
>    i.  Charged Fields - If charges other than an uncharged
>    peripheral ordinary are present, at most one clear
>    difference may be counted for changes to the field.  ...
>    There is just one clear difference between "Per chevron
>    ermine and azure, a pale gules" and "Per bend wavy Or
>    and vert, a pale gules".
>which is about as close as an example as you can get.
>Therefore, there is only 1 CD between the two coats, so X.4
>does not clear it.  X.3 is irrelevant, X.5 can only create
>conflict, and there are no other ways to clear the two

>Therefore, Asterisk was correct in saying that
>there is conflict because there is only one CD of

Well, let's just say that Asterisk is correct that there is only one CD
of difference.  I still do not see how people would confuse the two items
were they to appear together on the same battlefield.  

O.K.  I believe it's dead horse time. I now understand the reason the
device was rejected and concur that until the rules are changed that said
action is right and proper.

>> >13) Hugh fitz Maynard 
>> > Device – returned for violating a Laurel precedent
>> > from 3/93 indicating that game boards must be drawn as
>> > delfs with the game markings on them rather than as
>> > simply lines on the field (which makes them thin-line
>> > heraldry).
>> I don't understand this. Possibly because I can't find the
>> word "delfs" in my dictionary.  
>A "delf" is a square.  It may be found in the OED (a good
>investment for an SCA herald, tho best if bought as a used
>book in the compact edition, or perhaps on CD).  It may also
>be found in the Pict Dict (which any SCA herald needs to
>get) and in Brooke-Little's _An Heraldic Alphabet_ (a fine
It really never occured to me that it was an heraldic term. I have since
found it in my Pict Dict.  

Is my assumption correct that if the submitter had drawn defts around the
two boards then the submission would not have been returned for thin-line

>RfS X.5: If the tinctures, shapes, or arrangement of the
>    charges in a submission create an overwhelming visual
>    resemblance to a piece of protected armory, the
>    submission may be held to conflict even if sufficient
>    theoretical difference can be counted between them.

Proposal: "If the tinctures, shapes, or arrangement of the charges in a
submission create an overwhelming visual dissilarity to a piece of
protected armory, the submission may be held not to conflict even if
sufficient theoretical difference cannot be counted between them."

Yeah, I know. Between the two of them you might as well throw the other
RfSs down the drain. But still, used judiciously?  
Thanks Daniel, I enjoy your comments

Larkin - If it looks like a duck, walks like a duck and quacks like a
duck let's not say it resembles a condor - O'Kane

As usual. Please take no offense at my postings as none are intended.
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