ANSTHRLD - Heraldic Regalia tmcd at
Sat Jan 22 12:08:33 PST 2000

On Sat, 22 Jan 2000, Paul Mitchell <pmitchel at> wrote:
> But long ago I saw (perhaps in Meridies) a list of regalia, specific
> to ranks (pursuivants extraordinary could wear one kind of tabard,
> pursuivants another, titled heralds could wear one sort of cloak,
> something more elaborate was reserved to Principal Heralds,
> restrictions on staffs or batons, etc.).  Is any of this still in
> force?  Does any of it survive as tradition?

That was a Laurel ruling, I think back in the 80s.  I suspect that
today's Laurel and College of Arms would regret it had ever been

In period terms, what I know of for heralds' regalia are:

- Tabards, with the arms of the sponsoring noble front, back, and on
  both sleeves.  The crossed-trumpets business I hold to be an
  abomination before the Lord.

- Wands.  There's been a recent discussion in SCA Heralds' about this,
  with the Subject line of "Herald's staves"

    Date:         Thu, 13 Jan 2000 15:55:26 -0600
    From: Wayne Patton <wpatton at>

    The historical pictures I've seen show much the same thing as
    modern-day English heralds use: something more like a wand about
    1-1.5 ft.  long. (Something like a military swagger stick.) The
    ones now in use are white with, I believe, some sort of golden
    bird on the upper end. I used to use a dowel about that size
    painted green with gilded knobs at either end. Never did get good
    at juggling it and the folder with the court schedule, scrolls,
    and ceremony texts in it.
                        Gawain of Miskbridge
                        Shadowdale, Calontir


    Date:         Thu, 13 Jan 2000 20:42:49 -0800
    From: Teceangl <tierna at>

    > I also use it when I'm making a general announcement to the
    > populace; I stand in the middle of the eric, hold the rod over
    > my head, and make my pronouncement.  Since it's white, it
    > catches the sunlight and draws people's attention.

    Yup.  I'm 5'2" and when I need attention, particularly outdoors
    or in a large hall, I hold mine up so people playing "find the
    herald" can.
    Mine's just a white dowel with knobs on the end (affixed with
    double-ended screws in case I ever want to change them).  I do
    want a tapered one, though, as seen in 14th century manuscripts.

    As for court, I put mine down.  I view it as ceremonial for
    rpocessions, hall announcing, invocations, etc. and otherwise
    just in the way.  For field invocations I hold it in the upper
    hand and hold my Ceremonial (a binder) at top and bottom, as I
    would a screll.  (I've plans to print some pages sideways on
    trial, but suspect the binder'd buckle.)  Looks pretty good.


    Date:         Wed, 13 Jan 0100 16:26:39 -0600
    From: Craig Levin <clevin at>

    ... That's _way_ too big for a herald's staff. Period herald's
    staves appear to be more like 2 feet than seven. See, for example,
    the illos of heralds in Fox-Davies. ...

    Well, the Romans tied white ribbons to one end, and topped it off
    with a sort of knob in ancient times. Heralds in the Holy Roman
    Empire occasionally had their staves painted in alternating
    stripes, like a barbershop pole, of their patrons' livery colors.
    However, the most common herald's staff was just a plain
    unornamented stick.

    Pedro (who's working on a lecture on herald's staves)


    Date:         Mon, 19 Jul 1999 21:52:32 -0700
    From: James of the Lake <jotl at>

    >They're usually small-maybe a couple of feet long as a max..
    >They're typically plain-colored.
    >They're tipped with the herald's particular badge of office. In
    >this case, I'd suggest your branch's fieldless badge.
    >Some examples of herald's staves can be seen on page 34 of
    >Bedingfeld and Gwynn-Jones' _Heraldry_.
    >Pedro de Alcazar

    I suspect that the current wands of the English CoA (white with
    gold trim and the herald's badge on top) are post-period, however.
    Heralds (many!) in the procession for Henry VIII's 1511 tourney in
    _The Great Tournament Roll of Westminster_ are indeed rather short
    (almost as short as relay race batons) and have a spiral
    decoration down their length, IIRC); they are plain at both ends.
    [Yes. The heralds walking in procession on Plate IX have wands
    about the length that Pedro gives above which are candy-striped
    green and white (like big peppermint sticks.]  I believe that
    Neubecker has pictures of heralds carrying wands while performing
    their duties; and late period letters patent confirming armory
    often depict a King of Arms in the initial capital letter holding
    a long, thin white wand -- rather like a pointer.  A wand may have
    been used to help hold scroll flat for reading during
    proclamations and the like.
Daniel de Lincolia
Tim McDaniel (home); Reply-To: tmcd at; 
if that fail, my work address is tmcd at

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