[ANSTHRLD] OT: Outsider looking for Heraldic Consultant

Tim McDaniel tmcd at panix.com
Mon Dec 31 11:44:08 PST 2007

On Mon, 31 Dec 2007, Alasdair MacEogan <alasdair at bmhanson.net> wrote:
> Under what particular heraldic authority have they had a Coat of
> Arms granted?  ... I thought (but could be wrong) that generally the
> person would normally work with the college they are registering
> with on their arms.

England, Scotland, Ireland, and Spain are, as I understand it, unusual
in western Europe in having authorities for registering arms for the
general public.  For example, Sweden has a state herald, but he does
only heraldry for official government bodies.

Even in places with authorities, many people assumed arms -- simply
started using them.  That was the point of late-period and post-period
English heraldic visitations: to sweep thru an area after some years
but before everyone's memory faded, to catch people who'd assumed arms
without registration.  (I suspect that the heralds doing the
visitations weren't so much upset at the presumption as upset at
missing out on the heralds' fees.  Unca Da'ud, tell us about what
heralds sometimes did at funerals as late as the 18th century.)

So, in the US, it's entirely appropriate for someone to design a nice
coat and just use them.

There are arms registration authorities in various countries, but
they're like star naming services: you pay a more or less hefty fee to
be recorded in their Big Book O' Arms (or Stars) and get a pretty
certificate, but nobody else recognizes their acts.  I consider star
naming services to be an outright scam.  Unless US arms registries
offer some sort of useful service like consultation, I don't see why
they'd be any less of a scam.

Danielis de Lincolnia
Tim McDaniel, tmcd at panix.com

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