[ANSTHRLD] OT but still heraldry

tmcd at panix.com tmcd at panix.com
Sun May 6 19:57:49 PDT 2007

On Sat, 5 May 2007, Mike C. Baker <kihebard at hotmail.com> wrote:
> [Chiara wrote:]
> > Where can I find references to school heraldic rules if there are
> > any. I.E.  is there a set of rules for setting up an academic
> > heraldic layout like there is for a crown or for a female or for a
> > academic institusion, etc.
> >
> > Chiara

There are no rules; more anon.

> Beyond that: in the search for applicable rules I would start by
> checking with the Texas Department of Education if they hold any
> sway over the school

It'd be worth doing a few minutes' search, I suppose, but I'd be
gobsmacked if Texas had any rules about logos other than
- don't get arrested
- don't get us sued
- don't offend people (avoid Ind^H^H^H Native Americans or other
  ethnic groups, for example)
and those rules might not even be written down.

> Traditional layouts used by schools in Oklahoma (and by casual
> observation also in Texas) are often quarterly on a heater-shaped
> field,

That's fairly common, I have to admit.  It's also atrocious in terms
of heraldic style.  Detailed rant, er, explanation available upon
request.  Short form: that sort of design is "my life barcoded on my
arms" and doesn't resemble real-world inherited quartered arms.

If I could consult, I'd ask
- "school district": public school?
- what's the name of the school?  For example, Washington DC uses the
  arms of a Washington family.
- what are the school colors?
- where is the school?  The city's name, historical events, or
  whatever might be productive.
- what is the mascot?  Is the mascot in its natural colors
  (a tawny cougar, for example) or some other color?

> Other relatively common elements: quill pen (full plume), scrolls,
> books, athletic equipment, mortarboard hats, students in graduation
> gowns (with the hats), academic equipment (esp. art, geometry &
> drafting implements), animals particularly associated with local
> agriculture, ears or garbs of wheat, other fruits/vegetables.

For example, the colleges of Oxford
(<http://www.ccstitches.co.uk/product.php?grp=G07&cat=C12&scat=z>) and
tended to take the arms of the founder.  Warning if you look at them:
the founders tended to be "old money", or wanting to imitate them, so
they often had quartered arms, reflecting their ancestry.

There's a fair number of ecclesiastical charges, because the schools
originally were designed to produce priests.  I'd certainly avoid
mitres and such.  A cross caused a Big Fuss in the SCA Northern
Atlantian Principality drive of a few years back, so best to avoid

The one charge I notice in Oxbridge colleged: books.  Open or closed,
and if open sometimes with words ("truth" and suchlike).

I don't remember seeing pens, scrolls, and such, but it wouldn't amaze
me.  For a rural school, agricultural symbols wouldn't be a bad idea.

Danielis de Lindonio
Tim McDaniel; Reply-To: tmcd at panix.com

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