Gules

Last updated
Gules
 
ClassColour
Non-heraldic equivalent Red
Monochromatic designations
Hatching pattern 
Tricking abbr.g., Gu.
Poetic designations
Heavenly body Mars [ citation needed ]
Jewel Ruby [ citation needed ]

In heraldry, gules ( /ˈɡjuːlz/ ) is the tincture with the colour red. It is one of the class of five dark tinctures called "colours", the others being azure (blue), sable (black), vert (green) and purpure (purple).

Heraldry Profession, study, or art of creating, granting, and blazoning arms and ruling on questions of rank or protocol

Heraldry is a broad term, encompassing the design, display, and study of armorial bearings, as well as related disciplines, such as vexillology, together with the study of ceremony, rank, and pedigree. Armory, the best-known branch of heraldry, concerns the design and transmission of the heraldic achievement. The achievement, or armorial bearings usually includes a coat of arms on an shield, helmet, and crest, together with any accompanying devices, such as supporters, badges, heraldic banners, and mottoes.

Tincture (heraldry) colour used to emblazon a coat of arms in heraldy

Tinctures constitute the limited palette of colours and patterns used in heraldry. The need to define, depict, and correctly blazon the various tinctures is one of the most important aspects of heraldic art and design.

Red Color

Red is the color at the end of the visible spectrum of light, next to orange and opposite violet. It has a dominant wavelength of approximately 625–740 nanometres. It is a primary color in the RGB color model and the CMYK color model, and is the complementary color of cyan. Reds range from the brilliant yellow-tinged scarlet and vermillion to bluish-red crimson, and vary in shade from the pale red pink to the dark red burgundy. The red sky at sunset results from Rayleigh scattering, while the red color of the Grand Canyon and other geological features is caused by hematite or red ochre, both forms of iron oxide. Iron oxide also gives the red color to the planet Mars. The red color of blood comes from protein hemoglobin, while ripe strawberries, red apples and reddish autumn leaves are colored by anthocyanins.

Contents

In engraving, it is sometimes depicted by hatching of vertical lines. In tricking—abbreviations written in areas to indicate their tinctures—it is marked with gu..

Engraving practice of incising a design on to a hard, usually flat surface, by cutting grooves into it

Engraving is the practice of incising a design onto a hard, usually flat surface by cutting grooves into it with a burin. The result may be a decorated object in itself, as when silver, gold, steel, or glass are engraved, or may provide an intaglio printing plate, of copper or another metal, for printing images on paper as prints or illustrations; these images are also called "engravings". Engraving is one of the oldest and most important techniques in printmaking. Wood engraving is a form of relief printing and is not covered in this article.

Hatching (heraldry) System of patterns used in heraldry

Hatchings are distinctive and systematic patterns of lines and dots used for designating heraldic tinctures or other colours on uncoloured surfaces, such as woodcuts or engravings, seals and coins. Several systems of hatchings were developed during the Renaissance as an alternative to tricking, the earlier method of indicating heraldic tinctures by use of written abbreviations. The present day hatching system was developed during the 1630s by Silvester Petra Sancta and Marcus Vulson de la Colombière. Some earlier hatching methods were also developed, but did not come into wide use.

Tricking

Tricking is a method for indicating the tinctures (colours) used in a coat of arms by means of text abbreviations written directly on the illustration. Tricking and hatching are the two primary methods employed in the system of heraldry to show colour in black and white illustrations.


Etymology

The term gules derives from the Old French word goules, literally "throats" (related to the English gullet ; modern French gueules ), but also used to refer to a fur neckpiece, usually made of red fur. [1]

Old French was the language spoken in Northern France from the 8th century to the 14th century. In the 14th century, these dialects came to be collectively known as the langue d'oïl, contrasting with the langue d'oc or Occitan language in the south of France. The mid-14th century is taken as the transitional period to Middle French, the language of the French Renaissance, specifically based on the dialect of the Île-de-France region.

Some heraldic authors[ who? ] believed that the term may have arisen from the Persian word گل (gol, "rose", but according to Brault, [2] there is no evidence to support this derivation.

Persian language Western Iranian language

Persian, also known by its endonym Farsi, is a Western Iranian language belonging to the Iranian branch of the Indo-Iranian subdivision of the Indo-European languages. It is a pluricentric language predominantly spoken and used officially within Iran, Afghanistan and Tajikistan in three mutually intelligible standard varieties, namely Iranian Persian, Dari Persian and Tajiki Persian. It is also spoken natively in the Tajik variety by a significant population within Uzbekistan, as well as within other regions with a Persianate history in the cultural sphere of Greater Iran. It is written officially within Iran and Afghanistan in the Persian alphabet, a derivation of the Arabic script, and within Tajikistan in the Tajik alphabet, a derivation of Cyrillic.

Examples

Different uses of the tincture gules shown in the quartered coat of arms of Nassau-Dillenburg (attributed to Otto II of Nassau, d. 1351):
1. The lion of Nassau, Azure billetty or, a lion rampant of the last
armed and langued gules
;
2. County of Katzenelnbogen, Or
a lion rampant guardant gules
, armed langued and crowned azure;
3. County of Vianden,
Gules
, a fess argent;
4. County of Dietz,
Gules
, two lions passants or armed and langued azure Maurice of Nassau arms.svg
Different uses of the tincture gules shown in the quartered coat of arms of Nassau-Dillenburg (attributed to Otto II of Nassau, d. 1351):
 1. The lion of Nassau, Azure billetty or, a lion rampant of the last armed and langued gules;
 2. County of Katzenelnbogen, Or a lion rampant guardant gules, armed langued and crowned azure;
 3. County of Vianden, Gules, a fess argent;
 4. County of Dietz, Gules, two lions passants or armed and langued azure

Gules is the most widely used heraldic tincture. Through the sixteenth century, nearly half of all noble coats of arms in Poland had a field gules with one or more argent charges on them.[ citation needed ]

Coat of arms unique heraldic design on a shield or escutcheon

A coat of arms is a heraldic visual design on an escutcheon, surcoat, or tabard. The coat of arms on an escutcheon forms the central element of the full heraldic achievement which in its whole consists of shield, supporters, crest, and motto. A coat of arms is traditionally unique to an individual person, family, state, organization or corporation.

Polish heraldry

Polish heraldry refers to the study of coats of arms in the lands of historical Poland. It focuses on specifically Polish traits of heraldry. The term is also used to refer to the Polish heraldic system, as opposed to systems used elsewhere, notably in Western Europe. As such, it is an integral part of the history of the szlachta, the nobility of Poland.

In heraldry, argent is the tincture of silver, and belongs to the class of light tinctures called "metals". It is very frequently depicted as white and usually considered interchangeable with it. In engravings and line drawings, regions to be tinctured argent are either left blank, or indicated with the abbreviation ar.

Examples of coats of arms consisting of purely a red shield (blazoned gules plain) include those of the d'Albret family, the Rossi family, the Swiss canton of Schwyz (prior to 1815), and the old coats of arms of the cities of Nîmes and Montpellier.

Albret royal family of Navarre

The lordship (seigneurie) of Albret (Labrit), situated in the Landes, gave its name to one of the most powerful feudal families of France in the Middle Ages.

Canton of Schwyz Canton of Switzerland

The canton of Schwyz is a canton in central Switzerland between the Alps in the south, Lake Lucerne to the west and Lake Zürich in the north, centered on and named after the town of Schwyz.

Nîmes Prefecture and commune in Occitanie, France

Nîmes is a city in the Occitanie region of southern France. It is the capital of the Gard department. Nîmes is located between the Mediterranean Sea and the Cévennes mountains. The estimated population of Nîmes is 151,001 (2016).

See also

Related Research Articles

Diapering Any of a wide range of decorative patterns used to embellish plain surfaces in a variety of art forms

Diaper is any of a wide range of decorative patterns used in a variety of works of art, such as stained glass, heraldic shields, architecture, and silverwork. Its chief use is in the enlivening of plain surfaces.

In heraldry, tenné is a "stain", or non-standard tincture, of orange, light brown or orange-tawny colour.

Variation of the field heraldic term

In heraldry, variations of the field are any of a number of ways that a field may be covered with a pattern, rather than a flat tincture or a simple division of the field.

Ordinary (heraldry) basic geometric charge in heraldry

In heraldry, an ordinary is a simple geometrical figure, bounded by straight lines and running from side to side or top to bottom of the shield. There are also some geometric charges known as subordinaries, which have been given lesser status by some heraldic writers, though most have been in use as long as the traditional ordinaries. Diminutives of ordinaries and some subordinaries are charges of the same shape, though thinner. Most of the ordinaries are theoretically said to occupy one-third of the shield; but this is rarely observed in practice, except when the ordinary is the only charge.

Orla coat of arms

Orla, is a distinct Polish armorial estate and heraldic clan coat of arms adopted in Polish heraldry since the Crown of the Kingdom of Poland. It was vested upon several knightly families of Poland's nobility situated in the historical region of Greater Poland, Silesia and Lesser Poland from about the 14th century, where it was first historically known in Poland as the coat of arms of 'Saszor' [Szaszor], later 'Orla', and subsequently conferred on the ennoblement of several individuals.

Coat of arms of Denmark national insignia of Denmark

The coat of arms of the Kingdom of Denmark has a lesser and a greater version.

Rule of tincture rule of color composition

The most basic rule of heraldic design is the rule of tincture: metal should not be put on metal, nor colour on colour. This means that or and argent may not be placed on each other; nor may any of the colours be placed on another colour. Heraldic furs as well as "proper" are exempt from the rule of tincture. The rule seems to have operated from the inception of the age of heraldry, i.e. about 1200-1215, but seemingly was never written down. It was rather deduced by later commentators as a rule which must have existed, based on the evidence it produced. Although the vast majority of coats of arms ever used across the whole of Europe follow the rule, a very few coats which contravened the rule were borne in the mediaeval era by certain families or corporate bodies for many centuries without effective censure by the heraldic authorities. The reason for the original contraventions and for the toleration of them is unknown, although in the case of the arms of the Kingdom of Jerusalem clearly extreme high status was involved.

In classical heraldry, vert is the tincture equivalent to the colour "green". It is one of the five dark tinctures (colours). The word vert is simply the French for "green". It is used in English in the sense of a heraldic tincture since the early 16th century. In Modern French, vert is not used as a heraldic term. Instead, the French heraldic term for green tincture is sinople. This has been the case since c. the 16th century. In medieval French heraldry, vert also meant "green" while sinople was a shade of red. Vert is portrayed by the conventions of heraldic "hatching" by lines at a 45-degree angle from upper left to lower right, or indicated by the abbreviation vt. when a coat of arms is tricked.

Ermine (heraldry) "fur", or varied tincture, in heraldry

Ermine in heraldry is a "fur", a type of tincture, consisting of a white background with a pattern of black shapes representing the winter coat of the stoat. The linings of medieval coronation cloaks and some other garments, usually reserved for use by high-ranking peers and royalty, were made by sewing many ermine furs together to produce a luxurious white fur with patterns of hanging black-tipped tails. Due largely to the association of the ermine fur with the linings of coronation cloaks, crowns and peerage caps, the heraldic tincture of ermine was usually reserved to similar applications in heraldry.

Rose (heraldry) heraldic symbol

The rose is a common device in heraldry. It is often used both as a charge on a coat of arms and by itself as an heraldic badge. The heraldic rose has a stylized form consisting of five symmetrical lobes, five barbs, and a circular seed. The rose is one of the most common plant symbols in heraldry, together with the lily, which also has a stylistic representation in the fleur-de-lis.

Blazon art of describing heraldic arms in proper terms

In heraldry and heraldic vexillology, a blazon is a formal description of a coat of arms, flag or similar emblem, from which the reader can reconstruct the appropriate image. The verb to blazon means to create such a description. The visual depiction of a coat of arms or flag has traditionally had considerable latitude in design, but a verbal blazon specifies the essentially distinctive elements. A coat of arms or flag is therefore primarily defined not by a picture but rather by the wording of its blazon. Blazon also refers to the specialized language in which a blazon is written, and, as a verb, to the act of writing such a description. Blazonry is the noun describing the art, craft or practice of creating a blazon. The language employed in blazonry has its own vocabulary, grammar and syntax, which becomes essential for comprehension when blazoning a complex coat of arms.

Attributed arms

Attributed arms are Western European coats of arms given retrospectively to persons real or fictitious who died before the start of the age of heraldry in the latter half of the 12th century. Arms were assigned to the knights of the Round Table, and then to biblical figures, to Roman and Greek heroes, and to kings and popes who had not historically borne arms. Each author could attribute different arms for the same person, but the arms for major figures soon became fixed.

Orle (heraldry) heraldic ordinary

In heraldry, an orle is a subordinary consisting of a narrow band occupying the inward half of where a bordure would be, following the exact outline of the shield but within it, showing the field between the outer edge of the orle and the edge of the shield.

Crosses in heraldry heraldic figure

A number of cross symbols were developed for the purpose of the emerging system of heraldry, which appeared in western Europe in about 1200. This tradition is partly in the use of the Christian cross an emblem from the 11th century, and increasingly during the age of the Crusades. A large number of cross variants were developed in the classical tradition of heraldry during the late medieval and early modern periods. Heraldic crosses are inherited in modern iconographic traditions and are used in numerous national flags.

In heraldry, a stain is one of a few non-standard tinctures or colours, which are only known to occur in post-medieval heraldry and are thought to denote a rebatement of honour. Almost none of these rebatements are found in fact of heraldic practice, however, and in British heraldry the stains find only exceptional use, other than for purposes of livery.

Coat of arms of the London Borough of Camden

The coat of arms of the London Borough of Camden is the official heraldic arms of the London Borough of Camden. The arms were granted on 10 September 1965. The borough was formed by the merger of three former boroughs, the Metropolitan Borough of Hampstead, the Metropolitan Borough of Holborn and the Metropolitan Borough of St. Pancras, and symbols from their old coats of arms were taken over to the new borough arms.

Roundel (heraldry) heraldry term for a circular charge

A roundel is a circular charge in heraldry. Roundels are among the oldest charges used in coats of arms, dating from the start of the age of heraldry in Europe, circa 1200–1215. Roundels are typically a solid colour but may be charged with an item or be any of the furs used in heraldry. Roundels are similar to the annulet, which some heralds would refer to as a false roundel.

Heraldry of León

The first instance of a figure of the lion as symbol of the Kingdom of León is found in minted coins of Alfonso VII, called the Emperor (1126-1157). Until then, the cross had a preponderant position on documents and coins of Leonese monarchs since that reign the cross was gradually displaced by the lion. The Spanish historian and heraldist Martín de Riquer explained that the lion was already used as heraldic emblem in 1148. At the end of the reign of Alfonso VII, the figure of this animal began to appear on royal documents as personal device of the monarch and became pervasive during reigns of Ferdinand II (1157-1188) and Alfonso IX (1188-1230).

References

  1. Harper, Douglas. "gules". Online Etymology Dictionary .
  2. Brault, Gerard J. (1997). Early Blazon: Heraldic Terminology in the Twelfth and Thirteenth Centuries, (2nd ed.). Woodbridge, UK: The Boydell Press. ISBN   0-85115-711-4.
  3. Historia Anglorum c. 1250
  4. Chillon Castle, c. 1500
  5. Livro de Armerio-Mor, c. 1509
  6. Stained glass at the Franciscan Monastery Museum in Villingen-Schwenningen, 1567
  7. Chorographia Württemberg, 1591, attributed to Casimir III the Great