Book of Crests By James Fairbairn. Note that when we refer to crests there are no pictures of crests in the belt and buckle design you see today. Set 1. Preface. Main Author: Fairbairn, James. Language(s): English. Published: Edinburgh: T. C. and E. C. Jack, Edition: New ed., rev. Subjects: Crests. Fairbairn’s book of crests of the families of Great Britain and Ireland. Being a fourth edition, Note: The Mabel E. Thurston Book Plate Collection. Bookplate of .

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These figures are frequently to be met with rcests the thirteenth century, but what they represented, or what their utility was, is doubtful. Return to our Heraldry Index Page.

Fairbairn’s book of crests of the families of Great Britain and Ireland

Crwsts have, however, innumerable instances of women bearing coats armorial ; a fact particularly illustrated hook their seals, which are still preserved: Some declare a Crest is a mere ornament, but it has been so much considered a mark of distinction that different Sovereigns have made additions to the Crests of their subjects.

The chief sources from which Heraldic instruction is to be derived are the seals which are appendages to ancient writings, illuminated manuscripts, tombs, and buildings. Indeed, one of the most useful purposes to which both Crests and armorial shields were applied, was in the seals affixed to written instruments, as already intimated.

Some Writers imagine that Crests were originally plumes of feathers; off, in all probability, these were nothing more than a particular kind of Crest. They addressed the imagination by a more direct channel and in a more striking manner than bok while at one glance they recalled the most important events in the history of persons, families, and nations. According to the general opinion, the Crest was not hereditable like the arms of a family, and, consequently, every successor might assume a boko one.

Several have been granted for certain services. Their immediate relations to war, and to the honourable distinctions arising from it, connected them with the deeds and manners of former times. Women, it is generally asserted, may not bear Crests, because in ancient times they crets not wear a helmet.


The visor of David, the successor of Robert, is in front, but no Crest on the helmet, nor have the two succeeding Kings any. The helmet of Robert, Governor of Scotland, bears a lion, ; and the same is on that of Murdac, his successor, both being Crests.

Fairbairn’s book of crests of the families of Great Britain and Ireland.

On a seal of the Earl of Strathern, attached to a writing,is a shield placed between eagles, so that the head of the bird appears above, like a Crest. It appears from ancient monuments, that the Crest consisted of some plain and simple device, or what was.

Those Knights and Gentlemen, who repaired to tournaments, were distinguished by their Crests. But there is no satisfactory proof whether the Crest was really cests to render a leader easily recognised by his men, to make him look more formidable in battle, or as an ornamental mark of distinction.

Many persons of different names bear crfsts Crests, and as many of the same name bear different ones. At the time the Royal Seal exhibited no Crest they were common on those of subjects.

It derives its name from Crista, a cock’s comb, as it was supposed to have been originally a projection over the top of some helmets many of which, however, had noneand it has been supposed by Antiquarians that the first fsirbairn of the Crest arose from this projection.

Royal Book of Crests By James Fairbairn It struck me that these volumes would be a useful resource to have on the site. HERALDRY was employed in the feudal ages to display the exploits of chivalry, and to reward as well as commemorate its triumphs over oppression and violence.

The original purpose of a Crest, as some Authors affirm, was to make a commander known to his men in battle; or, if it represented a monster, or other tremendous object, to render him warlike and terrific.

The great seal of Richard L, who died A. This is an example page to show you the format used. We find in a drawing of the fairbzirn century, relative to a military encounter of Ofia, there is a figure with a kind of Crest on the helmet; and the same figure occurs again in another transaction of that time.


On that of Richard II. The Crest was deemed a greater mark of Nobility than the Armoury, as it was borne at tournaments, to which none were oof until they had given strong proofs of their magnanimity. We find in the representations of ancient encounters, that the combatants appear with enormous Crests, almost as large as the helmets.

The period when Crests were first introduced into Britain cannot be ascertained. The nobles of a land should constitute at once its fairbaorn and its strength; they should be in some respects its “turrets and foundationstone.

Crests were likewise embroidered on the vestments of the attendants at the if of Parliament, Coronations, and public solemnities; they were also engraven, carved, or printed on property in the same manner as coats of arms.

Catalog Record: Fairbairn’s book of crests of the families of | Hathi Trust Digital Library

On the helmet of Henry IV. Indeed, it was uniformly esteemed an honourable symbol. Every day we may behold the most uncommon, complicated, and unintelligible Crests, chosen without design or reason. Amidst the imperfections of uncultivated eloquence and a general ignorance of written language, the ensigns of heraldry were peculiarly significant.

Set 1 Preface HERALDRY was employed in the feudal ages to display the exploits of chivalry, and to reward as well as commemorate its triumphs over oppression and violence.

A Crest is the uppermost part of an Armoury, or that part of the casque, or helmet, next to the mantle. Ornaments are on the head of Edward Baliol’s horse, nearly of the same period. In there is a seal of Hugh le Despencer, with a warlike figure on the helmet and horse’s head.

In all the countries of Europe, rank, title, and precedence are the grand prizes in the race of life.