Here you can find an alphabetical list of Heraldry terms. While in the Lexicon, you will see that some term have a hyperlink for their title. These terms have a larger article explaining them further, simply click on the hyperlink to visit it. You can also search for a term you are looking for by clicking on the little magnifying glass icon at the top right of any page.

Just click on the letter below to go to the corresponding page of the lexicon:

























Y & Z

I have used two books as a basis for the lexicon here. First, The Manual of Heraldry. (Second Edition. London: Virtue & Company 1806). This book has the distinction of being the oldest work I could find on the subject of heraldry which is written in what we might consider modern English. There are definitely more definitive works which are much older than the scant two centuries in issue here, but I have found it is much easier to reference works when the language used is not arbitrarily difficult, after all, heraldry offers plenty of difficult words for the layman to learn already.

The second book I have used is A Glossary of Terms Used in Heraldry: Newly Annotated and Illustrated by Gough, Parker & Kay. (Published by the Unutterable Press 2009. Used with Permission). This text is largely from the original Gough/Parker edition of 1896 with contemporary annotations and illustrations addressing they developments of the last century.

I have annotated and illustrated this list in places to increase the reader’s ability to envision the concepts, I have also added a few notes on where English-style heraldry differs from continental heraldry, as well as some notes I think may be helpful for medieval recreationists.

In places The Manual of Heraldry has omitted discussion of some terms completely. If this was because they did not think they warranted discussion at the time, were worried about space constraints, or if by simple oversight, we are about 200 years too late to find out. In the case of many of these terms, I have done my best to add suitable definition in my own words.

I hope you find the list useful. I will be examining each phrase as the “Term of the Day” in the future, giving each entry an up-close treatment. In the meantime, if you have any questions please use the Ask Herald feature and I’ll do a blog entry for your answer.

Below you can find a listing of the lexicon terms we’ve discussed recently.



Accoutre – (Ak-ku’-ter): To dub a knight. “One was accoutred when the cry began, Knight of the Silver Moon, Sir Marmadan, His vow was (and he will perform his vow), Armed at all points, with terror on his brow, To judge the land, to purge atrocious... read more


An addition to a heraldic achievement is a mark of distinction added to the arms after their creation to signify some exceptional service to the sovereign.  The term Augmentation is more commonly used and is probably the more correct. The form of the addition is most... read more

Affronté / Affrontty

When a charge is facing directly toward the viewer it is said to be Affrontty.  The term can also be found written Affronté, which is probably more proper. The Pimpley definition below comes from the supposed term Affrontee, as in, someone who has been affronted, or... read more


Sharply pointed. Applied especially to a cross on an escutcheon which has its four angles sharpened, but still terminating in obtuse angles. It differs from the cross fitchee in that whereas the latter tapers by degrees to a point, the former does so only at the ends.

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A swallow may rarely be called an “Arrondell” in the blazon of Coats of Armor.

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The Greek god Apollo is recognized as the patron of medicine, music, poetry and the arts. He is identified with the sun and prophecy.

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The Acorn, either alone or in its association with the oak tree is a fairly common charge used in heraldry.

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The anvil is an uncommon charge, but can be seen in the canting arms of families with the name Smith or names which sound like “anvil” such as Anvaile.

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