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:

A

B

C

D

E

F

G

H

I

J

K

L

M

N

O

P

Q

R

S

T

U

V

W

X

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.

Lexicon

Accroupi

From the French word accroupir: to crouch or squat.  Is used as a posture for animal charges in heraldry blazons, is the same as the term Sejant which is used in British blazons. For either term, unless otherwise annotated, the animal should be seated in a natural... read more

Abouttés

In heraldry, Abouttés is the position of charges joined by the ends, united in the center of the shield.     heraldry.historyroad.info ©2008-2010 Abouttés, (fr.) With the ends united in the center, e.g. of four ermines.  See Cross of Four Ermines. A Glossary... read more

Ancient

Generally used in the the sense of “in traditional times” but my also refer to a small heraldic banner used as a guidon or in funeral processions.

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Charges

Anserated Cross

A very rare term used to describe a cross terminating in the heads on some animal. The type of animal should be noted in the blazon.

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Ape

Heraldry does not often distinguish between Apes and Monkeys and their usual depiction is quite stylized and may be difficult to recognize.

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Anchored Cross

Anchored Cross – In this cross the four extremities resemble the flukes of an anchor. It is also called anchry or ancre. It is emblematic of hope through the cross of Christ. Pimbley’s Dictionary of Heraldry; Arthur Pimbley (1908). Originally posted... read more

Ant

The “Ant” or more traditionally “Emmet” are rarely met with in heraldry. When they are used as a charge on a coat armor they are shown tergiant.

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