Heraldry contains many specialist terms and also common words that have specific meanings when used in a blazon. Unfortunately these terms are not always used consistently.

Additional decorative elements that appear behind the shield in a full coat of arms.
When there is more than one charge, the arrangement describes how the charges are placed in relation to each other.
Artist Hint
We use this term to mean a series of instructions to "tweak" the position, orientation or size of a charge. There is no particular heraldic tradition for this but it seems like a reasonable (and useful) addition.
The whole of the Shield description, using the language of blazonry.
An item that can be located in various locations on the shield, it may appear multiple times and in various orientations and arrangements. Some authorities include ordinaries as charges but it will help you understand and use DrawShield if you agree to consider ordinaries and charges as very separate things!
Coat of Arms
This is possibly the most misunderstood term as it can mean many things. In DrawShield we tend to use it to refer to a larger ensemble that just a shield, so it would the combination of shield, crests, achievements, mantling and so on. (see Shield, below)
Additional decorative elements that appear on the top edge of a shield in a full coat of arms.
The underlying colour or pattern of the shield, typically the first thing described in the blazon.
This is a DrawShield specific term which means a part of a charge that can be given a different colour from the main body of the charge. Charges may have multiple features, each of which can be given their own colour. Note the use of the word "colour" here, DrawShield currently restricts features to being plain colours or metals only.
A repeating shape that creates patterns with fixed colours. They can be used to colourise any item.
This is a heraldic term for the colours or and argent. For most purposes, DrawShield treats metals just like any other plain colour, there are however heraldic guidelines about using colours on metals and metals next to each other. DrawShield does not at present implement these guidelines but in future they may trigger warnings if they are breached.
This is a DrawShield specific term which means additional information that further describes a charge and how it appears. For example, the stance of an animal, how its tail is laid out or whether a cross has a hole in it.
A shaped item that always occupies the same location on the field of the shield. Some authorities combine charges and ordinaries but DrawShield treats them as different classes of item, with different options available.
Most charges are not symmetrical and have a particular "default" way that they face. The orientation describes this, and how it may be changed to face a different direction, be upside down and so on.
In DrawShield, ornaments are a fixed set of accessories with fixed colours and positions that are placed around the shield in an achievement. They typically indicate that the bearer of the arms holds a particular rank or office and are especially common in ecclesiastical heraldry.
This is a DrawShield specific term that sometimes appear in error messages. Based on the number, orientation, arrangement and location of a charge, the program tries to calculate its placement - i.e. a specific "box" on the shield that can contain the charge. Sometimes due to shortcomings in the program code, or due to conflicting information in the blazon it may not be possible to calculate this placement correctly.
The location of a group of charges, or a single charge on the field of the shield.
(Also Armorial Roll) a page of essentially unlimited length that contains a set of individual (possibly related) arms, typically only the shield portions. Originally created by heralds as a work of reference.
In DrawShield this specifically refers to the shield itself, which has a field upon which ordinaries and charges are placed.
The colouration or pattern of an item on the shield. This may a plain colour, a treatment, a fur or a division. In this user guide, I generally use tincture when any of these options are available, and colour when only a plain colour or metal can be used.
Various repeating shapes that create patterns of two colours and can be used to colourise items.

Please Help!


Test Me

flashcard image