Colours. Although, properly speaking, there are but the nine tinctures in Heraldry(q.v.), of which two are metals, yet in some coats of arms certain colours are incidentally and perhaps irregularly named. Such, for instance, as a lion party of an ash colour; a horse, of a bay colour; a horse's head and wild-ducks, brown; the mine, in the arms of the Miners' Company(q.v.), of earth colour, with the chief brown colour. The carnation is frequently used with the French heralds for pink or flesh colour, applied to human subjects, and especially the face; grey is applied to hair, russet is said of a parrot, and yellow of a pheasant's breast. With respect to white, it may be used instead of argent for the lining of mantles, which are not generally taken for cloth of silver, but a pure white fur, which some call the litvit's skin. It often happens, too, that certain charges are blazoned 'proper,' and these when rightly represented frequently require the used of other colours than the recognised tinctures of heraldry. Gold and silver, with heralds of the seventeenth century, are terms used for or and argent in complicated arms, where these tinctures have been already named, but solely for the purpose of avoiding repetition of the same word.
Argent, a lion rampant sable, the head, paws, and half of the tail ash colour--GWILT, South Wales.
Argent, a horse passant, bay colour, between two tilting-spears in fesse sable--SHEKEL, Pebworth.
Argent, a horse passant, bay colour, holding in his mouth a tulip slipped proper--ATHERTON. [Noted by Glover as a quartering.]
..... A chief or charged with three horse's heads erased brown--WRENNE.
Gules, a chevron argent between three wild ducks brown--WOLRICH.
D'argent, aux deux jumeaux accouplés de carnation posé sur une terrasse de sinople--Martin de BOUDARD.
Gules, three men's heads couped at the shoulders argent, crined grey--EDYE.
Per pale, argent and gules, in the dexter fesse point a parrot russe, beaked and legged or--Richard SENHOUSE, Bp. of Carlisle, 1624-26.
Argent, a chevron azure between three pheasant cocks vert, beaked and legged gulles, breast yellow--Richard CHOPIN, Alderman of London.
In poetical blazon, however, with old writers, other than technical terms are used. For instance, at the Siege of Caerlaverock, which tool place A.D. 1300, we learn from a contemporary poem of the siege that Robert FITZ-ROGER had his banner.
"De or e de rouge esquartelée, O un bende tainte en noir,"
Quarterly or and gules, a bend sable.
And the Earl of Hereford had.
"Baniere out de Inde cendal fort De or fin, dont au dehors asis O une blanche bendelée Ot en rampant lyonceaus sis," De deus costices entrealée
Azure, a bend argent cotised or, between six lioncels rampant of the second.
Other examples will be found, e.g. in an example given under cadency, where it will be seen that 'gules' is described as 'red as blood,' vermeille cum sanc; and under chaplet, 'deux chapeaux des roses vermals.'