Cross Recercelée


§32. Cross recercelée: of all the crosses perhaps this has been the most disputed by heraldic writers. We find the term sarcelly more frequently used, but there are so many varieties of spelling adopted by different authors of the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries, that it is a question whether there is one word or two; attempts, however, appear to have been made to distinguish different meanings attached to different modes of spelling. They are as follows, so far as printed works go(manuscript readings would add to the number):--cercelée, recercellé, recersile, resarcelée, resarcelled, sarcelée, sarcelly. One writer speaks of cerclée being spelt cercelée and recercelée, and so confused with the sarcelly.

The term as applied to the Cross occurs twice in one of the two rolls which are apparently of HENRY III.rd's reign. Also in a roll temp. EDWARD II. two examples occur with the term voided added and one without, though in the latter voided is, no doubt, implied; hence, as the general outline was similar to the cross moline, it may be considered as a cross moline voided, or disjoined, and drawn as in arms of KNOWLES opposite. See §6.

The appearance is just as if in order to strengthen his shield the smith had taken four pieces of iron and bent them round, as was done in the case of hinges and other ornamental iron-work found remaining on church doors, &c., of the 13th and 14th centuries, primarily to add strength to the woodwork, but at the same time ornamentation.

Modern heralds seem to use the term alike for the cross moline and for the cross moline voided, and employ usually in blazon the spelling sarcelly. But beyond this, in various books on heraldry, both English and foreign, an attempt is made to distinguish between recercelé, i.e. cerclé or circled, and sarcelly, defined by Berry as 'a cross voided, or as it were, sawed apart.' See more under Recercelé.


Hugh de BAUCOY, d'or a une croyz de goules recersele; a une labeu de sable--Roll, temp. HEN. III.

Edwarde de PAVELEY, dazure a un croys dor recersele--Ibid.

Sire William de BASINGES, de azure, a une crois recercele e voide de or, e un baston de goules--Roll, temp. ED. II.

Sire ... de BASINGE, de azure, a un crois recercele et voide d'or--Ibid.

Sire Peres de TADINGTONE, de sable a un crois de or recersele--Ibid.

Monsire de WONNEDALE, port d'argent une crois recersele de gules--Roll, temp. ED. III.

Monsire de BEKE, port le revers--Ibid.

Monsire de BRENNE, port d'asure a un crois d'or recersele; une baston de gules--Ibid.

Monsire Oliver de INGHAM, port parte d'or et vert, a une crois recercele gules--Ibid.

Quarterly, gules and sable, a cross sarcelle quarterly or and ermines, on a chief of the third a rose en soleil between two pelicans of the first--Edmund BONNER, Bp. of Hereford, 1539, afterwards of London, 1539-49, and 1553-59.

Ermine, a cross sarcelly sable--GODARD, Chester.

Azure, crusilly a cross sarcelly disjoined or--KNOWLES, Earl of Banbury, ob. 1632.

Argent, crusily gules a cross sarcelly sable--RALEIGH.

Argent, a cross sarcelly engrailed sable--COTTER.

Per fesse argent and gules, a cross sarcelly counterchanged--COLUMBERS.

Quarterly, argent and azure, a cross sarcelly counterchanged--JAMES, Surrey.

Azure, a cross sarcelly pierced argent--MELTON, Aston, York.

Gules, a cross sarcelly ermine--BECK, Yorkshire.

Argent, a cross sarcelly disjoined or--BASINGES.

Argent, a cross patty fitchy disjoined or--BROKENCROSS.

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