Semé, (fr.), sometimes written semy: means that the field is sown or strewed over with several of the charges named, drawn small and without any reference to the number. Various synonyms are used by heraldic writers. In a roll temp. HEN. III., poudré is most frequently used, meaning precisely the same; in another roll plein de in found. More modern writers used such terms as aspersed, replenished with, and two old French terms averlye and gerattie are also given in glossaries. Some writers use sans nombre, and a very fanciful distinction has been made between this and semé, namely, that when all the charges are drawn entire sans nombre should be used, but if the outline of the field or any ordinary cuts any of the charges that then semé should be used. In the case of semé of crosslets, billets, bezants, the special term crusily, billetty, and bezanty, already noted in their proper places, are preferable. Platy, hurty, and tortoily, are not so. The term is somewhat awkwardly applied to Chequy in the blazon of the arms of the Bishop of ELY as given in Wharton's 'Anglia Sacra.'
Sr JOHN de Bretaigne, porte eschekere d'or et d'azur, ou le cantell d'ermyne ou le bordure de gulez poudre ou lepars d'or--Roll, temp. HEN. III.
Per fesse gules and sable, a lion rampant argent semy of crosses croslet of the first--LODGE, co. York.
Gules, semy of nails argent, three stems of a flower vert--ASHBY.
Azure, semy-de-lis and a lion rampant argent--HOLLAND.
Gules, semy-de-lis or, a lion rampant and a canton ermine--MARKS, Suffolk.
Or, semy of hearts and in chief a lion rampant gardant azure--GOTHES.
Or, on a chevron gules, within a bordure azure semée of mitres[better, charged with eight or more mitres] of the first--Edmund STAFFORD, Bp. of Exeter, 1395-1419.
Chequy argent, semée of torteaux, and azure semée of fleur-de-lys or--Louis de LUXEMBOURG, Bp. of Ely, 1438-43, [and Archbishop of Rouen, 1443-56].
Le REY DE FRAUNCE, de asur poudre a flurette de or--Roll, temp. HEN. III.
Rauf le FITZ NICOLE, de goules, ung quintefueil de or; le champ pleyn des escallopes d'argent--Ibid.
Or, the field replenished with estoiles azure, a lion rampant gules--GALLYHALT.