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Family Crest - Fishes, Reptiles and Insects

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Like the birds, the fishes are borne for the most part to call to mind their bearers' names. Unless their position be otherwise named, they are painted as upright in the shield, as though rising towards the water surface. The dolphin is know by his bowed back, old artists making him a grotesquely decorative figure.

  • Luce bore "Gules three luces (or pike) silver."
  • Heringaud bore "Azure, crusilly gold, with six golden herrings."
  • Fishacre bore "Gules a dolphin silver."
  • La Roche bore "Three roach swimming."
  • John Samon (14th century) sealed with arms of "Three salmon swimming."
  • Sturgeon bore "Azure three sturgeon swimming gold, with a fret gules over all."
  • Whalley bore "Silver three whales' heads razed sable."

Shellfish would hardly have place in English armory were it not for the abundance of scallops which have followed their appearance in the banners of Dacre and Scales. The crest of Yorkshire Scropes, playing upon their name, was a pair of crabs' claws.

  • Dacre bore "Gules three scallops silver."
  • Shelley bore "Sable a fesse engrailed between three whelk shells gold."
Fishes, Reptiles and Insects

Reptiles and insects are barely represented. The lizards in the crest and supporters of the Ironmongers of London belong to the 15th century. Gawdy of Norfolk may have borne the tortoise in his shield in the same age. "Silver three toads sable" was quartered as a second coat for Botreaux of Cornwall in the 16th century - Botereau or Beterel signifying a little toad in the old Rench tongue - but the arms do not appear on the old Botreaux scales beside their ancient bearing of the griffon. Beston bore "Silver a bend between six bees sable" and a 15th century Harbottle seems to have sealed with arms of three bluebottle flies. Three butterflies are in the shield of Presfen of Lancashire in 1415, while the winged insect shown on the seal of John Mayre, a King's Lynn burgess of teh age of Edward I., is probably a mayfly.