Archiver > GEN-MEDIEVAL > 2003-01 > 1043577504

From: Renia <>
Subject: Re: Amie de Gaveston Rebuttal - Part 4: A Damsel's Life
Date: Sun, 26 Jan 2003 12:38:24 +0200
References: <>

brad verity wrote:
>> From:
>> That is most unlikely. One does not put the wrong name on an effigy.
>> The
>> effigy was undoubtedly for a Petrus Gaveston, not Arnaud, and was most
>> likely
>> ordered in advance by Piers for his father and remained unfinished
>> because
>> Piers fell from power. We know, as you say, from the arms that this
>> is not
>> Piers the earl portrayed on the effigy.
> OK, let's assume what you say is true - the tomb & effigy were meant for
> Piers the Elder, father of the famous Piers Gaveston, Edward II's favorite.
> My question still remains - why didn't Piers Gaveston bear the same arms
> as his father? We're not talking differences in quartering (or whatever
> its called) that we find with many younger sons - we're talking
> completely different arms. We're talking eagles replacing the belled
> cows and garbs of the arms of the knight on the effigy. In either
> scenario, Arnaud or Piers the Elder, the effigy is said to be of the
> father of Piers Gaveston.

In 'Heraldry, Customs, Rules and Styles' by Carl-Alexander von Volborth,
it says:
Q When heraldic shields were in practical use on the battlefield and in
tournament, it became necessary to distinguish the head of a family from
his sons and relatives, who also had to be distinguished from each
other. It was generally understood that the only person entitled to the
pure, unaltered family arms was the head of the house. Thuys, marks of
differencing, and cadency, called brisures in French, had to be added to
the arms of everybody else. This became a generally accepted custum in
Europe, at least so far as the princes and the higher noblesse were
concerned. There was no international system of differencing and the
choice of brisures was left to the persons concer4ned. However, bendlets
and batons sinister were internationally known as brisures of
illegitimate sons, though they were not the only marks of difference for
illegitimacy. In countries of the German language, brisures were never
as popular as in France or Great Britain. UNQ

In other words, Piers would have had similar arms to his father but with
some difference to show that he was a son, not the father himself. But
the difference would not have been to go from cows to eagles, but to add
a marked line, for example, through the cows, so that the cows move

The arms of Piers Gaveston being so totally different from the arms of
the effigy initially implies that Piers Gaveston was not related to the
man in the effigy. The question is, why would the son of an armigerous
father, adopt totally different arms? Surely, this would only be done if
a) the son was not the son of the accepted father or b) the son was in
some way distancing himself from his father and wanted to establish
himself as armigerous in his own right. But the whole point of coats of
arms, certainly later, was to display an ancient and noble lineage. If
Piers Gaveston did this, then he was likely disassociating himself from
his past in some way. Hopefully an expert on heraldry has something more
to say on this.

Quartering is when the ancestors' varying arms are added to the shield,
but this was later than the period we are talking of.

> So where & why did Piers use eagles as his arms? Eagles had no
> association with Cornwall and its heraldry. And these eagle arms were
> incorporated into the original charter granting Piers the Cornwall
> earldom back in Aug. 1307 (BEFORE Piers returned to England from his
> first exile), so he would have been bearing these arms back before
> Edward II became king - unless the new eagle arms were as much a
> surprise to Piers as the earldom of Cornwall was.

Available from the PRO:

E 41/460 - The king to Peter de Gavaston: Grant of the earldom of
Cornwall and its appurtenants: Corn. - 6 Aug. 1 Edw II

And, from The Dictionary of Heraldry by Joseph Foster:
Gaveston, Piers, Earl of Cornwall 1308, banneret - bore, vert, three
eaglets displayed or; Nobility Roll; six eaglets, 3,2,I, in Parly. Roll;
3 and 3 in Arundel Roll; the field azure, both in Jenyns' Roll and Ordinary.

> (Edward II later told
> the Pope that he had created Piers earl of Cornwall without Piers
> present and without Piers' knowledge, which, as Chaplais showed in his
> book, the chronology bears out.)
> Does anyone know of a heraldry expert/enthusiast that I may consult on
> this?
>> I think his existence is proved by these contemporary records.
> Piers the Elder's existence is SUGGESTED by the Polhistoire stating
> Piers' father bore the same name of Piers. But there's no direct
> statement of activity - the chronicle doesn't say "then Piers Gaveston,
> the earl's father, set forth to the Pope to plead his son's innocence",
> for example.
> Arnaud Gaveston's existence, on the other hand, is not proved at all by
> any contemporary English chronicle - for none ever make mention of him.
> But it is proved by Calendar Rolls, household expenses, military wages,
> and the funeral record. All of these are considered more reliable than
> chronicle mention because they were record of immediate and direct
> transactions, as opposed to narrative "news."

This, for example, from the PRO Catalogue:

C 47/24/2/23 - Claim of Arnold Gavaston for expenses in Gascony 1m - [28
Edw I]

Perhaps these may prove useful:

E 30/1521/6 - Petition by Arnold Calhau, citizen of Bordeaux, to John,
Bishop of Norwich, informing him of the incompetence and disloyalty of
Dominic de Rossidavalle, provost of the Ombrière, who was one of
Gaveston's household; also giving a list of those who have appealed to
the King of France. - [1310] Dec

E 101/375/15 - Particulars of expenses of the carriage of three
pavilions to Langley for the funeral of Piers Gaveston. - 8 Edw. II
E 101/375/16 - Particulars of conveying the body of Piers Gaveston to
Langley. - 8 Edw. II
E 101/376/2 - Particulars of Thomas de London of expenses about the body
of Piers Gaveston at Oxford. 8 Edward II.
E 175/11/16 - Statutes on constraints of actions of the King and removal
of his `evil counsellors', Piers Gaveston and others, indictments of the
forest - 5 Edw II
E 199/7/3 - Cumberland: Particulars of account for castle, manor and
honour of Cockermouth, late of Peter de Gavaston and his wife. - 3 Edw. II


> There's yet to be uncovered any record (as opposed to chronicle)
> evidence of Piers the Elder existing. Likewise, there's yet to be
> uncovered (by me - Jeffrey Hamilton may have uncovered it in unpublished
> sources) any direct record evidence that Earl Piers was the son of this
> recorded Arnaud Gaveston.
> So I'm researching the paternity further.
>> At the very
>> least, we need to be careful in concluding that Piers the earl was the
>> person
>> meant by the fine document -- thus Amie's parentage is still unproved
>> except
>> that we know her father was a Petrus Gaveston.
> I can live with that last statement, as by saying "a Petrus Gaveston"
> you do not exclude Earl Piers as a possibility, which previous
> statements you've made did do.
> Cheers, ------Brad
> _________________________________________________________________
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