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From:
Subject: Re: Amie de Gaveston Rebuttal
Date: Tue, 28 Jan 2003 21:00:53 EST


I thought someone else with better knowledge of French heraldic terms might
answer, but here goes a rough translation of the Gabaston arms:

Ecartelé [quarterly]
aux 1 et 4 d'or [1 & 4, gold], à 2 vaches [cows] de gue [gules], accornées
[horns], onglées [hoofs], colletées [collars], clarinées [bells] d'az [azure]
à 3 pieds de sab [3 feet, sable].

The 1st and 4th quarters are identical with the shield for Béarn.

Dictionnaire de la Noblesse gives the arms of Gascogne as
Ecartelé, aux 1 et 4 d'argent, au lion de gueles; à la gerbe d'or, liée
d'azur.

This shows that a garb was used as a device, but that is not the same thing
as the three garbs on the tomb at Winchester.

It also struck me as interesting that Sir Rauf/Ralph de Monthemer, that young
handsome new man who married Margaret de Clare's mother Joan, bore Or, an
eagle displayed vert as his arms. I wonder if Piers' arms could be a
variation of this coat.

As to medieval British arms, cows were unheard of in England as arms, bulls
being preferred. But even then the only time oxen or bulls appear in the
early medieval period are (1) in the 2nd & 3rd quarters of the arms of the
Count of Foix and Gaston de Foix, Earl of Longueville (d. ca. 1458) and (2)
in the 1st & 4th quarters of the tomb at Winchester [Dictionary of British
Arms: Medieval Ordinary].

It is easy to see why attention would be drawn to Gaston de Foix, BUT as has
been pointed out, they appear in his quartering in 2 & 3, not 1 & 4, and his
1 & 4 are completely and plainly different from 3 garbs. There cannot be any
real confusion between his arms and the tomb at Winchester. Also, his two
cows were gules, collared Or belled Az.

One can certainly conclude two things about the tomb in Winchester, (1) it
was not that of the Count of Foix, or Gaston de Foix, and (2) it was of
foreign (not British) origin. Given the Gabaston arms listed above, it would
be the tomb of Arnaud de Gabaston, who is known to have been buried at
Winchester. I would think the arms of Piers would only be on that tomb if
(1) he had intended to be buried there, but could not given the politics of
1312, or (2) Arnaud was his father.

Paul


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