A Collation of Laurel Precedents Regarding Crosses

compiled by Lady Alanna Volchevo Lesa, Golden Dolphin Herald

The following have been compiled from the published Precedents of the various Laurel Sovereigns of Arms and from recent Letters of Acceptance and Returns. Newer rulings override old ones, so I have arranged them in reverse chronological order. Past precedents, especially those before the 1989/90 implementation of the current Rules for Submission, do not necessarily indicate the current policies and practices of the College.

... there is a substantial difference between a patriarchal cross and a plain cross throughout. [Karolus Janos, 02/00, A-Ansteorra]

... the difference between a Celtic cross and a cross fleury, while significant enough for a CD, is not substantial enough for X.2, Difference of Primary Charges, to apply. [Celestine de Chatham, 01/00, R-Meridies]

...there is not a CD between a cross crosslet fitchy and a cross bottony. [Gertraud von Wuerzburg, 12/99, R-Caid]

[Gyronny sable and Or, a cross rayonnant gules] The device conflicts with flag of England, Argent, a cross gules. We cannot give a difference for the rays because at least half of them have low contrast with the field and because they are drawn relatively small. [Charles Roberts, 11/99, R-Outlands]

No documentation was provided that Ukrainian sun crosses were used as anything except an artistic motif in period. There are many artistic motifs that were never used in heraldry, even in areas that used heraldry. Therefore, being an artistic motif is insufficient. As there is not period Ukranian heraldry it may be difficult to show that the sun crosses were use in heraldry; however, it may be sufficient to show examples of a sun cross used as a form of iconic identification similar to armory. [Volodymyr Mykhailovych Dolhoruko, 11/99, R-Atlantia]

There is a CD between a cross nowy and a cross quadrate. [Magdalena Bischoptre, 10/99, A-Calontir]

... there is still a CD between a cross flory and a cross bottony. [Caterina de Cesare, 8/99, A-Middle]

[a Latin cross bottony fitchy vs. a cross bottony fitchy] There is 1 CD for the field, but none for the difference in the crosses. [Matilda Merryweather, 8/99, R- Ansteorra]

A cross moline is too complex to fimbriate. [Andrew Talbot, 7/99, R-Ansteorra]

[Regarding a cross patee botonny] No documentation was provided that such a cross, which looks like a cross bottony with added flanges, was a reasonable variant of period crosses. [Adele Krin of Malagentia, 7/99, R-East]

A cross swallowtail is significantly different from a cross formy but not substantially different... [Margaret Powell, 7/99, R-Meridies]

[Cross of St. Brigid] The question was raised in commentary regarding banning this cross, since it is an SCA invention and relies on its identifiability from the woven straw internal detailing. However, there are period charges that do just that, for instance moons in their plenitude, so we see no reason to ban this cross. (JoA, LoAR May 1999, p. 4)

[Quarterly argent and sable, a cross moline quarter-pierced, counterchanged] This cross is at the very limits of acceptability for counterchanging. (JoA, LoAR January 1999, p. 6)

This is being returned for using a star cross. The 'star cross' is an SCA invention. It's supposed to have been an ancient Christian symbol formed from the Greek letters IX (iota-chi), the monogram for Jesus Christ. In modern times, it has become the symbol of emergency medical care...." (Pictorial Dictionary, 2nd ed., #215) It has only one prior registration in the SCA, and has since been banned by Laurel precedent: "The fact remains that six armed crosses are not a period charge." (Da'ud ibn Auda, LoAR December 1993, p.10) (JoA, LoAR July 1998, p. 14)

Blazoned of the LoI as crosses formy recerclee, we are treating this as an unblazoned variant of formy. (JoA, LoAR July 1998, p. 4)

While some commenters were concerned that the cross arrondi was "modern" in appearance, in fact this type cross was found on the Bayeux Tapestry. (JoA, LoAR February 1998, p. 9)

[A bordure argent crusily couped gules] The Glossary of Terms, Table 2, Restricted Charges, notes that the "Red cross on white" may not be used in SCA heraldry because it is the symbol of the International Red Cross which is protected by international treaty. The bordure, white semy of crosses couped gules, is in violation of this restriction. Therefore, we must return this submission. (JoA, LoAR December 1997, p. 9)

[Four demi-fleurs-de-lys argent issuant from the edge and conjoined in saltire] This motif is certainly registerable. The Art of Heraldry by A. Fox-Davies (New York: Arno Press, 1976), plate LXXIII, figure 8 is of a manuscript dating back at least to the 16th century. The actual arms have the lilies in cross, not in saltire, but, aside from the tincture change, that is only one (not unreasonable) change from the documented form. The (Victorian) blazon given on pg. 407 for these arms is Gules, four lilies argent, issuing from the edge of the shield and conjoined at the center, forming a cross. (JoA, LoAR December 1997, p. 10)

[There is] nothing for the difference between a cross [formy] and a cross [formy] fitchy. (JoA, LoAR October 1997, p. 10)

[a cross formy fitchy] Against the Order of the Knights of Malta (important non-SCA armory) "Gules, a Maltese cross argent" there are CDs for the field and for the type of cross. More difficult is the possible conflict with Hauoc of House Bender "Per fess sable and gules, a cross formy fitchy throughout argent." There is a CD for the field, but none for Seth's cross being fitchy. The issue, is there a CD between a cross formy vs. a cross formy throughout? In general there is a difference between an ordinary throughout vs. an ordinary couped, but not between a non-ordinary throughout vs. its non-throughout version. Most types of crosses work more like non-ordinaries, but crosses formy are exceptional: in their throughout form they in many ways act as ordinaries. In particular both crosses and crosses formy are occasionally found overlying quartered arms, and crosses formy having flat ends merge into the edge of the shield. This may not apply to crosses in general, but in this instance there is the necessary second CD. (JoA, LoAR May 1997, p. 3)

[A cross doubly pommeled elongated palewise] This is being returned for conflict with Marke von Mainz (SCA) Gyronny argent and sable, a cross moline and a bordure gules., with one CD for the field, and nothing for the difference between the two crosses. (JoA, LoAR February 1997, p. 22)

[A cross couped of three crossbars, missing the dexter base arm, a bordure embattled argent] This cross is a period charge, found in a collection of Polish armory, Herby Rycerstwa Polskiego, 1584, [Paprockiego, 1858]. On a case by case basis, if the charge can be documented as period, and be blazoned in a manner such that we can reproduce the emblazon accurately, we will register charges from cypher heraldry. (JoA, LoAR February 1997, p. 7)

[A San Dominio crucifix argent. ] This is being returned for violating VII.7.a., armorial identifiability. While evidence was produced that crucifixes were used in period, they had the figure of Jesus in a different tincture than that of the underlying cross. With the entire crucifix in one tincture, it blurs into one amorphous mass. Making the underlying cross one tincture and Jesus another should take care of this problem. (JoA, LoAR January 1997, p. 18)

The device is being returned for a redraw. The crosses are not formy and are not fitchy, but some kind of hybrid between the two. (JoA, LoAR January 1997, p. 21)

[Per chevron sable and Or, three crosses bottony fitchy counterchanged] This is being returned for conflict with Ekaterina Adrianovna Sinilnikovna (SCA), Per chevron sable and Or, two Maltese crosses and a griffin counterchanged. There is a CD for changing the type of each of the three charges, but the change of cross to cross is not substantial enough to invoke X.2, and the charges in each case are part of a single group, so we do not count separate differences for the charges in chief and those in base. (JoA, LoAR October 1996, p. 9)

[There is] nothing for the difference between a cross of Santiago and a Latin cross flory. (JoA, LoAR September 1996, p. 19)

[Four crescents conjoined in saltire, horns outward] To quote Baldwin in his April 1986 LoAR "Spring is in the air, and the fit is upon me - let me name but one Cross before I die!" While it is indeed quite tempting to call the four crescents conjoined in saltire a "Cross of Caid", we feel that named SCA motifs make reconstruction of blazons more difficult for heralds and scribes. (JoA, LoAR July 1996, p. 9)

The Cross of Jerusalem is a defined single charge, though it consists of discrete elements in the same way that an ermine spot does. (JoA, LoAR July 1996, p. 18)

[Azure, a cross crosslet fleury argent] This is being returned for conflict with Greece (important mundane armory), Azure, a cross couped argent, and the Eureka Flag (important mundane armory), Azure a crux stellata argent. In both cases there is a CD between the crosses, but not a complete difference of charge. (JoA, LoAR July 1996, p. 19)

[In chief a patriarchal cross and in base three Latin crosses] "The consensus among the commenters was fairly strong that this violates the ban on using two variants of a single charge type in a single group of charges (the `sword/dagger' rule)." (Da'ud ibn Auda, LoAR July 1994, p. 10)

[Returning Azure, a cross patonce between four roses, a bordure argent.] Conflict with ... Azure, a cross flory between four bear's heads couped argent muzzled gules within a bordure argent. There is only one CD for the change to the type of secondary charges [and nothing for patonce vs. flory]. (DiA II, 5/94, p.16)

[Returning {Fieldless} A cross gurgity reversed, interlaced with an annulet argent.] The style of the badge, with its interlaced charges, appears modern rather than period in style. There is also a conflict with ... Azure, a Catherine wheel argent. ...[T]he difference to only the number of "arms" of the "wheel" is insufficient for [a CD]. (DiA II, 4/94, p.21)

[Returning {Fieldless} A Norse sun cross per pale indented Or and gules.] Additionally, ... precedent still disallows armory consisting of a single letter or abstract symbol. (DiA II, 4/94, p.15)

The star-cross is a modern invention and not a period charge. (DiA II, 3/94, p.14)

[Returning Gules, a latin cross throughout parted and fretted argent interlaced with an annulet Or.] Conflict with . . . Gules, a cross voided argent. There is only one CD for the addition of the annulet. [Implying there is no CD between a cross voided and one parted and fretted.] (DiA II, 3/94, p.15)

[Returning a cross maltese gyronny sable and gules.] While the argument that a Maltese cross is "four arms joined at a single point" is interesting, the visual reality is that it is seen as a single charge (a cross), and thus is seen as gyronny, not as four different charges each divided along a pale or fess line. The rules are quite clear that gyronny of two colors is not registerable. (DiA II, 3/94, p.17)

[Returning Per fess sable and argent, a cross botonny Or charged with a rose gules, barbed and seeded proper.] In keeping with the commentary and subsequent December 1993 return of the badge of Anton Tremayne, the weight of commentary was that this conflicts with ... Gules, a cross bottony voided Or, with one CD for the change to the field but without the necessary second for the change to type only of the tertiary. (DiA II, 3/94, p.17)

[Returning Azure, in sinister chief a cross parted and fretted, in dexter base a mermaid argent, tailed and crined, maintaining an estoile Or.] Conflict with . . Azure, a cross double-parted argent. There is one CD for the addition of the mermaid but nothing for the enhancement of the cross to sinister chief or for the fretting at its cross point. (DiA II, 3/94, p.18)

[Registering Quarterly azure and argent, a cross couped between in bend two towers and in bend sinister two roses all counterchanged.] This comes perilously close to having the appearance of marshalled arms. The fact that the cross here is used as a charge rather than the default cross throughout (which is considered an ordinary) saves it from falling afoul of XI.3. No evidence was found by any of the commenters that crosses couped were used in the same way as crosses throughout, crosses paty throughout, or crosses engrailed throughout were in marshalled arms. (DiA II, 3/94, p.10)

[Returning Gules, a patriarchal cross bottony throughout Or.] Conflict with . . . Gules, a cross botonny Or. There may be a CD for the change to the type of cross, but there cannot be sufficient difference between [them]. (DiA II, 2/94, p.13; though listed among the acceptances this was intended as a return and corrected in Laurel's letter of April 12, 1994.]

[Returning Quarterly checky sable and argent and argent, a cross of two thornvines wavy vert.] There are a couple of problems with the primary charge. One is the difficulty of blazon. Laurel counted no less than six different suggestions at a reblazon. This variety alone tends to point out the possible non-period style of the charge. And as several commenters noted, because of both its thinness and waviness, the primary charge tends to disappear along the lines of partition of the field, making immediate identification a little problematical. Finally, it conflicts with ... Or, a cross raguly vert and with ... Argent, a cross slipped vert. In each case there is one CD for the change to the field, but nothing for the very minor visual differences to the type of cross. (DiA II, 2/94, p.18)

[Registering {Fieldless} A Celtic cross within and conjoined to a vol argent.] This is not a visual conflict with ... A winged sledgehammer displayed argent. (DiA II, 3/94, p.5)

The weight of the commentary was that a cross botonny is not a simple enough primary charge for X.4.j.ii. to apply. (DiA II, 12b/93, p.12)

[Registering {field}, an equal-armed Celtic cross flory Or.] Versus . . . {Fieldless}An equal-armed Celtic cross Or, there are CDs for fielded versus fieldless and for flory versus potent. (DiA II, 12a/93, p.12)

[Returning {field} on a key cross throughout argent a county coronet gules.] Conflict with ... Per bend sinister gules and argent, in dexter chief a key cross nowy pierced argent. There is a CD for the field, but the change in position of the cross [in the latter] device is forced by the field. As the cross here is not an ordinary or "similarly simple" geometric design, X.4.j.ii. cannot apply to the change in type only of the tertiary charge. (DiA II, 12a/93, p.20)

[Returning Quarterly ... a cross between in bend two {charges} and in bend sinister two {other charges}.] This device submission violates Rules for Submission XI.3., Marshalling, "divisions commonly used for marshalling, such as quarterly or per pale, may only be used in contexts that ensure marshalling is not suggested." The fillet cross was often used on marshalled arms, and thus the cross here does not remove the appearance of marshalling. (DiA II, 12a/93, p.16)

The submitter's argument that a Maltese star cross is but one step from a recognized period charge, a Maltese cross, is interesting but not particularly compelling. The fact remains that six armed crosses are not a period charge. (DiA II, 12b/93, p.10)

[Four fleurs-de-lys in cross, bases to center] The previous return (LoAR of Sept 91) determined that there was not Sufficient Difference between this arrangement of fleurs-de-lys and a cross flory. Had it been intended that the difference be negligible, however, I suspect the then-Laurel would have come out and said so. I believe there is a CD for type of primary charge group in this case. (BD, Cara Michelle DuValier, August, 1993, pg. 6)

The phrase cross of Cleves is synonymous with "Latin cross flory". We will accept whichever blazon is submitted. (BD, Jonathus of Santiago de Compostela, August, 1993, pg. 8)

[A cross "formy convexed"] This badge had been returned on the LoAR of May 92 for lack of documentation on the type of cross. (It had been blazoned in the previous submission as a cross formy globate, which term we couldn't find in any of our references.) The submitter has appealed that return, providing evidence of this cross as an artistic motif on a suit of armor c.1630. The term "convexed", referring to the bulge of the outer edges of the cross's limbs, is documented in Elvin's Dictionary of Heraldry. Unfortunately, my main concerns about this cross remain unaddressed. It's not readily blazonable: as drawn, it resembles a roundel with four semi-elliptical notches, not a variant of a cross formy. It's been documented only to within our 50-year "grey area", and only as an artistic motif, not an heraldic charge. The only terms that adequately describe it are found in a 19th Century work, compiled by an author whose lack of scholarship is legend. I simply have no grounds for believing this cross to be compatible with period heraldic style. This cross has been submitted before, and returned for the above reasons; v. Jamys Ellyn Rothesay of Bannatyne Hall, LoAR of Sept 92, p.49. I'm tempted, I admit, to simply give the cross its own SCA name. (In the immortal words of Baldwin of Erebor, "Spring is in the air, and the fit is upon me; let me name but one cross before I die!") But this would do no service to the heralds and scribes who will follow us; we need some assurance that any blazon we devisedwould be reconstructable. In this case, at the very least we'd need to find this cross mentioned by name in some accessible reference. Failing that, or better evidence that it's a period motif, I must continue to return it. (BD, Stanislaw Jan Ossolinski, March, 1993, pg. 28)

[A cross swallowtailed] I'd grant a CD between this cross and a cross flory or a cross patonce (which were considered the same charge by medieval heralds). I might not have granted difference against a Maltese cross or a cross fourchy, but no conflicts were cited containing such crosses. (BD, Donata Ivanovna Basistova, March, 1993, pg. 17)

The Norse sun cross had at one time been treated as an alphanumeric symbol (that of the planet Earth), and so unacceptable for use in SCA devices. Under the current Rules, such symbols are now acceptable; indeed, a Norse sun cross was registered to Etain MacDhomhnuill on the LoAR of April 90. (BD, Kenneth MacQuarrie of Tobermory, January, 1993, pg. 12)

[A Maltese star cross] This conflicts with [a snowflake]. The visual similarity between the Maltese star cross and a snowflake is too large to ignore. It also conflicts with [six sets of arrow fletchings in annulo, points conjoined]. Again, the visual similarity is too great to permit a CD to be granted. (BD, Elgar of Stonehaven, January, 1993, pg. 23)

[On an amphora azure, a crux stellata argent] Lords Hund and Crux Australis had protested this badge when it was previously submitted, and have done so again for the current submission. They feel this infringes on the flag of the Eureka Stockade rebellion of 1854: Azure, a crux stellata argent. The Eureka rebellion was evidently a turning point in Australian history, and our Lochac colleagues opine that the motif itself is uniquely associated with it.
I sympathize with their concerns; but I can neither agree with their arguments of exclusivity nor consider this an infringement on the Eureka flag. The argument for exclusivity --- that the motif of a white crux stellata on a blue background is uniquely associated with the Eureka Stockade --- is weakened by Crux Australis' citations of its use by modern Australian trade unions and the Australian Republican movement, and by Hund's citation of its use by the Australian Army Pay Corps. With so many Australian institutions using the motif, it can be considered no more exclusive than, say, a black swan naiant on a gold background (the badge of Western Australia).
Arguments for infringement or presumption require us to consider the amphora (or, for the other Southkeep badge submitted on this LOI, the tower) as a medium for heraldic display --- equivalent to an escutcheon, a lozenge, or a ship's sail. No evidence has been presented to support such a radical change in our policy. We didn't consider a hand argent charged with a rose gules, registered to Eglentyne Merryweather last month, to be a display of the arms of the Princes of Lippe (Argent, a rose gules); we didn't consider a crescent per fess gules and sable, charged [with] a fess argent, registered to Yngvar the Dismal in June 92, to be a display of the flag of the Pan-Arab Union of 1917 (Per fess gules and sable, a fess argent). Many other examples could be found in the A&O of mundane armory "displayed" on some charge: an escallop, an eagle, whatever. Those charges, and the vast majority of charges, are not considered oddly-shaped shields; when bearing tertiary charges, they do not become displays of arms with the tertiaries seen as primaries. To do otherwise is to effectively ban the use of tertiary charges. If An amphora argent charged with a fleur-de-lys gules doesn't infringe on the arms of the city of Florence, then the current submission cannot infringe on the flag of the Eureka Stockade rebellion. Our policy doesn't disparage this symbol from Australian history; rather, we set it on the same level of protection as any other armory. [Badge pended for missing a blazon]. (BD, Southkeep Brewers and Vintners Guild (Shire of Southkeep), December, 1992, pg. 23)

[A Maltese star cross] While SCA-variant charges are often considered acceptable ("period-compatible", as it were), we draw the line at variants of SCA-variants. This submission is a case in point: the star-cross is a Society invention, unattested in medieval armory. While it's still acceptable for SCA use, variations of it are two steps removed from medieval armory, which is an unacceptably broad leap of faith. Without evidence of period compatibility, the Maltese star-cross is unacceptable [see also Elgar of Stonehaven, January 1993 LoAR, pg. 23]. (BD, Elgar of Stonehaven, November, 1992, pg. 14)

We can certainly see granting a CD between a cross moline and a cross patonce. (BD, Dyryke Raleigh, November, 1992, pg. 19)

[A Celtic cross vs. a Celtic cross equal-armed, quarterly pierced and throughout] There is no heraldic difference for the charge being throughout, or not. However, there's a CD ...for the quarter-piercing, which is visually equivalent to adding a tertiary delf. (BD, Toirrdelbach Ua M el Doraid, October, 1992, pg. 16)

[A pair of angles fesswise interlaced in pale vs. a chevronel interlaced with another inverted] [There is a CD] for ...type of "chevronel" --- just as there's a CD between a cross (throughout) and a cross annuletted. (BD, September, 1992, pg. 33)

[Three crosses crosslet fitchy vs. three crosses botonny] There's ...no difference for fitching the crosses, and no difference for crosslet vs. botonny. (BD, Geoffroi de la Marche, September, 1992, pg. 39)

[A Celtic cross] "Conflict with... {fieldless} an equal armed Celtic cross. . . There is one CD for fieldlessness, but that is all." [implying equal-arming is worth no difference from standard latinate] (DiA I, LoAR 5/92 p.23).

"The use of a cross couped gules should probably no longer be allowed in SCA heraldry because of the international treaties and federal law which protect that charge and restrict its use to the International Red Cross (and as a trademark to those who were using it before those treaties went into effect.)" (DiA I, LoAR 5/92 p.25).

[Quarterly... a cross moline voided counterchanged] "This cross appears to be at the very limits of acceptability for voiding and counterchanging." (DiA I, LoAR 4/92 p.7).

"A cross crosslet and a cross bottony are only artistic variations of the same charge, and were used interchangeably in period, so no difference may be granted between them." (DiA I, LoAR 4/92 p.22).

[A cross couped gules irradiated Or] "The badge conflicts with the insignia of the International Red Cross, not by our rules, but by theirs. As stated in Corpora Appendix A, 'the Society recognizes the absolute precedence of law issued by civil authorities over any of its internal rules.' International treaty severely restricts the use of a cross couped gules, and this takes precedence over any of the Rules for Submission, including those for difference, of the SCA." (DiA I, LoAR 2/92 p.20).

[Quarterly gules and argent, in bend two <As> argent and in bend sinister two <Bs> vert, overall a cross sable] "Given that crosses overall were not infrequently used in marshalled arms in period, this has every appearance of the marshalled arms of [Gules, an <A> argent, and Argent, a <B> vert]." [The submission was returned for this reason.] (DiA I, LoAR 11/91 p.16).

[Four fleurs-de-lys in cross, bases to center] "Because of the arrangement of the primaries, we cannot apply X.2 to grant sufficient difference between this arrangement of four fleurs-de-lys and the cross flory." (DiA I, LoAR 9/91 p.17).

[On a gyronny field, quatrefoils in annulo vs. crusilly counterchanged] "There is a CVD for the type of charge and a CVD for their arrangement on the field. [The crusilly] is definitely a seme, with crosses overlying the lines of division and cut off by the edge of the shield." (DiA I, LoAR 5/91 p.7).

"[There is] not enough difference between a maltese cross and a cross patonce for [a CVD]." (DiA I, LoAR 1/91 p.23).

[A tau cross double-crossed, potent at the foot] "[Conflict with] a double-cross (Doppelkreuz) ...(it is a Latin cross double-crossed). While we can see granting a CVD with no problem, we do not believe that X.2 can apply in this case." (DiA I, LoAR 2/91 p.22).

"Evidence was presented that period heralds saw no difference between crosses and crosses fitched, nor did the modification of the bottommost limb of four appear to give adequate visual difference to grant a CVD." (DiA I, LoAR 10/90 p.14).

[Three latin crosses clechy, as primary charges] "Several possible conflicts were cited by a number of commenters, noting primarily that clechy is a later term and that this would conflict with a number of '(field), three crosses formy/paty argent.' It was the consensus of the meeting that the combination of the pointed ends of the cross combined with the longer lower arm was sufficient for a CVD here." (DiA I, LoAR 9/90 p.1).

"The tertiary was blazoned in the LoI as 'a cross resarcelly', which term is not very well defined in the standard heraldic texts, so we have modified the blazon to the closest acceptable form [a cross moline voided]." (DiA I, LoAR 9/90 p.6).

[A cross of four anchors, as only charge on the device] "Most of the commenters, and Laurel, have no serious problem applying the provisions of X.2 to very different types of crosses. Indeed, applying this standard, we can see this submission clear of [same field, a cross crosslet of the same tincture]. However, we believe that the standards to be applied in X.2 are somewhat stronger than those applied to obtain a CVD between charges. As a consequence, we cannot in good conscience call this clear of [same field, a cross potent of the same tincture] (we see one CVD for the change to type of cross) or [different field, a cross of Calatrava of the same tincture] (with one CVD for the change to the field, but less than a CVD for the change to the type of cross)." (DiA I, LoAR 9/90 p.16).

[Cross pointed vs. cross moline] "There is a CVD for type of cross, but with all the good will we could muster, we could not find sufficient difference between these two crosses." [That is, X.2 does not apply between moline and pointed] (DiA I, LoAR 8/90 p.15).

"A cross clechy is a CVD from a cross flory." (DiA I, LoAR 7/90 p.6).

We cannot agree with [the submitting herald] that the mullet of four points should be considered a "form of cross". (AMoE, LoAR 29 Apr 90, p. 7)

While many of the members of the College had a major twitch at the use of the burning cross, this form does not resemble any of the forms nor use of any of the colour combinations that we could find used by the KKK or other white supremacist groups and the cross enflamed is a symbol used in religious iconography with some frequency in a positive manner. (AMoE, LoAR 31 Dec 89, p. 3)

[Three pallets and three barrulets fretted in sinister base] While this resubmission laudably simplifies the device, it does not resolve the problem with the off-center "cross" which produces a distinctly non-period dynamically unbalanced design. (AMoE, LoAR 22 Oct 89, p. 10)

The [papal] cross was not used in secular armoury except in those cases where it was granted as an augmentation by the Pope. This being the case, we feel it inappropriate to modify its current status as a reserved charge. (AmoE, LoAR 18 Jun 89, p. 11)

While [the swallowtailed tau cross] is unusual, it has been formed on the model of the Maltese cross and seems acceptable to us for use in the Society. (AMoE, LoAR 21 May 89, p. 3)

[The principal herald] has provided compelling evidence from illustrations of the regalia of the Order of the Knights of Calatrava that what the Society calls a Cross of Calatrava is merely an artistic variant of the cross flory. (AMoE, LoAR 21 May 89, p. 20)

We could see no more than a minor point of difference between the cross of conjoined ermine spots and the cross fleury. (AMoE, LoAR 21 May 89, p. 23)

[Crusilly conjoined countervoided] [The submittor] has demonstrated that the design element indeed existed in period, but not that it is appropriate for period heraldry. Note that the use of period design elements in Society heraldry is not mandated but rather allowed on a case-by-case basis. For such usages to be accepted, they must have a single identifiable form and must be compatible with period heraldic style.... No one single design could be derived from any blazon we could concoct to represent this. (AMoE, LoAR 23 Apr 88, p. 18)

[Crusilly conjoined, voided in each arm of a delf] This [is] not period style.... The semy of conjoined elements is not really period and it is almost impossible to distinguish the identity of the rather unusual charge scattered on the field. (AmoE, LoAR 27 Sep 87, p. 10)

The [gyronny] cross overlies the cup to such an extent that the cup's identity is unclear (and it is not obvious how this problem could be avoided). Moreover, much of the portions of the cross which determine that it is bottonny fade away, the sable against the blue of the field and the argent against the Or. (AMoE, LoAR 26 Jul 87, p. 13)

The cross overall obscures the underlying cross to such an extent that it is unclear what form the ends of the arms are intended to take. (AmoE, LoAR 29 Mar 87, p. 20)

[A cross nowed and fleury] The badge [is not] really period in style. The terminations of the cross are not really fleury either although that is the nearest blazon from standard heraldry. (AMoE, LoAR 25 Jan 87, p. 17)

I have decided to abandon use of the term cross paty in favor of the less ambiguous cross formy. Modern writers (Woodward, Franklyn and Tanner, Brooke-Little, Fox-Davies) treat the two terms as synonymous; but if we delve further into their definitions, particularly from an historical perspective, we find that paty defines an entire family of crosses, not just a specific variety. [BoE, cvr ltr, 25 Aug 86, p.1]

Cross Paty -- any cross with splayed limbs. The term describes a class of crosses, not a single cross, and so should not be used in blazon. For the general case, Cross Formy should be used instead. [BoE, Cvr ltr 25 Aug 86, p.2]

Cross Formy -- a cross with splayed limbs and straight ends. The sides of the limbs are usually curved, or concave, but they may be straight. They may also come together in a point in the center of the cross. These are artistic issues, and should not be blazoned. The splaying should be pronounced, as this is the chief characteristic of the cross. [BoE, cvr ltr, 25 Aug 86, p.2]

Cross Patonce -- "a cross consisting of four limbs concave on each side, and at the ends convex and notched twice, thus having the appearance of a very shallow fleur-de-lis." (Franklyn & Tanner, p. 254) [BoE, cvr ltr, 25 Aug 86, p. 2]

Maltese Cross -- a cross with splayed limbs, straight sides, and a notch (usually pronounced) in each end. [BoE, cvr ltr, 25 Aug 86, p.2]

Virgule commented at length on the "distinction" (such as it is) between a cross patriarchal and a cross of Lorraine. The two differ only by the position of the second and longer traverse, which is nearer the foot on the cross of Lorraine; Baron Alfgar's quotes indicate that the two are often confused. I can see recognizing the distinction in blazon, but allowing no heraldic difference. [BoE, 7 Jul 86, p.6]

A cross-millrind or cross miller is "a severer form, and perhaps one more akin to the original notion of the fer-de-moline" of a cross moline. (Parker 168) There are no points of difference between the two, but I see no harm in blazoning the artistic variation. [BoE, 6 Apr 86, p.1]

[Crosses of Canterbury.] These could also have been blazoned as crosses "patty potent globical quadrate", and I very nearly did so; but at the last minute, the poet in me rebelled. Spring is in the air, and the fit is upon me -- let me name but one Cross before I die! [BoE, 6 Apr 86, p.4]

A number of the commenting heralds characterized the cross [moline] disjoined as "thin-line heraldry", which is either discouraged or disallowed (depending on the degree) in SCA armory. The practice is, however, period; Parker notes instances of this cross (often referred to as a cross recercel‚ or sarcelly) and its relatives in medieval rolls of arms. . . . However, the cross needs to be used prominently, not as a single charge in base. [BoE, 6 April 86, p.10]

[Starcross.] Out of curiosity, I just pulled the file of ALAIN DU ROCHER (the defining instance of the SCA starcross), and found that the description quoted in Precedents I is misleading. The charge in question looks somewhat like a "Railroad Crossing" sign. [BoE, 16 Feb 86, p.12]

The authorities seem to agree (as do the examples pulled from the files) that the bottom crossbar on a "Russian" or "Russian orthodox" cross is bendwise sinister, not bendwise. [BoE, 14 Jul 85, p.8]

The cross of Cerd  (from the arms of Rodrigo de Cerd ) is an SCA invention, looking rather like a square with a notch cut out of each side and standing on one corner. [BoE, 5 Jan 85, p.11]

A cross botonny is only an artistic variation of a cross crosslet. [BoE, 5 Jan 85, p.19]

Whether or not the cross portate is period, it clearly does not take well to having charges placed around it. This device is badly unbalanced. [BoE, 31 Oct 84, p.17]

The patriarchal cross (often blazoned as a Cross Lorraine or an Archiepiscopal Cross) was usually used in ecclesiastical heraldry, but there are instances of its use in normal heraldry. (WvS [70] [LoAR 24 May 82], p. 2)

In the SCA, a Cross of Jerusalem is a cross potent between four crosses couped. (WvS [70] [LoAR 24 May 82], p. 1.) [This is the mundane usage as well.]

A straight tau cross looks like a capital T. A normal tau cross has formy arms. (WvS [65] [LoAR 15 Mar 82], p. 4)

[Cross annuletted.] Annuletted [sic] means each arm of the cross ends in an annulet. (WvS [63] [LoAR 26 Feb 82], p. 3.) [The forms given in the heraldry books are annulated and annuletty.]

A tau cross has concave arms. A cross couped in chief has straight arms and thus looks like the capital letter T. (WvS [61] [LoAR 17-18 Jan 82], p. 4)

A Latin saltire is a Latin cross bendwise. (WvS [59] [LoAR 21 Dec 81], p. 1)

It is better to call these mullets [of four points] than star-crosses, because that way they are grouped with mullets in the Ordinary rather than crosses. We already have another use for star-cross, anyway. (WvS [50] [LoAR 13 Aug 81], p. 5)

A cross sarcelled means its ends are split back towards the center (see Copinger's Heraldry Simplified, plate 69, $183, p. 66). (WvS [36] [LoAR 23 Feb 81], p. 1)

A Cross of Calatrava gules is the symbol of the Spanish Order of Calatrava, an order of knighthood. A Cross of Calatrava vert is the symbol of the Order ofAlcantara, another Spanish order of knighthood. (WvS [32] [LoAR 29 Dec 80], p.8.) [The submission was rejected for containing one of these charges.]

Formy and paty are the same thing. (WvS [25] [LoAR 16 Sep 80], p. 4)

A Bowen cross is a Bowen knot rotated 45 degrees to be in cross, with the loops straightened into straight lines and right angle bends. It looks like five mascles conjoined in cross. (WvS [23] [LoAR 27 Aug 80], p. 3)

Your [submission] violates the rule against astrological symbols because the cross within an annulet is the astrological symbol of Earth. A true sun cross has the annulet on the cross, so the arms of the cross extend beyond the annulet. (WvS [9] [LoAR 22 Jan 80], p. 9)

The patriarchal cross does not imply he has that rank. The only such cross we ever forbade for that reason is the Papal. (KFW, 30 Jun 79 [25], p. 8)

A Cross of Jerusalem in the S.C.A is a cross potent between four crosslets. (KFW, 30 Jun 79 [25], p. 16)

[Cross of Coldharbour.] This is a cross throughout, conjoined with an annulet centered thereon. (KFW, 30 Jun 79 [25], p. 23)

[Cross of Samildanach.] The blazon submitted was incomprehensible to anyone who had not seen the emblazon, so when we could not describe it we named it. (KFW, 30 Jun 79 [25], p. 38)

There are numerous versions of the Cross of Jerusalem. This is not any of them. Crosslets do not touch the cross potent. Blazon "a cross potent between four crosslets" or whichever other you want. (KFW, 30 Jun 79 [25], p. 73)

"Contrevoided" means the arms of the cross are voided and the center is solid (KFW, 10 Mar 78 [18], p. 7)

The cross of Jerusalem may be drawn with the plain crosslets inside or outside the cross potent, but they should not touch its arms ... With the arms touching ... the design is unclear and likely to be confusing at even a short distance. (KFW, 11 Aug 77 [14], p. 7)

[ Cross griffee-de-loup.] Griffee-de-loup means "wolf-clawed." (KFW, 16 Jun76 [6], p. 9)

A Cross of Cleves is a Latin Cross fleury. (IoL, 1 Sep 73 [70], p. 4)

[Celtic cross simple.] The Celtic Cross is, by definition, similar to the Latin Cross in shape. This Celtic Cross has the arms of equal leng[th], as the simple Cross, and is thus described as a Cross simple. (IoL, 30 Jun 73 [67], p. 3)

The Lord Banner vouches for the Coptic cross, which looks like a Zuni sun discwith single instead of triple rays, the vertical rays longer than the horizontal ones. (KFW, 11 Mar 73 [39], p. 1)

A Celtic Cross is of similar shape to the Latin Cross, and is not, unless specified,thr[ou]ghout. (IoL, 14 Jan 73 [58], p. 7)

A starcross, also called a millrind, looks like an asterisk; it is automatically couped. (KFW, 13 Feb 72 [24], p. 2) [According to Alfgar the Sententious, who handled this submission, the SCA starcross is "a figure consisting of a pale couped conjoined with a saltire couped, like an asterisk, or a straight mill-rind." The usage appears to be unique to SCA heraldry.]

[Cross quadrate by estoile.] A cross quadrate normally has a square placed across the junction; in this case a[n] estoile of four points has been placed that a point appears at each right angle of the cross. (KFW, 11 Apr 73 [40], p. 1) [This appears to be a misnomer. Quadrate means "having four sides and four angles square or rectangular." An estoile of four points cannot be quadrate.]

An unmodified cross is throughout by default. (KFW, 16 Jan 72 [22], p. 2)

[Cross potent rebated in annulo.] In plain terms, he wanted an ancient Indo-European sun disk, or fylfot, sometimes known as a swastika, a rounded version thereof. And there was great debate on all sides. It boiled down to this: nobody objected to the sun disk, and everybody objected to the word swastika, and so the blazon was carefully reworded. (KFW, 16 Jan 72 [22], p. 4) [The submissionwas approved.]

Lord Clarion noted that questions have been asked about crosses; that there is no restriction of shape of a cross, but that a papal cross or an arch[i]episcopal crossshould be born[e] only by a Pope or Archbishop, and there are by definition none in the Society, where all are laymen (as previously established in the case of Bp. N.). (HB, 7 Feb 71 [12], p. 2)


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