Vetinari's Coat of Arms

Discussion in 'THE WATCH BOOKS' started by Hsing, Mar 15, 2006.

  1. Hsing Moderator

    In "Going Postal" (and other books before that, mainly Watch books) it says
    Which got me thinking a little, because on all the pictures I could find - for example in the Discworld companion - you could vaguely see something, black on black, so to say.

    I am referring to this pic:

    It may be coincidence, but I can make out a diagonal bar, which, in heraldry, could mean that you were a bastard acknowledged by the father, allowed to carry the name and step in as an heir, and the diagonal line was just added to the usual coat of arms.

    It happened quite often - the historical Leonardo da Vinci was such a case, I seem to remember.

    Do any of you more detailed or different description of the coat of arms? Or other pics?
  2. lord_vimes001 New Member

    I'm surprised, from what we learn of youthful Vetinari in Night Watch, that the shield is not green. But then, that would be revealing his invisibility secret, I guess.
  3. Watchman New Member

    It's only a comparatively small one, but there's a picture of the Vetinari coat of arms near the front in Feet of Clay. Not sure if there's any mention of it later on in the book as I only noticed it this morning when starting to re-read that one. Will let you know if I find anything :)
  4. lord_vimes001 New Member

    It occurs to me also that a green shield would be one of those bad sort of puns the coat of arms vampire loves.....the Vet of Vetinari punned in the Vert or Verdi of a green shield... although the noir of a black shield puns just as well with the nar so perhaps the shield should be green and black...?

    Gee, I have too much time on my hands...
  5. Tephlon Active Member

    In the Corgi paperback version of Feet of Clay it seems to me that there is something of a dagger or something hidden in the coat of arms of the Vetinari family.
    It also has a motto: "Si Non Confectus, Non Reficiat" ("If it ain't broke, don't fix it")

    Appearantly Vetinari isn't using the family coat of arms...
  6. lord_vimes001 New Member

    If there is something hidden in the shield, it's probably green...
    hidden, covered = co-vert, couvert, vetrir...
  7. Hsing Moderator

    Lord_vimes001, maybe you should let the heraldry books reat for a few hours and take a short walk... :)
  8. KaptenKaries New Member

    In swedish this diagonal bar is called "ginbalk", in english "bend sinister". I've found no information that this means an acknowledged bastard in Swedish heraldry. The meaning of different heraldic concepts varies from country to country.
  9. Watchman New Member

    Finished it on the way to work and sadly didnt notice any mention of the Vetinari coat of arms in the rest of the book, sorry.
  10. Hsing Moderator

    It does apply to huge parts of Middle Europe, France, and a few countries I don't remember from the top of my head...
    Not every diagonal line did mean something along those lines, mind you. Sometimes the colour made the difference, sometimes you could only tell when you compared it to the original.
    It just stuck when I stumbled upon it.
  11. KaptenKaries New Member

    I'm sure you know more about this than me. :) I'm totally lost when it comes to european heraldry and a haystraw from clueless in Swedish heraldry.
  12. Twoflower New Member

    Anyone know a good site for british heraldry? I cant find anything.
    *wants to make up a coat of arms*
  13. mr_scrub New Member

    What is his motto in english? Someting like "if _____ then dont____
  14. mr_scrub New Member

    Also somebody tell KaptenKaries its constable not constaple. This is a very stupid post made when I was a very stupid newbit. Please disregard it.

  15. mr_scrub New Member

    Sorry, I didn't notice that post earlier about the motto
  16. chrisjordan New Member

    mr_scrub, you can edit your post using the button to the top-right of it if you want to go back and add stuff in. Just leave a note in your post that you've done so.
  17. mr_scrub New Member

    Thanks I'll remember that.
  18. pyanfaruk New Member

  19. Mithras-Kosmokrator New Member

    Using a bend sinister in - English heraldry at least - to indicate bastardy is a myth. There have been held to be a number of marks meaning different forms of dishonour, but they are generally later inventions. Since arms themselves are a mark of honour, augmenting them with marks of dishonour defeats the object, rather.

    You might also be interested in "The Heraldry of the Disc" article I wrote for Discworld Monthly a while back:

    Part 1 - Discworld Monthly - Issue 88
    Part 2 - Discworld Monthly - Issue 89
  20. Hsing Moderator

    The idea that being of illegitimate birth, or being a bastard, was as such dishonoring is relatively modern, though. It wasn't the best position to be in, but more widely accepted than we would guess today, in nobility as well as in common people. (Around here it was fairly common to have children and marry years later, when you had the money to officially hold a household. No big problem.)

    The bend sinister -which often wasn't a full bend- was used in Western and Midlle Europe. Bertrand du Guesclin was one yielder of such an arm. Here you can see other examples:ôme.png
    (Sorry for the links, I have yet to get used to the new forum and all.)
    I've seen other example, namely German ones, in book form, but found none of them in the internet. Maybe stories of that practice swept over to England to form a myth. There is such a thing as felt history.

    Other than that, I think I shouls check Discworldmonthly more often. :)
  21. Buzzfloyd Spelling Bee

    Mr Scrub, did you delete the contents of the post, or was that first sentence the original contents? Because editing is fine, but we do ask people not to delete what they said apart from in very exceptional circumstances. This is due to a community history of troublemakers who would go back and change the record to make themselves look good and other people look bad. (Not saying you're trying to do that, just giving you the reason for the rule.)
  22. KaptenKaries New Member

    Perhaps I misspelt it on purpose, for dramatic effect? :)
  23. mr_scrub New Member

    Didn't I tell you to disregard it?
    It does sound better tho, and it's not there right now anyway.
  24. mr_scrub New Member

    No I didn't delete it I just told people to disregard it. I've already learnt that lesson.
  25. Buzzfloyd Spelling Bee

    OK, thanks for clarifying!

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