European Shield Brooch with Crest: In heraldry, or known as a coat of arms is a distinctive design painted on a shield, the term is also broadly applied to the heraldic achievement consisting of the shield and certain accessories (the design is a symbol unique to a person, family, corporation or state). Historically, armorial bearings were first used by feudal lords and knights in the mid-twelfth century on battlefields as a way to identify allied from enemy soldiers. As the uses for the heraldic designs expanded, other social classes who never would march in battle began to assume arms for themselves. Initially, those closest to the lords and knights adopted arms, such as persons employed as squires that would be in common contact with the armorial devices. Then priests and other ecclesiastical dignities adopted coats of arms, usually to be used as seals and other such insignia, and then towns and cities to likewise seal and authenticate documents. However, in most of continental Europe, citizens freely adopted armorial bearings.Because of their importance in identification, particularly in seals on legal documents, the use of arms was strictly regulated; few countries continue in this today. This has been carried out by heralds and the study of coats of arms is therefore called "heraldry". LifestyleAntiques.com is the web site where one can shop on line or if you are in the area we are an antique dealer in Summerland, California just 3 minutes south of Santa Barbara. Specializing in European Antique Furniture and our accent is antique lighting for your home, or office with handmade parchment shades adorning the selection of unique lamps. We specialize in Decorative Arts and French furniture as well as antique furniture from Spain and Italy, you will find the shop warm and inviting.
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