Black Lion’s Affirmation


The Affirmation is included on Scrolls that depict the Arms of the recipient

Being able to sign armigerous scrolls is a unique perk of being Principal Herald. But obtaining Black Lion’s signature for a scribal project has a few general requirements:

  1. Text is needed which indicates what Black Lion Principal Herald is attesting. For example: “By my sign and seal I, Black Lion Principal Herald, attest the arms blazoned above and so depicted are the true and correct arms of…”, or any of a number of suitable phrasings. If there is no formal achievement, Black Lion would be attesting just the name and blazon (not any casual image of the arms that might appear in passing). In such cases, the statement can simply refer to the blazon, and remain silent on depiction.
  2. The name on the scroll must be registered with that spelling. For example: “John” is not “Jonathan”, “Jane Doe” is not “Jane Doe of London”. The reason for this is that the changes between each of these provided room for someone else to register that form.
  3. The blazon in the text must be equivalent to that recorded in the Society O&A. Substituting equivalent yet unambiguous blazon typical of the time period is in keeping with the spirit of things: some kings of arms used “gold” rather than “Or”, and the Song of Caerlaverock was in verse.
  4. Any display of arms beyond incidental decoration must match the blazon. Diapering, exact proportions, shading, and so forth are within normal concepts of “artistic license”. Rendering charges as knotwork is not: limit knotwork to diapering.

To avoid issues at the last minute, you are greatly encouraged to work with Black Lion from the start of the project. Verification of registrations, spellings of names (including details often omitted in common use), copies of the registered artwork from the archives — all these are resources Black Lion happily provides to help ensure your scribal project can reach its full potential.

Absolutely send Black Lion photos and text to verify before ink is applied.

On occasion, the armory may be mis-blazoned in the O&A, and the Roll of Arms is not authoritative. Consult with Black Lion first, who can verify from the archives the actual artwork that was registered. Since we register and protect the original image, this gives an opportunity to verify blazon matches image, and if not to get it corrected.

While there is certainly leeway for artistry, the artistry must not go so far as to be blazonably different from the registered arms. A rampant beast should not be salient, heads can’t suddenly face a different direction, et cetera.

If the recipient of the scroll prefers to use a name other than that which is registered, the text must somehow tie the name used to the name registered. For example:

  • “John Loveday alias John Smythe of Shrewsbury”
  • “Alice the Pious, known also as Alice Robert”
  • “Alexander One-arm, sometime known as Ragnar Bjarnarson”
  • “Elizabeth Tanner, called Helga Hide-flayer”

Some variations are reasonable without such aliasing, inasmuch as they don’t introduce questions of someone else being able to register the name:

  • omitting or including accents in Old Norse names: Tóki vs Toki
  • substituting certain characters: Ælfwynn vs Aelfwynn, Þiálfason vs Thiálfason, Smiðsdóttir vs Smithsdottir
  • doubling certain characters, if the specific doubling pattern is documentable in that context: Ana vs Anna

When in doubt, work with Black Lion to find an approach to satisfy the signing requirements.

Examples of the Black Lion Principal Herald – Affirmation of Arms

I, Black Lion Principal Herald of An Tir, do attest that said arms have been duly registered with the College of Arms

I, Black Lion Principal Herald, do hereby attest by my signature that this document bears true arms.

Being required by The Crown of An Tir to make a search of the records of my office for the arms of the aforementioned gentle, I do find that they may lawfully bear the arms herein mentioned. In witness thereof I, Black Lion Herald, set my hand.

In obedience to the command of Their Majesties I have made search in the registers and records of my office and do find that the aforesaid (name of recipient) may lawfully bear these arms. In witness whereof I, Black Lion Principal set my hand and seal.

Black Lion Herald testifies that the armories depicted and blazoned herein belong to the aforenamed gentle to use, bear and show forth at all times.

By seal and signature, Black Lion Principal Herald testifies that the armories depicted and blazoned herein belong unto the said (name of recipient) to use, bear and show forth at all times

The Colllege of Arms, finding no impediment to the arms here emblazoned, assign their exclusive use to (name of recipient)

Veritis este – (this is true)

Verum est – (it is true)

NOTE: “Black Lion Principal Herald” is registered to the Kingdom of AnTir as the heraldic title of the Kingdom Herald. If “Black Lion Herald” were translated into another language, the College of Heralds would allow it to be registered by another group (as long as it did not sound like “Black Lion” when spoken). Thus, when creating a scroll in a foreign language the words “Black Lion” must remain untranslated.


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