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Armorial Gold's Heraldry Dictionary

This heraldry dictionary is based on the works of Elvin (edited by Marvin Beatty) from his original manuscript of 1879. Corrections have been made, and additions from the Armorial Gold Library have been added. You are welcome to use this heraldry dictionary as a reference tool without fee. This is copyrighted material and as such may not be reproduced in "any way" without the expressed written permission of Armorial Gold. Thank You for your Cooperation.

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Heraldry Dictionary Section O 

O. This letter stands for Or (gold), in sketches.

Oak. A Tree, the Oak and parts of it are variously borne, and of very frequent use in Coat Armour. An Oak branch fructed should consist of four leaves; if unquoted, of nine; a sprig should have five leaves, and a slip only three. The Oak Tree is the emblem of virtue and strength.

Oar. A long pole with a flat thin end, by which vessels are driven along in the water.

Oats. A grain.

Obsidional Crown or Garland. See Crown Obsidional. This Crown was made of grass and twigs of trees interwoven.

Octofoil. A double quaterfoil, in distinction of houses.

Ocularium. The narrow opening for sight in the helmet.

Odimoliont Fish. See Remora, Officers of Arms.

Official Arms. See Arms of Office.

Oge or Bouse. A Water-bouget.

Ogress. The same as Pellet, representing a ball or flint-stone for cannon.

Olive-Crown. See Crown-Olive.

Olive-Guttee de. See Gutté.

Olive-Tree and Olive-Branches. Are of very common occurrence as Heraldic bearings.

Ombre. Shadowed. See Adumbrated.

Ongle. A term for the claws of birds or beasts; the same as armed.

On. Placed upon as "On a Fesse three lozenges."

Open-Crowns. The Ducal-coronet when borne as a charge in the arms is sometimes blazoned "Open Crown."

Opiate-Rod. See Caduceus.

Opinicus. A beast with the body and fore legs of a lion, the head, neck and wings of an eagle, with the tail of a camel. It is sometimes borne "sans wings."

Oppressed or Oppressing. The same as Debruised, or Surmounted. See Debruised.

Or. Gold or yellow. See Tinctures. The term Gold may be used in blazoning a coat. In engraving, "Or" is expressed by dots.

Orange. A roundle tenné. See also Tenné.

Orarium. A Banderole.

Orb-Golden. See Mound.

Orb. The Globe.

Orbicular. Circular.

Orbit. Round or Circle.

Orders. See Distinguished Service Order. There are two Orders confined to Ladies; The Order of Victoria and Albert, and The Imperial Order of the Crown of India. Members are entitled to no special precedence.

Order of St. John of Jerusalem. See Hospitallers.

Orders of Knighthood. See Knighthood.

Ordinaries. So called because they are the most ancient and common amongst the various cognizances used in Heraldry, are divided (although on this point the opinions of Heralds are greatly at variance) into the honourable and subordinaries, which are all subject to the accidental forms of the lines composing them, as engrailed, invecked, etc. The honourable ordinaries according to the present practice should always occupy one third of the field, and are the Bend, Bend Sinister, Chevron, Chief, Cross, Fesse, Pale, Quarter, and Saltier, which, with thier diminutives, will be found under their proper heads. All ordinaries may be charged; i.e. have figures upon them, their diminutives should not, but in many shields they are charged with figures. See Diminutives.

Ordinary of Arms. Heraldic Bearings, classified and arranged in accordance with the charges, and having the name of the bearer attached.

Oreille. Eared.

Oreiller. A cushion, or pillow.

Organ Rest. See Rest.

Orarium or Vexillum. See Banderoll.

Oriental-Crown. See Eastern-Crown.

Oriflam, Oriflamme or Oriflambe. A square banner, made of flame coloured silk, and always appeared at the head of the French armies, from the 12th to the 15th century. See Auriflamme.

Orle. One of the subordinaries is composed of lines passing round the shield, forming an inner border, and derive its name from Ourler to hem. The Orle is subject to all the accidental forms of Lines as Engrailed, Invecked, etc.

Ostrich, And parts of it, are common bearings in Coat Armour. The Ostrich is usually represented in Heraldry with horse-shoe or key in its mouth. Ostrich Feathers are borne single, and in plumes.

Otter. An amphibious animal.

Ounce. A fierce animal (likened to a Leopard).

Over. The word over in Heraldry must never be taken to mean above, but upon.

Over-All. Surmounted.

Overt or Overture. Terms applicable to the wings of birds, etc., when spread open on either side of the head as if taking flight. It is also applied to inanimate things, as a purse overt; i.e. an open purse.

Overture-Elevated. Differs from the last by having the points of the wings elevated.

Owl. The owl is always depicted full faced, and is the emblem of prudence and wisdom.

Ox. Beast of Burden. As borne in the arms of the city of Oxford. The Arms of Oxenden.

 

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The Heraldry Dictionary by Armorial Gold Heraldry Services is provided as a free resource tool for Heraldry enthusiasts. The Heraldry Dictionary and the information contained therein, has been researched through original manuscripts and Armorial Gold’s own sources.  Reproduction in any form is prohibited. All rights reserved.