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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 W

Wagon. A four-wheeled carriage.

Wales, Arms of. Quarterly or. and gu. four Lions passant guardant counter changed.

Wales, Badge of. A Dragon passant.

Walled or Murallee. Covered with a representation of Masonry.

Wallet. See Scrip.

War-Crie, Cri-de-guerre. See Motto and Cri-de-Guerre.

War Medals. See Medals.

War-Wolf. Also termed a Were-Wolf, Wher-Wolf or Wolf-Man. As borne by the name of Dickeson, or Dickison. Supposed to be a man living a wolf's nature. A genus I imagine far from being extinct.

Warden. A pear; sometimes so called in armory, borne by the name of Warden, in allusion to the name.

Wassail-Bowl. Same as Bowl.

Wastel-Cakes. Round cakes of bread. According to Guillim, the same as Torteaux. See Manchet.

Water. There are two ways of representing this in Heraldry; anciently, it was symbolized by the field, or a portion of it being barry wavy, argent, and azure. It is now however frequently borne proper.

Water-Bubbles. See Bubble.

Water-Bouget or Water-Budget. A vessel anciently used by soldiers for the conveyance of water to the camp. The Water-Budget is depicted in different ways. See Water Bags.

Water-Bags or Pair of Dossers. Also termed Water-bags, hooped together, and borne by the name of Banister.

Water-Lizard. See Asker.

Water-Pot. A fontal, called a Scatebra, out of which naiads and river-gods are represented as pouring the waters of rivers, over which they are fabled to preside.

Water-Spaniel. See Spaniel.

Watery. The same as Wavy or Undée.

Wattled. When the gills of a Cock, or Cockatrice, are of a different tincture from the head it is said to be Wattled.

Waved. Same as Wavy.

Wear, Weare or Weir. A dam or fence against water, made with stakes and twigs of osier, wattled, or interwoven. By some Heralds, termed a Haie.

Weasel. A small carnivorous quadruped.

Weather-Cock or Vane, as borne in the arms of Fitz-Alwyn, the first Mayor of London.

Wedge or Stone-Bill. A tool used to split timber.

Weel. Or Fish-Weel, for catching fish.

Weir. See Wear.

Welk, Weike, Whelk or Wilke. A shellfish, borne by the name of Shefley.

Welt. Or edge. A narrow bordure.

Welted. Or edged. Having a narrow bordure. Observe the difference between Edged and Fimbriated.

Were. An old term for Vair, or Varry.

Wervels or Varvells. See Vervels.

Wharrow-Spindle. An instrument formerly used by women to spin with, whilst walking, by sticking the distaff in their girdles, and whirling round the spindle pendent to the thread. Borne by the name of Clinton.

Wheat. Of frequent use in Armory. When in a sheaf it is termed a Garb.

Wheat Big. An old provincial term for Barley borne by the name of Bigland.

Wheat Guinea, An Ear of. A kind of bearded wheat similar to the last, borne by the name of Graindorge.

Wheat-Sheaf. A Garbe, or Garb. See Garb.

Wheel. Or Cart Wheel. Demi, or half wheels, are wheels divided pale-ways; three such are borne by the name of Wheeler.

Wheel Shuttle. See Shuttle.

Whet-Herys. An old term for Wheat ears.

Whintain. See Quintain.

Whips Stringed and Knotted. As in the Arms of Crow-land Abbey. Also termed a Scourge.

Whirlpool. Or Gurges. Represents "water, argent and azure, and invariably covers the whole field, borne by the name of Gorges. The family of Chellery bear ar, a whirlpool gu. The Whirlpool is sometimes represented by a number of rings one within another.

White. A word used instead of Argent, for the lining of Mantles, which is of a pure white fur, which some call the livits skin. White is used in painting for argent, or silver.

White Ensign or St. George's Ensign. See Ensign.

Whiting. A fish.

Whittal's or Wittal's Head. A man's head with short horns.

Wild-Boar. See Boar.

Wild-Cat. See Cat a Mountain.

Wild-Man. See Savage.

Wallow. Or Salix. A Willow tree.

Wimble. See Wine-Piercer.

Windsor Herald. See Heralds College.

Wine-Piercer. Or Wine-Broach. An instrument to tap wine casks.

Wing. A single wing is termed in Armory a Demi vol; and two wings when endorsed are termed a Vol. Wings are always undertood to be those of the eagle unless named otherwise.

Wing-Sinister. The same as demi vol.

Winged. Having wings, or adorned with wings.

Winnowing Basket. Or Shruttle.

Wisalls or Wisomes. The leaves or tops of carrots, parsnips, or other edible roots; are so blazoned by Randle Holme.

Withered Branch. Also termed a Starved branch.

Withered Tree. Blighted or starved.

Within. When an ordinary, or charge is entirely surrounded by anything, it is said to be within.

Wittal's Head. A man's head with short horns, couped below the shoulders.

Wiure, Wyer, Viure and Viurie. A narrow fillet, generally nebuly, it may be placed in bend, in fesse, or otherwise.

Wivre or Vivre. A Diminutive of the dancette. See Vivre.

Wivern, Wiveron or Wyvern. An imaginary animal, the upper part resembling what is called a Dragon; with two legs; and the lower, a serpent.

Wolf, Marine. The seal.

Wolf-Were, or Wolf-Man. See War-Wolf.

Woman. Woman's head, and demi-woman; also blazoned by the term Lady. A woman's head and neck when couped below the breast, the head wreathed with a garland of roses, and crowned with an antique crown is always blazoned a maiden's head. When the hair is depicted as loosely flowing, it is termed dishevelled; as the Crest of Ellis, viz., a woman naked, her hair dishevelled ppr. See also term Lady.

Woman's Breast, Distilling Drops of Milk. Borne by the name of Dodge and Piddock.

Wood or Hurst. A small group of trees.

Woodcock. A bird of passage.

Woodman. The same as Wild-Man or Savage.

Woodmartin. See Martin.

Woodpecker. A bird.

Woodwift. The same as Wild-Man or Savage.

Wool-Card. An instrument for carding wool.

Words. Are used as charges in many Coats of Arms. e.g. Netherlands in the Arms of Jones, Bart. Trafalgar in the Arms of Collingwood. Orthes, in those of Harvey, etc.

Wound. A term used by Bossewell, to express the roundle when tinctured purpure.

Wounded. See Vulned.

Woydyd. Same as Voided.

Woydyrs. Old term for four quarters.

Wrapped, Wrapt, Enwrapped or Enveloped. The same as Entwined.

Wreath, Torse or Torce. Is a garland, chaplet, or attire for the head. The wreath, upon which the Crest is placed, is of silk, composed of two different tinctures twisted together, and showing six folds, three of each tincture, and the tinctures of the wreath are with few exceptions, those first mentioned in blazoning the coat of arms. The Wreath is placed between the helmet and the crest which are fastened together by it. In some instances crowns or coronets supply the place of the wreath, but Crests are always understood to be placed upon a wreath, when not ordered to be borne upon a Crown, Coronet, Cap, or Chapeau. When a wreath composed of silk, is placed round the temples of a man, it should have two bows with strings at the sinister end.

Wreathed. Encircled with a wreath; as a head wreathed. Savages are frequently wreathed about the temples and loins with oak leaves, ivy, etc., but laurel leaves are always understood if not mentioned to the contrary. Ordinaries are sometimes wreathed, as a Fesse wreathed or tortile gules and azure.

Wren. A small insessorial bird.

Wrincle-Shell. See Welk.

Wyn. A vane or little flag.

Wyvern. See Wivern.

Wyvre. A Viper.



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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.