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About the spelling of words found on this site


Often spelling 'errors' on the site are pointed out to us, when on a page like this the error is a likely a simple typing error that we will correct but in cases that we are citing a historic source, we reproduce unusual words and spellings as we find them. Spellings were not standardized when many of our source documents were printed and even to this day they vary by country. For new material we are tending towards American spellings but older parts of the site preferred Canadian or British spellings, we do not intend to hunt down inconsistent spellings throughout the site, we have users from all over the world, we could never make everyone happy. 

Heraldry specific terms very frequently originated from non-English words, with French and Latin being the main sources. Historically, many of the words' spellings were changed at the whim of the writer or printer and are often found both with and without diacritical marks. Our heraldry dictionary often lists three or more common spellings for many of the terms. We try to retain the spellings that were used in antiquarian documents as there are cases where that can provide information about the age or local origin of a passage and is some cases heraldic writers in different countries may have used terms with slightly different meanings. However we may drop or miss diacritical marks and we do make typing errors. If you need to verify something is exactly correct for academic purposes, contact us, we can try to check our source material and provide an image of the original. Keep in mind that much of the material on this site is the work of our founder F. Mike Hamilton (deceased), and his 40 years of heraldry experience.

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