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hast thou crowned us), being part of the last verse of the Fifth Pealm as it appears in the Vulgate."
The meaning or significance of heraldic devices is often obscure. Derived, probably, in their simpler forms, from the usual methods of constructing, strengthening or adorning shields, they early came to be availed of as a means of identification on the field of battle, and heralds exercised their ingenuity in discovering or inventing meanings for the various figures. In the first and fourth quarters of the shield will be easily recognized a construction similar to that ordinarily used in making a gate in a board fence,-a transverse piece binding the vertical boards together. But in it the fancy of the heralds discovered the pales forming a palisado, indicating a fortified place; and in the diagonal piece, or bend, they discerned the likeness of a scaling ladder ; so that the design was deemed appropriate to one who had successfully assailed a fortified place. The second and third quarters, the figure of which forms a cross, was conceived to be a device appropriate to a crusader, or other Christian warrior ; while the cross bottony, (boutonnée, or budding) was deemed proper to indicate the virtues of a youthful warrior, whereas a cross flory (flowered) the ends of which resembled an open lily or fleur-de-lis, would belong to one in his maturity. So much for heraldic fancies and imagination. The whole design is in fact one of a beautiful and compound symmetry, each quarter bearing a figure composed of the original colors of the field, or background, counterchanged or transposed; while the sombre effect of the gold ? and black, is brilliantly contrasted by that of the silver and red; and the diagonal lines and acute angles of the one are offset by the rectangles and curves of the other.
Upon this Seal the surrounding mantle is represented as having
1 The rendering in the Authorized English Version is, —" with favour wilt thou compass him as with a shield.” Marginal reading,—“crown him.”
? It is to be noted that the Maryland colors are gold and black, not orange and black. The latter are the colors of Princeton University, “Old Nassau.” The writer was informed by a gentleman connected with one of the newspapers, that the persistent error of ascribing to Maryland the colors orange and black was due to an ignorant assumption that the word or (gold) was an abbreviation of the word orange.
the arms broidered upon it, their edges showing where the folds of the mantle disclose the exterior. The arms that have been described continued in use during the Colonial period upon the Seal of the Lords Proprietary, and except during the sway of the royal governors, from 1692 to 1715, the Seal upon which they were engraved was the Great Seal for the Province. It was continued in use by the State of Maryland (by a resolution adopted in 1776) until 1794, when it was superseded by a new Seal of very bad design. Other seals followed, but in later years the interest attaching to the old colonial arms was recognized. In 1854 an unsuccessful attempt at this restoration was made, and in 1876, the centennial year of the American Republic, the Legislature of Maryland by joint resolution, ordered their complete restoration upon the Great Seal of the State.
The Colonial Seal was affixed to documents pendent, with obverse and reverse, but from an early date it was the custom to attach the Seal reversed, so that what was intended as the under side became familiar as the arms of Maryland. In the resolution directing the restoration of the ancient arms, the device to be cut upon the Seal was fully and minutely specified, the description being taken from Lord Baltimore's letter of commission which accompanied the Great Seal in 1648, and from those contained in books treating of family coats of arms.
Nine years later, in 1885, the Colonial Seal itself was unexpectedly discovered in a loft of the old Treasury building, standing in State House Circle, near the head of Maryland Avenue, which is supposed to be the oldest building in Annapolis.
There the Seal had lain forgotten for nearly a century. Its discovery makes it possible to measure the accuracy with which the reverse side of the old Seal has been reproduced from description. The differences as shown in the two windows to the right and the left are chiefly such as result from the different treatment of the same subject by different artists.
But in the crest, a very curious complexity of differences is to be observed, sufficient to justify comment and explanation.
In the old Seal the pennons fly toward the right hand, as is usual, but contrary to established usage the black pennon leads the
gold. The staves are of gold, and the ducal coronet from which they issue, red.
In the present Seal these conditions are reversed in every particular. The pennons fly to the left hand, the gold leading, the staves are red, and the ducal coronet gold.
In the exemplification of arms issued to Sir George Calvert? (afterwards created Lord Baltimore) and dated December 3, 1822, the crest is described as follows :-“the upper parte or halues of two Launces the bandroll of the first Sables and the second, or," which standing in a ducal crown, gules, (red), is declared to be “the auntient Creast descended vnto him from his auncestors" and is so “ depicted in the margent” of the document to which special reference is made.
In the resolution of the General Assembly adopted in 1876, the crest is described as follows :- _" on a ducal coronet proper, two pennons, dexter or, the other sable; staves gules.”
This description was taken from works on heraldry generally accepted as authentic, and the curious transposition both of the colors, and the direction in which the pennons fly, can only be accounted for upon the theory that some copyist, observing the unusual fact that the sable, or black pennon, preceded the gold, noted the fact of transposition and hence inferred a general transposition of colors and direction throughout the description of the crest, an error which was adopted and followed by subsequent writers.
To the restoration of these arms with the Earl's coronet, indicative of Palatinate authority, no political significance whatever is to be attached. It is merely a recognition of the past, and of a history, during the colonial period of the commonwealth, to which a special interest is attached on account of the peculiar constitution of the Province. Its restoration means only, while it shows emphatically, “that whatever the changes by which its political
1 Maryland Historical Society, Calvert Papers No. 1, page 38. This exemplification of arms is now in the possession of the Society.
? E. g., Edmondson's Complete Body of Heraldry, Vol. II. Name, Calvert. The direction and colors of the pennons are reversed in an illustration contained in Guillim's Display of Heraldry.
constitution has been affected, the identity of the commonwealth has never been destroyed, and its continuity remains unbroken.” i
It may be well to add that there was another Great Seal prepared for Maryland during the colonial period which never went into use and of which no impressions exist. This was in 1658, when Lord Baltimore confided to Josias Fendall, whom he appointed Governor, a Seal to be used if he failed to recover the old Seal which was then in the possession of the commissioners appointed by Parliament. But the old Seal was surrendered to him. It is probable that this provisional Seal of 1658 bore the motto Crescite et Multiplicamini which was long current in the Province and the State and which appears upon the representation of the arms printed on the title page of Bacon's compilation of the laws of Maryland, published in 1765. This conjecture is justified by the fact that this motto appears upon the coins which Lord Baltimore had struck during the following year, (1659), in an attempt to provide a stable currency for the Province, and perhaps had its origin in the purpose, mentioned by Bozman in his History of Maryland, of the first Lord Baltimore, to call the Province “ Crescentia,” subsequently changed to “ Terra Mariae," or MaryLand, in honor of Queen Henrietta Maria, wife of Charles I, King of England.
On the present Great Seal, the second word of the motto FATTI MASCHI, PAROLE FEMINE (an ancient Italian proverb, signifying “Deeds are males, words are females ") is spelled Maschi. This is the way it was spelled in Lord Baltimore's letter of commission, and in many publications, including the representation of the arms contained in Guillim’s Display of Heraldry. Upon the Colonial Seal the Italian word is more correctly spelled Muschi.
1 Great Seal of Maryland. Maryland Historical Society, Fund Publication No. 23, printed 1886. This paper contains a complete history of the several Great Seals that have been used in Maryland.
• This wood-cut contains a number of errors, some of which were, as well as the motto, reproduced in the Seal adopted in 1854.
The Blakistone family of Maryland descends from the Blakistons of Newton Hall, a branch of the ancient family of Blakiston of Blakiston in the Palatinate of Durham. An elaborate pedigree, published in Surtees' History of Durham (iii, 162 ff., 402), carries the line back to the year 1341, and from this pedigree the earlier portion of the following genealogy is derived. The arms and crest, as given by the same authority, are as follows:
Arg., two bars, and in chief three dunghill cocks, gu.
The immediate ancestor of the Maryland family was
1. REV. MARMADUKE BLAKISTON of Newton Hall, fifth son of John Blakiston of Blakiston by his first wife Elizabeth, daughter and coheir of Sir George Bowes of Dalden and Streatham, Knt. He was Vicar of Woodborne, Rector of Redmarshall in 1585, Rector of Sedgefield in 1599, and Prebendary of Durham, and was buried at St. Margaret's, Crossgate, 3 Sept. 1639. He married, at St. Mary-le-Bow, 30 June 1595, Margaret James, and she was buried at St. Margaret's, 10 March 1636. Rev. Marmaduke Blakiston and Margaret (James) his wife had issue as follows:
i. TOBYE BLAKISTON,2 of Newton Hall, eldest son. His will, dated 24
2. ii. JOHN BLAKISTON, bapt. 21 Aug. 1603.
iii. REV. THOMAS BLAKISTON, A. M., Vicar of North Allerton, 1628, Prebendary of Wistow; ejected during the Civil wars 1640/1; mar. and had issue.
iv. REV. ROBERT BLAKISTON, bapt. 7 Jany. 1607; Rector of Sedgefield and Prebendary of Durham on the resignation of his father in 1631; mar. Elizabeth dau. of John Howson, Bishop of Durham; d. s. p. and was buried, 19 Jan. 1634/5, in Durham Abbey.
v. REV. RALPH BLAKISTON, A. M., bapt. 24 June 1608; Rector of Ryton, Co. Pal.; d. unmar. and was buried at Ryton 30 Jan. 1676/7.
vi. HENRY BLAKISTON of Old Malton, Co. York; d. 1666; mar. Mary dau. of Wm. Mauleverer of Arncliffe, Co. York: issue three daughters.