Heraldry - Components and Rules - Shield and Lozenge - Tinctures

Tinctures

Tinctures are the colors, metals, and furs used in heraldry, though the depiction of charges in their natural colors or "proper" are also regarded as tinctures, the latter distinct from any color that such a depiction might approximate. Heraldry is essentially a system of identification, so the most important convention of heraldry is the rule of tincture. To provide for contrast and visibility, metals (generally lighter tinctures) must never be placed on metals, and colors (generally darker tinctures) must never be placed on colors. Where a charge overlies a partition of the field, the rule does not apply. There are other exceptions – the most famous being the arms of the kingdom of Jerusalem, consisting of gold crosses on a silver field.

The names used in English blazon for the colors and metals come mainly from French and include Or (gold), argent (silver), azure (blue), gules (red), sable (black), vert (green), and purpure (purple). A number of other colors (such as bleu-celeste and the stains sanguine, tenné and murrey) are occasionally found, typically for special purposes.

Certain patterns called furs can appear in a coat of arms, though they are (rather arbitrarily) defined as tinctures, not patterns. The two common furs are ermine and vair. Ermine represents the winter coat of the stoat, which is white with a black tail. Vair represents a kind of squirrel with a blue-gray back and white belly. Sewn together, it forms a pattern of alternating blue and white shapes.

Heraldic charges can be displayed in their natural colors. Many natural items such as plants and animals are described as proper in this case. Proper charges are very frequent as crests and supporters. Overuse of the tincture "proper" is viewed as decadent or bad practice.

Read more about this topic:  Heraldry, Components and Rules, Shield and Lozenge

Other articles related to "tinctures, tincture":

Hatching System - Origins
... and Franquart it served as a natural method to designate tinctures of the arms ... Thus, it can be concluded that this way to designate the tinctures originated by all probability from the artists (copper plate engravers) and not the heralds ... so because tricking was a simpler way than hatching to designate the tinctures ...
Spanish Heraldry - Heraldic Regulation - Tinctures
... Tincture Heraldic name Spanish name Metals Gold/Yellow Or Oro Silver/White Argent Argén or Plata Colours Blue Azure Azur Red Gules Gules Purple ...
Tricking (heraldry) - Origin - The Gemstone-planetary Blason
... des Couleurs (1414), Courtois developed a heraldic system consisting of the tinctures, planets and carbuncles (furthermore, the virtues, metals, months, the ... of Seville, and also he gave the names of the tinctures in Greek ... titled Aspilogia the symbols of the planets to designate tinctures (presented in the table) ...
Tinctorial
... A tincture is typically an alcoholic extract of plant or animal material or solution of such or of a low volatility substance (such as iodine and mercurochrome) ... To qualify as an alcoholic tincture, the extract should have an ethanol percentage of at least 40–60% or 80–120 proof ... Sometimes even a 90% or 180 proof tincture is achieved ...
Hatching System - Additional Tinctures
... methods at table X of his above cited book, presenting hatching methods for some additional tinctures as well ... Some additional tinctures already appeared in the theory of heraldry in the early 15th century, which were then soon applied in practice ... Theodor Bernd (1775–1854) introduced hatching for some other tinctures such as Umbra (sienne, earth-color), Rotgelb (yellow-red, orange), Stahlblau (steel blue ...