Marshall Coat of Arms
I was doing a bit of research into the crest of Sir William Marshall and ran into a bit of ambiguity. I was wondering if anyone here could clear things up for me. Basic research suggests his crest was a red lion rampant on a gold and green shield, like so:
However, the sources are not as academic as I would like, so I'm looking for some validation. I also stumbled upon this article calling it into question or saying that it only represented his crest for a specific period:
can anyone confirm or give a source telling me whether the image I linked to is the man's coat of arms, and if so, for what part of his life?
I don't believe there was a formalised 'college of arms' at that time - so it could well be possible that he changed it more than once and simply wore what he liked.
Yeah, it's reasonable assume that the colors worn by Marshall on the tournament fields and during his time in the East, etc... Changed a lot. While he was serving as a trainer/protector for the young Prince Henry, for example, he probably wore royal colors rather than his own. While he served various other lords in team settings on the tourney fields, he probably had their colors associated as well. As far as his biography goes, it doesn't seem like he really lead a ton of teams himself - so that's just further evidence against his actually showing his own heraldry on the field.

In the melees that tournaments were during his time, being able to share colors with teammates was an advantage. After Marshall had accomplished a certain level of notoriety, it's plausible that using his individual heraldic colors and symbols would have been enough to let others know who he was on the field. But it would also make him a major target - something he may have wanted to avoid, or else obviously flaunt himself as, depending on the situation of the day.

I believe there is some mention of identifying lords by their arms in the writings of Chrétien de Troyes, who was writing circa 1170 to 1190, so it is not inconceivable that that William Marshall had his own arms at this time.
The crest as you state it is the same as painted on the wall at Chepstow castle where William lived. Hope this helps.[/b]

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