Difference between revisions of "Vair"

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One of the [[fur]]s used as a [[tincture]] ([[colour]]) in [[heraldry]]. It's a hard-to-describe regular pattern of blue (''[[azure]]'') and white (''[[argent]]''). The pattern is supposed to resemble [[squirrel]] pelts sewn together in alternating colors.
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One of the [[fur]]s used as a [[tincture]] ([[colour]]) in [[heraldry]]. It's a hard-to-describe regular pattern of blue (''[[azure]]'') and white (''[[argent]]''). The pattern is supposed to resemble [[squirrel]] pelts sewn together in alternating colors. It is found in a variety of colours, and appears in different arrangements, each with its own name.
   
 
[[image:vair.png|Vair pattern (British type; French would have the top row white)]]
 
[[image:vair.png|Vair pattern (British type; French would have the top row white)]]
   
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It goes back, as does [[ermine]], to a fur highly prized by the potentates of the [[Middle Ages]]. The word ''vair'' is derived from the Middle English forms ''veir'' and ''vair'', meaning ''variegated fur'' (from the French vair, itself from the [[Latin]] ''varius'', variegated).
External link - more than you ever wanted to know about vair: http://www.geocities.com/armoria/ABC/vairE.html
 
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The squirrel in question was apparently blue-grey on the back and white underneath, and was much used for the lining of cloaks. It was sewn together in alternating cup-shaped pieces of back and stomach fur, resulting in a pattern of grey-blue and grey-white which, when simplified in heraldic drawing and painting, became blue and white in alternating pieces. The species involved has never been accurately identified.
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<gallery>
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Image:Field_vair.png|<center>Vair
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Image:Field_countervair.png|<center>Counter-vair
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Image:Field_vairinpale.png|<center>Vair in pale
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Image:Field_vairenpointe.png|<center>Vair-en-pointe
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</gallery>
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In the oldest records vair is represented by means of straight horizontal lines alternating with vertical wavy or [[nebuly]] lines (sometimes blazoned as ''vair ond'' or ''vair ancien'').
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A fur of other colours than argent and azure is referred to as '''vairy''' (or '''vair''') of &lt;metal&gt; and &lt;colour&gt;
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===Trivia===
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In the Cinderella fairy tale, the slippers were of glass, but some 19th century French writers thought it was a mistake and there were supposed to be made of vair ("verre", ''glass'', is a paronym). Fact is slippers are ''really'' made of glass, not of vair. Disney has it true.
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===External link===
 
More than you ever wanted to know about vair: [http://www.geocities.com/armoria/ABC/vairE.html]
   
 
[[Category:Device heraldry]]
 
[[Category:Device heraldry]]

Revision as of 16:45, 21 February 2006