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Second draft grants of arms based on John Shakespeare’s and William Shakespeare’s applications for acquiring a coat of arms (1596)
October 20,
1596
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Record Shakespeare Draft Grant of Arms 2 (formerly MS Vincent 157, no. 24)

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Record Shakespeare Draft Grant of Arms 2 (formerly MS Vincent 157, no. 24)
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Terms of use
The College of Arms has graciously contributed images from their collections to Shakespeare Documented, and retains sole ownership of said images. Visitors may link to and cite the images within Shakespeare Documented in personal research only. Any further use, including, but not limited to, unauthorized downloading or distribution of the images is strictly prohibited. Visitors must contact the College of Arms to request additional use: by email at: enquiries@college-of-arms.gov.uk; by telephone: (+44)20 7248 2762; or by post at: Officer in Waiting, College of Arms, 130 Queen Victoria Street, London, UK, EC4V 4BT

Document-specific information
Creator: Sir William Dethick, Garter King of Arms
Title: Second draft grants of arms based on John Shakespeare’s and William Shakespeare’s applications for acquiring a coat of arms (1596)
Date: October 20, 1596
Repository: College of Arms, London, UK
Call number and opening: Record Shakespeare Draft Grant of Arms 2 (formerly MS Vincent 157, no. 24)

Item Creator
Sir William Dethick, Garter King of Arms
Item Title
Second draft grants of arms based on John Shakespeare’s and William Shakespeare’s applications for acquiring a coat of arms (1596)
Item Date
October 20, 1596
Repository
College of Arms, London, UK
Call Number
Record Shakespeare Draft Grant of Arms 2 (formerly MS Vincent 157, no. 24)

Institution Rights and Document Citation

Terms of use
The College of Arms has graciously contributed images from their collections to Shakespeare Documented, and retains sole ownership of said images. Visitors may link to and cite the images within Shakespeare Documented in personal research only. Any further use, including, but not limited to, unauthorized downloading or distribution of the images is strictly prohibited. Visitors must contact the College of Arms to request additional use: by email at: enquiries@college-of-arms.gov.uk; by telephone: (+44)20 7248 2762; or by post at: Officer in Waiting, College of Arms, 130 Queen Victoria Street, London, UK, EC4V 4BT

Document-specific information
Creator: Sir William Dethick, Garter King of Arms
Title: Second draft grants of arms based on John Shakespeare’s and William Shakespeare’s applications for acquiring a coat of arms (1596)
Date: October 20, 1596
Repository: College of Arms, London, UK
Call number and opening: Record Shakespeare Draft Grant of Arms 2 (formerly MS Vincent 157, no. 24)

Two draft grants of arms survive from the 1596 application, both dated October 20, 1596, and both in the handwriting of William Dethick, the most senior of the 13 heralds of the College of Arms. The drafts describe the arms as "gold, on a bend sable [black], a spear of the first, the point steeled argent [silver]." The crest above the arms consists of a "falcon, his wings displayed, argent, standing on a wreath of his colors, supporting a spear gold, steeled argent." The second draft’s neater script and format, together with the fact that it incorporates some of the changes made to the first, suggest that it was intended as the model to be followed for the official copy, known as the letters patent. Shakespeare’s motto Non sanz droict (Not without right) is included on the drafts, although mottoes were not part of grants of arms and did not need to be recorded. See the description of the first draft for further details.

Modernized/Translated transcriptions

Shakespere

Non sanz droict

[coat of arms]

To all and singular Noble and Gentlemen, of what estate, degree, bearing Arms to whom these presents shall come. William Dethick, Garter principal King of Arms, sendeth greetings. Knowe ye that whereas by the authority and ancient privileges pertaining to my office from the Queen's most excellent majesty and by her highness's most noble and victorious progenitors, I am to take general notice and record and to make declaration and testimony for all causes of Arms and matters of gentlemen through all her Majesty's kingdoms, dominions, principalities, isles, and provinces. To the end that as many gentlemen by their ancient names of families, kindreds, and descents have and enjoy certain ensigns and coats of arms, so it is very expedient in all ages that some men for their valiant facts, magnanimity, virtue, dignities, and deserts may use and bear such tokens of honor and worthiness. Whereby their name and good fame may be the better known and divulged, and their children and posterity (in all virtue to the service to the service of their prince and country) encouraged. Wherefore being solicited and by credible report informed that John Shakespeare of Stratford-upon-Avon in the county of Warwickshire [damage] parent[s] [damage] antecessors. Grandfather for his faithful and valiant [damage] Prince King Henry the seventh of [damage] continued in these parts being of good reputation [damage] the said John hath married the daughter [damage] county, esquire, and for the encouragement of his posterity aforesaid to whom the [damage] ancient custom of the laws of arms may descend. I the said Garter [damage] of Arms have assigned, granted, and by these presents confirmed: This shield [damage] of Arms. viz. Gold, on a bend sable, a spear of the first steeled argent, and for his [damage] crest or cognizance a falcon, his wings displayed argent, standing on a wreath of his colors, supporting a spear gold, steeled as aforesaid, set upon a helmet with mantels and tassels as hath been accustomed and doth more plainly appear depicted on this margent. Signifying hereby and by the authority of my office aforesaid, ratifying that it shall be lawful for the said John Shakespeare, gent., and for his children, issue, and posterity (at all times and places convenient) to bear and make demonstration of the said blazon or achievement upon their shields, targets, escucheons, coats of arms, pennons, guidons, seals, rings, edifices, buildings, utensils, liveries, tombs, or monuments, or otherwise for all lawful war-like facts or civil use or exercises, according to the laws of arms and customs that to gentlemen belongeth, without let or interruption of any other person or persons for use or bearing the same. In witness and perpetual remembrance hereof I have hereunto subscribed my name and fastened the seal of my office endorsed with the signet of my Arms. At the office of Arms London the 20th day of October the 38th year of the reign of our sovereign Lady Elizabeth by the grace of God Queen of England, France, and Ireland, defender of the faith, etc. 1596.

This John.  A pattern thereof under Clarenceux Cook's hand in paper 20 years past.

A Justice of peace and was bailiff, officer, and chief of the town of Stratford-upon-Avon 15 or 16 years past.

That he hath lands and tenements of good wealth and substance, 500 pounds. 

That he mar[ried] [damage] 

Semi-diplomatic transcription

Shakespere

Non Sanz droict

[coat of arms]

To all and singuler Noble, and Gentilmen: of what Estate, degree, bearing
Arms to whom these presentes shall come.  William Dethick Garter princip[al]
king of Arms sendethe greetinges.  Knowe Yee. that whereas by the authority[e]
and auncyent pryveleges perteyning to my office ffrom the Quenes most excellent
Maiestie and by her highnesse most noble & victorious Progenitors. I am to tak[e]
generall notice & record for and bec to make demonstracion ^ declaration & testemonie for all causes of
Arms and matters of Gentlemen thoroughe all her Maiesties kingdoms, dominions, Principalities, Isles,
and Provinces. To th'end that as some men manie gentelmeby theyre auncyent names of families,
kyndredes, & descentes have & enioye certeyne enseignes & cottes of Arms So it is ve[rie]
expedient ^ in all tymes Ages that some men for theyr valeant factes, magnanimite, vertu, dignites & des[ertes]
maye have vse & beare suche tokens of honor and worthinesse. Whereby theyre Name & good fame may[e]
be the better knowen & divulged. and theyre Children & posterite (in all vertu to the service of theyre
Prynce & Contrie) encouraged: Wherefore being solicited and by credible report [info]rmed. Th[at]
John Shakespeare of Stratford vppon Avon in the Countie [of] Co War Warwike [damage] parent[es] [damage]
[damage] antecessors. Grandfather were for theyr his faithfull & va[leant] [damage]
[damage] Prince King Henry the seventhe o[f] [damage]
[damage] [t]hose partes) continewed ^ in these partes being of good reputacion [damage]
[damage] [s]aid John hathe maryed the daughter [damage]
[damage] Counte gent. esquire and for the encouragement of his posterite aforesaid to whom ^ [th] [damage]
[damage] [a]uncyent Custome of the Lawes of Arms maye descend.  I have the said G[arter] [damage]
[damage] of Arms have assigned, graunted, and by these presentes confirmed: This shie[ld] [damage]
[damage] of Arms. viz. Gould. on A Bend Sables. a Speare of the first steeled argent. And for his [damage]
Creast or Cognizance a falcon. his winges displayed Argent. standing on a wrethe of his Coullors. supp[orting]
A Speare Gould. steeled as aforesaid sett vppon a helmett and with mantelles ^ & tasselles as hathe ben accustomed and dothe mo[re]
playnely appeare depicted on this margent: Signefieing hereby hereby & by the authorite afforesaid of my
office aforesaid Ratefieing that it shalbe lawfull for the said John Shakespeare. gent. and for his cheldren
 yssue & posterite (at all tymes ^ & places convenient) to beare and make demonstracion of the said Blazon or Atchevment
vppon theyre Shieldes, Targetes, escucheons, Cotes of Arms, ^ Creastes or Cognizances pennons, Guydons. Seales, Ringes, sEdifiteses, Edefices Buyldinges
vtensiles, Lyueries, Tombes, or Monumentes. or otherwise for all Lawfull warrlyke factes or Ciuile vse or
exercises: according to the Lawes of Arms, and Customes that to gentillmen belongethe: without let or
interruption of any other person or persons ^ for vse or pr bearing the same/. In witnesse & perpetuall remembrance hereof
I have herevnto subscribed my name & fastened the Seale of my office endorzed with the signett
of my Arms. At the office of Arms London the xx. daye of October in the xxxixth xxxviijth yeare
of the reigne of our Soueraigne Lady Elizabeth by the grace of God Quene of England, ffraunce
and Irleland [sic] defender of the ffaythe etc.    1596.

This John s[....]g A patierne thereof vnder Clarent Cooks hand.
in paper. xx years past.
A Justice of peace and he was T[...] Baylife ^ officer & cheffe of the towne of Stratford vppon Avon xv or xvj years past.
That he hathe Landes & tenementes of good wealth & Substance 500li.
That he mar[ried] [damage] 

Last updated March 19, 2018