From Middle English pavilloun, from Anglo-Norman pavilloun, from Latin pāpiliōnem, form of pāpiliō (butterfly, moth) (due to resemblance of tent to a butterfly’s wings), of unknown origin.[1]

Since the earliest days, lords spiritual and temporal have been enthroned in seats of power. The Roman emperors held court seated on ivory and gold. The monarchs of Europe commanded richly ornamented chairs to command attention and ensure prestige. Thrones are the visible embodiment of authority and sovereignty. The kingdoms of the Society are challenged by the need for thrones that are imposing and beautiful, of high craftsmanship and suitable for the majesty of the Sovereign and Consort, yet are easily portable and able to resist the rigors of travel.

In their initial conception, crowns were used to indicate beings who were believed to be ordained by the gods. While the crown style changed from feathered headdresses, to gold circlets, the importance did not. The actual word “tiara” originated from Ancient Persia, where a tall and richly ornamented tiara was made for the king’s wear. It stayed securely on the king’s head as it was tied together in the back, and was typically covered in jewels and gold embellishments.

The royal tradition of wearing a tiara later spread to Ancient Greece after Alexander the Great assumed complete authority. Despite the fact that most of Greece accepted the wearing of diadems in their hair, the Romans still rejected the idea and continued to wear laurel wreaths instead. Even Julius Caesar refused the offer of a heavily laden crown after his triumph over Pompey. It wasn’t until the entire annihilation of the Roman Empire that the tiara was viewed uniformly as a symbol of royal authority.

The next type of crown was later found in Medieval Europe. Rather than a diadem in which you tied together, the European kings wore circlets, or coronets, upon their heads. The first known of this type was believed to have been made from one of the nails from the Cross, and was loaded with precious stones and gold.

The original Great Sword of State was won by Prince [[Martin the Temperate]] in the [[War vs. Atenveldt|war b

An ornamented staff carried by rulers on ceremonial occasions as a symbol of sovereignty. “imperial regalia of orb and scepter”

A seal is a device for making an impression in wax, clay, paper, or some other medium, including an embossment on paper, and is also the impression thus made. The original purpose was to authenticate a document, a wrapper for one such as a modern envelope, or the cover of a container or package holding valuables or other objects.

The seal-making device is also referred to as the seal matrix or die; the imprint it creates as the seal impression (or, more rarely, the sealing).[1] If the impression is made purely as a relief resulting from the greater pressure on the paper where the high parts of the matrix touch, the seal is known as a dry seal; in other cases ink or another liquid or liquefied medium is used, in another color than the paper.

In most traditional forms of dry seal the design on the seal matrix is in intaglio (cut below the flat surface) and therefore the design on the impressions made is in relief (raised above the surface). The design on the impression will reverse (be a mirror-image of) that of the matrix, which is especially important when script is included in the design, as it very often is. This will not be the case if paper is embossed from behind, where the matrix and impression read the same way, and both matrix and impression are in relief. However engraved gems were often carved in relief, called cameo in this context, giving a “counter-relief” or intaglio impression when used as seals. The process is essentially that of a mould.

Most seals have always given a single impression on an essentially flat surface, but in medieval Europe two-sided seals with two matrices were often used by institutions or rulers (such as towns, bishops and kings) to make two-sided or fully three-dimensional impressions in wax, with a “tag”, a piece of ribbon or strip of parchment, running through them. These “pendent” seal impressions dangled below the documents they authenticated, to which the attachment tag was sewn or otherwise attached (single-sided seals were treated in the same way).

Prior to the construction of these pillows, there were a variety of cushions, pads, and soft things laid before the Thrones. Noting the generally shabby condition of these pillows, the Order of the Laurel in Caid agreed to sponsor the construction of new kneeling pillows.

The Pillow Project began in late 1988, directed by Mistress Louise of Woodsholme. Inspired by the embroidered slips she studied at Traquair House in Scotland, and the Oxburgh Hangings, worked by Mary Queen of Scots and Bess of Hardwicke, Louise designed the embroidery patterns.

The embroidered patches, or slips, were worked by Companions of the Order. Mistress Astra Christiana Benedict constructed the inner pillows, and stuffed them with kapok. After the inner pillows were complete, Mistress Louise assembled the velvet pillows, mounted the slips, and couched metallic cord around them.

Attributions for the work are being collected. If you worked on this project, please contact Messer Giuseppe Francesco da Borgia.

Inspired by the Lochac Pelican cloak, Giuseppe Francesco da Borgia and Richenda Elizabeth Coffin proposed that the Order of the Laurel in Caid authorize the undertaking of a similar project. On receiving the Order’s approval, Giuseppe and Richenda designed and created a blue velvet cope overlain with a grid of silver gimp. Each interstice will be filled with the coat of arms of one of the Companions of the Order.

The cope may be used in elevation ceremonies, and during Coronations when the Charters of the Orders are rendered to the Crown.

While medieval and renaissance copes were decorated with Christian art, there are also examples of heraldry being used; the Syon Cope at the V&A (1300-1320; linen backing silk, silver-gilt, and silver thread embroidery) uses strips decorated with heraldic shields to extend fragments of an earlier chasuble to complete the surface of the cope.

The goal of this project was to create a new ceremonial garment that honored the text of the elevation ceremony: “As this cloak folds you in warmth, so does the Order of the Laurel enfold you in companionship.” We chose the cope shape to display the unity of a group of diverse individuals, and to avoid confusion with the Order Robes, which identify a person as part of the Order. Other than size, there are no restrictions on the era, culture, materials or design of a Companion’s arms for the cope.

For a heater-shaped shield, finished dimensions are 3.5″ wide by 4.0″ long. For a lozenge, the dimensions are 3.5″ wide by 4.5″ long. Other shapes may be acceptable; consult Giuseppe or Richenda before using a non-standard shield.


PENNON is a small elongated flag, either pointed or swallow-tailed (when swallow-tailed it may be described as a BANDEROLE). It was charged with the heraldic badge or some other armorial ensign of the owner, and displayed on his own lance, as a personal ensign. The pennoncelle was a modification of the pennon.

In contemporary Scots usage, the pennon is four feet long. It tapers either to a point or to a rounded end as the owner chooses. It is assigned by the Lord Lyon King of Arms to any armiger who wishes to apply for it.[3]

The heraldic standard appeared about the middle of the fourteenth century, and was in general use by personages of high rank in the two following centuries. The standard appears to have been adopted for the special purpose of displaying badges. “The badge was worn on his livery by a servant as retainer, and consequently the standard by which he mustered in camp was of the livery colours, and bore the badge, with both of which the retainer was familiar.”[2]

Heraldic flags that are used by individuals, like a monarch, as a means of identification are often called standards (e.g. royal standard). These flags, more usually banners, however are not standards in a strict heraldic sense but have come to be known as such. A standard is not rectangular: it tapers, usually from 4 feet down to 2 feet, and the fly edge is rounded (lanceolate). In England any armiger who has been granted a badge is entitled to fly a standard.

The medieval English standard was larger than the other flags, and its size varied with the owner’s rank. The Cross of St. George usually appeared next to the staff, and the rest of the field was generally divided per fess (horizontally) into two colours, in most cases the livery colours of the owner. “With some principal figure or device occupying a prominent position, various badges are displayed over the whole field, a motto, which is placed bend-wise, having divided the standard into compartments. The edges are fringed throughout, and the extremity is sometimes swallow-tailed, and sometimes rounded.”[2]

Standard of the Leonese Monarchs during the Middle Ages (until the 13th century). It’s one of the oldest heraldic flags; the documentation for the colours dates from c. 1150.[10]

A Banderole (Fr. for a “little banner”), has both a literal descriptive meaning for its use by knights and ships, and is also heraldic device for representing bishops.[1]

Royal Banner of the King of Denmark in the 14th century, based on the Royal Arms of Denmark.

A GONFALONE or GONFALON is a vertically hung banner emblazoned with a coat of arms. Gonfalons have wide use in civic, religious, and academic heraldry. The term originated in Florence, Italy, where communities, or neighborhoods, traditionally displayed gonfaloni in public ceremonies.