Heraldry in Medieval and Early Modern State-Rooms

Towards a tipology of heraldic programmes in spaces of self-representation

Torsten Hiltmann (Editor/Coordinator), Miguel Metelo de Seixas (Editor/Coordinator)

Research output: Book/ReportBook


Either in princely palaces, noble castles, patrician residences, town halls or cathedral chapters, many ceremonial rooms from the Middle Ages or the Modern Era are equipped with heraldic programs. These have so far been little studied or misunderstood and their study often raises problems of interpretation. Heraldry plays an essential role in these epochs in political communication; hence its recurring presence in this kind of place. The purpose of this book is to offer for the first time a synthetic perspective of this type of decoration to propose a first typology. The ceremonial halls were linked to the idea of a space that was used for purposes of representation and ceremonial use, as a privileged identity space where both members of the community and those coming from outside were welcomed. The heraldic programs that were present there are therefore intimately linked to these functions of the rooms in which they were inscribed. Thus they are an integral part of this issue of self-representation and communication. The nature of these heraldic programs is diversified: they could be read or read genealogically, chivalrically, literary, historical, memorial, legendary; they could reflect ideals or political and imaginary networks. These heraldic representations could also occur on several supports: paintings, stained glasses, sculpture, tapestries, ephemeral decorations, draperies, furniture.
Original languageEnglish
Place of PublicationMünster
Number of pages236
ISBN (Print)978-3799512534
Publication statusAccepted/In press - 2017
EventHeraldry in Medieval and Early Modern State-Rooms: Towards a Typology of Heraldic Programmes in Spaces of Self-Representation - Universität Münster, Munchen, Germany
Duration: 16 Mar 201618 Mar 2016



  • heraldry
  • palaces
  • iconography of power
  • Medieval society

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