The Company's Coat of Arms and Silver
COAT OF ARMS
The Company was first granted Arms by John Smert, Garter, on 20th October 1464, when it had been in existence for well over a hundred years. The description, or blazon, survives on a scroll of 1654, and the Arms, which originally had no supporters, are first illustrated in a drawing of 1677. The blazon is:
Shield: on a field of six pieces sable and argent three rams salient armed and unguled or.
Crest: on a wreath argent and sable, a ram's head argent armed and issuing from a basket or filled with wool argent between two angels' wings gules.
In 1985 the Court decided to seek the addition of supporters, and the Grant was made by Sir Colin Cole, Garter Principal King of Arms, in April 1987. With three rams heads on the shield, and a ram's head in the crest, it was felt that, rather than adding further animals, the supporters should represent those who have worked in the craft. With the Royal Charter of Independence of 1638 in mind, they were dressed in the fashion of Charles I; the young man, on the left, is an Apprentice - a cutter - who carries shears, which antedate scissors, and are still in use today. The young lady is a Sempstress, representative of generations of womenfolk who stitched the seams, and she holds a distaff. Both are, naturally, wearing protective gauntlets, and stand on a pavement on which are dress gloves and a Coronation glove.
A particular feature of the 1987 Grant of Arms is that it specifically includes the Glovers' motto - True Hearts and Warm Hands. The origin of this motto is unknown; the arms illustrated in 1677 had none, and it is presumed that it was adopted some time in the 18th or 19th centuries. Whatever its origin, it is remarkably apt.
THE GLOVERS COMPANY SILVER
The Glovers Company posseses some remarkably fine silver, some of which is on permanent display in the Private Dining Room of the Guildhall. Some examples from the collection include:
A large flagon, made in London in 1873, engraved with the Arms of the Company
presented by Alfred Mosely, Master 1913-1914.
A pair of James II tankards dated 1685, engraved with the Arms of the Company
presented by Edmond Farthing, Master, and William Rutter, Renter Warden, in 1688.
A Barge Banner, circa 1897, showing the Arms of the Company, which has recently been restored and now hangs in the Glovers Church of St Margaret, Lothbury.
The head of the Beadle’s Staff, showing the Crest of the Company.