The bend is such a bold and clear shape, clearly visible on the shield, that its popularity should not be a surprise. One of the Heralds primary roles is ensure that each coat of arms be distinct from all others Boutell’s Heraldry, J.P. Brooke-Little, Warne, (revised Edition) London 1970, P 258 and one way to accomodate the demand for the use of the bend was to draw them with a variety of decorative edges, thus distinguishing, at least from close up, one set of arms from another. Compony, also known as Gobony (and a surprising number of other varying spellings!) A Glossary of Terms used in British Heraldry, J.H. Parker, Oxford, 1894, Entry:Gobony is quite unusual in the world of heraldic art. Where most colours, patterns and furs can be applied more or less to any item on the shield, compony is specifically a patterning for the major, so called ordinaries – the larger charges such as the fess, pale and bordure. The large charge is split into a single series of large, square sections and colour alternately of two tinctures Boutell’s Heraldry, J.P. Brooke-Little, Warne, (revised Edition) London 1970, P 33. There is another variant, with two lines of squares known as counter compony (or sometimes even compony-counter-compony. Wade, the noted heraldic authorgroups compony with the other “square” objects as symbols of “Constancy”.