brick axe

It is important that a coat of arms be easily recognised and so everyday objects were frequently used as clearly identifiable charges – tools Boutell’s Heraldry, J.P. Brooke-Little, Warne, (revised Edition) London 1970, P 69 being a common and important example of these, of which the brick axe is typical. Some of these tools are rather obscure to modern eyes, who of us nowadays would recognise a hemp-break A Glossary of Terms used in British Heraldry, J.H. Parker, Oxford, 1847, P163, let alone know what to use it for! For meaning we need not perhaps look much farther than the noble trade of construction.