fesse counter embattled

The fesse is a broad horizontal band across the centre of the shield, in very ancient times it was said to occupy one third of the area height of the shield A Complete Guide to Heraldry, A.C. Fox-Davies, Bonanza (re-print of 1909 Edition), New York, 1978, P117, however it soon became somewhat narrower. This created an opportunity to add decorative edging to the band, of many forms, and to very pleasing artisitic effect, at least close up – it must be admitted that at distance some of the forms are hard to distinguish! The term counter-embattled refers to an edge drawn as if it were the battlements of a castle. Indeed, it is one of several, very specific terms which describes exactly how the battlements are to be drawn Boutell’s Heraldry, J.P. Brooke-Little, Warne, (revised Edition) London 1970, P 44. Normally, if an ordinary, such as a fesse or bend is drawn embattled then the battlements appear only on the upper edge, however the use her of counter-embattled tells us that the lower edge should be likewise treated. In all cases, the use of this decoration, according to Wade, is clearly to be associated with fortifications such as castles and walled towns. The Symbolisms of Heraldry, W. Cecil Wade, George Redway, London, 1898 P41