The portcullis is the strong metal framework used to secure the drawbridge of a castle, and is often drawn alongside the chains used to raise it up. A Glossary of Terms used in British Heraldry, J.H. Parker, Oxford, 1894, Entry:Portcullis We should therefore not be surprised that Wade assigns to it the meaning of ” an effectual protection in emergency”. The Symbolisms of Heraldry, W. Cecil Wade, George Redway, London, 1898 P108 The symbol also occurs on small value British coinage.