The two main devices (symbols) in the Dalby blazon are the barry wavy and buckle. The two main tinctures (colors) are or and gules.
The bright yellow colour frequently found in coats of arms is known to heralds as Or, or sometimes simply as Gold.1. Along with, argent, or silver it forms the two “metals” of heraldry – one of the guidelines of heraldic design is that silver objects should not be placed upon gold fields and vice versa 2. The yellow colour is often associated with the Sun, and the zodiacal sign of Leo.3.
The bold red colour on a heraldic shield is known as gules. It has a long history within heraldry, it is known that one of those who besieged the scottish castle of Carlaverock in 1300 was the French knight Euremions de la Brette who had as his arms a simple red shield.4. The word gules is thought to come from the Arabic gule, or “red rose” 5. Later writers associated it with the precious stone ruby and the metal iron 6, perhaps because of the red glow of iron in the heat of the blacksmith’s forge.
When the field of the shield is filled with alternately coloured horizontal lines, this is known as barry, obviously because it is like having many separate bars across the field 7. As well as being drawn with straight edges, there some decorative effects that can be used, and, with careful, these can be very pleasing. The decorations are typically much smaller than those used on the major ordinaries, such as the fess so care must be taken to ensure clarity. The decorative edge pattern Wavy, sometimes written as undy is, for obvious reasons, associated with both water and the sea 8. Indeed, a roundel with alternating bars of azure and argent (blue and white) is known by the shorthand term fountain, representing water at the bottom of a well 9. Other colours have also been used and the result can be very pleasing to the eye.
Although we expect to find fierce creatures and fearsome weapons depicted in a coat of arms this is not always the case – sometimes simple household objects are used 10. Sometimes these objects were chosen for the familiarity they would have for the obsever, helping them identify the owner, and sometimes they were used because of some association with the owner, or a similarity to the family name. 11 The buckle may fall into this category, it is present in a surprising number of different forms and has a long heritage in use, 12 being considered honourable bearings and are said to “signify victorious fidelity in authority”. 13