32/52 – Oxford (3) Detail – Coats of Arms

Everywhere you look in Oxford there are coats of arms of one form or another; gilded and set on wrought iron gates, carved by stonemasons, painted. You name it, it’s there. These often include unusual detail, like the crest of Mallinckrodt which sits above one of the entrances to the Bodleian Library. This curious coat of arms seems to involve a pair of disembodied arms with the fingers stuck through a pair of rings, what looks like a turban and an armour breastplate all set over a propeller. I’m sure it once meant something to someone.

The wonderfully named Brasenose College (Brasenose comes from “brass nose”) has a lovely coat of arms carved into the stonework, being presented by flying cherubim, with some rather creepy hands clasping shields and a Green Man sitting below it. The last image shows part of the gilded sun symbols in the gateway to the hallowed grounds of All Souls, home to some of the finest minds in the kingdom.

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Crest of Mallinckrodt, Bodleian Library, Oxford. Copyright Fiona Michie.
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Coat of Arms, Brasenose College, Oxford. Copyright Fiona Michie.
Sun, All Souls College, Oxford. Copyright Fiona Michie.
Sun, All Souls College, Oxford. Copyright Fiona Michie.
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