From: Philippe Verdy (firstname.lastname@example.org)
Date: Tue Jun 24 2003 - 05:54:30 EDT
On Tuesday, June 24, 2003 7:41 AM, Peter_Constable@sil.org <Peter_Constable@sil.org> wrote:
> Michael Everson wrote on 06/23/2003 07:54:13 AM:
> > Similarly, the fleur-de-lis is a
> > well-known named symbol which can be used to represent a number of
> > things.
> In text? I've seen it on flags, on license plates, on heraldic
> crests, but can't recall seeing it in text.
This symbol is commonly found and used in some printed books, sometimes as a bullet-like character, but most often to terminate a chapter or add "fioritures" near a title, often used in patterns of 3 symbols, in text related to royal decisions in the old Kingdom of France before the French Revolution (and sometimes used after, by royalists, when opponsed to the later Emperor supporters which used the Eagle, and the Republicans using branches of chest and olivetrees).
This is definitely a symbol of the King, and it is still used today in modern heraldic, on French regional flags like Ile-de-France (around Paris, the royal domain), Burgundy (near Dijon), Center (near Orleans), Pays-de-Loire (near Nantes), Pycardy (near Amiens), Provence-Alps-Cote-d'Azur (near Marseille, Aix-en-Provence, Nice), Rhone-Alps (near Lyon) as seen on this page:
It is also related to French cultural attachment in other countries, and used in Quebec.
A similar, culturally linked symbol is the "ermine spot", shortly "ermine", (that some are confusing with a spider) as found on the white and black Breton flag (the "Gwenn-ha-Du", recreated in late 20th century with this symbol, born from an old distinction Order of the Ermine, before Brittany was attached to the Kingdom of France), and also for the current flag of Pays-de-la-Loire, a modern region created after the Revolution, with attachments to both the historic Duchy of Brittany (Nantes), and the Kingdom of France (the rest of the modern region). The ermine spot seems to be found and used in various places, including modern book publications within text, where it is not only considered "decorative" but linked to a strong Breton reference.
Lots of historic and descriptive info on one of the mirrors of the "Flags of the World" site, such as:
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