Article by - BEACON GENEALOGICAL AND HERALDIC RESEARCH
The Armorial Bearings of John, 2nd Baron Wodehouse, of Kimberley in the County of Norfolk - Present on Georgian Silver Salver, Agincourt, item S1310, www.leopardantiques.com
The armorial bearings as engraved upon this handsome Georgian Silver Salver are those of John, 2nd Baron Wodehouse. They may be blazoned as follows:
Arms: 1st and 4th quarters: Sable a chevron or gutty de sang between three cinquefoils ermine (for Wodehouse); 2nd quarter: Gules a chevron ermine between ten crosses patty argent (for Berkeley) and 3rd quarter: Argent an eagle displayed sable a bordure of the second bezanty (for Killegrew); overall, an escutcheon of pretence: Quarterly argent and gules in the 2nd and 3rd quarters a fret or overall a fess azure (for Norris).
Supporters: Two wild men wreathed about the loins proper each holding in his exterior hand a club raised in the attitude of striking sable.
The arms are ensigned with a Baron’s coronet
Although this silver salver dates from 1765 as hallmarked in London, the engraving as shown upon it can only date between the years 1834 and 1845 owing to the fact that the armorial bearings as displayed here are those of John, 2nd Baron Wodehouse.
The 2nd Baron only succeeded his father, John, 1st Baron Wodehouse on the latter’s death on the 29th May 1834. This date therefore gives the earliest date at which the engraving was made. The latest date of its engraving would have been either the death of his wife Charlotte Laura in 1845 or his own in the following year.
John, 2nd Baron Wodehouse was born on the 11th January 1771. He served during his life as the Lord Lieutenant of Norfolk, and Vice-Admiral of the coast of Norfolk. He commanded the East Norfolk Milltia and was High Steward of Norwich Cathedral. He married on the 17th November 1796, Charlotte Laura, only daughter and heiress of John Norris, of Witton Park and Witchingham, Norfolk. As Charlotte Laura was her father’s heraldic heiress (a lady having no brothers to transmit the family arms through the male line), her paternal arms of Norris are placed centrally over her husband’s arms as an escutcheon of pretence in that her husband is ‘pretending’ to his wife’s armorial estate. Such arms would ordinarily be quartered with the family arms by the next generation on the death of lady concerned in order for her family to be represented armorially in the overall scheme of quarterings. A family such as the Wodehouses like many other peerage and gentry families would accrue over the generations many quarterings when on occasion they happened to marry an heraldic heiress. As mentioned above, John’s wife Charlotte Laura predeceased him by about 11 months dying in June 1845. John died on the 26th May 1846. He was succeeded in the peerage by his grandson, another John, as the 3rd Baron Wodehouse. The 3rd Baron was subsequently advanced in the peerage as the Earl of Kimberley on the 1st June 1866. The Earldom of Kimberley is still extant today in the person of John Armine Woodhouse, the 5th Earl of Kimberley.
The motto ‘Agincourt’ acts as a remembrance to the fact that a forebear of the Barons Wodehouse (and Earls of Kimberley), one John Wodehouse served amongst many other offices, as Esquire of the Body of King Henry V during the years 1413 – 1422 and undoubtedly served beside the king at the Battle of Agincourt in 1415.
John J. Tunesi of Liongam