An emblematic design, generally consisting of one or more figures with a motto, used apart from heraldic bearings to denote the historical situation, the ambition, or the desire of the person adopting it. See Cognizance.
The symbols displayed to distinguish a knight on the battle- or tournament field. The rules of how such devices could be rendered, called heraldry, was to grow after the 14th century from an ad hoc set of customs to a more rigid set of rules, particular during the early 16th century. Prior to that time, heralds were often associated with the artistic rendering of devices upon shields, crests, and in record books, but there was no system of registration until the 16th century.