An Edwardian Pursuivant’s Tabard Sleeve, 1902
An Edwardian Pursuivant’s Tabard Sleeve, 1902
An Edwardian Pursuivant’s Tabard Sleeve, 1902
An Edwardian Pursuivant’s Tabard Sleeve, 1902
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An Edwardian Pursuivant’s Tabard Sleeve, 1902

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Overall: 71cm (27.9in) x 58cm (22.8in)

Provenance: Captain George Swinton, March Pursuivant at the Coronation of Edward VII in 1902.

Silver and gold bullion wire on satin ground as proscribed for March Pursuivant, bearing the Royal Arms as borne from 1837 to the present, viz Quarterly, I and IV Gules, three lions passant guardant in pale Or langued and armed Azure. II Or a lion rampant Gules armed and langued Azure within a double tressure flory-counter-flory Gules. III Azure a harp Or stringed Argent. Sleeve length: 50cm (20in). Contained in a mid 20th century glazed frame bearing a plaque, 'This shoulder piece of an English herald’s tabard was worn by Captain G.S.C. Swinton, March Pursuivant at the Coronation of King Edward VII in 1902.’ 

A pursuivant of arms is an officer of the College of Arms in London ranking below a herald. The four ordinary English pursuivants are Rouge Croix, Bluemantle, Rouge Dragon, and Portcullis. March Pursuivant is an officer at the Court of the Lord Lyon (the Lyon Court) - the standing court of law which regulates heraldry in Scotland.

Captain George Sitwell Campbell Swinton, C.B.E., D.L. (1859-1937) was the second son of Archibald Swinton of Kimmerghame, Berwickshire, and Georgiana, daughter of Sir George Sitwell, 2nd Baronet. He studied art under Sir Hubert von Herkomer and others but entered the Army 1n 1877. Commissioned into the Highland Light Infantry, he served as a an extra Aide-de-Camp to the Viceroy of India, Lord Lansdowne from 1888 to 1894. He was appointed March Pursuivant of Arms Extraordinary in 1901. He was afterwards Albany Herald of Arms in Ordinary from 1923 until 1926 and served as Lord Lyon King of Arms and Secretary to the Order of the Thistle from 1927 until 1929. Swinton also pursued a career as a Member of the London County Council, becoming Chairman in 1912. He also chaired the Town-Planning Committee of the new Imperial City of Delhi;  attended the Imperial Conferences in 1917 and 1918 and was Honorary Secretary of the Scottish National War Memorial Committee. Swinton married Elizabeth Ebsworth, an accomplished singer who was painted by both John Singer Sargent and Sir William Orpen. The actress Tilda Swinton is their great-grandaughter.