Sunday, September 28, 2008

Coats of arms of "fictional" characters... Tarzan, James Bond, Lord Peter Wimsey... and Doc Savage?

Here is Tarzan's coat of arms drawn to Philip José Farmer's specifications by Bjo Trimble. The arms appeared in Phil's "The Arms of Tarzan." first published in Burroughs Bulletin No. 22, Summer 1971. (Reprinted online with permission at the Wold Newton Universe website, as well as in MYTHS FOR THE MODERN AGE: PHILIP JOSÉ FARMER’S WOLD NEWTON UNIVERSE and PEARLS FROM PEORIA.

Next we have James Bond's arms, scanned from the back cover of the original hardback edition of Raymond Benson's THE JAMES BOND BEDSIDE COMPANION.

Here are the Wimsey arms, from the cover of C.W. Scott-Giles The Wimsey Family (the "Dorothy L. Sayers" across the top is obviously not part of the arms, but I wanted to present the color cover rather than the b&w illustration from the book's interior).

In Doc Savage: His Apocalyptic Life, Philip José Farmer described the described the coat of arms of the Clarke Wildman family (Doc Savage's family):

"ARMS—Argent, a fesse chequy gules and azure, in chief an alchemical pelican between two fleams, in base a demisavage holding on his sinister shoulder a club. Crest—A demihuntsman proper winding a horn gules. Mottoes—Free for a Blast; Inicissimus Maleficorum.

The lower* motto means: The Greatest Enemy of Evildoers, a very appropriate motto for Doc Savage."

* The British paperback edition of DS:HAL (Panther, 1975) says “lower,” while the U.S. paperbacks (Bantam, 1975; Playboy, 1981) say “latter.” Both are contextually correct in this case.

I'd bet a lot of Wold Newton and Doc Savage fans might be interested in seeing an actual illustration of Doc Savage's coat of arms. What does everyone think?


Art Sippo: said...

Interested? I'd give my eye teeth (okay my WISDOM teeth) for a copy of the Savage Coat of Arms.

What fools we were! We should have commissioned this for this year since it is the 75th Anniversary of the first Doc Savage Publication.

Win, do you have any idea how we could get one of these made? Is this Bjo Trimble fellow still around?

Art Sippo

Win Scott Eckert said...

Hey Art,

Bjo Trimble is actually a woman, she's the one who wrote the classic STAR TREK CONCORDANCE back in the mid-'70s. (

Anyway, I have a really good feeling about maybe getting a Savage coat of arms out in time for the 75th anniversary. Let me check with a couple artist pals of mine!

Stay tuned...


Unknown said...

It would be cool to have Doc's coat of arms.
By the way, did you know the Blakiana sight references "Evil at Penberly House" in their site.

Win Scott Eckert said...

Yeah, Mark Hodder over at Blakiana was kind enough to list my short story prequel to EVIL IN PEMBERLEY HNOUSE, "The Shades of Pemberley," since it features Sexton Blake as the protagonist. :-)

Art Sippo: said...

That is terrific news, Win. please keep us posted.

You know, Cafe Press stuff with the Greystoke or Savage Crests might prove quite popular. So would posters. But of course, there is the whole copyright thing. Just a thought.

I thought that Bjo Trimble name was familiar. I actually have a copy of that Concordance.

Keep us posted on progress, Win.

Art Sippo

Win Scott Eckert said...

Art, will do. And good idea with Cafe Press -- I'd love to have the arms on coffee mugs!

Andreas said...

I don't know from which strange edition the Wimsey coat of arms comes from, but its colours are wrong. The coat of arms should be "sable, three mice courant argent". Sable means "black" in heraldry, but here the shield is blue. I own an older (?) copy of that delightful book, and it has the right colors on its cover.