Eel-fork

Eel-fork (Period)

Eel-fork (Period)

Salmon-spear, or eel-spear (Period)

Salmon-spear, or eel-spear (Period)

An eel-fork, or eel-spear, is a tool used by fishermen in taking eels. It consists of a multi-tined head with broad, flat points; the shaft is not shown.  Examples of the artifact can be found as early as the 16th Century; as a charge, the eel-fork is found in the arms of Stretele or Stratley, c.1413 [DBA2 350; cf. Parker 220].  The illustration is based on a period artifact.

Similar to the eel-fork is the “salmon-spear” or “harping iron”, often shown in armory with a fish transfixed on its tines, as seen in the arms of Ränntl, mid-16th C. [NW 151].  It differs from the eel-fork in that its tines are narrow and barbed, rather like a trident head.  (Nonetheless, this form was also, confusingly, blazoned as an “eel-spear” [cf. Guillim1 220]; there seems to have been no consistent distinction between the various forms.)

The eel-fork and its variants have their points to base by default.  For related charges, see fork.

Varukh syn Iarygin bears:  Per bend sinister argent and vert, four eel-forks conjoined in cross by their bases counterchanged.

This entry was posted on January 16, 2014, in . Bookmark the permalink.