Lamia passant guardant (Period)

Lamia passant guardant (Period)

The lamia was originally a female creature from Greek myth, combining the traits of the vampire and succubus.  The legend evolved over the centuries:  in Tudor heraldry, the lamia was depicted as a monster with the body of a lion, the head and breasts of a woman, and the tail of a horse; its forelegs are a woman’s arms, ending in hands, and the hindlegs are those of a goat.  In this form, it’s found as the canting crest of Lambent, 1585 [Dennys 117; Gwynn-Jones 106], though later heralds confused it with the manticore.

The lamia doesn’t seem to have a default posture; the illustration shows a lamia passant guardant.  For related charges, see man-tyger, sphinx.

Muirgen mac Ultain bears:  Sable, a lamia passant guardant Or.

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