I wanted to follow up in this thread with a counter to one of Round's arguments against the credibility of the arms of Sir John Smith, Baron of the Exchequer under Henry VIII and the arms of the Smiths of Cressing Temple.
Round states on page 185 of Peerage and Pedigree, Vol II:
"On investigation we discover that Sir John Smith, as "of Cressing", was actually granted a coat by Barker, Garter King of Arms (1536-1549), a fact which proves conclusively that he had not inherited, as alleged, from his grandfather, the cross and peacocks coat, but knew himself to be a novus homo with no hereditary right to arms.
This discovery is the key to the whole heraldry of the family."
Further, he quotes from Vincent's Leicestershire,
"I cannot but feare this descent from which ye Smiths of Ashby Folvill and others of that name derive themselves; because it is scarce know that , upon any occasion, both name and arms should be changed, and Sir John Smith, Knt., Baron of ye Exchequer gave first [as the armorial ensigns of this family] Argent, on a chevron sable 6 fleurs-de-lis or; on a cheif, of the second, a lion passant of the first and then, after many years, ye issue of him have [as such armorial ensigns] ye cross, between 4 peacocks proper; and now they flye to Carrington sed quo jure penitus ignoro [translation: but by what right I do not know]."
I have just received an e-mail from the UK College of Arms. I had inquired as to whether there were any rules or laws of arms, either historical or contemporary, that might prevent a man from being issued a different coat of arms than those to which he was hereditarily entitled.
Their response was, and I quote:
"The bearing and use of coats of arms is governed by the Law of Arms. Where a man’s father has a demonstrable right to bear arms, any legitimate sons will inherit a right to the same arms. These arms may be differenced by a mark of cadency; however, this is optional in England.
In certain circumstances, it may be possible for a person who has a right to arms to petition for a new grant of different arms in lieu of those to which he had an inherited right. In many cases, illegitimate sons, who do not inherit a right to arms, have been granted arms similar in appearance to their father’s, with an additional element included for distinction."
Here we find that, in certain circumstances, a man can be issued different arms than those to which he is hereditarily entitled under the Law of Arms.
I hope it is clear that the weight Round attributes to his argument is significantly less than he suggests.
Round also makes this same argument when discussing the use of the Smith peacock arms by the Rivenhall Smiths, specifically stating some weight to the fact that they did not bear the Carrington lozenges.