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Lady Matilda Maxwell
Lady Matilda Maxwell

Bishop's Castle
Bishop's Castle

Ancient Seal of Glasgow

Mitchell Library, Glasgow Collection

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Ancient Seal of Glasgow

The ancient seal of the Community of Glasgow. The head of St Kentigern is shown with the elements of the legends associated with his life: a bird perched on a branch to the left (referring to the robin that he restored to life, and the hazel branch he caused miraculously to burst into flames); a fish with a ring in its mouth (he recovered the ring given by King Rydderch Hael to Queen Languoreth, in the mouth of a salmon caught in the River Clyde), and a bell (representing the small hand bells with which the saint called his flock to worship). The full text, which is partly obliterated in this illustration, is Sigillvm comvne de Glagv..

This representation is taken from a document addressed to the Abbot of Melrose in 1325. It was the third seal to be used by the community, and was often to be found on charters granted to various trades by the city's magistrates. It was in continuous use until a new design was adopted in 1647.

Reference: Mitchell Library, GC 941.435 REN

Reproduced with the permission of Glasgow City Council, Libraries Information and Learning

bells, birds, charters, fish, hazel branches, heraldry, magistrates, Melrose Abbey, rings, robins, salmon, seals, trades

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