File 465 - Decorations for McGill University for the Royal Visit of 1951

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Decorations for McGill University for the Royal Visit of 1951

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CA CAC 1-3-465

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  • September 1951-October 1951 (Creation)

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Physical description

39 drawings : 20 pencil on paper, 12 watercolour on paper, 1 blueprint, 6 black line

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File consists of drawings for decorations and file folder of correspondence. Drawings include:
1 sketch drawing: heraldry
1 development drawing: site plan
34 working drawings: heraldic decorations
33 detail drawings: heraldic decorations, woodwork (including fittings, panels, shields).

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General note

The decorations on the buildings for the occasion of the Royal Visit to McGill University were, as in 1939, largely based on heraldic subject matter. In preparation for this project Nobbs cabled Lord Lyon, King of Arms for Scotland, requesting the blazons for the Arms of H.R.H. the Duke of Edinburgh, and H.R.H. Princess Elizabeth, Duchess of Edinburgh.
Blason of the Arms of H.R.H. the Duke of Edinburgh. The document Nobbs received, presumably authored by Lord Lyon, specified: --Quarterly, 1st, Or, semee of hearts Gules, 3 lions passant in pale Azure, ducally crowned of the first; 2nd, Azure, a cross Argent; 3rd, Argent, 2 pallets Sable; 4th, Argent, upon a rock proper, a castle triple towered Sable, masoned of the first, windows, port, turret-caps and vanes Gules; above the Shield is placed H.R.H’s coronet, thereon a Helmet befitting his degree with a Mantling Or, doubled Ermine, whereon is set for Crest a plume of 5 ostrich feathers alternately Sable and Argent issuant from a ducal coronet Or; upon a compartment below the shield, along with this Motto GOD IS MY HELP, are set for Supporters, on the dexter a savage, crowned with a chaplet of oak leaves, girt about the loins with a lion skin and supporting in his dexter hand a club proper; and on the sinister a lion, queue fourchee, ducally crowned Or and gorged with a naval coronet Azure. --Blason of the Arms of H.R.H. Princess Elizabeth, Duchess of Edinburgh. --Quarterly, 1st and 4th, Or, a lion rampant within a double tressure flory counterflory Gules; 2nd, Gules, three lions passant guardant in pale Or; 3rd, Azure, a harp Or, stringed Argent, a label Argent Supporters, dexter, a unicorn Argent, crowned with an imperial and gorged with an open crown, to the last affixed a chain passing between his forelegs and reflexed over his back Or, bearing a banner Azure charged with St. Andrew’s cross Argent, sinister, a lion rampant guardant also crowned with an imperial crown Or, bearing a banner Argent charged with a cross Gules, about the neck of each a label as in the arms. In a letter to P. Surrey, Editor of the Standard, Montreal, regarding the borrowing of the document by the magazine, Nobbs writes “ Why should you wish to impose upon your readers a technical screed in a 12th century mixture of Norman French and Middle English I cannot understand. A correct translation into modern English might possibly be of more interest.” (P. E. Nobbs, Montreal, to P. Surrey, Montreal, 17 September 1951, John Bland Canadian Architecture Collection, McGill University, Montreal.)

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