Select the search type
  • Site
  • Web
Search
Herbarz Polski translation

Odrowaz herb

The following was prepared from the classic heraldic reference Herbarz Polski (by Kasper Niesiecki, S. J., Lipsk [Leipzig] edition, 1839-1846) by Leonard J. Suligowski, 218A North Henry, Brooklyn, NY 11222-3608. For each coat of arms the blazon or verbal description of the arms below is first given in the authentic heraldic style, followed by a translation from the Polish description by Niesiecki. The right and left sides of a shield are identified from the standpoint of the bearer, i. e., the one holding the shield. His right would be your left and vice versa. The tinctures (colors) in heraldry are as follows: azure = blue; gules = red; sable = black; or = gold; argent = silver; vert = green. In heraldry all charges (pictures) on a shield are assumed to be facing dexter (right side) unless otherwise specified. In Polish heraldry all animals or birds are assumed to be in their natural coloring unless otherwise specified.

 

Arms: Gules, an arrow in pale point to chief, the base double sarcelled and counter embowed, Argent. Out of a crest coronet a panache of peacock plumes proper, charged with the arms in fess. The shield is red, upon which is a silver arrow pointing upward, and the bottom is divided and curved on both ends. Out of a helmeted crown is a display of peacock plumes, upon which can be seen lying on its side the device as pictured on the shield. This is how it was described by the Paprocki in his work Gniazdo cnoty ["Nest of virtue"] on pages 109 and 1172, and in O herbach ["Of Clan Shields"] on page 392. You will also find a mention in Okolski's work, volume 2, pg. 299, and in Klejnoty ["Crests"] on pg. 69.

 

All these authors agree with the author/historian Długosz, that this clan came to Poland from Moravia, and that author says of the families of this house that they were always providi et facundi ["prudent and eloquent"]. The authors also agree with what Paprocki wrote, whose words I cite here. From ancient tales a story about the origin of this shield has been handed down by descendants of this house, that its progenitor, a certain knight of great renown in Moravia, would compete in archery with pagans in a foreign land, and they would vie with each other, trying each other with amazing knightly feats. One pagan, seeing that he had no luck against him by force, went to the monarch of that land, knowing his mercy. Since the pagan had always enjoyed good fortune in battle with every enemy, wanting to get the better of the knight as well, he tried to tweak his nose in front of the monarch. The knight took that as an insult, and seizing him by the lip, tore it off, along with his moustache and nose; he stuck it on an arrow and showed it to the king. The king, who despised the disfigured pagan, gave the knight the arrow piercing the moustache as a remembrance for all time of his superiority over the pagan, and named him Odrzywas [literally "tears off moustache"], which later was corrupted to Odrowaz.

 

That is how Paprocki tells it. Okolski, however, would have it that that the progenitor of this clan cut off both halves of the moustache, and the flesh with it, with the arrow. Bogdan Balbin in notes to Epitome rerum Bohemicarum [Summary of Bohemian Affairs], chapter 15, calls the arms of the Odrowaz family Sagitta circumflexa ["bent arrow"], and adds that some of the earliest houses in Bohemia bore these arms, of whom Tobias was Bishop of Prague, during the times of Premysl Otakar II; but Balbin says that in those times when he was writing there was no family in Bohemia that used this clan shield-only in Moravia, the Tworkowskis and Siedlnickis (page 291).

 

There is some doubt as to when the Odrowaz family came to Poland. Paprocki, based on a charter of the Lysa Góra monastery issued in 966, mentions a Saul de Konskie, during the reign of Boleslaw the Bold. But he is mistaken, because the monastery of Lysa Góra was founded later that that, and Boleslaw the Bold had not yet ruled in Poland.... [Editor's note: Boleslaw the Bold is thought to have been born in 967, and died in 10251.

 

Families with these Arms

 

Bebnowski

Gorski

Kurzanski

Ploszowski

Sypniewski

Bialaczowski

Gostwicki

Litawor

Pniewski

Szydlowiecki

Blaszkowicki

Jaczynic

Luskina

Potempski

Wanikowski

Buchta

Jelenski

Mieszkowski

Potrykowski

Werda

Burkacki

Kamienski

Milzecki

Pruszkowski

Wilkonski

Cedrowski

Kapusta kniaz

Minkiewicz

Przedworski

Wizgerd

Chlewicki

Karsnicki

Mniewski

Ptaszynski

Wolski

Chreptowicz

Kietlinski

Pacanowski

Siedlniski

Wysocki

Chwalkowski

Konecki

Pawlowicz

Sprowy

Zaba

Duracz

Krzyszkowski

Pekalski

Strasz

Zaranowski

Godowski

Kulinski

Pieniazek

Sczekocki

 

Malachowski and Wieladek and others give the following families as using this shield: Abratowicz, Minoski, Przedwojewski, Wilkowski, Wissogerd, and Wyssegerd. [A translation from the Niesiecki Armorial, Vol. VII, pg. 23ff.]

Copyright © 2001 Leonard J. Suligowski. Used by permission. This article originally appeared in White Eagle  (Spring/Summer 2001), the journal of the Polish Nobility Association Foundation.

  
Copyright 2008-2016 Version 7.04.01 by PolishRoots   |  Privacy Statement  |  Terms Of Use