My Kingdom for a Heraldic Horse Pendant

Well not a kingdom perhaps but you could always try haggling if you want a piece of history almost a thousand years old…

A quite astonishing find by a metal detectorist, this pendant would have been worn round the neck of a horse which was part of Richard the Lionheart’s forces. The distinctive coat of arms features a lion rampant standing on one leg with a separated twin tail. In the artist’s impression of Richard in the Holy Land around 1190, you can see he’s used round pendants in place of the ones which would have actually been used.

It’s not every day that you chance upon treasures like these. Just Saturdays. At Charing Cross Market.

Envelopes With A Story To Tell

The circuitous routes taken by some mail items, particularly during the war years, is a useful reminder of a time when postal jurisdiction, no less than the prying eyes of the censor, tells its own story.

Among the superb examples here is an envelope sent in February 1943 to Monaco during the Italian occupation. It was opened and resealed by both the German and the Spanish authorities – just to be sure!

Seeing other examples marked ‘Gone Away’, ‘Return to Sender’ or bearing entirely new forwarding addresses in far flung locations around the globe, one can only wonder about the stories behind them all.

Saint Paul’s Watch

The sight of Saint Paul’s Cathedral dome above the smoke of the Blitz in World War II became an iconic image of Britain’s survival when it stood alone against the might of the German military machine. Incendiary bombs were a particular danger and, from the air, the Cathedral posed an easy target.

The Saint Paul’s Watch, originally formed during the Great War in 1915, was composed of Cathedral clergy and staff, retired architects and public spirited locals. Numbering some 300 people in all, they worked tirelessly to protect the fabric of the building and preventing fire taking hold.

Unsurprisingly, badges denoting membership of this gallant band are extremely rare. Less surprisingly, market stalwart Michael Burroughs of Anything Military has managed to source one!

This is the male version of the badge with lapel crescent fitting. The women’s version was the same but had a wire pin fitting on the back. A rare badge for a rare breed!

Happy Easter!

Just a reminder that we’ll be closed this Saturday for the Bank Holiday weekend. We wish all our traders, collectors and friends of the market a lovely Easter. See you next Saturday!