In heraldry, gules (pronounced with a hard 'g') is the tincture with the colour red, and belongs to the class of dark tinctures called "colours". In engraving, it is sometimes depicted as a region of vertical lines or else marked with gu. as an abbreviation.

The term gules derives from an Old French word "goules" or "gueules" meaning "throats" or referring to the mouth of an animal (whence comes the English gullet). The mouth and throat are red, hence the transfer of meaning.

For many decades, heraldic authors have believed that the term may have arisen from the Persian word "gul" "rose" (coming to Europe via Muslim Spain or brought back by returning Crusaders) , but according to Brault there is no evidence to support this derivation.

In Polish heraldry, gules is the most common tincture of the field. Through the sixteenth century, nearly half of all noble coats of arms in Poland had a field gules with one or more argent charges on them.

The Gules tincture is said to represent the following:

* Of jewels, the ruby
* Of heavenly bodies, Mars
** (The planet Mars is further associated with the metal iron in traditional alchemical/occultistic lore)

ee also

*Polish heraldry


*Brault, Gerard J. (1997). "Early Blazon: Heraldic Terminology in the Twelfth and Thirteenth Centuries", (2nd ed.). Woodbridge, UK: The Boydell Press. ISBN 0-85115-711-4.

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Look at other dictionaries:

  • Gules — (g[=u]lz), n. [OE. goules, F. gueules, the same word as gueule throat, OF. gole, goule, L. gula. So named from the red color of the throat. See {Gullet}, and cf. {Gula}.] (Her.) The tincture red, indicated in seals and engraved figures of… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • gules — [gyo͞olz] n. [ME goules < OFr, gules, red dyed ermine, orig. pl. of goule, the mouth < L gula, throat: see GULLET] Heraldry the color red: indicated in engravings by parallel vertical lines …   English World dictionary

  • gules — red, in heraldic descriptions, c.1300, from O.Fr. goules neckpiece of (red) fur, pl. of gole, guele throat, from L. gula throat (see GULLET (Cf. gullet)) …   Etymology dictionary

  • gules — (Del fr. gueules). m. pl. Heráld. Color rojo heráldico, que en pintura se expresa por el rojo vivo y en el grabado por líneas verticales muy espesas …   Diccionario de la lengua española

  • Gules — Representación del esmalte de gules en color (rojo) y en grabados en blanco y negro. En Heráldica el color gules (usado siempre en plural) es un rojo intenso. Los textos heráldicos también se refieren a este color como bélico, bermellón,… …   Wikipedia Español

  • Gules — (Del fr. gueules, < gueule, garganta.) ► sustantivo masculino HERÁLDICA Color rojo que en pintura se expresa por el rojo vivo y en el grabado por líneas verticales muy espesas. IRREG. plural gules * * * gules (del fr. «gueules») m. pl. Heráld …   Enciclopedia Universal

  • gules — noun (plural gules) Etymology: Middle English goules, from Anglo French Date: 14th century the heraldic color red …   New Collegiate Dictionary

  • gules — /gyoohlz/, Heraldry. n. 1. the tincture red. adj. 2. of the tincture red: a lion gules. [1300 50; ME goules < OF gueules red fur neckpiece, deriv. of gole throat < L gula] * * * …   Universalium

  • gules — 1. noun /ˈɡjuːlz,ˈɡulz/ The blazoning term for red, e.g. on a coat of arms, typically represented in engraving by vertical parallel lines. 2. adjective /ˈɡjuːlz,ˈɡulz/ In blazon, of the colour red. , The symbol of the Red Cross is a cross gules …   Wiktionary

  • Gules — Her. The *tincture red. [< AnNor. goules < Lat. gula = red dyed fur] Cf. Minium …   Dictionary of Medieval Terms and Phrases

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