Of mice and microfilm

by Nick

I am spending the day at the Guildhall Library and thought I would take a break to share this. (Apologies for the poor quality: it’s a camera-phone picture of a microfilm). It’s in the inside front cover of one of the quarterage books of the Worshipful Company of Ironmongers. Someone has added a pencil sketch of the Company’s coat of arms, echoing the printed one that already decorates the book’s binding. However, it is different in one important way to the actual coat of arms: in this case a carving from outside Ironmongers’ Hall in Aldersgate.

The crest is supported by salamanders, appropriate for a Company connected with iron because they were reputed to be able to survive fire. It’s a little hard to see on my photo but the salamanders seem to have become mice! I would love to know who drew it and when. All I know is that it must be before 1985 when the manuscript was filmed.