Can you spot the de Lacy lion?

I made the most of the warm sunny weather this week to replace some of the photos that I lost in ‘the great computer crash’.

Two of the places I visited have huge connections with the de Lacy family – Pontefract Castle built by Ilbert de Lacy and Whalley Abbey which was founded by Henry de Lacy.

When Henry de Lacy gave permission for the monks at Stanlaw Abbey to move to Whalley one of the stipulations he made was the remains of his father, grandfather and great grandfather should be brought with them and reburied in the new abbey church. Sadly there is no record of this happening, but I believe that it did as there is the remains of a large gravestone to the left of the altar in what would have been the chancel of the church that bears the de Lacy lion. You can see it on the first photo.

The second photo is one that I took at Pontefract Castle. It is very worn but I think I can make out the outline of the de Lacy lion there as well. What do you think? Can anyone else see it? Click on the pictures to enlarge them.

1 thought on “Can you spot the de Lacy lion?

  1. Bruce Floyd Mitton November 15, 2011 — 5:54 pm

    The de Lacy lion is very evident on the “Coat of Arms” of the Shireburnes of Stonyhurst. There are 4 quarters. Two are the eagles of the Baileys, descendent’s of Otto de Mitton. The other two are ramp et lions similar to the de Lacy lion. Not unusual for a coat of arms but the same as at Whalley and Pontefract you show. The easiest to see are on Sir Richard Shirburnes effigies at Mitton Church in the Shireburn Chapel denoting his family connections ( I can e mail pictures?). Sir Richard was very interested in his genealogy and made a study of it according to one source. I became intrigued as I though it might reveal an de Lacy descendant line of the Mittons, Baileys and Shirburnes to “Ralph the Red” as a de Lacy issue and founder of Mitton church. The Shireburns were Baptized, married and buried there for 400 years. Such coat of arms did not come about until the 14th century but it seems another clue to a blood connection to the de Lacys.

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