Another kind of heraldic picture is the badge. Medieval badges were usually unrelated to the heraldic devices of their owners. Whereas a device proclaims an individual, a badge is more general in nature. Whoever owns the badge decides what its purpose is. Its use is not usually restricted to that individual. For example, I as an individual might register a badge and put it on things that I own to show that they are mine. If I was the head of a household, I might have a second badge to be used by members of the household, or others who are in some way associated with me. A guild or order might have one or more badges that it's members may use. Similarly, a shire or a kingdom might have a badge for citizens to use as indications of their allegiance, another to mark to group property, and still others associated with various offices.
Badges can be displayed in a number of ways, the most common being embroidery or jewelry on clothing; painting, markings, etching, etc. on objects; and on standards. Some badges have fields (i.e. background colours) associated with them. More commonly they are fieldless. That is to say, independent of the background so that they can be embroidered, or made into pendants.
I will mention simply enumerate the possibilities here, as they are best dealt with in the context of costuming.
A heraldic tabard features the arms of an individual on front, back, and over the arms, and is worn over other clothing. It can worn by an armiger, usually over their armour, to show who they are. A tabard would also be worn by the armiger's herald, who speaks as the owner of the arms.
Many armigers wore clothing featuring their arms, often with the arms spectacularly filling the entire garment.
Flags are use heraldry to show you're there, and to act as rallying points. Some types of period flags:
|The gonfanon - a small square flag with three tails streaming from the fly. Used in 11th and 12th centuries, mostly used by commanders in battle.|
|The banner The banner - During the 13th century the use of gonfanons, the particular mark of barons at this time, faded and they were superceded by banners. Initially they were twice as high as long, and later became square.|
The standard - A long tapered flag with a rounded or
They came into use in the 15th century. The growing popularity
of badges in the late 15c caused an upsurge in the use of standards,
since they were an excellent means of displaying them. Standards
were between 4 and 9 yards long, depending on the status of the
Heraldry was also used less strictly as a source of artistic motifs. As mentioned above, some badges were marked on household items to indicate ownership. And of course, a fighter in armour without an emblazoned shield is heraldically a nobody!