Isle of Man Brass
(c) Vin Callcut 2002-2017. Small extracts can be used with acknowledgements to 'Oldcopper.org' website.
Helpful comments are very welcome.
Holidaymakers always want souvenirs of the happy times that they have had and brassware is often ideal. Thousands of different locations have been commemorated with personalised items and badges. This is one example taken from a special island that has generated a great affection for many. Souvenirs in the form of the 'Three legs of Mann' and the motto, adopted in 1668, 'Quocunque Jeceris Stabit' (Whithersoever you throw it, it will stand), are used to decorate many types of useful and decorative products.
The Isle of Man has been inhabited since the Mesolithic period and lies on the important early trading route between Scandinavia, the Western Isles of Scotland, Ireland and the South West of Britain. Copper and tin were among the vital supplies being transported. Dominance of the Island has therefore been important and resulted in many battles and much diplomacy.
The device itself seems to have been adopted in the Thirteenth Century as the armorial bearings of the native kings of the Isle of Man, whose dominion also included the Hebrides - the Western Isles of Scotland. After 1266, the dynasty ended and the Norwegian king ceded the Island to the Crown of Scotland, then eventually permanently to the English Crown. Since 1866 the Isle of Man has been a self governing Crown Dependency.
The emblem was probably derived from the Celtic and Norse triple spiral decorations called 'triskeles' of three interlocked spirals which signified either the three realms of land, sea and sky or three quarters of the sun's year and was retained. All the early examples of the Manx 'Legs' show them as if running sunwise (i.e. clockwise) and to that extent the heraldic symbol of the Island still retained an essential feature of the ancient pagan sun-symbol.
The Islanders are also very proud of their native breed of Manx Cats that have no tail or merely a vestigial tail.
J Tyzack products also use the three-legged logo but are not made in the Isle of Man but in Sheffield and now marketed by Spear and Jackson toolmakers.