Medieval seal Quercy gothic equestrian matrix of knight de Barasc1 of 6 images

Medieval seal Quercy gothic equestrian matrix of knight de Barasc

Private collection


Exceptional matrix of the equestrian seal in bronze of the knight Arnaud de Barsc (SIGILLVM ARNALDI DE BARASC) which is an unpublished sigillographic element of medieval Quercy. Dating from the end of the 13th century to the early XIVth century, this numismatic object can be attributed to Arnaud IV of Barasc - 1235 to 1277 (Knight and Lord of Béduer), or to one of his sons Arnaud V de Barasc - 1268 - 1315 to 1328, (Baron de Béduer, Chevalier, Lord of Gréalou and Sainte Naboule, Coseigneur of Montbrun). The round matrix, with a thickness varying between 2 and 4 mm, represents a knight with a helmet, a horse blanket, leg guards and a shield with the coat of arms of the Barasc (lion leoparded with silver and cow). The knight holds a sword.

The origin of the Barasc family is not well known. Barasc is initially a name (in the sense of the English surname), very widespread at the time and in the region of the valley of Célé where the history of the family begins. Albe thinks that the Themines and the Barascs have a common origin without being really contradicted by d'Alauzier, it is only a hypothesis. It is impossible for us, as Albe wrote (Béduer's monograph), to know if the de Barasc are a branch of the Themines or the de Themines a branch of the Barasc. The genealogy of this family must be analysed with caution: from the XIth to the mid-XIVth century, the elders are all called Arnaud or Déodat (Occitan form of Déodatus, we also meet Dieudonné or Dorde), so that it is sometimes difficult to distinguish them. The Barasc appeared in the history of Quercy at the end of the 11th century, with Déodat, Lord of Béduer (the castle of Béduer is attested from the middle of the XIth century). The advocatus of the abbey of Marcilhac is given to him. This same Deodat, as well as many Quercynois lords, accompanied Bertrand, count of Toulouse, to the crusade of 1109. A little later, in 1193, an Arnaud de Barasc, descendant of Déodat, appeared as witness in the act of cession of Roc Amadour in Tulle.

This is the son of Arnaud, another Deodat, who, on 12 June 1214, swears oath to Simon de Montfort, leader of the Albigensian Crusade. This does not prevent him from passing without delay into the camp of the Count of Toulouse and his sons Arnaud, Déodat and Guillaume to participate in 1219, with Raymond VI, in the defense of Toulouse besieged by Louis VIII. The Barascs will become famous during the Hundred Years War. In the 16th century, the lordship of Béduer passes by inheritance to the Narbonnès then the Lostanges of Saint-Alvère. We then lose track of the Barasc line, after five centuries of intimately linked history to that of the Quercy.


  • Time:14th century
  • Origin:France
  • Material or technique:Bronze
  • Sizes:4.5 x 0.4 cm (Diameter x Depth)
  • Reference:2642

Conservation status

Really good condition


On the genealogy of the Barasc see also d'Alauzier, Genealogy of Barasc. Lacoste also gives genealogical information.

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