Patonce Cross

If you 'pause' for a while, you'll see this description is spot on!

Patonce Cross

Patonce Cross

The Patonce Cross is any form of cross which has expanded ends, like the Pattee Cross, but with each arm terminating in floriated points like the Fleury Cross and Fleur-de-lis Cross. Sometimes there are two petals at the end of each arm, but usually three.

In heraldry, the three petals represent faith, wisdom and chivalry. The four arms spread these to the four corners of the world.

As a Christian Cross, the three petals represent the Trinity and the total twelve petals represent the Apostles.

There may be just one cross arm with this feature and it will still be classified as a Patonce. The orientation may be X or +, elongated † with one horizontal bar or multiple ‡. The arms may have straight edges or concave, as shown above.

Leopard paw print

The term 'Patonce' refers to the arm ends and comes from the French patte d'once: paw of an ounce (snow leopard). This is rather curious because it looks nothing like the paw print of a snow leopard, or indeed any leopard, which like all cats have four toes. The only animals with three toes are the tapir, the rhinoceros and the dinosaur. But as we know, the French are romantic.


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