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  • Jeremy Northman as Sir Thomas More wearing a gold chain of office adorned with the Tudor Rose in the 2007 series "The Tudors."
    • Showtime Networks

    The Tudors

    2007

    Costume seen on Jeremy Northam as Sir Thomas More

  • Geoffrey Palmer as the Lord Chief Justice wearing a gold chain of office in the episode "Henry IV Part 2" of the 2012 series "The Hollow Crown."
    • BBC

    The Hollow Crown: Henry IV Part 2

    2012

    Costume seen on Geoffrey Palmer as the Lord Chief Justice

Additional Images

About the Costume

This livery collar or chain of office was first seen on Jeremy Northam as Sir Thomas More in Showtime’s The Tudors. It was worn again in 2012 on Geoffrey Palmer as the Lord Chief Justice in The Hollow Crown: Henry IV Part 2.

Livery collars were generally used to denote the holding of an office or as a symbol of loyalty to a specific person or house. This particular design, usually referred to as a “Collar of Esses,” was used as early as 1371. There is speculation that the “S” stands for “Soverayne” (sovereign) or Spiritus Sanctus (Holy Spirit), though the actual meaning is unknown.

Throughout the reigns of Henry IV, V, and VI, the “Esses” were typically considered to be a badge of the House of Lancaster. The pendant that adorned the end of the chain at this time was generally a white swan. The chain was used again during the reign of Henry VIII, where Hans Holbein’s famous portrait of the Lord Chamberlain, Sir Thomas More, was painted wearing a chain of Esses, adorned at the end with a Tudor Rose. 

This particular chain had to remove the Tudor Rose for The Hollow Crown, as the Wars of the Roses had not yet begun, and thus the Tudor Rose – the combination of the Houses of York and Lancaster – did not yet exist.

About the Costume

Have you seen this gown somewhere else? Do you need to be given credit for this sighting? Do you have corrections, additions or changes you would like to make?

Have you ever watched a film and noticed a character walk by in a gown that you just know you’ve seen before? Recycled Movie Costumes is dedicated to documenting the life of a costume through its various appearances on film and television.

Additional Images

About the Costume

This livery collar or chain of office was first seen on Jeremy Northam as Sir Thomas More in Showtime’s The Tudors. It was worn again in 2012 on Geoffrey Palmer as the Lord Chief Justice in The Hollow Crown: Henry IV Part 2.

Livery collars were generally used to denote the holding of an office or as a symbol of loyalty to a specific person or house. This particular design, usually referred to as a “Collar of Esses,” was used as early as 1371. There is speculation that the “S” stands for “Soverayne” (sovereign) or Spiritus Sanctus (Holy Spirit), though the actual meaning is unknown.

Throughout the reigns of Henry IV, V, and VI, the “Esses” were typically considered to be a badge of the House of Lancaster. The pendant that adorned the end of the chain at this time was generally a white swan. The chain was used again during the reign of Henry VIII, where Hans Holbein’s famous portrait of the Lord Chamberlain, Sir Thomas More, was painted wearing a chain of Esses, adorned at the end with a Tudor Rose. 

This particular chain had to remove the Tudor Rose for The Hollow Crown, as the Wars of the Roses had not yet begun, and thus the Tudor Rose – the combination of the Houses of York and Lancaster – did not yet exist.

This livery collar or chain of office was first seen on Jeremy Northam as Sir Thomas More in Showtime’s The Tudors. It was worn again in 2012 on Geoffrey Palmer as the Lord Chief Justice in The Hollow Crown: Henry IV Part 2.

Livery collars were generally used to denote the holding of an office or as a symbol of loyalty to a specific person or house. This particular design, usually referred to as a “Collar of Esses,” was used as early as 1371. There is speculation that the “S” stands for “Soverayne” (sovereign) or Spiritus Sanctus (Holy Spirit), though the actual meaning is unknown.

Throughout the reigns of Henry IV, V, and VI, the “Esses” were typically considered to be a badge of the House of Lancaster. The pendant that adorned the end of the chain at this time was generally a white swan. The chain was used again during the reign of Henry VIII, where Hans Holbein’s famous portrait of the Lord Chamberlain, Sir Thomas More, was painted wearing a chain of Esses, adorned at the end with a Tudor Rose. 

This particular chain had to remove the Tudor Rose for The Hollow Crown, as the Wars of the Roses had not yet begun, and thus the Tudor Rose – the combination of the Houses of York and Lancaster – did not yet exist.

Credits

Sighting Credit:
  • Esther
Photos provided by:
  • Esther
Costume Designer:
  • Joan Bergin

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