In heraldry, the eagle is considered one of the most noble bearings. While the bird can be depicted in a range of positions, its curved beak and grand, dense wings are always maintained as its distinguishing features. A more elaborate pair of Italian eagles dating to the end of the 16th
century, in a similar guise to the present lot with wings ‘displayed and inverted’, were offered at auction at Finarte Semenzato, Venice, 8 November 2003, lot 268.
A.G.M. Hesilrige, Debrett’s Heraldry, London, 1914, pp. 67-68