The family crest is a symbol that represents the identity and heritage of a family. It is a unique representation of a family's history, tradition, and values. The crest usually features various elements and symbols that hold significant meaning. These symbols might represent the family's occupation, geographic location, or personal characteristics.
Over time, family crests have become a popular way for families to show off their heritage and identity. They have evolved from simple symbols to complex and intricate designs. The crest has become a unique and personal extension of a family's identity, fitting to be passed down from one generation to another.
If you are interested in uncovering the hidden meanings of your family crest, then you have come to the right place. In this article, we will explore the different elements and symbols commonly used in family crests and what they mean.
The shield is the most prominent part of a family crest. It is usually the basis of any design, and it is where the other symbols are placed. The shield's shape, color, and design all have significant meanings that are unique to each family.
The shape of the shield can indicate the family's geographic location or profession. For example, a shield with a pointed bottom might indicate an Italian origin. A shield with a scallop shaped bottom might indicate a family with roots in the sea or coastal regions.
The colors used in the shield are also significant. They can be used to represent geographic locations, professions, or personal values. For example, gold or yellow might indicate wealth, while red might suggest passion or courage.
The symbols on the shield are known as charges. These symbols can vary depending on the family's history and tradition. Animals, plants, weapons, and objects are common charges. For example, a family with roots in farming might use a wheat sheaf as their charge. A family with roots in the military might use swords or other weapons.
The crest is the element that sits on top of the shield. It is usually an animal or bird, but it can also be a helmet or other object. The crest's design can again vary depending on the family's history and tradition.
The animal used in the crest can signify a family's origin, profession, or personal values. For example, a family with roots in hunting might use a stag as their crest, while a family with roots in farming might use a cow or horse.
The motto is a phrase or sentence that appears on a scroll beneath the shield. It is usually written in Latin, a language widely used in earlier times. The motto can be a family's declaration of values or motivation.
For example, a family with roots in the military might use the phrase 'fidelis et fortis,' meaning 'faithful and strong.' A family with roots in the church might use the phrase 'Deus providebit,' meaning 'God will provide.'
Uncovering the Hidden Meanings of Your Family Crest
Decoding the elements and symbols of a family crest can be a fascinating and meaningful undertaking. It allows you to gain a deeper understanding of your family's history, tradition, and values. Here are some steps to help you uncover the hidden meanings of your family crest.
Research Your Family History
The first step in uncovering your family's crest's hidden meanings is to research your family history. Look for information on your family's origin, occupation, and geographic location. This information can help you understand the symbols and charges used in the family crest.
Research the Symbols and Charges
Once you have gathered information on your family's history, research the symbols and charges used in your family's crest. Look for the meanings of animals, plants, weapons, and other objects used. This will help you understand the symbols' significance and what they represent.
Consult a Heraldry Expert
Consulting a heraldry expert can be helpful in understanding your family's crest. They can provide valuable information on the symbols and charges used in your family's crest and what they represent. A heraldry expert can also help you create a new crest or update an existing one.
Uncovering the hidden meanings of your family crest can be a fascinating and meaningful experience. The symbols, charges, crest, and motto all have significant meanings that represent your family's heritage, identity, and values. Understanding these meanings can help you gain a deeper appreciation for your family's history and tradition. So, start your research today and uncover the hidden meanings of your family crest!