Introduction You have just received your own fief! It is necessary for you to design your personal Coat of Arms. To do this you must research information on Heraldry. What is Heraldry? Heraldry was the art of using symbols, colors, and designs to create meaning for a Coat of Arms. This would be handed down from father to son. There were symbols to show the birth order of sons. The oldest inherited the original Coat of Arms. Girls did not inherit. They became part of their husband's family and were represented by that Coat of Arms.
The Task You will design your own Coat of Arms. Be sure the design symbolizes an interest or event in your life. As you visit the sites in the Resources section, take notes on anything of interest to you. Remember that the number of colors and the color itself were symbols, as were animals, birds, mythical creatures, objects, lines, and geometric designs. A motto was often used and could be used as a war-cry or slogan. If a motto was used, it was often shown on a scroll under the shield.
The Process There are three parts to this process of designing your Coat of Arms:
Go to the Resources section below. Visit the sites listed there to answer questions on the Coat of Arms worksheet. Take notes on anything interesting that you see.
Use the Coat of Arms template provided to sketch a rough draft of your design on scrap paper. Choose colors and symbols that represent who you are--an interest or event in your life. You will then give it to the "herald" (your teacher) for review. Once your design has been approved, then draw and color it on the copy provided.
Write a description of your Coat of Arms on the back of the worksheet. See the Conclusion section for details.
Resources Don't forget to use the electronic databases--access them from the main library webpage.
The Origins of Heraldry - Clare County Library Here you'll find information about how heraldry began and why.
Fleur-de-lis Designs Cool website with lots of information about heraldry! Be sure to check out the links for About Heraldry, Symbolism, and Samples.
Mists of Antiquity: Origin of Fleur de lis Here is a short history that tells about the fleur de lis's history. At the bottom of the article are additional links with more information.
Heraldry of the World Though there are lots of advertisements, this site has thousands of samples of real Coats of Arms for individuals and countries.
How to Make An Authentic Medieval Coat of Arms This website has lots of information about the history of Coats of Arms, plus suggestions for designing your own.
Online Heraldry Game Here's a fun game to play after you've finished your own Coat of Arms.
Evaluation You will be evaluated on the worksheet and your Coat of Arms design. The worksheet will be graded on answers in complete sentences that are accurate and explain completely. Your Coat of Arms will be graded on neatness, color, and creativity. It should also accurately reflect the meaning of the symbols used.
Conclusion On the back of the worksheet, write a description of your Coat of Arms. This should be neat and well-written. It must explain the designs, colors, and symbols on your Coat of Arms. In addition, you should state why you chose the symbols you did and what message they are giving about you or something you have experienced.