Coats of Arms
from Ireland and around the World by Eddie Geoghegan
Featuring free coats of arms for over 10,000 surnames
This site is a gallery of coats of arms or heraldic graphics. It is
FREE. You may browse as much as you want for as long as you want. No
membership is required and there is no limit to how many coats of
arms graphics you may view. I ask just a few simple things.
If you are in the market for heraldic services, graphics or products, please try www.araltas.com first. Araltas is the site where I ply my commercial wares.
Please don't email me with requests for free stuff. My time is limited and time is money. On this page you will find a request form if you want to ask for a particular graphic to be added. But remember, I am just another regular person trying to make a living, so if it comes to a choice between making you happy and making some money - guess what will win out. You will get my attention a lot quicker if you use my commercial services.
There are a few adverts on this site. These help defray the cost of hosting and are not meant to frustrate your browsing experience. Adverts are obvious and not hidden.
If you want to link to this site, that's great, but please link to this entry page http://www.heraldry.ws/index.html
On this site you will find . . .
Thousands of FREE coats of arms from Ireland and around the world in GIF/JPG format. Of necessity and quite deliberately, these are of smaller size and lower resolution than graphics I create to order. Use the alphabetical index on the left to navigate to the coat of arms of interest to you. If you cannot see the index, click here
Featured coat of arms. From time to time I add a new feature page for one family which includes a full graphic of the coat of arms and as much family history as I can find. Take me there
The Roll of Arms and a Gallery to display samples of the products I supply to order. Out of necessity, the graphics on this web site are of smaller size and lower resolution than those produced to order. They may also be incomplete in that they may not show a recorded crest or motto. To view samples of full size and high resolution, visit The Roll of Arms or The Gallery
Articles directly or indirectly relating to Heraldry / Surnames / Ireland / Scotland / etc. Take me there
The customs and practice of heraldry (otherwise known as Heraldry 101). Take me there
The Irish Language as I use it to display the Irish (Gaelic) version of surnames on coats of arms graphics. Take me there
WWW.ARALTAS.COM, the Internet Heraldry Shop, where you can order research, graphics, prints and other heraldic products including etched glass, plaques, watches and more, all based on my designs. Take me there
To request the addition of a particular coat of arms graphic to this site go here.
As you browse this
site please keep a few points in mind.
Although there are thousands of coats of arms here, these represent only a small percentage of all those that have been used over the centuries. I have been compiling this collection for many, many years and will continue to add to it as time permits. I doubt very much, however, that it will ever approach completion. If you want a graphic of a coat of arms not on this site, please use my commercial services. For small fee, not only will you get a high resolution graphic, but it will also include additional features such as crest and motto, which are probably not included on the examples here.
Some people comment that many of the coats of arms here are similar to each other. There's a simple explanation for that. In the first place, many coats of arms are far from unique and the same arms are often borne by different families and individuals. Sometimes this is by design, for example in Poland, where many persons of different surnames bore the arms of their clan or szlachta. In Britain (and therefore also in Ireland) heraldry was regulated by Kings of Arms, who from a heraldic point of view administered their territories somewhat independently of their peers. For that reason the same coat of arms might well be granted in one jurisdiction without any regard for its current use in another. From my point of view, when I am drawing a coat of arms for one family, I often check if other families bore the same or similar arms and while I am creating the first graphic, I may also create a series of other, identical or similar ones that apply to other families. Similarly, visitors sometimes remark on the fact that I show more than one coat of arms for the same name. This is simply because individuals with the same surname, perhaps even within the same family, adopted distinct coats of arms. The next questions is usually, "well which one is mine?" The short answer (generally speaking) is that I don't know. If you really want to identify with a specific coat of arms, then you need to research your own genealogy and family history before you can even begin to answer that question. And, by the way, I am neither genealogist or family historian. Sometimes I will be able to give you a clue, especially in rgard to Irish families. For example, if your name is Murphy and your ancestor came from Wexford, then, more than likely this is the most appropriate coat of arms for you and if you're a Murphy from Cork then this is what you want but if you are a Murphy from Donegal (and that's all you know) then your guess is as good as mine. If your name is Smith and you know nothing about your ancestry, then look forward to days, months and years of research. On this topic, while I have some knowledge regarding Irish families and their histories, as you drift further from this fair isle, my knowledge tapers of very rapidly. Another frequent question asks why the arms shown on my site are different from those shown on (an)other sites(s). There are many reasons. Artists differ - heraldry in not an exact science and much is left to the artist in drawing any coat of arms. The look of the symbols, shape of the shield, the level of ornamentation and even the shades of colour used can vary quite a bit. The other site may be displaying a different coat of arms for the same name, given that for many names, multiple coats of arms are on record. Finally the other site may be displaying a totally incorrect coat of arms (not an uncommon happening, especially when it comes to Irish coats of arms). Remember that many coats of arms sites use the same database of information and even the same graphics files, while I create my own. An error replicated across multiple websites is still an error, no matter how often it appears.
I am often asked where I find the coats of arms on this site. Let me state a few things in regard to this question. Every coat of arms I draw has been taken from a historical source. Some may argue that some of these sources may be less than totally accurate. While I tend to ignore those that are riddled with inaccuracies (for example the arms shown in "Irish Pedigrees" by O'Hart - which were added after the author's death and Paul Murtaugh's Arms in "Atlas Cyclopedia of Ireland") I generally assume these other sources to be accurate. Please don't ask for my source for a particular coat of arms. Often it takes as long to check it as it did to find it in the first place and I simply don't have the time. All requests for specific sources will be ignored unless submitted in writing on the back of a 10 euro (or other hard currency) note. If you want to look it up for yourself, I'm sure you local library will have a copy of the publications listed below. Here is a (non-exhaustive) list of my sources.
Families", Edward Mac Lysaght - First Chief Herald of Ireland,
Irish Academic Press, 4th Edition 1985, reprinted 1991
"The General Armory (of England, Scotland, Wales and Ireland)", Sir Bernard Burke - Ulster King of Arms Heraldry Today, 1884, Reprinted 1996.
"Landed Gentry of Ireland (Genealogical and Heraldic History of the)". Sir Bernard Burke 1912.
"Landed Gentry of Great Britain and Ireland (Genealogical and Heraldic History of the)." John / Bernard Burke - a series started 1876.
"Armorial Families - A Directory of Gentlemen of Coat Armour" Arthur Charles Fox-Davies
"The British Herald or Cabinet of Armorial Bearings of the Nobility & Gentry of Great Britain & Ireland" by Thomas Robson 1830
"Ordinary of British Armorials" by John W. Papworth, completed by Alfred W. Morant. 1874 reprinted 1985
"Armorial General" J.B. Rietstap, 1884, Heraldry Today, Reprinted 1988
"American Armory" by Charles Knowles Bolton.
"Crozier's General Armory" - William Armstrong Crozier
"Virginia County Records. Vol. V: Virginia Heraldica A Registry of Virginia Gentry Entitled to Coat Armor" - William Armstrong Crozier
"Fairbairn's Book of Crests of the Families of Great Britain and Ireland" - James Fairbairn
"Complete American Armoury and Blue Book" - John Matthews
"An Ordinary of Arms: Contained in the Public Register of All Arms and Bearings in Scotland" - Sir James Balfour Paul
"America Heraldica" Edited by E. de V. Vermont, 1965
"The Irish Book of Arms" by Michael C. O'Loughlin.
"Scottish Clan and Family Names - Their Arms, Origins and Tartans" by Roddy Martine revised edition 1992.
"American Armory and Blue Book." 1903 1907 1911-1923. By John Matthews.
"Armorial de l'Association de la Noblesse Française"
"Armorial de France et d'Europe." Frédéric Luz
Hozier's "Armorial Général." 1696
"l'Armorial Universel" - Jouffroy d'Eschavannes
"Commoners of Great Britain and Ireland (A genealogical and heraldic history of the)". John Burke 1835.
"Encyclopoedia Heraldica - Dictionary of Heraldry". William Berry - College of Heraldry. 4 Volumes 1828-40.
"Grand Armorial de France" - Jougla de Morenas
"Sceaux Armoriés de Pays-Bays et de Pays Avoisinants" J.Th de Raadt 1898
The Heralds' Visitations. Records of the visitation of the heralds to various parts of the United Kingdom for the purpose of recording family coats of arms and pedigrees.
Enjoy your visit - Eddie
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