Duchess of Sussex's arms

The discussion board for all things concerning heraldry which falls under the jurisdiction of The College of Arms
User avatar
Arthur Radburn
Posts: 1124
Joined: 11 Jul 2012, 09:56

Duchess of Sussex's arms

Postby Arthur Radburn » 25 May 2018, 20:41

The Duchess of Sussex's arms have been revealed :

Image

From the official statement on the Royal Family's website :

"The blue background of the shield represents the Pacific Ocean off the California coast, while the two golden rays across the shield are symbolic of the sunshine of The Duchess's home state. The three quills represent communication and the power of words.

"Beneath the shield on the grass sits a collection of golden poppies, California's state flower, and wintersweet, which grows at Kensington Palace.

"The Supporter relating to The Duchess of Sussex is a songbird with wings elevated as if flying and an open beak, which with the quill represents the power of communication.

"Mr. Thomas Woodcock, Garter King of Arms said: "The Duchess of Sussex took a great interest in the design. Good heraldic design is nearly always simple and the Arms of The Duchess of Sussex stand well beside the historic beauty of the quartered British Royal Arms. Heraldry as a means of identification has flourished in Europe for almost nine hundred years and is associated with both individual people and great corporate bodies such as Cities, Universities and for instance the Livery Companies in the City of London."
Regards
Arthur Radburn
IAAH Vice-President : Heraldic Education

User avatar
Terry Baldwin
Posts: 824
Joined: 23 Mar 2014, 16:31
Location: Rocklin, California, USA

Re: Duchess of Sussex's arms

Postby Terry Baldwin » 26 May 2018, 02:06

Beautiful design and inclusive of the Duchess' heritage from here in the US.
Regards,

Terry Baldwin
IAAH Vice President: Heraldic Design

User avatar
Martin Goldstraw
Site Admin
Posts: 1337
Joined: 21 Apr 2010, 17:27
Location: Shropshire, England.
Contact:

Re: Duchess of Sussex's arms

Postby Martin Goldstraw » 26 May 2018, 17:18

Artist Robert Parson, College of Arms.
Martin Goldstraw
Cheshire Heraldry
http://cheshire-heraldry.org.uk

User avatar
Arthur Radburn
Posts: 1124
Joined: 11 Jul 2012, 09:56

Re: Duchess of Sussex's arms

Postby Arthur Radburn » 27 May 2018, 15:33

According to Reuters, who do not name their source, the blazon is : “Azure a Feather bendwise Argent quilled between two Bendlets Or all between two like Feathers Argent quilled Or”.
Regards
Arthur Radburn
IAAH Vice-President : Heraldic Education

User avatar
Chris Green
Posts: 3294
Joined: 10 Jul 2012, 13:06
Location: Karlstad, Sweden

Re: Duchess of Sussex's arms

Postby Chris Green » 18 Jan 2020, 21:00

So the Duke and Duchess of Sussex will no longer be Their Royal Highnesses. This makes their titles on a par with Sarah, Duchess of York, though the reason for the change is different and the decision seems to have come from the Duke himself (which suggests that they might be able to resume the HRH at some future date) whereas the Duchess of York lost her HRH by Letters Patent dated 21 August 1996. I am guessing that their arms will remain unaltered, whereas the Duchess of York's did not.
Chris Green
IAAH President

Bertilak de Hautdesert

User avatar
Arthur Radburn
Posts: 1124
Joined: 11 Jul 2012, 09:56

Re: Duchess of Sussex's arms

Postby Arthur Radburn » 19 Jan 2020, 13:19

As I understand the announcement, they will remain HRHs but simply not use the title after the new arrangement comes into effect later this year. They are evidently still using the title at the moment, as an update posted on their website yesterday refers to them as "Their Royal Highnesses". Presumably they will be addressed as "Your Grace" in the future.

There certainly doesn't seem to be any reason to alter their arms. He remains the son of the heir apparent and grandson of the monarch, so the coronet and the label are still appropriate. And as a duke and duchess they are still entitled to supporters. In the next reign, as younger son of the monarch, he would be entitled to the appropriate coronet for that position.

Despite all the hoohaa, this is not entirely unprecedented. Prince Edward, Earl of Wessex's children are entitled to be styled HRH Prince(ss) ... of Wessex, but in practice the son uses his father's second title by courtesy and the daughter is simply 'Lady'. And a century or so ago, Princess Patricia of Connaught gave up her titles as HRH and Princess when she married a commoner, and was given the title of 'Lady' as if she were the daughter of a non-royal duke instead of a royal one, but kept her arms.
Regards
Arthur Radburn
IAAH Vice-President : Heraldic Education

Jonathan Webster
Posts: 304
Joined: 11 Jul 2012, 21:47
Location: United Kingdom

Re: Duchess of Sussex's arms

Postby Jonathan Webster » 30 May 2020, 21:19

One thing I am curious about: these arms were I believe granted to the Duchess of Sussex herself rather than her father. So if that's the case then that makes her an heraldic heiress. So that rather then begs the question:

Why are her arms impaled with those of the Duke of Sussex rather than borne on an inescutcheon of pretence?

It can't be an 'arms of the Royal Family are a whole different animal to those of mere mortals' thing, because the arms of HRH the Duchess of Gloucester are borne over those of her husband in the marital achievement (she is estranged from her father), being as it was she was also granted arms in her own right, as opposed to say, HRH the Duchess of Cambridge, where the arms were granted to her father.

Strange. Does anyone have any insight?

User avatar
Arthur Radburn
Posts: 1124
Joined: 11 Jul 2012, 09:56

Re: Duchess of Sussex's arms

Postby Arthur Radburn » 05 Jun 2020, 14:48

I think the answer is that it's because she is a grantee, not an heiress. And her father is still alive, anyway, so even if they had been granted to him, she would not become his heraldic heiress unless and until he died.
Regards
Arthur Radburn
IAAH Vice-President : Heraldic Education

User avatar
Chris Green
Posts: 3294
Joined: 10 Jul 2012, 13:06
Location: Karlstad, Sweden

Re: Duchess of Sussex's arms

Postby Chris Green » 05 Jun 2020, 19:31

The Duchess of Sussex has an older (paternal) half-brother and an older (paternal) half-sister, so she could never be an heiress, heraldic or otherwise.
Chris Green
IAAH President

Bertilak de Hautdesert

Jonathan Webster
Posts: 304
Joined: 11 Jul 2012, 21:47
Location: United Kingdom

Re: Duchess of Sussex's arms

Postby Jonathan Webster » 05 Jun 2020, 23:52

Chris Green wrote:The Duchess of Sussex has an older (paternal) half-brother and an older (paternal) half-sister, so she could never be an heiress, heraldic or otherwise.


Ah I see, thank you.


Return to “College of Arms”

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 2 guests