The Association is pleased to have an eminent heraldic scholar who has consented to act as its Patron.
Cecil R. J. Humphery-Smith OBE
Announcement Tuesday 19th January 2021
We regret to announce the passing of our patron, Cecil Humphery-Smith OBE, aged 92. As members may know, he was a leading figure in heraldry and genealogy in England, and was honoured with the OBE (Officer of the Order of the British Empire) for "services in education to genealogy and heraldry", in 2004. He was patron of the IAAH for eighteen and a half years, from July 2002 until his death.
He had also taught courses for the Oxford University Department for Extra-Mural Studies and subsequently for the University of Kent School of Continuing Education. He also lectured and broadcast on radio and TV widely abroad in North America and in Europe.
As Principal of the Institute in Canterbury he established a successful correspondence course and graded assessment examination structure which enjoy world wide recognition and acclaim. These examinations lead to accredited diploma and licentiate awards.
He was involved with the following organizations:
- Founded The Institute of Heraldic and Genealogical Studies, taking it to Northgate, Canterbury in 1961
- Councillor and Academician of l'Academie Internationale d'Héraldique
- Vice-President of the Heraldry Society
- Fellow of the Royal Heraldry Society of Canada
- Secretary-General of the XIIIth International Congress of Genealogy and Heraldry (London 1976)
- Secretary-General of the VIIIth Colloquium International d'Héraldique (Canterbury 1993)
- Member of the Bureau Permanent des Congres Internationaux des Sciences Généalogique et Héraldique since 1974 (Secretary-General 1994-97)
Following post-doctoral research on
antibiotics as a biochemist he spent some twenty years in
the field of food quality control whilst also studying
archives and lecturing on subjects auxiliary to history
for London and other Universities (1951-1996). With
heraldry as a hobby since childhood, he established the
first School for Family History Studies in 1957 and in
1961 founded the Institute. He was appointed a
Vice-President of The Cambridge University Heraldry
Society in 1954 and is closely associated with several
other national and international organisations in the
field. Avid Bergman laureate and d'Altenstein Prize for
heraldic studies (1961). Prix Dalenda for medieval studies
(1995) and Gustav von Numers prize for portfolio of
heraldic art and design (1996). Freedom of the City of
London since 1967, he was liveried of the Broiderers
Company and Scriveners Company (Court member and honorary
historian). Knight of Obedience, Order of St John, SMOM.
Fellow of the Society of Antiquaries and several other
societies in the fields of study internationally. A
frequent broadcaster on radio and previously on
television, he was the author of many books, standard
reference sources and numerous learned articles.
Mr Humphery-Smith was appointed an Officer of the Order of the British Empire (OBE) in the Birthday Honours List, 2004.