Saturday, November 20, 2010

Barbados Coat of Arms

I can still remember learning about our National Coat of arms as a child.  Today when I look at it it means so much more to me.

As I look over it, the things that it includes and that which they mean. Many things come to mind.
It includes a image of a fish to represent our fishing industry.The fish of itself  is said to be a dolphin however though wonderful looking it bears no resemblance to the dolphin fish.

The Pelican which for me is one of the saddest part as we no longer have these wonderful birds in Barbados.

The Bearded Fig tree on the shield holds two memories for me. It takes me back to my childhood when I would grab on to the hanging beard like vines and swing off the cliffs by my home. The other story I recall carries the story as to how Barbados got its name. This of course was when Pedro Campos saw these trees and said "Los Barbados" The bearded one.
The Flowers are of coarse our national flower "The Pride of Barbados" These are wonderful delicate yellow and orange flowers that can still be seen growing along roadsides and garden beds across the island.

Above the shield is a helmet and mantling and on a wreath is the arm and hand of a Barbadian holding two crossed pieces of sugar cane symbolic of the sugar industry. After studying the African Slave trade this means so much more to me.

 This is a saltire cross, the cross upon which Saint Andrew was crucified. Independence day in Barbados is celebrated on November 30, Saint Andrews Day.

The grant of arms conveyed by royal warrant was presented by Her Majesty the Queen to the President of the Senate of the island on February 14, 1966 on the occasion of the Royal Visit to Barbados.

Prior to this grant of Arms the only other heraldic device was the seal of the colony. It represented the British Sovereign in a shell chariot being drawn by two sea horses through foaming waves. The seal was changed when there was a new monarch. King sits in the chariot while the Queens stand.

The Coat of Arms carries the motto "Pride and Industry."

The Barbados Coat of Arms was designed by Mr. Neville C. Connell. Mr. Connell was a director of the Barbados Museum for almost 24 years. He was a prolific writer and contributed a great number of articles for the Museum Journals, local newspapers as well as publications overseas.

He was educated at Harrison College, Barbados and Fitzwilliam College, Cambridge. He was called to the Bar at Grey's Inn. He served in the Royal Artillery on the outbreak of war. After his discharge he worked in an Antique Dealer's business and was also Assistant Secretary of the Institute Practitioners in Advertising.

The Design of Barbados Coat of Arms was the result of extensive research conducted by Mr. Connell who was a student of Heraldy. He was assisted in this work by Mrs. Hilda Ince (now deceased), an excellent artist. The developmental sketches of the Coat of Arms remain in the possession of the Barbados Museum and Historical Society.

Mr. Connell died on January 19th, 1973 at the age of 66.

Bellow is a Extract from the Royal Warrant

Know ye therefore that We of Our Pricely

Grace and Special Favour have granted

and assigned and by these Presents do grant

and assign the following Armorial Ensigns for

Our Island of Barbados that is to say:-

For Arms: Or a Bearded Fig Tree eradicated

in Chief two Red Pride of Barbados Flowers

proper. And for the Crest; On a Wreath Or

and Gules A dexter Cubit Arm of a

Barbadian erect proper the hand of grasping

two Sugar Canes in saltire proper. And

for the supporters: On the dexter side a

Dolphin and on the sinister side a Pelican

proper, together with the Motto "Pride and

Industry", as the same are in the painting

hereunto annexed more plainly depicted

the whole to be borne and used for

our Island of Barbados - on Seals or

Otherwise according to the Laws of Arms.

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