And so we come to the end of another year – the third for this blog. And I would like to take the time to once again thank you, everyone who has dropped by and read the posts here over the past year. Thank you all!
It continues to amaze me, and gratify me, and humble me, the places from which visitors to this blog come. I regularly go out to check the latest statistics from SiteMeter, which tells me from which countries the most recent 100 visitors to the site originated. (I never get any personal information; at most it gives me the country, region, and sometimes city of a visitor's internet service provider. That’s as “personal” as it gets.) The Cluster Map and the Flag Index down in the left-hand column here also are an indication of the origins of visitors to this blog. As I write this, the ten most recent visitors have come from: South Carolina, France (Paris), California, Russia, France (Toulon), Thailand, Singapore, New Hampshire, South Africa, and Canada. And periodically a visitor will surprise me, coming from some place unexpected: South Korea, or Kuwait, Egypt, Libya, the Canary Islands. Saudi Arabia. Israel. China. The Islamic Republic of Iran. Vietnam. Not places where you would necessarily expect to find much, or even any, interest in some blog about heraldry and coats of arms by some Yank in Texas, of all places. So, as I said: I am amazed, and gratified, and humbled. I never really expected, when I began, to reach such a literally worldwide, globe-encircling audience.
Once again, to all of you who have stopped by to read these posts, I hope that you have at least learned a little something new, or been entertained for a moment, or even better, both. Thank you for dropping by, and I look forward to continuing to write about this esoteric topic we call heraldry, in the hopes of continuing to show you something new, or old, or maybe just entertain you for a moment.
To end this year’s posts, I thought I’d include a painting of my own (self-assumed) coat of arms from the Dublin Roll, a roll of arms of the attendees and participants in the 2002 International Congress of Genealogical and Heraldic Sciences,* made by the Office of the Chief Herald of Ireland.
* My presentation that year was entitled "New Directions in Heraldry". If you are interested, a copy of it can be found on my website at http://www.appletonstudios.com/Congress2002DBA.pdf .