Monday, July 23, 2012

Heraldry in the News!

There’s an interesting little article published July 6, 2012, on the website 65° North: News and Views from Oulo, Finland, about Oulo’s coat of arms and heraldry in Finland generally.

In addition to touching upon the arms of Oulo (above), there are excerpts from interviews with several heraldry enthusiasts and what coats of arms mean and who can bear them.  (The short answer: In Finland, anybody.)

My favorite line was a quote from a Swedish heraldist who said that “What a surname is for the ears, the coat of arms is for the eyes.”  (I make a not terribly dissimilar point in some of my presentations introducing heraldry to genealogists, in that a coat of arms is like a name tag or a graphic ID; it says that “I am so-and-so” and, by extension, that “I belong to such-and-such a family.”)

It’s a nice little article, and something from a little farther north than I usually see.  You can find the article “Finns Still Taking Up Arms” on-line at:

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