The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge have received a new coat of arms, with the approval of Her Majesty, which represent the Duke and Duchess as a married couple.
The arms, which were approved earlier in the year by The Queen, will not replace the couple’s individual arms – which represent them personally.
Prince William received his coat of arms on the occasion of his 18th birthday, as is royal tradition. The Duchess of Cambridge takes hers as a variation of her father’s, which were granted to him shortly before the 2011 Royal Wedding.
The coat of arms was designed, as always, by the College of Arms – who are responsible for heraldic devices in England. The College work in the granting of new coats of arms; the registration of family trees; genealogical and heraldic research; advising central and local government, corporate bodies, and private individuals on all aspects of heraldry.
Kensington Palace explain, “The shield on the left is taken from Coat of Arms granted to The Duke of Cambridge by The Queen on his 18th birthday. It shows the various Royal emblems of different parts of the United Kingdom: the three lions of England in the first and fourth quarters, the lion of Scotland in the second and the harp of Ireland in the third.”
“It is surrounded by a blue garter bearing the motto Honi soit qui mal y pense (‘Shame to those who think evil of it’), which symbolises the Order of the Garter, of which The Duke is a Knight Companion.”
Though the coat of arms will be theirs forever, as they progress through life and come closer to becoming King and Queen, the arms may change accordingly.
For its placement in the conjugal Arms, The Duchess of Cambridge’s shield is surrounded by a Wreath of Oak, to balance out the Duke’s garter. This is traditional for Royal Spouses who are not themselves entitled to surround their Arms with an order of chivalry.
Anyone in England can petition for a coat of arms through the College of Arms, though the college’s Kings of Arms are to determine whether a candidate for arms is suitable. Typically, the designing and then registering of a coat of arms for an individual will cost £4,950.
In Scotland, heraldic devices are registered with the Lord Lyon, King of Arms.
Individuals and also companies as well as councils and places are also granted coats of arms.