Norwegian heraldry

Norwegian Heraldry

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Norwegian heraldry

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Description:
Norwegian heraldry has roots in early medieval times, soon after the use of coats of arms first appeared in continental Europe. Some of the medieval coats of arms are rather simple of design, while others have more naturalistic charges. The king-granted coats of arms of later times, were usually detailed and complex. Especially in the late 1600s and the 1700s, many ennobled persons and families received coats of arms with shields containing both two and four fields, and some even with a heart shield above these.

There are very few civic arms dating from before 1900, and the main part of today's governmental and civic arms are from the last decades of the 20th century. Today the public arms are popular in Norway and they are used quite much by the official authorities.

The Norwegian Heraldry Society is a private heraldic organisation.

Private heraldry and coats of arms

History

Coats of arms, and the use of them, evolved on the battle fields in early medieval times. Intended for simple and immediate identification of the person inside the armour, the first arms were of rather basical design.

The king-granted personal arms of later times, were detailed and complex. Especially in the late 1600s and the 1700s, many ennobled persons and families received coats of arms with shields containing both two and four fields, and some even with a heart shield above these.

While the arms of the old nobility were of ancient origin and inherited through generations within each family, and...
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