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Life at the Castle

Coat of Arms: Heraldry


During The Middle Ages, knights used a coat of arms to identify themselves, which was especially useful in battle. In a society where few people could read and write, pictures were very important.

Classroom Activity: Create Your Coat of Arms

Traditional Colors: Black, Royal Purple, Emerald Green, Royal Blue or Sky Blue, Bright Red Metals: Gold (yellow) and Silver (white)

The basic rule is "metal on color or color on metal, but not metal on metal or color on color." This means that the field (the background) on the shield can be either a metal or a color.

Animals were frequently used as a main charge. They were not drawn to look three dimensional, but were shown as if they were flat. The pictures were to represent the animal as a symbol: Lion, Bear, Boar, Eagle, Horse, Dragon, Griffin.

Use these medieval symbols and mythical creatures to create your own shield or family coat of arms and explain the reason for your choices.

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