Heraldry is the profession, study, or art of creating, granting, and blazoning arms and ruling on questions of rank or protocol, as exercised by an officer of arms. To most heraldry is the practice of designing, displaying, describing, and recording coats of arms and heraldic badges. Historically, it has been variously described as “the shorthand of history” and “the floral border in the garden of history”. Though the practice of heraldry is nearly 900 years old, it is still very much in use. Many cities and towns in Europe and around the world still make use of arms. A coat of arms is a unique heraldic design on a shield, escutcheon, surcoat, or tabard. A coat of arms is used to cover, protect, and identify the wearer. Thus the term is often stated as “coatarmour”, because it was anciently displayed on the front of a coat of cloth in European societies.
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