More Clergy With Multiple Versions of Their Arms

A couple of years ago I wrote about clergy who make use of more than one version of their coats of arms depending on offices held or circumstances of use. Once again I’ve come across a fine example.

The current Lord Lyon King of Arms, the principal heraldic authority for Her Majesty in Scotland is not only a heraldic expert and a jurist but he is also an ordained clergyman in the Scottish Episcopal Church (a.k.a. the Anglican Church north of the border). The Rev. Canon Dr. Joseph John Morrow, CBE, KStJ, QC, DL, LLD possesses a very nice coat of arms of his own.


This coat of arms can be displayed all alone or, as Lord Lyon sometimes has chosen to do, with the helm, mantling and crest of the typical armorial achievement.


However, sometimes this coat of arms is also displayed with the external ornaments proper to the Office of Lord Lyon King of Arms.


Additionally, the Office of Lord Lyon has its own armorial bearings which may be used by the incumbent of the office of Lord Lyon in a “greater” form:


as well as a “lesser” or smaller version.


Finally, the current Lord Lyon may choose to impale his personal arms with those of Lord Lyon and display them with the external ornaments of the office, including the red lion supporters:


or he may impale his personal arms with the arms of office and display them with some of the external ornaments of Lord Lyon as well as his own crest and supporters.



Same man; same arms; many versions.

4 thoughts on “More Clergy With Multiple Versions of Their Arms

  1. CK Berntsen

    Of course he could also use a galero, but what this would look like for an Anglican Canon in Scotland I don’t know. As far as I know all priests, except Church of Scotland ministers, get the same hat.

    1. guyselvester Post author

      Lord Lyon grants the same galero that RC priests use to priests of the Scottish Episcopal Church as well.

      I wrote about the various emblazonments that Lord Lyon Morris has currently used. At present I have not yet seen his arms ensigned with an ecclesiastical hat.

  2. Nick R

    Pardon my asking for more information – as this is a fascinating post!… Could you provide more detail the external ornaments? The chain of the Thistle I recognize with the “simpler Lyon”, and I’m guessing one is the CBE, but I’m a bit puzzled on the others!
    Thanks… in advance, and for the blog generally!

    1. guyselvester Post author

      In the example of the full arms the large chain surrounding the shield is Lord Lyon’s Thistle Chain. The badge at the end of this one hangs in the center. To the left is the badge of Lord Lyon as Lord Lyon; to the right is the badge of the Chancellor of the Order of the Thistle.


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