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A Canadian Heraldic Primer

A Canadian Heraldic Primer    
Format Softcover
Catalogue No. 0-96930-634-2
Pages 56
Language English only
Price $14.95
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Written by Dr. Kevin Greaves.
Published by The Heraldry Society of Canada, 2001.


Heraldry is now, heraldry is fun, and most of all, heraldry is Canadian. A Canadian Heraldic Primer dispels, once and for all, the myth that coats of arms are boring, snobbish, mediaeval holdovers that have no relevance today.

Using cartoons, humour, and not a little irreverence (in which is concealed a surprising amount of information), Kevin Greaves explains the history behind heraldry’s unique conventions and language, and explores its creative possibilities. He shows heraldry as a part of Canada’s past, present and future, and illustrates how this lively art has become even livelier since Canada became master of its own heraldic system in 1988.

In addition to its interest for the general reader, the Primer will find its place as an aid to teachers, since its informality of presentation and layout are attractive to young people.

Despite its light touch, the book is entirely authoritative, and includes forewords by the Governor General and the Chief Herald of Canada.

The Primer covers five main areas:
  • the history and development of heraldry in Europe;
  • the unique conventions and language of the art;
  • specialized types of heraldry: corporate and ecclesiastical arms;
  • heraldry in a Canadian context: the Canadian Heraldic Authority; arms for women; aboriginal heraldry; the development oft distinctive Canadian heraldic style;
  • how to design, apply for and use your own arms.
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This page last modified: May 15, 2001

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