One of the questions often asked of family historians is whether their family has a coat of arms. Until recently, I had to say that we had found no evidence of any grant of arms to anyone bearing one of the name variants we are researching. Until that is, I had a surprise visit from Ernest William Lindfield of Shearwater, Tasmania, who was in England on holiday. Ernest left with me a photograph of the coat of arms, or more strictly, the Armorial Bearings, which had recently been granted to him in recognition of his public service.
Our printing process cannot really do justice to the colour photograph, but I have copied out the wording of the Warrant, which readers may find of interest. There are plenty of good books around on heraldry which will provide a translation of the rather arcane terminology!
ARMORIAL BEARINGS GRANTED TO ERNEST WILLIAM LINDFIELD
His Grace’s Warrant (Earl Marshal and Hereditary Marshal of England) and by virtue of the Letters Patent of My Office granted to Me by the Queen’s Most Excellent Majesty do by these Presents grant and assign unto the said ERNEST WILLIAM LINDFIELD the Arms following that is to say:- Quarterly Azure and Or in the first and fourth quarters a Martlet wings displayed and addorsed in the second and third a Mullet all counterchanged on a Pale Ermine a Caduceus Gold And for the Crest upon a Helm with a Wreath Argent Or and Azure A Tasmanian Tiger rampant holding in the sinister paw a pair of Scales Or and in the dexter a Cutlass proper Mantled Azure doubled Party Or and Argent And I further grant and assign the following Device or Badge that is to say: Upon a Aboriginal Spear and a Didgeridoo in saltire proper an Eagle displayed Or all within a wreath of Greater Bird of Paradise Tail Feathers proper as the same are in the margin hereof more plainly depicted to be borne and used forever hereafter by the said ERNEST WILLIAM LINDFIELD and by his descendants with their due and proper differences and according to the Laws of Arms.
Our congratulations to Ernest on achieving this honour, and on being, as far as we know, the first Lindfield to be entitled to a coat of arms.