What The Blazons!: Heraldry in History And The Here and Now (Saturday, November 10th, 1-4 pm GMT)

by Jessica Secmezsoy-Urquhart and The Centre for Research Collections, Edinburgh

St. Cecilia’s Hall, The University of Edinburgh, 50 Niddry St, Cowgate EH1 1NQ

From Meghan Markle’s coat of arms to examples of heraldry in Harry Potter, Game of Thrones and Outlander, heraldry is as relevant today as it was 300 or 700 years ago. Join the CRC at St. Cecilia’s Hall just off the Royal Mile for an unmissable engagement event. You will have the unique chance to see heraldry from the CRC and enjoy group discussion and talks on heraldry as well as its surprising connections to media, animals, class, gender and place, today and in the past. Guests delivering talks include: Elizabeth Roads, the first woman appointed as an officer of arms, genealogist, broadcaster and author Dr. Bruce Durie and Dr. Gillian Black, expert in family law and modern heraldry. 

You will also get the chance to take part in an interactive art activity creating arms using what you’ve learnt, with artist Thomas Secmezsoy-Urquhart on hand to help or make an example for you.

Entertainment which a difference will come from Edinburgh University’s Medieval Reenactment Society, who will be showing us a demonstration of combat and bringing the era in which Heraldry was popularised to life through costume, displays and replicas.

Refreshments and snacks will be provided.

Come for the fun and learn something new about the role of Heraldry in our lives, in history and in the here and now.

Full Schedule of Events:

  • 12.50-1pm: Arrival begins. Music playing in the museum. Reenactment people display. Possible chance to see item examples, digital and physical.
  • 1:20pm: Main Talk/presentation starts presented by Jessica Secmezsoy-Urquhart, Engagement Intern.
  • 1:55-2:10pm: Bruce Durie, Gillian Black and Elizabeth Roads (the first woman officer of arms in the world) present 3 five minute talks on the specificity of Scottish Heraldry, the role of gender in modern heraldry and inheritance law and either a day in the life of a herald/ the process of getting your coat of arms.
  • 2:10-2:25pm: Break for refreshments. Reenactment people again doing demo.
  • 2:25-2:55pm: Debate/Talk/Discussion.
  • 2:55pm: Heraldry art creation activity and a chance to check out the collection. Artist will be on hand to help anyone.
  • 4pm: Conclusion and food/drinks.
  • 4:30pm: Finish.



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