Kate Middleton might be a commoner until she marries Prince William next Friday, but her transition into Britain’s royal family just took another step forward: The prince’s fiancee and her family are getting their own coats of arms.
In February, I wrote that acquiring a coat of arms was on the bride-to-be’s to-do list and that a British newspaper had reported that “an insignia is a prerequisite for those marrying into the Royal Family.” After her wedding, Kate is expected to place her father’s coat of arms next to the arms of her husband, in what is known as an “impaled coat of arms.”
A post this morning on William and Kate’s official wedding Web site announced that Kate’s new coat of arms is based on the one her family has been granted:
The three acorns represent Mr. and Mrs. Middleton’s three children (Catherine, Philippa and James). Acorns were chosen because the area in which the children were brought up — West Berkshire, England — is surrounded by oak trees. Additionally, oak is a long-established symbol of both “England” and “Strength.”
The gold chevron, which sits at the centre of the design, represents Mrs. Middleton, whose maiden name is Goldsmith. The two thinner chevrons, which sit either side of the gold chevron, allude to hills and mountains and represent outdoor pursuits that the family enjoy together. The colours blue and red were chosen as they are the principle colours from the flag of the United Kingdom.
Miss Middleton’s Coat of Arms has been presented in the form of a “lozenge” and is shown suspended from a ribbon, which indicates that she is an unmarried daughter.
Mr. Thomas Woodcock, Garter King of Arms said:
“Mr. and Mrs. Middleton and their children took enormous interest in this design and, while its purpose is to provide a traditional heraldic identity for Catherine, as she marries into the Royal Family, the intent was to represent the whole Middleton family together, their home and aspects of what they enjoy.”