Two Coats of Arms With Phoenix

Dublin Core


Two Coats of Arms With Phoenix


These two coats of arms can be found in a nineteenth century Florence manuscript filled with a catalog of hundreds of coats of arms. On the left, a red shield with a white Phoenix (a figure of ancient Greek mythology that is part-cat and part-bird) holding a sword represents "Grosetto." Perhaps this is the family, or perhaps this is a region or seat of nobility in the area surrounding Florence. The nearly-identical white shield to its right -- depicting a yellow Phoenix holding a black sword -- suggests that potentially a relative slightly altered the original coat of arms.
Of course, the Phoenix itself is an interesting choice for a coat of arms. The coat of arms is supposed to serve several purposes, but it is ultimately an identifier, and an assertion of power. The Phoenix holding a sword suggests that these specific coats of arms were intended to reflect military power of some capacity. Indeed, one can take the unusual figure of the Phoenix to be a representation of some mythological power, and the addition of the sword provides a grounding of that power in the manifestation of a real physical instrument of power.


Photo by Mei-Li Thompson


"Codice araldico fiorentino," Florence.


19th Century


Two Coats of Arms.jpg


Photo by Mei-Li Thompson, “Two Coats of Arms With Phoenix,” War & Conquest in Medieval Europe, accessed July 13, 2020,