Tag Archives: Knights/Militant Ranks

Heraldry and Titles of Rank

Vicki’s note – “Heraldry Websites for Genealogy” is an article from FamilyTreeMagazine.com  on a topic that we don’t often see.  Interesting to read that Coat of Arms does not = Surname.  I still claim the few  Coats of Arms that I know associated with some of my ancestor’s surnames, and “my” Muir family castle in Ireland.

I think in America (U.S.A), that we don’t concern ourselves much with the conventions of heraldry and distinctions of  titles of rank.  I even saw places on-line where anyone can buy title of rank, so I think that the whole world’s attitude toward the (mostly former) formal distinctions is relaxing.

This is not to insult my BLOG’s British, Scottish, and Irish, etc. viewers.  I do realize that titles of rank are still very important and current in your cultures.

I am adding all of these links to my BLOG “Genealogy Links and Electronic Helps” page.

And wow – look at the rare gem of a website that I found today.  You get two related articles/sources in one Posting –

Read more about the Titles of Rank in this really extensive website.  After reading through these lists, I may have to reconsider my statement about “mostly former distinctions” above.  My anthropological and history background reminds me that humans have set up hierarchies and named distinctions as an on-going aspect of being part of human cultures.

There are a lot of wide-ranging lists here at – http://www.sunderedspheres.com/titles-of-rank.html

That website includes:

“Ranks of All Nations Possible” historic & modern – i.e.

Royal and Noble Ranks, Modern and Historic Military Ranks, Modern and Historic Political Ranks,  Modern and Historic Religious Hierarchy, Monastic ranks, Knights/Militant Ranks,  Historical Titles and Classes, Scots, Welsh, Irish, British, Byzantine, Estonian, French, Germanic, German, Saxon, Gothic, Greek, Hungarian, Italian, Languedoc (Southern French), Norse, Roman Empire, Russian, Slovenian, Spanish, Egyptian (Ancient), Hausa & Mali, Hindustani,  Islamic/Religious, Japanese, Mongol, Moorish, Persian, Semitic & Hebrew, Swahili, Turkic, Turkish, Chileno, United States, and Miscellaneous Ranks

The first part of that website states:

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Titles of Rank

Ranks and their Definitions:

The following social ranks are given from highest to lowest instead of alphabetically.  The titles given are first male then female, and the etymology is terrestrial.  

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Heraldry Websites for Genealogy

7/21/2017
This list of resources will get you started in researching heraldry.

Myth: Many surnames have a coat of arms.

Fact: Coats of arms are not attached to a surname, but rather to an individual. People with the same surname may be entitled to different coats of arms, or not have one at all, unless they can prove that they are directly descended from a legitimate male member of that line – or one is granted to them.

Are you researching heraldry?

Here are some resources to start:

The American Heraldry Society

Heraldica

College of Arms

Heraldry for Genealogists 

Institute of Heraldic and Genealogical Studies—UK

American College of Heraldry

Coats of Arms from Ireland

And just for fun, this website explores the real history, heraldry and family trees that inspire Game of Thrones. Warning: contains spoilers.