|Coat of arms of the |
Grand Duchy of Luxembourg
|Armiger||Henri, Grand Duke of Luxembourg|
|Adopted||1235 current in 1972|
|Crest||The Grand-Ducal Crown|
|Blazon||Barry of ten Argent and Azure, a Lion rampant queue forchée Gules crowned, armed and langued Or.|
|Supporters||Two lions reguardant queue forchée crowned Or, armed and langued Gules|
|Order(s)||Order of the Oak Crown|
|Other elements||The whole resting on a Mantle Gules lined Ermine, fringed and tasseled Or, summoned to the Grand-Ducal Crown|
The coat of arms of Luxembourg has its origins in the Middle Ages and was derived from the arms of the Duchy of Limburg, in modern-day Belgium and the Netherlands. In heraldic language, the arms are described as: Barry of ten Argent and Azure, a Lion rampant queue forchée Gules crowned, armed and langued Or.
There are greater, middle and lesser versions of the coat of arms of Luxembourg. The greater coat of arms has two reguardant and crowned lions as supporters, the Dynastic Order (the Order of the Oak Crown) and all surrounded by ermine mantling crowned with a heraldic royal crown (the crown used by the Grand Duke). The middle coat of arms has the supporters, the order and the crown. The lesser coat of arms has the crown and the escutcheon without external ornaments.
Arms of the monarch
Quarterly: 1 and 4 Luxembourg, 2 and 3 Nassau (Blazon: Azure billetty Or, a lion or armed and langued Gules). The lesser variant of the arms of the monarch has no external ornaments. The middle variant has the supporters, the order and the crown.
The greater variant has a dynastic inescutcheon with the arms of the House of Bourbon-Parma (Blazon: Azure bordure Gules charged with eight escallops Argent, three fleurs-de-lys Or). The supporters are holding a lance Or, flying the flag of Luxembourg, all surrounded by ermine mantling with the crown.
The coat of arms adopted by Grand Duke Adolphe in 1898:
These arms were adopted in 1898 by Grand Duke Adolphe and used by him and his successors up until Grand Duke Jean. Upon acceding to the throne in 1964, Grand Duke Jean used the lesser and medium arms as adopted in 1898. The greater arms featuring the former territorial claims attached to the duchy of Nassau that was annexed by Prussia in 1866 were, however, unreflective of political reality of the time and were not used extensively: They were only used on the Great Seal of Grand Duke Jean.
Prior to acceding the throne, Grand Duke Jean made use of the following arms:
In 1939, a coat of arms for Prince Jean was created during the centenary celebrations of the independence of Luxembourg and to mark his reaching the age of majority. In 1953, another arms were created on the occasion of Jean's marriage to Princess Joséphine-Charlotte of Belgium.
The original coat of arms from 1890–1898:
Arms of the Hereditary Grand Duke
The current greater and lesser coats of arms for the Hereditary Grand Duke are currently prescribed by grand-ducal decree of 31 October 2012 and are similar to that of the Grand Duke's with the addition of a gold label on the shield for differencing. In the greater arms, the supporters also do not carry flags.
The coat of arms of Henry V, Count of Luxembourg (1216–1281)
Henry V was the first Count of Luxembourg to adopt a primitive form of these arms. His father, Waleran III, Duke of Limburg, bore the arms, argent a lion rampant queue fourché gules armed, langued and crowned or (white field bearing a red double tailed lion with yellow claws, teeth, tongue and crown). Henry V replaced the white field by a series of white and blue stripes (burely of 10 argent and azure) to differentiate from his half-brother Henry IV, Duke of Limburg.
It is yet uncertain where the origins of this burely of 10 argent and azure are. Jean-Claude Loutsch, Luxembourg's most prominent heraldist, authored the theory that the original Luxembourg dynasties may have born a striped banner (colours unknown). Two dynasties closely related to the first Houses of Luxembourg also adopted striped coats of arms during this period. Both the Counts of Loon and Counts of Grandpré bore the arms burely of 10 or and gules (yellow and red alternating stripes). In such a case, the choice of colour of the stripes would have been determined to match the white field and red lion of Limburg.
The coat of arms of Henry VI, Count of Luxembourg (1240-1288)
In 1282, after the death of Waleran IV of Limburg, Henry VI, count of Luxembourg changed his arms by doubling the lion's tail and passing it in saltire as a claim on the duchy of Limburg. After Henry VI's death in 1288 at the Battle of Worringen, Henry VII readopted his grandfather Henry V's arms, which remained in use until the extinction of the House of Luxembourg.
Lusignan and Stratford
The Luxembourg Coat of Arms bears a striking similarity to both the arms of Lusignan and of Stratford. The relationship is unknown, if indeed any exists at all although the link between the Lusignan and Luxembourg coat-of-arms is provided in 'Le Roman de Mélusine' by Couldrette whereby a descendant of the legendary founder and faerie queen of Lusignan adopts the burely of 10 argent and azure, adding the lion rampant due to his similarly-shaped birthmark. Historians have generated various theories as to the connection between the houses and the arms, none conclusive.
- Mémorial A, number 114, of 14 September 2001
- Arrêté grand-ducal du 23 février 2001 fixant les petites et les moyennes armoiries de Son Altesse Royale le Grand-Duc
- Arrêté grand-ducal du 23 juin 2001 fixant les grandes armoiries de Son Altesse Royale le Grand-Duc
- Arrêté grand-ducal du 31 octobre 2012 fixant les petites et les grandes armoiries de Son Altesse Royale le Grand-Duc Héritier. Mémorial A, number 236, of 9 November 2012
- Péporté, Pit. "Constructing the Middle Ages: Historiography, Collective Memory and Nation-Building in Luxembourg" pp 80-93. BRILL. (2011)
- Armorial du pays de Luxembourg, Dr. Jean-Claude Loutsch, Publications nationales du Ministère des Arts et des Sciences, Luxembourg 1974
- A propos... des armoiries de S.A.R le Grand-Duc de Luxembourg 2006 Government Brochure on the Grand Duke's coat of arms