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The Anecdotage of Glasgow
The Armorial Insignia of the City of Glasgow


THE armorial ensigns still used by our great commercial metropolis have been traced back in all their main features to A.D. 1325, and anyone, without graduating at the College of Heralds, might construct them out of the legends.

(1) We have the miraculous mound which elevated itself beneath the saint to let him be seen and heard; (2) The tree, said to have been in the earlier blazon a mere branch or twig, of course represents the hazel bush (or branch) with which the holy boy miraculously rekindled the fire at Cuiross. In the tree are curiously arranged,—(3) St. Mungo’s Bell; (4) The miraculous fish, whether pike or salmon, with Queen Langueth’s ring in its mouth; And (5) St. Serf’s robin-red breast.

It may be added that, looking to its founder, origin, and early history, the city motto is singularly appropriate: "LET GLASGOW FLOURISH BY THE PREACHING OF THE WORD."

The popular rhyme on the city arms, so well known to, and often repeated by, the youthful citizens of Glasgow, is as follows:-

"There’s the tree that never grew,
There’s the bird that never flew,
There’s the bell that never rang,
There’s the fish that never swam."

This may simply refer to the various ensigns or pictorial representations, or it may be a post Reformation ditty impugning their reality.

Glasgow Coat of Arms


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