The phrase below the
image is a heraldic nicety that Lord Lyon prefers to see when
displaying the Clan crest in graphic form . An Ceann Cirean Cinnidh
is Gaelic and roughly translated means that "the crest shown is for
the (head) Chief of the Clan". This addition makes it clear that it
is NOT for the Chief but for a member of the Clan. The torse, the
bar below the crest when it appears is always of 6 parts alternating
in colour with the first colour always being the main metal colour
in the Arms of the Chief and the second colour the next major colour.
Mottos are in four languages. French because it is the founding
language of heraldry, Latin the language of scholars, Gaelic the
vernacular of the people and English the language of subjugation!!
Ha! Surprisingly, mottos are rarely in Gaelic. All crest face to the
left from the point of view of the viewer. The is referred to as the
dexter. Crests that face to the right are a symbol of being a
bastard... a mistake you don't want to make.
Clan crests are not
static but can change as the Chief changes. It is his/her
prerogative to change the crest in co ordination with Lord Lyon
Master of Bearings and Arms. The new crest does not make the old
crest wrong, it just makes it a crest from the past. Example shown
Mac Intyre. Old with the snowball.. a very colourful story! New
current crest to the right Mac Intyre of Glenoe