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August 29, 2017
Heraldry dates back to Ancient Greece, where warriors developed their own elaborate insignia to display on their shields in battle. This idea was a large influence on Roman culture, where coats of arms evolved to represent entire battalions, itself the foundation for both the knightly symbology and family crests of medieval England and Scotland.
The concept of heraldry is well-documented in European history, but has roots in other parts of the world. Japan is known for its kamon, or family insignias which also signify military or naval associations, though they developed independently from their western counterparts. Worldwide, their usage has evolved but remained consistent in one way or another: Believe it or not, the coat of arms is credited as the predecessor to the corporate logo! (Picture the ridiculous image of shields plastered with the Nationwide or Pepsi symbols.)
For our Heraldics socks, Ozone decided to create a trio of symbols using common motifs: the lion, cannon and armor. A lion symbolizes great courage, strength and valor, and was often restricted to the crests of nobles; only in a handful of instances was it used to represent a civic province or lowly family.
The cannons, as one might imagine, represent ties to one of the armed forces, often the navy. They cross to create a saltire, which may seem like a simple X but represents honorability; the word saltire also derives from the Old French word for stirrup, the primitive technology used by cavalier soldiers.
Finally we have armor, a complicated symbol because of its range of meanings. Depending on whether the front is open or closed, which direction the armor faces, and the number and color of helmets pictured could denote an ordinary gentleman to a wealthy landowner to a high ranking general. Paired with a saltire of axes as our design is, this crest would likely represent one of the hardworking masons of the medieval age.
Seeing any symbolism we might have missed? Let us know in the comments!
~Ben LoPiccolo - Content Creator for Ozone Design