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The Walker name was a very popular one in England. They held influential positions and numerous titles. In the 900 years or so since family names were adopted, there have been granted to the Walker families in England over 50 coat-of-arms.

At a Walker Reunion Mrs. Juliet Harrison Walker Florance described the Walker coat-of-arms. Much of what is described here is from her research.

Coats-of-arms and shields-of-arms originated during the Crusades in the mid-12th Century. It became necessary, along with the use of improved defensive armor, for each warrior of any rank to assume and wear some personal cognizance, without which he could not have been distinguished. The device of each baron or knight would be assigned, with appropriate modifications, to their respective retainers and followers. They were emblazoned both upon the rich surcoats which the knights wore over their armour, and upon the shields. The components that make up the Coat-of-Arms are the shield, helmet, mantle, crest and motto.

In the reign of Henry III during the 13th Century the coat-of-arms became hereditary. The shape of ours implies that it was created in the 14th Century. In England a coat of arms has always been an indispensable appendage of a gentleman.

The Official Description of the Coat-of-Arms

The Encyclopedia of Heraldry by John Burke describes our Walker coat- of-arms.

Borne by George James Alexander Walker, of Norton Villa, near Kempsey, County Worcester, deputy-lieutenant for that shire; and his cousin, the Rev. Thomas Walker, Prebendary (one who receives a prebend or stipend granted out of the estate of a cathedral) of Wolverhampton and Rector of Abbotts Moreton, County Worcester, descendants of an ancient Staffordshire family. Per pale, az. and vert. on a fesse dancettee between three mural crowns or a crescent gu. between two torteaux. Crest-A lion’s gamb erect, and erased gu. charged with a mural crown or, between Two plates in pale. Motto – “In Domino Confido.”
The Shield

The Shield is the principal object whereon the emblems or charges of heraldry are depicted. The surface or space within the boundary lines of the shield is called the Field. The shield is distinguished by certain armorial colors called Tinctures (metals, colors and furs), separated by partition lines and “charged” with a variety of animals, instruments and other objects, themselves called Charges. The common patterns of charges are called Ordinaries.

The tinctures of heraldry comprise two metals and five colors. The colors used on our Walker Crest are azure (az.) and red (gu.). The metals are gold and silver. Color is never placed on color. Metal is placed on color or vise versa.

The fesse is one of the nine ordinaries and is formed by two horizontal lines drawn across the field, comprising the horizontal central third part of the field of the shield. The horizontal lines are in dancettee which are lines that have teeth or indents.

The charges are three mural crowns. A mural crown is a circular gold band masoned and the top embattled (alternating square projections and spaces on a line). This type of crown was given by Roman leaders to the man who first mounted the wall of a besieged town or city and fixed the standard belonging to the army. They are in pale because they are not only horizontal on the shield, but are perpendicular.

The Helmet or Helm

The helmet consists of the head, neck, and shoulder protections of a suit of armor. By means of its pattern and its orientation, information about the rank of the owner is known. The helm of a sovereign was full faced of gold with 6 bars. For princes and nobles the helmet was silver decorated with gold shown in profile with 5 bars. A steel helm adorned with silver showing full faced and with an opened vizor represented Barons and Knights. The Walker helm was that used for Esquires and Gentlemen showing a steel helmet in profile with the vizor closed. An Esquire is a gentleman ranking next below a Knight, formerly a Knight’s shield-bearer. These may have been eldest sons of Knights and their eldest sons, eldest sons of the younger sons of noblemen, sheriffs for life, justices of the peace, counselors of law, bachelors of divinity, law and physics, mayors of towns (by courtesy) and special military officers.

Wreath

Above the helmet is a wreath of colors, a chain-shape representing two pieces of silk twisted together in the form of a rope. The colors in the Walker wreath are the same as those in the shield, azure and gold.

The Crest

The crest is an adornment placed on the helm that identified the shield bearer during a battle in case the shield could not be seen. There can be a shield without a crest, but not a crest without a shield. The crest is most always placed on a wreath of the colors on the shield. The Walker Crest is a lion’s gamb erect, and erased or more specifically, the paw of a lion held erect within a mural crown.

Mantling

Descending from the helmet is a picturesque cascade of curling stands, and draping at each side of the shield, is the representation of a tattered garment, the surface and the lining of which, like the wreath, take the metal and tincture in the coat-of-arms. In this case it is red and silver.

Motto

The first known motto in England is stated to have been that which King Edward gave to the Knights of the Garter on the foundation of that Order about 1346. The motto, not being hereditary, may be taken, changed, varied, or relinquished when and as often as the bearer thinks fit. The Walker motto “In Domino Confido” is presented below the shield on a band or strip of cloth, draped at each end and clipped to form swallow-tails. These elements constitute the armorial achievement of esquires and gentlemen. The Walker motto means “I Trust In The Lord.”

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