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What's in a Papal Shield? A look into the art of designing a 'Coat of Arms'

2014-03-15

These designs are much more than just designs. They're full of symbolism and they're also  essential when it comes to making a Papal shield

That's why Cardinal Andrea Cordero Lanza de  Montezemolo published a manual that makes it all easier to understand, including the language that's used when making a Pope's Coat of Arms. 

CARD. ANDREA CORDERO LANZA DI MONTEZEMOLO
Author, "Manual de Heráldica Eclesiástica”
"I decided to include some information to help out those who want to design a coat of arms, so that it's carried out correctly. With the appropriate language and techniques.” 

It's a topic he knows all too well. The Cardinal designed Benedict XVI's coat of arms. He said he  showed the Pope eight sketches, eventually he chose the one that looked just right. 

Even though Benedict XVI is a conservative, as Pope he was actually the first to alter part of the tradition. He opted for a mitre, instead of a tiara and he added the pallium. 

CARD. ANDREA CORDERO LANZA DI MONTEZEMOLO
Author, "Manual de Heráldica Eclesiástica”
"Yes, I did it. He called me and asked me to do it. So we looked into it very carefully.”

When Benedict XVI resigned, he thought it would be a good idea to change the design, for one that suited his new role as the Pope Emeritus. 

He thanked him for the gesture, but in the end he refused any alterations, keeping instead the design he had during his pontificate. 


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