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  1. #1
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    Please help identify my family coat of arms

    My families history, as it was passed down to me, goes like this....

    John Graham "1st Viscount Dundee 7th of Claverhouse" is supposedly our ancestor and our family is from Dundee, Scotland. Through my research, his relation to me is technically "6th great grandson of husband of 19th great grandmother". Not a very close relation as it turns out. Our common ancestor is my 19th great grandmother, Christine Lindsay. Sir William Graham "of Kincardine and Old Montrose" was her 2nd husband, who was John Grahams blood. So we only share a common ancestor by marriage.

    Christine's 1st husband was David Stewart "Earl of Caithness Earl Palatine of Strathearn". He was the son of Robert II Stewart "King of Scotland" who is my 20th great grandfather. Christine and David's daughter, Euphemia Stewart "Countess of Strathearn and Caithness", is my 18th great grandmother and I am directly decended from her line. Euphemia married Sir Patrick Graham "of Dundaff and Kilpont Earl of Strathearn" and that is my family and lineage thru when my 3rd great grandmother, Julia Ann Graham, married Robert Mitchell Claytor in 1817. Thus my last name is Claytor.

    My Ancestry tree is here: http://trees.ancestry.com/pt/pedigree.aspx?tid=57689101

    So, with all of that little history lesson out of the way;

    I've had passed down to me a very old wood carving of what I was always told to be our families "coat of arms". The carving its self is on a background in the shape of a shield. I was told it was the coat of arms for John Graham "1st Viscount Dundee" but I don't believe it is.

    Bottom line and the reason for this thread - I have attached a scan of a 25yr old xerox image of drawing of this carving I have. I'm also told that our family motto was "NON DEGENER DISSI-PATE" which apparently translates from Latin to English as "Not Degenerate Disperse". It's actually written down in my family records as "NON DEGENER DISSI PAGE" but I *think* that's a mis-spelling of DISSI-PATE by my father who was going by memory. I also recall "Clan of Graham" being mentioned often by my father.

    It would be fantastic to obtain a correct Tartan based on what I discover as well. This one *may* be correct considering how many Dukes, Lords, and Marquess of Montrose there are in my lineage: http://www.tartanregister.gov.uk/tar....aspx?ref=1484

    I've always wanted to know the colors everything would have been on the coat of arms, what an awesome full back tattoo (I know, a proper gentleman would never get a tattoo) it would make! My father told me those are black panthers or pumas on the sides.

    I also found this image online of Graham-Montrose and the flowers are SPOT ON for the ones in my coat of arms: http://www.heraldry.ws/gif/graham-montrose-01.gif

    I hereby beseech you kind gentleman and ladies to aid me in my quest to discover precisely whom this coat of arms was for. I have tried for years and never been able to figure it out. It also seems unique because it has 2 helms and I've been told it may be the culmination of a marriage between 2 royal families, but that's just conjecture. I also notice the apex symbol thru the 3 flowers on the corners on mine represent "protection" according to how it's used, so perhaps the Montrose family member was the wife in this marriage?

    Please, if anyone can be of assistance of any kind, you have no idea how appreciative I would forever be! This has been a mystery in my family for generations and I'm hoping with the help of the internet it can be put to rest! I am a British commonwealth citizen by birth (Anguilla, BWI) and my ultimate wish is to apply for a matriculation of arms from the Lord Lyon.

    Thank you all VERY much for taking your valuable time to read this and in advance for any replies.

    Alexander McHenry Claytor

    Last edited by anguilla1980; 25th June 14 at 11:40 PM.

  2. #2
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    I may be wrong but I have heard it said that there is no such thing as a "family" coat of arms. I believe that arms are granted to individuals and in some cases may be bequeathed to an inheritor.
    The Official [BREN]

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  4. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by TheOfficialBren View Post
    I may be wrong but I have heard it said that there is no such thing as a "family" coat of arms. I believe that arms are granted to individuals and in some cases may be bequeathed to an inheritor.
    You are technically correct I believe, hence why I mentioned I wish to apply for a matriculation of arms, IF I can figure out to whom the coat of arms was granted to and if they are a direct relation, which I also mentioned was my intent.

    If you are referring to my thread title without having read the post, then I only phrased it that way because I wished to emphasize how it had been inaccurately passed down to me in my families history, also as I mentioned in my post.

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  6. #4
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    Welcome to Xmarks!

    I don't know much at all about heraldry, but doing a google search of the mottos, it looks like your family's coat of arms is maybe related to the Scrymgeour and Wedderburn arms.

    Also, not for nothing, Robert II is also my 18th times great grandfather (if the genealogy I've found is accurate). We're far flung cousins!
    - Steve Mitchell

  7. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by S Mitchell View Post
    Welcome to Xmarks!

    I don't know much at all about heraldry, but doing a google search of the mottos, it looks like your family's coat of arms is maybe related to the Scrymgeour and Wedderburn arms.

    Also, not for nothing, Robert II is also my 18th times great grandfather (if the genealogy I've found is accurate). We're far flung cousins!
    Well hello cousin haha! I suspect 18 generations on there are many of us!

    Far as the motto, I found that too. I have no one even close to those names in my ancestry though, but hey, perhaps the coat of arms has nothing to do with anyone in my ancestry anyway, that's what I'm here to find out! However I also believe that could have been a somewhat common motto as well. We shall see.

    Alex

  8. #6
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    Hello 92GTA,

    What we are talking about here is Scottish heraldry. They have a precise and complicated system of differencing the arms for each generation. Any speculation here, would be guesswork at the very best.

    Lord Lyon is the person in the end who will make any decision. Make a copy of all your documentation (in hard copy), with the tree and send it to Lyon Clerk at -

    The Court of the Lord Lyon
    HM New Register House
    Edinburgh
    EH1 3YT

    And ask your questions. The question you want answered is "Can I get arms matriculated off these arms?"

    The current cost of a new grant is 2,336, but the cost of matriculation of a previous grant, including shield, crest and motto is 1,117.

    Be aware though that you will only get the arms (with whatever differencing), IF YOUR SURNAME IS THE SAME. I put that in capitals, because it is the most important. If your surname is different, you will not get those arms or any derivative of them. In Scotland, arms go with the name - regardless of any other circumstances.

    Their email address is -

    lyonoffice@scotland.gsi.gov.uk

    And their website is -

    http://www.lyon-court.com/lordlyon/221.185.html

    It is always better to contact them first, before getting your hopes up.

  9. The Following 3 Users say 'Aye' to Chas For This Useful Post:


  10. #7
    Join Date
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    The roses in the 1st & 4th quarters do indeed suggest a connection with the name Montrose (Graham).

    http://www.cracroftspeerage.co.uk/on...ntrose1707.htm

    John Graham (Bonnie Dundee) was best pals with my patrilinear ancestor, the Bold Pitcur, who died alongside him at Killiecrankie.

  11. #8
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    Click image for larger version. 

Name:	wedderburn.jpg 
Views:	1 
Size:	22.0 KB 
ID:	19761Click image for larger version. 

Name:	Scrymgeour.jpg 
Views:	1 
Size:	4.0 KB 
ID:	19762

    I also did a Google search of the motto, and found these. Look like the source of the quarters on your drawing. While the one is labeled, the other,the lion, is Scrymgeour.
    Last edited by duke_19_62; 26th June 14 at 05:05 AM.
    "Don't give up what you want most for what you want now."
    Just my 2 worth.

  12. #9
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    It would appear that the arms are those of the Scrymgeour-Wedderburns, Earls of Dundee until 1668.

    "Bonnie Dundee" was created 1st Viscount Dundee in 1688, with no family connection to the previous Earls that I can see.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Clan_Wedderburn

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Earl_of_Dundee

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bonnie_Dundee

    http://www.heraldry-online.org.uk/scrymgeour.html

    *Edit* it would appear that the motto is a combination of both family's mottoes, and the supporters are silver (white) greyhounds with red collars, not panthers.
    Last edited by Calgacus; 26th June 14 at 05:43 AM.

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  14. #10
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    You guys are awesome!!!!! Thank you so much for your time on this and for the information! That's great to know and an awesome start to really figuring what truth there is that's correct in my family history!

    Alex

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