The Heraldry Society

The Heraldry Society is a British organization that is devoted to studying and promoting heraldry and related subjects. In 1947, a twenty-year-old John Brooke-Little founded the Society of Heraldic Antiquaries. This name was changed to The Heraldry Society in 1950.[1] It was incorporated in 1956 and is now a registered educational charity, with the registered charity number 241456.[2]

The principal object of the society is to extend interest in and knowledge of heraldry, genealogy, precedence, and related disciplines. For fifty years, Brooke-Little served as the chairman of The Heraldry Society. In 1997, as Brooke-Little was ending his career as an officer of arms, he changed roles in the society to become its president. He served in this role until his death in February 2006.

In addition to being chairman and president of the society, Brooke-Little served as the Honorary Editor of the society's scholarly journal, The Coat of Arms. From the first publication of the journal until the middle of 1965, his mother, Constance Egan, served as the managing editor of The Coat of Arms, though Brooke-Little always had a guiding influence on the publication. It was not until 2005 that Brooke-Little finally handed complete control of the journal to two young officers of arms, Peter O'Donoghue (then Bluemantle Pursuivant) and Clive Cheesman (then Rouge Dragon Pursuivant).[3]

Although based in London, the society has an international membership. In December 2006, the Patron of the society, His Grace The Most Noble The 18th Duke of Norfolk, became President of the society, leaving the post of Patron vacant.

See also


  1. Stephen Friar, Ed. A Dictionary of Heraldry. (Harmony Books, New York: 1987).
  2. Overview of the charity on the Charity Commission website.
  3. The Coat of Arms. Third Series Volume 1, No 209: Spring 2005.

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