Tuesday, November 6, 2007

Coat of arms of Chile
The Coat of Arms of Chile dates from 1834 and was designed by the English artist Charles Wood Taylor. It is made up by a figurative background divided in two equal parts: the top one is blue and the bottom, red. A five pointed white star is in the centre of the shield. This background is supported in one side by a condor, the most significant bird of prey from the Andes, and in the other, by a huemul, the most singular and rare mammal of the Chilean territory. Both animals have in their heads the navy's golden crown, symbol of the heroic deeds of the Chilean Navy in the Pacific Ocean.
The shield is crowned by a three feathered crest; each feather bearing one colour: blue, white and red. This crest was a symbol of distinction that former Presidents of the Republic used to wear on their hats.
Underneath the shield and on the ellaborated pedestal, there is a white band with the motto: "Por la Razón o la Fuerza" ("By Right or Might").
This emblem is the last of a series of variations due to diverse circumstances and understandings.

The first shield
The first shield was established during the office of President José Miguel Carrera, in 1812. It was designed over an oval in which center was depicted a column representing the Tree of Freedom. On top of this column was a terrestrial globe; over the globe, a lance and a palm leaf crossed and over these two, a star.
Standing, on both sides of the column, was the figure of a woman and a man, both indigenous. On top of everything was written, in Latin, "Post Tenebras Lux" ("After the Darkness, Light") and at the bottom, "Aut Consilio Aut Ense" ("By Council or by Sword").
In 1817 two new shields emerged, both variations of this last one, but did not last long.

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