Corvus (heraldry)

Former County Dublin Coat of Arms

The genus Corvus, the True Crows, in heraldry (family coats of arms) may represent harshness, avarice, death or divine providence[1]. Crows and ravens are indistinguishable in use and appearance, and are depicted in heraldry with hairy feathers and is close by default.

A crow speaking will have its mouth agape or open as if it were speaking. Crows may also be called corbies, as in the canting arms of Corbet, c.1312.

The Cornish chough, is also depicted in heraldry, but is only distinguishable if proper, meaning depicted as black with red beak and feet. For canting purposes, the Cornish chough is sometimes called a beckit.[1] County Dublin in Ireland, Lisbon, the capital of Portugal as well as the city of Moss in Norway have crows in their coats-of-arms.

The Hungarian family Hunyadi also used the raven in their coats of arms. Matthias Corvinus of Hungary named his famous library after the bird (Bibliotheca Corviniana). It might have inspired the uniform and name of his mercenary army (Black Army of Hungary), and his illegitimate son, János Corvinus also wore the bird's name.

The Corbet (Corbel, Corby, Corbe) family from the Channel Islands are also names having been corrupted over time from the Latin word Corvus.

See also


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