Diocese of Namibia
DIOCESE OF NAMIBIA (until 1978 Diocese of Damaraland)
Country : Namibia
Denomination : Anglican
Argent, on a cross Gules an anchor Argent; within a bordure per pale Azure and Or.
The arms were officially granted on May 20, 1983 by the South African Bureau of Heraldry (the diocese being part of the South African Anglican church).
The Cross of St George has reference to the patron saint of the Cathedral Church.
The border of blue and gold alludes to the situation of the Diocese between the blue waters of the Atlantic and the gold sands of the desert.
In the latter part of the 19th century a pastoral outreach from the Diocese of Cape Town to the residents of the then British enclave of Walvis Bay was established. After the former German colony of South West Africa came under a League of Nations Mandate and its administration was taken over by South Africa after World War I, the influx of English-speaking personnel was such as to warrant the establishment of a new Diocese. The anchor in the arms is therefore taken from the arms of the Diocese of Cape Town.
The original version of the arms (image below), on which a black anchor on the Cross of St George contravenes the heraldic colour rule that tincture should not be placed upon tincture, were used by the Diocese for about ten years from 1928-38. In 1938 the black anchore was replaced by the silver anchor, but it took until 1983 before the arms were formally granted.
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© since 1995, Heraldry of the World, Ralf Hartemink
Literature: Images and information by Mike Oettle