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Civic heraldry of the United Kingdom

  • Overseas possessions
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Additions: 1931 Maxwelltown
Incorporated into: 1975 Nithsdale (1996 Dumfries and Galloway)


Official blazon

Azure, semee of estoiles Or, standing on a cloud the figure of the Archangel Michael, wings expanded, brandishing in his dexter hand a sword over a dragon lying on its back in base with its tail nowed fessways all Proper, on his sinister arm an escutcheon Argent charged with a cross Gules; in dexter flank an increscent, in the sinister flank the sun in his splendour of the Second.

Above the Shield is placed a mural coronet suitable to a Royal Burgh and under the same this Motto "A Lore Burne".


The arms were officially granted on August 20, 1931.

Dumfries is a Royal Burgh of King William the Lion, dating from about 1186.

The arms are taken in almost complete detail from a Burgh seal, of which a fourteenth century impression is known and of which the matrix was discovered in 1910. St. Michael is the patron saint of the Burgh and the scene on the shield recalls the Archangel's triumph over the great red dragon (Revelation I2 :3-4).

The Scots motto is the old mustering cry of the Burgh and means "To the Lower Burn".

Arms (crest) of Dumfries

Seal of the burgh as used in the 1890s
Arms (crest) of Dumfries

The arms on a Wills's cigarette card, 1906
Arms (crest) of Dumfries

The arms as used on a JaJa postcard +/- 1905
Arms (crest) of Dumfries

The arms in the Coffee Hag albums +/- 1935

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Literature: Urquhart, 1974, 1979, 2001; top image from The Court of the Lord Lyon facebook page