National Arms of Dominica
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Civic heraldry of Dominica
NATIONAL ARMS OF DOMINICA
Quarterly Or and Azure, a cross counterchanged of the field; in the first a coco proper; in the second a Dominican frog proper; in the third on a base barry wavy Argent and Azure, a one-sailed vessel proper; in the fourth a banana tree proper. Supporters: Two sisserou parrots proper. Crest: On a ground proper a Lion rampant Or.
The arms were granted on July 21, 1961 and were retained after the independence.
The palm tree on a volcanic rock in the first and fourth quarter indicates the fertility of the island. The second quarter shows a typical species of frog, only found on the island. The third quarter shows a ship, a typical Caribbean sailing boat.
The crest shows the British lion. The supporters are two parrots, which are also only to be found on the island. The motto is in the local French dialect and means 'After God, the land'.
The Crown Colony of Dominica used an oval landscape badge showing a ship tied up at a quay, with a setting or rising sun in the background. This badge appeared on both the colony's seal and on its flags - the Union Jack used by the Governor, the Blue Ensign used by Government vessels and the Red Ensign used by merchant vessels.
The island was discovered by Christopher Columbus, who discovered it on 3 November, a Sunday (Latin dies dominica, "the Lord's day).
The French colonised the island in the 17th century, but in 1748 an Anglo-French agreement assigned it to the Carib Indians. The island then changed hands several times, remaining a British colony after 1805.
Dominica belonged to the Federation of the West Indies from 1958 until its dissolution in 1962.
Under the West Indies Act of 1967, Dominica assumed free association with the United Kingdom. Full independence under a republican constitution was granted on 3 November 1978.
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© since 1995, Heraldry of the World, Ralf Hartemink
Literature : Images and information taken from http://www.christian-siemer.de/wappen/amerika/barbados.htm