Diocese of Durham

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Country : United Kingdom
Denomination : Anglican

Established : 1561 as an Anglican See, before it was the Catholic Diocese of Durham (Catholic)

Arms (crest) of Diocese of Durham

Official blazon

Azure, a cross Or between four lions rampant argent. Recorded in the Parliament Roll of 1512. Azure, a cross patonce Or between four lions rampant argent.


The arms were recorded at the College of Arms in 1530, but were already use dby the Catholic Bishops.

The arms appears first in the Seal of Robert Nevill, Bishop 1438-1457. The Lions might come from the Arms of Thomas Hatfield Bishop 1345-1381.
An arms with the Field Red and the Cross and Lions Silver is also said to be the Arms of St. Denys Bishop and Martyr. The Bishop of Durham alone amongst English Bishops has the right to have a Coronet about the Rim of the Mitre. This in rembrance of the Palatine authority exercised by the Bishops until 1835.

Arms of Bishops


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Literature : Image from Wills's Arms of the Bishopric. Bishop Lightfoot's Arms from J. Siebmacher’s Grosses Wappenbuch Bd 8, Die Wappen der Bistümer und Klöster.
E.E. Dorling: Heraldry of the Church a Handbook.