Holy Island

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HOLY ISLAND (Parish Council)

District : Berwick-upon-Tweed

Arms (crest) of Holy Island

Official blazon

Arms: Barry wavy argent and azure, a pomeis ensigned with an ancient crown and charged throughout with a Celtic cross Or; on a chief also azure in a landscape a representation of the ruined Priory of Lindisfarne proper.
Crest: On a wreath Or and azure, A monk seated affrontee and habited in a saffron-coloured robe proper, behind the head a nimbus Or, and holding in the hands an open book gules, garnished gold.
Motto: Ecce ego, mitte me


The arms were granted on June 10, 1959.

In the upper part of the shield shows an image of the ruined priory on the island. The Holy Island of Lindisfarne has a recorded history from the 6th century AD; it was an important centre of Celtic Christianity under Saints Aidan of Lindisfarne, Cuthbert, Eadfrith of Lindisfarne and Eadberht of Lindisfarne. After the Viking invasions and the Norman conquest of England, a priory was re-established. The lower part of the shield shows the Crown of the Northumbrian King Saint Oswald and a Saint Cuthbert’s or Lindisfarne Cross. These are surrounded by waves of the sea.

The crest shows a Monk in a golden yellow robe and holding the Lindisfarne Gospels, created at some point in the early 8th century, the famous illuminated manuscript, is an illustrated Latin copy of the Gospels of Matthew, Mark, Luke and John. The artist was possibly Eadfrith, who later became Bishop of Lindisfarne.

The motto is from the Old Testament, Isaiah Chapter 6 Verse 8, and was chosen by Hugh Ashdown, the Bishop of Newcastle.

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Literature : Briggs, 1971