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Incorporated into : 1975 Midlothian District Council (1996 Midlothian Area Council)

Arms (crest) of Dalkeith

Official blazon

Quarterly: 1st, Or, on a chief Sable, three escallops of the field; 2nd, Argent, three piles Gules, on a chief of the Last, three mullets of the First; 3rd, Or, on a bend Azure, a mullet of six points between two crescents of the field; 4th, Vert, a castle of two towers Or, masoned Sable, port and windows Gules, in chief two open crowns Or.

Above the Shield is set a coronet suitable to a Burgh, and on a Com­partment below the Shield with this Motto "Olim Custodes Semper Defensores" are set for Supporters two men in complete armour each holding in his exterior hand a halbert Proper.


The arms were granted on February 28, 1930.

Dalkeith was created a Burgh of Barony in favour of Sir James Douglas, 1 st Lord Dalkeith, in 1401, and was raised in 1540 to a Burgh of Regality in favour of Robert Douglas of Loch Leven.

The arms are related to the device on the Burgh seal. The first three quarters recall the three famous families which have been so closely connected with Dalkeith, and show the arms of Graham, Douglas (represented by the arms of Douglas of Dalkeith and Lochleven as conjoined by the Earls of Morton, but with three stars in chief instead of two) and Scott; on the seal Douglas had been wrongly represented by the more familiar Douglas arms showing the crowned heart below a chief with three stars.
The 4th quarter is for the Burgh itself; it shows a castle to recall the old Castle of Dalkeith and the later Dalkeith Palace, built in the eighteenth century by Anne, Duchess of Buccleuch and Moo­mouth.

The two crowns above, the supporters and the motto are in reference to the occasion in 1637-38 when the Scottish Privy Council removed from Linlithgow to Dalkeith, taking the Scottish Regalia with them for safety.

The Latin motto means "Once the keepers, always the defenders" and comes from the old seal.

seal of Dalkeith

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

The arms as used on a JaJa postcard +/- 1905

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Literature : Porteous, 1906; Urquhart, 1974