Coat of Arms

The Town of Pictou Coat-of Arms was granted by Royal Warrant April 6th in 1980 by the Court of Lord Lyon in Edinburgh, Scotland, as Nova Scotia is legally under the jurisdiction of the Kingdom of Scotland. Being granted a Coat of Arms is referred to as becoming "armigerous" or arms-bearing. The record of the Town of Pictou Armorial Bearings in the Public Register of all Arms and Bearings in Scotland reads:Pictou Coat of Arms

Videlicet: - Gules, upon a base undy Argent and Azure: an ancient one masted ship in full sail Or, its mast flagged of Scotland, the sail emblazoned of the Arms of Nova Scotia: (Argent, on a saltire Azure an Escutcheon of the Royal Arms of Scotland)and in dexter chief a mullet Or; Above the Shield is placed a coronet appropriate to a township: - Argent, embattled and of two towers all Argent port and windows Azure; and is Escrol below the same this Motto: "As Constant as the Northern Star" by demonstration of which Ensigns Armorail the said town is, amongst all Nobles and in All Places of Honour, to be taken, numbered, accounted and received as an incorporation Noble in the Nobelese of Scotland".

In 1988 the Governor General of Canada was authorized to assume Royal Prerogative of granting arms and the Canadian Heraldic Authority was founded. In May 2005 the Town of Pictou Coat-of-Arms was also registered with the Canadian Heraldic Authority and is included in the Public Register of Arms, Flags and Badges of Canada, which can be found online at

The Arms were designed by R. Mingo Sweeney, a resident of Pictou, and long-time members of the Heraldry Society of Canada, and assisted by the Heralds of the Court of the Lord Lyon, Edinburgh, Scotland. The symbolism of the Armorial Bearings of the Town of Pictou is depicted in the following summary

Arms: The classic ship refers to Pictou's heritage of the sea, from which came its original settlers and founders. The flag of Nova Scotia forms the ship's sail. From its mast flies the cross of St. Andrew, the national flag of Scotland, in recognition of Pictou as the first home of the Highland Scots who came to Nova Scotia aboard the Hector in 1773, and who established the Town as the Birthplace of New Scotland. The shield is red, denoting courage and sacrifice, and the "star of the sea" is the guide that brings the ship into a safe harbour. The arms are surmounted by a "mural crown" indicating that Pictou is an incorporated township, and is classified as "Noble" in the Noblese of Scotland.

Motto: "As constant as the northern star"