I Want to Register a Name/Device (Arms)/Badge, What Do I Do?

New Submissions Procedures

Heraldic Registration Steps:

Before explaining What To Do, the first thing is to determine what you want to register, as each is handled a little differently.

The types of heraldic "registration" that can be done really break down into two categories: Names and Armory. In addition to viewing the information below, you may be more comfortable with designing and submitting your name or armory if you have worked with a herald. If you go to Kingdom (and some Principality) events, there is usually a consultation table. The table has heralds who are experienced in these areas who can help you out. You can also work with your local branch herald.


Briefly, your SCA Name is the name you will be identified by at SCA events, and awards will be granted to you under that name. While it's not required that you register a name right away, it's a good idea to find at least a "given" name ("first name") that you can live with fairly early on. Once people become accustomed to using a certain name for you - even a "temporary" name - it will be hard to get them to change.

A Misconception: It is a fairly common misconception that if you are a paid member, you have registered your name. This is not the case. The SCA Registrar will put any name you write on your membership form on your membership card. The Heralds have a reciprocal arrangement with the SCA Registrar's office: We don't accept membership applications and fees; they don't register people's names and armory. This works out well for the offices, but sometimes confuses new members.

There is a lot of information on researching a proper name at this web page, which really is a menu of links to other places:

       Name Research


The SCA uses two kinds of armory. The first is a device, which can also be considered a "Coat of Arms"; second is what is called a badge. The difference is based on usage -- a device is used to represent you (on a banner, your shield, etc.); and a personal badge is used to identify things that belong to you, or relationships (such as a "household" badge, used by members of a household to show this connection). Some badges are similar in appearance to devices, but some take advantage of special rules for badges, and are simpler than devices.

Note: You must register a name with the College of Heralds to register armory. The College of Arms' filing system is based on SCA Names, not real-world names. If you have a name already registered (not with the SCA Corporate office on your membership form, but with the College of Heralds), then you are set. If you are submitting your armory without a name, it will be returned.

There are a lot of rules and conventions about armory. You can find what you need to know at this page:

       Armory Research

West Kingdom Heralds Consultation Mailing List

You can contact heralds who are interested in helping with your name/armory research, by using this mailing list ...

This is a Yahoo mailing list, details can be found at: http://groups.yahoo.com/group/wkheralds_consults.

You can subscribe/sign-up to the mailing list by sending a message to: wkheralds_consults-subscribe@yahoogroups.com.

To post a message to the list, send the message to: wkheralds_consults@yahoogroups.com with a subject that makes sense for what you're trying to say.

If you need to unsubscribe, send an email message to: wkheralds_consults-unsubscribe@yahoogroups.com.

OK, I've Done the Research, Now What?

Once you have decided on a name and/or a device (or badge) that you would like to use, you need to register it with the College of Arms. This registration includes SCA-wide protection (meaning that no one else in the SCA can register exactly the same name or armory).

Print the Appropriate Forms
To register, you will need a current copy of the forms. The forms are available by clicking on the following links, and then printing the forms that appear. (The forms are not interactive -- you cannot submit items on-line -- once you fill them out you will have to print them and submit them to the College of Heralds for processing -- see instructions below.)

These are the current forms in use by the West Kingdom College of Heralds (November, 2014).

The Laurel Office has just given us these NEW forms (November 9, 2014) -- these are the correct forms.

IMPORTANT: These forms are the new forms, provided by Laurel. They supercede all previous forms. Heralds -- please get rid of (burn, shred, whatever) any copies of the old forms you may have. The Laurel Sovereign of Arms has not given a cut-off date yet, but expect that at some point in the near future the older forms will not be used. These are "Laurel v. 3.0" forms.

We are working on newer and up-to-date instructions for these forms. If you have any questions about filling them out, please contact your local herald, or one of the senior heralds ...

IMPORTANT: Please open these forms in Adobe Acrobat Reader -- if your browser has a PDF viewer, some of the printing options will be incorrect ... if necessary, save to your computer and open in Adobe Acrobat Reader that way.

Fill In Forms: These forms are set to be "Fill In Forms", meaning that when you view them in Acrobat Reader, you can fill in everything except the pictures before printing them. This is meant to help, particularly with those whose handwriting may be hard to read. Note that you can print these without filling them in, but you will want to hand-write the information very clearly.

NOTE: The Firefox browser does not allow for "filling in forms" in the browser, and you will see this text in a small window at the top of the screen when you open one of the forms below:

On the right is a button you can click:

In the window that appears, click the option shown:

Once the form opens, you may need to click the "Sign" button (see image below) to fill in the fields:

Name Form A
Form last updated: November 9, 2014
Required Number of Copies of Form: 1
See Note about printing for the "Device" form below. You should make sure the Print Scaling is set to "None".

Branch Name Form A
Form last updated: November 9, 2014
Required Number of Copies of Form: 1
See Note about printing for the "Device" form below. You should make sure the Print Scaling is set to "None".

Device Form A
Form last updated: November 9, 2014
Required Number of Copies of Form:

IMPORTANT NOTE: This form is intended for use with 8.5 x 11" standard laser or inkjet printer settings; any other printer configuration may alter your results, so please check your printout and any subsequent copies for shrinkage. When printed the heater (shield) shape should be 5" (12.7 cm) wide and 6" (15.2 cm) tall. When the Print dialog appears from Acrobat Reader (press Ctrl+P, or click the Print button, etc.), make sure that "Page Sizing & Handling" is set to "Actual size". The reason this information is displayed in the screen shots below is that the default setting for Acrobat often gives the incorrect setting as shown below. So here you are shown the incorrect setting AND the correct setting for the "Page Scaling" option. Adjust or tinker at your own risk. See screen shots for Adobe Acrobat printing dialog:

Incorrect Setting (below)

Correct Setting (below)

Badge Form A
Form last updated: November 9, 2014
Required Number of Copies of Form:

IMPORTANT NOTE: This form is intended for use with 8.5 x 11" standard laser or inkjet printer settings; any other printer configuration may alter your results, so please check your printout and any subsequent copies for shrinkage. When printed the square shape should be 4.5" (11.4 cm) wide. When the Print dialog appears from Acrobat Reader (press Ctrl+P, or click the Print button, etc.), make sure that "Page Sizing & Handling" is set to "Actual size". Please see screen shots for Adobe Acrobat printing dialog above. Adjust or tinker at your own risk.

Once you have printed out the forms, you should fill in any information that still needs to be included and sign them. We are in the process of revising the article on "How To Fill Out The Forms". Much of the information there is still relevant, but DO NOT SEND IN THE FEES STATED IN THAT ARTICLE -- use the fees specified below.

Note: If for some reason you cannot print these forms, or cannot get them to print at the correct size, you should contact your local herald who should have copies available, or contact the Kingdom College, use the contact information on this page: Contact a Kingdom or Principality Herald.

Number of Copies of Forms and Documentation Required
When the forms are filled out, you need to have the following number of copies of each form:

     Name (or Branch Name): 1
     Device: 1 colored and 1 black and white line drawing
     Badge: 1 colored and 1 black and white line drawing

If you do not submit the proper number of forms, it is possible that the submission will be returned to you ... include copies of any documentation you may have (see below).

The device and badge forms should be colored. The best procedure is to draw up one form, fill in all the blanks, and photocopy it. Then color one copy to submit to the heralds. Note that when coloring you should use bold colors, not pastels, and you should not use crayon or color pencils. If you use non-standard or muted colors, the College of Arms may not be sure that you understand what you are proposing to register. (Yes, we know you included a written blazon, but the SCA convention is that the PICTURE takes precedence over the written description.) If there is doubt, your armory will be returned for re-coloring. It is not registered and is not protected while going through this process.

You should keep a copy of the line drawing to help you use your armory once it is registered.

IMPORTANT: Anyone who is bringing or sending a walk-in submission should contact Matins in advance, see details below under Submission Procedures.

If you are submitting documentation -- particularly important for Name submissions: please note that any websites that are cited as documentation require one printed copy of the pages used, as websites change, and by the time the Laurel Sovereign of Arms and staff get to your submission, the website may no longer exist, or the information may have been moved. When citing a book, it is considered to be good form to include not only the page or pages that are pertinant to the actual name you are documenting, but also the cover page which shows the title of the book, author, and publisher. One copy of each page of the documentation must be included with the submission. This includes printouts of pages from websites, since websites are often rather transitory -- they move or in some cases just go away. If you cite a website, there must be two copies of a printout of the website page(s) that document your name. Note: articles from the Laurel Sovereign of Arms website do NOT require copies, per the cover letter of the Laurel LoAR (Letter of Acceptances and Returns) from April, 2005: "... the name of the article, its author, the URL and a summary of the appropriate supporting documentation is sufficient for articles at www.sca.org/heraldry."

Submission Fees
Once the forms are completed, you need to write a check, or get a money order, for $6 per item (a Name submission is one item [New Name or Name Change], and a Device submission is a second item [New Device or Device Change]. If you submit a name and a device at one time, the total fee is $10, rather than $12. If you submit a name, device and badge, it's $16 -- $10 for name/device + $6 for the badge).

Branch Name and/or Arms
There is special paperwork that must be included with a Branch's Name and/or Armory submission, whether this is a new Name and/or Arms or a change in them. This paperwork includes a petition signed by the members of the populace of the local branch. You should photocopy this so that you submit three copies to the Heralds, and keep one for your own records.

Submission Procedures (November 21, 2014)
The bi-monthly meetings start at 11:00AM on Sunday (except the roadshow meeting at 12th Night, which may have a different start time). They will be held at the home of Green Crown Herald (Krysta of Starfall – 564 Broadmoor Blvd., San Leandro, CA 94577). The following requirements are being instituted to make submissions easier to process and respond to in a timely fashion.  They will be in place at least until a new Matins Herald is found. Please note that there are separate requirements for hard copy and electronic copy, and that ALL* submissions require that hard copy forms are received before they will be processed.

NAME REGISTRATION: All NAME submissions (new or re-submission)  must be received by the Matins office a minimum of 10 full days (two Wednesdays, by midnight) before the Sunday of the meeting. In this case, "received" means either the hard copy (form and documentation) is in the hands of Green Crown (via U.S. mail to: Matins Office, c/o Scott Residence, 564 Broadmoor Blvd., San Leandro, CA 94577; or via personal delivery) or by EMAIL (matins@heralds.westkingdom.org). If you email your submission, please scan your forms and any documentation to a JPEG (*.jpg) file at 300dpi. Hard copy (only the form is needed if you emailed your documentation) and payment for emailed submissions must be in the hands of Green Crown three full days before the Sunday of the meeting or may be walked in (please arrive by 10:30AM).

ARMORY REGISTRATION: If your submission is a NEW badge or device only (ie. your name is already registered or in process),  we need to know three full days in advance of the meeting (i.e. the previous Wednesday) so that your file can be retrieved and brought to the meeting.  We would appreciate it if the forms are sent via email (300 dpi .jpg files, please). If you send your forms via email, hard copy and payment may be walked in (please arrive by 10:30AM). If you are mailing your forms through U.S Mail, the hardcopy and payment need to be received three full days in advance of the meeting (i.e. the previous Wednesday).

WALK-IN POLICY: The hard copy for new NAME-only, or new NAME and ARMORY, submissions may be walked in AT the meetings as long as it arrives with payment by 10:30AM AND the forms and documentation for the NAME were received by email in a timely manner (see above - two Wednesdays, by midnight). We will consider full walk-in submissions (no email) if and only if there is time at the meeting; if not, the submission will be considered at the next regular meeting.

* RESUBMISSION to KINGDOM or LAUREL: Please contact Green Crown via email (matins@heralds.westkingdom.org) for further guidance if you are resubmitting because your name or armory was RETURNED and you have already paid. Please put "RESUB- <name>" in the subject of the email (where <name> is the name the submission is under, which MAY be the name that was returned).

Alternate email: If you are getting transmission errors from attempts to email matins@heralds.westkingdom.org, please send your documents to Matins.WestKingdom@gmail.com.

Fees for Submissions by Check or Money Order (please do not send cash) should be made out to: West Kingdom College of Heralds.

Submissions Page Main Herald's Page

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