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herald

Arms of the British South African Company

Blazon: Gules, the chief semee of Besant, the base semee of ears of wheat or; a fesse wavy argent between two bulls passant in chief and an elephant passant in base all proper; the fesse charged with three galleys sable.

Crest: A Lion guardian passant; or supporting with its dexter fore paw an ivory tusk erected proper.

Supporters: Two springboks proper.

Motto: ‘Justice, Commerce, Freedom.’

The significance is briefly as follows: The colour of the field, is the same as that in the arms of England. The basant (gold discs), in chief, refer to the gold abounding in Matabeleland, and the ears of wheat in the base to the corn which has been and can be raised there in such profusion. The oxen refer to the beasts of burden employed there and the abundance of cattle. The fesse wavy refers to the Zambesi, Limpopo and other rivers flowing through the scene of the operations of the Company. The galleys refer to the shipping which can traverse the rivers. The supporters and the crest indicate the wild animals to be found in Zambesi. The Lion also forms an allusion to the heraldic emblem of England, and the three galleys sable upon the argent field are charges borne in the arms of the second Duke of Abercorn, the first president of the Company.