29.05.2012

The National Archives updates the Europeana Heraldica database

The heraldic database, Europeana Heraldica, operating on the website of the National Archives Service at www.arkisto.fi/heraldica has been updated. Its search functions are now available in 14 languages and it has been designed as part of Europe's digital Europeana library.

Upon expanding the database, the municipal coats of arms of Norway, Sweden and Denmark – both historical and those in official use – were added to the database. This was a cooperative effort with the respective national archives of other Nordic countries. Original pictures of the coats of arms by artists have not been added to the database yet.

The Finnish content in the heraldic database is material included in the collection of the National Archives which includes about 600 municipal coats of arms and 1,000 official seals. The oldest seal is from 1309 and the most recent from 2009. Finnish coats of arms have been linked to the National Archive Service's Digital Archive, which contains originals by artists.

The database has comprehensive search features

All coats of arms can be searched by keywords categorised in terms of heraldic concepts, including the division of the shield, the colours of the coat of arms, and other heraldic keywords. For example, the keyword "lion" returns 40 coats of arms from four countries. Coats of arms can also be searched as a text search according to the name of the possessor.

The official seal collection established in 1858 is previously less known material ranging from paper seals of the Bank of Finland to the wax seal of the Wheelwright's Guild of Turku. Seals can be searched through the administrative categorisation of the database. The 1,000 seals of the official seal collection are only a part of the historical seal material of the National Archives.


For further information, please contact:
Secretary of the heraldry committee, senior researcher John Strömberg, the National Archives, tel. +358 9 228 52 377
E-mail format: firstname.lastname@narc.fi