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Civic heraldry of South Africa

South Africa heraldry portal


Province : Western Cape (until 1994 Cape Province)
District Municipality: Eden
Local Municipality : Knysna

Arms of Knysna

Official blazon

Arms : Quarterly: 1. Or, a horse’s head couped argent; 2. azure, a fern frond argent; 3. azure, a yellowwood tree or; 4. or, a bull elephant’s head caboshed and half turned towards the dexter proper.
Wreath and mantling: Or and azure.
Crest: The brig Knysna in full sail proper, the two mastheads flying blue pennants.
Motto: Concilio et Prudentia.


The arms were devised in 1959 and show in the first quarter a white horse's head in memory of Knysna's founder, George Rex. It is popularly believed that he was a son of George III, King of Great Britain and of Hannover, although evidence has come to light that this was not so. The arms of the Kingdom of Hannover are a white horse on a red field. The second quarter shows a fern leaf and the third a yellow-wood tree, both are indigenous plant species. The elephant in the fourth quarter symbolises that at the time elephants were still found in the area.

The crest is the brig Knysna, which was built by George Rex and which was well known in Knysna. The motto means 'with co-operation and prudence'.

Literature : Image send by Mike Oettle (, background from Arma 179-180.

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