Arms of Bari, Italy


Granted 1938; probably in use since the early 19th century

Blazon: Per saltire azure and argent a croizer palewise or

The croizer is a reference to the area’s patron saint, St. Nicholas – yes, that St. Nicholas. The arms seem to have a fairly long history, as does the province itself. It was founded as a justiciarship in 1231, and continued its administrative existence as a province/district/territory under various Italian kingdoms. I’m not completely clear on when these arms came into being, but it seems likely they remained relatively consistent throughout Bari’s history.

Arms of Orne, France


Designed around 1950

Blazon: Per fess gules two lions passant guardant in pale or armed and langued azure and of the last three fleurs-de-lis of the second within a bordure of the first charged with eight plates

I’m not entirely clear on the status of most of the Robert Louis arms, but these are explicitly unofficial. This feels slightly less lazy than some of the other departments, even though it is just a pairing of Normandy’s arms with the county of Alençon, the “capital.” Still, though, it feels like at least a nod to the region’s history and not just… throwing in some azure and wavy partitions to vaguely invoke the sea. These particular arms reflect those of Alençon under the rule of the Capetian house of Valois – hence the royal arms of France within the bordure.

Arms of L’Aquila, Italy


Granted 1927

Blazon: Azure an eagle displayed wings inverted argent, armed, crowned, and perching on three mounts in base or, langued gules

These are extremely obvious canting arms – aquila is “eagle” in both Italian and Latin. Interestingly, though, the name did not start out as an homage to the iconic imperial eagle (though it certainly ended up there). The province is named after its capital city, but the city started out as a settlement named Acquilis or Acculi (no idea what those mean). It wasn’t a big jump, linguistically, to rename the whole thing to Aquila, and later L’Aquila.

Arms of Manche, France


Designed around 1950

Blazon: Per pale wavy azure and gules two lions passant guardant in pale or armed and langued of the first

Oh man, Robert Louis really just ran out of ideas in Normandy, didn’t he? This is just the two lions of Normandy with a wavy blue half of the shield stuck over on the left to mimic the English Channel to the west. I guess when you design literally hundreds of coats of arms, they can’t all be winners.

Arms of Teramo, Italy


Granted 1938

Blazon: Gules a bend between two crosses botony argent

I am a little ticked off that there seems to be so little background on such beautiful and visually appealing arms. I did find some versions that have the bend emblazoned with the Latinized version of the name, “Teramum,” but that’s not mentioned in the 1938 decree, so I’m fairly confident in leaving it off. The decree, however, didn’t seem to feel the need to explain where the design came from. It seems like in the 1920s, the province was using per bend argent, thereon “Teramo” sable, or and gules, two crosses couped counterchanged, so the current design is probably at least partly adapted from that.

Arms of Eure, France


Designed around 1950

Blazon: Per fess gules two lions passant guardant in pale or and azure semé de lis or a bend gobony argent and gules

I’m… starting to think Robert Louis just kind of gave up with some of the Normandy departments. This is literally just the Normandy arms stuck together with an older version of the arms of Évreux, the main city. The counts of Évreux were a cadet branch of the Capetians from 1200 through 1584 – hence the arms, which are France ancien with the bend (presumably) for difference. The arms of the actual city and county of Évreux were updated in the 16th century, but I guess we’re going for an antique feel here. (The title was resurrected and granted to the house of La Tour d’Auvergne from 1605 through 1792, but by then, the arms were well-established. It currently belongs to Michel d’Orléans.)

Arms of Pescara, Italy


Granted 1928

Blazon: Per pale a river issuant from three mountains flowing into the sea in base, thereon a sailboat, all proper and vert a boar counter-passant also proper

If you’re wondering, yes, Pescara is largely hilly, rising up into mountains, and it is where the Aterno-Pescara river meets the Adriatic Sea. The first half of the shield is basically just a representation of these geographical characteristics (not super creative, but okay). The boar teases a better story, but I can’t find anything about it other than the fact that wild boar are native to the region.