British Royal Family

Meghan Markle just received a coat of arms and it represents yet another break in royal tradition

Here’s everything we know about the “personal and representative” design.

By Candice Mehta-Culjak
Just days after Meghan Markle's royal wedding to Prince Harry, the newly-minted Duchess of Sussex has been given her official royal coat of arms. And it'll come as little surprise to royal watchers to learn that the design breaks with royal tradition in more ways than one.
"A Coat of Arms has been created for The Duchess of Sussex. The design of the Arms was agreed and approved by Her Majesty The Queen and Mr. Thomas Woodcock (Garter King of Arms and Senior Herald in England), who is based at the College of Arms in London," Kensington Palace announced in a statement Friday.
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Meghan, 36, is said to have "worked closely" with the College of Arms throughout the process to create something "personal and representative."
Let's break it down:
The blue background of the shield represents the Pacific Ocean off the California coast, while two golden rays across the shield are symbolic of the sunshine of Meghan's hometown of Los Angeles. The three quills, meanwhile, represent communication and the power of words.

The Arms also include a handful of golden poppies, California's state flower, and wintersweet, a flower which grows at Kensington Palace -- just a stone's throw from Meghan and Harry's quaint residence, Nottingham cottage.
The two pictured "supporters" of the shield are designed to represent the couple. In this case, the lion is meant to represent Harry and the "songbird with wings elevated as if flying," as the statement describes, is meant to represent Meghan. A Coronet has also been assigned to the former actress, comprising two crosses patée, four fleurs-de-lys and two strawberry leaves.
WATCH: Meghan Markle steps out for the first time as a fully-fledged royal. Post continues...
The traditional design is typically given to the father of the bride in the days leading up to the royal wedding, but amid the drama surrounding Meghan's father, Thomas Markle Sr., the decision was made to gift the coat of arms directly to Meghan herself -- a complete break in royal tradition.
What's more, the Arms fail to represent Meghan's side of the family. Duchess Catherine's coat of arms was designed to reflect not only the Middleton family, but also her mother Carole's maiden name (a thick gold band signifies Carole's maiden name of Goldsmith).
Duchess Kate's coat of arms was designed to reflect the Middleton family.
It was incredibly personal with three acorns taking centre stage, representing the Middleton children and the oak trees that grow near to their family home in Bucklebury, Berkshire. The Arms also included two white chevrons placed on either side of the band, designed to look like hills and mountains -- symbolising the family's love of the outdoors.
Now that Meghan has received her coat of arms, she and her new-husband will be gifted with their own "conjugal coat of arms." The new design will likely be officially unveiled in a couple years.