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A herald is an officer responsible for conducting court; helping members register names, arms and badges; and assisting with questions of protocol. All heraldic officers are members of the College of Heralds.

In technical terms, a herald is any senior heraldic officer holding a title (such as the regional or shield heralds) as appointed by the chief heraldic officer of the kingdom, the Dragon Principal Herald. A person with the rank of herald, but without any specific title is considered a Herald-at-Large. The rank of Herald Extraordinary is an honor that can be bestowed upon a herald by the Principal Herald of a Kingdom for service to the Kingdom College of Heralds or by the Laurel King of Arms for service to the Society College of Arms. A Herald Extraordinary can register their own personal heraldic title.

A junior heraldic officer is known as a pursuivant. A pursuivant serving as officer to a barony, shire or canton is known as Group Name Pursuivant (for example, Stormvale Pursuivant). Other pursuivants may have unique titles, such as Opinicus Pursuivant. A pursuivant in any other category is known as a Pursuivant-at-Large.

In general parlance, the term herald may refer to any heraldic officer, despite the technical distinctions noted above. It is not uncommon to hear heralds referred to as one of three types:

  • field heralds - Individuals who make vocal announcements at events. In the Middle Kingdom field heralds traditionally start announcements with a cry of Oyez! to get the attention of the populace.
  • book heralds - Individuals specifically involved in only the research and submission portions of heraldic arts and who provide no announcement services to the populace.
  • sign heralds - Individuals who provide sign language interpretation of event happenings (typically courts) for the deaf and hard of hearing.

Titled Heralds and Pursuivants of the Middle Kingdom

Regional Heralds

Shield Heralds

Additional Titled Heralds and Pursuivants

See Also

See also heraldic title and heraldic tabard.

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