For each herb [clan shield, coat of arms] the blazon or verbal description of the arms is first given in authentic heraldic style, followed by a translation from the Polish description by Niesiecki. The right and left sides of a shield are identified from the standpoint of the bearer, i. e., the one holding the shield. His right would be your left and vice versa. The tinctures (colors) in heraldry are as follows: azure = blue, gules = red; sable = black; or = gold, argent = silver; vert = green. In heraldry all charges (pictures) on a shield are assumed to be facing dexter (right side) unless otherwise specified. In Polish heraldry all animals or birds are assumed to be in their natural coloring unless otherwise specified.
Arms: Gules, a cross patee concave argent, surmounted of a raven sable, holding in its beak a ring or. Whereupon is set for a crest: out of a ducal coronet three ostrich plumes proper.
There should be a Knight's cross on a red field, on the cross is a raven holding in its beak a gold ring, its head facing the right side of the shield. On the helmet are three ostrich plumes: thus Okolski decribes it, but others do not write that it is a raven on the cross, but only a bird. Bielski fol. 172, M. S. P. Kojal. The Frenchman Willibaldus, first archbishop of Gniezno, is supposed to have brought these arms with him to Poland; he ascended that seat in 966 and occupied it for four years, dying in 970, although others would include this Willibald under the arms Krucynia.
Families Using These Arms
Boguslawski, Cwiklowski, Drozdowski, Galczewski, Szczycienski, Szymanowski, Źelazo
[Addition to Niesiecki's text by the 19th-century editor, J. N. Bobrowicz.] Kuropatnicki, Malachowski and others give the following families as using these arms: Jezierzynski, Niemierza, Niemira.
Copyright © 1994 Leonard J. Suligowski. Used by permission. This article originally appeared in Rodziny, (November 1994), the journal of the Polish Genealogical Society of America.