Three Boars Heads.

My commitment was to look at the Iconology /symbolic relationships to the arms and crests.

One of the most significant evidence of aligned kinsmen is the shield and their designs.

I cleaned up the version on the web to better show the detail.

ARMS: Argent, a fess wavy Gules between three boars' heads erased Sable.

Argent = Silver or White

Fess = The broad wavy band that sits across the center of the shield

Erased = torn off, leaving a jagged edge.

Sable = black.

Crest: A demi-savage holding in the dexter hand a scimitar all proper.


Demi = half. This term invariably relates to human or animal charges when depicted from the waist upwards.

Savage a longhaired, bearded man often depicted as being wreathed about the head and loins with foliage.

Scimitar a form of sword.

dexter hand. = right hand of the shield as held by the bearer, but the left hand side from the viewpoint of the observer.

Sanglier = wild boar



What I looked at next was how many of the Arms / Crests had 3 boars heads included:

Here is a list of the research:

1.Cochrane: Arms: Argent, a chevron gules between three boars' heads erased Azure armed and langue of the First.

" The Cochrane took as their heraldic beast a boar; the three boars' heads adorning the chief's shield were said to mark the exploit of a warrior who is reputed to have slain three wild boars then terrorizing the countryside." Descendants of Vikings? (Encyl. Of

2. Elphinstone: Arms: Quarterly: 1st grand quarter, Argent, a chevron Sable, between three boars' heads erased Gules, armed of the Field, and langued Azure ( Elphinstone);

2nd grand quarter, counter quartered; (I) Gules, a chevron within a double treasure, flory counterflory, Argent (Fleming);(II)azure, three fraises Argent(Frasier);(III) Argent, on a chief gules, three pallets OR (Keith);(IV) Or, three bars wavy Gules (Drummond):3rd grand quarter, Argent, a chevron between three otters' heads erased Gules, within a bordure of the Last(Fullerton): 4th grand quarter, Sable, on a cross Argent, square pierced of the Field, four eagles displayed of the First, in the sexter canoton an arm embowed proper, issuing out of a navel crown, the hand holding a trident of (buller).

The lands of Airth lie close to the barony of Plean in Stirlinghshire.

1235 by Alanus de Swinton, where mention is made of the de Elfinstun. Two thoughts on the history of their name:

Descendants of Flemish Knights called Helphenstein, or the name comes from Alpin's tun' - the farmstead of Alpin.(Encl. Of Clans. Pg 130).

3. Fergusson: Arms: Azure, a buckle Argent between three boars' heads couped Or. The three boars' heads that appear on most shields of this family indicate a connection with the early Scots of Dalriada, who came from Ireland across Argyll. The Argyllshire Fergussons claim descent from Fergus Mor mac Erc, a very early king of the Scots of Dalriada. (Encl.of Clans. Pg.136).

4. Gordon: Arms: Quarterly, 1st Azure, three boars' heads couped Or, armed Proper langues Gules (Gordon);

2nd, Or, three lion's heads erased Gules langued Azure (Lordship of Badenoch);3rd, Or, three crescents within a Royal Treasure Gules (Seton); 4th, Azure three fraises Argent (Fraser).

"There is also a tale which makes the first of the family the savior of a Scottish King, in this case from a wild Boar. This is said to explain the boars' heads which appear on the Gordon Arms."

(Encly. Of Clans, pg.146).

5. Lockhart: Arms: Argent, a man's heart Gules within a fetterlock Sable, on a Chief Azure three boars' heads erased of the First.

Crest: On a chapeau Gules furred Ermine a boars' head erased Argent, langued Gules. Locard was changed to Lockheart, because Sir Symon carried the key of the casket that held Robert the Bruce’s heart on the Crusades. (Encly. Of Clans. Pg. 199).

6. MacDonald of Sleat: Arms: Quarterly, 1st & 4th grand quarters counter quartered; (1) Argent, a lion rampant Gules, armed and langued Azure; (II) Or, a hand in armour, fesswise Proper, holding a cross crosslet fitchee Gules;(III) Argent, a lymphad sails furled and oars in action Sable, flagged Gules; (IV) Vert, a salmon naiant in fess Proper (MacDonald); 2nd & 3rd grand quarters, Argent, five lozenges conjoined in fess Gules and in chief three boars' heads erased at the neck Sable, muzzled Or, a canton Ermine (Bosville) (Encly of Clans. Pg. 212).

7. Nesbitt; Arms: Argent, three boars' heads erased Sable, armed Argent and Langued Gules. Crest: A boar passant Sable, armed Argent and langued Gules.

The lands of Nesbit were of the ancient denomination for, in the reign of King Edgar, son of Malcolm Canmore, in whose reign surnames came first to be hereditary, they were donated to the monks of Dunfermline to pray for the soul of his father, and for the health of his own. Feb. 1994 the Lord Lyon recognized Robert Anthony Ellis Nesbitt as chief of the name and arms of Nesbitt.(Encly. Of Clans. Pg. 290)

8. Rollo; Arms: Or, a chevron between three boars' heads erased Azure, armed Proper, langued Gules. Crest: A stag's head couped Proper. Erik Rolo was the nephew of William the Conqueror. He received his first charter of land from Robert the Brus around 1141 it’s also spelled. Rollache who obtained lands from David II near Perth in 1369.

John Rollok, secretary to David, Earl Palatine of Strathearn and brother of Robert II, received a charter from the king of the lands of Duncrub. The lands became a free barony in 1511. Rollo was one of Montrose’s lieutenants.

Lord Rollo, was married first to the sister of the Marques of Montrose and then to the sister of his rival, the Marques of Argyll. Lord Rollo, was a staunch Jacobite. (Encly. Of Clans pg. 305.)

9.     Swinton: Arms: Sable, chevron Or between three boars' heads erased Argent. Crest; a boar chained to a tree Proper. Descended from nobles prominent in the kingdom of Northumberland, which straddled the present-day boarder between England and Scotland. The name is said traditionally to have been acquired for their bravery and clearing the country of wild boar, and the family arms allude to the legend.

10. Urquhart; Arms: Or, three boars' heads erased Gules, armed Proper and langued Azure. Crest: Issuant from a crest coronet Or, a naked woman from the waist upwards Proper, brandishing in her dexter hand a sword Azure, hilted and pommelled Gules, and holding in her sinster hand a palm sapling Vert. "This tale of a noble rescue from death in a hunting accident is common throughout Celtic history, but it is offered by some as an explanation of the boars' heads." (Encly. Of Clans. Pg. 337)



11. Abercromby; Arms: Argent, a chevron Gules between three boars' heads erased Argent. Crest: a falcon rising belled Proper. (Encly. Of Clans pg. 347.)

12. Baillie; Arms: Quarterly, 1st & 4th grand quarters, Azure, nine stars of six points wavy three, three, two and one, Or (Baillie);2nd grand quarter, counter quartered, (I) & (IV), Argent a chevron Gules, between three boars' heads erased Azure, langued of the Second, on a chief wavy of the Third a sphinx couchant of the Field (Cochrane); (II) & (III), Argent, on a saltire Sable, nine lozenges of the Field (Blair); 3rd grand quarter, counter quartered, (I) & (IV), Gules, three lions rampant Argent (Ross); (II)&(III), Argent, a man's heart Gules, within a fetterlock Sable, on a chief Azure, three boars' heads erased of the Field(Lockhart). Crests: 1. A boars' head erased Proper (Baillie) w. Issuing from a navel crown Or, a dexter arm embowed vested Azure cuffed Argent, the hand holding a flagstaff Proper thereon hoisted the flag of a rear admiral of the white being Argen a cross Gules, and thereon the words " St. Domingo" in letters of gold 3. A horse trotting, Argent. Lords of the Great house of Balliol, Lords of Galloway and sometime Kings of Scots. (Encly. Of Clans. Pg. 354).

13. Galbraith; Arms: Gules, three boars' heads erased Argent muzzled Azure. Surname derived from the Gaelic for ' strange or foreign Briton." Black states that it may simply mean "the Briton's son". In Gaelic the clan were known as "Clan a 'Bhreatannaich'. There is some evidence that the Galbraiths were related to the mighty Celtic Earls of Lennox, as in one charter Alwin , Earl of Lennox, referred to Gillespie Galbraithas ' nepote nostro', our nephew. (Encl. Of Clans. Pg. 302).

14. Haliburton; Arms: Or, on a bend Azure between three boars' heads erased Sable as many lozenges of the First. Crest: A negro's hand couped at the shoulders and arm with a helmet proper. ( Encly. Of Clans. Pg. 400).

15. Hog: Arms: Argent, three boars' heads erased Aaure, armed Or. Crest: An oak tree Proper. (Encly. Of Clans. Pge. 404)

16. Nairn; Arms; Quarterly, 1st grand quarter, parted per pale Sable and Argent, on a chaplet four quatrefoils countercharged(Nairn); 2nd grand quarter, counter quartered, (I) & (IV), Or, on a fess Gules, , between three crosses pattee of the Second in chief, and a mullet Azure in base, three bezants (Mercer),(I) & (III), Argent, a chevron Sable, between three boars' heads erased Gules (Elphinstone), 3rd qrand quarter, counter quartered, (I) & (IV), paly of six, Or and Sable; (II), Or, a fess chequy Azure and Argent, (III), Azure., three mullets Argent, within a double treasure flory counterflory Or, (Atholl); 4th grand quarter, Argent, three marlets Sable, on a comble Azure, a cross Or, a franc-quartier (distinction of a military Count of the French Empire) of the Third, charged with a sword palewise of the Field, hilted and pommelled of the Fourth (Flahault). Crest: A celestial globe on a stand Proper. (Encly. Of Clans. Pg.440).

17. Trotter: Arms: Quarterly, 1st & 4th, Argent, a fess Gules between three mullets in chief Sable and a crescent in the base Azure; 2nd & 3rd, argent, a chevron between three boars' heads couped Sable. (Encly. Of clans. Pg. 464)

18. Whitelaw; Arms: Sable, achevron Or between three boars' heads couped Argent. Crest: A bee erect Proper. Motto: Skill in riches. Archibald Whitelaw was Archdeacon of St. Andrews and rose to become Secretary of State to James III. (encly., of clans. Pg.472).


References: to the Kingdom of Dalriada.

c. 500 An Irish people, the Scoti, established settlements in Kintryre and mid-Argyll. These settlements formed the basis of the Kingdom of Dalriada.

c. 563 St. columba, an Irish missionary, arrived on Iona and established a monastery there two years later. Columba strengthened Dalriada, inaugurating Aidan as king, c.574. Aidan sought to establish the independence of Dalriada.