Welcome to the Clan Donald Armorial.

The primary objective of this site is to research and record information on all Coats of Arms currently held by members of Clan Donald. 

This site separates the recorded Arms into three types:  the undifferenced Arms held by a Chief of a specific Branch of Clan Donald; the Arms of recognised Chieftains of those specific Branches; and the Arms of cadets of Clan Donald.

It has been some 30-generations since the time of Somerled. Throughout all those generations, it was important that members of the family stay attached to the Clan no matter who they were–particularly younger sons. These younger sons often formed cadet branches of the family. During the passage of time, many such branches were established.  It is our hope to identify the current incumbents of these cadet families and to display their Arms in this armorial.

An apparently unrelated armiger of a Clan Donald name is referred to as an indeterminate cadet.  In other words, any member of the Clan with personal Arms who cannot trace his or her lineage to the Chief’s line is an “indeterminate cadet.”  In this armorial, such Arms are shown under the Branch of the Clan to which that person belongs (where unknown, those Arms are shown at the end of the armorial under the rubric Undetermined Indeterminate Cadets).

A Coat of Arms belongs only to one individual person and can only be used by that person and no one else. Therefore, in order for a person to be able to use a Coat of Arms, it is necessary for that individual person to have inherited recognised Arms or to have petitioned a recognised authority to have a personal Coat of Arms granted to him or her.  Consequently, for the purposes of this armorial, we have only included Coats of Arms that meet the following standards:  

1.      Arms are granted by a recognised authority such as:

a.         Lord Lyon King of Arms, Scotland;

b.         Chief Herald of Canada;

c.         Garter Principal King of Arms, College of Arms in London; or

d.         Chief Herald of Ireland, Dublin.

2.      The Arms are held by a living person and not historical Arms that have lapsed.

3.      The Arms are not “assumed” Arms; in other words, they must be Arms granted to that particular person by a recognized granting authority. 

Given the dynamic nature of heraldry, this armorial may well be incomplete.  We welcome additions and corrections.

To the best of our knowledge, the majority of the information listed on this site is in the public domain. While every effort has been made to contact holders of Arms to seek permission to have them included in this armorial, if any armiger wishes his or her Arms removed, please contact the Chamberlain.

An Explanation of West Highland Heraldry

The Armorial