Royal Crown

Scroll down the page to find out how the Royal Crown can be used in heraldic emblems.

Heraldic Royal Crown

What is the new Canadian Royal Crown?

The Canadian Royal Crown is a heraldic emblem and not a material object. Its design was approved in April 2023 by His Majesty The King on the advice of the Prime Minister of Canada. The Canadian Royal Crown is an important symbol of the sovereign’s authority, the Canadian monarchy, and the power of the state acting in the sovereign’s name. This new version shares many features with other heraldic versions of the Royal Crown, but also incorporates elements emphasizing the Canadian identity of the monarchy. Following a request by the Government of Canada, it was designed by Cathy Bursey-Sabourin, Fraser Herald and Principal Artist at the Canadian Heraldic Authority.

In what ways is it similar to the previous Royal Crown designs?

The structure of the Canadian Royal Crown, a gold rim and two intersecting arches set with pearls, is identical to that of the Tudor Crown. In addition, like other Royal Crowns, it has within it a red cap which is lined in ermine fur.

What are its distinguishing features?

The Canadian Royal Crown prominently features maple leaves, a quintessential Canadian symbol used extensively since the 19th century to represent Canada and all its citizens.

In place of the orb and cross at the top of the crown is a stylized snowflake, a reference to Canada being a northern realm. It was inspired by the Canadian Diadem, a coronet of maple leaves and snowflakes designed as a heraldic symbol in 2008 and used for honours insignia. The stylized snowflake makes a direct connection with the insignia of the Order of Canada, one of our country’s highest honours, of which The King is the sovereign.

In a nod to the importance of Canada’s landscape and the environment, the upper edge of the rim displays a line of triangular peaks and dips. Like the snowflake, these forms recall the design of the Canadian Diadem and allude to Canada’s rugged landscape, with its many mountain ranges and valleys. Instead of the jewels on the rim, there is a wavy band of blue, symbolizing the country’s many lakes and rivers, as well as its three ocean borders. This blue band, and the water it represents, emphasize the importance of the environment to Canadians, as well as Indigenous teachings that water is the lifeblood of the land.

Will existing emblems bearing the previous design of the Royal Crown need to be changed?

No, there is no requirement that depictions of existing emblems be changed. However, organizations with such emblems may choose to incorporate the new design when commissioning a revised rendition of the emblem.

Will the Arms of Canada or other state emblems need to be changed?

Changes to symbols of sovereignty such as the Arms of Canada and to official insignia will likely take place over the coming years; however, this will be a gradual process, and existing versions of the emblems will remain valid and in use until they require replacement.

Use of the Royal Crown in heraldic emblems

How will the new Canadian Royal Crown be used?

It will be used in exactly the same way as the previous depictions of the Royal Crown. It will remain a restricted emblem for the use of which special permission is needed. In general, it will be used as part of emblems of sovereignty (such as Royal Cyphers and the coats of arms of the country and the provinces), honours insignia, badges of the Canadian Armed Forces, badges of law enforcement bodies, and the heraldic emblems of entities with a significant tie to the monarchy.

What are the criteria to receive permission to use the Royal Crown?

Agencies of the federal, provincial/territorial government, and law enforcement bodies at the federal, provincial/territorial and municipal levels may seek permission for the use of the Royal Crown in their emblems.

It is rare for a private organization (such as an association, a learned society, an educational institution, etc.) to be eligible to use the Royal Crown. However, organizations with Royal designation or those that can demonstrate a close and direct connection with the Sovereign over a period of time may be considered for permission to use the Royal Crown.

For detailed questions about eligibility, please contact the chief herald of Canada at:

Chief Herald of Canada
Canadian Heraldic Authority
1 Sussex Drive
Ottawa ON K1A 0A1

Who is entitled to use the Royal Crown as an emblem?

Each new use of the Royal Crown, whether on its own or as part of another emblem, requires the permission of His Majesty The King. The granting of such permission is thus a very special honour that indicates a close association with the Sovereign.

The Canadian Armed Forces use the Royal Crown in certain rank insignia. Viceregal offices historically use it on certain objects.

Public law enforcement agencies, departments and agencies of the federal and provincial governments, and Canadian organizations (such as associations, societies, educational bodies, etc.) that have a close, direct and verifiable association with the Sovereign may seek permission to use the Royal Crown as part of their granted heraldic emblems.

The Royal Crown is also used for commemoration purposes. With the permission of His Majesty, it can be placed on various objects such as commemorative plaques, stamps, portraits and stained glass windows.

Who determines if a Royal Crown may be used?

His Majesty The King personally approves each new use of the Royal Crown. Recommendations for approval are sent to The King by the governor general, on the advice of the chief herald of Canada and the Canadian secretary to The King.

His Majesty also approves the inclusion of the Royal Crown as part of heraldic emblems granted by the chief herald of Canada (coats of arms, flags, and badges). The requests related to heraldic emblems are sent to His Majesty by the governor general on the advice of the chief herald and are accompanied by the proposed design of the emblem. For more information on the granting of heraldic emblems, see the Procedure Guide of the Canadian Heraldic Authority.

How do I submit a request for permission to use the Royal Crown, or for further information? 

In Canada, requests for authorization to include the Royal Crown are to be sent to the chief herald of Canada. The request must include a description and the history of the petitioner, the purpose of the proposed emblem and how it will be used, the reasons for the inclusion of the Royal Crown, and a draft design, if possible. Submissions must be addressed to:

Chief Herald of Canada
Canadian Heraldic Authority
1 Sussex Drive
Ottawa ON K1A 0A1