Quebec City Archives, Quebec, Canada

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French Royal Crest

During the Great Peace summit, the French authorities felt that they needed to present a powerful impression before all the Native Americans, both allies and former enemies. Both the Indian and French cultures knew the power and importance of rich imagery. Governor Louis-Hector de Callière presided over the Great Peace from a chair placed atop a platform. Above him was a wooden carved and richly painted French Royal Crest, symbolic of his connection to the greater power of France. The crest or coat of arms is composed of a number of symbols, each carrying cultural significance. Central to it is the fleur-de-lis, first adopted in the late 12th or early 13th century to symbolize the French royal family. Its stylized, three-pointed flower design also represents the trinity, an idea central to Christianity. Topping the crest is a crown which clearly signified an extension of the power of the King of France himself.

Date: circa 1727 
Topic: Ceremonial 
Materials: Painted wood
Dimensions: H: 42 in.(107.5 cm), W: 37.5 in.(95 cm.) 
Accession #: AS/1983/0055-3

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