Edition and a series of video stories 'Family Coats of Arms in Contemporary Latvia'

Unique edition in two parts 'Family Coats of Arms in Contemporary Latvia' (2020) about the history of family coats of arms in the territory of Latvia from the earliest times to the present days. The edition consists of the heraldic description of family coats of arms approved by the Latvian Heraldry Commission in Latvian and English; a short glossary of heraldic terms and the stories of the owners of family coats of arms about the motivation behind creating a coat of arms.

Editorial Board of the edition 'Coat of Arms in Contemporary Latvia': the author of the concept of the edition, editor and content creator Ramona Umblija; edition project manager Jekaterina Belokoņa; Latvian art historian, heraldry specialist Imants Lancmanis; historian and heraldry specialist Armands Vijups; philosopher Daina Teters; former Presidents Vaira Vīķe-Freiberga; Chairman of the National Heraldry Commission Laimonis Šēnbergs; 'Baltic International Bank' main shareholder, Latvian literature patron Valērijs Belokoņs.

The edition 'Family Coats of Arms in Contemporary Latvia' has been created with the financial support of 'Baltic International Bank', and in cooperation with the Ministry of Culture of the Republic of Latvia.

The series of video stories 'Family Coat of Arms in Contemporary Latvia' tells about Latvian families that are reflected in the edition and who have registered their coats of arms with the National Heraldry Commission. Also, the video stories include video storylines about the process of creating the edition over two years.

Sējāni family

The musical Sējāni family created their family coats of arms, thinking of the future- their children and grandchildren. The coat of arms has a special value for them, in which all the strength and symbolism of the family is set in. The four strawberries in it convey information about four branches of Sējāni family. The kokle (lute)depicted in the shield symbolizes the family’s love for music, while the bouquets of calamus depicted above the braid indicate the annual Sējāni family gathering - Midsummer night or summer solstice. Strawberry strings and flowers wrapped around a shield represent the belonging to a specific area.

Dimants Family

The coat of arms of the Dimants Family contains four diamonds – two gold and two blue diamonds – that form a sacred, geometric, ornamental composition. They symbolize the surname of the Dimants family (meaning Diamonds) as well as the four cardinal directions.
Just like the members of Dimants Family, the diamonds are also facing outwards into the wide World, at the mean time standing close, shoulder to shoulder and guarding each other’s back.
The colour blue in the coat of arms symbolizes Latgale- the land of blue lakes and their family home in Jersika parish. The silver-white colour symbolizes the white nights of Latvian Solstice. But the colour gold symbolizes the wealth of Jersika Latgalians and their rich history.

The Karlsonu-Beldimanu Family

The leitmotif of the Karlsoni family’s coat of arms includes scales. It is a continuation of the Beldimani family coat of arms and also symbolizes integrity. The second symbol in their family’s coat of arms is a ships helm, because seafaring is very close to its holder Justs Karlsons. It is significant, that the crown depicted in the coat of arms is made out of bricks, thus symbolising the everlasting need to build a stable foundation. The feeling of belonging to the family helps to keep everybody feel close even though parts of the family live in different countries of the world.

The Karlsonu-Beldimanu Family

The coat of arms of the Beldimani Family was created back in the 16th century Moldavian duchy. It depicts three elements: the scales represent integrity, the armoured hand symbolises chivalry, however the meaning of the third element – a six-ray star – has not been revealed yet. Participation in the project ‘Family Coats of Arms in Contemporary Latvia’ has encouraged them to do research and carefully work on revealing the historic secret of their family.

The Smildziņu-Rēdlihu Family

The coat of arms of the Smildziņu-Rēdlihu family carries a message to the next generations – to believe in your strength and ability to fulfil your deepest thoughts and dreams. The centre of their family coat of arms depicts a bonfire to symbolize energy, strength and endurance needed to reach goals. The bonfire is wrapped by a film tape which symbolises the professional work of its holder Jānis Rēdlihs and serves as a reminder to take a creative approach to life.

Redlihu-Smildzinu dzimta
Ozolinu dzimta

The Ozoliņi Family

The coat of arms of the Ozoliņi family was created as a gift to their father ( and the whole family) on his 70th birthday. It depicts two horses that symbolise the parents, who are ready to protect their children - symbolized by acorns. Their motto “Strength lies in the Acorns” sends a message to the next generations that the family strength depends on the children. The creation of their coat of arms incites the Ozoliņi family to appreciate their heritage, take interest in their family origins and be proud of it.

The Annual Latvian
Family gathering

Each year the Annual Latvian Family gathering brings many different families that have officially registered their family coat of arms together to collectively celebrate the rich history of Latvian families. In 2019 the event took place in the oldest park in Riga – Viesturdārzs. During this event, the guests could learn more about the creative process of the publication ‘Family Coats of Arms in Contemporary Latvia’, and celebrate the new addition to the urban environment – a park bench gifted by the participating Latvian families.

Dzimtu saiets

Meeting of the
Editorial Board (2019)

At the end of 2019, towards the end of November, the Editorial Board of the publication 'Family Coat of Arms in Contemporary Latvia' met for a ceremonial meeting. During the ceremony, the discussions on the content of books, compositional design, and other topics were held.

Meeting of the
Editorial Board (2020)

In August 2020 the last meeting of the Editorial Board of the edition 'Family Coat of Arms in Contemporary Latvia' was held. The edition was worked out for more than 2 years, and the Editorial Board is preparing to pass the edition to the printing house.