Leabhar  Luasaigh
Chapter 7: A MISCELLANY cont'd

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It was noted earlier in this paper, that the Norman name Lucy is taken from the town of Lucé, and was carried to England at the time of (or very soon after) the Norman conquest of that country. The Normans also brought with them the concept of Heraldry.


The award a Coat of Arms (or Arms of Achievement) is always documented, and includes some information about whom the Arms were originally awarded to, when this occurred, and perhaps why. Some of this information is published, and the remainder is recorded by the various authorities. 

Many Irish families have adopted Coats of Arms without any observation of the legal niceties. MacLysaght, as Chief Herald at the time, once made a passing comment about this practice; it is said that his comment has since been misinterpreted as meaning that the practice was somehow approved or permitted, but of course it is not.

Accordingly, it is often said that anyone may use and adopt Irish heraldic symbols, however, this is not strictly the case. In response to my letter, the Chief Herald of Ireland, (Genealogical Office, Dublin Castle, 2 Kildare Street, Dublin) has informed me that neither of the names Lucey or Lucy is on record in the Indexes to the Grants and Confirmation of Arms (G.O. Ms 422 and 423) nor in the Index of Registered and Unregistered Pedigrees, (G.O. 469 and 470). Therefore, the Irish Lucey "Coat of Arms" (which appears in published books and is also used by some members of the family) has neither legal standing nor protection.

There are distinctly different Arms adopted by the Celtic Lucey family and for the Norman Lucy family, though some crests and mottos are too similar for this to be pure coincidence. Mottos on even formally awarded arms may be changed at the whim of the legal bearer.

September, 1999