Story: Coat of arms

Old Government Buildings: Royal coat of arms (1st of 2)

Old Government Buildings: Royal coat of arms

A carved and brightly painted version of the royal coat of arms – originally sculpted in 1910 – adorns the Old Government Buildings’ roof in Wellington. The buildings are now part of the Victoria University of Wellington law school, but were originally erected in the 1870s to house the New Zealand public service. At that time New Zealand did not have its own coat of arms and, as a colony of Britain, used the royal coat of arms instead. The French inscription in the scroll below the lion and the unicorn says ‘Dieu et mon droit’, which means ‘God and my right’.

Using this item

Te Ara - The Encyclopedia of New Zealand
Photograph by Melanie Lovell-Smith

All images & media in this story

How to cite this page:

Stephen Levine, 'Coat of arms - British and 1911 coats of arms', Te Ara - the Encyclopedia of New Zealand, (accessed 3 October 2023)

Story by Stephen Levine, published 20 Jun 2012