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CHALMERS - from Nisbet Vol I


"CHALMERS of that Ilk" by Alexander Nisbet

This quotation was transcribed from "A System of Heraldry, Speculative and Practical Vol. I" by Alexander Nisbet Gent., Edinburgh 1816


"The surname of CHALMERS with us, the principal family it seems, was designed of that Ilk, which had for arms, argent, a demi-lion rampant sable, naisant of a fesse gules, with a fleur-de-lys in base of the last, as by our old books of blazon, and our new Register gives to Monsieur Chalmers, Baron of Tartas, in France, since the year 1661, as descended of the family of Chalmers of that Ilk, argent, a demi-lion rampant sable, issuing out of a fesse and in base, a fleur-de-lys all within a bordure gules, crest a falcon belled proper; with the motto "Non praeda sed victoria."

And in the same register

Thomas Chalmers, lawful son to James Chalmers, Advocate, lineally descended of a second brother of Chalmers of Ashentrees, who was a son of the family of Chalmers of that Ilk, argent a lion rampant sable naissant out of a fesse gules and in base a fleur-de-lys of the third, all within a borudre of the second, crest a hand holding a pair of scales proper with the motto "Lux mihi laurus." Lyon Register.

Some will have the name CHALMERS to be from the ancient designation de Camera or from the Clan Cameron, who carried or, two bars gules as by our old books. Sir George Mackenzie, in his manuscripts of Scots Familar, says that one of the name de Camera, went to France and put his name Cameron in a latin dress Camerarius, and in French de la Chambre, and upon his return to Scotland was called Chalmers, which tradition, says he, seems to be confirmed by the fleur-de-lyse in base.

There was an ancient family of this name designated Cults in the shire of Aberdeen as in a genealogical tree of that family, illuminated and approved of by Sir Charles Erskine, Lyon King of Arms, whereunto his subscriptions of two heralds, which begins with Alexander Chalmers of Cults, who married a daugter of the Earl of Errol, and carried the principal arms of Chalmers viz: argent a demi-lion sable issuing out of a fesse gules and in base a fleur-de-lys of the last which are impaled with those of his wife's; and thence, the seventh from him in lineal descent was Alexander Chalmers of Cults, with the above arms; and for crest, the head and neck of a lion sable, langued gules, with the motto Avancez impaled with the arms of his wife, a daughter of Lumsdane of Cushnie, being azure on a chevron argent between three stars or, a buckle of the first; crest, a battle-ax erected in pale, tween three stars or, a buckle of the first; crest a battle-ax erected in pale.

Their son William married Elizabeth, a daughter of Binnie-Craig; whose son was Mr. James Chalmers, Parson of Paisley; he married -- Petrie, sister to Robert Petrie of Portlethan, sometime Provost of Aberdeen, with whom he had Charles Chalmers, Writer of the Signet, and Captain of the Scots guards who carried the above arms of Chalmers as in the abovementioned genealogical tree which I have seen in the hands of Roderick Chalmers, herald-painter in Edinburgh."

Chalmers of Gaitgirth (from Vol II of Nisbet's "System of Heraldry")

Chalmers (Appendix) (from Appendix of Nisbet's "System of Heraldry")

See also the Chalmers Heraldry pages


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If you are aware of other references please contact me at [email protected]

This page was updated 05-Nov-2000   � John Chalmers 2000.