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Nigeria Coat of Arms: Meaning, Designer And Features


Coat of arms of Nigeria which was adopted in the year 1975 has been admired by many across the world because of the uniqueness of it’s features and what they symbolized.

But it is obvious today that many Nigerians did not know what this features represent. If I ask you now, what the flowers on coat of arm represent, will you be able to give me the correct answer?

Well there is no need to feel ashamed about it but you need to know it(as a patriotic Nigerian) and that is why I put this article together.

Everything you need to know about the coat of arms and it’s feature will be provided in this article. So, let get it started!

What is Nigeria Coat of Arms?

The coat of arms is a symbol, not just a symbol but a unique symbol that stand for Nigeria unity in diversity, power and authority.

I don’t need to tell you that Nigeria is country of diverse ethnic group which was amalgamated to become one in 1914.

In the year 1975, it was officially adopted as a symbol to represent one Nigeria. Let me make this clear to you, before 1975 each region in Nigeria has their own coat of arm.

What do you think this means? As a way of bringing all Nigeria together as one, a central coat of arm was adopted.

So you now understand why the coat of arms represent unity in diversity.

Designer of the Coat of Arms of Nigeria

The various findings I made before writing this article let me know that Nigeria coat of was designed by Rev. Dr Hervis.

Though there was a controversy as regard who design the coat of arms, some people claimed it was design by the man who designed Nigeria flag while some claimed the coat of arm was designed by Bahamian clergyman Rev. Dr Hervis Bain jr.

Please disregard any publication claiming Taiwo Akinkunmi is the one that designed it.

It was designed alongside Nigeria flag and approved in the year 1971 by Queeen Elizabeth.

I guess it is the connection between them (Nigeria flag and Nigeria coat of arm) that made some people believed that they were created by the same man.


The coat of Arm is made up of several components-each symbolizing the virtue of the country.

It has a black shield, which has two white lines that formed a ‘Y’ shape and two white-colored horses stand facing each other at both sides of the black shield.

In addition, standing on the shield is a red-coloured eagle, wreath and a band around the base of the shield.

Our coat of arms has seven core features which are listed below:

  1. A black shield
  2. Two white wavy bands on the shield, which result to shape y
  3. Two horses on either sides of the shield
  4. Some flowers found at the base
  5. An eagle standing on the shield
  6. The green white and white bands upon which eagle stand
  7. The national motto on the band around the base of the shield.

These are the 7 core features you will find in the coat of arm. But what does each features represent. Let get to know what each of this features mean.

Are you ready!

Meaning of Each Features

1.) The Black Shield: The shield is arguably the most important part of it. The shield is black which signifies fertile soil for agriculture.

Nigeria is blessed with black land that is very good for agriculture and that is evident in the fact we are largest producer of cocoa in Africa and second largest producer in the world.

The black shield is telling the world that our land are fertile. Do you get that now, let move to next one!

READ MORE: These Companies Will Pay You To Work From Home Anywhere In The World

2.) Two White Wavy Bands on the Shield which form Y: The letter y was as a result of two wavy band on the shield, it symbolizes the two main rivers of Nigeria: river Benue and river Niger. The later (river Niger) is the third largest river in Africa.

These two river meet at lokoja, the capital of kiogi state. They were represented as “y” because the two river comes from different sources met at lokoja to become one (as you can see on the picture of coat of arms).

Where the two river meet is called confluence hence kogi state is usually referred to as the confluence state. Do you understand now.

3.) Two Horses on Either Sides of the Shield: The two horses on the either sides of the shield represent dignity.

This symbol is misinterpreted by many because a lot of people interpret it based on the traditional meaning.

READ MORE: The Nigeria Flag: History, Meaning And Designer

For instances traditional horses can be interpreted to mean readiness to serve the country, coupled with speed and intelligence.

The interpretation of this symbol varies from one culture or tradition to other. But you don’t need to confuse yourself, the two horses means dignity.

4.) Some Flowers at the Base: The flowers on the base is called costus spectabills that is available in all part of the country. This is refer to as national flower it symbolize the beauty of the country.

5.) An Eagle Standing on the Shield: The eagle standing on the shield symbolize strength and pride of the country.

6.) Green and White Band: The green and white bands upon which the eagle Stand symbolize the quality of agriculture in the country.

7.) The Band around the Base of the Shield: The band around the base of the shield was where the Nigeria motto had being pasted since 1978.

The Nigeria motto is” unity and faith, peace and progress” . Formally it was “peace , unity and freedom”

Final Note

The Nigeria coat of arms is accepted and admire worldwide because of its unique features and what each symbolize.

It is obvious that despite this worldly admiration many Nigerian have no knowledge of what these features mean but I’m sure With you now the story is different because with explanation given above there is no doubt you’ve know what each features mean.


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