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State Symbols of the US
 State Symbols, Emblems, and Mascots
New York Symbols
New York Greeting: This montage depicts three of the state's best-known attractions: the Manhattan skyline, the Statue of Liberty and Niagara Falls.

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New York State Arms

Arms of New York State

Arms of New York State

Adopted in 1778.

The coat of arms of the State of New York was formally adopted in 1778, and appears as a component of the State's flag and seal..

The coat of arms of the state flag was adopted in 1778 and the present flag is a modern version of a Revolutionary War flag. The original is at the Albany Institute of History & Art.

The legislature changed the field of the flag from buff to blue by a law enacted on April 2, 1901.

Arms of New York State

The shield displays a mast ship and a sloop on the Hudson River river (symbols of inland and foreign commerce), bordered by a grassy shore and a mountain range in the background with the sun rising behind it. The unheraldic nature of the Hudson River landscape reveals the modern origin of the design. Liberty and Justice stand on either side, under an American eagle.

The shield has two supporters:

  • Left: Liberty, with the Revolutionary imagery of a Phrygian cap raised on a pole. Her left foot treads upon a crown that represents freedom from the British monarchy that once ruled what is now New York as a colony. This cap was adopted by French revolutionists as a symbol of liberty, especially in the US before 1800.
  • Right: Justice, wearing a blindfold (representing impartiality) and holding scales (representing fairness) and a sword. These symbols represent the impartiality and fairness required for the assignment of a merited reward or punishment.

A banner below the shield shows the motto Excelsior, a Latin word meaning "higher", "superior", "lordly", commonly translated as "Ever Upward."

The shield is surmounted by a crest consisting of an eagle surmounting a world globe.

The flag of the State of New York is the coat of arms on a solid blue background. The state seal of New York is the coat of arms surrounded by the words "The Great Seal of the State of New York."

Blazon

The official blazon for the coat of arms is:

Charge. Azure, in a landscape, the sun in fess, rising in splendor or, behind a range of three mountains, the middle one the highest; in base a ship and sloop under sail, passing and about to meet on a river, bordered below by a grassy shore fringed with shrubs, all proper.

Crest. On a wreath azure and or, an American eagle proper, rising to the dexter from a two-thirds of a globe terrestrial, showing the north Atlantic ocean with outlines of its shores.

Supporters. On a quasi compartment formed by the extension of the scroll.

Dexter. The figure of Liberty proper, her hair disheveled and decorated with pearls, vested azure, sandaled gules, about the waist a cincture or, fringed gules, a mantle of the last depending from the shoulders behind to the feet, in the dexter hand a staff ensigned with a Phrygian cap or, the sinister arm embowed, the hand supporting the shield at the dexter chief point, a royal crown by her sinister foot dejected.

Sinister. The figure of Justice proper, her hair disheveled and decorated with pearls, vested or, about the waist a cincture azure, fringed gules, sandaled and mantled as Liberty, bound about the eyes with a fillet proper, in the dexter hand a straight sword hilted or, erect, resting on the sinister chief point of the shield, the sinister arm embowed, holding before her her scales proper.

Motto. On a scroll below the shield argent, in sable, Excelsior.

US State Symbols
State symbols represent things that are special to a particular state.
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