The Coat of Arms
The arms of the Archdiocese of Hartford are called canting arms or armes parlantes, which speak or proclaim the name of the bearer. It displays a hart (deer) crossing a ford (hart+ford = Hartford), and is analogue to the ancient arms of the City of Oxford in England which displays an ox crossing a ford in the same manner. The hart bears a Paschal banner, a symbol of Jesus Christ. The wavy silver and blue lines at the base of the shield are the heraldic convention for water and are an allusion to the Connecticut River which flows through the state. These arms were designed by Pierre de Chaignon Larose and have been used since Bishop John J. Nilan's term as seventh Ordinary of the See, 1910-1934.