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Geiger Coat of Arms Meaning

The four main devices (symbols) in the Geiger blazon are the violin, wings, lion rampant and mortar. The three main tinctures (colors) are gules, sable and azure .

Gules, the heraldic colour red is very popular, sometimes said to represent “Military Fortitude and Magnanimity”1. It is usually abbreviated as gu and in the days before colour printing was shown in a system known as hatching by vertical lines 2. Although it may look like a French word it is normally pronounced with a hard “g” and may be derived either from the Latin gula (throat) or Arabic gule (rose).3

Hans Geiger

Hans Geiger, German physicist, 1882-1945

Sable, the deep black so often found in Heraldry is believed to named from an animal of the marten family know in the middle ages as a Sabellinœ and noted for its very black fur 4. In engravings, when colors cannot be shown it is represented as closely spaced horizontal and vertical lines, and appropriately is thus the darkest form of hatching, as this method is known 5. Although it may seem a sombre tone, and does indeed sometimes denote grief, it is more commonly said to represent Constancy 6.

The bright, strong blue color in Heraldry is known in English as azure, and similarly in other European languages – azul in Spanish, azurro in Italian and azur in French. The word has its roots in the Arabic word lazura, also the source of the name of the precious stone lapis lazuli 7. Despite this, those heralds who liked to associate colours with jewels chose instead to describe blue as Sapphire. According to Wade, the use of this colour symbolises “Loyalty and Truth” 8.

Music was as popular in the middle ages as it is today and musical instruments are frequently to be found in coats of arms 9. Sometimes these are a “play on words” such as the trumpets appearing for Trumpington 10, but sometimes just for the pleasure and ease of identification that these objects allow. The violin is an example of this. In common with most instruments, Wade believes that the symbology of these devices is “ready for the fray”. 11

Wings are frequently observed in coats of arms. Unless otherwise specified they should be shown as eagle’s wings, with a realistic appearance. 12 They can appear singly or in pairs, in which form they are very often found in the crest, which rests above the shield in a full achievement of arms. Wade, quoting Quillim, suggests that the use of the wing on the shield signifies “celerity and protection or covering”. 13

There can be no animal more clearly associated with Heraldry than the lion, majestic King of the Beasts. Originally it appeared only in one pose, erect, on one paw, with the others raised 14 but such was the popularity of this figure, and the need to distinguish arms from each other, that it soon came to be shown in an enormous range of forms 15. The lion rampant is an example of these modified form, and any family would be proud to have such a noble creature displayed on their arms. Rampant is the default attitude of the lion, raised on its hind legs, facing to the dexter and with front paws extended in a fearsome and powerful pose.

General Roy Geiger

General Roy Geiger (1885-1947)

noble geiger, walther geiger

some Geigers were nobles in the Holy Roman Empire


Origin, Meaning, Family History and Geiger Coat of Arms and Family Crest


wiki: Frinck51, SA3.0

Surname Name Meaning, Origin, and Etymology
This is a German occupational surname for a person who either played or made a violin, and came to be borne by village musicians. It derives from the Middle High German word giger, meaning violin or the word geige, meaning fiddle. The medieval German society from the 7th century through to the high middle ages had a name for a traveling musician and poet; these musicians were called minnesingers. It was also a traditional role for wealthy merchants and lords to pay for trained musicians to perform at weddings or other important events. One source claims the family was first found in Normandy, France and later became rooted in the Calvados region.

The largest population of the Geiger surname still resides in Austria, Germany, followed by Switzerland, Hungary, the United States of America and lastly Canada. The cities with the largest populations of the surname live in, Stuttgart, Munich, Mannheim, and Karslruhe.

The Geiger surname is found in Switzerland, Bavaria, and Eastern German border region with France in Alsace-Lorraine. It is particularly popular in Strasbourg. One of the earliest mentions of a Geiger in the German nobility was from Holy Roman Emperor Charles V for a coat of arms and a crest to a Hans Geiger in September of 1530. Hans Geiger had been the keeper of the treasury for the Count of Fugger. The Fugger Counts, were at one time the most powerful banking family in Europe in the 16th and 17th centuries. The had taken over the running of the banking system from the Medici's of Italy, and were loaning and investing money to every noble family in the then Holy Roman Empire. The Fugger's base of operations were located in Bavaria and specifically in Augsburg.

Spelling Variations
Common spelling variants are Geige, Geyger, Geygher, and Geigher. For the Swiss branch of this family, spelling variants include Gieger, Giger, Gyger. The name Kiger or Kyger may be a corruption of Geiger as well.

History, Genealogy, and Ancestry
Some people believe the Geiger’s were “Black Dutch”, but genealogist are unsure of the phrases meaning and believe it to be myth. Others believe it refers to people that are of Irish, Amish, Cherokee, Dutch-Indonesian, or Sephardic descent.

A one Jacob Geiger was born in 1778 and married Christina Schoner. Together they had a son named Samuel who was born in 1798. Samuel married Sarah Egolf and had two children with her prior to his death in 1854 in Berks County, Pennsylvania: Albert Egolf and John Michael. Albert was born in 1825and later married Mary Ann Hallman. He had two children: Henry Frederick (1853) and Samuel H. Henry (1855). He died in 1895.

A one Michaelis Geiger was born in 1611 in Mosbach, Germany. He married Katharina Dunte and had one daughter (at least) named Maria.  Maria was born in the same city in 1639. In 1660, she married Valentinius Muller and had numerous issue with her including: Valentine, Maria, Thomas, Kaspar, Margaretha, Michale, Andreas, Jakob, Sebastian, and Katharina.

Francis Xavier Geiger was born in 1825 in Wurrtemburg, Germany. He married Mary Magdelena Newkamp in 1853. Together they had a son named Anthony, who was born Michiahn in  1861.  Anthony married Pauline Discher in 1892 in Althone, Michigan. They left the following issue prior to his death in 1936: Edward, Benjamin, Leo F, Antoinette Marie, Rose A., Clara M., Joseph, and Arthur E.

Blazons & Genealogy Notes

1) Kempten (Bavière) De gueules à deux fasces d'argent au chef de sable ch d'un lion issant d'or Cimier un vol à l'antique l'aile de derrière de gueules à la fasce d'argent et l'aile de devant de sable à la fasce d'argent ch d'une rose de gueules Lambrequin à dextre d'argent et de gueules à senestre d'or et de sable. English: Gules, two bars argent, a chief sable charged with a lion issuing or. Crest: Two wings conjoined, the back wing gules with a bar argent and the front wing sable with a bar argent, charged with a rose gules. Mantling: to the dexter argent and gules, to the sinister or and sable.
2) Bâle D'azur à un violon posé en bande le manche en haut et un archet brochant en fasce le tout au naturel Cimier une corneille de sable Lambrequin d'argent et d'azur. English: Azure, a violin in bend, the handle upright, with a bow interwoven fesswise, all proper. Crest: a crow sable, Mantling: argent and azure.
3) Nuremberg De sable à un mortier d'apothicaire d'or posé sur un tertre de sinople Cimier le mortier. English: Sable, a mortar or placed on a mound vert. Crest: The Lord Mayor’s Cap.
4) Ulm Coupé d'argent sur sable à deux têtes et cols contournées de boeuf de l'un à l'autre Cimier une tête et col de boeuf d'argent. English: Per fess argent and sable, two oxen’s heads reversed counterchanged Crest: the head of an ox argent.
noble geiger, walther geiger

some Geigers were nobles in the Holy Roman Empire

5) Nuremberg Tranché d'or sur azur à un violon posé en bande de l'un en l'autre Cimier un buste d'homme habillé d'azur boutonné d'or coiffé d'un bonnet pointu d'azur retroussé d'or. English: Per bend or and azure, a violin in bend counterchanged. Crest: The bust of a man dressed in azure with buttons or wearing a pointed hat of azure with a rim of or.
6) (Chevaliers) - Allemagne Écartelé aux 1 et 4 d'azur à une fleur-de-lis d'or aux 2 et 3 d'argent à deux bandes de gueules acc en pointe à dextre d'une étoile d'or Casque couronné Cimier un demi-vol parti à dextre les armes du 1 et à senestre les armes du 2 Lambrequin à dextre d'or et d'azur à senestre d'argent et de gueules. English: Quarterly, 1st & 4th azure a fleur-de-lys or; 2nd & 3rd argent two bends gules, accompanied in base to the dexter an etoile or. Crowned with a helmet, crest a wing party per pale on the dexter the arms of the first quarter, on the sinister the arms of the second quarter; mantling to the dexter or and azure, to the sinister argent and gules.7) (Barons) - Strasbourg De gueules à la bande d'argent ch de trois alérions de sable et acc de deux sirènes d'argent tenant chacune un miroir du même. English: Gules, on a bend argent between two mermaids argent, each holding a mirror of the same, three eaglets sable.
8) (Edle von) - Bavière - (An., 29 mars 1774) Écartelé aux 1 et 4 d'azur au lion d'argent celui du 1 contourné aux 2 et 3 d'or à deux fasces de gueules Deux casques couronnés Cimiers 1° le lion du 1 issant entre deux proboscides d'azur Lambrequin d'argent et d'azur 2° un vol aux armes du 2 Lambrequin d'or et de sable. English: Quarterly, 1st & 4th azure a lion argent that on the first reversed; 2nd & 3rd or two bars gules; crowned with two helmets, crests first the lion of the first quarter issuing between two proboscis azure, mantling argent and azure; second a wing with the arms of the second quarter, mantling or and sable (proboscis are elephant trunks).

Emily Geiger

Emily Geiger, American Revolution heroine, 1765–1825

9) Autriche Parti au 1 de gueules à un violon d'or posé en bande le manche en haut au 2 de sable à deux chevrons de gueules l'un renversé et mouv du chef acc de deux pommes au naturel rangées en fasce la queue en bas Casque couronné Cimier un buste de jeune homme habillé de gueules tenant un badelaire d'argent garni d'or entre un vol coupé à dextre d'or sur gueules à senestre de gueules sur sable Lambrequin conformes aux émaux du vol. English: Per pale, first gules a violin or in bend the handle upwards, second sable two chevrons gules one inverted and issuing from the chief surrounded by two apples proper in fess the stems downwards. Crowned with a helmet, crest the bust of a young man dressed in gules holding a sabre argent, decorated or, between a pair of wings per fess to the dexter or and gules to the sinister gules and sable; mantling same as the wings.
10) Autriche Coupé de sable sur or à un lion de l'un en l'autre Casque couronné Cimier un lion issant d'or tenant une épée entre un vol de sable. English: Per fess sable and or, a lion counterchanged crowned with a helmet crest a lion issant or holding a sword between a pair of wings sable.
11) de Klingenberg. Autriche - (Nob. du St.-Empire, 14 juillet 1685; conf. de nob., 8 juillet 1805) D'argent à la barre de gueules ch d'une fleur-de-lis du champ posée dans le sens de la barre et acc d'une étoile d'azur en chef Cimier trois plumes d'autruche de gueules d'azur et d'argent Lambrequin d'argent et de gueules. English: Argent a bend sinister gules charged with a fleur-de-lys of the field bend sinister-wise and accompanied by an etoile azure in chief. Crest three ostrich feathers gules, azure and argent, Mantling argent and gules.

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  • 1 The Symbolisms of Heraldry, W. Cecil Wade, George Redway, London, 1898 P36
  • 2 Understanding Signs & Symbols – Heraldry, S. Oliver & G. Croton, Quantum, London, 2013, P52
  • 3 A Glossary of Terms used in British Heraldry, J.H. Parker, Oxford, 1847, P154
  • 4 A Glossary of Terms used in British Heraldry, J.H. Parker, Oxford, 1894, Entry:Sable
  • 5 Boutell’s Heraldry, J.P. Brooke-Little, Warne, (revised Edition) London 1970, P 26
  • 6 The Symbolisms of Heraldry, W. Cecil Wade, George Redway, London, 1898 P35
  • 7 A Glossary of Terms used in British Heraldry, J.H. Parker, Oxford, 1894, Entry:Azure
  • 8 The Symbolisms of Heraldry, W. Cecil Wade, George Redway, London, 1898 P36
  • 9 A Complete Guide to Heraldry, A.C. Fox-Davies, Bonanza (re-print of 1909 Edition), New York, 1978, P292
  • 10 Boutell’s Heraldry, J.P. Brooke-Little, Warne, (revised Edition) London 1970, P 100
  • 11 The Symbolisms of Heraldry, W. Cecil Wade, George Redway, London, 1898 P109
  • 12 A Glossary of Terms used in British Heraldry, J.H. Parker, Oxford, 1894, Entry:Wing
  • 13 The Symbolisms of Heraldry, W. Cecil Wade, George Redway, London, 1898 P73
  • 14 Boutell’s Heraldry, J.P. Brooke-Little, Warne, (revised Edition) London 1970, P 64
  • 15 Understanding Signs & Symbols – Heraldry, S. Oliver & G. Croton, Quantum, London, 2013, P136-141