The Court of the Lord Lyon King of Arms officiates over all heraldry for Scotland. Our Coat of Arms and name is recorded in Scotland as family Crichton, but the two names Creighton/Crichton are interchangeable from time immemorial. As I have shown it here, it represents the Full Achievement *, and each part is a separate honor given the family for services to the nation.


The description given in Scottish Clans & Family Encyclopedia, under Member Clans of the Standing Council of Scottish Chiefs are:



Argent, a lion rampant Azure, armed and languid Gules


A dragon (green) spouting out fire proper


God send grace


Two lions Azure, armed and crowned Or




Each word has a prescribed meaning; the final artistic representation has guidelines but is up to the artist to depict. The actual coat of arms is the shield only, going back to when his shield in battle was a Knight’s identification. The Crest was worn as a metal broachor badge oras a helmet (or hat) pin, and included the family motto if there was one.


·         Argent-the background color of the “field” of the shield-in this case silver or white. To this is added an engrailed border, also Azure blue, for Creighton.

·         A lion rampant, Azure-a blue charging lion.

·         Armed and languid Gules- displaying red talons and teeth, red tongue extended.

·         A dragon spouting out fire proper- a green dragon,  according to the UK Master of Arms.

·         God send grace- same, but always with crest.

·         Supporters- these are additions to a coat of arms, usually to commemorate specific deeds or functions that are note-worthy to a family. They are always found standing at each side of the shield, “supporting it”. To the Supporters were added other “achievements”, in our case the gold crowns.

·         Two lions Azure armed and crowned Or- two blue lions with talons and teeth displayed, wearing gold crowns.

The honor of our letting the family display the crowned lion supporters references the long-standing service of the Creighton/Crighton family to the reigning Monarchs of Scotland. They were councilors, Chamberlains, Barons, Regents and Governors of both Edinburgh City and Edinburgh Castle. The crown is the Royal Scottish crown, indicating outstanding service to the Royal House.

·         BARONIAL CORONET - A gold coronet topped with 4-silver balls, sitting on top of shield below the helmet, set on a bed of ermine. This coronet honors the past baronial status of the family.


The Creighton Badge


What about the Creighton clan and tartan?


The Creighton family is not a clan as defined by Scottish tradition, and such does not have a clan tartan. Because it is a famous chieftainship, it has the rights to wear the City of Edinburgh Tartan because of past family service. Also because of our ties to other clans, we can wear the tartans of those clans shown below. The family Crichton has been one of the primary members on the Council of Scottish Chiefs for many years. The current Chief of the family is descended from the Crichtons of Frendraught and lives at his splendid Castle of Monzie near Crieff, in central Scotland.


·         City of Edinburgh Tartan

·         Clan Mackenzie Tartan (doubly so for the J. L. Creighton line)

·         Clan McEwen Tartan

·         Clan MacKay  (Sept Magee) Tartan

·         Canadian Provincial Tartans (New Brunswick, Prince Edward Island, Nova Scotia, etc).


The City of Edinburgh Tartan

Family-wide, there are hundreds of combinations depending on your individual lineage by marriage. An example would be my brother Perley Creighton and his wife, Ruth Macdonald Creighton. Ruth, and my nieces Gail and Glenda would be entitled to wear both Creighton and Macdonald tartans. The same goes for any of you who have dual-Scot backgrounds.

By James Creighton, 2003