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About Ontario
  • Emblems and Symbols

Emblems and Symbols

The Shield of Arms
Courtesy of
the Management Board Secretariat.

The Shield of Arms
The Shield of Arms consists of three golden maple leaves, on a green background, situated below the Cross of St. George on a white background.

The Great Seal of the Province of Ontario
Courtesy of
the Management Board Secretariat.

The Great Seal of the Province of Ontario
The Great Seal was authorized by an Order-in-Council and has been used since January 1, 1870. It is added to documents that are released in the name of the Queen, including the appointment of the Executive Council and Ministers (the Cabinet). The Great Seal contains the Royal Coat of Arms in the centre, with a Crown above and the Shield of Arms below. Various borders and the words "The Seal of the Province of Ontario" surround these three items. A representation of the Great Seal can be found carved into the sandstone above the main entrance to the Legislative Buildings at Queen's Park.

The Coat of Arms
Courtesy of
the Management Board Secretariat.

The Coat of Arms
The Coat of Arms contains the shield of arms for the Province of Ontario. The shield was granted Royal Warrant by Queen Victoria in 1868. It also shows the Ontario crest and supporters, which were granted Royal Warrant by King Edward VII in 1909. The shield of arms consists of three golden maple leaves on a green background below the Cross of St. George. The cross of the shield is on a white background. The crest is a black bear standing on a gold and green wreath, with a moose and deer supporting both sides of the shield. Below the moose, the shield and the deer, there is a banner with the Latin motto Ut incepit Fidelis sic permanet, which translates to Loyal she began, loyal she remains.

The White Trillium
Courtesy of the Ministry of Natural Resources

The White Trillium
The Floral Emblem Act was passed in Ontario in 1937. It states that "the flower known botanically as the trillium grandiflorum and popularly known as the white trillium is the floral emblem of the Province of Ontario." The white trillium can be found in deciduous forests and woodlands of the province in late April and early May.

The Flag of Ontario
Courtesy of the Management Board Secretariat.

The Flag of Ontario
The Flag Act was proclaimed by the Ontario Legislature on May 21, 1965. It declared the requirements for the design of the official flag of Ontario. The Canadian Red Ensign is used with the Union Jack in the upper left hand corner and the Ontario shield of arms on the right side in the middle.

The Amethyst
Courtesy of the Ministry of Natural Resources

The Amethyst
The Mineral Emblem Act was adopted by the Ontario Legislature in 1975. It states that the amethyst is Ontario's official Mineral emblem. The amethyst is a semi-precious purple stone that can be found in the areas surrounding Bancroft, North Bay and Thunder Bay.

The Eastern White Pine
Courtesy of the Ministry of Natural Resources

The Eastern White Pine
The Eastern White Pine (Pinus strobus Linnaeus) was declared the arboreal emblem (the official tree) of Ontario by the Arboreal Emblem Act, which was given Royal Assent on May 1, 1984. The Eastern White Pine was an important source of income and trade during the pioneering days and continues to be a valuable resource for Ontario.

The Common Loon
Courtesy of the Ministry of Natural Resources

The Common Loon
On June 23, 1994, the Avian Emblem Act was proclaimed and declared the common loon (Gavia immer) as the avian emblem of Ontario. The loon is an excellent swimmer and can be found swimming or nesting on or around many of the lakes and rivers in the province.

The Official Tartan of Ontario
Courtesy of Bill Murdoch, Member of Provincial Parliament

The Official Tartan of Ontario
The Province of Ontario tartan is made up of four main different blocks containing the colours red and white with three shades of green and two shades of blue. The green shades symbolize the forests and fields of Ontario while the blue colours depict the water found in the province. The First Nations of Ontario are symbolized by the colour red and the sky over the province is depicted by the colour white. The tartan was adopted when the Tartan Act, introduced by Bill Murdoch, MPP for Bruce-Grey-Owen Sound, received Royal Assent on June 23, 2000.

The Franco-Ontarian Flag
Courtesy of the Office of Francophone Affairs

The Franco-Ontarian Flag
The Franco-Ontarian Emblem Act, 2001 received Royal Assent on June 29, 2001, thus recognizing the flag as the emblem of the French-speaking community in Ontario. The two colours represent the diversity of Ontario's climate; green for summer and white for winter. The lily evokes the French-speaking community worldwide, whereas the trillium is the floral emblem of Ontario. For more information you can visit the Office of Francophone Affairs web site.

Did you know?

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Coat of Arms The Ontario motto shown in Latin on the banner at the bottom of the Coat of Arms is "Ut incepit Fidelis sic permanet". The English translation means "Loyal she began, loyal she remains".