The College crest
Imperial College London was assigned a coat of arms on 6 June 1908 by royal warrant. The motto is ‘Scientia imperii decus et tutamen’ which can be translated as ‘Scientific knowledge, the crowning glory and the safeguard of the empire’.
The College arms are simple, confined to a shield, and display the Royal Arms together with a book representing knowledge.
The College’s coat of arms is an important part of the graphic identity of Imperial College London. It is reserved for uses which promote the heritage and history of the College, such as degree certificates, invitations to formal College events, and sports team apparel and merchandise.
Coats of arms find their origins in the twelfth century and since then have been borne as marks of identification by both individuals and corporates. Corporate bodies that bear arms must be well-established, of sound financial standing, and be leading or respected bodies in their respective fields. The organisation which bears arms can be incorporated by Act of Parliament, by Royal Charter, or under the Companies Acts.