AskDefine | Define pursuivant

User Contributed Dictionary



Middle English, from Old French pursuivant, present participle of pursuivre (‘to follow’).


  1. follower
  2. a herald of the College of Arms
  3. a Grand Lodge Officer who guards the inner door during a meeting of the Grand Lodge

Extensive Definition

A Pursuivant, or more correctly a pursuivant of arms, is a junior officer of arms. Most pursuivants are attached to official heraldic authorities, such as the College of Arms in London or the Court of the Lord Lyon in Edinburgh. In the mediaeval era, many great nobles employed their own officers of arms. Today, there still exist some private pursuivants that are not employed by a government authority. In Scotland, for example, several pursuivants of arms have been appointed by Clan Chiefs. These pursuivants of arms look after matters of heraldic and genealogical importance for clan members.
Some Masonic Grand Lodges have an office known as the Grand Pursuivant. The office is unknown at the local Masonic lodge level. It is the Grand Pursuivant's duty to announce all applicants for admission into the Grand Lodge by their names and Masonic titles; to take charge of the jewels and regalia of the Grand Lodge; to attend all communications of the Grand Lodge, and to perform such other duties as may be required by the Grand Master or presiding officer.

English Pursuivants of Arms Extraordinary

pursuivant in Spanish: Persevante
pursuivant in Hungarian: Perszevant
pursuivant in Dutch: Pursuivant
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