According to the official website the Commonwealth Coat of Arms is the formal symbol of the Commonwealth of Australia and signifies Commonwealth authority and ownership.

It is used by Australian Government departments and agencies, statutory and non-statutory authorities, the Parliament and Commonwealth courts and tribunals.

First commonwealth Coat of Arms

King Edward VII first officially granted of a coat of arms to the Commonwealth of Australia, in a Royal Warrant on 7 May 1908. 

The first Coat of Arms was a simple shield of white and blue. On the shield was the cross of St George, with five six-pointed white stars along the cross and six small escutcheons (small shields) around the edge of the shield.  

The shield was supported by a kangaroo and an emu standing on a grassy mound and above the shield was the crest containing the seven-pointed gold star of Federation on a wreath of white and blue.  The motto ‘Advance Australia’ was inscribed at the base of the grassy mound.

The second Commonwealth Coat of Arms

King George V granted the second Commonwealth Coat of Arms in a Royal Warrant (PNG 231 KB) dated 19 September 1912, which includes a ‘blazon’, or official description of the Commonwealth Coat of Arms, so the Coat of Arms can be reproduced in any part of the world. The 1912 Coat of Arms is the official Commonwealth Coat of Arms. 

The second Commonwealth Coat of Arms was designed because the original Coat of Arms didn’t make any reference to the states. 


The centre of the shield includes symbols of Australia’s six states and the border of the shield symbolises federation. 

The shield is held up by the native Australian animals the kangaroo and the emu, which were chosen to symbolise a nation moving forward, based on the fact that neither animal can move backwards easily. 

A seven-point gold Commonwealth Star sits above the shield. Six of the star’s points represent the Australian states and the seventh point represents the territories.

A wreath of gold and blue sits under the Commonwealth Star. Gold and blue are the Commonwealth Coat of Arms’ ‘livery’, or ‘identifying’, colours. 

Australia’s floral emblem, the golden wattle, frames the shield and the kangaroo and emu and at the bottom of the shield you will see a scroll containing the word ‘Australia’. 

There are ten variations of the 1912 Arms – the colour version, four variations of the conventional Arms and five variations of the stylised Arms. 

The Commonwealth of Australia company logo was filed for trademarking on 8th January 1992 with the United States Trademarks and Patents Office. What is really interesting is that they filed this trademark for all 45 international categories including the lengthy list of US trademark categories!

List of 45 Classes

Article 6ter

Article 6ter of the Paris Convention protects the flags and emblems of states that are party to the Paris Convention, as well as the names and emblems of international intergovernmental organizations (IGOs) against unauthorized registration and use as trademarks.

The trademark consists of an emblem of the Commonwealth of Australia.Design Search Code(s):01.01.05 – Stars – one or more stars with seven or more points
03.01.02 – Lion insignia (heraldic lion)
03.09.09 – Kangaroos; Wallabies
03.15.01 – Eagles
03.15.06 – Geese; Ducks; Swans
05.15.02 – Wreaths; Laurel leaves or branches (borders or frames)
24.01.02 – Shields or crests with figurative elements contained therein or superimposed thereon
24.13.01 – Latin cross (shorter horizontal lines); Cross, Latin (shorter horizontal lines)

Lion. The lion is a very diverse symbol. Its most common traits are: majesty, strength, courage, justice, and military might. … Commonly reffered to as “the KING of the beasts,” it is a symbol of Kingly power and might, but as the lioness it is commonly related to the Great Mother and protection.

The kangaroo and emu are bearers on the Australian Coat of Arms. It has been claimed these animals were chosen to signify a country moving ‘forward’ because of a common belief that neither can move backward. Interestingly the emu wasn’t registered under the patent.

THE EAGLE: With its acute eyesight, the eagle has come to embody an all-seeing EYE. The eagle is often a solar symbol, and can be linked to all sky gods. It signifies inspiration, release from bondage, victory, longevity, speed, pride, father and royalty; it is often an emblem for powerful nations. The Roman, French, Austrian, German, and American peoples have all adopted this image as their symbol. Hence, a two-headed eagle has come to often mean the union of two nations, but it also means creative power. In psychological symbology, the eagle is viewed as “a mightily winged creature in the heavens of the mind” (Biederman, 110). Since it lives in full light of the sun, it is considered luminous and shares characteristics with air and fire. Through its detachment from earth it represents spirit and soul. Dante has called the eagle of ‘bird of God’, while Jung defines it merely as height.

LAUREL WREATH:laurel is a type of wreath — circular, made from leaves and branches — worn on the head in ancient times. The laurel is a symbol of victory that lives on in the phrase “Resting on one’s laurels.” When you rest on your laurels, you’re happy with previous successes but not doing much to continue succeeding.

LATIN CROSS: Otherwise known as a crucifix, the Latin cross is said to represent Christ’s crucifixion. Typographically, the Latin cross is a derivative of the dagger, or obelisk, used to indicate death. The cross originated as a pagan symbol in Asian and African countries and a platform for crucifixion in Ancient Rome.