[bley-zuh n]

verb (used with object)

to set forth conspicuously or publicly; display; proclaim: The pickets blazoned their grievances on placards.
to adorn or embellish, especially brilliantly or showily.
to describe in heraldic terminology.
to depict (heraldic arms or the like) in proper form and color.


Origin of blazon

1275–1325; Middle English blaso(u)n < Anglo-French, Old French blason buckler, of obscure origin
Related formsbla·zon·er, nounbla·zon·ment, nounun·bla·zoned, adjective Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for blazon

Historical Examples of blazon

  • He could call to mind no such English blazon, nor did it seem to him that it could possibly be English.

    The Sea-Hawk

    Raphael Sabatini

  • I knelt down and tried to decipher the blazon in the moonlight.

  • You wear your blazon of honor on your shoulder; I hide mine in a slave's gown.


    Bret Harte

  • Represented in blazon as in Nos. 298, 299, and without leaves.

  • Sunbeams, or Rays, are borne in blazon, and form an early charge.

British Dictionary definitions for blazon


verb (tr)

(often foll by abroad) to proclaim loudly and publicly
heraldry to describe (heraldic arms) in proper terms
to draw and colour (heraldic arms) conventionally


heraldry a conventional description or depiction of heraldic arms
any description or recording, esp of good qualities
Derived Formsblazoner, noun

Word Origin for blazon

C13: from Old French blason coat of arms
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012

Word Origin and History for blazon

"coat of arms," late 13c., from Old French blason (12c.) "a shield, blazon," also "collar bone;" common Romanic (cf. Spanish blason, Italian blasone, Portuguese brasao, Provençal blezo, the first two said to be French loan-words); of uncertain origin. OED doubts, on grounds of sense, the connection proposed by 19c. French etymologists to Germanic words related to English blaze (n.1).


1560s, "to depict or paint (armorial bearings)," from blazon (n.) or else from French blasonner. Earlier as "to set forth decriptively" (1510s); especially "to vaunt or boast" (1530s), in this use probably from or influenced by blaze (v.2).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper