To distinguish Friend from Foe,
particularly in the heat of battle, followers of a particular leader would
wear - in addition to any personal Arms - a ‘Badge’ comprising, in the
main, the Crest portion of the leaders Arms. Wearers of this common
‘badge’ were therefore easily distinguished as to their allegiance.
In Scotland, this showed the Clan Chief’s Crest from his ‘Coat of Arms’,
surrounded by a Garter upon which the Chief’s Motto or War Cry was
emblazoned as shown below
See also CoA Elements
Above: BADGE of Clan MacLeod
(Harris), comprising Crest & Motto from Chief’s Arms surrounded by a
Garter and worn by followers of Chief of the clan.
Inclusion of the Motto on the Garter was a contemporary artistic practice.
Left: ARMS of MacLeod of Macleod, ancient Chief of Clan MacLeod.