In Sweden only those of the noble class were entitled to have coats of arms. Kings rewarded people who performed heroic deeds, made notable achievements, or held prominent positions in government by granting them a noble title and the right to use a coat of arms. These grants were documented.
Various Swedish authors have prepared heraldry books that describe coats of arms and the families that used them. They also briefly describe the family's entitlement to that coat of arms, and they may note early bearers of that coat of arms, sometimes with relationships, birth dates, and other genealogical information.
The Family History Library has collected many heraldry books. They are listed in the catalog under:
SWEDEN - HERALDRY
Some helpful books on the subject are:
- Boneauschiold, Gust. Sweriges rikes ridderskaps och adels wapenbok (Swedish Coats of Arms of Knights and Nobility). Stockholm, Sweden: Lars Salvius, 1740. (FHL film 1124575 item 1.)
- Stjernstedt, A. W. Sveriges ridderskaps och adels wapenbok (Coats of Arms of Swedish Knights and Nobility). Stockholm, Sweden: Lewertin & Sjöstedt, 1865-1879. (FHL book 948.5 D6s.)
- Dahlby, Frithiof. Svensk heraldisk uppslagsbok (Reference Book of Swedish Heraldry). Stockholm, Sweden: Bonniers, 1964. (FHL book 948.5 D6da.)
Also see the "Nobility" section of this outline.