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PART ONE: Shapes
Sixteen Premier League clubs have crests that prominently feature what might be commonly called a shield (although shields come in many shapes, including circles).
Aston Villa
Man City
Man United
West Brom
West Ham
Chelsea are the only club in the Premier League with a circular crest.
Crystal Palace, Swansea City and Tottenham Hotspur's logos are more free-form.

PART TWO: Components









Arsenal's crest shows a cannon. The club was formed in 1886 by workers of the Royal Arsenal in Woolwich. The arsenal, in South East London, had stored or manufactured munitions since the 17th century. The club bore the names Dial Square, Royal Arsenal and Woolwich Arsenal before settling on Arsenal in 1914.
William McGregor introduced a lion to Aston Villa's shirts in the 1870s, resembling the one found on the royal standard of his native Scotland. McGregor held various back office posts at the club and was important in its early development.

The lion is rampant (erect, forepaws raised).
Aston Villa's motto is 'Prepared'. The word is set in an Art Nouveau style that is unusually stylised when compared to the largely plain typefaces on display throughout the Premier League's crests.
Aston Villa's star represents their 1982 European Cup win.
Cardiff City's crest traditionally featured a prominent bluebird and, more recently, a small dragon. The club gained the nickname 'the Bluebirds' after The Bluebird of Happiness, a play by Maurice Maeterlinck that was performed in the city to a good reception in 1911. When the club was recoloured from blue to red in 2012 the crest was changed to one with a large dragon and tiny bluebird.
Riverside AFC was formed in 1899, changing its name to Cardiff City in 1908. The motto 'Fire and Passion' was introduced with the rebranding of the club in 2012.
Chelsea's lion is rampant regardant (facing backwards) and holding a staff. It is derived from the coat of arms of the Earl of Cadogan who served as the club's president.
Chelsea's crest features two red roses representing England.
The crest on Chelsea's white away kit for 2013-14 is all blue.
The modern Crystal Palace was founded in 1905 (a previous club of that name was formed in 1861 and dissolved in 1876).
In 1973 Crystal Palace dropped the nickname 'the Glaziers' from their badge and added an eagle. This was reportedly under the direction of manager Malcolm Allison who took inspiration from the eagle on Benfica's crest.
The club take their name from the Crystal Palace, a huge iron and glass display space built for the Great Exhibition of 1851. The club was founded in 1905 to occupy a stadium on the grounds of the palace that had hosted the FA Cup Final since 1895 (and continued to until 1914).
Crystal Palace
Everton's badge includes Prince Rupert's Tower, a small jail built in Everton in the 18th century to hold prisoners overnight. Also known as the Beacon, it first appeared on the club's crest in 1938.
Everton was founded in 1878 as St Domingo's FC by parishioners of St Domingo's Methodist Church. The club was renamed Everton the following year.
Everton replaced this crest (used since 2000) with the simplified one (far left) in the summer of 2013. The change was met with objection from fans; the removal of the wreaths and motto drawing particular criticism. The club plans to re-asses the crest at the end of 2013-14.
Hull City are nicknamed 'the Tigers'. A tiger first appeared on Hull's crest in 1947.
Hull City are associated with a tiger because of the colour of their strip. Their crest first bore a tiger's head in 1947 and the current representation has been used since 1979.
Liverpool FC was founded in 1892. The song "You'll Never Walk Alone" originates from the 1945 musical Carousel by Rodgers and Hammerstein. It gained popularity in Liverpool and was added to the Anfield repertoire after a 1963 cover by local band Gerry and the Pacemakers.
Impressions from the city of Liverpool's corporate seal survive from 1352 which include a bird of some description. Today the 'Liver bird' is a prominent symbol of the city and Liverpool FC. The actual species the bird represents is unknown.
Liverpool's crest features two flames in tribute to the victims of the Hillsborough disaster. An eternal flame burns at the Hillsborough memorial at Anfield.
Liverpool's Liver bird holds a small sprig in its mouth.
The top of Liverpool's crest is taken from the Shankly Gates, erected in 1982, eight years after Bill Shankly stood down as manager and a year after his death. The gate's decoration includes another Liver bird within a shield.
Liverpool wear this simple crest on their shirts but still employ the full red, green and yellow version for almost all other uses.
Manchester's first city crest was issued in 1958 and featured a Golden Eagle, which is said to represent the aviation industry, and was worn in the FA Cup Final of that year by Manchester United. Manchester City adopted it as prominent part of their badge in 1997.

In Britain the Golden Eagle can be found in Scotland but not Manchester.
Manchester City, like their local rivals, have a sailing ship on their crest to symbolise the city's emergence as a major port following the construction of the Manchester Ship Canal.
Although Manchester City now have three league titles, when this crest was introduced in 1997 they did not have three of anything significant so it seems the stars are purely decorative.
Manchester City's diagonal stripes represent Manchester's three rivers: the Irk, Irwell and Medlock.
The Latin 'Superbia in Proelio' translates as 'Pride in Battle'. Manchester City have used this as a motto since 1997.
The story of the origin of Manchester United's 'Red Devils' nickname has a few versions. A common element is the name Les Diables Rouge being picked up on a tour of France by Salford's rugby league club or by United themselves, depending on the source. It is said that Sir Matt Busby chose the name, possibly wanting an intimidating alternative to 'the Busby Babes'. United's crest first included the devil in 1972.
Manchester United, like their local rivals, have a sailing ship on their crest to symbolise the city's emergence as a major port following the construction of the Manchester Ship Canal.
Manchester United
Manchester United
Newcastle United's crest includes Newcastle's 12th century castle keep.
Newcastle United employed the city coat of arms as its crest for the first time in 1911 (and continuously from 1969 to 1976) and the current badge is heavily based on it. The seahorses are a nod to Newcastle's port. The lion is guardant (facing outwards).
Newcastle United
Newcastle United
The lion on Newcastle's city coat of arms holds a cross of St. George (red on white). Why the flag was modified for Newcastle United's crest I do not know.
Norwich City
The canary was first introduced to Norwich in the 16th century by Flemish refugees who had picked them up via Dutch colonies in the Caribbean before fleeing for England to avoid persecution by the Low Countries' Spanish occupiers. Norwich City first played in canary yellow shirts in 1907.

The lion is passant (front right paw raised, other three on ground) guardant. Like the castle, it is found on the city's coat of arms.
The building on Norwich City's crest is Norwich Castle, built in the 11th and 12th centuries. Like the lion, it is found on the city's coat of arms.
Southampton's tree represents the New Forest. The white rose is a symbol of the city.
Founded as St. Mary's Young Men's Association in 1885, renamed St. Mary's in 1887, then Southampton St. Mary's in 1894, the club finally settled on Southampton in 1897. It's association with the nearby St. Mary's church gave the club the nickname the Saints and ultimately the halo on its badge.

Water is depicted on the crest because the city sits on a deep water estuary known as Southampton Water where the rivers Test and Itchen meet the sea.
Southampton wear a monochrome version of their crest on their shirts: all gold on their red home kit and all white and black on their black away strip and white away shorts respectively.
Stoke City
This club was formed in 1863 as the Stoke Ramblers, became simply Stoke in 1878 and finally Stoke City in 1928. The Stoke area was a centre of ceramic production in the 17th, 18th and 19th centuries. It was referred to as the Staffordshire Potteries, giving the club the nickname 'the Potters'.
Sunderland has a colliery wheel on its crest in reference to the city's coalmining history and the Monkwearmouth Colliery in particular, the site of which the Stadium of Light is built on.

Red and white streamers are also pictured.
'Consectatio Excellentiae' is Latin for 'In Pursuit of Excellence', introduced as a motto with Sunderland's new crest in 1997.
Sunderland's crest includes both the Penshaw Monument, a 19th century replica of Athens' Temple of Hephaestus, and the Wearmouth Bridge, opened in 1929, which crosses the Wear less than half a mile from the Stadium of Light.
Sunderland's crest has two lions rampant, as does the city's coat of arms.
I think the circle behind Sunderland's Penshaw Monument is likely to be the Sun (rather than the Moon) so, technically speaking, it fits into the star category.
Swansea City's badge is based around a swan.
Swansea City
Swansea City's crest is white on their purple and yellow away shirt.
Tottenham Hotspur's crest features a gamecock fitted with spurs as might have been used for fighting by Harry Hotspur, the 14th century nobleman from whom the club took its name.
Tottenham Hotspur
Tottenham Hotspur
Tottenham's crest is white on their navy home shorts.
West Bromwich Albion
One of West Bromwich Albion's nicknames is 'the Throstles'. Throstle is a dialectal name for the song thrush, which nest in hawthorn bushes in the area and also lent their name to the people of West Bromwich in general.
West Bromwich Albion
West Bromwich Albion's throstle sits amongst the leaves and fruit of the common hawthorn shrub, which give the club's ground its name, The Hawthorns, and are common in the surrounding area.
West Ham United's crest features now demolished manor Green Street House, the former grounds of which the club is based on. It is known as 'Boleyn Castle' due to (unconfirmed) reports of an association with Anne Boleyn. Although commonly referred to as Upton Park, West Ham's stadium is officially named the Boleyn Ground.
West Ham United
West Ham United was born out of the football team of Thames Ironworks and Shipbuilding Company and they first wore a crest bearing crossed rivet hammers in the 1920s.
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The crests are copyright of their respective clubs.