Tuesday, May 24, 2011

My favorite logo in sports

One day while watching an English football game on tv, it seemed to me from quick close up glimpses that one team was wearing the emblem of the Agnus Dei on their chests.  This struck me as odd, since no team in American professional sports has a logo with anything remotely like the religious significance of the Agnus Dei.  So I assumed it wasn't really the Agnus Dei, but just some object that suggested the Agnus Dei.  I mean, how could it be the Agnus Dei?   What possible reason could a football team have for displaying the Agnus Dei on their uniform?

Well, it was the Agnus Dei, and here's the story:

Preston North End Football Club is one of the oldest clubs in England, having been founded in 1888.  Its logo is taken from the city of Preston, Lancashire's coat of arms.  Preston was originally a  Church property called "Priests' Tun," tun being the Saxon word for farm or estate. Over time this was corrupted to "Preston."  The city's symbol was a standing lamb, the symbol of St. Wilfrid, since St. Wilfrid was the patron of Preston's parish church.  During the Reformation, the name of the parish church was changed to St. John's, and, accordingly, Preston's symbol was modified to St. John the Baptist's symbol, a seated lamb.  Preston remained a stronghold of Catholicism long after Henry VIII's time.   Perhaps the change to the city's coat of arms was so slight because the people hoped it would be for a short time only.
Unfortunately, the club has just been relegated to English League One, two leagues below Barclay's Premier League, the top professional league in England.


  1. I am A ONE supporter and have this as a discrete tattoo. It's a great badge.You see the Agnus dei of course in all Catholic churches.

  2. Sheila,
    Thanks for the comment. I am a Liverpool supporter. We don't see League One matches at all in the US. btw, what does A ONE mean?