The emmet might be understood as a symbol of hard work and of wisdom, although symbolism in heraldry always has to be approached with a certain skepticism, as the arms might be canting, or the symbolism might not apply in a particular case. In his A Display of Heraldrie (1610), John Guillim of the English College of Arms says:
"By the Emmet or Pismire may be signified a Man of great Labour, Wisdom, and Providence in all his Affairs, and of a pregnant and ready Memory."
The emmet is very frequently shown as tergiant, or with his back to the viewer, as if he were being seen from above, from the air.
Examples from Britain
- Massy: argent a bend azure between three emmets sable
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