GreatSeal.com logo

Main Pages

Front Page
Overview
Seal FAQs

Design Process
 1st Committee
 2nd Committee
 3rd Committee
 Final Design
 Description
 Explanation

Latin Mottoes
 E Pluribus Unum
    Source
 Annuit Coeptis
   Source
   Providence
   George Washington
   American Cause
 Novus Ordo Seclorum

   Source
   FDR

Symbols (front)
 Bald Eagle
 Shield
 Olive Branch
 Arrows
 Stars
 Rays of Light
 Cloud

Symbols (back)
 Pyramid
 Eye
 MDCCLXXVI

Great Seals
 Official Dies
 First Engravings
 First Painting
 1792 Medal
 Indian Medals
 1882 Medal
 One-Dollar Bill

Myths
 Eagle Side
 Pyramid Side

Themes
 Unity
 Peace
 Liberty
 Thirteen

Related
 Wild Turkey
 President's Seal
 Sightings
 Resources

Original Source of E PLURIBUS UNUM
Motto Carried in the Beak of the Bald Eagle on the Great Seal

Title page of the Gentleman's Magazine

The Latin motto "E Pluribus Unum" appeared on the title page of the annual volume of the Gentleman's Magazine or Monthly Intelligencer – next to a drawing of a hand holding a bouquet of different flowers.

Logo of the Gentleman's Magazine

The Gentleman's Magazine had been published monthly in London since 1731 and was well known to literate Americans in the 1770s. The annual volume with "E Pluribus Unum" at the bottom of its title page brought together the magazine's twelve editions from that year. It provided readers with lots of useful information.

Contents of the Gentleman's Magazine

This shows that America was originally likened to a bouquet of different flowers, where unity and individuality coexisted – as opposed to a "melting pot" that blended everyone together.

Melting pot

Historical content is based on the official history of the Great Seal.
Author and webwright: John D. MacArthur