The School Crest
The School crest was adopted at a College Council meeting on 23 August 1888. It now forms the badge worn on the uniform. The College Council decided to use the same crest as that used by the Presbyterian Church of New South Wales, but with minor modifications.
The Church’s crest consisted of a shield with the words nectamen consumebatur surrounding it. A burning bush, the stars of the Southern Cross and a Latin cross, in outline, were on the shield. At the base, rather indefinitely, were the floral emblems of Scotland, England and Ireland, with only the thistle and rose clearly defined. Surrounding the shield was a border with the words "Presbyterian Church of New South Wales". At the top of the border was the star of Jacob. Behind both shield and borders was the cross of St. Andrew in blue.
The School modified the crest by changing the words "Presbyterian Church of New South Wales" to "Presbyterian Ladies' College, Sydney" and substituting the School motto sancte sapienter for nec tamen consumebatur. A Maltese cross device was placed at the top of the shield.
At Federation in 1901, the Australian Presbyterian Church adopted as its crest the NSW crest, changing "New South Wales" to "Australia". In 1939 the General Assembly of Australia adopted a new crest: the star of Jacob disappeared, the Latin cross was added and the floral emblems were redrawn with the thistle in centre position. These changes of 1939 account for the differences between the school's crest and the Church's crest today.
The school's crest can be found in the tiles on the verandah outside the main door, near the College Hall. Traditionally, the school's crest has been produced in the school colours red and white.
The School Motto
The School motto was also adopted on 23 August 1888. It was decided that the motto should be "sancte sapienter". No translation was given of the Latin, but a rather loose translation is: "be holy wisely". The motto encapsulates the two broad aims of the school religious and academic education.