Weathervane Roosters: The Origin Story

These days, weathervanes come in a vast array of different styles and designs… and you can even come up with your own ideas, with the help of decorative metalwork professionals who can help you create something truly unique and meaningful to you.

But one of the most common motifs that has long been used on many a weathervane is, of course, the not-so-humble rooster, a symbol that has appeared on rooftops, steeples, barns and more for centuries.

The first weathervanes were actually just bits of cloth or string tied to the tops of buildings so that it was possible to find out which way the wind was blowing. These later became more formal banners and this is where the word ‘vane’ comes from, an Old English word meaning flag or banner.

As for the rooster, you can trace its roots back to the Bible and the story of St Peter after the Last Supper. Herein, it reads that Peter would deny Jesus three times before the rooster crowed, which is why Christians now use the rooster as a symbol of St Peter.

This idea was then taken further by Pope Gregory I, who declared the rooster to be the best symbol for Christianity and it’s thought that this is what led to their weathervane popularity. Sooner rather than later, churches started using them all over the land!

Of course, you don’t have to have a rooster on your weathervane if you’d rather not and there are all sorts of other wonderful birds you could feature instead. We’re able to create vanes that feature partridges, crows, swallows… and even a dodo! So take a look and see if there’s something that piques your curiosity today.