From The Collaborative International Dictionary of English v.0.48:

Herald \Her"ald\, n. [OE. herald, heraud, OF. heralt, heraut,
   herault, F. h['e]raut, LL. heraldus, haraldus, fr. (assumed)
   OHG. heriwalto, hariwaldo, a (civil) officer who serves the
   army; hari, heri, army + waltan to manage, govern, G. walten;
   akin to E. wield. See Harry, Wield.]
   1. (Antiq.) An officer whose business was to denounce or
      proclaim war, to challenge to battle, to proclaim peace,
      and to bear messages from the commander of an army. He was
      invested with a sacred and inviolable character.
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   2. In the Middle Ages, the officer charged with the above
      duties, and also with the care of genealogies, of the
      rights and privileges of noble families, and especially of
      armorial bearings. In modern times, some vestiges of this
      office remain, especially in England. See {Heralds'
      College} (below), and King-at-Arms.
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   3. A proclaimer; one who, or that which, publishes or
      announces; as, the herald of another's fame. --Shak.
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   4. A forerunner; a a precursor; a harbinger.
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            It was the lark, the herald of the morn. --Shak.
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   5. Any messenger. "My herald is returned." --Shak.
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   Heralds' College, in England, an ancient corporation,
      dependent upon the crown, instituted or perhaps recognized
      by Richard III. in 1483, consisting of the three
      Kings-at-Arms and the Chester, Lancaster, Richmond,
      Somerset, Windsor, and York Heralds, together with the
      Earl Marshal. This retains from the Middle Ages the charge
      of the armorial bearings of persons privileged to bear
      them, as well as of genealogies and kindred subjects; --
      called also College of Arms.
      [1913 Webster]

From The Collaborative International Dictionary of English v.0.48:

Herald \Her"ald\, v. t. [imp. & p. p. Heralded; p. pr. & vb.
   n. Heralding.] [Cf. OF. herauder, heraulder.]
   To introduce, or give tidings of, as by a herald; to
   proclaim; to announce; to foretell; to usher in. --Shak.
   [1913 Webster]
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