Our Traditions

Salisbury is a dynamic, modern boarding school in the Northwest Corner of Connecticut. We take pride in the history that makes us so unique, and celebrate it with a number of traditions that have been passed down over the years.

We embrace the founding rector’s belief that a boy’s secondary school has the responsibility for addressing every aspect of development. Listed below are some of Salisbury’s traditions that continue to be such an important part of your overall school experience:


Like many Northwest Corner boarding schools, we welcome students and faculty of all faiths, but maintain our historic ties to the Episcopal Church. The entire school community gathers every Tuesday and Friday morning in the Chapel for reflection or to hear a message. These services embrace all faiths.

The Sarum Hymn, often sung during Chapel and throughout the year at events, is our official School Song. The Sarum Hymn was written by E.W. Parmelee, master at Salisbury from 1909 through 1927, and is to be sung to Haydn's St. Anthony Chorale. To listen to the Salisbury Gospel Choir sing the Sarum Hymn, click here. (Stanzas one and four.)

Sit-Down Meals

Meals are an important part of life in any boarding school. Twice a week, you will eat family style with your advisor and fellow students. This promotes a deeper sense of community and allows you the chance to get to know boys from older or younger classes than your own.

School Meetings

Weather permitting, we gather twice a week in the Quadrangle for updates from faculty members and students on what lies ahead in a given week. The school president oversees these meetings, giving the first words of welcome as well as the dismissal.


Another valued tradition that sets us apart from other boarding schools in the Northwest Corner is good sportsmanship toward opponents, coaches, referees and spectators who may be cheering for another team. A Salisbury team is expected to be magnanimous in victory and gracious in defeat. A victory by a winning team or squad is often applauded at school meetings.

Red Light in the Cupola

After a varsity team wins a sports match, the red light in the Main Building’s cupola is lit to alert the rest of the community to the team’s victory.

Hanging of the Greens

Shortly before students go on break for the winter holidays, the entire boarding school community gathers in the Chapel for the traditional Hanging of the Greens. We also celebrate the service of Lessons and Carols, sung by our joint student-faculty choir.

Dress Code

You will need wear a jacket and tie to class, sit-down meals, Chapel and special school events. In the winter, you may wear a turtleneck shirt instead of a tie and in the spring, Bermuda shorts may be worn on hot days. For other meals, you are permitted to wear collared shirts and trousers (no jeans). From the end of Saturday’s class until Monday morning, dress is casual.

Sixth Form Privileges

All sixth formers are entitled to wear a blue blazer with the Salisbury crest on the left jacket pocket. Graduates at commencement exercises traditionally wear a school blazer and white slacks. The “senior steps” are restricted to sixth form students.


The Salisbury Motto is Esse Quam Videri, which originates in Sallust’s Bellum Catalinarium, 54. Sallust compared Cato to Caesar and wrote that Cato preferred to be virtuous rather than appear to be so. Consequently, the less Cato sought recognition, the more he found it. “To be rather than to seem to be” is an affirmation of personal honor at the heart of the Salisbury experience.

School Crest

The Salisbury crest is colored red for bravery and gold for generosity. The four crosses above and below the crest symbolize faith in God through Christ. The shell is a symbol of spiritual journey or pilgrimage. The heart symbolizes charity and the arrows preparedness. The open book is for learning and the acorn and its brand for maturity.

School Mascot

In the spring of 1995, the Sixth Form adopted the Crimson Knight as the School’s mascot. It symbolized the history, character and devotion of the Knights represented in The Sarum Hymn.

Discover for yourself the unique traditions that make us a leading boarding school in Connecticut’s Northwest Corner by scheduling a campus tour today.


Salisbury Boys School Chapel 

Sit Down Meals

Salisbury Boys High School Meals 


Salisbury Boys High School Athletics

Red Light in the Cupola

Salisbury Boys High School in CT Traditions 

School Motto & Crest

Crest for All Boys High School in Salisbury, CT

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Salisbury School, A Private School for Boys in CT, School Crest
© 2014 Salisbury School
251 Canaan Road
Salisbury, CT 06068
Phone: 860-435-5700
Fax: 860-435-5750

We are a private, all-boy boarding high school in Connecticut committed to shaping high schooled-aged boys into men of character and promise who can rise to the challenges of the modern world.

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