UCM Logo


The heraldry of the oldest Spanish university, operating since 1293, is represented in the UCM logo, adhering to graphic rules and principles. It reflects the university’s location, name, and the heraldic swan, symbolically echoing the founder’s name, forming unity and harmony in the emblem.

UCM: Brand overview

Founded:20 May 1293
Founder:Cardinal Francisco Jiménez de Cisneros
Madrid, Spain
UCM is the largest university in Spain, known as Universidad Complutense de Madrid. It was established in 1499 under the patronage of Cardinal Cisneros. Located in Madrid, it was founded on the basis of the College of Estudios Generales, which had been operating since 1293 and subsequently gained university status. Today, it’s considered the oldest in the world, with 86,000 students enrolled.

Meaning and History

Universidad Complutense de Madrid Logo

The company’s logo plays not only on the name but also the place of the university’s founding. The town of Alcalá de Henares, where the estate for the campus was purchased, is called Complutum in Latin. This variant became the basis for the higher education institution’s name.

Similarly, there’s an echo in the depiction of a swan. Cardinal Cisneros’s surname, under whose order the university was opened, sounds like Cisne. Therefore, the university’s emblem depicts a noble snow-white bird under whose wing is UCM. This distinctive sign, together with the logo, forms a unified symbolism where all elements complement each other harmoniously. As a result, the image attributes act in the interest of the ancient university, highlighting its high status.

What is UCM?

UCM is an acronym formed from the phrase “Universidad Complutense de Madrid,” the Spanish name for Madrid’s Complutense University, the oldest university in the world. The educational institution was founded in 1293 and received the right to confer doctoral degrees in 1857. Today, it offers a wide range of educational programs and conducts scientific research.

A mandatory logo element is the expanded name, located at the bottom. The text structure is tiered and broken into three fragments. The first – “Universidad”- is medium-sized and occupies 60% of the field, written in capital letters. The second – “Complutense,” occupies 100% of the allotted space and is made in large font. The third – “Madrid,” is small, placed on 40% of the logo, indicating the university’s location.

The three-line structure of the key phrase visually balances the emblem, as the massive coat of arms has an elongated shape. Against its background, the university’s name would be unreadable. Moreover, the word “Complutense,” written larger than the rest, immediately catches the eye. This technique was used specifically to focus attention on the genuine name of the city in the Latin variant. This emphasizes the ancientness of the educational institution.

There are a few other brand names with different element distributions. For example, in one of them, the words are stacked vertically, and to the left is a coat of arms with a shield and swan. All letters are uppercase, so they are the same size and look proportional. The largest word is enclosed in a frame, so it’s large and voluminous.

UCM: Interesting Facts

The Universidad Complutense de Madrid, or UCM for short, is a very old and important school in Spain. It has done a lot for education, research, and helping society.

  1. Its Start: UCM started in 1293 because of King Sancho IV of Castile. First, it was in Alcalá, and then it moved to Madrid in the 1800s.
  2. Its Name: In 1499, Queen Isabella I made it official, and King Charles I gave it the name “Complutense” because of its first home, Alcalá de Henares.
  3. Famous People: Many smart and famous people studied or worked here, like Nobel Prize winners and big names in politics and writing.
  4. Great Research: UCM is known worldwide for its research in health, science, society, and more. It collaborates with other schools and organizations worldwide.
  5. Lots of Programs: You can study almost anything here, from short courses to PhDs in many subjects.
  6. Big Campus: Its campus is one of the biggest in Europe and has many old and important buildings.
  7. Spanish Language and Culture: UCM has helped make the Spanish language and culture known worldwide.
  8. Global Connections: It works with schools and research places all over, bringing in students and teachers from many countries.
  9. Cultural Spot: UCM isn’t just about studying. It hosts talks, workshops, and events everyone in Madrid can enjoy.
  10. Tech-Savvy: Lately, UCM has been using more technology to make learning and working together easier and better.

In short, UCM has been a big deal in education and culture for a very long time, and it continues to make a difference in Spain and beyond.

Font and Colors

Universidad Complutense de Madrid Emblem

The key symbol of CSM is the coat of arms, and its main element is the shield. It contains squares of two colors – eight gold and seven red. It has a crown (at the top) and tassels (at the bottom). The latter consists of cords and massive tassels of a silver shade, as well as a central stamp with three inscriptions. The top – is “Libertas,” the middle – is “Perfundet,” and the bottom – is “Omnia Luce.” The color of the letters is brown.

Pendants with large tassels protrude from behind the shield and are pointed downwards. As a sign of royal power, the crown is painted in gold and studded with precious stones. The background is a splayed swan, which seems to protect the university’s coat of arms. The white bird’s head with a red beak is proudly turned to the right.

All elements are surrounded by a ribbon with the legendary inscription “Universitas” (left), “Complutensis” (right), and “Matritensis” (on both sides in the center). The shape of the original border is a pointed shield. The font used is called Filosofia. A variant of this font is used in all other phrases. It’s considered individual and officially registered as part of the text. It has been equated to the university’s original symbolism.

UMC’s primary corporate color is red. It’s beautifully complemented by silver, gold, light yellow, black, and white. The latter is considered the background, but sometimes it’s replaced by black, against which the rest of the palette looks contrastingly bright. Only the shield is fully painted, while a thin dark line outlines the remaining elements.

UCM color codes

Raisin BlackHex color:#2c2520
RGB:44 37 32
CMYK:0 16 27 17
Pantone:PMS Black 4 C
Foreign CrimsonHex color:#cc0033
RGB:204 0 51
CMYK:0 100 75 20
Pantone:PMS 185 C
Vegas GoldHex color:#c6ad63
RGB:198 173 99
CMYK:0 13 50 22
Pantone:PMS 7407 C