Used from 1864–1867 during the Second Mexican Empire of Maximilian I. This empire was established after a joint British, Spanish, and French occupational force temporarily invaded Mexico to force payment of Mexican debts. The British and Spanish forces soon left, but the French forces stayed on to support the reign of Maximilian.
The Habsburg Archduke Ferdinand Maximilian of Austria and his wife Belgian wife Carlota, a cousin of Queen Victoria of the United Kingdom, were placed on the throne of Mexico as Emperor Maximilian I and Empress Carlota of Mexico. They ruled with the support of the French occupational forces, the Roman Catholic clergy, conservative elements of the upper class, and some indigenous communities. Although the French, then considered one of the most efficient armies of the world, suffered an initial defeat in the Battle of Puebla in 1862 (now commemorated as the Cinco de Mayo holiday), they eventually defeated the Mexican government forces led by the general Ignacio Zaragoza and set the couple upon the throne.
In 1863, Maximiliano de Habsburgo, now the second Emperor of Mexico, reintroduced the royal crown, and the coat of arms was surrounded by the Imperial mantle with the motto "Religion, Independence" (Religión, Independencia). In 1865, in the second version for Maximiliano, the royal crown disappeared and two glyphs were introduced with the motto "Equity in Justice" (Equidad en la Justicia).