The International Congress of Genealogical and Heraldic Sciences is a bi-annual conference discussing topics of heraldic and genealogical interest. The Congress brings together scholars and other interested parties from all the nations of Europe and from many countries around the world. The first Congress was held in Barcelona in 1929 and at the second Congress, held in 1953, it was decided that future meetings would be held every two years. There have been two exceptions. The main themes have changed greatly over the years and some disciplines have ceased to form any part of the Congresses' study. Abandoned subjects include sphragistics and iconography, which were dealt with at Paris, and vexillology, which was to have been one of the themes at Congresses after Bern. Genetics, which had been a subject of discussion at Stockholm in 1960, did not reappear until the Ottawa Congress of 1996. Chivalric Orders was another discarded subject, despite featuring in the congresses held at Rome/Naples, Madrid, Stockholm and Edinburgh, as well as in a few papers presented at Madrid in 1982. Unlike the other abandoned disciplines, Chivalric Orders had been the focus of a special commission that existed through the various early congresses and evolved into the International Commission for Orders of Chivalry.