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Flag of Western Pomerania

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Flag of Western Pomerania
Vorpommern flag.svg
Proportion3:5
Adopted1996 (current version)
22 October 1882 (first version)
DesignA horizontal divided into light blue and white stripes

The flag that serves as the symbol of the historical and geographical region of the Western Pomerania is divided horizontally into two stripes: light blue on the top and white on the bottom. It originated as the flag of the Province of Pomerania, Prussia, used from 1882 to 1935. Since 1996, it is officially recognized as the symbol of the historical region of Western Pomerania within Mecklenburg–Western Pomerania, Germany.

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Flag

Flag

A flag is a piece of fabric with a distinctive design and colours. It is used as a symbol, a signalling device, or for decoration. The term flag is also used to refer to the graphic design employed, and flags have evolved into a general tool for rudimentary signalling and identification, especially in environments where communication is challenging. Many flags fall into groups of similar designs called flag families. The study of flags is known as "vexillology" from the Latin vexillumcode: lat promoted to code: la , meaning "flag" or "banner".

Western Pomerania

Western Pomerania

Historical Western Pomerania, also called Cispomerania, Fore Pomerania, Front Pomerania or Hither Pomerania, is the western extremity of the historic region of Pomerania forming the southern coast of the Baltic Sea, Western Pomerania's boundaries have changed through the centuries as it belonged to various countries such as Poland, the Duchy of Pomerania, Sweden, Denmark, as well as Prussia which incorporated it as the Province of Pomerania.

Province of Pomerania (1815–1945)

Province of Pomerania (1815–1945)

The Province of Pomerania was a province of Prussia from 1815 to 1945. Pomerania was established as a province of the Kingdom of Prussia in 1815, an expansion of the older Brandenburg-Prussia province of Pomerania, and then became part of the German Empire in 1871. From 1918, Pomerania was a province of the Free State of Prussia until it was dissolved in 1945 following World War II, and its territory divided between Poland and Allied-occupied Germany. The city of Stettin was the provincial capital.

Prussia

Prussia

Prussia, known in German as Preußen, was one of, if not the, most prominent German states of its time, located on the southeast coast of the Baltic Sea. It formed the German Empire when it united the German states in 1871. It was de facto dissolved by an emergency decree transferring powers of the Prussian government to German Chancellor Franz von Papen in 1932 and de jure by an Allied decree in 1947. For centuries, the House of Hohenzollern ruled Prussia, expanding its size with the Prussian Army. Prussia, with its capital at Königsberg and then, when it became the Kingdom of Prussia in 1701, Berlin, decisively shaped the history of Germany.

Mecklenburg-Vorpommern

Mecklenburg-Vorpommern

Mecklenburg-Vorpommern, also known by its anglicized name Mecklenburg–Western Pomerania, is a state in the north-east of Germany. Of the country's sixteen states, Mecklenburg-Vorpommern ranks 14th in population; it covers an area of 23,179 km2 (8,949 sq mi), making it the sixth largest German state in area; and it is 16th in population density. Schwerin is the state capital and Rostock is the largest city. Other major cities include Neubrandenburg, Stralsund, Greifswald, Wismar, and Güstrow. It was named after the 2 regions of Mecklenburg and Vorpommern.

Germany

Germany

Germany, officially the Federal Republic of Germany, is a country in Central Europe. It is the second-most populous country in Europe after Russia, and the most populous member state of the European Union. Germany is situated between the Baltic and North seas to the north, and the Alps to the south; it covers an area of 357,022 square kilometres (137,847 sq mi), with a population of almost 84 million within its 16 constituent states. Germany borders Denmark to the north, Poland and the Czech Republic to the east, Austria and Switzerland to the south, and France, Luxembourg, Belgium, and the Netherlands to the west. The nation's capital and most populous city is Berlin and its financial centre is Frankfurt; the largest urban area is the Ruhr.

Design

The flag is a rectangle divided horizontally into two stripes: light blue on the top and white on the bottom. The aspect ratio height to width ratio, used in the flag established in 1996, is equal 3:5. The aspect ratio originally used by the historical Province of Pomerania from 1882 to 1935, was 2:3.[1]

History

Pomeranian duchies

The banner used by the forces of Casimir V, duke of Pomerania-Stettin, during the Battle of Grunwald in 1410.
The banner used by the forces of Casimir V, duke of Pomerania-Stettin, during the Battle of Grunwald in 1410.

The griffin is a traditional symbol of the West Pomerania, used since 12th century. Between 12th and 13th century, the griffin become the symbol of the House of Griffin, that ruled in that area. Subsequently, the red griffin on the white background had become the symbol of the Duchy of the Pomerania-Stettin. In the 1730s, that design had become the symbol of the entire Western Pomerania. In 1410, during the Battle of Grunwald, the forces of Casimir V, duke of Pomerania-Stettin, used a white banner with a red griffin on it.[2]

Province of Pomerania

Flag of the Province of Pomerania, Prussia used from 1882 to 1935.
Flag of the Province of Pomerania, Prussia used from 1882 to 1935.

In 1802, the provisional representatives in the Order-in-Council of the Kingdom of Prussia, under the rule of king Frederick William III of Prussia, were ordered to wear blue greatcoats, in addition to theirs mess dress uniforms. To distinguish representatives of different provinces, the collars of the greatcoats were assigned different colours. Originally, the representatives of the Province of Pomerania had white and gold (yellow) collars. In 1813, the representatives of Pomerania were given entirely white collars. Additionally, the soldieries of the Pomeranian Landwehr formations were given blue uniforms with white collars. Colours of such design became associated with the colours of the province. On 22 October 1882, the blue and white were legally defined as the colours of the province, including the establishment of the flag. It was divided horizontally into two equal stripes: light blue on top, and white on the bottom. Its aspect ratio height to width ratio was equal 2:3. The blue was officially defined as Prussian blue (dark blue), however, it wasn't popular, with usage of light blue being preferred instead. The flag was used until 1935, when Nazi Germany forbid its provinces from using its flags, ordering them to replace them with the national flag.[3][4][5]

Mecklenburg–Western Pomerania

The unoficial flag of Mecklenburg–Western Pomerania used in 1990.
The unoficial flag of Mecklenburg–Western Pomerania used in 1990.

The state of Mecklenburg–Western Pomerania, Germany, had established its flag in 1990, following the German reunification. In 1990, prior to the establishment of the official flag, the state unofficially used the historical flag of Mecklenburg. It was a rectangle divided horizontally into three equal stripes, that were, from top to bottom, dark blue, yellow, and red. In the centre was placed the historical coat of arms of Mecklenburg, in form of the black head of a bull in yellow crown with white horns, placed in the yellow escutcheon (shield). Such flag was hoisted in front of the Reichstag building in Berlin during the celebrations of the German Unity Day on 3 October 1990.[6][7]

Civil flag of Mecklenburg–Western Pomerania used since 1990.State flag of Mecklenburg–Western Pomerania used since 1990.
Civil flag of Mecklenburg–Western Pomerania used since 1990.
Civil flag of Mecklenburg–Western Pomerania used since 1990.State flag of Mecklenburg–Western Pomerania used since 1990.
State flag of Mecklenburg–Western Pomerania used since 1990.

The official flag of the state had been adopted on 29 January 1991. It was designed by Norbert Buske. The civil flag consists of five horizontal stripes, that are from the top to bottom: blue (ultramarine), white, yellow, white, and red (vermilion). The proportions of the stripes are equal to 4:3:1:3:4. The colours are combined from the flags of two historical regions of the country, blue and white flag of Western Pomerania, and blue-yellow-red flag of Mecklenburg. The state flag has a similar design, with the two charges from the coat of arms of the state, additionally placed in the centre. It includes a black head of a bull with white horns wearing a yellow crown, placed on the left, and a red griffin with yellow beak and claws, placed on the right. The portion of the yellow stripe behind them, is replaced with the white background.[3]

Historical region of Western Pomerania

The flag of the historical region of Western Pomerania used since 1996.
The flag of the historical region of Western Pomerania used since 1996.

In 1996, the design based on the flag of the historical Province of Pomerania, had been officially recognized as the symbol of the historical region of Western Pomerania within Mecklenburg–Western Pomerania, Germany. The flag is a rectangle divided horizontally into two stripes: light blue on the top and white on the bottom. The aspect ratio height to width ratio is equal 3:5, as opposed to 2:3, used by the original flag of the Province of Pomerania.[1] The flag is also occasionally flown in Poland.[8]

West Pomeranian Voivodeship

The flag of the West Pomeranian Voivodeship, Poland, used since 2000.
The flag of the West Pomeranian Voivodeship, Poland, used since 2000.

The West Pomeranian Voivodeship, Poland was established in 1999.[9] Its flag is a rectangle with the aspect ratio of height to width ratio equal 5:8. It is divided into three equal vertical stripes, that are white, red, and white. In the middle of the flag, within the red stripe, is the coat of arms of the voivodeship, a white shield, with red griffin with golden (yellow) beak and claws, that is faced to the right.[2][10] The flag was designed by Hanna Dąbrowska, while the coat of arms in the flag's design was by Jerzy Bąk. The design was based on the red griffin present on the banner used by the forces of Casimir V, duke of Pomerania-Stettin, during the Battle of Grunwald in 1410.[2] It was approved by the West Pomeranian Voivodeship Sejmik on 23 November 2000.[11]

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Casimir V, Duke of Pomerania

Casimir V, Duke of Pomerania

Duke Casimir V of Pomerania was a member of the House of Griffins and a Duke of Pomerania. He ruled in Pomerania-Stettin together with his brother Otto II from 1413 to 1428. After 1428, he ruled Pomerania-Stettin alone.

Pomerania-Stettin

Pomerania-Stettin

The Duchy of Pomerania-Stettin, also known as the Duchy of Stettin, and the Duchy of Szczecin, was a feudal duchy in Farther Pomerania within the Holy Roman Empire. Its capital was Szczecin. It was ruled by the Griffin dynasty. It existed in the eras of the High and Late Middle Ages, and the early modern period, between 1160 and 1264, between 1295 and 1523, and between 1532 and 1625.

Battle of Grunwald

Battle of Grunwald

The Battle of Grunwald, Battle of Žalgiris, or First Battle of Tannenberg, was fought on 15 July 1410 during the Polish–Lithuanian–Teutonic War. The alliance of the Crown of the Kingdom of Poland and the Grand Duchy of Lithuania, led respectively by King Władysław II Jagiełło (Jogaila), and Grand Duke Vytautas, decisively defeated the German Teutonic Order, led by Grand Master Ulrich von Jungingen. Most of the Teutonic Order's leadership were killed or taken prisoner.

Griffin

Griffin

The griffin, griffon, or gryphon is a legendary creature with the body, tail, and back legs of a lion; the head and wings of an eagle; and sometimes an eagle's talons as its front feet. Because the lion was traditionally considered the king of the beasts, and the eagle the king of the birds, by the Middle Ages, the griffin was thought to be an especially powerful and majestic creature. Since classical antiquity, griffins were known for guarding treasures and priceless possessions.

House of Griffin

House of Griffin

The House of Griffin or Griffin dynasty was a dynasty ruling the Duchy of Pomerania from the 12th century until 1637. The name "Griffins" was used by the dynasty after the 15th century and had been taken from the ducal coat of arms. Duke Wartislaw I was the first historical ruler of the Duchy of Pomerania and the founder of the Griffin dynasty. The most prominent Griffin was Eric of Pomerania, who became king of the Kalmar Union in 1397, thus ruling Denmark, Sweden and Norway. The last Griffin duke of Pomerania was Bogislaw XIV, who died during the Thirty Years' War, which led to the division of Pomerania between Brandenburg-Prussia and Sweden. Duchess Anna von Croy, daughter of Duke Bogislaw XIII and the last Griffin, died in 1660.

List of banners in the Battle of Grunwald

List of banners in the Battle of Grunwald

The following tables list the banners of the Lithuanian and Polish forces participating in the Battle of Grunwald, (1410)

Province of Pomerania (1815–1945)

Province of Pomerania (1815–1945)

The Province of Pomerania was a province of Prussia from 1815 to 1945. Pomerania was established as a province of the Kingdom of Prussia in 1815, an expansion of the older Brandenburg-Prussia province of Pomerania, and then became part of the German Empire in 1871. From 1918, Pomerania was a province of the Free State of Prussia until it was dissolved in 1945 following World War II, and its territory divided between Poland and Allied-occupied Germany. The city of Stettin was the provincial capital.

Order in Council

Order in Council

An Order-in-Council is a type of legislation in many countries, especially the Commonwealth realms. In the United Kingdom this legislation is formally made in the name of the monarch by and with the advice and consent of the Privy Council (King-in-Council), but in other countries the terminology may vary. The term should not be confused with Order of Council, which is made in the name of the Council without royal assent.

Kingdom of Prussia

Kingdom of Prussia

The Kingdom of Prussia was a German kingdom that constituted the state of Prussia between 1701 and 1918. It was the driving force behind the unification of Germany in 1871 and was the leading state of the German Empire until its dissolution in 1918. Although it took its name from the region called Prussia, it was based in the Margraviate of Brandenburg. Its capital was Berlin.

Frederick William III of Prussia

Frederick William III of Prussia

Frederick William III was King of Prussia from 16 November 1797 until his death in 1840. He was concurrently Elector of Brandenburg in the Holy Roman Empire until 6 August 1806, when the Empire was dissolved.

Greatcoat

Greatcoat

A greatcoat is a large, woollen overcoat designed for warmth and protection against wind and weather, and features a collar that can be turned up and cuffs that can be turned down to protect the face and the hands, whilst the short rain-cape at the shoulders protects from the wind and repels rain. In the 19th century, the 'watchcoat' was part of a soldier's military uniform, to be worn whilst on watch, hence the term watchcoat.

Mess dress uniform

Mess dress uniform

Mess dress uniform is the most formal type of uniforms used by military personnel, police personnel, and other uniformed services members. It frequently consists of a mess jacket, trousers, white dress shirt and a black bow tie, along with orders and medals insignia. Design may depend on regiment or service branch, e.g. army, navy, air force, marines, etc. In Western dress codes, mess dress uniform is the supplementary alternative equivalent to the civilian black tie for evening wear or black lounge suit for day wear although military uniforms are the same for day and evening wear. Mess dress uniforms are typically less formal than full dress uniform, but more formal than service dress uniform.

Source: "Flag of Western Pomerania", Wikipedia, Wikimedia Foundation, (2023, January 25th), https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Flag_of_Western_Pomerania.

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References
  1. ^ a b "Mecklenburg-Vorpommern". www.smev.de. Retrieved 2022-08-17.
  2. ^ a b c "Herb i Flaga Województwa". bip.rbip.wzp.pl (in Polish).
  3. ^ a b Norbert Buske: Wappen, Farben und Hymnen des Landes Mecklenburg-Vorpommern. Eine Erläuterung der neuen Hoheitszeichen des Landes verbunden mit einem Gang durch die Geschichte der beiden Landesteile dargestellt an der Entwicklung ihrer Wappenbilder. Mit Aufnahmen von Thomas Helms. Edition Temmen, Bremen 1993, ISBN 3-86108-202-0, p. 98ff.
  4. ^ Hellmuth Hecker; Günter Hoog: Deutsche Flaggen: Sammlung von Vorschriften zum Flaggenrecht Deutschlands und der deutschen Küstenländer, Hamburg: Instituts für Internationale Angelegenheiten der Universität Hamburg, 1978. ISBN 978-3-7875-2132-6
  5. ^ Jürgen Arndt (author), Hugo Gerard Ströhl (illustration): Wappen und Flaggen des Deutschen Reiches und seiner Bundesstaaten (1871–1918), Dortmund: Harenberg Kommunikation, 1979, ISBN 978-3921846810
  6. ^ Heinz Machatschek: Visitenkarte der neuen Länder der DDR, Junge Welt. September 1990.
  7. ^ Horizont, no. 40/1990, Berlin: VEB Verlag für die Wirtschaft. 1990.
  8. ^ Biuletyn Polskiego Towarzystwa Weksylologicznego "Flaga", no. 13/14. January-April 2001. ISSN 1509-2429. p. 22.
  9. ^ Ustawa z dnia 24 lipca 1998 r. o wprowadzeniu zasadniczego trójstopniowego podziału terytorialnego państwa (Dz.U. z 1998 r. nr 96, poz. 603).
  10. ^ "Herb województwa zachodniopomorskiego" (PDF). bip.rbip.wzp.pl (in Polish).
  11. ^ Resolution No. XVI/149/2000 of the Sejmik of the West Pomeranian Voivodeship from 23 November 2000.

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