Origin of the coats of arms of Germany and its federal states


Origin of the coats of arms of Germany and its federal states

The origin of the coats of arms of Germany and its federal states in the narrowest sense are laws and regulations of the second half of the 20th century.
After the end of the Third Reich, Germany had lost significant parts of its territory and was divided in four occupation-zones. These occupation zones parted several former states or detached parts of these. The state of Prussia, which spread over more than half the territory of Germany got shattered. On its former grounds several new states were formed.
Some of these states were direct successors of former states, although the former borders had changed. Many of these states were new constructions. In some cases parts of former states were declared states, in other cases, parts of different states formed a new state. Only the Town states of Hamburg and Bremen survived the end of the Third Reich without significant changes of territory.
In 1957, the Saarland and in 1990 the five states of the former German Democratic Republic joined the Federal Republic. The Federal State and the single states all created new coats of arms.
Although these coats of arms were new creations, as were the states they represent, only the combination of the fields within the partition can be considered new. The states did not create new coat of arms, but used the centuries old coats of arms of the former ruling houses and the regions, they were formed of. These old coats of arms were used as the coat of arms or fields of the coat of arms of the new states.

Design

Below, the coats of arms are presented, in a table of four rows. The first row only shows the present coats of arms. The second row shows their predecessors, the use of these charges and shields in historic coats of arms that led to them. The third row gives a close view of the single fields from within each coat. They are arranged in the heraldic way, from the upper left field to the lower left field, followed by the center field.The last row shows a map of the territory that the connected coat of arms or field represents.

During the rule of the Third Reich the German coat of arms was replaced by a national emblem. The national emblem of the Third Reich (1935-1945) shows a swastika, surrounded by a circular oak wreath. Above the oak wreath is an eagle with spread wings, looking to the right. The whole emblem is painted in black color. The emblem's parts are outlined in white. The whole emblem is depicted in the typical Nazi-style of "neo classicisism". There is no shield.
The emblem was established by a regulation made by Adolf Hitler."Regulation concerning the national emblem of the empire of November 5th, 1935"
To express the unity of party and state in relation to their emblems too, I decide:
Article 1 The empire holds as emblem of its nationality the national emblem of the National Socialist German Workers Party.
Article 2 The national emblems of the Wehrmacht remain intact.
Article 3 The announcement concerning the imperial coat of arms and the imperial eagle (Reichsgesetzbl. Pg 1877) is cancelled. Article 4 In agreement with the Representative of the Führer, the Imperial Minister of the Interior will enact the regulations necessary to implement article 1.
Berlin, November 1, 1935
The Führer and Imperial Chancellor Adolf Hitler
The Imperial Minister of the Interior Frick
The Representative of the Führer R. Heß Imperial Minister without Portfolio
[cite book
last=Hitler
first=Adolf (The Führer and Imperial Chancellor)
authorlink=
coauthors=Frick, Wilhelm (The Imperial Minister of the Interior of the German Empire) and Heß, Rudolf (Representative of the Führer and Imperial Minister without Portfolio)
title=Verordnung über das Hoheitszeichen des Reichs vom 5. November 1935 (Regulation concerning the national emblem of the empire of November 5th, 1935)
publisher=
date=1935-11-1
location=Berlin
pages=
url=http://www.documentarchiv.de/ns.html 1935 Verordnung über das Hoheitszeichen des Reichs (05.11.1935)
doi=
id=
isbn=
]
"Regulation concerning the design of the national emblem of the empire of March 7th, 1936" In relation to the Regulation concerning the national emblem of the empire of November 5th, 1935, article 1 I decide: The national emblem of the Empire shows the swastika, surrounded by an oak wreath, on the oak wreath an eagle with spread wings. The head of the eagle is turned to the right. For the heraldic design of the national emblem, the included patterns are decisive. The artistic design is varied for each special purpose.
The Führer and Imperial Chancellor Adolf Hitler
The Imperial Minister of the Interior Frick
The Representative of the Führer R. Heß Imperial Minister without Portfolio

[cite book
last=Hitler
first=Adolf (The Führer and Imperial Chancellor)
authorlink=
coauthors=Frick, Wilhelm (The Imperial Minister of the Interior of the German Empire) and Heß, Rudolf (Representative of the Führer and Imperial Minister without Portfolio)
title=Verordnung über die Gestaltung Hoheitszeichen des Reichs vom 7.März 1936 (Regulation concerning the design of the national emblem of the empire of March 7th, 1936)
publisher=
date=1936-3-7
location=Berlin
pages=
url=http://www.documentarchiv.de/ns.html 1936 Verordnung über die Gestaltung des Hoheitszeichens des Reichs (07.03.1936)
doi=
id=
isbn=
]

The coat of arms of the Weimar Republic

The coat of arms of the Deutscher Bund, a confederation of German States from 1815 – 1848 and 1850 – 1866 shows a black eagle, the wings opened. Its beak, tongue and claws are red. With exception of the oversized tail feathers, the design is realistic. The yellow (golden) shield is surrounded by the words Deutscher Bund (German confederation)
The coat of arms was the result of a decision of the federal assembly. Federal decision about coat of arms and colors of the German Confederation of March 19, 1848Thus, the decision was made:The federal assembly constitutes the old German imperial eagle with the surrounding scripture "German Confederation" and the colors of the former German emperial coat of arms - black, red, gold - to be the coat of arms and colors of the German Confederation and reserves the right, to make further decision about its use according to the lecture of the committee. [cite book
last=The Federal Assembly of the German Confederation
first=
authorlink=
coauthors=
title=Bundesbeschluß über Wappen und Farben des Deutschen Bundes vom 9. März 1848. Federal decision about coat of arms and colors of the confederation of German states of march 9, 1848
publisher=
date=1948-3-9
location=Frankfurt
pages=
url=http://www.verfassungen.de/de/de06-66/bundesakte15-i.htm Bundesbeschluß über Wappen und Farben des Deutschen Bundes
doi=
id=
isbn=
]

The coat of arms of the Holy Roman Empire

*The shield of Baden-Wuerttemberg shows the coat of arms of the former dukedom of Swabia. It is charged with three black leopards (lying lions) on a yellow field. Its origin is the dynasty of Hohenstaufen. The members of this family were dukes of Swebia. From 1138 to 1254 members of this family were Emperors of the Holy Roman Empire.
*On the shield is a crown, consisting of a row of six smaller shields, the two central shields are slightly taller.
**The first shield shows the coat of arms of Franconia, called the Fränkischer Rechen (Franconian rake). This field represents Tauberfranken, the region around the river Tauber in the northeastern part of Baden Wuerttemberg. It was part of the dukedom of Franconia. While the main part of Franconia became part of Bavaria, this area became separated and part of Baden Wuerttemberg. The coat of arms is charged with three white pikes on a red field. This was the coat of arms of the prince bishops of Würzburg, who were also dukes of Franconia. [cite web
last=Scheufele
first=Karl Michael
authorlink=
coauthors=
title=Coat of Arms and Flags
work=
publisher=Bayerische Staatskanzlei
date=
url=http://www.bayern.de/fsp/engl/arms.html
format=
doi=
accessdate=2007-07-25
]
**The second shield shows the coat of arms of the House of Hohenzollern. It represents a region north of lake Constance around Hohenzollern castle, the ancestral seat of the House of Hohenzollern. The coat of arms of Hohenzollern is parted per cross. the first and third field are empty shields of white (silver) color, the second and fourth shield are painted in black.
**The third shield shows the coat of arms of Baden, a red bend on a golden shield. This part of the coat of arms of Baden Wuerttemberg represents the former Margraviate/ Grand duchy of Badenia [cite web
last=Schiering
first=Timo
authorlink=
coauthors=Christian Kübrich
title=Die Wappen der Deutschen Bundesländer
work=
publisher=Otto-Friedrich-Universität Bamberg; Fakultät GGeo; Lehrstuhl für Historische Hilfswissenschaften
date=2005
url=http://web.uni-bamberg.de/ggeo/hilfswissenschaften/studarb/HP%20HIW/4.htm
format=
doi=
accessdate=2007-09-26
] , the western part of Baden Wuerttemberg. As one of the two biggest predecessor of Baden Wuerttemberg, also part of the state’s name, this shield is about 10 percent bigger than the others.
**The fourth shield shows the coat of arms of Wuerttemberg. On a golden shield, there are three superposed deer antlers. This shield represents the Region of Wuerttemberg [cite web
last=Schiering
first=Timo
authorlink=
coauthors=Christian Kübrich
title=Die Wappen der Deutschen Bundesländer
work=
publisher=Otto-Friedrich-Universität Bamberg; Fakultät GGeo; Lehrstuhl für Historische Hilfswissenschaften
date=2005
url=http://web.uni-bamberg.de/ggeo/hilfswissenschaften/studarb/HP%20HIW/4.htm
format=
doi=
accessdate=2007-09-26
] , the other main part of the state, situated in the eastern part. Because of the same reasons, it has the same size as the coat of arms of Badenia.
**The fifth shield shows the coat of arms of the elector Palatinate. This field represents those parts of former Electoral Palatinate [cite web
last=Schiering
first=Timo
authorlink=
coauthors=Christian Kübrich
title=Die Wappen der Deutschen Bundesländer
work=
publisher=Otto-Friedrich-Universität Bamberg; Fakultät GGeo; Lehrstuhl für Historische Hilfswissenschaften
date=2005
url=http://web.uni-bamberg.de/ggeo/hilfswissenschaften/studarb/HP%20HIW/4.htm
format=
doi=
accessdate=2007-09-26
] , on the right side of river Rhine. The black field is charged with a yellow lion rampant, claws and tongue are painted in red.
**The sixth shield shows the coat of arms of Further Austria, a shield gules, party per fess argent [cite web
last=Schiering
first=Timo
authorlink=
coauthors=Christian Kübrich
title=Die Wappen der Deutschen Bundesländer
work=
publisher=Otto-Friedrich-Universität Bamberg; Fakultät GGeo; Lehrstuhl für Historische Hilfswissenschaften
date=2005
url=http://web.uni-bamberg.de/ggeo/hilfswissenschaften/studarb/HP%20HIW/4.htm
format=
doi=
accessdate=2007-09-26
] . This shield represents the former possessions of the house of Habsburg, the family of the former Austrian Emperors.

The coat of arms was created after the creation of the state of Baden-Wuerttemberg, codified in a special law.Law concerning the coat of arms of the state of Baden-Wuerttemberg of May 3, 1954On base of article 24 clause 2 of the constitution, on April 28. 1954, the parliament has decided the following law, which is hereby proclaimed:§ 1. (1) The coat of arms of the state of Baden-Wuerttemberg shows in a golden shield three pacing black lions with red tongs. It is used as the greater and the smaller coat of arms.(2) In the greater coat of arms of the state, on the shield rests a crown with badges of the historical coats of arms of Badenia, Wuerttemberg, Hohenzollern, Palatinate, Franconia and Further Austria. The shield is held by a golden deer and a golden griffon, which are armored in red. (3) At the smaller coat of arms of the state, on the shield rests a crown of leafs (people’s crown).... ...Stuttgart, May 3. 1954 The government of the state of Baden-Wuerttemberg: Dr. Gebhard Müller Fr. Ulrich Simpfendörfer Dr. Frank Leibfried Hohlwegler Fiedler Farny Dichtel Dr. Werber [Citation
last=Der Landtag des Landes Baden Württemberg
first=
author-link =
last2 =
first2 =
author2-link =
title=Gesetz über das Wappen des Landes Baden-Württemberg vom 3. Mai 1954
newspaper =Gesetzblatt für Baden-Württemberg
pages=69
year=1967
date=
url=http://www.verfassungen.de/de/bw/bw-wappengesetz54.htm
]

The coat of arms of Hohenstaufen

The House of Hohenzollern is a noble family and royal dynasty of electors and kings, Prussia and emperors of Germany. It originated in the area around the town of Hechingen in Swabia during the 11th century. They took their name from their ancestral home, the Burg Hohenzollern castle near the forementioned town. The family coat of arms, first adopted in 1192, began as a simple shield quarterly sable and argent. The head and shoulders of a hound were added in 1317 by Frederick IV

The coat of arms of Baden

Further Austria or Anterior Austria was the collective name for the old possessions of the Habsburgs in Swabia (south-western Germany), Alsace and in Vorarlberg after the focus of the Habsburgs had moved to Austria. Sometimes the Tyrol was also included in definitions of Further Austria. Until 14th century the northern parts of Switzerland (including Habsburg castle, the seat of the family) were part of Further Austria too.Legend says, that the coat of arms (of Austria) was the result of the siege of Akkon (third cruisade), when the white coat of duke Leopold V was completely red of blood, except the white stripe, his belt left.In reality, the last duke of the house of Babenberg, Friedrich II., der Streitbare (1210-1246) changed his coat of arms around the year 1230. He used this new coat of arms instead of his former coat of arms, an eagle, to show his independence from the Holy Roman Empire.----

The coat of arms of Bavaria

The current coat of arms

The Palatinate of the Rhine was the territory of a palsgrave, the representant of the king in a palatial domain of the crown. Electoral Palatinate included the southern part of Rhineland Palatinate (Pfalz), the northwestern part of Baden Wuerttemberg (Kurpfalz), the eastern part of Saarland (Saar-Pfalz-Kreis) and the northwestern part of Bavaria (Oberpfalz). The count palatinate was one of the seven (later nine) prince electors of the Holy Roman Empire. In 1156 Conrad of Hohenstaufen, brother of emperor Frederick Barbarossa became count palatinate. The old coat of arms of the House of Hohenstaufen, the single lion became coat of arms of the palatinate. By marriage, palatinate came to the houses of Welf and later Wittelsbach. They all kept the coat of arms of Conrad, adding their families coats of arms. [cite web
last=Diemer
first=Klaus
authorlink=
coauthors=
title=Der Pfälzer Löwe
work=
publisher=
date=2007
url=http://www.klaus-diemer.de/019b6194f20a12711/019b6194f21220b43/index.html
format=
doi=
accessdate=2007-10-11
]

The coat of arms of Hohenstaufen

In 11 th century the counts of Kraiburg, a branch of the conts of Sponheim of Rhenish Hesse acquired land in Upper and Lower Bavaria. In 1259, after the death of the last male member of the family, the shire was sold to the dukes of Bavaria. The coat of arms of the family was the "Lion of Sponheim", although the charge was no lion but a panther, a mixture of a dragon and a lion.

The coat of arms of Wittelsbach

The town of Berlin was founded about the year 1200. For some time the town was member of the Hanse league, later capital of the Mark Brandenburg, Prussia and Germany.The first known coat of arms of Berlin of 1253 shows an eagle. The first seal, showing the bear dates from 1280. For centuries, both symbols were combined in different forms. The usual coat of arms, in use in different styles until the year 1920, showed the Prussian eagle in the first field, the eagle of Brandenburg in the second field and the bear in the third field. [cite web
last=Senatsverwaltung für Inneres und Sport
first=
authorlink=
coauthors=
title=Der Bär im Berliner Wappen - ein geschichtlicher Abriss
work=
publisher=
date=
url=http://www.berlin.de/sen/inneres/hoheitszeichen/wappengeschichte.html
format=
doi=
accessdate=2007-10-11
] ----

The coat of arms of Brandenburg

The current coat of arms

The shield of Bremen is Gules, a key Argent. The key represents Saint Peter. Compartment platform Or, Supporters lions rampant Or.

The historical coat of arms of Bremen

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The coat of arms of Hesse

The current coat of arms

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The coat of arms of Lower Saxony

The current coat of arms

*coat of arms of Mecklenburg
*Coat of arms of Pommerania
*Coat of arms of Brandenburg

The coat of arms of the grand duchy of Mecklenburg-Schwerin

The coat of arms of the province of Brandenburg

The coat of arms of the Prussian province of Weltfalen

The coat of arms of Rhineland Palatinate is split by a bent inwards top.
*The first field shows the coat of arms of the prince elector, archbishop of Treves. The charge is a red symmetric cross. It represents the former regions of Treves and Koblenz
*The second field shows the oat of arms of the prince elector, archbishop of Mainz, a silver wheel with six spokes on a red field. It represents Rhenish Hesse.
*The third field (the top), the coat of arms of the prince elector Palatinate represents Palatinate. The black shield is charged with a yellow lion rampant, which's claws and tongue are painted in red.
*The shield is covered by a people's crown of five vine leaves.Landesgesetz über die Hoheitszeichen des Landes Rheinland-Pfalz (Wappen- und Flaggengesetz) in der Fassung vom 7. August 1972 (Fundstelle: GVBl 1972, S. 293) Zuletzt geändert durch Gesetz vom 21.7.2003, GVBl. 2003, S. 167
§ 1 The state's colors are black-red-gold.
§ 2 The state's coat of arms has the form of a round shield. This is split by an ascending sagging peak and shows on the right side on a silver field silver field a continuous red cross, on the left side red field a silver six spokes wheel and in the ascending black peak a redly crowned and reinforced, gold lion. The coat of arms is covered by a golden people's crown (whine leaves)... ...
§ 4 Decisive for the design of the state’s coat of arms and the state’s flag are the patterns, added to this law.
[ [http://rlp.juris.de/rlp/gesamt/WappG_RP.htm Ein Service von rlp online und juris ] ]

The coat of arms of the prince elector, archbishop of Treves

The Palatinate of the Rhine was the territory of a palsgrave, the representant of the king in a palatial domain of the crown. Electoral Palatinate included the southern part of Rhineland Palatinate (Pfalz), the northwestern part of Baden Wuerttemberg (Kurpfalz), the eastern part of Saarland (Saar-Pfalz-Kreis) and the northwestern part of Bavaria (Oberpfalz). The count palatinate was one of the seven (later nine) prince electors of the Holy Roman Empire. In 1156 Conrad of Hohenstaufen, brother of emperor Frederick Barbarossa became count palatinate. The old coat of arms of the House of Hohenstaufen, the single lion became coat of arms of the palatinate. By marriage, palatinate came to the houses of Welf and later Wittelsbach. They all kept the coat of arms of Conrad, adding their families coats of arms. [cite web
last=Diemer
first=Klaus
authorlink=
coauthors=
title=Der Pfälzer Löwe
work=
publisher=
date=2007
url=http://www.klaus-diemer.de/019b6194f20a12711/019b6194f21220b43/index.html
format=
doi=
accessdate=2007-10-11
]

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The coat of arms of Saarland

The current coat of arms

The diocese of Treves consisted of territories on the left side of the Rhine on both sides of river Moselle from the northern Saarland till Koblenz and on the right side along river Lahn till Montabaur and Limburg. It is a foundation of the third century. Since 6th century it was an archdiocese (with the dioceses of Metz Toul and Verdun). Since 902, the archbishops began to gain the rule on important parts of their diocese. In 1198, the archbishops became prince electors and arch-chancellors of Burgundy. In 1794, the territories on the left side of the Rhine were occupied by French forces. In 1803 the territories on the right side of the Rhine were lost too. Since then the Archbishops/Bishops were only spiritual leaders of their diocese. Most of the bishops used the diocese's coat of arms for the first and third field of their personal coat of arms, using the second and forth field for their family's coat of arms.

The coat of arms of the prince elector Palatinate

The shield shows a barry of 10, sable and or, crancelin vert in bend.

Legal base is a law of 1991.Law relating to the coat-of-arms of the Free State of Saxony Of 18 November 1991(Saxon Law and Official Gazette 1991, p. 383-385)

The Saxon State Parliament has passed on 25th October 1991 the following law:

§ 1(1) The lesser coat-of-arms of the Free State of Saxony shows an escutcheon bendy of nine pieces black and gold, a green rue-crown bendwise.(2) A greater coat-of-arms of the Free State of Saxony can be determined by a special law.

§ 2For the rendering of the coat-of-arms the patterns, which are attached to this law as appendix, are authoritative. The coloured patterns are deposited in the Main Public Record Office of Saxony.

§ 3The regulations necessary for the implementation of this law are issued by the State Government. It can pass on this authority.

§ 4This law comes into force the day after its proclamation.

The preceding law is executed herewith and is to be proclaimed.

Dresden, 18th November 1991

The Minister PresidentProf. Dr. Kurt Biedenkopf

The State Minister of JusticeSteffen Heitmann [ [http://fotw.net/FLAGS/de-sn_lx.html Flag Legislation (Saxony, Germany) ] ]

The coat of arms of the electorate of Saxony

The coat of arms of the county of Anhalt

Coat of arms of the Danish monarch

The state of Thuringia was created in 1920 by uniting the seven Thuringian counties Saxony-Weimar-Eisenach, Saxony-Meiningen, Saxony-Gotha, Saxony-Altenburg, Reuß, Schwarzburg-Sondershausen and Schwarzburg-Rudolstadt. The northern part of today's Thuringia was part of Prussia and therefore not represented in this coat of arms. Inspired by the American flag (by featuring one star for each of its counties), the shield is "gules, seven mullets of six points agent". The coat of arms was used until 1933, when the NSDAP government created a new coat of arms.

The coat of arms of the landgraves of Thuringia

In 1040, the house of the Ludowinger from Upper Franconia, gained rule over territories in the north of Thuringia, which then were part of the dukedom of Saxony. The following generations of the house gained control of Thuringia and northern Hesse and became counts palatine of Saxony. In 1137 the Margraves became Landgraves, a position comparable to a duke. Now their rule was immediate to the Empire. In 1247 the Ludowingers vanished. Their rule in Thuringia was succeeded by the Saxon house of Wettin. The arms, used by Landgrave Conrad in 13th century, is "azure, a crowned lion rampant barry of eight argent and gules, crown and claws or".

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References


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