The coat of arms and flag of Iceland: a brief history

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Iceland originally settled by immigrants from Norway.On the island they fled opponents of the then King of Norway Harald, unwilling to submit to his autocratic rule.Populating the country, settlers maintained their public foundations, formed in the "pre-state period."All issues can be resolved within the national assembly or tribal community.Therefore, while the country has had no central control, and therefore there was no need for such symbols of state power, as the coat of arms and the flag of Iceland.This form of government existed before the beginning of the XIII century, when Iceland internally recognized as the supreme authority, first to Norway and then the Danish king.

first mention of Heraldry refer to the Middle Ages.Then they were a personal coat of arms granted to eligible Icelandic knights and orders, which was full of the then Iceland.The coat of arms and flag usually contain images of animals (falcons, polar bears, etc.), spirits that are believed patronized knights.

At the same time appeared heraldic elements present on the coat of arms of the modern state, namely schitonositeli-spirits, guardians of the whole of Iceland: a giant bird, a bull, a dragon.

first coat of arms of Iceland

Presumably the first official coat of arms of Iceland dated to 1265-1285 years.The atlases heraldic emblem of the time of King of Iceland, and in fact one of the emblems of the Norwegian monarch, which Icelanders swore allegiance.The coat of arms is a scarlet lion with battle ax on his shield.Also to his rank as a symbol of what was then modified and Norway with the replacement color to the opposite.What is the flag of Iceland was in this historical period, it is not reliably established.Belonging to the characters found in Iceland is not exactly proved and causes controversy among historians and heraldry.

Cod on the arms of Iceland

Presumably the first to use the image on their stamps as a symbol of Iceland's cod began to merchants trading and have their businesses in the State.The first image is found on the shield on the manuscript, relating to 1360, and later it was used as an emblem of all medieval documents.Use a picture as the flag of Iceland cod or not, historians are now unknown.

fish was displayed on a personal print of the Danish King, the governor intended to Iceland.One of these silver prints depicting the crown and cod on display at the National Museum of Iceland.

use this fish as a national symbol in a time of had a good reason.Cod fishing was the main export commodity and, and its appearance on the arms and seals looks quite reasonable.On the Danish royal seal a symbol of Iceland lasted until the first half of the 19th century, later it was replaced by the image of a falcon.

Coat Icelandic kingdom

in October 1903 by the decree of the King of Denmark has become the emblem of a falcon on a blue background.Residents saw him as a national symbol more appropriate than the headless fish.This proud bird was applied and the Royal flag of Iceland.At the same time it was established the highest state award - the Order of the Falcon.

Icelandic Republic

In 1940, Nazi Germany occupied Denmark in full.At the end of the war the troops Iceland took the Anglo-American coalition and the National Council held a referendum in June 1944, was proclaimed independent Republic of Iceland.

It was decided to give up the crown on the state emblem, but keep the basic elements such as shield and spirits Supporters.As the base was chosen as the emblem plate of volcanic basalt.

Interesting fact: when discussing options for a new coat of arms of the republic authorities have asked the advice of a professional heraldry Vatican.But they were so busy developing personal coat of arms for the Cardinals and Bishops, which missed a chance to create a symbol for the whole country.

national flag

«Kvitblaun" (ISL. Hvítbláinn, which means "white-blue") was the first national flag is a rectangle with a dark blue background and white cross.The right to have its flag country was confirmed by a decree of the King of Denmark November 22, 1913, and already 19 June 1915 the supreme council (Althing) has approved a law that defines the look of the flag of Iceland.The white cross was added one more internal, red.The recognition of Denmark's sovereignty within the union occurred in 1918, and February 12, 1919 a decree was approved by the King of the official flag of Iceland.After the declaration of full independence in 1944, a fundamental change of the flag has not happened, but the background color has become darker.Figure reflects the Scandinavian tradition and is derived from the Danish state sign.The red color on it recalled that the country has long been a protectorate of Denmark.White and blue are traditional and are symbols of the Knights of the Silver Falcon.

also colors of the flag associated with the Icelandic landscapes: red - is the fire of volcanoes in Iceland, white - snow, ice, blue - the water of the Atlantic Ocean around the island.

National flag

addition to the national, there is the national flag of Iceland, which is characterized by the presence of the triangular notch at the free end.Length blue fields on the free portion larger than the width of three times.Days obligatory lifting of national and state flags are determined by a special law.