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City of Altena (Märkischer Kreis County, North Rhine-Westphalia, Germany)

Stadt Altena

Last modified: 2002-08-02 by santiago dotor
Keywords: north rhine-westphalia | altena | stadt altena | märkischer kreis county | coat of arms (st catherine) | coat of arms (fess: chequy) |
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[City of Altena (Märkischer Kreis County, North Rhine-Westphalia, Germany)] 3:5
by Stefan Schwoon

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The city of Altena was the seat of the former Altena County until the merger with Lüdenscheid in 1969. It is not known since when the coat of arms is in use. Its design is quite similar to those of Lüdenscheid and Iserlohn, showing the red-white chequered fess of the County of Mark and the local church patron, St. Catherine of Alexandria with her attributes. A date for the adoption of the flag is not known either. Source: Hostert 1979.

The city statutes (Hauptsatzung) prescribe the flag as follows (quoting from Hostert 1979):

Die Stadtflagge ist weiss-rot gleichbreit gestreift, in der Mitte, etwas nach der Stangenseite hin verschoben, befindet sich ein weisses Feld mit dem Stadtwappen, darunter steht in schwarzer Schrift 'Stadt Altena (Westf.)'. Die Höhe des Flaggentuches verhält sich zu seiner Länge wie 3:5.
i.e. the city flag has two equally wide stripes white-red with in the centre, slightly offset to the hoist, a white field with the arms, below it in black lettering 'Stadt Altena (Westf.)', flag proportions 3:5.

Strangely, the first sentence seems to refer to a hanging flag (a banner), the second to a normal flag. The description of the banner coincides with the description found in both Städtebuch 1954 and Stadler 1972. Hostert 1979 shows a both a flag and a banner.

Stefan Schwoon, 25 June 2001

From Ralf Hartemink's International Civic Arms website:

The arms are based on the old seal of the town, known since the 15th century. The chequered fess is the arms of the Counts of (Altena-)Mark, who granted the village some privileges in 1367. The town became a city only in the 18th century. Saint Catherine is the patron saint of the local church, built in 1310.

Literature: Stadler 1964-1972.

Santiago Dotor, 31 July 2002

Hanging Flag


[City of Altena hanging flag (Märkischer Kreis County, North Rhine-Westphalia, Germany)]
by Stefan Schwoon

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