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Rhine Customs Administration 1805-1806 (France and Germany)

Rheinoktroi, Rheinzollverwaltung

Last modified: 2002-03-29 by santiago dotor
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[Rhine Customs Administration 1805-1806 (France and Germany)]
by Santiago Dotor
Flag adopted 1805, abolished 1806

See also:


Jaume Ollé quoted [from Flaggenmitteilung?]:

"Frankeich und das Heilige Römische Reich wollten 1805 für die gemeinsame Rheinzollverwaltung eine Flagge schaffen, die je zur Hälfte aus den beiderseitigen Reichsfarben bestehen sollte. Man streif[t]e sie dann aber schräg in den Grundfarben des deutschen und des französischen Adlerwappens, Gelb und Bla[u]."
Die acht streife[n] verliefen diagonal von li[n]ks oben nach rechts unten wobei der linke untere Streifen blau und der rechte obere streifen im fliegenden ende gelb war. Quelle: O. Neubecker, Fahnen und Flaggen, Leipzig 1939.
My translation:
France and the Holy Roman Empire wanted to create a flag in 1805 for the common customs administration of the river Rhine, which would consist of both imperial colors. There was a diagonal stripe in the basic colors of the German and French eagle[-bearing]-coats-of-arms: yellow and blue.

The eight stripes were diagonal from the hoist top to the fly bottom; the left bottom stripe was blue and the right top stripe was yellow. Source: O. Neubecker, Fahnen und Flaggen, Leipzig 1939 [i.e. Neubecker 1939a]

Jarig Bakker, 8 December 1999

The field (rather than "basic") colour (Grundfarben) of the French imperial coat-of-arms was blue. So the flag is quite simply bendy of eight Or and Azure.

Santiago Dotor, 13 December 1999

The description and the flag appear on pp. 85-86 of Neubecker 1939a (the description is only the first part quoted above, up to "...Gelb und Blau"). The flag is labelled Rheinoktroi 1805-1806 and appears to be almost exactly a ratio of 2:3. I believe the flag was no longer used after the Holy Roman Empire disappeared in 1806.

Santiago Dotor, 27 March 2001

Oktroi is an old German term for customs. The word came from the French octroyer meaning "(customs) imposed or forced upon". Therefore Rheinoktroi means Rhine Customs.

Jens Pattke, 28 March 2001

In French, octroi specifically refers to a city toll, and is translated in English, in this sense, as octroi, according to Robert-Collins dictionary. A tax had to be paid on several goods, especially foodstuffs, when entering a city (this tax was suppressed in 1948). Octroi was also used to design the administration in charge of the tax and the offices where it was paid. The word comes from the popular Latin auctioridare, with the same root as author, authorize etc.

Ivan Sache, 31 March 2001

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