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Hyères (Municipality, Var, France)

Last modified: 2002-07-20 by ivan sache
Keywords: var | hyeres | palm tree |
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[Flag of Hyeres]by Ivan Sache

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Description of the flag

Hyères is a city of ca. 40,000 inhabitants.

Hyères is the most ancien and southern (43°07' N) touristic resort of the French Riviera (Côte d'Azur).
The first colony in the area was established on the Mediterranean seashore by the Greeks from Marseilles as Olbia, later renamed by the Romans Villa Pomponiana.
In the Middle Ages, the coast was abandonned and the city was rebuilt around a castle on one of the surrounding hills (therefore the center of the modern city is not located directly on the sea shore). The city was powerful because of its salterns and port, in which the king of France Saint-Louis (Louis IX) landed in 1254 on his way back from the 7th Crusade.
The city was later under control of the counts of Provence, until incorporation of Provence to France in 1486. The castle was demolished by order of king of France Louis XIII in 1620, and Hyères was progressively supplanted by the neighbouring city of Toulon.
In the XIXth century, Hyères was one of the prefered English summer vacation resort. The city moved back to the beaches only in the XXth century.

The poetess Anna de Noailles (1876-1933) owned in Hyères the Château Saint-Bernard, built by the architect Rob Mallet-Stevens (1886-1945) in which the coloured artistic society of the early XXth century met.

The plains around Hyères are covered with orchards (especially peach trees) and vineyards. Hyères is also famous for the production and exportation of ornemental flowers and plam-trees. The city seems to have recently added -les-Palmiers (the palm-trees) to its name. The scenic, narrow Giens peninsula and the islands of Porquerolles, Port-Cros and Levant (collectively known as Hyères Islands or Golden Islands) also belong to the municipality of Hyeres.

Hyères owns a national velodrome where some of the famous French track cyclists (e.g. Felicia Ballangé) train.

The flag, made of the municipal logo on a night blue field, flies on most traffic circles of the city. The logo shows a stylized white palm-tree on an orange fuzzy background, and the full name of the city in white is added below. I guess the colours should symbolize the sea and the beaches.

Ivan Sache, 5 January 2001

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