Last modified: 2002-11-09 by jarig bakker
Keywords: maputo | lourenco marques |
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Here are the old flags of Maputo, then Lourenço Marques, the
first one, green, before 1962, and then (until 1975) in the classic portuguesse
Jaume Ollé, 19 Oct 2002
Are you sure that the CoA is correct? On Ralf
Hartemink's page the top quarter is gold/yellow, not red. The sails
are red, not white. Moreover the motto on the banderol below the CoA is
virtually illegible, almost Arabic...
There seem to be two different mottos on the CoA, for the first image something like Cidade de Lourenço Marques, for the second image a similar motto in quite different lettering, whereas on Ralf's site it reads: DESCOBERTA SOBERANIA PORTUGUESA. Is Ralf's motto wrong?
Jarig Bakker, 21 Oct 2002
I'm not the author of this images. They were made by the Spanish vexillologist
and editor of Gaceta de Banderas Jorge Hurtado, generally well informed
and accurate. These images came from a serie of local colonial flags researched
by the Catalan vexillologist Adolfo Duran and published in Banderas. I
will try to check it.
Jaume Ollé, 22 Oct 2002
I indeed remember the motto "DESCOBERTA E SOBERANIA PORTUGUESA" ("Portuguese
Discovery and Ownship") applied to Lourenço Marques, though it may
later have been changed to the more standard "Cidade de Lourenço
A note on portuguese colonial subnational flags, or rather the arms thereon, is that they come in two types: Older ones, usually created unofficially by local elites and brought into use before the normalization of portuguese subnational heraldry in the 1930s (which officialized these much more often that it did to its metropolitan equivalents); and much later ones, created by official state heralds and attributed in the 1940s and later to some of the colonial cities and towns.
The second type is usually much better designed with real "reborn" heraldry (massive British influence, I'd say), with clear esthetical and theoretical improvement when compared with the metropolitan arms created a couple of decades before. (One of these traits, BTW, is the frequent use of real mottoes, not of toponyms, on the motto scroll.)
The first type (to which the ams of Lourenço Marques belong) were usually pieces of tacky amateurish heraldry, and I wouldn't be surprised to see them changed at whim at least on details such as colors.
Perhaps the two images by Jorge Hurtado, after and before the normalization (hinted by the swap of a monocolored background to a gyronny one) use incorrectly the same arms? Perhaps the arms before1930 are as shown in Ralf's Hartemink site?
As for the motto Portuguese Discovery and Ownship it stresses Portuguese sovereignty over the city - not against any native claims (towards whom the argument "discovery" would be risible, even in the time when it was created) but against British South Africa: Maputo has an excellent deep water harbour and lies interestingly near to the ZA-MZ border. For that reason the provincial capital was put there (most assymetrically situated, compared to, f.i., Beira), away from the namesake Mozambique Island in the north.
António Matins-Tuválkin, 28 Oct 2002