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Crimea Autonomous Republic (Ukraine)

Autonomous Republic of the Krym

Last modified: 2003-08-16 by dov gutterman
Keywords: crimea | ukraine | krym |
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by Antonio Martins ,12 September 1999

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The Autonomous Republic

Capital: Simferopil' (Soviet era name: Simferopolh). historical name: Taurida; transfered from RSFSR to Ukr.SSR in 19 Febuary 1954. Today is the only Ukrainian autonomous republic.
Antonio Martins , 10 July 1999

According to "Maliy Atlas SSSR" , the name of this oblast was already Crimea in soviet times (Krymskaya oblast').
Jorge Candeias , 11 July 1999

In Soviet Union, while republics and autonomous districts (formerly, national districts) had their own names, most regions and territories were named after the capital's name (a situation that remains in Russia). There were some exceptions, and Crimea (Krym) was one of them;
it is currently an Autonomous Republic ; in fact it is the only "autonomous" subdivision of current Ukraine. Interestingly enough, in soviet times it was not "autonomous", being just "Region Crimea" (Krymskaa^ oblasth).
Antonio Martins, 12 July 1999

The Official flag

The televised opening of the Crimean Parliament showed a white flag, with a blue band at the top and a red at the bottom (proportions 1:5:1).
Jaume Olle'

From <>:
"In September 24, 1992 the session of the Supreme Rada approved a flag: a rectangular white canvas with a ratio of the sides 1:2. In the top there is dark blue and below there is red stripe with a width of 1/6 from a width of the flag."
Dov Gutterman, 18 July 1999

Dark blue? certainly, but in the image is light blue.
Jaume Olle', 18 July 1999

Since Ukranian has two (or even three) words for blue, what is described as "dark blue" may be something else. The Crimean flag might be a special case among all the rest (as Crimea is a special case among ukranian subdivisions, anyway...). The flag is one of many variations used since 1991 and it is an obvious variation of the Russian flag theme: After the deportation of the Crimean Tatars, the region was settled mainly by russians -- the very attachment of Crimea to Ukraine, although geographically logical, was not a peaceful decision and even today is a a reason for local unrest. I wouldn't be surprised if the Crimean flag is, like the Russian flag legally prescribed to be "blue" (sinii~), but in practice made in a wide range of shades, from sky blue to the darkest blue.
Antonio Martins, 19 July 1999

In his artcile about the Crimean flag Wim Schuurman writes in Vexilla Nostra no. 211 (July-August 1997), page 83: "Article 1 of the law on the state flag of the Crimean republic clearly states that the blue stripe must be dark of shade".
Mark Sensen, 21 July 1999

I'm afraid that we have a translation problem here, again. In russian (and most certainly in ukranian, too -- but Crimea is mostely russian speaking, anyway) there are two words for blue: "sinii~" and "goluboi~". The second is translatable as "sky blue" or "light blue", but that doesn't mean that the first is necessarily "dark blue". In fact, the correct translation would be plain "blue", since "goluboi~" is used to describe a very specific shade, while "sinii~" cover a much wider shade range than the english "dark blue". As a mewtter of fact, only a few national flags (Botswana, Argentina or the Bahamas) are said by russians to be "goluboi~".
Thats said, I'd believe that the law on the state flag of the Crimean republic clearly states that the blue stripe must be dark of shade if the original text of the law specifies "temne sinii~" ("dark blue"), either in russian or in ukranian. An english translation stating "dark blue" might just be a poor translation of normal "sinii~".
Antonio Martins, 21 July 1999

Is it possible that the Ukrainian or Russian text could say "Temne goluboi" ? Although "dark lightblue"  certainly sounds oxymoronic in English, that doesn't mean the concept is necessarily so in another language (and the color in the image with the original message actually could fit such a description).
Ned Smith, 22 July 1999

It sure could be, but it is not. "temne goluboi~" sounds defenitely strange, almost like "dark white" or something like that. As I said yesterday, the difference between "sinii~" and "goluboi~" is not "dark blue" / "light blue", but rather "simple, normal] blue" / "special light blue". It's really like spanish "azur" / "celeste". So, saying "temne goluboi~" is like saying "flat mountain", a contradiction in terms, an oxymoron.
Let's also note that the Crimean flag and some others are depicted in a normal pole, while the others, all the square ones and most of the rectangular, are hanging from the "gamma" shaped (upside down "L") pole. This seems to be the difference between "flag" and "gonfalon", while I mantain my doubt about the correction of this term.
Antonio Martins, 22 July 1999

This flag is listed under number 98 at the chart "Flags of Aspirant Peoples" [asp] as: "Krim (Russians) - Krimean peninsula.
Ivan Sache, 16 September 1999

Really the official proportions are - 1:4:1, ratio - 1:2. The colours are blue-white-red (not dark-blue or light-blue but simple blue (sinii~)).
Victor Lomantsov, 28 December 2000

Coat of Arms

from the site of Ukrainian Heraldry

From the site of Ukrainian Heraldry:
"The modern emblem of the Republic of Krym is confirmed on the 24th of September 1992 by the 9th session of Supreme Rada of the Republic. It is a barangian shield and on it in the gules field is a turned to the right argent griffin holding in its paw an open shell with an azure pearl. From both sides the shield is held by two marble pillars. The top of the shield is the or rising sun. Under the shield you see a blue-and-white-and-red (colors of the state flag of the Republic of Krym) motto ribbon with the words "Prosperity in unity".
The symbolics of the emblems is like this: the barangian shield reminds of the fact the Krym was for a long time on the crossing of the main trade routs . In was are of the key-points of the famous rout from Varagian to Greeks. The gules field of the shield symbolizes heroic and often dramatic history of the peninsula. Griffin is the most often used symbol of the North of the territory by the Black Sea heraldic. It is known as the "emblem" of Khersones and Pantikapei, one can see its portrayal on the old seals, jewelry and buckles of that
time. Griffin is also believed to have security functions. So, together with the pearl symbolizing the Krym as a unique part of the planet, griffin is the defender of the young republic. The azure color of the pearl means the unity of culture, peoples and religions of the Krym. The marble classical pillars reminds of the most ancient colonization which once lived on the territory of the peninsula. The or rising sun symbolizes prosperity and regeneration. The motto "Prosperity in Unity" is the main idea of the multinational Republic of Krym. "
Dov Gutterman, 19 June 2002

The motto is in russian: "PROTSVETANIE V EDINSTVE" (Prosperity in Unity).
Victor Lomantsov, 23 August 2002

Pro Russian Movement

Ownership of the Crimea peninsula has changed repeatedly over the centuries. In 1954, ownership was transferred to Ukraine, although Russians were in a majority. With Ukrainian independence, this became a point of contention; one considerably complicated by the fact that Crimea's ports are the bases for the important
Black Sea fleet. Russians agitating for union with Russia fly a variety of flags, including a white flag with a light blue stripe at the top and a red one at the bottom.
stuart notholt

This flag was later adopted as the flag of the Autonomous Republic of Crimea, see above.
Antonio Martins , 29 July 1999

See also: Variants of the flag