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Granada Province (Andalusia, Spain)

Last modified: 2013-12-02 by eugene ipavec
Keywords: granada | andalusia | coat of arms: pomegranate | coat of arms: bordure (compony: white-red) | pennant: ogival | text: arabic (golden) |
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[Granada Province (Andalusia, Spain)]
image by Wikipedia User:HansenBCN, 03 Jul 2009

See also:


On 28 August 2008, Ana B. Fernández reports in "Ideal Digital" that the Province of Grenada has "updated" the Provincial flag for legal reasons.

Commissioned in 2005 by the Provincial Government, experts in heraldry have studied the flag to get the symbols adequatly "legalized, registered and protected." The main motivation of the study was to reassert the authority of the local administration. Green was chosen as the dominant colour and will be prescribed by law to prevent inadequate use and plagiarism.

The spokesman of the Provincial Government, José María Aponte, explained that the new design was not a brand new flag but that "modifications, adaptations and corrections have been made to the coat of arms traditionally used for years to represent the institution." The main differences with the original flag adopted in 1969 are the crown, charges and author's licence. The crown was updated to reflect the parliamentary monarchy that created the provincial governments in the XIXth century. The representation of the lions and castles was also updated.

During the investigations, emphasis was put on the green colour, based on "rigor and historic tradition." The green shade shall not be either copied or plagiarized, being "equal to a logotype or a trademark", added Aponte.

The updated flag is the successor of the previous provincial flags. In the 1950s, the process of designing provincial standards was initiated. In 1964, Manuel Parrizas designed a second sketch, which was used from 1969 to 2008, the model of the coat of arms having been approved by the Municipal Council in 2008. The 1969 update, however, was not approved by all the relevant bodies of the time. When the updating process was started in 2005, reports made by commissioned experts Eduardo Molina Fajardo and David Torres Ibáñez, made in 1969 and 1994, respectively, were found.

Aponte says that the official flag of the Provincial Government will be "neither an instrument of struggle nor of exclusion" and that a protocol of use will be set up.

A photograph by Rámon L. Pérez shows the spokesman presenting the model of the updated coat of arms and the updated flag. On the photography, the field of the flag looks dark yellow rather than green, at least much lighter than on the image of the FOTW website.



The flag of the Province of Granada was approved by the Provincial Council on 26 February 2008 and submitted on 3 March 2008 to the General Directorate of Local Administration, which confirmed it by Decree on 10 March 2009, published in the Andalusian official gazette (Boletín Oficial de la Junta de Andalucía, BOJA) No. 61 on 28 March 2008.

The relevant parts of the Decree are the following:

Flag: Rectangular in proportions 2/3, the length – from hoist to fly – one and a half the hoist, of the traditionally used green colour: Pantone 384c, charged in the middle with the private coat of arms of the Government of Granada "en ambas caras."

The symbols should be registered on the Andalusian Register of Local Entities, with their official written description and graphics (as originally submitted, but unfortunately not apprended to the Decree).

Source: BOJA, No. 61, p. 56, 28 Mar 2008 [PDF]

Ivan Sache, 03 Jul 2009

According to the Provincial Government's website, the update of the symbols was officially decided by the Provincial Government on 24 April 2005. The flag was approved by the Provincial Council on 28 February 2008, submitted on 3 March 2008 for registration on the Andalucian Registrary of Local Entities, which was done on 10 March 2008 by the Direction of Local Administration. The registration includes a written description and an image of the flag.

Here the green colour is intemediate between the dark yellow and dark green colours discussed above. It should be considered as the "official" colour.

The same website also shows another photograph of José María Aponte presenting the new flag. While the flag he holds in his hands looks dark yellow, the flag hoisted in the background shows quite clearly the prescribed shade of green.

Coat of Arms

A companion Decree to the Decree on the flag of the Granada Province prescribes the provincial coat of arms.

The coat of arms of the Province of Granada was approved by the Provincial Council on 26 February 2008 and submitted on 3 March 2008 to the General Directorate of Local Administration, which confirmed it by Decree on 10 March 2009, published in the Andalusian official gazette (Boletín Oficial de la Junta de Andalucía, BOJA) No. 60 on 27 March 2008.

The description is already available below.

The symbols should be registered on the Andalusian Register of Local Entities, with their official written description and graphics (as originally submitted, but unfortunately not apprended to the Decree).

Source: BOJA No. 60, p. 55, 27 Mar 2008 [PDF]

[Something unexpected must have happened in the provincial administration. The flag and arms were clearly adopted and submitted at the same date. The Decree on the *coat of arms* must have been a yet unfinished draft of a Decree prescribing the two symbols, since the word "flag" is used in the text instead of "coat of arms." The mistake probably prompted the release of the Decree on the *flag* in the next issue of BOJA.]

Ivan Sache, 04 Jul 2009

The Provincial Government's website describes the modifications made to the coat of arms, with drawings (the updated coat of arms on top and the 1969 coat of arms on bottom). The proposed modifications to the 1969 design are as follows:

  • Crown: The 1969 shield is crowned by the Crown of Isabella the Catholic, which should be replaced by the Royal Spanish crown, restoring the original design of the shield, dated 1878. This update is supported by David Torres Ibáñez, Graduate in Nobility History and Diplomacy: since the monarchy created all the provincial governments by a single Decree, all those entities should have the same crown on their coat of arms, representing the institution that created them.
  • Charges: The 1969 shield was described with "a border of castles and lions, made of quarters separated by right lines," but there is no heraldic description of the towers; accordingly, the author of the shield distorted the towers to fit them into the quarters, which vary in size [the towers in the upper and lower quarters are nearly twice wider than those in the lateral quarters]. This should be corrected and the castles should be identical to those shown on the Spanish constitutional coat of arms.
  • Author's licence: The lions placed in the quarters at the base of the shield should be redesigned to better fit the quarter's shape.

    The updated description of the coat of arms is:

    En campo de plata fileteado de gules, una granada al natural, rajada de gules, tallada y hojada de sinople. Bordura componada de ocho piezas: alternadas; cuatro de plata con un león rampante de gules, linguado de lo mismo y coronado y uñado de oro; cuatro de gules con un castillo de oro, donjonado, almenado, aclarado de azur y mazonado de sable. Filete exterior de sable, cargado con una trenza de plata de dos cabos. Al timbre, corona real cerrada.
    On a field argent fimbriated gules a pomegranate proper "rajada"* gules, slipped and leaved green. The border compony of eight pieces, alternate four pieces argent a lion rampant gules langued of the same crowned and armed or, four pieces gules a castle or with a tower, crenellated, port and windows azure and masoned sable. Fimbriation sable a two-stranded cord argent. The shield crowned by a Royal Crown.

    * lit., "cracked," refering to the crack of the ripe fruit

    History of the Coat of Arms

    The early history of the coat of arms is detailed in the document "Antecedents of the coat of arms," written after the aforementioned expert's reports by Eduardo Molina Fajardo and David Torres Ibáñez.

    • 1836: a Provincial coat of arms is shown for the first time on official documents, as an oval shield, a field argent with two hands shaking each other and supporting a pomegranate proper, "rajada," slipped and leaved of two leaves, surmounted by the Royal Spanish crown and surrounded by the writing "Diputación Provincial de Granada."
    • 1873: following the proclamation of the First Spanish Republic (1873-1874), the Royal crown is replaced by a mural crown, a design that was still used after 1877.
    • 1877-1891: the 1836 coat of arms might have been used, according to Torres Ibáñez.
    • 1891: the coat of arms is chasuble-shaped with wrapped borders, the field is gules with two hands shaking each other, per fess, proper, surmounted by a pomegranate proper, "rajada" gules, supported, slipped and leaved. The shield is surrounded by the writing "Diputación Provincial de Granada." This coat of arms was used on provincial documents until 1906. -1906-1959: The coat of arms used in 1906-1931 and 1939-1959 has an oval shield with a field argent and a pomegranate proper, "rajada" supported, slipped and leaved, surmounted by the Royal Spanish crown.
    • 1914: Torres Ibáñez reports a "foreign model of short-lived use." The shield is per pale, 1. Azure a pomegranate proper, "rajada" gules, supported, slipped and leaved vert, 2. Gules two hands shaking each other proper per fess. The shield surmounted by a Royal crown open.
    • 1931-1939: The shield is oval with the field argent and a pomegranate proper, "rajada," supported, slipped and leaved, and surmounted by a mural crown.
    • February 1959: Manuel Parrizas Carrasco presents a proposal made of heraldic pieces: in the middle the traditional shield of Grenada, surrounded by the municipal shields of Guadix, Baza, Huescar, Albuñol, Iznalloz, Ugijar, Loja, Montefrio, Santa Fe, Orgiva and Alhama. The shield surrounded by an orle of laurel branches and crowned by leaves and volutes argent.
    • 31 July 1959: Seeking approval of the design by the Provincial Government, the administration submits the proposal to the Academies of History and Arts.
    • 9 November 1959: The Royal Academy of History of Madrid rejects the proposal because of the "confuse piling of pieces and charges."
    • 30 November 1959: The Government maintains the proposal and submits it to the Ministry of Government.
    • 4 May 1961: The General Direction recommends a revision of the proposal following the recommendations of the Royal Academy of History.
    • 22 June 1964: Mr. Cachazo proposes a design made of eight open pomegranates placed on three ranks, but the design is not officialy approved. Manuel Parrizas submits a new proposal with a single pomegranate and a border with castles and lions.
    • 30 June 1964: Parrizas' proposal is adopted by the Provincial Government and submitted to the Royal Academy of History of Madrid.


    • Antecedentes, PDF document with 10 figures, undated, uncredited
    • Eduardo Molina Fajardo, "Informe sobre el escudo de la Excelentísima Diputación Provincial," Granada, 1969
    • David Torres Ibáñez, "La heráldica de la Diputación Provincial de Granada. Estudio, antecedentes y propuestas." Granada, 2004

    Ivan Sache, 21 Oct 2008

    According to the Manual del Estado Español (Handbook of the Spanish State, Spanish text only) by Editorial Lama:

    • historical flag [meaning there is no known adoption date], "De color verde cinc con el escudo heráldico privativo de la provincia en el centro" i.e. zinc green with the province's exclusive coat-of-arms in the center;
    • coat-of-arms adopted on 31st May 1969 by the Diputación Provincial (provincial council): Una granada en campo de plata, en su color, abierta y con sus granos en gules, enmarcada por una bordura de castillos y leones, formando cantones separados por líneas rectas, rematado por la corona de la Reina Isabel la Católica y al pie una cinta con la inscripción "Excma. Diputación Provincial de Granada."

    Pascal Vagnat, 16 Jul 1999

    The description of the coat of arms can be translated as:

    On a field argent a pomegranate proper, open and seeded gules, a border of castles and lions, made of quarters separated by right lines, surmounted by the crown of Queen Isabella the Catholic and surmonting a scroll with the writing "Excma. Diputación Provincial de Granada (Excelentissime Provincial Government of Granada).

    "Granada" means "pomegranate" in Spanish, the pomegranate tree (Punica granatum L.) being called "granado." The name comes from Latin "granatus," with grains, while the tree was called in classic Latin "Malus punicum" or "Malus granatum," "Malus" being the apple-tree (hence the origin of "pomegranate" and the German word "Granatapfel"). The origin of the name of the town of Granada is disputed, but might well have been derived from the name of the fruit.

    Source: www.nueva-acropolis.es

    Ivan Sache, 21 Oct 2008

    Variant Depiction

    [Granada Province (Andalusia, Spain)]
    image by Jens Pattke

    The source for Jens Pattke's image is Ministerio para las Administraciones Públicas 1992.

    Falko Schmidt, 14 Jan 2002

    Granada, Late 14th Century

    As Shown In 2005 Illustrated Transcription [f0f05]
    [Granada in the Book of All Kingdoms (Spain, Late 14th Century)]
    image by Eugene Ipavec, 08 Apr 2009
    As Shown In Siegels Flag Chart [sig12]
    [Granada in the Book of All Kingdoms (Spain, Late 14th Century)]
    image by Eugene Ipavec, 08 Apr 2009

    The 23rd flag mentioned and illustrated in the Book of All Kingdoms [f0fXX] is attributed to Granada. This as depicted in the 2005 Spanish illustrated transcription [f0f05], a red flag yellow Arabic letters, in the ogival default shape of this source. The exact shape of the letters, as depicted in [f0f05], seems to be bogus, or at least severely misshapen. (This flag differs in detail from both #82 (Mecca / Arabia) and #83 (Socotra), though they all are red with yellow Arabic letters.)

    The anonymous author of [f0fXX] describes the flag thusly:

    «E las señales d'este rey son un pendón bermejo con letras de oro arávigas como las traía Mahomad su profeta, e son estas que se siguen.»
    "And the sign of this king are a red pendon with golden arabic letters like those sported by Mahomad his profet (sic!) and which are those which follow."

    No mention of a flag like this on the Historical Flags of Andalusia page, but on the other hand we seem to have no information about Hispanic Arab flags at all.

    António Martins-Tuválkin, 14 Nov 2007

    Both National Geographic 1917 (p. 390) and the Hakluyt Society version of the text (p. 14) indicate that the lettering is recorded in error by the friar and should represent "No conqueror but God" in Arabic.

    Phil Nelson, 17 Nov 2007

    The abovementioned scan include the supposedly original text in Arabic and Latin transliteration in the footnote on the page numbered 14. The transliteration reads "Wa il galib ill Allah."

    Željko Heimer, 19 Nov 2007

    From the Hakluyt edition [e9s12], in a note in p.14 subscribed by C.R.M.: "و لا جالب للا الله" (spelled "u la jalb lla allh"). Probably the flag our friar sought to depict included this writing in full, with all vowel marks, as the extra dots on the image seem to imply (markless writing has only two dots, in "b" and "j;" the flag shows a third dot, under the "la" ligature, and two squiggles on the fly tip).

    That is well above my limited abilities, but we get the idea that the original flag had the usual intrincate calligraphic features one might expect.

    António Martins-Tuválkin, 20 Nov 2007

    A red ogival pennant with a golden Arab inscription, as shown in Siegels Flag Chart [sig12], flagchart 17, row 3, column 2; based on "Conocimiento de todos los reinos" [f0fXX]

    Klaus-Michael Schneider, 12 Sep 2008

    The Emirate of Granada existed between 1228 and 1492, and was a vassal of Castile.

    Esteban Rivera, 27 Mar 2010

    Putative Flag of the "Historic Territory of Granada" (Provinces of Jaén, Granada, and Almería)

    [Historic Territory of Granada (Provinces
of Jaén, Granada, and Almería, Spain)]
    image by Blas Delgado, Oct 26 2005

    Historic Territory of Granada (Provinces of Jaén, Granada, and Almería) The following is an explanation from a website collaboration:

    the Penibetic flag (from Penibetic Mountain Range), with the colors of Almería (white with the Red Cross of Saint George), Jaén (purple) and Granada (green), and the white stripe of the snows of its land.

    Blas Delgado, Oct 26 2005

    Where did you find such an invention, Blas? It must be some kind of private webpage. I had never before seen not only such a flag but such a designation "Historic Territory of Granada." The former (pre-1492) kingdom of Granada had Moorish flags (crescents, stars, Arab inscriptions in various colours and fields – red, white, black) and the only post-1492 representation of such territory was and is the pomegranate in the national arms.

    Santiago Dotor, Oct 27 2005

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