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Historical Flags (Mecklenburg, Germany)

Last modified: 2004-12-29 by
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[Civil Flag 1863/64-1935 (Mecklenburg, Germany)] 2:3 (1863/4-1918) (1921-1935 and 1946-1952)
by Marcus Schmöger
Flag adopted by Mecklenburg-Schwerin 23rd December 1863, by Mecklenburg-Strelitz 4th January 1864, abolished 1935, readopted 1946, abolished 1952, readopted as regional flag 1991



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Presentation

In the 16th and early 17th centuries the region was recurrently divided into two duchies, Mecklenburg-Schwerin (the west) and Mecklenburg-Güstrow (the east). (...) By the Peace of Westphalia (1648) Sweden acquired Wismar and its environs, which it held until 1803. With the extinction of the Güstrow line in 1695, Mecklenburg was again reunited but was then permanently divided by the Treaty of Hamburg (1701). Most of the territory went to Mecklenburg-Schwerin, while Mecklenburg-Strelitz comprised the principality of Ratzeburg in the northwest and the lordship of Stargard in the southeast. (...) The Congress of Viena in 1814-15 recognized them as grand duchies (...). The Nationalsocialist government in 1934 merged the two states into one Land. Source: Encyclopaedia Britannica 1981, vol. VI, p. 742.

Santiago Dotor, 3 October 2000

The house of Mecklenburg was founded by Niklot, prince of the Obotrites, Chizzini and Circipani on the Baltic Sea, who died in 1160. His christian progeny was recognized prince of the Holy Roman Empire in 1170 and duke of Mecklenburg 8 July 1348. On 27 February 1658 the ducal house was divided into two branches: Mecklenburg-Schwerin and Mecklenburg-Strelitz.

Theo van der Zalm, 15 June 2001


Introduction

The traditional flag of Mecklenburg was the blue-yellow-red one, used by both entities. (...) Mecklenburg-Schwerin was a coastal province and a civil ensign was adopted with the colours blue-white-red, which were the colours of Rostock thus with a different origin with respect to the colours of the State flag. So the flag for both Mecklenburgs was the blue-yellow-red (and it always had been so), while Mecklenburg-Schwerin had also a blue-white-red civil ensign which is the flag usually reproduced on old charts and books dealing with maritime flags.

Mario Fabretto (?), 24 August 1998

I do not quite manage to see the difference between the flags of Mecklenburg-Schwerin and Mecklenburg-Strelitz. Most flags appear to refer only to "Mecklenburg" does that mean they were the same for both grand duchies?

Santiago Dotor, 28 September 2000

Well, not exactly. In principle, the Grand Duchies agreed to have the same flags, but seem never to get around to deciding which. Of course Mecklenburg-Strelitz without a seacoast did not need sea flags.

Norman Martin, 28 September 2000

The flag of both Mecklenburg duchies is traditionally made up of the colours blue, yellow and red. The sequence however changed more than once in the past 300 years. In 1813 the duchies used yellow-red-blue. According to Ströhl 1897, p. 89, the colours blue-yellow-red were adopted on 23 December 1863 for Schwerin and on 4 January 1864 for Strelitz.

Mecklenburg-Schwerin however used white instead of yellow for flags on sea by law of 24 March 1855 (Ströhl 1897, p. 86).

Siebmacher 1878 gives therefore (?) blue-white-red for Schwerin and blue-yellow-red for Strelitz.

Theo van der Zalm, 15 June 2001


Civil Flag 1863-1935, 1946-1952 and since 1991

Landesfarben

[Civil Flag 1863/64-1935 (Mecklenburg, Germany)] 2:3
by Marcus Schmöger
Flag adopted by Mecklenburg-Schwerin 23rd December 1863, by Mecklenburg-Strelitz 4th January 1864, abolished 1935, readopted 1946, abolished 1952, readopted as regional flag 1991

Horizontal tricolor blue-yellow-red. Adopted officially by Mecklenburg-Schwerin 23 December 1863, by Mecklenburg-Strelitz 4 January 1864. Used as Landesflagge by both states 1921-1935. Readopted 1946, but abandoned 1952, with the abolition of states in the German Democratic Republic. Readopted as flag of Mecklenburg portion of Mecklenburg-West Pomerania 1991.

Norman Martin, 3 March 1998


Mecklenburg Flags 1918-1935

Znamierowski 1999 labels this flag "Mecklenburg civil flag 1863-1935".

Santiago Dotor, 3 October 2000

[Mecklenburg after 1918:]

Jaume Ollé, 24 August 1998

The history of flags of Mecklenburg is quite complex. After the proclamation of the republic in 1918, Mecklenburg-Schwerin and Mecklenburg-Strelitz became two separate entities, for the first time with different coats of arms. The traditional flag of Mecklenburg was the blue-yellow-red one, used in the past by both entities, and kept in use by both after 1918 (approved 24th May 1923 for Mecklenburg-Strelitz). In 1933 they were unified again. Mecklenburg-Schwerin was a coastal province and, as in the past, a civil ensign was adopted with the colours blue-white-red, which were the colours of Rostock thus with a different origin with respect to the colours of the State flag. So the flag for both Mecklenburgs was the blue-yellow-red (and it always had been so), while Mecklenburg-Schwerin had also a blue-white-red civil ensign (...).

Mario Fabretto (?), 24 August 1998

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