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Wismar Historical Flags (Germany)

City and Lordship of Wismar, Stadt und Herrschaft Wismar

Last modified: 2011-06-13 by
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Hanging Flag 15th Century

[Wismar 15th Century (Germany)] image by Phil Nelson, 20 Feb 2000

Znamierowski 1999 shows several interesting flags of the Port Cities of northern Europe. These are derived from gonfanons, originally red in color. The flags, in a banner form [i.e. hanging flags], were flown from the stern of the vessels, the mast carrying the gonfanon of the colors. One of the final three that Znamierowski 1999 shows is Wismar in the 15th century.
Phil Nelson, 20 Feb 2000


Variants reported 1700 and 1750

[Wismar 6-striped 1700 and 1750 (Mecklenburg-Hither Pomerania, Germany)] image by Jaume Ollé

Six-striped red and white.
Norman Martin, 3 Mar 1998

[Wismar 5-striped 1700 and 1750 (Mecklenburg-Hither Pomerania, Germany)] image by Jaume Ollé

Five striped red and white.
Norman Martin, 3 Mar 1998


Variant reported 1842, 1848 and 1862

[Wismar 6-striped 1842, 1848 and 1862 (Mecklenburg-Hither Pomerania, Germany)] image by Jaume Ollé

Six striped white and red.
Norman Martin, 3 Mar 1998

An article by Mattern and Neubecker (in Kleeblatt, sometime later than 1985) says the 6 striped flag is mentioned in correspondence of the Dutch Consul dated 10 September 1834. The article also says the flag is shown in the literature frequently as red and white, but is shown as white and red in "more reliable sources".
Norman Martin, 28 Sep 2000


20th Century

[Wismar 11-striped (Mecklenburg-Hither Pomerania, Germany)] image by Jorge Candeias

Eleven striped red and white.
Norman Martin, 3 Mar 1998


Reported c.1960-1985 flag

[Wismar 12-striped c.1960-1985 (Mecklenburg-Hither Pomerania, Germany)] image by Jorge Candeias

Twelve stripes, white and red, counterstriped near the hoist as in Bremen flags.
Norman Martin, 3 Mar 1998

The same article by Mattern and Neubecker (in Kleeblatt, sometime later than 1985) mentions these two flags, the former with the notation "Flag of Wismar as long (zur lange Zeit) flown; this originally existed as 3 white and 3 red stripes" and the latter with "Flag of Wismar as flown by many Wismar ships during the last 25 years, but never legally recognized". Presumably the 25 year reference would mean that its use has been noted starting the 1960s. I cannot think of any historical or political reason why a Bremen-like flag would start being used in the middle of the DDR period.
Norman Martin, 28 Sep 2000


Pennants 19th Century

[Wismar pennant 19th century (Mecklenburg-Hither Pomerania, Germany)] image by Jaume Ollé

[Wismar pennant 19th century (Mecklenburg-Hither Pomerania, Germany)] image by Jorge Candeias

Wismar: pennants in XIX century ships.
Jaume Ollé, 13 Jun 1998


Hansa city of Wismar 1358

[Hansa city of Wismar 1358] image by Klaus-Michael Schneider, 24 Mar 2009

Wismar 1358: I found in Schabbelhaus museum a painting of Paul Wallat, made 1907. It shows the capture of Danish pirate Peter Derne on 2 July 1358.
The painting shows a Wismarian battleship with the flag hoisted upon the stern and a small rowing boat, following the battleship with flag topped by a streamer stuck upon the stern.
Flag 1358: It is a 7-stripes flag with alternating horizontal white and red stripes and a small stripe at the hoist in inverted colours.
Streamer: It is a yellow streamer with a black Latin cross at the hoist.
Source: photo taken on 22 August 2008 in Schabbelhaus museum, Wismar
Klaus-Michael Schneider, 24 Mar 2009


Streamer 1358

[Streamer 1358] image by Klaus-Michael Schneider, 24 Mar 2009

Streamer: It is a yellow streamer with a black Latin cross at the hoist.
Source: photo taken on 22 August 2008 in Schabbelhaus museum, Wismar
Klaus-Michael Schneider, 24 Mar 2009


Wismar Hansa pennant

[Wismar Hansa pennant] image by Klaus-Michael Schneider, 9 Jan 2007

Hansa pennant: It is a horizontal 4-stripes white over red over white over red pennant. According to Paschke I'll date the flag before 1700. I believe in the existence of that pennant, because it occurs in the current coat of arms, which is based on an old seal and according to Paschke there existed an equal flag version before 1700. I could see variants of that pennant in various places in the city, being e.g. part of a company flag and depicted on the Wassertor and the old school-building.
Klaus-Michael Schneider, 9 Jan 2007


Wismar before 1700

[Wismar before 1700] image by Klaus-Michael Schneider, 15 Oct 2007

Wismar before 1700: The flag has 4 equal horizontal stripes. The stripes are white(FIAV-code W) over red over white over red. There also existed an equal pennant, which can be seen on the seal of the city. (ed.note: pennant already published on FOTW-page about Wismar)
Source: Poster entitled: "Die geschichtliche Entwicklung der als deutsche Nationalflaggen auf See gefahrenen und von den seefahrenden Nationen anerkannten deutschen Kriegs- und Handelsflaggen", engl: "The historical evolution of those German national flags used on ships and recognized as German war flags or merchant flags by the naval nations", edited by Deutsches Schifffahrtsmuseum Bremerhaven, 1981, based on an original version of Kapitän zur See a.D. Karl SCHULTZ, all flags on the poster are painted by E. PASCHKE.
Klaus-Michael Schneider, 15 Oct 2007


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