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City of Mainz (Rhineland-Palatinate, Germany)

Stadt Mainz

Last modified: 2023-07-03 by
Keywords: rhineland-palatinate | rheinland-pfalz | mainz | stadt mainz | banner of arms | wheels: 2 (white) | cross: formy (white) |
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[City of Mainz (Rhineland-Palatinate, Germany)] 5:2
by Stefan Schwoon

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A banner version of the arms. The archdiocese of Mainz, an important and widespread territory of medieval Germany, used a single wheel in its arms (this can be found in many county arms). The city uses two wheels, connected by a cross. Source: Staack 1997.

Stefan Schwoon, 28 February 2001

From Ralf Hartemink's International Civic Arms website:

Mainz became a bishopric in 550 and an archbishopric around 800. The archbishops of Mainz also played a major role in the appointment of the new emperor. The bishops owned large possessions in the present states of Rhineland-Palatinate, Hesse and Bavaria. The city was also the capital of the State of Mainz. The State of Mainz also existed until 1803.

The arms with the two wheels combined with a cross, appear at the end of the 13th century in the seal of Bishop Sigfried III. The city started to use the two wheels about 50 years later. Originally the two wheels were placed vertically, but were later placed diagonally. The origin of the wheels is not known, they are probably derived from the arms of the State of Mainz, but it may just as well the other way round. The colours were changed by Napoleon, who added the three bees of a city of the first rank in a chief. As the [Napoleonic] chief had to be red, the colours of the shield had to be changed. In 1811 the bees were removed, but the colours were not restored. Only in 1915 the old colours were restored.

Literature: Stadler 1964-1971, Neubecker 1977 [Dutch edition 1988].

Santiago Dotor, 27 December 2001

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