This page is part of © FOTW Flags Of The World website

Ceuta (Spain)

Autonomous City of Ceuta, Ciudad Autónoma de Ceuta

Last modified: 2023-07-03 by
Keywords: ceuta | spain | enclave | coat of arms | portugal | castle | lion | pillars of hercules | plaza de soberanía | gironny | st. vincent |
Links: FOTW homepage | search | disclaimer and copyright | write us | mirrors

[Ceuta (Spain)] 2:3
by António Martins

See also:

Other sites:


Spain still owns Ceuta and Melilla, two enclaves in North Africa, as well as some tiny islands in the Mediterranean [the so-called Plazas de Soberanía en el Norte de África]. Spain decided in 1995 to give the status of Autonomous Community to those two territories, creating tension with Morocco who wants to take these over.

Pascal Vagnat, 22 February 1996

Ceuta is a small Spanish possesion in North Africa, facing Gibraltar.

António Martins, 18 June 1997

Ceuta was the first or one of the first conquests in the very beginning of the Portuguese expansion (1415). It remained Portuguese for over two centuries, having been lost to Spain in 1640, after the Restoration, the recovery of Portuguese independence. Even during the period of Philippine domination (1580-1640) [Kings Phillip II, III and IV], Ceuta was formally part of the Kingdom of Portugal.

Jorge Candeias, 19 July 1998


The flag of Ceuta is a gironny of 8 black and white with the arms of Portugal in an escutcheon. The flag of Ceuta is similar to many town flags in Portugal, reminding the fact that Ceuta was formerly a Portuguese possession.

Ilídio Rafael, 10 May 1996

The flag, black over white gironny (exactly like the Lisbon flag), shows the Portuguese heritage, since Ceuta was Portuguese territory from 1430 up to 1640 when Spain kept it along with Equatorial Guinea etc.

António Martins, 18 June 1997

The coat of arms is not precisely identical to the Portuguese, since the bordure is charged with towers and not castles, and these are arranged 2+2+2+1, instead of 3+2+2. Naturally, this does not override the relationship between both flags, but rather illustrates the diverging path of a pattern nowadays to be followed strictly, but based on a particular instance from a time where heraldic accuracy was much more loose than today...

António Martins, 15 August 1999

The first flag flown in Ceuta by the Portuguese troops, when they conquered the city to the moors in 1415, was the flag of the city of Lisbon (also called the flag of St. Vincent for the patron saint of the city). To celebrate this, the flag of Ceuta became the same as that of Lisbon (gyronny white and black).

The coat-of-arms of Ceuta is that of Portugal with a small difference: the seventh castle is on the bottom and not on the centre top of the bordure of the shield. This follows an ancient habit of some portuguese cities and towns (specially those in isolated places like the borders or overseas) to adopt the coat-of-arms of Portugal as their own, with differences that may appear within the shield (like in the case of Ceuta) or in the outside ornaments (for example the former coat-of-arms of Macau). Another reason for the adoption of the portuguese coat-of-arms (with that small difference) as that of Ceuta is the simbolic importance that the city had for Portugal since it was the first overseas conquest of the nation and it marked the beginning of worldwide portuguese sea expansion.

Like in portuguese cities, in the present there are two official versions for the flag of Ceuta, one with the city coat-of-arms in the centre of the gyronny field and another without it. Both versions can be seen flying in several places of the city.

José J. Xambre Sobral, 23 August 2000

Flag Variant

[Ceuta (Spain), flag variant] 2:3
by António Martins

  Red dog casino