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Flag Variants in an Army Order of 30th April 1940 (Spain)

Last modified: 2005-02-12 by
Keywords: coat of arms: quartered (counterquartered) | coat of arms: quartered (castle: yellow) | coat of arms: quartered (lion: red) | coat of arms: supporter (eagle: black) | law |
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Introduction

An Order of the Ministry of the Army dated 30th April 1940 established the shape and dimensions of Army flags, including two variants of the state and war flag and ensign. The first flag is described thus:

Las Banderas para cuarteles y demás edificios militares, así como para los centros oficiales, serán de un tejido fuerte de lana o algodón, rectangulares, y tendrán 3,75 m. de largo por 2,70 m. de ancho, y llevarán en el centro de la faja amarilla el Escudo Nacional, pudiendo ser éste superpuesto o estampado. El ancho de las Banderas [sic, should be 'bandas'] será: de un metro la central y 85 cm. cada una de las otras dos; el Escudo tendrá una altura de 90 cm. y anchura proporcionada.

Flags for barracks and other military buildings, as well as official centres, shall be made in a strong wool or cotton material, rectangular, and shall be 3.75 m long and 2.70 m wide, and bear in the middle of the yellow stripe the National Arms, which may be superimposed or printed. The width of the stripes shall be of one metre the middle one and 85 cm each of the other two; the Arms shall be 90 cm high and a proportionate width.

This flag is anomalous in that it has a ratio of 18:25 and the three horizontal stripes do not follow the usual proportions 1:2:1. Also, the coat-of-arms is centred. It should be classified as a state and war flag ().

The second flag is described as follows:

En los fuertes y castillos, y con objeto de que estas Banderas puedan ser vistas a una gran distancia, tendrán 5 m. de longitud por 3,60 de anchura. El ancho de las bandas será de 1,60 metros la central y de un metro cada una de las otras dos. La altura del Escudo será de 1,5 metros, y anchura proporcionada.

In forts and castles, and so that these Flags can be seen at great distance, they shall be 5 m long and 3.60 m wide. The width of the stripes shall be 1.60 the middle one and one metre each of the other two. The height of the Coat-of-Arms shall be 1.5 metres and a proportionate width.

This flag again has a ratio of 18:25, again the stripes do not follow 1:2:1 proportions, and again the coat-of-arms is centred. It should be classified as a war flag ().

Contribution by Luis Miguel Arias, 1 February 2002
translations by Santiago Dotor, 14 September 2004

The 1940 Order stated that for the first category of flags, the central (yellow) stripe would be 1 m (bearing a 1 m high arms) and the two red stripes 0.85 m each. This would imply that the stripes on that flag would not keep the 1+2+1 ratio, but 17+20+17, approx. 6+7+6. For the second category, those stripes would be 1.6 m (bearing a 1.5 m high arms) and 1 m respectively, which would imply a stripe ratio of 5+8+5.

This 1940 Order, quite nonsensical in appearance, seems to have followed actual practice as respects to dimensions.

Luis Miguel Arias, translated by Santiago Dotor, 17 April 2002


The Non-existent 1940 Coat-of-Arms

Some authors for instance Calvo and Grávalos 1983 mention a 1940 model coat-of-arms, based on a confusing Order dated 30th April 1940 which included mistaken drawings pillars on the eagle's wings, the eagle holding them instead of the escutcheon of the 1938 arms.

Santiago Dotor, 27 November 1998

This Order also established that the coat-of-arms has the same design as that of 1938. Therefore, there is no such thing as a 1940 model of the coat-of-arms.

Luis Miguel Arias, 1 February 2002

The 1940 Order included some ill-executed drawings of the 1938-1945 model of the arms, so different from the original design that many authors have thought that a different 1940-1945 model existed.

Luis Miguel Arias, translated by Santiago Dotor, 17 April 2002


Flag for Military and Official Buildings 1940-1945

[Flag for Military and Official Buildings 1940-1945 (Spain)] 18:25
by Luis Miguel Arias
Flag adopted 30 April 1940, abolished 11 October 1945


Flag for Forts and Castles 1940-1945

[Flag for Forts and Castles 1940-1945 (Spain)] 18:25
by Luis Miguel Arias
Flag adopted 30 April 1940, abolished 11 October 1945

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