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Saint-Malo (Municipality, Ille-et-Vilaine, France): Historical flags

Last modified: 2005-04-09 by
Keywords: saint-malo | cross (white) | ermine (white) | ermine (black) | ermines: 3 (black) | fleur-de-lys: 15 (yellow) | portcullis (yellow) | corsair |
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XVIIIth century

Naval flag

[Naval flag of Saint-Malo]by Ivan Sache

In the XVIIIth century, the naval flag of Saint-Malo was ermine plain with a red canton charged with a black cross voided throughout. The red colour was probably borrowed from the municipal arms of Saint-Malo.


Merchant flag

[Merchant flag of Saint-Malo]by Ivan Sache

The merchant ships used two closely related flags, both quartered by a black cross voided througout and with a plain red canton; the first flag, shown on Joseph Roux' flag chart (1766), has five ermine spots placed 2-1-2 in each white quarter.

[Merchant flag of Saint-Malo]by Ivan Sache

The second flag has only one ermine spot in each white quarter.

[Merchant flag of Saint-Malo]by Ivan Sache

Roux's chart shows yet another merchant flag for Saint-Malo, blue, quartered by a black cross voided througout, with a plain red canton and five yellow fleurs de lys placed 3-2 in each blue quarter. There seems to be a progressive change from a pure Breton design (white with a black cross) to a French design (blue with a white cross).


Municipal flag

[Municipal flag of Saint-Malo]by Ivan Sache

At the same time, the city of Saint-Malo used a flag quartered by a white cross, with the first and fourth quarters red and the second and third quarters blue; the canton bears a white shield charged with a yellow portcullis and surmonted by a white ermine passant.

[Municipal flag of Saint-Malo]by Ivan Sache

A variant of the flag shows the four quarters blue and only the ermine in the canton.

Source: Philippe Rault (Les drapeaux bretons de 1188 à nos jours [rau98]). Rault's study is mostly based on his personal research and material published by G. Pasch in the magazine Neptunia in 1961-62.

Ivan Sache, 16 January 2005


Corsairs' flag

[Corsaris' flag]by Ivan Sache

During the French Revolution and the First Empire, the corsairs' vessels used blue flags quartered by a white cross, with a red canton charged with a white ermine.

[Corsairs' flag of]by Ivan Sache

Sometimes, the canton had a blue border.

Source: Philippe Rault (Les drapeaux bretons de 1188 à nos jours [rau98]). Rault's study is mostly based on his personal research and material published by G. Pasch in the magazine Neptunia in 1961-62.

Ivan Sache, 16 January 2005

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