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Principality of Samos (Greece, 1832-1912)

Last modified: 2004-03-27 by
Keywords: samos | cross (white) | cross (red) | triangle (white) | triangle (red) |
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Principality of Samosby Herman De Wael

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History of the Principality

The Greeks rebells controlled Samos during the independence war, but it was returned to the Ottoman Empire in 1830, with special conditions. The Principality of Samos was created in December 1832, under Ottoman sovereigniy. The principate lived in peace until 1908, when the islanders revolted against Turkey. The prince Andrew Kopasis followed an anti-Greek policy, and he was murdered on 22 May 1912. His successor, Gregory Vegleris, was pro-Greek.
Turkey withdrew its army from the island when the war against Italy begun (May 1912) and the Greek islanders, led by Temistocles Sophulis, revolted again (September). Vegleris escaped and on the 24 November 1912 the island was incorporated to Greece.
In 1925 there was a conflict and there was some discussion about the proclamation of the independence for the island, but nothing happened.

Jaume Ollé, 26 September 1996

Quoting the Vathi website:

Themistocles Sofoules is one of the most eminent personalities of Samos, during the last twelve-year period of the principality. (...) In September 1912, Samos revolted under his leadership and on 11 November 1912 the island's national assembly declared its union with "the free Greek kingdom".
The union was formally established in March, 1913. For two years, until 1914, the Temporary Government of Samos ruled the island, having Themistocles Sofoules as president. From that moment on, Samos became an integral part of the Greek state."

Jan Mertens, 2 January 2004

Description of the flag

The flag of the Principality of Samos was adopted in 1834. It is very similar to the flag of the Dominican Republic: white cross, with the upper quarters in red and the lower quarters in blue.
The flag was officially in use between 1834 and 24 November 1912.

Source: Hellenic flags. Insignia-Emblems. [kok97]

Jaume Ollé, 8 October 1996

Standard of the Prince

Sources differ about this flag:

[Samos (Standard of the Prince)]by Jaume Ollé

The personal standard of the Prince of Samos was blue with in the center a red triangle pointing upwards charged with a white Swiss cross.

Sources: Jordi Perez Ibanez; Fezvi Kurtoglu [kur92], Adolfo Duran Rodriguez.

Jaume Ollé, 8 October 1996

Standard of the Prince?by Pascal Vagnat

The personal standard of the Prince was light blue with a red Swiss cross in a white triangle.

Source: Hellenic flags. Insignia-Emblems. [kok97]

Pascal Vagnat, 11 January 1999

On a Samos website, the two images on top show the island's flag and the princely flag held by a policeman.The last image on the sixth row (inauguration of horse tram, 1905) shows the island's flag together with the princely flag. If we compare the various hues on these flags, may we not conclude that the cross-bearing triangle was indeed white?

Jan Mertens, 2 January 2004

Alternative flag reports

[Samos (incorrect version)]by Zeljko Heimer

A red over blue flag with a small white cross near the hoist is shown as the flag of Samos by Lloyd's House Flags and Funnels, 1912, available online on the Mystic Seaport Library website.

Ned Smith, 22 December 2003

The German flag chart Die Flaggen der Kriegs- und Handels- Marinen aller Staaten der Erde (The flags of the navies and merchant navies of all the states of the wordl), Moritz Rühl, Leipzig (9th edition, no year given but showing the flag of French president Emile Loubet 1899-1906), gives three flags for Samos:

Jan Mertens, 22 December 2003