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by Zeljko Heimer
I found in the local informative-economical newspaper Dolina Neretve (the valey of Neretva), montly issued in Metkovic and surroundings this article:
Metkovic gets the arms and the flag
On the lattest session of the City council of Metkovic, councilers have accepted (third time now) the proposals for the arms and the flag presented by the academic painter Nikola Vockovic. He got the job by the City Government to make the solution for the arms. The former two proposals were accepted by the City Council, but were rejected by the commision of the Ministry of Administration, because they didn't follow the rules of heraldics: This time the proposal got the green light from the comission before it was put in the agenda of the City Council session. These arms are historically based on the arms of Neretva (Narenta) which are described in Put oko svijeta [A voyage around the world, Zeljko Heimer] (circa 1330 AD) by an anonymous spanish friar. The new arms could be described as halfcircled quadratic shield with 1st and 4th field blue, and 2nd and 3rd silver, i.e. white. The arms are outlined with a black bordure. The flag is red, horizontally hoisted, and has just the arms on it.
Together with the article there is an image of the new arms.
I don't know when was the last session, but the newspaper is dated 15 May 1996.
There is one striking thing that has to be noticed here - the commision in the Ministry that could refuse the proposal. So, someone is taking care about this. What were the previous proposals, I have no idea, as much as what were the old arms refered by the spanish friar. Anyway, this one looks really good, of course, if you jump over the fact that there is a black bordure by the blue field, breaking the tincture rule. But, the tincture rule was never much followed in this part of the world (see Hungarian heraldry or the arms of Albania or Shubic family).
Metkovic (with acute on the 'c') is a city on the river Neretva on the border with Bosnia and Herzegovina. During the Austro-Hungarian rule, it was a very important port and a trade point, and since recently this importance was renewed, being the bordertown on the main road from the coast into Bosnia.
Zeljko Heimer, 12 August 1996
I have seen three flags on Metkovic municipality Building: Croatia national flag, flag of Dubrovacko-Neretvanska Zupanija and flag of town of Metkovic.
Ivan Sarajcic, 3 September 1999
it is the normal way of displaying flags on municipality bulidings (of course, Croatia in middle, county to the observer's left, city right). Metkovic Flag adopted: May 1996. Design: Nikola Vuckovic, academic painter
Zeljko Heimer, 7 September 1999
The 1996 article I quote from "Neretva" magazine say about the modern Coat of Arms of Methovic: "These arms are historically based on the arms of Neretva (Narenta) which are described in Put oko svijeta [A voyage around the world] (circa 1330 AD) by an anonymous spanish friar."
The example Ivan gives us [see: Neretva page] from 1339 Dulcert's map might as well be the one, or at least a similar one. Surely, the connection is already determined by the sources.
Zeljko Heimer, 15 Febuary 2004
by Zeljko Heimer