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Municipalities in Tirol (Austria)

Gemeinden in Tirol

Last modified: 2022-12-27 by martin karner
Keywords: municipality: austria | tyrol | tirol |
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Territorial subdivisions

Tirol is divided in 279 municipalities, including 11 towns/cities (Stadtgemeinden) and 18 market-towns (Marktgemeinden).

Municipal coats-of-arms

They all have their own municipal coat-of-arms, some of them of quite ancient age, most of them adopted since WW2, though.

Municipal flags

The history of the municipal flags in Tirol is somewhat different from adjacent Bavaria or other Austrian Länder. Only the bigger towns/cities probably used flags before the 1960ies/70ies. However, more and more municipalities were granted their own coat-of-arms. Therefore the then director (1972-77) of the Tirol state archives, Eduard Widmoser, propagated the use of municipal flags, showing the coat-of-arms on a plain golden-yellow field.

The next archive director (Fridolin Dörrer, 1977-88) changed the system, though, and went back to the more traditional striped flags in municipal colours. Therefore, the municipalities already having own coats-of-arms (203 out of 279) were granted municipal colours on 19 May 1981. The remaining municipalities adopted their municipal colours together with the coat-of-arms, after 19 May 1981.

Almost all municipal flags are bicolours, only three municipalities (Lienz, Wörgl, Wattens) have three-striped flags. There are several flags having non-heraldic colour combinations, such as blue-black, blue-red, red-blue, black-red, red-black, black-green, green-red.

Since 1981 all municipalities got their own colours derived from the coat-of-arms. However, as far as I can tell from my own observations, there is quite some mess in Tirol: Some municipalities (e.g. Ellmau and St. Johann in Tirol) actually use their official colours; others use their "old" yellow flags (e.g. Fieberbrunn and Going am Wilden Kaiser); and there are cases where the municipality uses the colours white-red (colours of the state Tyrol) or the reversed colours red-white with the respective municipal arms (e.g. Ladis).

M. Schmöger, 18 September 2003 / 6 October 2003

Status of research

The particular situation in Tirol (with a lot of municipalities using a flag different from the one officially granted) makes it necessary, more necessary than in other parts of Austria (and Germany, for that matter), to thoroughly research what flag is really in use. That means taking, finding or asking for photographs.

I have now photographs of the flags of 176 municipalities (63%), almost all of them giffed now and sent to the list. Only one problematic case (Steinach am Brenner) needs some further information on the details of the arms.

In the remaining 103 cases (37%) I know the official colours and they are reported here. However, I do not know,

  • if they use a flag at all;
  • if they are perhaps using a yellow flag with the arms; 
  • if they are using the Tyrolian colours instead of the municipal colours; 
  • if they swap the arrangement of the colours in the flag.
All of these are existing variations or deviations, thus it is highly  probable that among the 103 we would find them as well.

E-Mails to these municipalities have not succeeded in getting an answer. 
WWW searches have not turned up photographs. 
Visits on flag-flying days to at least some of the municipalities have not provided me with flag photos. 

M. Schmöger, 21 December 2009

See also: