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Vojvodina (Autonomous Province, Serbia): Coat of arms

Last modified: 2013-08-10 by ivan sache
Keywords: vojvodina | backa | banat | srem | st. paul | lion (yellow) | deer | tree: poplar |
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[Coat of arms of Vojvodina]

Coat of arms of Vojvodina - Image by Željko Heimer, 29 June 2002

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Coat of arms of Vojvodina

The Parliament of Vojvodina adopted the coat of arms of the province on 28 June 2002. The coat of arms shall be displayed together with the coat of arms of Serbia, and is purely protocolar, displayed on diplomas, seals, etc.

Zikica Milošević, 29 June 2002

The use of the coat of arms of Vojvodina is prescribed by Regulation Uputstvo o bližem uređivanju upotrebe grba Autonomne Pokrajine Vojvodine, published in Službeni list Autonomne Pokrajine Vojvodine, 18/2003.
The Regulation prescribes who can use the coat of arms, when and how, and how to obtain the permission to use it in certain instances etc. The text refers to the 2002 Decision on the adoption of the coat of arms, Odluka o upotrebi istorijskog znamenja Autonomne Pokrajine Vojvodine, published in Službeni list Autonomne Pokrajine Vojvodine, 10/2002.
The 2002 Decision includes a chapter entitled "Heraldic explanation" that claims that the coat of arms is based on the flag of the Zemun National Guard in 1848.

Željko Heimer, 14 May 2004

The three fields of the new coat of arms of Vojvodina bear the coats of arms of counties, then Hungarian and Croatian, granted in 18th century:

  • Bačka. The coat of arms of Bačka (Hungarian, Bács) was granted by King Leopold I (1657-1705) in 1699. It was later (1861?) retained for the united County of Bács-Bodrog.
    On a blue field, on a green grass standing St. Paul wearing a blue shirt and a red toga with a golden nimbus, holding in dexter a silver sword pointing downwards with a golden hilt and in sinister a black book (Bible).
    Sombor (Hungarian, Zombor) was the capital of the county. The county was divided between Hungary and Yugoslavia after the First World War. The part remaining in Hungary was finally incorporated into Bács-Kiskun County, which also uses the historical coat of arms with St. Peter in its dexter half.
  • Banat. The golden lion rampant on red holding a sabre was the coat of arms of the Tamis Banate (German, Temescher Banat; Serbian, Tamiški Banat), whose name more frequently used in English is Banat of Temeswar (after its capital, present-day Timişoara, Romania). It was an Austrian crown land, its Governor (never styled a Ban, though) responding directly to the Emperor, and existed from 1718, when the area was taken over from the Ottoman Empire, to 1779, when it was incorporated into Hungary and divided into the counties of Torontál, Temes and Krassó-Szörény. What is considered the Banat in Vojvodina, comprises most of the territory of Torontál, smaller (southern) part of Temes and a small area in the south-west of Krassó-Szörény. The rest of Krassó-Szörény, larger (central and northern) part of Temes and a smaller (northern) part of Torontál are nowadays in Romania and a small area in the north-west of Torontál has remained in Hungary. These borders were established after the First World War.

    The coat of arms of the Banat of Temerswar is derived from the oldest arms of the Habsburg family, which were "Or a lion rampant gules armed langued and crowned azure". The arms denote the land as the Emperor's personal possession (hence the lion, only without the crown, and the colours, or and gules reversed and azure excluded, or in its place), which is situated at the border with the Ottoman Empire (hence the sabre in lion's paw). The coat of arms is nowadays used only in the part of Banat in Vojvodina.
    The coat of arms of the part of Banat in Romania is partly based on it, too, "Gules over waves azure a bridge with two arched openings or wherefrom issuing a demi-lion or holding a sabre in its right forepaw". Half of the lion also appears on the arms of Timiş county in Romania. The part of Banat in Hungary is nowadays incorporated into the county of Csongrád and uses its coat of arms, which was amended (in the fourth quarter) with that of Torontál to denote this territorial change.
    For the part of the three counties founded in 1779, only the coat of arms of Temes was partly based on that of the Banat of Temeswar. It was granted in 1799 by Maria Theresia, and was inspired by the civic arms of Temesvár, the county capital. The coat of arms is "Per fess and in chief per pale, 1. Hungary Modern (double cross), 2. per fess sable a demi-lion rampant issuant or holding in dexter a scimitar argent and azure three wavy barullets argent, 3. Temesvár fort proper, overall a bar or inscribed sable II.J. M.T. (Joseph II and Maria Theresia). The three wavy lines are for three main rivers, Dunav (Duna), Tamiš (Temes) and Moriš (Maros).

  • Srem. The third coat of arms is that of Srem (Hungarian, Szerém; Croatian, Srijem), granted in 1747 by Queen Maria Theresa. While the other two were directly under the Hungarian Crown, Srem was part of the Croatian-Slavonian Crown.
    After the First World War, it remained in the newly formed Kingdom of Serbs, Croats and Slovenes. When the Banate of Croatia was formed within Yugoslavia in 1939 it was also entirely part of it, and in 1941 it was part of the Axis puppet Independent State of Croatia.
    After the Second World War, the borders between the Republics were designed, which are known as the AVNOJ borders. The eastern part of Srem was incorporated into Vojvodina. After the breakup of former Yugoslavia in the 1990s, the eastern part of Srem remained there.
    The modern Croatian county of Vukovar-Srijem uses the same coat of arms.

    The three white stripes on blue, representing the three rivers of Srem: Bosut, Sava and Danube. The deer that is resting on the ground is close to the poplar (topola) green tree. The tree changed though the history. In the original grant the tree was a cypress tree. The modern Croatian design prefered it to make it an oak tree, which is abundant in the region and is a kind of a national symbol. Similarly, poplar is connected to Serbia (the royal family stems from a place named Topola).

Željko Heimer, Zikica Milošević & Tomislav Todorović, 25 July 2006

Banner of arms of Banat

[Banner of arms of Banat]

Banner of arms of Banat - Image by Tomislav Todorović & Željko Heimer, 29 June 2002

The banner of arms of Banat was seen in a TV-report in November 2003, during the campaign for elections for the People's Assembly which took place in December that year. It was used as the table flag by the Banat Forum (Banatski forum), a regionalist political organization, at a meeting their representatives had with those of the Reformists of Vojvodina (Reformisti Vojvodine), a political party formerly a member of the DOS coalition. The table flag was hoisted vertically, with proportions 2:3, and the design was the same as that of the coat of arms of Banat as shown in the coat of arms of Vovjodina. This was the only public appearance of this flag which I have recorded.
The coat of arms of Banat currently has no official status except as the part of the coat of arms of Vojvodina, before whose adoption it was not widely known, just like the coats of arms of the other two regions, and it does not seem to have come into a widepsread use as a stand-alone emblem yet; the same is true for the banner of arms.

Tomislav Todorović, 26 March 2008