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City of Munich (Bavaria, Germany)

Landeshauptstadt München

Last modified: 2002-09-21 by santiago dotor
Keywords: bavaria | munich | münchen | landeshauptstadt münchen | muenchen | munchen | lozengy (white-blue) |
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[Munich, vertical flag (Bavaria, Germany)] 5:2
by Stefan Schwoon


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Description

The banner [hanging flag] version is probably the flag that is seen most throughout the city.

Stefan Schwoon, 8 March 2001


Horizontal Flag Variants

[Munich, horizontal variant 1 (Bavaria, Germany)]      [Munich, horizontal variant 2 (Bavaria, Germany)]
both by Eugene Baldwin

The city flag of the Bavarian capital Munich has, like Bavaria, two flags tracing back to the middle ages with no known date of adoption. Variant no.1 shows two horizontal stripes of black over yellow (a real yellow, not a golden yellow like in the German national flag). Variant no.2 has black and yellow lozenges arranged like in the Bavarian flag. Once again the number of lozenges is not fixed.

The colours derive from the Greater City Arms: on a silver ground a black-dressed monk within a red city archway, crowned by two black-yellow zigzagged roofs (= origin of the city colours), a yellow lion emerging between. The rather more known Lesser City Arms show only the black monk in a silver shield. Remarkably the flag derives from the Greater City Arms, not from the Lesser ones.

Dieter Linder, 25 March 1997 and 13 January 1998

Both flag variants are totally equal in their rights, which means a citizen or state official is free in his choice. The more popular one is the lozenge variant, since it underlines the so-called peculiar character of the Bavarian statehood (Bavaria is the German state with the longest historical roots). However the lozenge variant is also more expensive in production and acquisition.

For your additional information I add the replies received from Dr. Stahleder, director of the Munich archives —an expert in these things, I presume— in the office of the Munich City Mayor to questions asked by me. The letter of the city office is dated 24th March 1997:

Q: Since which date are the city colours used and is there an official grant?
A: They are used since the second half of the 16th century and may be traced backed by illustrations. An official grant does not exist.

Q: Are the striped and the lozenge variants equal in rights or are there any differences?
A: Both are totally equal in rights. There is no difference in their use or meaning.

Q: Are there any regulations for the dimensions, the proportions, the colour shades or the number of lozenges?
A: No, there are not.

Q: Does the City Mayor use a special office flag or car standard?
A: No, he does not.

Addendum to the first question: The Bavarian guidelines for flags and arms provide an official grant except for historical symbols. These are symbols used before the enforcement of the respective guidelines, which took effect in the middle of our century. That is the reason why the city flags of Munich were not to be granted.

Dieter Linder, 19 November 1998


Vertical Flag Variants

Oktoberfest 2000 no.1      Oktoberfest 2000 no.2     
[Vertical flag Oktoberfest 2000 no.1 (Munich, Bavaria, Germany)] 3:1 [Vertical flag Oktoberfest 2000 no.2 (Munich, Bavaria, Germany)] 6:1
both by Marcus Schmöger

Some vexillological observations during the 2000 Oktoberfest:

  1. In front of the Feldherrnhalle ("general's hall") there were two large flagstaffs, one displaying a large Bavarian white-blue striped bicolor, the other a Munich black-yellow striped bicolor. Both had proportion of about 3:1. At the top of the flagstaffs there were distinctive finials: a lion for Bavaria, a monk for Munich. I guess these flags are among the largest flags in Bavaria.
  2. At the Rathaus (town hall) there were very long vertical flags (about 6:1): Bavaria, Germany and Munich.
  3. All around the old town of Munich there were groups of flagstaffs installed displaying alternately the Bavarian flag and the Munich flag. The flags used had a proportion of about 3:1 (higher than wide) and consisted of white-blue lozenges or black-yellow lozenges, respectively.
  4. The buses and trams displayed a triangular flag white-blue and one black-yellow.

Marcus Schmöger, 6 October 2000

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