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Liechtenstein

Förschtatum Liachtaschta / Fürstentum Liechtenstein; Principality of Liechtenstein

Last modified: 2012-04-13 by antónio martins
Keywords: liechtenstein | liachtaschta | principality | vertical | error | government flag | princely | coat of arms: inescutcheon | bonnet | crown (golden) | crown (colored) | variant | doubt | aubergine |
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(Flagge and Fahne)
Flag of Liechtenstein 3:5 C--/--
by Željko Heimer, 12 May 2002


See also:

External links:

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Presentation of Liechtenstein

On 23 January 1719, Charles VI made a principality of the county of Vaduz (now Unterland) and the seigniory of Schellenberg (now Oberland), which had been united since 1434. The first prince was Anton-Florian of Liechtenstein. The castle of Liechtenstein is located in Möding, in Lower-Austria. After the dissolution of the Holy German Empire in 1806, the principality became sovereign, joined the Rhine Confederation (1807-1814) and later the Germanic Confederation (1815-1866). A customs union treaty was signed with Austria in 1852 and denounced in 1918 following the breakdown of the Austro-Hungarian Empire. In 1866, the Prag peace between Austria and Prussia confirmed the independence of Liechtenstein, which definitively disbanded its army. The Constitution of 5 October 1921 replaced the absolute monarchy by a constitutional one. Diplomatic, customs, economic and postal union treaties were signed with Switzerland between 1919 and 1923. Liechtenstein joined Council of Europe in 1978, United Nations Organization in 1990, European Free Trade Association in September 1991, and European Economic Area in December 1992.
Ivan Sache, 01 Mar 2001, translating and adapting Roger Baert in [bat00]

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Description of the flag

Blue over red bicolour with golden princely bonnet in canton.
Željko Heimer, 12 May 2002

The German text of the 1982 law prescribes four kinds of flag:

  • Flagge (a flag hoisted on a building or a mast), horizontally divided, 3:5
  • Fahne (a flag to be carried), horizontally divided, 3:5
  • Banner, a long banner hoisted vertically, 4:1, with the same use as the Flagge and the Banner
  • Wimpel, a small triangular fanion.
Ivan Sache, 01 Mar 2001, translating and adapting Roger Baert in [bat00]

In the official flag book of Liechstenstein [kra82], the shade of blue is the same for all flags, and the prince and government flags also 3:5, just like the national flag.
Pascal Vagnat, 12 Oct 1999

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Design of the bonnet

In Neubecker’s Flaggenbuch 1939 [neu92], the details of the bonnet are somewhat different than those in the Album 2000 [pay00]: the design is simpler — without the perls and hatching of “inner” part.
Željko Heimer, 12 May 2002

The bonnet was slightly modified on 4 June 1957 and modernized on 30 June 1982.
Ivan Sache, 01 Mar 2001, translating and adapting Roger Baert in [bat00]

Interestingly, Baert [bat00] calls the crown “bonnet de prince” and not couronne.
Ivan Sache, 01 Mar 2001

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Supposed color meanings

In 1937, the head of government Joseph Hoop presented officially the new flag and gave a symbolic interpretation of its colours: «Blue is the colour of a radiant sky, red the colour of the embers in the fireplace during evening gatherings; gold of the crown shows that our people, our country and our princely House are united in heart and spirit.»
Ivan Sache, 01 Mar 2001, translating and adapting Roger Baert in [bat00]

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Alternative flag shapes

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(Banner)

Banner of Liechtenstein by Željko Heimer, 12 May 2002

The German text of the 1982 law prescribes four kinds of flag:

  • Flagge (a flag hoisted on a building or a mast), horizontally divided, 3:5
  • Fahne (a flag to be carried), horizontally divided, 3:5
  • Banner, a long banner hoisted vertically, 4:1, with the same use as the Flagge and the Banner
  • Wimpel, a small triangular fanion.
Ivan Sache, 01 Mar 2001, translating and adapting Roger Baert in [bat00]

Liechstenstein has a 4:1 banner, two vertical stripes blue and red, and the crown appears on it, in the canton, and is still “horizontally”.
Pascal Vagnat, 13 Apr 1999

The size of the bonnet is given in Neubecker’s Flaggenbuch [neu92] as 40×50 cm, and the distance from top to the top of the bonnet is 55 cm. Of course, the bonnet’s vertical axis is centered on the blue stripe.
Željko Heimer, 12 May 2002


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(Wimpel)

Wimpel of Liechtenstein
image by Željko Heimer, 12 May 2002

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Colored variant

Var flag of Liechtenstein
image by Manuel Gabino, 13 Oct 2003

Last weekend, I have visited to Flag Museum managed by László Balogh. I have noticed that flag of Liechtentestein there (received from Liechtenstein!) is different, because of the princely crown.
Horváth Zoltán, 25 Nov 2002

Every Liechtenstein flag I’ve ever seen has the all-yellow crown.
Nathan Lamm, 25 Nov 2002

The official website of the Princely House of Liechtenstein uses the version with the all-gold crown. See llvweb.liechtenstein.li/lisite/html/liechtenstein/index.jsp?sync=true&useIOId=true&L=en_EN&D=A0000049.
Ned Smith, 26 Nov 2002

According TV sports news, fans supporting the Team Liechtenstein durign the last two football (soccer) matches as hosts (vs England and vs Slovakia) waved national flags with crown colored instead of gold. Possibly a variant? Note also that the national team jersey, either red or blue or yellow, bears the crown colored also.
Manuel Gabino, 13 Oct 2003

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Coat of arms

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Greater arms

CoA of Liechtenstein
image by António Martins, 04 Dec 2001
(adapted from www.ngw.nl/int/oveur/images/liechten.jpg)

Translated from www.liechtenstein.li/lisite/html/liechtenstein/index.jsp?treeId=ZALFAK_de_DE&topicId=0.9&sync=true:

  • Shield quartered: first, or an eagle sable, crowned and armed gold, [langued gules], charged with a trefoiled crescent and a cross formy all argent (Silesia);
  • second, fessy of eight or and sable, a crancelin in bend vert (Kuenringe);
  • third, per pale argent and gules (Troppau);
  • fourth, or a virgin eagle [approx. a crowned harpy] sable, crowned and armed or, headed argent (East Friesland or Rietberg).
  • On a point azure, a [hunting] horn or (Jaegerndorf).
  • Inescutcheon: per fess or and gules (Princely House of Liechtenstein).
  • Mantle: prince’s mantle purpure [it looks gules though] doubled ermine,
  • crowned with a prince’s crown [rimmed in ermine].
The “virgin eagle” (Jungfrauadler) appeared first in the Nuremberg coat of arms and initially depicted an eagle with a crowned king’s head. Through the centuries and particularly from the 15 century onwards it adopted more and more female-like features.
Santiago Dotor, 23 Dec 1998

The greater State arms are also the dynastic arms of the princely House. They have remained unchanged since 1623 and were confirmed as greater State arms by the law of 4 June 1957. The lesser arms were established by the law of 4 June 1957. Per fess or and gules (i.e. the escutcheon of the greater arms), topped with the bonnet de prince.
Ivan Sache, 01 Mar 2001, translating and adapting Roger Baert in [bat00]

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Lesser arms

Liechstenstein also has the lesser coat of arms, consisting of yellow over red shield topped with princely bonnet in proper colours.
Željko Heimer, 12 May 2002

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The 2004 identity campaign

Aubergine crown
image by Pascal Vagnat, 04 Jul 2004

A very nice person in the Liechtenstein Government Press Office gave me this reference. As has been pointed out: this is not a flag replacement but in terms of symbology it might be of interest.
Marten Gallagher, 05 Jul 2004

Everything about the new “corporate identity” of Liechtenstein is here to read (my translation):

The new image of Liechtenstein doesn’t replace the official state coat of arms or state flag. It completes them. It was created, in order to give to Liechtenstein a larger perception and recognizing effect. An appearance, which addresses to humans personally and develops relations, something that most official state symbols cannot obtain.
That might be the aubergine () effect…
Pascal Vagnat, 04 Jul 2004


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