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Vitória, Espírito Santo (Brazil)

Last modified: 2012-02-10 by ian macdonald
Keywords: espirito santo | vitória |
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Victória, ES (Brazil) image by Carlos Noronha

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About the Flag of Vitória

Information on the flag of Vitória is at the city's official website.
Dov Gutterman, 28 January 1999

The flag is very simple: white with the coat of arms in the center.
Carlos Noronha, 7 February 1999

The municipality of Vitória (330,526 inhabitants in 2011; 93 sq. km) is the capital of Espírito Santo. The municipal territory is made of Ilha de Vitória, an archipelago of 33 islands, linked to the mainland by seven bridges, and of a small part of mainland.

Vitória is the second oldest State capital in Brazil. In 1534, 34 years after the official discovery of Brazil, King of Portugal John III divided the country into hereditary domains ("capitanias"). Vascos Fernandes Countiho was granted Espírito Santo; he founded Vila Velha ("Old Village") on 23 May 1535. Located on the mainland at the foot of the Penha hill, the settlement was prone to native, Dutch and French raids. In search of a safer place, the Portuguese colonists moved the capital to an island located in the bay, which they called Santo Antônio. The urbanists of the time designed a town with houses interspersed with maize plots, known to the natives as "capixabas". Originally the nickname of the inhabitants of Vitória only, "capixabas" is used today to design the inhabitants of the whole Espírito Santo State. On 8 September 1551, the Portuguese defeated the Goytacazes natives. The victory prompted to change the name of the island and town to Vitória, subsequently modernized to Vitória. On 24 February 1823, the municipal statute was granted to Vitória by an Imperial Decree-Law. Vitória is known as "Cidade Sol" (Sun City), as a reference to the song "Vitória Cidade Sol" written by the musician Pedro Caetano (1911-1992) and officially adopted by the Municipal Council as the Municipal Emotional Anthem. The song starts with "Cidade Sol, com o céu sempre azul" (Sun City, with the sky always blue).

The symbols of Vitória are prescribed by Municipal Law No. 2,555 of 26 May 1978. The flag is white with the coat of arms in the middle (Article 5). The dimensions of the flag are 14 units in height on 20 units in width, those of the coat of arms are 7 units on 6 units (Article 6).

The "reestablished" coat of arms is "a rounded-off or Iberic shield; in canton, a five-pointed star or on a field argent; in the opposed quarter a caduceus (symbol of trade) or on a field gules; in the lower quarter, a panoramic picture proper of the entrance of the town: in the background, vert, the Penhedo and Ilhas das Pombas (Doves' Island), in the foreground, on a sea azure a steamboat. The shield ensigned with a mural crown argent, made of eight towers ports sable. The shield supported by two arrows or crossed per saltire. A scroll azure with the writing "Victória " in letters or." (Article 2)

The shield, in the shape once used in Portugal is a tribute to the first colonists of our country. The star represents the Epsilon star portrayed on the national flag, as a tribute to the Espírito Santo State. Argent represents purity. Or represents wealth. The caduceus represents trade, the main source of income of the municipality. Gules (red) represents justice. The Pehedo and Ilhas das Pombas are rocky geographical accidents. The steamboat "dates back" to 1913. Vert (green) represents fertility. Azure (blue) represents nobleness and serenity. The mural crown is a symbol of political emancipation. Its open gates symbolize the hospitality of the inhabitants. The arrows symbolize our origins. The scroll, inscribed with "Victória" (the written form of the time) recalls the victory of the colonists on the confederated native tribes. (Article 3) - Full text of the Law

The Law prescribes the writing "Victória", which is conformed by the PDF file showing the flag on the municipal website. However, the flag in use, as shown on a photo available in the very same website, is inscribed "Vitória", as is the black and white coat of arms represented on the header of the Law! - Drawing of the flag, municipal website - Photo of the flag, municipal website

The image shown above, although globally correct, is worth redrawing. The first quarter should be white instead of silver, and there are some adjustments required in the size and placement of the element of the coat of arms.

Ivan Sache, 23 January 2012