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Horcajo de la Sierra-Aoslos (Municipality, Community of Madrid, Spain)

Last modified: 2016-05-19 by ivan sache
Keywords: horcajo de la sierra-aoslos |
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Flag of Horcajo de la Sierra-Aoslos - Image by Ivan Sache, 10 July 2015


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Presentation of Horcajo de la Sierra-Aoslos

The municipality of Horcajo de la Sierra-Aoslos (179 inhabitants in 2014; 2,120 ha; municipal website) is located in the north of the Community of Madrid, 90 km of Madrid. The municipality is made of the two villages of Horcajo de la Sierra (121 inh.) and Aoslos (58 inh.).

Horcajo de la Sierra is named for its topography, on a root (horca, "a fork") meaning "the confluence of two brooks / the union of two mountains"). The village was first documented in Alfonso XI's Libro de Montería (14th century). Horcajo was part of the Community of the Town and Land of Buitrago del Lozoya.
Aoslos is of obscure etymology, maybe derived form the Celtic root cosol, "a walnut". The village was established by colonists from Horcajo de la Sierra. The village was first documented in the 16th century, as located near a chapel since then disappeared. The Ensenada Cadaster (18th century) lists it as "a borough of Horcajo".

Ivan Sache, 10 July 2015


Symbols of Horcajo de la Sierra-Aoslos

The flag (photos) and arms of Horcajo de la Sierra-Aoslos are prescribed by a Decree adopted on 21 September 1995 by the Government of the Community of Madrid and published on 16 October 1995 in the official gazette of the Community of Madrid, No. 246, p. 8 (text) and on 7 November 1995 in the Spanish official gazette, No. 266, pp. 32,271-32,272 (text).
The symbols are described as follows:

Flag: In proportions 2:3, a white panel bordered in blue, charged in the center with the municipal coat of arms.
Coat of arms: Per pale, 1. Argent a pairle azure, 2. The arms of Mendoza. The shield surmounted by a Royal Spanish crown.

The Royal Academy of History validated the proposed arms, suggested by the Service of Historical Heritage of the Community of Madrid. The pairle looks like a fork (horca), alluding to the name of the place. The arms of the Dukes of the Infantado recall they were lords of the place until the end of the Ancient Regime.
The Academy validated the proposed flag, which differs form the flag eventually approved by the border, here made of squares in turn green and red.
[Boletín de la Real Academia de la Historia, 1997, 194, 1: 307]

The Royal Academy rejected previously proposed arms, featuring a pairle and a bordure compony of four plain pieces. The Academy recognized the simplicity of the arms, which are compliant with classic heraldry. However, all possible arms are not necessarily adequate for Spanish municipalities; the possible designs shall match the use of each region. The proposed bordure is totally unknown to Castilian heraldry, beyond municipal arms. The Academy would prefer a simple bordure charged with a specific element; such a solution would improve the extreme curtness, to say so, of the proposed design. It could also be worth including the arms of the house of the Infantado, once lords of the place, as done by other municipalities of the district.
[Boletín de la Real Academia de la Historia, 1995, 192, 1: 164]

Diego Hurtado de Mendoza y Figueroa (1415/1417-1479), the elder son of Íñigo López de Mendoza, First Marquis of Santillana, was made Duke of the Infantado (full title, "Duque de las Cinco Villas del Estado del Infantado") in 1475; subsequently, the Dukes of the Infantado were made first-rank Grandees of Spain, and were therefore allowed to wear their hat in the presence of the king. Íñigo de Arteaga y Martín (b. 1941) is the 19th Duke of the Infantado.
"Vert a bend gules fimbriated or" are the oldest known arms of Mendoza; subsequently modified several times, the arms always included a red bend on a green field. The arms quartered per saltire were introduced by the first Marquis of Santillana and appear on a seal dated 1440; the marquis quartered his father's arms (Mendoza) with his mother's arms (de la Vega). His descendants were known as Mendoza de Guadalajara or Mendoza de l'Ave María. In the representations of these arms, the first quarter is inscribed with "AVE MARÍA" while the third quarter is inscribed with "PLENA GRATIA" (or, at least "GRATIA").
[José Luis García de Paz (UAM), Los poderosos Mendoza website]

Ivan Sache, 10 July 2015