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Finistère (Department, France)


Last modified: 2024-04-16 by olivier touzeau
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Flag of Finistère - Image by Olivier Touzeau, 13 March 2019

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Administrative data

Code: 29
Region: Bretagne
Traditional province: Brittany (traditional Breton provinces of Cornouaille and Léon, traditional district of Pays Bigouden)
Bordering departments: Côtes-d'Armor, Morbihan

Area: 6,733 km2
Population (2016): 908,249 inhabitants

Préfecture: Quimper
Sous-préfectures: Brest, Châteaulin, Morlaix
Subdivisions: 4 arrondissements, 27 cantons, 279 municipalities.

The department is named after its geographical location, at land's end (in Latin, finibus terrae).
In 1857, the municipality of Locunolé was transferred from the department of Morbihan to the department of Finistère.

Ivan Sache, 11 November 2009

Penn-ar-Bed , the Breton name of the department, is cognate with Welsh pen y byd, Irish ceann an bheatha and Scots Gaelic ceann na bithe, all of which mean "end of the earth".

Vincent Morley, 7 April 1997

Flag of Finistère

In 2015, General Councils were renamed to Departmental Councils. The Departmental Council modified its logo and the words "Conseil général" in the upper part of the black stripes disappeared, replaced by the words "Le département" in the lower part of the black stripe (photo).

Olivier Touzeau, 13 March 2019

Flag of the former General Council of Finistère


Flag of the former General Council of Finistère - Image by Ivan Sache, 28 September 2009

The latest flag of the General Council of Finistère (photo, 17 July 2009) was similar to the new logo of the General Council, which was "refreshed" in spring 2009.
The flag is vertically divided dark yellow-black. The yellow stripe is charged with an even more stylized version of the coat of arms (but with the ermine spots less stylized than in the previous version), while the black stripe is charged with the white lettering "CONSEIL GÉNÉRAL / Finistère / Penn-ar-Bed (in italics)".

The General Council has proposed to erect three flag poles in front of each secondary school it manages. The flags to be hoisted are the flags of Finistère, France and the European Union, representing the three authorities involved in the management of the school. The first copies will be offerred by the General Council, while revamping and subsequent change of the flags should be paid by the schools. This announcement has elicitated sour comments about the omission of the Breton flag.
[Penhars Info, 11 June 2009]

Ivan Sache, 28 September 2009

Former flag of the General Council

[Flag]         [Flag]         [Flag]

Former flag of the General Council, three versions - Images by Ivan Sache, 22 September 2009

The former flag of the General Council was white with the arms of the department and the writing "CONSEIL GENERAL / FINISTERE" (top) and "Penn-ar-Bed" (bottom, in italics). The flag was also used in 1000 without the writing "CONSEIL GENERAL". A version of the flag with a light blue background (photo) was used for the first time in 1998.
The arms of the department, adopted in 1975 by the Finistère Heraldry Commission, are "Per pale: 1. Or a lion disarmed and contourned sable; 2. Azure a ram salient argent unguled and horned or, the two animals affronty over the partition; a chief argent five ermine spots sable".

Pascal Vagnat, 28 September 2009

Proposal of a flag for the department of Finistère


Flag proposed by Bernard Le Brun - Image by Ivan Sache, 1 March 2004

A proposal of flag for the department of Finistère was submitted by Bernard Le Brun to the President of the General Council of Finistère, Charles Miossec, on 29 June 1993:

The flag is made of two parts with the colours, inverted, of the coat of arms of the department. Blue symbolizes Cornouaille and the sea which waters our coasts. Gold represents Léon and the wealth provided by the various activities of the department, that is agriculture industry, trade and fishery. The broken line separating the blue and yellow fields recalls the three points of Finistère. The two countercolored ermines recalls the parts of our department taken from neighbouring traditional provinces, that is Trégor, east of Morlaix, and Vannetais, east of Quimperlé.

The three points of Finistère are, from north to South, pointe Saint-Mathieu, pointe de Penhir and pointe du Raz.

Bernard Le Brun received an official answer from Charles Miossec's staff on 9 August 1993: "For the moment, we do not consider manufacturing a flag for our department. However, we keep M. Le Brun's proposal for further evaluation."
[P. Rault. Les drapeaux bretons de 1188 à nos jours [rau98]]

Ivan Sache, 1 March 2004

Chamber of Commerce and Industry of Morlaix


Flag of CCI Morlaix, current and former versions - Images by Ivan Sache, 14 August 2010

Chamber of Commerce and Industry of Morlaix (CCI Morlaix, website) was founded in 1833 to manage the commerce port of Morlaix, a town located in North Brittany.
In 1970-1972, CCI Morlaix built the deep-sea port of Roscoff- Bloscon, which superseded Morlaix as the main commerce port of North Brittany. Still managed by CCI, the port of Morlaix is today mostly a yachting port.
In 2003, CCI inaugurated a new fish salesroom in the port of Bloscon, which caused the relocation of most fishing activity from the old port of Roscoff to Bloscon; a marina is expected to be inaugurated in the next years.
CCI Morlaix is also in charge of the Morlaix-Ploujean airport, built in 1939 and reactivated in 1973 with the creation of the Brit'Air regional airline. The company, incorporated into Air France in 2000, has its headquarters and flight training center in Morlaix.

The flag of CCI Morlaix, as seen in June 2010 in the port of Roscoff- Bloscon, is white with the CCI's logo.
The logo of CCI Motlaix is made of a blue square with the lower left corner rounded-off, charged with the writing "CCi (green) / MORLAIX (white). Three smaller, similar blue squares forming a bigger blue square quartered by a white cross are placed above the upper right corner of the main square.

The former flag of CCI Morlaix, white with the former logo of the CCI, was seen (a single copy) in June 2010 in the port of Morlaix. The logo is made of a blue square charged with a green ermine spot, on its right the writing "CCi / MORLAIX" in blue letters.

Ivan Sache, 14 August 2010