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Ciales (Puerto Rico)

Last modified: 2021-08-25 by rob raeside
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by Thanh-Tâm Le, 12 January 1999

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This city of 18,084 inhabitants was founded on June 24, 1820. The flag of Ciales is an abstract composition reproducing the colors of the Coat of Arms, except for gold, here represented by yellow. [Note: The design is the same as Vega Alta, with more vivd colours.]
Thanh-Tâm Le, 12 January 1999

Ciales- Its flag is an abstract composition where the colors of the shield are repeated, with the exception of gold that is represented in the flag by yellow. The flag is divided in seven (unequal) stripes as hereby described: yellow, red, yellow, purple, yellow, red, and yellow.
Blas Delgado Ortiz, 9 April 2001

More information, in Spanish, can be found on the website of the Ciales Ayer y Hoy (Ciales Yesterday and Today) association at <>:
History of Ciales - The early history of Ciales is obscure. Toponymy seems to indicate that the area was inhabited by Tainos. It is not known if Ciales was already an independent village or an area shared among different rulers (caciques). The Spaniards colonized the area via the Río Grande de Manati in the beginning of the XVIth century, searching for gold (el dorado). Ciales was located on the old Camino de Puerto Rico, a road crossing the island from west to east and possibly built by the natives. The oldest document related to Ciales is act #51, dated 2 December 1734, of the Cabildo (Government administration) of San Juan, mentioning an estate named "los Siales de Manatí". In 1815, the inhabitants campaigned for the administrative upgrading of Ciales into a village (pueblo). The requirements for creating a new village were the presence of a Casa del Rey (King's House), a church and at least 1,000 inhabitants. Another good reason for the updating was the distance from Manati, which prevailed the inhabitants of Cialis to attend the religious and administrative meetings. On 24 June 1820, St John the Baptist's Day, Ciales officially became a new village. The first official name of the village was Lacy. General Lacy was a martyre of the fight for the Monarchic Constitution of 1812 in Spain, and the Spanish Governor of Puerto Rico, Don Gonzalo de Aróstegui y Herrera decided to gave the General's name to the new village. For the celebration of the 150th anniversary of the village in 1970, the municipality accepted as official the theory of Dr. Cayetano Coll y Toste, who claimed that the current name of the village was the anagram of "Lacy-es". This theory is very dubious since the name "Siales" is much older (see above). In 1823, king Ferdinand VII suppressed the 1812 Constitution and reestablished the absolute monarchy. Accordingly, the name of the General who had fought for the 1812 Constitution had to disappear from the Puerto Rican toponymy. From 1823, the municipality used the ancient name of the village, modified to Ciales.
Description of the flag, coat of arms and seal of Ciales - The flag, coat of arms and seal of Ciales were adopted in 1970 for the celebration of the 250th anniversary of the foundation of the city. The symbols of the municipality are prescribed in resolution #13 of the series 1969-1970, approved by the Municipal Council presided by Mayor Don Ismail Nazario. The flag of Cialis is an abstract representation based on the colours and symbolism of the municipal coat of arms. The colours are taken from the family coat of arms of General Luis de Lacy. The flag is divided into seven vertical stripes, yellow-red-yellow-purple-yellow-red-yellow. Yellow symbolizes gold.
The Coat of Arms of Cialis is made of a golden shield with a purple lion standing on its hind feet, with a red tongue, holding in its forefeet a silver rolled parchment. In chief of the shield are placed horizontally three heraldic roses, with red petals and green leaves (botanically speaking, sepals). The shield is surmonted by a golden mural crown with three towers and purple openings. The shield is flanked by two branches of coffee tree with coffee berries, in their natural colours. The branches crossed each other below the shield, where they are tied with a red ribbon. There is also below the shield a white scroll with the writing "Laci-es" in black letters.
The seal of Cialis is made of the outline of the coat of arms surrounded with the writing "Municipio de Ciales 1820, Estado Libro Asociado de Puerto Rico".
Ivan Sache, 30 May 2004

Coat of Arms

by Nelson Román, 16 June 2004