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Altenburg City (Germany)

Stadt Altenburg, Landkreis Altenburger Land, Thüringen

Last modified: 2021-04-10 by klaus-michael schneider
Keywords: altenburg | hand(right) | rose(red) | castle | inescutcheon | lion(black) |
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[Altenburg city banner] 5:2 image by Stefan Schwoon, 5 Apr 2021
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Altenburg City

Altenburg Banner

It is a black-yellow vertical bicolour. The coat of arms is shifted to the top.
Source: Stefan Schwoon's database
Klaus-Michael Schneider, 5 Apr 2021

Altenburg Flag

[Altenburg city flag] 3:5 image by Stefan Schwoon, 5 Apr 2021

It is a black-yellow horizontal bicolour with centred arms.
Source: Stefan Schwoon's database
Klaus-Michael Schneider, 5 Apr 2021

Altenburg Coat of Arms

Shield parted per pale, at dexter Gules in chief an erected right hand Argent, at sinister Argent a heraldic rose Gules seeded Or and barbed Vert, issuant from base an embattled wall Argent masoned Sable (superimposing dexter and sinister) with a tower of the same topped by a cone roof and a ball, on the wall gate an inescutcheon Or, charged with a lion rampant Sable, armed and tongued Gules.
Altenburg was established by the Sorbs in the 8th century as centre of the Plisni Shire. Since the middle of the 10th century the German kings gained control over the settlement. King Otto II donated the castle to the Bishopric of Peitz in 976. In the 11th and 12th century different settlements developed and before 1150 King Konrad III appointed an imperial burgraves. King Friedrich I Barbarossa in 1158 upgraded Altenburg to a seat of a Free Imperial Territory, the so called Pleißenland. He furthermore appointed a judge and established an Augustine convent in 1172. In 1192 the different settlement cores grew together forming a unique city. The status of a Free Imperial City was finally lost in 1328, when the city was acquired by the Margraves of Meißen, who had pawned the city before in the 13th century. Between 1485 and 1603 city and district of Altenburg were dominions of the Ernestine branch of the Wettin kin, only interrupted by an intermezzo of the Albertine branch between 1547 and 1554. In 1603 the Duchy of Sachsen-Altenburg was established. During the 30-Years-War nearly 90% of its inhabitants were killed. In 1672 the last duke died and the duchy was divided between Sachsen-Gotha and Sachsen-Weimar. The city became a part of Sachsen-Gotha, which the was renamed to Sachsen-Gotha-Altenburg. In 1826 the duchy became a part of Sachsen-Hildburghausen by the Treaty of Hildburghausen. The Duke of Hildburghausen ruled the area as Friedrich of Sachsen-Altenburg since then. Between 1826 and 1918 Altenburg had been the capital of the Duchy of Sachsen-Altenburg.
Embattled wall and tower of the arms are symbolising the status of a city. The inescutcheon displays the family arms of the Margraves of Meißen. The hand is symbolising the right of the city of carrying out of a death sentence. Since 1647 the city was seat of courts of low and high level. The rose displays the family arms of the Burgraves of Altenburg.
Sources: Blaschke et alii 1979, pp.15-16 and Hartmut Ulle: "Neues Thüringer Wappenbuch", 2nd edition, Erfurt 2011, p.9
Klaus-Michael Schneider, 5 Apr 2021

The arms are in use since the 15th century. The flag colours are traditional.
Klaus-Michael Schneider, 5 Apr 2021

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