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Capital Department, Corrientes Province, Argentina

Last modified: 2021-12-24 by rob raeside
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[Pedro Ramon Fernandez municipal flag] 1:2 image by Ivan Sache, 3 May 2017

The municipality of Corrientes (336,334 inhabitants in 2010, that is, 30% of the population of the Corrientes Province; 500 sq. km) is located on the eastern bank of river Paraná, here the border with the Chaco Province.

Corrientes was established on 3 April 1588 by Juan Torres de Vera y Aragón (1527-1613), Adelantado of Río de la Plata (1577-1913) and Governor of Río de la Plata and Paraguay (1577-1578; 1588-1592). The foundation charter names the "town of Vera, on the site of the Seven Currents ["Corrientes"] in the Paraná and Tape Province". The town was established as an administrative post located between Buenos Aires and Asunción and a convenient base for further colonization of the areas limited by the Río de la Plata and the Paraguay; the site was selected because of its natural river harbour. The early colony was under permanent threat of raids by the local natives, who did not belong to the same tribes as the settlers, mostly coming from Asunción. The wooden fort aimed at protecting the town did not stop the raids. Peace was restored after Philip III had authorized on 30 January 1609 the Society of Jesus to implement a more efficient and less brutal mode of colonization.
In 1807, Corrientes contributed to the defence of Buenos Aires against the English invasion, by the way of the Corps of Corrientes Chasseurs. From 1818 to 1820, the town was occupied by Andrés Guaykurarí, leader of the natives of the mission.

Corrientes Province was established on 11 December 1821. The first provincial governor, Pedro Ferré, introduced banknotes in 1826. The town of Corrientes was granted municipal status on 24 April 1855. Inaugurated on 25 April 1855, the Constituent General Congress enacted the Provincial Constitution on 12 October 1855. - Municipal website

The flag of Corrientes was selected in a public contest prescribed by Resolution No. 413, adopted on 6 March 2014. The winning design, submitted by Manuel Echeverría Ponce, 22 years old, was selected by the jury among 47 proposals submitted in March-April 2014.

The flag was inaugurated on 29 June 2014. The copy of the flag blessed by Pope Francis, featured on that day, is now exhibited to all at the Town Museum, kept in a crystal urn protected by a glass window. The flag was proclaimed of interest by the Chamber of Representatives and by the Senate of the province.

The flag of Corrientes is prescribed in Article 2 of Ordinance No. 6,074, adopted on 29 April 2014, as follows:
The flag shall be made of three vertical, lateral stripes, celestial blue, red, and celestial blue. The red stripe shall be the thinnest in comparison with the central, vertical white stripe. [Charged] with the evening sun; with the fundamental cross featured in the center of the sun, and seven Guarani spears in base of the white stripe, placed vertically.

The meaning of the flag is given in the Preamble of the Ordinance, as follows:
Red represents Federalism used by Artigas and Andresito in their clothes and as the base of the State, flanking in two vertical stripes the national flag. Red also represents the blood shed by our soldiers in the Malvinas, the power of the Holy Ghost according to the Christian liturgy, and love and ardor of the people of the town.
Celestial blue is the colour selected by Belgrano for the flag of our country, also adopted for the flag of the Corrientes Province, representing the local sky; and the colour of the cloak of Our Lady of Itatí*.
White is the colour selected by Belgrano for the flag of our country, also adopted for the flag of the Corrientes Province, representing God. White is a symbol of peace aspired to by our society.

The Cross of the Miracles** is an historical wooden cross, symbolizing our town, also featured in the provincial and municipal arms.The sun represents life, being in the Guarani culture the house of Tupá*** and also featured on the national flag as the Sun of May, the Revolution and the first Cry for Freedom. The sun is represented as the sun in the Corrientes evening seen from our cherished coast. The seven spearheads represent the Seven Heads of Corrientes, recalling the old name of the town, San Juan de Vera de las Siete Corrientes, as a reference to our coastal geography and the seven heads or peninsulas that enter the river and generate strong water currents. The spearheads also represent the original inhabitants, the Guarani, who used these weapons for fishing and defence. Finally, number seven is known in the Bible as the perfect number and conveys a strong symbolic meaning indifferent religions, representing Good.

Resolution No. 1,434 of 26 June 2014 establishes 29 June as the Day of the Flag of the Town of Corrientes. The Resolution further grants permission to use of the flag to private persons, cultural and sports entities, and private organisms. No one shall be discriminated or deprived of the charge of bearing, escorting or hoisting the flag because of its citizenship, origin, religion, ethnicity, physical characteristics or social condition. Every cultural, sports, cultural or social organism shall be allowed to permanently keep a copy of the flag in a window or a box for the sake of archiving. - Municipal website - Resolution No. 416, 6 March 2014 - Ordinance No. 6,074, 29 April 2014 - Resolution No. 1,434, 26 June 2014

*Our Lady of Itatí is the patron saint of the Corrientes Province. The devotion to Our Lady of Itati has its origins in the account of Spanish Jesuit missionary and a group of locals who converted to the Catholic faith, who were saved from an attack by another tribe after they prayed the rosary. According to the story, a passage was opened through Yaguari River and the people of Itati were saved due to the intercession of the Blessed Mother.
On July 16, 1900, at the doors of the Shrine of the Most Holy Cross of the Miracles in Corrientes, Our Lady of Itati was crowned by Bishop Rosendo de la Lastra y Gordillo, on behalf of Pope Leo XIII, before all the bishops of Argentina, Paraguay and Uruguay, and a multitude of the faithful. - Catholic News Agency, 19 July 2012

**The Cross of the Miracles was erected by the Spaniards near the Arazatý fort. Believing the cross acted as a protecting weapon, natives attempted to burn it, to no avail, and soon became pacific. A secondary tradition mentions a ray emitted by the cross that hit the natives; this alleged sign of divine intervention is not recognized by the church, which deems it discriminatory to the natives. A similar tradition invoking an harquebus shoot powered by God is also rejected. The colonists erected a chapel to protect the cross, where processions were first organized in 1660. The cross was transferred to another chapel on 10 March 1730, rebuilt in 1808. - Official website

***Tupá is the Guarani supreme god, creator of the light and the universe.

Ivan Sache, 3 May 2017

[Pedro Ramon Fernandez municipal flag] image by Ivan Sache, 3 May 2017

The selection of the flag stirred controversy. The originally selected design lacks the Cross of the Miracles. Father Julián Zini****, member of the jury, complained that the winning design was proposal No. 34, which features the cross, and not proposal No.3. Representatives of the native people also complained that they had not been involved in the selection of the flag. - El Litoral, 5 April 2014

The Cross of the Miracles was eventually added, inscribed in the sun, with permission of the designer.

**** Julián Zini (b. 1939), ordained Roman Catholic priest in 1963 by Alberto Devoto, first Bishop of Goya, is a noted poet and folk musician. A fierce defender of the cultural and natural heritage of the Corrientes and Misiones provinces, Zini is an emblematic player of chamamé, Corrientes' folk music style - the town of Corrientes being, of course, Chamamé's World Capital. Raúl (Raulito) Barboza (b. 1938), aka the Master of Chamamé, successfully introduced chamamé to Europe after having settled in France in 1987. - Biography of Julián Zini - Live performance in the Corrientes Chamamé festival (2017)


Papal blessing 

Designer of the flag 

Other sightings 

Ivan Sache, 3 May 2017

[Pedro Ramon Fernandez municipal flag] 3:5 image by Ivan Sache, 3 May 2017

The flag hoisted outdoors appears to be in 1:2 proportions while the flag for indoor use has 3:5 proportions.

Ivan Sache, 3 May 2017