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Steenokkerzeel (Municipality, Province of Flemish Brabant, Belgium)

Last modified: 2019-07-30 by ivan sache
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[Flag of Steenokkerzeel]

Municipal flag of Steenokkerzeel - Image by Ivan Sache, 25 November 2007

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Presentation of Steenokkerzeel

The original name of the town was Hockensala (1057), and Steen was added for "castle". One of the most famous inhabitants of this castle was Charles de Lannoy, general and diplomat of Emperor Charles V, and Viceroy of Naples. Five of his eight children were born in Steenokkerzeel. Charles de Lannoy (1487-1527) was a soldier and statesman who served the Habsburg Emperors Maximilian I and Charles V. Appointed Governor of Tournai in 1521 and Vice-Roy of Naples in 1522, he succeeded the late Prospero Colonna as the Commander-in-Chief of the Imperial armies in Italy in 1523. Involved in the sixth and seven Italian Wars, Lannoy commanded the siege of Marseilles in 1524 and defeated King of France François I in Pavia in 1525. Charles V made him the first Count of Lannoy in 1526.
Lannoy, the cradle of the house of Lannoy, is today a small town located in the north of France. The house of Lannoy emerged in the XIIIth century and still exists; the head of the house is currently Count Philippe de Lannoy, who lives in the castle of Anvaing.

Zita of Bourbon-Parma (1892-1989) was the wife of Emperor Charles I of Austria and the last Empress-consort of Austria and Queen-consort of Hungary (1916-1918). She lived in Steenokkerzeel from 1929 to 1940, lobbying on behalf of the Habsburg family and promoting a Habsburg restoration, to no avail.

Melsbroek was the site of a military airport of the Belgian Air Force.

Jarig Bakker & Ivan Sache, 27 November 2007

Municipal flag of Steenokkerzeel

The municipal flag of Steenokkerzeel is red with the fourth quarter of a white disc placed along the hoist and the third quarter of a yellow disc along the fly. The radius of the discs is the height of the flag.
According to the Gemeentewapens in België - Vlaanderen en Brussel, the flag was adopted by the Municipal Council on 28 December 1985, confirmed by the Executive of Flanders on 1 July 1986 and published in the Belgian official gazette on 3 December 1987.
The flag is a banner of the municipal arms, excluding all the charges. Its three sections recall the three former municipalities merged in 1976.

According to the municipal website, the official description of the flag is Van keel, aan de hijs rechteronderkwartschijf van zilver, aan het uiteinde linkeronderkwartschijf van goud.
The official description of the arms is:
Ingebogen gekapt
1. In zilver drie leeuwen van sinopel, geklauwd en getongd van keel, gekroond van goud
2. In keel een dwarsbalk van zilver, getralied van lazuur
3. In goudhermelijn een leeuw van sinopel, geklauwd en getongd van keel
(Chapé ployé, gules a fess argent fretty azure, in dexter argent three lions vert armed and langued and crowned or, in sinister or a semy of ermines a lion vert armed and langued gules).

Part 1 of the arms recalls Steenokkerzeel, which, however, did not have arms until the municipal reform. The State Archives in Brussels keep two municipal seals of Steenokkerzeel, dated 18 March 1538 and 20 May 1566, respectively. They show the arms of the Lannoy family, In zilver drie leeuwen van sinopel, geklauwd en getongd van keel, gekroond van goud.
According to the Armorial of the Knights of the Golden Fleece, Charles de Lannoy (1482-1527), lord of Senzeilles, Prince of Sulmone, Count of Ast, Governor of Tournai and Vice-Roy of Naples, Knight of the Golden Fleece in 1515 (Grant #140) bore "Argent three lions vert armed langued and crowned or". Several other members of the Lannoy family were also Knights of the Golden Fleece and bore arms including the three green lions.

Part 2 of the arms shows the arms of the former municipality of Perk, granted by Royal Decree in 1968 as Van keel (rood) met een dwarsbalk van zilver, getralied van lazuur in de vorm van 4 schuinkruisen. These are the arms of the Van Steelant family, Barons of Perk in the XVIIIth century.

Part 3 of the arms recalls the former municipality of Melsbroek. The arms of Melsbroek, granted by Royal Decree in 1956, were made after a municipal seal dated 1698. The municipal website shows a small image, to be seen in a larger size on the website of the Medal Cabinet of the Royal Library in Brussels, of a jeton (brass "coin", diameter 28 mm) that belonged to Antoine de Locquenghien, Intendant of the Canal (1631). The lion on the field ermine is shown on the fist and fourth quarters of the arms depicted on the jeton. The Locquenghien were lords of Melsbroek from the early XVIth century to the early XVIIIth century.

Arnaud Leroy, Pascal Vagnat, Jan Mertens & Ivan Sache, 27 November 2007