Last modified: 2009-05-18 by rob raeside
Keywords: lipka tatars | tatars | poland |
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image by Chrystian Kretowicz, 14 February 2008
Part of the Polish diaspora settled in Scotland in the aftermath of the Second World War and the Soviet occupation of their country. Their organization, headquartered in Edinburgh - Lipka Tatars of the White Horde of Caledonia - has a flag described as:
"the heraldic arms in the central top position above are those of the Nalecz clan-one of the premier heraldic clans of the "old nobility" in Poland. The crossed arrows symbol on the red background was taken from the battle standard of the West Prussian komtura of the Teutonic Order, based at the ancient Crusader's castle at Mewe (now Gniew). This battle standard was captured at the Battle of Grunwald (Tannenberg) in 1410, and recorded in the Chronicles of Jan Dlugosz (the Chronicles also record the settlement of the Lipkas in Lithuania in 1397). A branch of the Lipka family later settled on their lands, at Rozgarty, just north of Mewe.More extensive information on Lipka Tatars is available at http://www.angelfire.com/jazz/ntstar/history.htm.
The crescent moon and star against the red background is the symbol of the Polish Tatars. The eagle is, of course, the Polish eagle. The term White Horde refers to the Lipka Tatars' Siberian origins, and has no racist connotations. As a consequence of the Second World War, a colony of West Prussian Lipka Tatars was established in Scotland. The thriving Lipka Tatar community in Scotland now spans four generations."