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Wûnseradiel (The Netherlands)

Fryslân province

Last modified: 2018-12-15 by rob raeside
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Wonseradeel municipality Shipmate Flagchart :
adopted 19 Apr 1955; design: Kl. Sierksma

Other Wûnseradiel pages:
  • See list of villages below
See also:

Wûnseradiel municipality

Population (1 Jan 2003): 11.921; area: 320,61 km² (over half is water). Settlements (Frisian name first): Wytmarsum (Witmarsum) (seat), Allingawier, Arum, Burchwert (Burgwerd), Dedzjum (Dedgum), Eksmoarre (Exmorra), Ferwâlde (Ferwoude), Gaast, Hartwert (Hartwerd), Hichtum, Hieslum, Kimswert (Kimswerd), Koarnwert (Cornwerd), Koarnwertersân (Kornwerderzand), Lollum, Longerhou (Longerhouw), Makkum, Parregea (Parrega), Piaam, Penjum (Pingjum), Skettens (Schettens), Skraard (Schraard), Skuzum (Idsegahuizum), Surch (Zurich), Tsjerkwert (Tsjerkwerd), Wûns (Wons).
In 1987 the municipality changed its name from Wonseradeel to Wûnseradiel (the Frisian name).
Wonseradeel/Wûnseradiel is in the west of Friesland; when travelling from Noordholland by car or bike one has to cross the 'Afsluitdijk' (enclosuredam) and one enters Friesland in this municipality. There are 27 villages and each village has its own flag, derived from the municipal flag.
This flag was adopted 19 Apr 1955. Its simple design is full of symbolism (according to Sierksma, Nederlands Vlaggenboek, 1962) and connects to a flag on a seal of 1270. The white stripe symbolized the old stream Marne, which in olden times cut the municipality in two. A modern road cuts the municipality also in two - and horizontally too! <one wonders whether present-day designers are obeying very old rules:-)
On the occasion of a parade for Queen Juliana and Prince Bernhard on 7 Apr 1962 a special municipal banner was adopted for use, with three tails and covered with the red deer of the municipal arms.
Regarding the village flags one can get some idea from the village Coats of Arms on Ralf Hartemink's site:
and click the separate villages. I saw only two, so this is a wild guess: somehow on all flags there will be a horizontal or diagonal bar to accentuate the duality of the municipality.
Jarig Bakker, 5 September 1999

Wûnseradiel Coat of Arms

[Wûnseradiel Coat of Arms] from Ralf Hartemink's site.

Granted 25 Mar 1818. According to tradition this deer was chased from Zevenwouden (southeast Fryslân) all the way to Wûnseradiel, where it was caught.

Wonseradeel banner

Wonseradeel: simple banner according to the municipal flag (blue with a narrow white horizontal stripe in the center), with over all a red jumping deer according to the municipal arms. Purchased by the municipal council.
Source: Vexilla Nostra nr. 6 (1968).
Jarig Bakker, 8 Sep 2003

Village flags

Wonseradeel's official name is Wûnseradiel, Fryslân province. AFAIK the official names of the villages are still Dutch, although "Hollandse" municipal civil servants wanted all names to be Frisian, but due to the Zuricher resistance (fear of Swiss loss of interest) the names remained Dutch.
The project of villageflags for all 27 villages has been described in a booklet of the municipality, presented house-by-house, and in an article in the Frisian magazine "It Beaken" (edited by the "Fryske Akademy")

In spring 1955 the municipal council of Wûnseradiel decided to celebrate Liberation Day (5 May) in a special way: to present every village with its own Coat of Arms and flag. Mr. K. Sierksma was invited to design the flags.
The villages were grouped according to geographical location and means of income:
1. Seven meadowvillages around the old lakes: Greonterp (now part of Wymbritseradiel), Tsjerkwerd, Dedgum, Allingawier, Exmorra, Hieslum, Parrega.
2. Seven villages along the old seadike: Ferwoude, Gaast, Idsegahuizum, Piaam, Makkum, Cornwerd, Zurich.
3. Eight inland meadowvillages:
a. central villages: Wons, Schraard, Longerhouw, Schettens
b. villages on the municipal border: Lollum, Hichtum, Burgwerd, Hartwerd.
4. Four agricultural villages: Kimswerd, Pingjum, Arum, Witmarsum
5. And the new village: Kornwerderzand (on the Enclosuredam)

The municipal flag is: Three horizontal stripes of blue and white, proportioned 5:2:5.
The white stripe symbolizes the division of the municipal territory. In ancient times the mighty river Marne split the municipality in two, from Bolswrd city towards the Waddenzee, running between Witmarsum and Pingjum, through the bed of the present "Bidlersfeart" (Beggars canal) towards Dijksterburen, where it streamed into the Waddenzee/Zuiderzee. In those days two "grietmannen" (mayors) ruled over Outer-Wonseradeel and Inner-Wonseradeel (outside and within the dikes).
The Marne-river became a fertile region. Its bed narrowed to a small canal or ditch. The division of Wûnseradiel however remained the same: meadows and agricultural fields. A new division was created by the construction of the National Route Numéro 43. Nevertheless the municipality retained its unique character.

Village flags and -Coats of Arms.
The flags were mostly designed some ten years before the village-arms. The designs were inspired by the division mentioned above; in some Coats of Arms some exceptions were made. For Coats of Arms several arms were used of families, who had lived on old "states" or "stinsen" (fortified stately houses).
Flags contain diagonal stripes for meadows, and rectangles for agriculture (Wûnseradiel is the only Frisian municipality split into a
"gershoeke" (grass) and a "bouhoeke" (clay)); furthermore some elements will explain itself, like clover, corn-ears, and images of animals. To underline the municipal belonging all flags have a narrow vertical strip at the hoist with the colors of the municipal flag.

The villageflags of the first group - meadowlands around the old lakes: The old lakes were the Makkumer, Parregeaster, Sins-, and some other tiny lakes; all have been made dry. Their white waves, restlessly attacking the reedbanks, have disappeared; the white swanflowers floating on the water have made place for lushy meadows. The sky remained blue in mild springs. Green the grass grows in the meadows; red is the color of thriving weedss on black peat-soil. The red waterlilyleaf on the red field symbolizes the old lakes. Three villages have been sorted in pairs with the same colors, as they are very often mentioned as twin-villages. Only Greonterp is on its own.

The second division of the Wûnseradiel villages concerns the villages along the dike against the old Zuiderzee, now IJsselmeer/Waddenzee. Four of those villages were protected by the "Polderboard" "Westergo's IJsselmeerdijken" - represented by the diagonal stripe from hoist-bottom to fly-top. The other villages were protected by the Polderboard "Der Vijf Deelen Zeedijken Buitendijks" - symbolized by a diagonal stripe from hoist-top to fly-bottom. Since the construction of the Enclosuredam the southern villages don't feel the threat of the sea as much as the villages north of the Enclosuredam. The colors change in the flags from soft green to full red.
In Idsegahuizum the colors are blue and yellow, signifying that it is an agricultural village (yellow = corn) amongst grassy villages. Makkum's Coat of Arms (a golden mermaid rising from the green sea) is represented on the flag by the colors yellow and green.
The last village Zurich calls out DANGER with burning red as the storm gathers the water for an attack against the dike.
Source: "It Beaken", Magazine of the Frisian Academy, Dec 1969.
Jarig Bakker, 24 Sep 2003