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Annapolis, Maryland (U.S.)

Anne Arundel County

Last modified: 2018-07-26 by rick wyatt
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[Flag of Annapolis] 2:3 (usage) image(s) by permission of David B. Martucci
image(s) from American City Flags, Raven 9-10 (2002-2003), courtesy of the North American Vexillological Association, which retains copyright.


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Current Flag

Text and image(s) from American City Flags, Raven 9-10 (2002-2003), courtesy of the North American Vexillological Association, which retains copyright. Image(s) from American City Flags by permission of David B. Martucci.

Design

The flag of Annapolis is white with the royal badge of Queen Anne (1665-1714) occupying most of the center of the field. The badge consists of a purple thistle and red Tudor rose with a white center appearing to issue from the same stem, the thistle on the hoist side with two of its distinctive dark green serrated leaves, and the rose on the fly side, with two dark green rose leaves. Centered above the flowers is a royal crown in gold with a red bonnet, lined at the bottom in ermine. The official description of the crown in the ordinance of adoption describes the jewels on the crown: …a large green stone at the peak, one large purple stone, two small green stones, two small red stones and twenty-four small white stones…. The placement of these gems is not specified, except for the first, but it appears that the colored stones grace the lower part of the crown, while the white stones (perhaps pearls), encrust the cross-arch over the bonnet. Below the entire badge is a heraldic scroll in yellow, with red lining and the Latin motto in black VIXI LIBER ET MORIAR (“I Have Lived Free and Will Die So”).
John M Purcell, American City Flags, Raven 9-10, 2002-2003

Symbolism

The city is named for Queen Anne of Great Britain, who granted the original charter to Annapolis in 1708. The thistle represents Scotland, and the rose, a united England (after the fifteenth century “War of the Roses” between the House of Lancaster—the red rose, and the House of York—the white rose). The motto was chosen by the flag’s designer as “one that might be acceptable”.
John M Purcell, American City Flags, Raven 9-10, 2002-2003

Selection

The city council asked the Peggy Steward Tea Party Chapter of the Daughters of the American Revolution to design a flag.
Flag adopted: 11 January 1965 (official)
John M Purcell, American City Flags, Raven 9-10, 2002-2003

Designer

Anna Dorsey Linder.
John M Purcell, American City Flags, Raven 9-10, 2002-2003

More about the Flag

The original flag hung under glass in council chambers. When the production costs of additional flags were found to be prohibitively expensive because of the many colors on the flag, the colors of the gemstones on the crown were changed to black in practice.
John M Purcell, American City Flags, Raven 9-10, 2002-2003

The white background of the flag was the militia flag selected by Sir Francis Nicholson, the royal governor responsible for Annapolis becoming the capital.
Joe McMillan, 16 August 2000

There are actually a number of variations of the Tudor rose, including that shown on the Annapolis flag (which is really a small white rose centered on a larger red rose) as well as a version that has each of the five petals divided into red and white halves by a line radiating from the center.
Joe McMillan, 7 January 2002

The rose depicted on the arms of Annapolis sometimes appears to be red with a white dot on each petal. The actual Tudor Rose has red and white petals interleaved, representing the Houses of Lancaster (red rose) and York (white rose). These were the two claimants to the English throne, both branches of the Plantagenet family. Henry Tudor, the founder of the dynasty which bears his name and who ruled England as Henry VII (and who was himself Welsh!), was the last claimant of the Lancastrian line. He married Elizabeth of York, the last of that branch of the family, and Henry adopted the Tudor rose with its interleaved petals as the badge of his new dynasty in order to demonstrate the new unity of England. The Lancastrians and the Yorkists had fought a bitter civil war in England during much of the 14th and 15th Centuries, known as the Wars of the Roses because of their respective badges.
Ron Lahav, 6 January 2002