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Latvia - Coat of Arms

Last modified: 2014-04-11 by zoltán horváth
Keywords: latvia | coat of arms |
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image by Gvido Petersons, 9 April 2002


image by Zachary Harden, 15 November 2001


image by Zachary Harden, 15 November 2001



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Coat of Arms

From <www.latinst.lv>:
The Latvian national coat of arms was formed after the proclamation of an independent Latvian Republic and was specially created for its independent statehood. The national coat of arms combines symbols of Latvian national statehood as well as symbols of ancient historical districts. The sun in the upper part of the coat of arms symbolises Latvian national statehood. A stylised depiction of the sun was used as a symbol of distinction and national identity by Latvian riflemen – latviesu strelnieki – recruited into the Russian imperial army during WWI. During WWI the sun figure fashioned with 17 rays that symbolised the 17 inhabited Latvian districts. The three stars above the coat of arms embody the idea of the inclusion of historical districts (united Kurzeme – Zemgale, Vidzeme and Latgale) into a united Latvia. Culturally historical regions are also characterised by older heraldic figures, which already appeared in the 1600's. Kuzeme and Zemgale (Western Latvia and South-western Latvia) are symbolised by a red lion. The lion appears as early as 1569 in the coat of arms of the former duke of Kurzeme. Vidzeme and Latgale (North-eastern Latvia and South-eastern Latvia) are symbolised by the legendary winged silver creature with an eagle’s head, a griffin. This symbol appeared in 1566, when the territories known today as Vidzeme and Latgale had come under Polish - Lithuanian control. The Latvian artist Rihards Zarins designed the Latvian national coat of arms.
Santiago Dotor and Jarig Bakker, 13 May 2000

There are three types, all are used, some more often than others.  The big coat of arms is used on all documents the Government of Latvia sends out, signs or seen from embassies all over the world.  There are two lesser coat of arms, used by the lesser people in government.
Zachary Harden, 15 November 2001

From <www.welcome.lv>:
The coat of Arms combines symbols of Latvian national statehood (three stars, the sea and the sun) as well as symbols representing ancient historical districts: Kurzeme and Zemgale are depicted by a lion, Vidzeme and Latgale are depicted by the legendary winged silver creature with an eagle’s head, a griffin.
Dov Gutterman, 25 January 2002

I was looking on the Coat of Arms image in [neu92] and noticed that the red used in the Coat of Arms and supporter is just plain normal herladic red, while the one used for the ribbon in the national colours is the peculiar dark red. This is, IMHO, quite approprately.
Željko Heimer, 8 April 2002

Thats not right. In Coat of Arms is used one shade of red but different from "Flag red".
There are CMYK values:
FLAG Red: 25, 100, 100, 0
Coat of Arms Red: 10, 100, 100, 0, Gold: 10, 35, 90, 0, Silver: 34, 22, 23, 0, Green: 90, 20, 90, 0, Blue: 100, 55, 0, 0.
Gvido Petersons, 9 April 2002

The Album [pay00] is following this quite so (though not with the exactly the same CMYK values - where are they from?). But, the colour standardization must be a new thing, and certainly it was not so in time of preparation of the
Flaggenbuch.
Željko Heimer, 9 April 2002


Historical Coat of Arms (1918-1920)

The first coat of arms of the state of Latvia. (adopted 2 December 1918 ) was designed by professor Burkards Dzenis.
The arms in the middle of the first latvian flag with the official coat of arms presents the rising sun with a L and three stars, the historical latvian provinces of Kurzeme (Courland), Vidzeme (part of Livonia) and Latgale.
Guy Babonneau, 29 January 2006