Last modified: 2016-12-20 by ivan sache
Keywords: cumbres de enmedio |
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Flag of Cumbres de Enmedio - Image from the Símbolos de Huelva website, 21 August 2016
The municipality of Cumbres de Enmedio (54 inhabitants in 2015, therefore the least populated municipality in the province; 1,400 ha; municipal website) is located 140 km north of Huelva on the border with Extremadura (Province of Badajoz). The village is crossed by the old Royal Transhumance Road, which connects the three villages of Cumbres Mayores, Cumbres de San Bartolomé, and Cumbres de Enmedio.
Cumbres de Enmedio was established in the 13th century after the Christian reconquest. The location of the village on the disputed border with Portugal prevented its development; moreover, it was deemed too small to be protected by a castle. Cumbres de Enmedio was granted the title of villa in 1639 by Philip IV, but could hardly pay for the privilege; in 1752, the villagers still had to pay an annuity of 855 reales. The population peaked to 251 in the middle of the 20th century.
Because of its reduced population, Cumbres de Enmedio is managed by an Open Council, the assembly of all villagers aged 18 or more.
Ivan Sache, 21 August 2016
The flag and arms of Cumbres de Enmedio, adopted on 26 September 1995, rejected on 27 June 1996 by the Royal Academy of Córdoba, amended on 4 September 1997 and eventually validated on 30 October 1997 by the Academy, are prescribed by Decree No. 10, adopted on 27 January 1998 by the Government of Andalusia and published on 24 February 1998 in the official gazette of Andalusia, No. 22 (text). This was confirmed by a Resolution adopted on 30 November 2004 by the Directorate General of the Local Administration and published on 20 December 2004 in the official gazette of Andalusia, No. 246, pp. 28,986-29,002 (text).
The symbols are described as follows:
Flag: Rectangular, in proportions 11 x 18. Yellow cloth with seven red bends superimposed with a narrow black cross. Charged in the center with the local coat of arms.
Coat of arms: Or two noble keys gules in fess counterplaced in base a boar's head sable langued gules armed argent. The shield surmounted by a Royal crown closed.
The symbols were proposed by Juan José Antequera.
The coat of arms is based on a seal dated 1418, kept in the General Archives of the Archbishopric of Seville; surrounded by the writing "Sello del Conceio de las Cumbres de Medio", the seal features the keys and the boar's head.
The Royal Academy of Córdoba rejected the proposed symbols on 12 July 1996, arguing that "the supporting memoir does not provide evidence for the allegations it contains". The Academy recognizes the suitability of the design but would like to see an image of the historical seal.
The designer submitted a rebuttal on 7 October 1996. The seal, dated 1418, is the oldest known municipal seal in the province. However, tracking municipal seals is tedious because only rare examples have been kept, often in a very bad state of conservation, in the provincial or municipal archives. The seal of Cumbres de Enmedio was found, most probably by chance, in 1978, by Andrés Ferera de Codes, then Chief Archivist of the Archbishop's Palace in Seville, in a file of unclassified documents labelled "Varios" (Miscellaneous). The document, whose left corner was spoiled by humidity, is dated 9 September 1418. This is a petition submitted by the villagers in search of funds for the rebuilding of the parish church.
Juan José Antequera proposed hypotheses for the explanation of the coat of arms. The keys could highlight the strategic location of the place, while the boar could symbolize firmness in the defence of the place. The keys could also represent the two villages of Cumbre de San Bartolomé and Cumbres Mayores, Cumbres de Enmedio ("in the middle") being located inbetween.
[Juan José Antequera. Principios de transmisibilidad en las heráldicas officiales de Sevilla, Córdoba y Huelva]
Ivan Sache, 21 August 2016