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La Serna del Monte (Municipality, Community of Madrid, Spain)

Last modified: 2016-05-22 by ivan sache
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Flag of La Serna del Monte - Image by Ivan Sache, 26 July 2015

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Presentation of La Serna del Monte

The municipality of La Serna del Monte (94 inhabitants in 2014; 544 ha; municipal website) is located in the north of the Community of Madrid, 80 km of Madrid.
La Serna del Monte was in the Middle Ages part of Braojos, among the possessions of the Mendoza. In the 17th century, the villagers erected a chapel dedicated to St. Andrew; after many lawsuits, they were granted in the early 18th century by a Papal Bull their religious autonomy, separating from Braojos.

Ivan Sache, 26 July 2015

Symbols of La Serna del Monte

The flag and arms of La Serna del Monte are prescribed by a Decree adopted on 6 May 1993 by the Government of the Community of Madrid and published on 27 May 1993 in the official gazette of the Community of Madrid, No. 124, pp. 3-4 (text), and on 15 June 1993 in the Spanish official gazette, No. 142, p. 18,315 (text).
The symbols are described as follows:

Flag: In proportions 2:3. The panel quartered per saltire, 1. and 3. Green with a red bend outlined in yellow, 2. and 4. Yellow. In the yellow triangles are placed red saltires.
Coat of arms: Per pale, 1. Quarterly per saltire, 1. and 3. Vert a bend gules fimbriated or, 2. and 4. Or charged with the legend "AVE MARÍA GRATIA PLENIA" in letters sable, 2. Argent a St. Andrew's cross (or a saltire coupé) gules [Crown not mentioned].

The Royal Academy of History validated the proposed coat of arms, which features the arms of the Dukes of the Infantado (Mendoza de la Vega), once lords of the place.
The Academy rejected the proposed flag, made of the arms of the Mendoza de la Vega, without the legend, superimposed with the municipal coat of arms, which includes the very same arms. Such a redundancy cannot be accepted.
[Boletín de la Real Academia de la Historia, 1993, 190:2, 331]

Diego Hurtado de Mendoza y Figueroa (1415/1417-1479), the elder son of Íñigo López de Mendoza, First Marquis of Santillana, was made Duke of the Infantado (full title, "Duque de las Cinco Villas del Estado del Infantado") in 1475; subsequently, the Dukes of the Infantado were made first-rank Grandees of Spain, and were therefore allowed to wear their hat in the presence of the king. Íñigo de Arteaga y Martín (b. 1941) is the 19th Duke of the Infantado.
"Vert a bend gules fimbriated or" are the oldest known arms of Mendoza; subsequently modified several times, the arms always included a red bend on a green field. The arms quartered per saltire were introduced by the first Marquis of Santillana and appear on a seal dated 1440; the marquis quartered his father's arms (Mendoza) with his mother's arms (de la Vega). His descendants were known as Mendoza de Guadalajara or Mendoza de l'Ave María. In the representations of these arms, the first quarter is inscribed with "AVE MARÍA" while the third quarter is inscribed with "PLENA GRATIA" (or, at least "GRATIA").
[José Luis García de Paz (UAM), Los poderosos Mendoza website]

Ivan Sache, 26 July 2015