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Edam (The Netherlands)

Edam-Volendam municipality, Noord-Holland province

Last modified: 2017-11-11 by andrew weeks
Keywords: edam | bull: black |
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[Edam oldest flag] image by Jarig Bakker, 23 Nov 2003

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Edam oldest flag

For this small Zuiderzee-town in Noord-Holland two ancient flags have been reported:
Red with a black bull with on its neck and behind a white 5-pointed star. Source: "Flags of the World 1669-1670"- a seventeenth century manuscript - edited by Kl. Sierksma, 1966.
Sierksma comments: The flag of this Zuyder Zee town is based on its arms, yet deviates from them in a peculiar way. The Sketchbook (No. 54: "Di Edam") does not show the stars placed, as here, in the bull's neck and rump, but has a 6-pointed star immediately behind the animal's tail.
In the coat-of-arms there are three stars in the chief of the escutcheon.
The flag is not found in the other sources.
Jarig Bakker, 23 Nov 2003

Edam old flag

[Edam old flag] image by Jarig Bakker, 23 Nov 2003

Edam is a small town on the IJsselmeer, in the municipality of Edam-Volendam.
In the Napolitan manuscript of 1667 there is a flag of Edam described by Sierksma, in Nederlands Vlaggenboek, 1962 [sie62]: "Red, with a black standing bull, with a six-pointed yellow star.
This flag is not official. It occurs in the oldest known illustrated flagbook (page 54) made by a Napolitan. The flag is a simplification of the Coat of Arms. The flag is now completely forgotten; a flag of two equally high stripes red - green is being used."
Regarding the origin of the bull: the Edammers say that it ran away from Monnickendam to Edam.
Jarig Bakker, 5 Jun 2003

It is said that the Edammers were fighting like mad bulls in 1219 during the siege of Damiate, hence the bull in the arms.
Cor Veth, 4 Sep 2005

Flag as described and depicted in Sierksma's Nederlands Vlaggenboek, 1962 [sie62].
Jarig Bakker, 23 Nov 2003

Is this where the famous Edammer cheese is coming from?
Željko Heimer, 23 Nov 2003

At least the cheese is named after Edam, not necessarily produced there. It is a nice little town functioning like an open-air museum. On the "Kaasmarkt" is the "Kaaswaag" where cheeses were weighed, built in 1778, and where you can buy "Edammertjes" for a lot more money than in the local supermarket.
Jarig Bakker, 23 Nov 2003


Edam 1962 flag

[Edam 1962 flag] image by Jarig Bakker, 23 Nov 2003

Sierksma, in Nederlands Vlaggenboek, 1962 [sie62] writes: "a flag of two equally high stripes red - green is being used."
Jarig Bakker, 23 Nov 2003