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Nava de la Asunción (Municipality, Castilla y León, Spain)

Last modified: 2015-01-17 by ivan sache
Keywords: nava de la asunción |
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Flag of Nava de la Asunción - Image by Ivan Sache, 12 May 2011

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Presentation of Nava de la Asunción

The municipality of Nava de la Asunción (3,024 inhabitants in 2010, therefore the 8th most populous municipality in the province; 8,315 ha; municipal website) is located in the west of Segovia Province, 40 km from Segovia.

Nava de la Asunción was part of the Community of the Village and Land of Coca, formed at the end of the 11th century; in the 13th century, the Community included 17 villages stretching over c. 300 sq. km. Accordingly, Nava was known as La Nava de Coca until 1773, when granted the title of villa by Charles III, under the amended name of Nava de la Asunción, referring to the Assumption Virgin, the village's patron saint.
Nava de la Asunción is the birth place of Sebastián de Arévalo y Torres (1619-1704), Bishop of Mondoñedo and El Burgo de Osma, locally known as the "charitable bishop"; the benefactor of his birth village, the bishop offered silver candelabra to the parish church and sponsored in 1683 the building of the fountain still known as Caño del Obispo (The Bishop's Waterpipe).

Ivan Sache, 12 May 2011

Symbols of Nava de la Asunción

The flag and arms (image) of Nava de la Asunción are prescribed by a Decree adopted on 19 April 1994 by the Segovia Provincial Government, signed on 25 April 1994 by the President of the Government, and published on 3 May 1994 in the official gazette of Castilla y León, No. 65 (text).
The symbols are described as follows:

Flag: Quadrangular flag, with proportions 2:3, quartered per saltire green and yellow. In the middle of the flag is placed the crowned municipal coat of arms, in full colors.
Coat of arms: Quarterly, 1. and 4. Azure a castle argent flaming, 2. and 3. Or a Scots pine (pino albar, lit., "white pine") eradicated proper, a bordure argent eight saltires sable. The shield surmounted with a Royal Spanish crown.

The symbols (presentation) were designed by Agencia Heráldica (Segovia), commissioned in 1991 by the Municipal Council; the opposition group would have preferred a public contest. Accordingly, the symbols were not unanimously adopted.
The green color recalls the etymology of Nava, a nava being "a green and wet plain". Yellow represents the Land of Coca.
The shield encompasses the most representative elements of the history, toponymy and monuments of the village:
- the Community of the Village and Land of Coca is represented by the pine eradicated, taken from its coat of arms;
- the local forests and pinewoods are also represented by the pine eradicated;
- the Viscounty of Nava de la Asunción, granted in 1880 to the Oñate family, is represented by the Oñate arms, "Azure a castle flaming eight saltires".
Here again, the municipal opposition group questioned the proposal, accepting the pine but rejecting the other elements.

The Royal Academy of History did not approve the use of the Oñate arms on the proposed arms, arguing that the Viscounty title granted at the end of the 18th century was not a mark of lordship. The origin of the bordure with the saltires was not given, having, seemingly, been taken from the Oñate arms; if so, the bordure should be used only around the Oñate arms, not around the whole shield. Most important, such a bordure, of Castilian origin, was never used on municipal arms - probably because the municipalities were once not permitted to use their own arms; the modern use of such a bordure would be completely anomalous and historically erroneous.
The Academy suggested to remove the flames from the castle and the bordure, as well, as: "Quarterly, 1. and 4. Azure a castle argent, 2. and 3. Or a Scots pine proper. The shield surmounted with the Royal Spanish crown".
The proposed flag is acceptable, provided the arms are modified as suggested (Boletín de la Real Academia de la Historia, 1996, 193, 1: 184).

Ivan Sache, 12 May 2011