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Florianópolis, Santa Catarina (Brazil)

Last modified: 2021-12-11 by ian macdonald
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SC (Brazil)] image by Joseph McMillan, 16 January 1999

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The municipality of Florianópolis (500,973 inhabitants in 2019, therefore the second most populated municipality in the state); 67,541 ha) is the capital of Santa Catarina state. The municipality is mostly composed of Santa Catarina Island, which is connected to the island by the Hercílio Luz bridge built from 1920 to 1922.

Florianópolis was established, as Nossa Senhora do Desterro, in 1673 by the pioneer Francisco Dias Velho (c. 1622-1687), being therefore the second oldest settlement in Santa Catarina after Laguna. The name of the colony, soon shortened to Desterro ("Exile") refers to the flight into Egypt to the Holy Family.
Desterro was elevated to the capital of Santa Catarina state in 1823, which boosted its development. Emperor Pedro II paid a one-month official visit to the town in 1845.

Desterro was renamed to Florianópolis on 1 October 1894. The new name was proposed by Hercílio Luz (1860-1924), President of Santa Catarina (1899-1898, 1918-1922, 1922-1924), as a tribute to Floriano Peixoto (1839-1895), 2nd President of Brazil (1891-1894).
The name change stirred up a controversy, still vivid today. Known as the Iron Marshal, Floriano Peixoto suppressed the Federalist Revolution that had broke out in Rio Grande do Sul against the Republican government and had spread to Santa Catarina and Paraná. After the reconquest of the Santa Catarina island, the Federalist stronghold, Floriano Peixoto ordered the execution of 185 political prisoners in the fortress of Santa Cruz de Anhatomirim. Accordingly, several inhabitants of Florianópolis consider as "dubious" the tribute paid to the Iron Marshal while other consider that he deserves it since he "liberated" Santa Catarina from southern "invaders".
Like several Brazilian town, Florianópolis is known under a nickname, Floripa, referring to flowers ("flores") rather than to cumbersome Floriano Peixoto. Not everyone, however, would agree with the renaming of the town to Floripa.
Floripamanha, 8 March 2010

Floripa's must famous child and inhabitant must be tennis player Gustavo "Guga" Kuerten (b. 1976), where he founded a philanthropic association in support of children and disabled people.
Winner of 20 titles during his career, Guga was ATP ranked No. 1 player for 43 cumulated weeks in 2001. He won, quite unexpectedly, the 1997 French Open, receiving the trophy from Björn Borg and Guillermo Vilas. His subsequent triumphs in 2000 and 2001 confirmed his privileged connection with Roland-Garros stadium and the French public, who cherished his unusual offensive baseline play and his charisma. Guga gained also high esteem in his country, being named Athlete of the Year in 2000 and 2001

Ivan Sache, 3 November 2021

Description of the Flag

Florianópolis is the capital of the state of Santa Catarina, in southern Brazil, on the island of the same name (Santa Catarina, not Florianópolis). At the site http:// is the following information on the flag and arms:

The flag of the Florianópolis municipality was created by law number 1409 of 17 March 1976, in the same year we were celebrating 250 years of political-administrative emancipation, for the purpose of symbolizing our municipality. Its characteristics are: a white rectangle, of 8 units by 11 units, cut by two red stripes, which are the colors of our state. These stripes are placed in the upper and lower extremities of the white rectangle, which has at the center the municipal coat of arms, created by law number 1408 of 15 March 1976, excluding the supporters of the shield.

The new coat of arms of the Florianópolis municipality is composed of a shield of Portuguese type, divided horizontally with a golden rising sun on blue field. In the base, three wavy bars of silver represent the sea. The island [of Santa Catarina] is symbolized by a golden escutcheon in the center of the shield, bordered in red and containing the Cross of the Order of Christ which represents the Azores and their people, the settlers of the island. Above the shield, there's a golden mural >crown, symbol of fortified cities as Desterro [previous name of Florianópolis--ed.] was. The coat of arms rests on a blue scroll, having at the center the word "Florianópolis, preceded by the date 1726, the year when the Municipality was founded with the rank of town and when the first municipal executive was installed, and followed by the date 1823, the year when the municipality was upgraded to the rank of city.

On the right side of the arms [as a supporter not shown on the flag--ed.] is a representation of the bandeirante Dias Velho, founder of Desterro (the old name of Florianópolis), and on the right side a representation of an officer of the Infantry Regiment of the Line of the Island of Santa Catarina, inexplicably nicknamed the "Green Belly Regiment," dressed according to the regulation uniform of the Portuguese Army.

The new coat of arms of Florianópolis was created by municipal law number 1408 of 15 March 1976, according to the suggestions of a commission composed of Professors Oswaldo Rodrigues Cabral, Vitor A. Peluso Jr., and Carlos Humberto P. Correa.

Dov Gutterman, translated by Jorge Candeias, 16 January 1999

The Cross of the Order of Christ has never been, to the best of my knowledge, a symbol of the Azores in Portuguese heraldry. It's much more connected with Madeira. Also [the association of the mural crown with a fortified cities] is quite dubious. At least in Portuguese heraldry, mural crowns are simple replacements for the previous crowns (royal or ducal), having nothing to do with fortifications.
Jorge Candeias, 16 January 1999

The flag of Florianópolis is prescribed by Municipal Law No. 1,409 promulgated on 17 March 1976.

Article A.
The flag of the municipality of Florianópolis shall have the following characteristics: A white field, of 8 x 11 units, horizontally divided by two horizontal red stripes, of O.5 unit, located 0.5 unit from the upper and lower borders, charged in the center with the coat of arms of the municipality prescribed by Law No. 1,408 promulgated on 15 March 1978, the shield's supporters excluded.
Leis Municipais database

The coat of arms of Florianópolis is prescribed by Municipal Law No. 1,408 promulgated on 15 March 1976.

Article 1.
The coat of arms prescribed in this Law shall be substituted as the coat of arms of the municipality of Florianópolis to the arms prescribed by Law No. 494 promulgated in August 1920.

Article 2.
The new municipal symbol shall have the following description: A shield of Portuguese type, of 7 x 8.5 units, divided per fess. In chief azure on the horizon line a rising sun or in base azure three fesses wavy argent inescutcheon or fimbriated gules a Cross of Christ proper. The shield surmounted by a mural crown or with three towers in the center and two half-towers at the ends filled gules and port and windows of the same. The shield supported dexter by pioneer Francisco Dias Velho, adapted from his symbolic statue exhibited at Ipiranga Museum the right hand applied on the mouth of a blunderbuss and the left hand supporting the shield, sinister by an officer of the Infantry Regiment of Santa Catarina Island clad in the ceremony uniform provisioned by the 1788 plan, composed of a biron sable with ornaments argent, a military gown azure ornamented with epaulettes argent, collar and cannons gules, a vest azure with ornaments argent identical to those of the gown, military tie argent, military shoes azure with identical lateral ornaments argent and socks argent, the left hand applied to a sword pendant with a sheath sable supported by a belt sable with buckle argent over a fess gules, and the right hand supporting the shield. The supporters standing on a scroll azure symmetrically wavy charged in the center, argent, the word "Florianópolis" and at the ends, dexter "1726" and sinister "1823".
Leis Municipais database


Ivan Sache, 3 November 2021