Last modified: 2020-10-31 by ivan sache
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Flag of Villafranca de los Barros - Image from the municipal website (archived), 17 March 2020
The municipality of Villafranca de los Barros (12,635 inhabitants in 2019; 10,440 ha; municipal website) is located 80 km south-east of Badajoz and 50 km south of Mérida.
Villafranca de los Barros has been conitnuously inhabited since the Prehistoric times. The oldest remains, dated to the Chalcolithic (c. 1800 BC) were found in Las Cortinales. Several circular or oval pits dig in limestone and covered with plant parts have been interpreted as grain stores. A necropolis from the Bronze Age was found in Las Palomas, 3 km south of the town.
The Roman Silver Road crossed the municipal territory north-south; the Roman tile of El Villar is exhibited in the National Arheological Museum in Madrid. The Antonine Itinerary lists Perceiana, a post located 35.52 km south of Augusta Emerita (Mérida) on the road heading to Ayamonte. This matches the archeological site of Las Vegas, located on the road connecting Gijón to Seville. The post might have been asociated by a villa, but there was no Roman town in Villafranca. The scattered villas most probably depended on Mérida, a dependency which was maintained during the Visigothic period.
After the Christian rconquest of Mérida in the 13th century, the area was re-settled by the Order of Saint James. Fadrique, Master of the Order and brother of the king, granted in the middle of the 14th century the status of villa to Moncovil, which was made the seat of a commandery. The name of the town was subsequently changed to Villafranca (Freetown); while most towns called Villafranca in Spain are associated to a charter exempting the inhabitants from tax, no such a document has been found yet for Villafranca de los Barros.
For the sake of differentiation, the town was called in the 15th century Villafranca del Maestre / del Maestrazgo, in the 18th century Villafranca de Extremadura, and, in the middle of the 19th century, Villafranca de los Barros. The town was granted in 1895 the title of ciudad by Alfonso XII, upon request of the Count del Alama, born in the town.
Villafranca de los Barros was awarded the title of Music Town on 22 October 2002 during the inauguration of the newly established Assessing Council of Honors and Distinctions of the Government of Extremadura.
The musical traditions of the town were transmitted from generation to generation. Pedro Bote (1868-1930), who settled in the town at the end of the 19th century as an accounter for the local grain mill, founded and directed until his death the municipal music band and the Choral and Instrumental Society Santa Cecilia. He was succeeded by the noted folklorist Bonifacio Gil. Several music bands, choirs and dance groups subsequently emerged in the town, involving now more than 2,000 inhabitants of Villafranca.
Ivan Sache, 17 March 2020
The flag of Villafranca de los Barros (photo, vhttps://www.hoy.es/elecciones/autonomicas-municipales/provincia-badajoz/jose-manuel-rama-20190616010134-ntvo.html">photo, photo, photo, photo, photo, photo, photo) is white with the municipal coat of arms in the center and a red border charged in each angle with the municipal symbol, which is composed of a music staff with five lines and seven yellow notes arranged like a bunch of grapes.
The flag, inaugurated on 7 September 2008, was designed by Jesús Ruiz de Burgos Moreno, former President of the Sociedad Española de Vexilología, who had been contacted by the noted poetess Isabel Burguillos del Valle.
The colors are taken from the municipal arms. Red represents the town's past and Spain, while white represents future and material progress.
The municipal symbol recalls the title of "Music Town" awarded to Villafranca de los Barros and highlights grapevine as a significant local crop.
The first copy of the flag was embroidered by seven locals, Ms. Eulalia Chaparro Dorado, Antonia Hernández Flores, Fidela Romero Montero, María Hernández Flores, Joaquina García Sánchez and Dolores Sánchez Sánchez.
[EuropaPress, 11 September 2008]
The flag was adopted by the Municipal Council on 13 April 2007, unanimously but the Councillor from IU who abstained from the vote.
Nine proposals were originally submitted to the electronic votes of the inhabitants of the town. Jesús Ruiz de Burgos Moreno eventually designed an "hybrid" between the two most voted proposals.
[Hoy, 13 April 2007]
Flag proposals - Images from the municipal website, 17 March 2020
(click on the flags to get larger images)
The nine proposals were once published on the municipal website to allow citizens to vote.
No. 1: Vertically divided white-red (1:2), charged in the center with the Cross of the Order of Saint-James with the border counter-colored.
No. 2: Vertically divided (1:2), left white with a red Cross of the Order of Santiago in canton, right horizontally divided red-white-red.
No. 3: Horizontally divided in the middle, the upper half, red with the the riding knight from the coat of arms, the lower half, white with the municipal emblem.
No. 4: Horizontally divided (4:1), the upper part, red with the riding knight from the coat of arms and the municipal emblem in canton, the lower part, white.
No. 5: White with a red border, the coat of arms in the center and the municipal emblem in a white canton.
No. 6: Diagonally divided per bend sinister white-red with the coat of arms overall and the municipal emblem in canton.
No. 7: Quartered white-red (1:2) with the coat of arms overall and the municipal emblem in canton.
No. 8: Vertically divided white-red (1:3) with the coat of arms in the white part and the municipal emblem in the red part.
No. 9: Diagonally divided per bend sinister white-red with the coat of arms in canton and the municipal emblem in lower fly.
The coat of arms of Villafranca de los Barros is prescribed by Royal Decree No. 233, signed on 1 February 1982 and published on 10 February 1982 in the Spanish official gazette, No. 35, p. 3,407 (text).
The coat of arms is described as follows:
Coat of arms: Gules an armed warrior riding a horse all argent the shield charged with the Cross of the Order of Saint James sinister two armed warriors on foot all argent the shield charged with the Cross of the Order of Saint James. The canton argent the Cross gules of the aforementioned Order of Saint James.
The scene refers to an historical event involving the Commander of Villafranca. The registers of the Order of Santiago relate the martial acts of the Commanders of the Order. The coat of arms is based on such an act involving the Commander of Villafranca and his troops: "During the battle on the hills of Málaga against the Moors, the Commander of Villafranca fought together with the Commander of Hornachos. The horse of the Grand Master of the Order was killed. Accordingly, the Commander of Villafranca offered his horse to the Grand Master so that he could lead the battle.
The scene on the shield represents therefore the Grand Master riding the horse and the Commanders of Villafranca and Hornachos on foot.
[Municipal website (archived)]
Ivan Sache, 17 March 2020
Flag of CAPEX - Image by Ivan Sache, 17 March 2020
CAPEX (Club Atletismo Perceiana Extremadura) was established in 1999 in Villafranca de los Barros by Gustavo J. Castro García.
The flag of CAPEX (photo, photo, photo, photo, photo, photo) is horizontally divided blue-red-white.
Ivan Sache, 17 March 2020