Wapen terschelling

Coat of arms of Terschelling

The coat of arms of Terschelling is also very colorful. How did this coat of arms come into being and what is its history?

We follow the description of Wikipedia, which writes the following about the Coat of Arms of Terschelling:

"The oldest known description of the coat of arms of Terschelling dates from the 16th century. It concerns a map entitled Beschrijvinghe van Schellingerland by Sybrandt Hanssen. On this map, the coat of arms is depicted as a silver weapon with a green tree on it, heraldic left is a red lion and heraldic right a blue dragon.

100 Years later the coat of arms was depicted mirrored on a collection box from the village of Midsland. They do have the same colors as the oldest coat of arms. There is also a coat of arms known from 1666 on which the dragon has a head and mane of gold, similar to the coat of arms of the Van der Schelling family.

Oosterend used a seal in 1596 that shows the animals but not the tree. In the 18th century a seal was actually used, however the animals were missing (Midsland). Westeinde is said to have used a seal in 1661 that shows the lion on top of the dragon, without the tree.

The Fryske Rie foar Heraldiek comes up with new historical facts about the coat of arms of Terschelling in 1961. These also come forward in an article by Van Lennep. He published an article about the coat of arms and the flag of Terschelling in 1962. Some historical facts that come forward are:

The coat of arms of Terschelling originates from the coat of arms of the Van der Schelling family, this coat of arms has been known since the 15th century.
The oldest known member of this family was Tymen van der Scellinc, he was ruling in Amsterdam from 1408 till 1412.
On 15th century tombstones, the coat of arms was depicted with a tree, accompanied by a dragon and a lion. The lion was on heraldic right, left for the viewer.

The Schaep family carries the coat of arms in the 17th century, this time the colors are known: the shield is silver, the tree has natural color and the lion and dragon are red.

Over time the dragon changes color, in the coat of arms of Christyne van der Schelling it was described as green/red. In a book about the Aldermen of Amsterdam (the family had several) the dragon is blue.

Changing colors
In contrast to the changing colors of the dragon, the colors of the tree and the lion have always been fixed. Additionally, it was certain that the coats of arms of the Van der Schelling family and those of the island were in a way, connected. 1963 was the year in which de Fryske Rie advised the municipality of Terschelling to give the dragon one color. A blue dragon was proposed. However, that year a notice of objection was submitted to the Dutch High Council of Nobility by H.A. Stiphout from Amsterdam. He pleaded for a two-colored dragon.

Generally it is assumed that the flag of a municipality is derived from its coat of arms. In this case that would mean that the color yellow should be of some importance, since this is in fact the third highest track on the flag. In the proposal, only the fruits in the tree are yellow. These only appear on a sacrament cup from Hoorn, which leads to the conclusion that there must have been another yellow area. This should then be the two-colored dragon.

Both the municipality and the High Council of Nobility ignored this plea, so the new coat of arms was granted with only the yellow fruits.

New Coat of Arms

The first coat of arms of Terschelling granted by the High Council of Nobility had the following description granted on June 26, 1816:

'Of lazure (blue) laden with a tree, on whose right side a sea monster and on whose left a dog is standing up, all of gold.'

On September 27, 1963, Terschelling received a new coat of arms, with the following description:

"In silver a leafed tree of sinopel, fertilized of gold, planted on a ground, also of sinopel and accompanied on the right by an ascending lion of throat, on the left by an ascending dragon of azure, both of which clasp the trunk of the tree with both claws. The shield covered with a golden crown of 3 leaves and 2 pearls."

The new coat of arms of Terschelling is silver with on it a green tree, with golden fruits. The tree stands on a ground, which is also green. On the, for the viewer, left side is a red climbing lion. On the other side of the tree is a blue climbing dragon. Both animals hold the tree with their claws. The shield is covered by a golden crown of 3 leaves with 2 pearls between them

(Courtesy of source Wikipedia)

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