Coat of arms of Novgorod: description, photo, meaning
Great Novgorod stands out among all the cities of the country. Unique history, amazing sights, and objects - there is something to be surprised at and something to admire.
No less interesting to anyone who is interested in the history of the city and the emblem of Veliky Novgorod. Officially, it was approved in 1871 by Catherine II.
Novgorod coat of arms
The official approval of the mark was preceded by many important events related to the heraldry of the city. An exact copy of it from the time of Ancient Russia was not preserved, but there were several references to the fact that at different times animals that were traditional to Russia were depicted on it. These are foxes, bears, fishes. They were taken as a basis for the approval of the heraldic sign.
The description of the coat of arms of Veliky Novgorod since the time of Catherine the Second is as follows: the sign is traditionally made in the form of a shield. Its surface is divided into two parts of different sizes. The lower part is blue.It is an image of four fish, turned in pairs one to another. From time immemorial, fish symbolized fishing, and the more they were placed on the sign, the more developed and voluminous their fishing was. Accordingly, the image of four fish indicated that a lot of fish were always caught in the Novgorod lands. The color of the field indicated the presence of the city’s own water resources.
The upper margin in terms of color and number of elements is more interesting. On the surface of silver are the following symbols:
- Golden chair with high back, which represents the throne of the monarch.
- On the seat - red (scarlet) pillow.
- On the back of the chair there is a golden candlestick in which three candles are lit.
- On the sides of the throne is a pair of supporters - black bears.
Bears are the most common heraldic symbols of cities in many countries. In this case, they serve as a reference to the glorious past of the city and the heroism of its inhabitants. The golden cross and scepter symbolize heavenly and earthly power.
The history of the city is full of mysteries and unsolved mysteries.One of them is the appearance of the coat of arms of Veliky Novgorod. The meaning of each of the depicted elements is understandable, but who united them and why exactly these signs were chosen is not clear.
What is a coat of arms? So called symbolic images that made up according to certain rules. They characterize and represent a person, institution, city or state. The coats of arms were used during the time of Ancient Russia and were then seal-bulla.
Since the coats of arms appeared later than the seals, historians assumed that they became the basis for the creation of a heraldic symbol. But academician V.L. Yanin, who conducted many years of research on this issue, does not agree with this statement. He writes that on none of the 800 seals examined and analyzed by him, there is nothing like that which would become the basis for creating a coat of arms. Most often there are images of a rider, a foot soldier with a spear, a lion, a seeing bird and the Savior Almighty. All these are signs of the five Novgorod ends, which even then tried to unite into a city-wide emblem.
When Novgorod came under the rule of Ivan the Terrible, the city assembly was liquidated and the emblems became unclaimed.The new emblem that appeared after a while was completely different: there were images of two fishes, a leopard and a bear. Most likely, they became the basis for the creation of a new coat of arms of Veliky Novgorod. Of course, each symbol should be viewed from the perspective of historical events.
When the Romanov dynasty came to power, the Novgorod emblem was again refined and acquired a slightly modified look. Changes were made several times until the sign was approved by the Decree of Catherine II.
Any hint of religion or monarchy during the times of the Soviet Union was necessarily excluded or changed. The change also affected the heraldic sign of the ancient city. The photo of the coat of arms of the Great Novgorod of the time of the USSR shows that the image of the throne disappeared from the sign, as it symbolized the overthrown monarchy. The color of the top cover has also changed - it has become red. In addition, the number of fish has decreased by half.
To make the image of bears not look ridiculous, they put the figure 859 between them - the year, which is considered to be the time of the founding of the city. Appeared on the surface of the heraldic sign and new symbols - patterns and a golden star.Although the rule of tinctures was observed, the main thing was lost: the connection of the coat of arms with the city’s more than thousand-year history.
Heraldic sign restoration
When the new history of the country began, the time has come to recreate the heraldry of many cities in Russia. Were restored flag with the emblem of Veliky Novgorod. The basis of the new image was the classic sign of the 18th century, the highest granted by Catherine II.
Unfortunately, there were misunderstandings. So, on the approved coat of arms of Veliky Novgorod there were no images of fish on a blue background. Novgorodians were not indifferent to this and presented relevant requirements, which were satisfied after a few years - the canonical image was returned to the sign.
Interpretation of characters
There are several interpretations of symbols of the coat of arms of the city of Veliky Novgorod. As for the throne chair, then the opinions are similar - it is a sign of royal power, supported by a scepter. But what can be meant by fish and bears? One of Novgorod historians, V.A. Varentsov, binds the symbols of animals with the cult of this beast that took place at that time. Slavs believed that bears were magical animals: they represented health, well-being. And the bear was a symbol of power and strength.
The symbolism of fish has a double meaning and represents both the rich catches of local rivers, and serves as a symbol of Jesus Christ. How is this related to God? If you take the first letters written in Greek and read them in the column “Jesus Christ, God’s Son, Lord”, then “ikhtyus” will be formed. This word means "fish." Because of the persecutions, the first Christians were forced to conceal their faith, which is why they used the fish sign as a secret symbol known only to the initiated. That is why in many temples you can find the sign of fish.
Various inconsistencies occur in hermetic work. They are also revealed on the coat of arms of Veliky Novgorod. For the transfer of color in heraldry, enamel and metals (gold, silver) are used. Enamel is used in only five colors - black, magenta, green, blue and red. Putting metal on top of metal and enamel on a similar material is strictly prohibited by the rules of heraldry. But this important rule in the creation of the Novgorod badge was broken, as evidenced by the images of a candlestick, scepter, cross and golden chair on an azure background.