The coat of arms of the Kingdom of the Netherlands was originally adopted in 1815 and later modified in 1907. The arms are a composite of the arms of the former Dutch Republic and the arms of the House of Nassau, it features a checkered shield with a lion grasping a sword in one hand and a bundle of arrows in the other and is the heraldic symbol of the monarch (King Willem-Alexander) and the country. The monarch uses a version of the arms with a mantle (Dutch: Koninklijk wapen) while the government of the Netherlands uses a smaller version without the mantle (cloak) or the pavilion, sometimes only the shield and crown are used (Dutch: Rijkswapen). The components of the coats of arms were regulated by Queen Wilhelmina in a royal decree of 10 July 1907, affirmed by Queen Juliana in a royal decree of 23 April 1980.
|Coat of arms of the |
Kingdom of the Netherlands
Greater (Royal) version
Middle (State) version
|Armiger||Willem-Alexander of the Netherlands|
|Adopted||10 July 1907|
23 April 1980
|Crest||Dutch royal Crown|
|Blazon||Azure, billetty Or a lion with a coronet Or armed and langued Gules holding in his dexter paw a sword Argent hilted Or and in the sinister paw seven arrows Argent pointed and bound together Or|
|Supporters||Two lions rampant Or armed and langued Gules|
|Motto||French: Je Maintiendrai|
|Other elements||The monarch places this coat of arms on a mantle gules lined with Ermine. Above the mantle is a pavilion gules again topped with the royal crown.|
|Earlier version(s)||August 24, 1815|
The blazon is as follows:
Azure, billetty Or a lion with a coronet Or armed and langued Gules holding in his dexter paw a sword Argent hilted Or and in the sinister paw seven arrows Argent pointed and bound together Or. (The seven arrows stand for the seven provinces of the Union of Utrecht.) The shield is crowned with the (Dutch) royal crown and supported by two lions Or armed and langued gules. They stand on a scroll Azure with the text (Or) "Je Maintiendrai" (pronounced [ʒə mɛ̃.tjɛ̃.dʁe], French for "I shall maintain".)
The monarch places this coat of arms on a mantle gules lined with ermine. Above the mantle is a pavilion gules again topped with the royal crown.
This version of the coat of arms has been in use since 1907 but differs only slightly from the version that was adopted in 1815. From 1815 until 1907 all the lions wore the royal crown and the supporting lions were facing.
The royal arms were adopted by the first king of The Kingdom of the Netherlands, William I, when he became king after the Congress of Vienna in 1815. As king, he adopted a coat of arms that combined elements of his family’s (Orange-Nassau) coat of arms and that of the former Dutch Republic that existed from 1581 until 1795.
From his family arms he used the azure, billetty or with a lion rampant or of Nassau (blue shield, lion, billets). The "Je Maintiendrai" motto represents the Orange family since it came into the family with the princedom of Orange as "Je Maintiendrai Châlons". These elements are also found in the arms of king William III, who was also king of England, Scotland & Ireland (1689–1702). From the arms of the former States General of the Republic of the United Provinces he took the lion with a coronet, sword and arrows. The arrows symbolize the seven provinces that made up the Republic, the sword the determination to defend their liberty, and the coronet their sovereignty. William replaced the coronet with a royal crown. In 1907, Queen Wilhelmina returned to an open coronet.
The arms of Nassau has existed since about 1250. There are two versions of the Nassau arms, representing the two main branches. This is a result of two brothers, count Walram II and count Otto I, agreeing to divide their father's (Henry II) lands between them in 1255. The line of Walram added a crown to the lion in the Nassau arms to make it different from the lion used by the line of Otto.
The kings and queens of the Netherlands are descendants of count Otto. The Grand Dukes of Luxemburg are descendants of count Walram. They also still use "Nassau" in their arms. Both lines are now extinct in the male line.
The helm and crest that can be used in the Royal arms by the male successors to the throne (and is in fact being used by some male members of the Royal Family) is: "On a (ceremonial) helmet, with bars and decoration Or and mantling Azure and Or, issuing from a coronet Or, a pair of wings joined Sable each with an arched bend Argent charged with three leaves of the lime-tree stems upward Vert".
This crest is used by the descendants of Otto and differs from the crest used by the descendants of Walram. But in the royal decree of 1815 the crest issuing from a crown on the Dutch Royal Arms was the one used by the Walram line. Why this was done is not sure. Maybe due to the "mistake" this crest was hardly used.
The crest of the Walram-line is: Between two trunks Azure billetty Or a sitting lion Or. The trunks are probably a misinterpretation of two cow horns, a crest that is frequently used in German heraldry. On the Grand Coat of Arms of the Grand Duke of Luxemburg the lion is crowned, armed and langued Gules.
The motto has been used by every "ruling" member of the Nassau family, who was also the prince of Orange since it came into the family with the Princedom of Orange in 1530. Count Henry III of Nassau-Breda, who was living in the Low Countries, was married to Claudia Orange-Châlon. Her brother, Philibert of Châlon, was the last Prince of Orange from the House of Châlon. When he died in 1530, Henry's and Claudia's son René of Nassau-Breda inherited the Princedom on condition that he used the name and coat of arms of the Châlon family. History knows him therefore as René of Châlon. With this inheritance came the "Je Maintiendrai Châlons" motto into the Nassau family. René died in 1544 without leaving a child. His cousin William of Nassau-Dillenburg inherited all of René's lands. William became William of Orange (in English better known under his nickname William the Silent) and the founder of the House of Orange-Nassau. William first changed the motto to "Je Maintiendrai Nassau". Later he (or his sons) dropped the family name from the motto.
The horn from the arms of the Princedom of Orange is not used in the coat of arms of the kingdom but is part of the personal arms and flags of many members of the royal family. See for example the image of the Royal Standard of the Netherlands.
The sword and arrows originated from the Habsburg rulers.
[[File:Arms of the united provinces.svg |thumb|140px|left|The Lion of the Dutch Republic]]
The lion, as representing the Burgundian Netherlands, first appears as a crest on the tomb of Philip the Handsome. Later Charles V added the sword. The arrows were used, on coins etc., since the early 16th century to represent the Seventeen Provinces in the low countries under control of Charles V. In 1578, during the Eighty Years' War, the States General ordered a new great seal representing the lion, the sword and the 17 arrows combined. Although only seven provinces remained free from Spain, this seal stayed in use until 1795.
After the completion of its forming in 1584 the Republic of the Seven United Provinces used as its arms: Or a crowned lion Gules armed and langued Azure, holding in his dexter paw a sword and in the sinister paw seven arrows tight together Azure. The colours of this version where derived from the most important of the seven provinces, the county of Holland (its arms are still in use since being adopted by the counts of Holland c. 1198).
After c. 1668 the colours where reversed and the arms became Gules a crowned lion Or armed and langued Azure holding in his dexter paw a sword Argent hilted Or and in the sinister paw seven arrows Argent pointed and tight together Or.
The arrows symbolize the seven provinces that made up the Republic, the sword the determination to defend their liberty, and the coronet their sovereignty.
In 1795, with French help, the last Stadholder William V was forced to flee and the Batavian Republic (1795–1806) was proclaimed. At first this had no influence on the use of the arms of the former Republic. However, the following year the lion, that had served for approximately 280 years, was replaced by an allegoric image of a “Dutch maiden of Freedom”.
The replacement of the Batavian Republic with the Kingdom of Holland (1806–1810) saw the first return of the lion of the States General. Louis Napoleon Bonaparte (brother of the French Emperor Napoleon) used as King Louis I a coat of arms that quartered the Dutch lion with the French Imperial Eagle. After the emperor Napoleon abolished the Kingdom of Holland in 1810 the lion again had to leave the stage and the Imperial Eagle was the only image in use.
In 1813 the French were forced out of the Netherlands and the son of the last Stadholder, William VI / I was proclaimed 'Sovereign Prince' (1813–1815). To symbolize his new status he assumed a new coat of arms. In it the old lion with the sword and arrows made his second reappearance, now with a Royal crown upon his head. Again it was placed in de prime locations of a quartered shield (I and IV quarter). In the II and III quarter where the arms of Châlon-Orange-Geneve, the arms of Nassau (Otto) where placed on an escutcheon in the center of the shield.
The final retirement of the Republican lion came in 1815 with the establishment of the “United Kingdom of the Netherlands”. Because this new kingdom comprised not only of the lands of the former Dutch Republic but also of the former Austrian or Southern Netherlands it was also not appropriate to continue the use of the old arms. First a combination with the arms of Brabant (Sable a Lion Or, now the coat of arms of Belgium) was considered. In the end the attributes, the sword, arrows and crown, were placed in the care of his older “colleague” from Nassau to symbolize the union between the (now Royal) House of Nassau and the Netherlands. As seen above, this is still the basis of the current coat of arms.
Various versions of the Dutch Royal Arms are used by Government, the Parliament and courts. Government and its agencies generally use a simplified version of the Royal Arms without the mantle, the pavilion and the topped royal crown. This simplified Royal Arms also feature on the cover of passports, embassies and consulates. The versions used by the Legislature and its chambers shown the Royal Arms with the Royal Crown and a buckled dark-blue strap that bears the name of the Parliament or each chamber Staten-Generaal (States General), Eerste Kamer der Staten-Generaal (Senate), Tweede Kamer der Staten-Generaal (House of Representatives) in gold letters surrounding the shield.
Wapens van de Nederlanden : de historische ontwikkeling van de heraldische symbolen van Nederland, België, hun provincies en Luxemburg / Hubert de Vries. Uitgeverij Jan Mets, Amsterdam, 1995
Accountability Day (Dutch: Verantwoordingsdag, popularly also referred to as (woensdag) gehaktdag, "Wednesday Mincing Day")) is the day in the Netherlands when the national government and ministries present their annual reports to the House of Representatives. On the same day, the Court of Audit publishes its report on the inspections of those annual reports. Accountability Day is held every year on the third Wednesday in May. The annual reports not only account for how much money has been spent and on what; the specific goals that were envisioned, and to what degree they have been achieved in the past year, are also discussed.
Accountability Day dates from 2000. Since then, the Finance Minister reports to the House personally. When doing so, a special suitcase is used, similar to the one carrying the budget plans (Miljoenennota) on Prinsjesdag, the third Tuesday in September. The suitcase is decorated with the Coat of arms of the Netherlands, and the text DERDE WOENSDAG IN MEI ("THIRD WEDNESDAY IN MAY") beneath it. Before 2000, the financial and ministerial annual reports - then referred to as "Financial Accountability" - were not sent to the House of Representatives until September. At the Parliament's prompting, this date has been brought forward, because MPs are too busy in autumn preparing the national budget debates for the next year to also invest time in the financial report of the previous year. This way, an Accountability Day refers to the Prinsjesdag of 1.5 years earlier. For example, on Accountability Day 2015, the Cabinet accounted for how much of the plans announced at Prinsjesdag 2013 had been achieved in 2014.
In 2004, the House approved of a motion requesting the Government to have all Cabinet members be present during the plenary debate on the national financial report the day after the third Wednesday in May.Coat of arms of Bonaire
The coat of arms of Bonaire was established in 1986 by the island council, when Bonaire was still part of the Netherlands Antilles. It remained the coat of arms of Bonaire after the dissolution of the Netherlands Antilles and the subsequent change of Bonaire's constitutional status into a special municipality of the Netherlands in 2010.
It consists of a blue shield, above which a crown is placed. On the shield a compass, ship's wheel, and a red six-pointed star can be found. The royal decree of 20 September 2010, no. 10.002198 granted this arms to Bonaire as a public body of the Netherlands.Coat of arms of Curaçao
The coat of arms of Curaçao consists of a crown that expresses the link with the Dutch royal family. On the left side it shows a sailing boat that represents trade. In the middle the coat of arms of Amsterdam is shown, expressing the trading bond. On the right side stands a citrus tree.Coat of arms of Saba
The coat of arms of Saba was established in 1985 by the island council of Saba, when it was still part of the Netherlands Antilles. It remained the coat of arms of Saba after the dissolution of the Netherlands Antilles and the subsequent change of Saba's constitutional status into a special municipality of the Netherlands in 2010.
It consists of a shield with an Audubon's shearwater (Puffinus lherminieri) (the national bird) on top, flanked by Saban cabbage (a historically important local foodcrop). In the middle is a representation of the island itself, with a fish, a sailboat, and a white potato (representing the local fishing and agriculture). The national motto is written on a golden banner below the shield, Latin: Remis velisque (literally "with oars and sails").The royal decree of 20 September 2010, no. 10.002570 granted this arms to Saba as a public body of the Netherlands.Coat of arms of Sint Eustatius
The coat of arms of Sint Eustatius consists of a shield and the motto. It was established on 9 November 2004 by the Island council of Sint Eustatius, when it was still part of the Netherlands Antilles. It remained the coat of arms of Sint Eustatius after the dissolution of the Netherlands Antilles and the subsequent change of Sint Eustatius's constitutional status into a special municipality of the Netherlands in 2010.
The shield consists of three parts, representing past, present and future represented the Golden Rock (a nickname for the prosperous historical Sint Eustatius), fort orange (Dutch: Fort Oranje) and the angelfish. The motto is written below as: superba et confidens (English: Proud and confident). The shield is surrounded by blue beads which were a sign of wealth.The arms were designed by Walter Hellebrand and submitted to the Dutch High Council of Nobility for evaluation in 1999. Replying in 2002, the Council qualified the design as 'overcharged'. It urged to simplify the charges on the shield, and suggested to replace the other elements of the achievement with a crown, like the arms of Curaçao, Bonaire and the provinces of The Netherlands. In 2004 the Council concluded its advice was not followed.After the islands change of constitutional status in 2010, the council of Sint Eustatius requested the High Council of Nobility to be granted this coat of arms as a public body of the Netherlands. The council approved and the arms were granted without changes by royal decree of 20 September 2010, no. 10.002023, blazoning it as Argent chapé ployé, a angelfish proper; the dexter chape per fess wavy, I. Gules a rocky mountain issuant Or, consisting of two parts, with the removed part two-third of the height of the part in front; II. barry wavy of ten pieces Azure and Argent; the sinister chape per fess; I. Argent, a fortress issuant with embattled walls Orange, consisting of an entrance gate and two pointed towers, voided Sable, and a clock tower, voided of the field; II. Vert. The shield is surrounded by a chain of beads Azure, placed on two sugar canes proper in saltire, surmounted by a mural crown Argent masoned Sable, consisting of four turrets with four battlements each. Motto: SUPERBA ET CONFIDENS in Latin script Sable on a scroll Argent.Coat of arms of Sint Maarten
The coat of arms of Sint Maarten consists of a shield with a rising sun and the motto. The shield displays the courthouse in the centre, the border monument to the right, the orange-yellow sage (which is the national flower) to the left. Flying in front of the rising sun is the pelican, which is the national bird of Sint Maarten. Under the shield is a ribbon with the mottoesiamense in Latin): Semper pro Grediens (English: always progressing).Coat of arms of the Netherlands Antilles
The coat of arms of the Netherlands Antilles consisted of a shield, a crown and the motto. The shield itself showed five blue stars on a golden background, within a red border. These five stars stood for the five islands of the Netherlands Antilles and also were represented in the flag. The crown atop the shield was that of the Dutch sovereign. Under the shield was a ribbon with the motto: Libertate Unanimus ("United in Freedom").
The ultimate coat of arms was adopted on 1 January 1986, the day that Aruba separated from the Netherlands Antilles and acquired a status aparte within the Kingdom of the Netherlands. This coat of arms replaced the previous version, which had been in use since 23 October 1964 and contained six stars: again one for each island including Aruba.
The arms were made redundant after the dissolution of the Netherlands Antilles on 10 October 2010.Compartment (heraldry)
In heraldry, a compartment is a design placed under the shield, usually rocks, a grassy mount (mount vert), or some sort of other landscape upon which the supporters are depicted as standing. Care must be taken to distinguish true compartments from items upon which supporters are merely resting one or more feet, or, sometimes, mere heraldic badges or pure decoration under the shield, and, conversely, care must also be taken in very unusual cases such as the coat of arms of Belize, in which what may be taken to be a crest, the mahogany tree rising above the shield, is really part of the compartment. It is sometimes said to represent the land held by the bearer. As an official part of the blazon it is a comparatively late feature of heraldry, often derived from the need to have different supporters for different families or entities, although sometimes the compartment is treated in the blazon separately from the supporters.Duchy of Nassau
The Duchy of Nassau (German: Herzogtum Nassau) was an independent state between 1806 and 1866, located in what is now the German states of Rhineland-Palatinate and Hesse. It was a member of the Confederation of the Rhine and later of the German Confederation. Its ruling dynasty, now extinct, was the House of Nassau. The duchy was named for its historical core city, Nassau, although Wiesbaden rather than Nassau was its capital. In 1865, the Duchy of Nassau had 465,636 inhabitants. After being occupied and annexed into the Kingdom of Prussia in 1866 following the Austro-Prussian War, it was incorporated into the Province of Hesse-Nassau. The area today is a geographical and historical region, Nassau, and Nassau is also the name of the Nassau Nature Park within the borders of the former duchy.
Today, the Grand Duke of Luxembourg still uses "Duke of Nassau" as his secondary title (of pretense), and "Prince" or "Princess of Nassau" is used as a title of pretense by other members of the grand ducal family. Nassau is also part of the name of the Dutch royal family, which styles itself Orange-Nassau.Dutch Republic Lion
The Dutch Republic Lion (also known as States Lion) was the badge of the Union of Utrecht, the Republic of the Seven United Netherlands and is a precursor of the current coat of arms of the Kingdom the Netherlands.Embassy of the Netherlands, London
The Embassy of the Kingdom of the Netherlands in London is the diplomatic mission of the Netherlands in the United Kingdom.The embassy is currently situated in a red brick mansion block at Hyde Park Gate, which it has occupied since 1953. It was reported in 2013 that the embassy was planning to move to a new building in Nine Elms.Flags of the Dutch royal family
The flags of the Dutch royal family are a set of flags used to identify a member of the royal family. The current system of flags for the Dutch monarch, princes, and princesses was introduced in 1908.Index of Netherlands Antilles-related articles
The following is an alphabetical list of topics related to the former nation of the Netherlands Antilles.Ministry of Defence (Netherlands)
The Ministry of Defence (Dutch: Ministerie van Defensie; MinDef) is the Dutch Ministry responsible for the armed forces of the Netherlands and Veterans Affairs. The Ministry was created in 1813 as the "Ministry of War" and in 1928 was combined with the "Ministry of the Navy". After World War II in the ministries were separated again, in this period the Minister of War and Minister of the Navy were often the same person and the State secretary for the Navy was responsible for daily affairs of the Royal Dutch Navy. In 1959 the ministries were merged. The Ministry is headed by the Minister of Defence, currently Ank Bijleveld, assisted by a State secretary (Barbara Visser) and the Chief of the Defence of the Netherlands, Rob Bauer since 2017.Nassau (region)
Nassau is a geographical, historical and cultural region in today's Rhineland-Palatinate and Hesse in western Germany. Named for the town of Nassau, it includes the territory of the Duchy of Nassau, a former sovereign country which existed until 1866. Occupied by Prussia and annexed into the Province of Hesse-Nassau in 1866, Nassau briefly became the name of a separate province, the Province of Nassau, in 1944. Much of the area is today part of the Nassau Nature Park. Nassau is also the name of the smaller Nassau collective municipality, the area surrounding the town of Nassau.National symbols of the Netherlands
Symbols of the Netherlands are items or symbols that have symbolic meaning to, or represent, the Netherlands.There symbols are seen in official capacities, such as flags, coats of arms, postage stamps, and currency, and in URLs. They appear less formally as recurring themes in literature, art and folk art, heraldry, monuments, clothing, personal decoration, and as the names of parks, bridges, streets, and clubs. The less formal manifestations may be classified as national emblems.Netherlands Antillean guilder
The Netherlands Antillean guilder (Dutch: gulden) is the currency of Curaçao and Sint Maarten, which until 2010 formed the Netherlands Antilles along with Bonaire, Saba, and Sint Eustatius. It is subdivided into 100 cents (Dutch plural form: centen). The guilder was replaced by the United States dollar on 1 January 2011 on Bonaire, Saba and Sint Eustatius. On Curaçao and Sint Maarten, the Netherlands Antillean guilder was proposed to be replaced by a new currency, the Caribbean guilder, but this has been stalled indefinitely by negotiations over the establishment of a separate central bank for Curaçao.Outline of the Netherlands
The following outline is provided as an overview of and topical guide to the Netherlands.
The Netherlands ( (listen); Dutch: Nederland, pronounced [ˈneːdərlɑnt] (listen)) comprises the mainland located in Northwest Europe and several islands located in the Caribbean that, together with Aruba, Curaçao and Sint Maarten in the Caribbean Sea, constitute the sovereign Kingdom of the Netherlands. The Netherlands is a parliamentary democratic constitutional monarchy. Its European mainland is bordered by the North Sea to the north and west, Belgium to the south, and Germany to the east.
The European Netherlands constitutes the vast majority (by land area and population) of both the country and the Kingdom of the Netherlands, and as such 'the Netherlands' in common parlance often implicitly refers to this entity. Similarly, the articles linked to below predominately consider the European Netherlands.Star for Loyalty and Merit
The Star for Loyalty and Merit (Dutch: Ster voor Trouw en Verdienste) was a civilian award established on 1 January 1894 by Governor-General Carel Herman Aart van der Wijck of the Dutch East Indies. The star replaced the old Medal for Civil Merit, which had limited prestige and status according to the Netherlands government. The star was awarded in gold to "significant and meritorious" natives, and in silver to village chiefs and leaders of the "Eastern foreigner" (i.e. Chinese) communities. Dutch (Europeans) were not eligible to receive the star.
The star was considered the colonial equivalent of the Order of the Netherlands Lion (or at least the "Brother" grade associated with the Order), as well as the medals and the Knight's Cross of the Order of Orange-Nassau.
The star ceased to be awarded after 1949.
Coats of arms of the Kingdom of the Netherlands
Part of the Kingdom of the Netherlands
|States with limited|