What Flag Is That 11.30.21

The Civil Ensign of Martinique. Martinique is an island and an overseas department/region and single territorial collectivity of France. An integral part of the French Republic. It is located in the Lesser Antilles of the West Indies in the eastern Caribbean Sea.

Martinique is also an Outermost Region (OMR) of the European Union and a special territory of the European Union; the currency in use is the euro. Virtually the entire population speaks both French (the sole official language) and Martinican Creole.

There is confusion over the derivation of the name Martinique. Some historians claim it is from a word meaning ‘Island of the Flowers’. Others say it comes from a word meaning ‘Island of Women’. Even others hold the theory it is ‘Island of Iguanas’. It is another one of the places that Christopher Columbus ‘stole’ for Spain. Soon the French pushed them out and England and France waged a number of battles to ‘win’ the Island.

The indigenous people of this island were the Aarawak from Central America and the Caribs from the Venezuelan coast. The Caribs were especially ruthless in their response to Mr. Columbus and any visitors he brought to the island.

Due to it’s strategic location Martinique became a favorite staging place for French Pirates. Here is the flag of ‘The Dred Pirate Bartholomew Roberts. The governors of Barbados and Martinique hunted Roberts for years.

The French attempted different agricultural products on the island. They tried coffee and cotton with not much success. It became a destination for hundreds of slaves brought from Africa by the French. Various slave uprisings occurred until slavery was abolished by the French in 1848.

The Civil Ensign Flag is based on the coat of arms of Martinique.
The Martinique Civil Flag is similar to the flag of Quebec Canada. Quebec has a White cross on a blue field with a ‘Fleur-de-lis’ (a symbol for a flower, common in European heraldic representation, especially in France) in each corner. Martinique has the same white cross on a blue field but they have a ‘fer-de-lance‘ (viper) in each corner.

Due to it’s distinct history and the fact that French ships from a certain part of the Martinique history flew this ensign on it’s ships during the slave period, in 2018 French President Emmanuel Macron ordered it not be used again. Local people on Martinique do not use this flag now. It has not been co-opted by unfortunate groups and I keep it as a historically important flag of a country we have sailed past. On our once in a life time sailing trip in the Caribbean we caught sight of Martinique but did not go into port due to the regulations and hoops the French place upon folks with USA passports. It certainly was a beautiful place.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: