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Lanzahíta (Municipality, Castilla y León, Spain)

Last modified: 2015-01-17 by ivan sache
Keywords: lanzahíta | ávila |
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Flag of Lanzahíta - Image by Ivan Sache (reconstructed image, no original seen); coat of arms by Eduardo Panizo Gómez (Vexilla Hispanica website), 13 May 2011

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Presentation of Lanzahíta

The municipality of Lanzahíta (946 inhabitants in 2010; 3,300 ha) is located in the south of Ávila Province, on the border with Toledo Province, 90 km of Ávila.

Lanzah’ta is the place of the "Romería del Cristo de la Luz" (Pilgrimage of the Christ of the Light). Quoting the Castilla y León Tourism website:

The pilgrimage, which is of medieval origin and has a clear religious character, and has been declared of touristic interest in Castile and León, starts from Lanzahíta and heads towards neighbouring Hontanares.
The story behind the pilgrimage tells how a shepherd found the sacred image of Christ close to Hontanares on the shores of the river Tiétar more than 400 years ago. He took it to Lanzahíta and hung it in the chapel of La Virgen del Prado (the Virgin of the Pasture), but the image disappeared, only to be found in the same place it had been originally discovered. Again, it was taken to Lanzahíta, to the same temple, and again appeared in the place where the shepherd had found it. So the town's people built a chapel in Hontanares, where every year all the people of Lanzahíta go to show their devotion.
The pilgrimage starts at eight o'clock in the morning in Lanzahíta, and bearing a traditional candle, the procession of the faithful follows the route to Hontanares, where it usually arrives at about eleven o'clock. After mass, the pilgrims eat traditional pasties and drink lemonade on the shore of the river Tiétar.

Ivan Sache, 13 May 2011

Symbols of Lanzahíta

The flag and arms of Lanzahíta are prescribed by a Decree adopted on 1 July 1994 and published on 4 August 1994 in the official gazette of Castilla y León, No. 150 (text).
The symbols are described as follows:

Flag: Rectangular flag, with proportions 2:3, quartered red and white. In the middle of the flag is placed the municipal coat of arms, in full colors.
Coat of arms: Argent on a terrace proper a spear [lanza] adextered armed argent hilted proper holding a gonfanon of Castilla y León the whole fimbriated sable. The shield surmounted with a Royal Spanish crown.

The Royal Academy of History found the proposed arms "very simple and appropriate, as recalling the name of the village". However, some improvements in the graphic design are required: the terrace should be reduced to a minimum size, the gonfanon should be rolled around the spear, which should be centered in the shield. The Academy approved the flag's proposal, noticing that the design approved by the Municipal Council differs from the design proposed in the memoir ( Boletín de la Real Academia de la Historia, 1996, 193, 1: 182).
The element making the arms canting is indeed the spear used as a post (híta) to mark the border of Castilla y León.

Ivan Sache, 13 May 2011