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Kraziai (Siauliai, Lithuania)

Last modified: 2023-06-03 by zachary harden
Keywords: siauliai | kelme | kraziai |
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image by Virginijus Misiunas, 12 February 2010

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Kraziai (Kelme District) - on a blue field the silver Archangel Michael holds in his right hand a silver sword with golden hilt, in his left hand golden scales, the archangel's flesh proper, on his breast two crossed golden belts, under his legs a black devil with silver horns. Flag proportions 5:6, fringe is silver, finial is a golden tip with a ring and silver bands having blue tufts.
The charge has more than one meaning:
(1) the local church once had the name St. Michael;
(2) the Kraziai massacre of 1893 is mentioned: the Emperor of Russia Alexander III commanded to destroy the Catholic church despite petitions, but the local people resisted, they clashed unarmed with Russian gendarmes and won that day. Next day the Russian forces were reinforced with 300 Cossacks and broke the resistance. 9 people were killed, 54 injured, several hundreds arrested and 35 of them imprisoned. The massacre had a strong international resonance, and the church was secured (it stays now as well). So the charge symbolizes victory of good against evil.
The devil was intentionally made slightly similar to a Cossack.
Virginijus Misiunas, 12 February 2010