Marrum/Westernijkerk is a twin village in Ferwerderadiel municipality,
coat of arms: in gold a cat and a rook, both black and turned; the first sitting
and the second standing on a green embattled base; the cat's tail in the
green base; a blue chief charged with three silver six-pointed stars.
Flag: two equally wide horizontal stripes of blue and green; over all
a yellow lying lozenge, touching all sides of the flag, charged with black
eradicated heads of a cat and a rook, facing each other.
In both villages were "stinzen" (stately fortified houses), where several
noble families lived. In Marrum was Ponga-state, where the families Ponga,
Wynia, Walta, and Van Idzinga resided. The arms of these families were
mainly blue with silver and gold.
In Nijkerk (not to be confused with (Oosternijkerk
in Dongeradeel and the municipality of Nijkerk
in Gelderland province) the Jeppema's lived. They had arms with the imperial
eagle in black on gold with a blue heartshield charged with a silver six-pointed
star. After them the families Gerbranda and Unema, and finally the Grovestins
The Grovestins family were very important in Fryslân; they had
arms with the Frisian half eagle, black on gold, in blue three six-pointed
stars of gold, placed per pale. The glory of these families is long forgotten,
there only remain a tombstone, a name, a fragment of a ditch, an inscription,
as Hendrik Algra wrote in "De Historie gaat door het eigen dorp", part
This was a reason for including colors and elements of theit arms on
the village Coat of Arms and flag.
Another item was irresistible to use: the village nicknames: The Marrumers
are "katten" (cats) and the Nijtsjerksters "roeken" (rooks).
<rooks were an indication of a garbage disposal dump; cats signified
fierce women; another nickname for the Marrumers was "gibben", wild
pigeons, spike-like fishes; they are also long skinny girls, which seem
to have been abundant in Marrum>
In the village coat of arms we see both animals facing each other, not in order
to indicate a contrast, but to emphasize that they belong to each other.
The colors gold and black are derived from the double-headed eagle and
the Frisian semi-eagle in the arms of the noble families. Furthermore black
is the proper color of both animals.
The green embattled base signifies that remnants of both fortified
houses are only the ground on which they were built, and that it is used
for agricultural purposes. Green is the color of meadows and arable land.
The blue chief is for the sea, and of the clay, deposited here by the
sea. Blue is also found in the old family-arms. The stars have also been
derived from those arms. They have also been inspired by the municipal
arms of Ferwerderadiel.
In the flag the cat and the rook are central, but with only their heads,
as pars-pro-toto. They are in a lying yellow lozenge, derived from the
Walta family (which once resided on Ponga state). Lozenges are connected
with law administration. They can be compared with a spearhead of a bailiff.
Like the lozenge touched all four sides of the flag, so far reached the
domain of the village judge, the village borders.
Colors and meaning of it have been derived from the municipal arms.
Design: J.C. Terluin, 25 Nov 1999.
Source: Genealogysk Jierboekje 2001.
Jarig Bakker, 24 Aug 2003