San Germán (Puerto Rico)
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Civic heraldry of the United States > Puerto Rico
The pontificial hat and the walking stick represent San Germán, bishop of Auxerre (France) and patron of the city. The pontificial hat represents excellence, the sign of the episcopal dignity: it represents the fullness of the priesthood. The walking stick represents the power of the bishops to shepherd their spiritual flock.
The green background represents the pontificial hat of patriarchs, archbishops and bishops, as well as their cords and tassels that for some years have been established also by the Holy See as the standard colour of the canopies and other episcopal parameters. But the green colour, along with the gold, which are the colours of this first quarter, have in addition another symbolism; first they remember don Diego Colón, first-born of the discoverer of America, and that in his character of governor of the Indies, with seat in Santo Domingo, by decree named the population San Germán. It was his intention to honour Queen Germana de Folix, second wife of don Fernando the Catholic, the monarch who imposed and presided over the colonization of Puerto Rico.
The second quarter shows the arms of the kingdoms of Aragon and Sicily, where don Fernando the Catholic reigned.
The forth quarter shows the arms of Ponce de Leon. This same shield, alone and in combination with other heraldry quarter elements, are used in the houses of the Ponce de Leon of Spain. The branch of Puerto Rico, for some unknown reason, was designed without a crown, like in the old church of Santo Tomás (today San José) in San Juan, and in the seals that Monsignor Murga reproduced in his book about Ponce de Leon. In its shield, San German's quarter perpetuates the memory of the conqueror of Puerto Rico, who always offered his stimulus and protection.
Literature : Information and image from Nelson L. Román
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