In all discussions about flags, it is almost exclusively the colours and patterns on the cloth that are discussed. It is extremely seldom that the proportions of a flag are mentioned. As scouts, we were taught that the Swedish flag has these measurements: Height: 4-2-4 (10) and length: 6-2-10.5 (18.5). This makes for a long and narrow flag.
The Old Danish flag, however, has these measurements: Height: 6-2-6 (14) and length 6-2-10.5 (18.5), which makes for a flag that is more square in shape. The measurements of the Dannebrog are fairly unique within the realm of flags. In the days of Valdemar Atterdag, the flag was a perfect square just like the Swiss flag, a so called heraldic flag, and then in the Flag Ordinance of 1748 its size was increased somewhat: 6-2-6 (14) and length: 6-2-9 (17). Current Dannebrog measurements stem from the Flag Ordinance of 1926 (14-18.5).
During its existence, the Scanian flag has not had any fixed measurements. In recent years, the measurements of the Swedish flag have been employed. This is inappropriate for Scania, which is an Old Danish heartland. Therefore, the The Foundation for Scania's Future decided to register the Scanian flag with new measurements in the Scandinavian Coat of Arms Register (see Appendix 5). Dr. Jan Raneke, heraldic expert, has provided assistance in this matter. It was obvious that the measurements of the new Scanian flag should reflect the measurements of the Dannebrog for historical reasons. It was not obvious, however, that these measurements should be the same as those of the modern Dannebrog. Instead, the measurements of the historical flag from 1748 were chosen, as it was the first Danish flag with fixed measurements (14 x 17). Consequently, the Scanian flag has now been officially registered.
Thus, anyone can now raise the new cultural and historical symbol of Scania. The flag has roots that go back a long time in Danish history and probably extends far backwards in time to the Catholic Archdiocese of Lund, common to Denmark and the Nordic countries following the Viking Age. This new cultural symbol is politically neutral and can be used in all cultural, tourist, representative and personal situations.
The purpose of the efforts of the Foundation for Scania's Future for a historically based design and the official registration in the Scandinavian Coat of Arms Register, of both the flag and the coat of arms, was to produce a neutral cultural and local flag that can serve as a regional national symbol.
As it happens, there is no other common symbol for Scania, since there were only official provincial and county coat of arms for the provinces of Skåne (Malmöhus and Kristianstad counties), Blekinge, Halland.
In August, the Foundation for Scania's Future also sent out a specially printed edition of the Scandinavian Coat of Arms Register to all municipalities in Skåne, Halland and Blekinge, encouraging the use of the Scanian flag alongside the Swedish national flag. Flag symbols are of great importance. Today, events are quickly progressing towards a regional Europe. Everywhere regional and national cultural symbols are brought forward not least highlighted by their flag symbols.
The cultural region of Scania, the old East Denmark, with its own language and unique history and culture, is one of Europe's regional nations. Thus, Scania should be seen together with its red and yellow cross flag, as a unifying symbol in all contexts both within and outside of Scania.
This pamphlet about the history of Scania's flag is a first attempt to gather what is known about the flag. Unfortunately, much of the information about its early history is not documented in written sources. This does not necessarily mean that they are missing, but could instead be due to the fact that nobody has searched for them before. The result is that I was forced to include all manner of hearsay, which I will leave as is until they are either documented or rejected. Research in the field has not yet reached such an advanced stage that it is possible to evaluate the different sources yet. I have therefore chosen to present the material as it is today with all its shortcomings, and will subsequently proceed towards a thorough evaluation when more information has been gathered.
FLAG: In a red field a yellow cross, a cloth with the 3-1-3 format in height and 3-1-4.5 in length
The Scanian Flag derives its origin to a symbol, which was carried by the Nordic Church, for which the Archbishop of Lund was primeas. The diocese of Lund, which included the provinces of Skåne, Halland, Blekinge and Bornholm, was identical with the territory of Scania in which the Scanian Law was in force. The diocese of Lund was also the area of the Archbishop of Lund.
The church flag, which was red with a yellow cross, received its secular counterpart in the Erik of Pomerania union banner, adopted in 1430. This was yellow with red cross with the colors reversed compared to the Nordic church.
Historically, we can associate Nordic symbolism with the colors red and yellow. In the modern era, in the 1870s, the flag was relaunched in Lund as the Scanian flag as a modern regional flag. It has been in use since then and is currently used in sports, culture, business, advertising, etc..
The modern Scanian flag rests on a historical base and is linked to Scania's historical background. The starting point for the design and dimensions of today's flag has been the measure, which was applied to the old Danish flag during the time when Scania was linked to the Danish kingdom. Dannebrog has since undergone several dimension changes. The Scania flag as well as the Scanian 'Panther' are registered as the cultural and native symbol of the region by Stiftelsen Skånsk Framtid.
SHIELD: In the red field a heraldic Scanian panther of gold.
South Scanian rune stone monuments from the Viking and early Middle Ages in Tullstorp and Hunnestad reflects the spread of the Germanic animal symbolism.
The animals on these rune stones are very similar to medieval fable animal, which in heraldic terminology is known as Panther. The Panther often spurts fire through the mouth and nostrils, it is horned and has hind legs like a lion, while the front legs are similar to the eagle. Other variants exist as this Scanian Panther, which is also unique. The Panther has a continuity in Scanian pictorial tradition which is evident in the following information about a Scanian medieval lineage used the panther in its shield. Magnus Scanong de Scania has in his seal from 1285 an image of a panther-like animal.
If there is a connection to the more recent prominent Danish dynasty with a panther is unclear. This was sporadically prevailing in Scania and Scanian clans. The Scania Panther must therefore be derived from the runic animals which have undergone a heralding process and intends to be a symbol of historical and historically knowledgeable Scanians. It now has more officially resumed as the Scanian Panther symbol and at least since 1975 been widely used as a symbol, among others the Scanian Academy.
IIn Scania one should basically follow the Swedish official flag days and one's own conscious. Among the Danish official flag days there is particularly one flag day that should be observed. The Valdemar Day on the 15th of June. A Scanian Flag Ordinance will eventually be published.