About Vilkaviškis

The coat of arms

The coat of arms of the city of Vilkaviškis

HISTORICAL DATA: It is often claimed in the literature that Vilkaviškis obtained the rights of the city of Magdeburg in 1697. In fact, then, the city was approved. Self-government came earlier when the Chancellor of Lithuania Kristupas Zigmantas Pacas (1621-1684) was the elder of Vilkaviškis. This is clear from 1679. April 7th Jonas Sobieski’s Privileges to Vilkaviškis Jewish Kahal, which states that Jews do not belong to the Magdeburg Court of K. Pac’s newly founded city (LVIA. F. SA. B. 13807. L. 701-703). However, when the city was founded, there is no exact data. One can only speculate that it was not long before the said privilege for Jews. It can also be assumed that Vilkaviškis self-government was weak because no trace of her activity has survived. If it was still in operation, it was undoubtedly abolished in 1776. together with the municipalities of other small towns.

During the four-year period of the Seimas (1788-1792), Vilkaviškis revived self-government and even secured the privilege of the ruler Stanislovas Poniatowski. It was issued in 1791. December 9th The parchment original of the Privilege, with its colored city coat of arms, has survived to the present day and is now preserved in the Central Archives of Old Acts in Warsaw (Parchment Collection No. 4360). At the same time, the privilege was recorded in Lithuanian Metrics. The coat of arms of the city was also painted here. Lithuanian Metrics is currently stored in the Russian State Archives of Old Acts in Moscow. Thus, we have two major sources of iconography of the coat of arms of Vilkaviškis. In addition, in 1791. in privilege, the ruler writes: “And that the city, being stamped with extracts of court and city administration and other acts, be honored, we return to it and give to it the old coat of arms, as it is seen here, a bright red lily; we allow this emblem to be used on stamps and on all signs for that city. “

There is no doubt that Vilkaviškis “old coat of arms” was borrowed from Pacas heraldry. This tribe has long used a silver double lily in the red field, known in Polish as Gozdawa. Only the coat of arms of Vilkaviškis, to make it different from the coat of arms of Pacai, was specially changed colors, in other words, a new coat of arms was created. The symbolism chosen for Vilkaviškis only confirms that the initiator of his municipal rights and heraldry was Lithuanian Chancellor K. Pacas, 17th century. In the second half he managed Vilkaviškis eldership.

Following the victory of the Targovica Conference in 1792 Vilkaviškis self-government was abolished in the middle of the 19th century. After this the second one was executed, and in 1795 he was executed. and the third division of the Polish-Lithuanian state. Initially Vilkaviškis became part of Prussia, then France, later Russia-dependent Kingdom of Poland, which remained until the 20th century. beginning. Here we will only note that all nineteenth century attempts to restore the historical coat of arms of Vilkaviškis were unsuccessful.

Before the war, in the time of the Republic of Lithuania, the coat of arms of the town of Vilkaviškis was slightly used. However, the pre-war coat of arms painted by Tadas Daugirdas, B. Shaliamoras and other artists was very far from reality. Instead of a heraldic lily, the flower of a simple nursery flower lily was depicted.

1969 Arūnas Tarabilda restored the coat of arms of Vilkaviškis on April 1, the same year. approved by the Republican Heraldry Commission. Then a stylized baroque shield was used to show the time of the emblem. Following the prohibition of the Heraldry Commission the following year, the coat of arms of Vilkaviškis was forgotten again.

The coat of arms of Vilkaviškis was restored by artist Laima Ramonienė, based on the surviving original iconographic material. Its standard was approved by the Lithuanian Heraldry Commission in 1995. July 5 (minutes of commission meeting 136).

The coat of arms description: The blue field of the coat of arms depicts a red heraldic lily.

Lithuanian Heraldry Commission, 1995 July 12

Scroll to Top