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Botswana Coat of Arms

Last modified: 2005-10-29 by bruce berry
Keywords: botswana | zebras: 2 | pula |
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[Botswana Coat of Arms] image from this site, reported by Dov Gutterman, 8 Mar 1999

Coat of Arms were adopted on 25 January 1966

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Botswana Coat of Arms

The shape of the shield is rather strange, as it is a shape used in East Africa and not by the Tswana tribes.  The cog wheels symbolise mining and industry in the country. The waves symbolise the (few) rivers in the country, and the importance of water. The bull's head symbolises the importance of cattle herding for the economy of the country.
The supporters are two zebra (Equus zebra), which are common among the wildlife in Botswana. The supporters hold an elephant's tusk, as a symbol for the former ivory trade, and a ear of sorghum, the main local crop.
The motto Pula means 'rain', indicating the importance of rain for the country.
Source: Ralf Hartemink's website.
Jarig Bakker, 24 Jan 2002

Both the currency and national motto of Botswana are Pula which means 'rain'. To a Motswana, pula means more than just the wet stuff which falls out the sky: it stands for luck, life and prosperity.  In Mmabatho, in the former South African Homeland of Bophuthatswana, one of the most impressive pieces of architecture is the water tower in the symbolic shape of two hands holding aloft a bowl.  Probably not really surprising imagery for such a dry region.
Stuart A.Notholt, 3 November 1996