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Jalisco, Mexico

Estado Libre y Soberano de Jalisco / Free and Sovereign State of Jalisco

Last modified: 2005-07-23 by juan manuel gabino villascán
Keywords: mexico | jalisco | coat of arms | lion | new galicia | nueva galicia | nueva espana | new spain | unofficial | proposal | guadalajara |
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Note: Jalisco has no official flag, but one in white charged with the coat of arms is broadly used:

Jalisco unofficial white flag 4:7[Non-official proportions]
[Defacto flag]
[One or more variants under the same basic design]
by Juan Manuel Gabino Villascán, May 06, 2001.
See: Coat of arms of white bakground: unofficial flags

See also: Other sites:
  • Jalisco coat of arms: web page by the Government of Jalisco
    reported by Juan Manuel Gabino Villascán, May 08, 2001

Presentation of Jalisco:

  • Official name: Estado Libre y Soberano de Jalisco / Free and Sovereign State of Jalisco
  • Short-form names: Estado de Jalisco / State of Jalisco; Jalisco.
  • Location: West of Mexico. It neighbors the Mexican States of Aguascalientes, Zacatecas, Nayarit and Durango to North; Guanajuato to East; Michoacán de Ocampo and Colima to South, and the Pacific Ocean to West.
  • Area: 78,839 km22
  • Municipalities: 113
  • Population: 6'322,002 inhabitants
  • Capital: Guadalajara (Pop.: 2'178,000)
  • Statehood: June 16, 1823
  • Arms adopted: November 8, 1989, by decree 13661 of November 11, 1989. Published on the "Periódico Oficial del Estado de Jalisco"
    Actually, the arms of Jalisco are those of Guadalajara, but with slightly modifications, the arms were granted by Charles V in 1542.

Reported by Juan Manuel Gabino Villascán, October 06, 2001.

Coat of arms

Jalisco coat of arms
by Juan Manuel Gabino Villascán, May 06, 2001.

The coat of arms consists of an "iberian" shield (round pointed with parallel sides and flat top), azure, two lions or holding a tree in natural colors, and tressure or charged with seven saltires gules. Helm argent, crowned with a red burgee (?) charged with a cross potent (?) or, manteled of the first. In the web there is a pseudo 3D image showing a slightly different version, with border instead of tressure, but I guess this is an simplification error.
António Martins, 22 Jun 1999

This coat of arms was given to the City of Guadalajara by Royal decree of H.M. King Carlos V in 1542, the year the city was founded. Truly unprecedented, as it was not in the policy of the Crown to give Coats of Arms to cities in the New World, it was done probobly because rather than being a conquered city, it was one that was founded anew by and for Spaniards. We can see in the centre, a tree with two lions climing it. Does this look familiar? Yes, it resembles the coat of arms of Madrid. Yet, rather than a single bear climbing up a tree, we see two lions. This is no surprise, as the New World was colonised out of Andalucía. And just like the Andalusian dialect was the one taken to the New World, so it was shown in the influence of this Coat of Arms, as Andalucía's has two lions, those were put in place of the bear. Thus, we can see the influence of both Castilla and Andalucía in Guadalajara.
Jesus Aceves, 14 Nov 1998

From Flag Report 13,
by Jaume Ollé
May 9, 2001

Regarding the coat of arms, it was adopted by decree No. 13661 probably dated on October 1989. Nevertheless there are publications previous to this date that already assign this coat-of-arms to the state of Jalisco.

The text of the decree says:

'It is declared as representative and official of the State of Jalisco, the coat of arms of the city of Guadalajara and the blue and gold colours.

Article 1.- It is declared as representative and official of the state of Jalisco, the coat-of-arms of the city of Guadalajara, capital of the state, described as follows: A shield, and inside it two lions proper in posture of jumping [i.e., rampant], their hands reaching a pine of gold highlighted in green, in blue field, border of seven red saltires and gold field; for crest a closed helmet crowned by a red flag with a cross of Jerusalem in gold, attached to a spear, with trasoles, dependencies and leaves [sic] of blue and gold.

Article 2.-Blue and gold are official colours of the state of Jalisco.

Article 3.- The coat-of-arms of the State of Jalisco will be used with due respect by the dependencies of government and by the social groups that represent the entity, inside and outside the national territory, as well as by the citizens of Jalisco in general.


This decree will come into effect on 8 November of the current year, date of the 450 anniversary of the Royal Decree of 1539 that granted coat of arms to the city of Guadalajara, and must published in the Official Journal of the State of Jalisco as well as in one of the State's main newspapers'.The description of the coat-of-arms reproduces literally the decree of Emperor Charles V of Germany and Queen Joan of Castille of 8 November 1539, preserved in file 230 AGI Guadalajara, Archive of Indias, Seville, Spain.

Proposal flag for Jalisco

Note by Editor: "Thanks to Jaume Ollé for its important contribution concerning to the topic.

Jalisco-Proposal flag 2:3[Non-official proportions]
Flag proposal
Based on written description
by Juan Manuel Gabino Villascán, July 17, 2001.

Here is a transcription of an article I published in Flag Report 13 (issued 1 January 2000).
Jaume Ollé
May 9, 2001.

"The first news of the existence of a flag in the state of Jalisco came to me through a young Mexican vexilologist who gave me the colours and said to me that the flag could be seen in Guadalajara quite often. Nevertheless, I believe, that contradictory news were mixed, on the one hand the existence of a flag project with blue and yellow colours and on the other hand the exhibition of a flag with these colours as local flag of the city of Guadalajara, that apparently was based on the supposed colours of the Kingdom of Nueva Galicia.

Immediately I requested official information to the governor of the State. Later, I contacted an Argentinian vexilologist resident in Mexico, Luis Havas, who talked to Mr. Fernando Navarro, of the Center for the Attention of the Matters Addressed to the Governor of the State of Jalisco, who, by chance, had recived my letter addressed to the governor. Mr. Navarro said that he knew nothing about the issue, but he promised to ask the Congress and see if there was any bill in such sense.

Luis Havas then talked to Mrs. Patricia de la Torre, researcher of the Congress of the State of Jalisco, who was in possession of the project about such a flag. It was, at first, a small flag that the businessmen of Jalisco gave to the Governor, of the opposing party PAN (Party colours: blue and white); this one supported the project and passed it to the Congress' Legal Director, Mr. Palomino.
There, it remained under consideration, and when it is finished it will be submitted as a bill, and if approved - and over all, if it is 'approved' by the Governance Secretariat (PRI) -it is possible that Mexico will have for the first time a flag for a state.
Mrs. de la Torre promised to send all the precedents. E-mail from María Patricia de la Torre, Congress of the State of Jalisco, received through Luis Havas:

'Excuse me for not having answered sooner your letter, I send you my best regards again by this means and I inform you that the project is still under consideration, but the flag was made by Mr. Jorge García Fernández and Mr. Alejandro Fruchier, President and Director of the Business Council of Jalisco. Their telephone is 013 634 89 34, ext. 207. As you rightly say it is a formidable idea, that is still under consideraiton. Any advance, if 'authorized', will be communicated to you at once. Thanks for your interest, and best wishes'.

On Monday Luis Havas tried to take contact with some of the mentioned people.

On 18 January 1999 it was received the complete information from the government of the State by means of the Center for the Attention of the Matters Addressed to the Governor. (...)

Constitutional Governor Alberto Cardenas Jiménez ordered the sending of the requested information, collected by Fernando Navarro Toriz. (...)

Concerning the new flag Mr. Navarro says:

There exist the project of submitting a bill to the Congress in order to approve an official flag, but it is yet in process of approval by the Governor. The said project shows in its design blue in the half corresponding to the hoist and the other in gold. The division is in vertical and in the center the official coat-of-arms."

The current unofficial flag used is that in white with the state arms (a variant of the Guadalajara arms -see above-) in the center. However, as reporter also by Jaume Ollé in Flag Report 13, there is a bill on the State Flag. According state representatives and Mr. Palomino (Congress Head Director and the person who originally sent the proposal to the Congress in late 1990s), the bill (entitled Ley de la Bandera del Estado Libre y Soberano de Jalisco) is planned to be discused, in the next few days by the Comisión de Asuntos Constitucionales (Comission of Constitutional Matters), if approved, then it shall be passed by the whole State congres. This last step could take some weeks, but according Mr. Palomino, by February 2005 may be a final resolution. Thus if passed, Jalisco shall be the very first Mexican state in adopt, by law, a local flag.
By the way, the desing proposed is as issued in Flag Report 13 but there will be some changes in the coat of arms.
Juan Manuel Gabino Villascán, December 08, 2004.

Jalisco: historical flags and coat of arms

Jalisco: Colonial flags and coat of arms

Kingdom of New Galicia, founded about 1532, was a constituent territory of the Viceroyalty of New Spain gaining broad domestic autonomy in 1574, excepting a short period from 1588 to 1591; the Viceroy's authority just might intervene in military and fiscal matters.
Note that New Galicia was not a Viceroyaly, it was named "Kingdom of New Galicia", though it was not governed by a King but by a "governor" who was at the same time president of the Royal Audence of Guadalajara.
The capital was first established at Compostela (currently in the State of Nayarit); then on May 10, 1560, by Royal Cédula, it moved to Guadalajara.
The Kingdom of New Galicia desappeared in 1786 to become the Intendencia of Guadalajara; this allowed the central government to intervener broadly in internal matters. When Mexico achieved independence on 27 September, 1821, and became an Empire, the Intendencia of Guadalajara became the Department of Guadalajara (incorrectly known as "Province of Guadalajara") as a constituent part of the Empire. On June 23, 1823, the Department of Guadalajara, became the "Estado Libre y Soberano de Xalisco", to form the Federal Republic of the United Mexican States.
Juan Manuel Gabino Villascán, July 17, 2001

[Flag of New Galicia] 2:3[Non-official proportions]
Based on written description
by Juan Manuel Gabino Villascán, July 17, 2001

This is the flag of the former Viceroyalty of Nueva (New) Galicia (present-day Jalisco). The interesting thing is that eventhough Méjico (Mexico) achieved its nationhood in 1821, federating into a serperate empire the Viceroyalties of New Spain, New Galicia, New Viscany, New Toledo, etc., that this flag is still used, but now as flag of the city of Guadalajara. This coat of arms was granted to the City of Guadalajara by H.M. King Carlos V in 1542.
Jesus Aceves, 14 Nov 1998

This is the flag of the former Kingdom of New Galicia that covered most of the current State of Jalisco's territory, including also the current States of Zacatecas, Aguascalientes, and Nayarit. It is said, this flag, with small variations is used as flag of the city of Guadalajara, last capital of New Galice, and now capital city of the State of Jalisco.
Juan Manuel Gabino Villascán, July 17, 2001