hosmich's avatar


100 Watchers188 Deviations
Hello everybody!

I am member of deviantART since Summer 2013 and until now I have published 200 files (pictures and texts). Many of them were flags, coats of arms, maps and alternate history stories. However, the greatest work I compiled at deviantART is this list of language symbols:
First part: official languages (official at national or subnational level)
Second part: unofficial languages (because the first part was full)
Third part: small languages (all that didn't fit in the second part)
Of course I created some linguistic flags and listed them here. My other galleries contain various maps (mainly flag maps), symbols of possible Slovak regions (I am Slovak), some Iberia stuff, Central Unity stuff (Central Unity is my alternate timeline) and some stuff invented before I joined deviantART.

Now I say something about Iberia. I was amazed by Spain and Portugal since childhood and didn't understand why they divided the peninsula so strangely that Galicia is part of Spain. Then I asked myself why they ever divided the peninsula and didn't make single country. If they did so, Brazil would speak the same language as rest of Latin America, because the single language would be colonial at the expense of others. However, languages of Lisbon and Madrid both became colonial, unlike Basque, Catalan and others. When I discovered that modern Spain was born from marriage of Ferdinand and Isabella, I told myself: One marriage caused fusion of two different kingdoms to create single "nation state", as Franco saw Spain. Why this fate of subordinating and risk of assimilation fell on Catalans and Basques and not on Portuguese? What kind of internal power Portuguese have they didn't join Spain? With the word "Spain" I meant multicultural Iberian federation, more similar to Switzerland than current Spain. However, I later renamed the union to Iberia, because this term is not bound to any current nation. I always considered Iberia as union of four nations: Basque, Catalan, Castilian (later renamed to Spanish) and Portuguese. Galician nation is product of Spanish influence within Spanish boundary and they are basically Portuguese. In Iberia Galicia should be part of Portugal, but still within single state with Spain. For more of my Iberian thoughts, read my journal entries Some words about flag of Iberia and Outline of Iberia.

However, I still remembered Iberia has nothing to do with my main focus of interest: symbols of languages. Flags of Switzerland, Belgium or Canada are nice, but hardly usable to mark languages, so I never fell in love with them. While many pages discourage use of flags for marking languages, I realized they all discourage use of national flags. With this remark I turned the sail and instead of speculating which official flag to use, started to look for explicitly linguistic flags. One prominent example dating to 1905 is flag of Esperanto. For some languages national flag isn't bad, when the language is not used beyond the nation. However, it must sometimes be modified, because some flags contain explicit representation of territory. Flag of language should never include map, coats of arms of counties or some political symbol. Thus I used this flag and refused official flag of Croatia with representation of Slavonia, Dalmatia, Dubrovnik and Istria. It has nothing with Herzegovina and Vojvodina, where Croatians live, not to mention minorities in Austria and Slovakia! But red-white chequy alone is recognizable Croatian symbol fitting to national tricolor. (Similar "minimal symbols" for countries I collect here. I am Wikipedian since 2009.) My journal entries about linguistic flags are here and here is list of my requests for (not only linguistic) flags.

However, I didn't constrain myself to linguistic symbolism. I used to like alternate history, but rather from visual side. I enjoyed AH flags and maps and looked for inspiration for my linguistic stuff. Some flags in my list were adapted from AH.com and I myself contributed there with some images (and texts). An interesting alternate history is partitioning Germany after WWII in more than two states. Here are two maps of tri-partitioned Germany:
<da:thumb id="326211014"/><da:thumb id="476829761"/>
I don't contribute with another map, rather with flags of the three parts as I would make them.
Kingdom of Hanover (officially Kingdom of Germany)
Federal Republic of Bavaria
People's Republic of Prussia
Black in Prussian flag is changed to Socialist red and pan-German tricolor is present in CoA, because Prussians hope to unite all Germany under Socialism. The word "Germany" is not used in political context.
German tricolors and are not in official use, although they are still unificational symbols of Germany (monarchic or republican).

This is alternative history. However, independence of Scotland could become reality and then real history. I wrote a journal entry before the referendum about post-independence British flag. This was proposed as Scottish flag, but current saltire would be suitable for independent country. The problem was that St Andrew's Cross has prominent place in British flag. This problem vanished by referendum results and was debunked by me here. But while Union Jack is preserved for the United Kingdom and its colonies, it can be removed from flags of independent states. Australia is the biggest one with still containing UJ in national flag. The fact that Southern Cross is prominent feature in New Zealand flag (although with different color and number of stars) encourages both countries to change their flags. Let me now forget all arguments against flag change (from cost to memory of war veterans) and see how the first flags of Australia and New Zealand looked:

Ad fontes, literally "to the sources", can be a way to new flag. Modifications of these flags made by Kristberinn :
<da:thumb id="426234479"/><da:thumb id="426233185"/>
Still similar to each other, but influence of former designs is obvious, same like connection to Britain. Both designs are unique and can replace UJ in cantons of other flags, e.g. or . Here are my designs for flags to be used in Australasia:
Flags of New Zealand and its associated states by hosmich Flags of New Zealand, Cook Islands and Niue by hosmich My flag of Australia by hosmich and version on Imgur:
The former Kiwi flag is proposal by Kyle Lockwood with adding black and I don't like it. The latter Kiwi flag is version of AlthistoryGuy's proposal with stars more resembling current NZ flag. The Ozzie flag is combination of green-gold bicolor and Australian Southern Cross. It is unique with seven-pointed stars and additional seven-pointed Commonwealth Star is omitted, because number of states can change. I appreciate these designs, but I as partially Hungarian recognize the eight-pointed star as Finno-Ugric symbol. The seven-pointed star isn't unique either, so I prefer the Southern Cross. The only similarity is with flag of Brazil, but it is different enough.

Flags of the United States of Europe
United States of Europe is fictional name for yet nonexistent entity, but one can design its subdivisions and also flags for them. My idea was to divide greatest countries in order to balance powers. The main problem was the ideal partition of Germany, but this is good IMO. I divided current European Union into 50 parts and assigned flags to them. Images taken primarily from Wikimedia Commons.
  1. Åland
  2. Alsace-Lorraine
  3. Andalusia
  4. Austria
  5. Basque Country
  6. Brittany
  7. Bulgaria
  8. Catalonia
  9. Corsica
  10. Croatia
  11. Cyprus
  12. Czechia
  13. Dalmatia
  14. Denmark
  15. England and Wales (flag of England is not accepted by Welsh, this is my proposal)
  16. Estonia
  17. Finland
  18. Flanders
  19. France
  20. Galicia
  21. Greece
  22. Hungary
  23. Ireland
  24. Italy
  25. Lapland
  26. Latvia
  27. Lithuania
  28. Luxembourg
  29. Malta
  30. Netherlands
  31. North Germany (everything north of Westphalia)
  32. Occitania
  33. Poland
  34. Portugal (current flag symbolizes independence, this is my proposal)
  35. Prussia (colors adapted from socialist flag, includes Mecklenburg)
  36. Romania
  37. Sardinia
  38. Saxony (includes Thuringia)
  39. Scotland
  40. Silesia
  41. Slovakia (flag with CoA is unofficially used)
  42. Slovenia (these designs are unofficially used)
  43. South Germany (Baden, Württemberg and Bavaria)
  44. South Tyrol
  45. Spain
  46. Sweden
  47. Transylvania
  48. Ulster (renamed Northern Ireland)
  49. Wallonia
  50. West Germany (unofficially called Rhineland, includes Westphalia, Hesse, Palatinate and Saarland)
Possible states:
Aragon (proposal by Leonardo Piccioni, current flag is unofficially used)
North Cyprus (it may be outside the USE, but if inside, it is separate state)

Number of states is deliberately 50 as in USA, if some from the latter list is added, Occitania or Lapland can be removed. I don't know exact boundaries. For Croatia and South Tyrol coat of arms is necessary, elsewhere I avoided it. However, it can be used in unofficial flags. Twinship of some flags (Slovakia-Russia, Dalmatia-Ukraine) is thus not defect. Widely used, but unofficial flag for united Germany is this:

Last but not least, this journal entry is list of my future works. I will submit no new deviations, only update older ones. However, my works on Imgur and some taken pictures are listed here, so you can still watch me, comment or write notes.

Some taken flag proposals I like
Proposal for a new flag of New York State by Marmocet or New York State
Flag of Transcaucasia by NRE86Transcaucasia (twin of my flag of Great Britain)
Federal Republic of Brazil #2 by FederalRepublicBrazil
Caribbean Netherlands by Leonardo Piccioni (Leoninia)

Examples from my Imgur
Union Jack with Wales
Scot-free Union Jack
Scot-free Jack-free British flag
Czech flag (without symbol of Slovakia, but with Moravia and Silesia)
Flag of Westoslavia (Czech-Polish-Slovak state)
Improved flag of EFTA (old version Flag of EFTA by hosmich)
Old flag of German language (superseded by Combined flag of language: German by hosmich)
Flag of Alemannic German (competing with )
Variant flag of Chinese language (original Chinese flag by hosmich)
Flags of Turiec, Spiš and Zemplín counties
  Flag map of counties of the Kingdom of Hungary by hosmichFlag map of counties, the flags are listed here and my ones explained in Slovak here
Final proposals for new flag of Australia (for Northern Ireland I am decided for this one and for New Zealand this one)
Flag of KwaZulu-Natal (improved this one Flag of KwaZulu-Natal by dragonvanguard)
Flag of Spain for use in Catalonia (reaction on this)
Flag of United Palestine (more proposals)
Flag of United China (inspired by , and similar to my flag of Gemer Flag map of counties of the Kingdom of Hungary by hosmich)
Flag of Czechs in Slovakia: Czech bicolor completed with Slovak blue covering 1/3 of flag (proportion of Slovakia in Czechoslovakia)
Flag of Slovaks in the Czech Republic: triangle is typical for Czech land, double cross for Slovak nation
Proposed flag for Basque-Icelandic pidgin
Flag for Afrihili language (based on Swahili and Akan, thus flags of Kenya and Ashanti are used)

And why am I writing in English? I feel comfortable writing in English and I know it is comprehensible for many members of devART. While being fluent in Esperanto, I don't endorse it here. However, if you want, you can practise another languages with me, including CS, DE, EO, HU, SK. But be ready with answer in another language!
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My last journal was about changing the British flag in case of Scottish independence. Now I know the results: 55% for Union, so "Kingdom of Scotland" and "United Kingdom of Southern Great Britain and Northern Ireland" will not appear in next editions of maps. However, if Scotland seceded from the Union, the Union Jack (this term is preferred by Wikipedia) could be unchanged. The Union Jack was created in 1606 after Union of the Crowns and was not changed in 1707 by Union of the Parliaments. In 1801 it was changed while uniting Ireland with Great Britain and not changed in 1921 where Southern Ireland became independent. This tick-tack could make the flag change in 2014 and there was so many possibilities... This one was viral, but I don't believe it was intended for official use. The best non-my proposals in my eyes were this and this . This is similar to one of my older deviations, only Scotland is changed for Cornwall. Humorous flags are not in my interest, you can find plenty of them.

But wait. Does current Union Jack really have to change? Wales is not represented separately, only Cross of St. George reminds Welsh dragon. By the way, I would not accept Welsh dragon on flag of the United Kingdom. It is so complex and unrelated to the rest of UK. Welsh symbol could be something simpler, maybe only two colors (white-green or black-yellow) added to British flag. However, no minority has intrinsic right to being represented on flag of a compound state. Imagine flag of India: orange for Hinduism, green for Islam, blue for Buddhism. Are Indian Christians striking for its change? Christianity is part of India since St. Thomas, almost 2000 years, but it has no place in flag of India. Iraq: another country with religious and linguistic plurality. Its flag reads "Allah is Great" in Arabic. No Kurdish, no Aramaic, no Christian symbol. I know Allah means "God" in Arabic, so different religions can say their god is great. (Off-topic: many deities in the world are all "pointers" to one "object" of God. The difference is in "type check".) So not representing Wales (and Cornwall, which is undoubtedly part of England) in British flag is OK. Another problem is representing Scotland in rump United Kingdom. As I said here, Scot-free Britain has no obligation to change its flag (neither has Australia etc.) Scotland is still part of British past and many Scots live in other parts of UK (e.g. Ulster Scots and Alex Ferguson). In comment on this deviation I mentioned two flags, they are here: British Republic and United Kingdom . Their description is in the comment. But return to the topic. Many countries lost a territory, but still represent it on flag. I want not to mention Malaysia and Sudan, but Aragon, Portugal and Romania.

Coat of arms of Aragon (present in its flag) and flag of Sardinia

Do you see that? Sardinia was part of the Crown of Aragon and even today, when they are inseparable regions of Spain and Italy, CoA of Aragon features symbol of Sardinia. Crown of Aragon was united with Crown of Castile in 1469 and formally dissolved in 1716. Kingdom of Sardinia was perfectly fused with Piedmont in 1847 and in 1861 united in the Kingdom of Italy. There is no more common power for Aragon and Sardinia, except for European Union etc. But Sardinians are calm and don't want change of Aragonese symbols.

First flag of Brazil, flag of the United Kingdom of Portugal, Brazil and Algarves and current flag of Portugal

Armillary sphere is navigation tool used by Portuguese when they travelled through Atlantic Ocean to Brazil. It soon became symbol of Brazil, because Ocean was only way to connect Brazil with Portugal. It is no more official symbol of Brazil, but it still lives in unofficial symbols. However, in 1911 it became part of official flag of Portugal. In that time Portugal had no power over Brazil. Brazilians are not worry about that, because this is in no way irredentism: Portugal still borders the Atlantic Ocean.

Coat of arms of Romania and flag of Moldova

Now you must see it. Moldova was part of Romania during interbellum. Even today the bull of Moldova is present in CoA of Romania. Tricolor and eagle are in both too, but they are common symbols, because blue-yellow comes from Wallachia and yellow-red from Moldavia. When Romania still has bull in CoA and red stripe in flag, why shouldn't United Kingdom have St. Andrew's Saltire and Scottish lion rampant in its symbols?

Flags are adapting to countries, and CoAs too, but they have their own life where tradition is more than politics. Republic of Macedonia removed red star of socialism from its CoA in 2009, eighteen years after fall of SFR Yugoslavia. I am aware of Greeks hating everyone who calls FYROM "Macedonia". For them I have this statement: Slavs of FYROM have full right call themselves "Macedonians", same like Boers can call themselves "Afrikaners", literally "Africans". Neither Skopians are descendants of Alexander's Macedonia, nor Boers are descendants of Black Africa. But they NOW LIVE in Macedonia or Africa respectively. There are even Slavs in southern Macedonia, they are more Macedonian than Skopians, because Skopje is on the edge of historic Macedonia, while Thessaloniki is its center. Slavic Southern Macedonian was e.g. mother of Sts. Cyril and Methodius and Božidara Turzonovová, living in Slovakia. And not to forget: creating new flags where there is no demand is useless. It is not total waste of time, one can learn a lot of graphics, history and practise art skills, but sharing these flags as future official proposals is trolling. United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland has no demand for new flag today. United States of America have already prepared flag with 51 and 52 stars. This article is therefore gallery of artwork, if it isn't trolling. However, I would prefer flag not counting the number of states, because if California is divided in six states, I won't like flag with 55 stars. Maybe future flag of USA will be in my request list. I have graduated from engineering, so I try to be more real than in 2013, when I started with deviantART.
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When you read this entry, referendum about Scottish independence is probably over. I am writing this on September 12th 2014, so I don't know the result. I personally like the Union Flag (this term is less controversial than Union Jack), so I am not prone to change it. However, this is in no way an argument against independence of Scotland! Flags are adapting to countries, not vice versa. I divide this entry in parts: some will be about human-geographic implications of the 'Yes' vote and the others about future flag of the rump United Kingdom (rUK).

Britannia and Hispania were Roman provinces, names of currently fragile countries are derived from them. The broader term "British Isles" still covers Ireland and "Great Britain" will still cover even independent Scotland. The rUK would be under double pressure: to change its flag as well as name. Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia dropped the Vergina Sun from its flag, but preserved the name "Macedonia", what still upsets Greeks. The situation is similar as if Timor-Leste insisted on name "Timor" for the country despite Indonesia. "Republic of Northern Macedonia" would be elegant solution. But now return to the point.

What is Northern Ireland? Northern Ireland are the last six Irish counties in the United Kingdom. What is "united" in the Kingdom? Great Britain and Northern Ireland. What is Great Britain? The greatest of the British islands, itself covered by union of England and Scotland for centuries. If the union between England and Scotland dissolves, would rUK still be "United Kingdom"? Should Northern Ireland be automatically part of rUK? If not and it will declare either independence or union with Ireland (God save the Unionists then), the rUK will consist only of England and Wales, territory covered by Kingdom of England or Roman Britannia in the past. While most people can consider "England" and "Britain" as synonyms, they aren't and won't be after repealing of Wales and Berwick Act 1746 by Interpretation Act 1978 in order not to upset Welshmen. Wales was not separate country of the UK when current Union Flag (cUF) was adopted, but now it is. So the future British flag (fBf) should definitely include an element for Wales.

The most known symbol of Wales is the Red Dragon flag, followed by flag of Saint David. Despite many Welsh-containing proposals for British flag contain black and yellow (sometimes only black), I think green is more suitable as Welsh element. cUF contains three colors: red, white and blue. Flag of Wales contains three colors: white, green and red. Combination of cUF and flag of Wales has only four colors and can look like this or this: . If dropping Scottish blue and adding Cornish black, the result is this: Note that I am against changing cUF if Scotland rests in the union. However, adding an element for Cornwall, which is not a country, is inconsistent like not representing Wales, so no gain (IMHO). Compromise can be seen here:

Northern Ireland is represented in cUF by St. Patrick's Saltire. The same was representing whole of Ireland before Irish independence. Therefore some try to represent Northern Ireland in fBf by yellow and red from flag of Ulster. There have even been proposals for renaming Northern Ireland to Ulster. There is no United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ulster, because Donegal, Cavan and Monaghan are parts of Ulster, they are parts of northern Ireland, but they ARE NOT part of "Northern Ireland" or UK. Renaming Northern Ireland to Ulster would require consent from these counties and they would leave Ulster. Then the fUf could look like this: or . Flag of Northern Ireland then could look like this: . If you prefer another design, I don't mind.

Warning! Flag should symbolize country as a whole, regardless of its borders. Thus maps or explicit counting of subdivisions (sorry USA) on an official flag is not so good idea. How does it apply to cUF? It combines symbols of three countries (Wales was not country then), but future flag of rUK doesn't have to do so! What about a new design with pan-rUK symbol? But - what is that symbol? English lions symbolizing three countries of rUK? Tudor rose ? It is an English flower, adding shamrock and daffodil (or leek?) would make the flag crowded. Picture of landscape, like Ukraine and Estonia did? This is rather ugly than British (sorry author). Idea of a pan-symbol of rUK is interesting, but it is almost impossible to find a symbol not consisting from symbols of constituent countries. It is very nature of UK (and rUK) that it contains more areas of identity. By this term I think about a constituent country, dependency, Cornwall, Orkney or Shetland. Orkney and Shetland were demanding a referendum about leaving Scotland just week after Scottish referendum. It was not approved. If it were, these islands would decide whether to rest in UK, rest in Scotland or become independent. Choice 2 would be pleasing for Scottish politicians, but I don't support it. If Orkney and Shetland remained part of rUK as "Northern Isles", cUF doesn't have to change. Patron saint of Northern Isles would be Saint Andrew and his saltire is preserved. But what if not?

If Scotland leaves United Kingdom as a whole and rUK changes its flag, this won't affect flags of independent countries and their dependencies (Australia, Cook Islands, Hawaii). They are no more under Westminster (although some are still under Crown). However, flags of rUK Overseas Territories should no more contain obsolete cUF. So choosing a new flag for rUK is of great importance. I am aware of this and therefore I prepared these proposals after refusing many worse ones:
(Explanation is in Imgur gallery).

Beside them I would accept this: The black can be seen as mourning after loss of Scotland, Welsh cross of St. David or Cornish cross of St. Piran. I don't like these proposals:
     (despite this one is pretty).

And why did I mention Hispania in the beginning? Hispania covered all Iberian Peninsula, but Portugal will no more be part of Spain, as Republic of Ireland won't join United Kingdom again. Galicia and Northern Ireland are mixed regions, but they are royalist enough for not to join the neighboring republic. Basque Country and Wales are quite peaceful, after persecution of their languages now they possess enough devolved powers. Only Catalonia and Scotland are restless about independence. I agree personal union between England and Scotland should not become perfect fusion, because now "perfect union" seems to be impossible. The same can be told about Castile and Aragon when fusing into Spain. While they profited from colonies, no one asked about separatism. Now Catalonia feels like colony what would never become if Spain were union rather than fusion (the union might have included Portugal). I want not to start flamewar, so I am finishing. Flags of Spain are perfect and in case of Catalan independence neither Catalan nor Spanish flag has to be changed. They have another problems: entrenched clause against separatism and unclear borders of "Catalan Countries".
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Continuation of this and this list, because their size limit was reached.
Here I list languages that don't have official status, ISO 639-1 code, own Wikipedia or Canov's table. They still can have own flag, for example because its ethnicity has flag. Sometimes the language has explicit linguistic flag. Flags of some constructed languages are listed here. These constructed languages are listed in previous entries: Esperanto, Ido, Interlingua, Interlingue, Volapük, Novial, Lojban. The rest is here.

Ethicities listed in list on English Wikipedia
Ethnicities listed in other Wikimedia pages
Ethnicities listed in Encyclopaedia Heraldica.ru (many of them don't have distinct language!)
  • Herzegovine Croat regional
  • Franco-Swiss cultural
  • Belgian German subdivision
  • Epiric Greek ethnic
  • Bosnian Serb ethnic
  • Polish Tatar fusion
  • Thracian Turk historic
  • Iranian Arab ethnic
  • Kayah (variant of Karen) proposal? (official flag)
  • Moro covers more languages
  • Naga cognate
  • Palaung ethnic
  • Acadian cultural
  • Afro-American ethnic
  • Lenca ethnic
  • Australian Aboriginal ethnic
Languages listed in list of language names
Ethnicities listed in category on Commons
Native American flags (not all flags are linguistic, "tribal" is official flag of tribal government, opposed to "ethnic" that is often unofficial)
Languages requested for Wikimedia projects
Other living languages
Extinct languagesConstructed languages with Canov's table
Micronational languages
Languages listed in Wikipedia template
(All missing symbols are desirable)Constructed languages with flags on Wikimedia projects
Other non-artistic constructed languages
Artistic and alternate history languages
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Here is list of official languages with their symbols. The list is already full file and I wanted to mention unofficial languages too. Here are they. Sometimes I refer to macrolanguage listed in first list, don't worry about it.
PS: If nothing is written by a language name, it means that I have not yet uploaded the symbol, not that I have no symbol. The symbols I collect here and to offline page that I can show to people who ask me.

Languages with ISO 639-1 code
Languages recognized, but not official
Languages with Wikipedia
Languages with project in Wikimedia Incubator

Languages for which Michael Canov have collected periodic table

This is all from Canov's list, but my list continues here.
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Outline of me (Epilogue) by hosmich, journal

How to do vexillological trolling by hosmich, journal

Flag of the Scot-free United Kingdom by hosmich, journal

Symbols of small languages by hosmich, journal

Symbols of unofficial languages by hosmich, journal