Municipal Coat of Arms

Heraldic description of the coat of arms

The coat of arms is red and has two silver towers with pitched roofs on it; in front at their bases is a black shield – on it a golden lion with a red crown on its head. The defense towers are a symbol for the fortified town. The shield with the lion on it is the coat of arms of the reeves of Weida, the town lords before 1373.

That’s it for the explanation of the current coat of arms. However, this coat of arms, which has been used since 1960, is similar to the oldest coat of arms that we know of, which also shows two towers and a shield with a lion on it in the foreground. Although the circumscription didn’t say “Stadt Hof” but had the writing Latin “CIVITATIS D(E) CURIA”. The two letters “A and N next to the towers are reference to the old (“Antiqua”) and new (“Nova” civitas) parts of town.

This coat of arms has changed in the course of time: On the big town seal of 1561 two naked ”savages” and a ground were added as embellishment. On an illustration of 1581, is for the first time, an angel dressed in red above the rim of the vertical standing shield and the towers have blue “helmed roofs”. Late in the 16th century it had become a trend to use angels as supporters especially in civil coats of arms. Depending on the depiction, the two “savages” first held clubs and later on they held uprooted trees or those that were still in the ground; the color of the angel’s dress changed now and then.

Some illustrations and seals had a different form until 1840. In one there is a shield with a crest, two towers that are connected by a triangular gable and in between those towers is an angel holding a shield with a lion on it. On 9th May 1840, King Ludwig approved the return to an older version with the following text: “Between two red towers with helmed roofs, a black shield, on it an uncrowned, golden, leaping lion. The shield is being held by a silver angel with golden wings. Two savages, wearing green loincloth and green crowns made of leaves on their heads and each holding a tree in their hands, are leaning against the two towers. All those elements are on a slab that is covered with greenery and under all of it there’s a golden banner that says “Hof”.

As you can imagine this coat of arms was not suitable to be used as a seal in all its complexity. There were a couple of suggestions to change it in 1929, 1932 and 1950. When the town flag in yellow and black was introduced in 1954, the adjustment of the coat of arms was aimed at, too. The oldest drafts were strongly considered: the towers were portrayed according to the style in the Elbe and Saale area which includes squared stones; the two savages und the angel were omitted as they had been added in a later version. At the same time, the coat of arms got the correct heraldic embedding in the shield.

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City Archive:
Stadtarchiv Hof
Unteres Tor 9
95028 Hof

Telefon   +49 (0)9281 815 1620 oder 1621
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