Danube Swabian History
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Hans Diplich

Creator of the Danube Swabian Crest

Coat of arms originator, 1950

As a distinctive imperial sign the eagle holds his wings protectively over the Pannonian countryside (Roman province) in the central region of the Danube and symbolizes the obligation of the Holy Roman Emperor to protect those borders of the empire. The emperor Charlemagne chose the eagle as imperial symbol in the 9th century. Since the 12th century it has represented power and unity as the German coat of arms.

The wavy chevron symbolizes the Danube - the river of destiny for the new ethnic group on which the ancestors traveled in box-boats called "Ulmer Schachtel" (named after the city of embarkation, Ulm). They settled on both sides of the central Danube regions from the Raab River in the north-west to the Iron Gate in the south-east, partially as the emperor’s guards along the defensive military border (protecting against further attacks). A German landscape was thereby created. The geographical aspect of the group’s name refers to the Danube, however, the ethnic content does not refer to a regional dialect, but rather to ethnological and historical factors - combined with settlement and folklore - and has become an understandable expression. Amidst fertile farm land which the Danube-Swabians made arable stands the strong fortress of Temeschburg (Timisoara), a symbol of imperial, German defense fortifications and military border against the Turks. The fortress flanked by the half-moon, the temporal symbol of Islam representing the Turkish threats to Europe which was declining during the 17th and 18th centuries; there is the bright rising sun, symbol for Christ, who is honored as the sun of justice and true light - a focal point for the future, and therefore representing victory and a new beginning for the Western, Christian culture against barbarity and retreating Islam. This victory was accomplished through Imperial government and Danube-Swabian settlement in the Pannonian basin during the 18th century. The six towers of the fortress represent the six regions of settlement for the Danube-Swabians: Little Alfold (the mountains of south-western Hungary), Swabian Turkey (south of Lake Balato, Slavonia-Syrmia, Backa (Batschka), Banat, Satu-Mare with the Crisana-Maramures region.

The coat of arms show Germany’s national colors - black, red and gold, the symbol German unification as well as colors of German League, are incorporated into the coat of arms because Danube-Swabians history developed within the framework of the Holy Roman Empire (under German kings) until 1806.

White is the symbol for the peaceful sentiment of Danube-Swabians; green represents hope and also the new fields of their homeland which were cultivated to become a grain region.

Coat of arms originator: Hans Diplich, 1950

Also see: Hans Diplich, Banat Teacher, Author, Publisher, Artist

***

Hans Diplich was born on February 23, 1909, in Großkomlosch/Banat. He completed elementary school in his home village, and graduated from the German Realgymnasium (secondary school) in Temeswar (1927). He then studied German language and literature, as well as Romanian language and literature, in Bucharest, Leipzig, and Münster (Westfalen). He taught at the Banatia in Temeswar from 1933 to 1941. From 1941 to 1944 he was principal of the high school in Weißkirchen/Fehértemplom/Bela Crkva. After 1945 he published many works in West Germany. He has been characterized as a 'typical son of the Banat heath'. Growing up in a village of Old Hungary, with German and Romanian inhabitants, he developed an exceptional empathy for those around him, resulting in admirable translations and adaptations of Romanian and Hungarian poetry. [Nick Tullius]

Hans Diplich died in Germany, in 1990. The following book depicts his works and their impact:

Werk und Wirkung / herausgegeben von der Landmannschaft der Banater Schwaben in Zusammenarbeit mit dem Kulturverband der Banater Deutschen ; Redaktion, Horst Fassel. Munchen: Landsmannschaft der Banater Schwaben, 1994. [Jacob Steigerwald]

 

 


[Published at DVHH.org 2004 by Jody McKim Pharr]


 

 

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