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Coat of Arms and History

Coat of Arms of the Ilm district
© Ilm-Kreis 

Coat of Arms of the Ilm district

On the 1st of February 1995, the Thuringian Administration Office agreed to the coat of arms of the Ilm district as follows:

The coat of arms is quartered into two blue and two golden parts, depicting in the first quarter a black and red armoured eagle looking to the left. The second and third quarter show a golden and red armoured lion walking upright to the left side. The fourth of the quarters depicts a black hen with red armour and red crown and lobe standing on a black mountain.

The coat of arms depicts symbols of the most important houses that ruled the territory in former times. In the past, the main part of the present day Ilm district was in possession of the Princes of Schwarzburg. For this reason, the symbol of their coat of arms, the golden lion on blue ground, was incorporated twice into the coat of arms of the Ilm district. To represent those areas which later on were in possession of the house of Henneberg - especially Ilmenau and its surroundings - people chose the symbol of the Count of Henneberg - a hen. Mainly because of aesthetic reasons the hen is portrayed standing on a black mountain instead of on three green hillocks. The area of Arnstadt is represented by the city’s own coat of arms. At the same time, the black eagle on golden ground can symbolize the principality of Schwarzburg, since Arnstadt was under the rule of the house of Schwarzburg.

On the 1st of February 1995, the flag of the Ilm district was approved. It is quartered into two black and two golden parts, depicting the coat of arms of the district.

A short historical survey

The present day Ilm district consists of six former Thuringian princely houses: the Counts of Käfernburg, the Counts of Henneberg, the dynasties of Schwarzburg and the houses of Saxony-Gotha, Saxony-Weimar and Saxony-Meiningen.

In the 14th century, the city of Ilmenau just like the city of Arnstadt temporarily was under the rule of the dynasties Käfernburg and Schwarzburg. At that time the present day city of Ilmenau, which was mentioned in a document for the first time in 1273, was already confirmed as city in 1341. In 1343, the city of Ilmenau was sold to the Counts of Hennerberg; the city of Arnstadt remained under the rule of the house of Schwarzburg.

In 1583, the last member of the house of Henneberg died and the city of Ilmenau passed into the possession of the house of Saxony.

In 1920, the state of Thuringia and the administrative district of Arnstadt were established. The latter extended from Rockhausen in the North to Masserberg in the South, from Riechheim in the East to Holzhausen in the West; Arnstadt was an independent city and had the seat of the administrative district.

In 1951, the city of Arnstadt was affiliated to the administrative district which in 1952 was separated into the two districts Arnstadt and Ilmenau. Later on, the Arnstadt district was allocated to the county of Erfurt, the Ilmenau district to the county of Suhl.

After the local government reorganisation in 1994, both districts were reunited to the administrative district called Ilm district and its district capital Arnstadt.