Shield of Cuenca (Ecuador): History and Meaning - science - 2023



The Cuenca coat of arms It is one of the three national symbols of the city of Cuenca, which is officially called Santa Ana de los Cuatro Ríos de Cuenca, and is part of the Azuay province in the southern center of the Republic of Ecuador.

The coat of arms, like the flag and anthem of a state or a nation, is part of the culture of the area to which it belongs.

Since this is designed illustrating parts of the history that the ancestors lived, it is a way of spreading the values ​​acquired over the years.

History of the Cuenca coat of arms

The history of the coat of arms of the city of Cuenca in Ecuador is related to the city of Cuenca in Spain. When they founded the city it was at the request of the Spanish viceroy of Peru, Don Andrés Hurtado de Mendoza, because the territory is very similar to the Spanish city, which is the place of his birth. It is for this reason that he decided to add Cuenca to the name Santa Ana de los Cuatro Ríos.

However, this is not the only thing that relates the history of the coat of arms of the Ecuadorian city with the Spanish city. Due to the intrinsic relationship of the Spanish viceroy of Peru with the Spanish city of Cuenca, he wanted a beautiful coat of arms similar to the coat of arms of the Spanish city to be designed.

However, the inhabitants of the new city went ahead and sketched the coat of arms that would go on to represent their city.

The motion to own an individual coat of arms for the city was officially approved and registered on January 23, 1559.

However, as the years passed, the shield underwent some modifications that later, in 1915, were discarded when the records detailing the shield were found.


Cuenca's coat of arms is divided into four parts by chains that cross in the shape of an X, and are joined in the center by a ring that represents love of the country. Because it is a city, the ring in the middle has a crown.

On the lateral sides of the X there are lions symbolizing courage. At the bottom there is a sea and a land with trees that represent the abundance of rivers and vegetation in the city.

Likewise, "First God and then you", referring to "you" to the Virgin Mary, is a transcription that is part of the shield on a cloth with a waving shape at the top.

It should be noted that the strings are also symbolic. The chain that goes from the upper left to the lower right represents the faith of the population, and the other chain refers to honesty.

On the other hand, together they represent the bases that support the city, since the upper part of the X refers to the city of Cuenca.

A feature that was preserved from the Spanish city is the silver poplar leaves that were abundant in that city.


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