The flag of the Natalia Republic was the official flag of this short-lived South African state, which existed from 1839 to 1843.


Emigrant Boers ('voortrekkers') from the
Cape Colony The Cape Colony ( nl, Kaapkolonie), also known as the Cape of Good Hope, was a British Empire, British colony in present-day South Africa named after the Cape of Good Hope. The British colony was preceded by an earlier Corporate colony that b ...
established an independent state in 1839, on territory conquered from the Zulus. They named it 'Natalia'. It is uncertain what flag – if any – they flew at first, but on 24 December 1839 they raised a new flag at Port Natal (now
Durban Durban ( ) ( zu, eThekwini, from meaning 'the bay'), nicknamed ''Durbs'',Ishani ChettyCity nicknames in SA and across the worldArticle on ''news24.com'' from 25 October 2017. Retrieved 2021-03-05.
. The same flag was raised in the capital, Pietermaritzburg, in January 1840. British forces invaded the republic in May 1842 and occupied Pietermaritzburg two months later. The flag was probably discontinued at that time or shortly afterwards. After three years of military occupation, the United Kingdom formally annexed Natalia, as 'Natal', in May 1844.


The flag and its design passed into obscurity. They returned to public notice only after the South African Archives acquired the papers of Professor Ulrich Lauts in 1925. Back in 1847, Lauts had published a book (in the Netherlands) in which he described the flag as being in the colours of the Dutch flag (i.e. red, white and blue) and in the same order. "The white, however, stretches from a point in the middle of the hoist to the full width of the cloth at the end of the flag".Lauts, U.G. (1847). ''Die Kaapsche Landverhuizers''.Brownell, F.G. (1987). 'Heraldry in Natal' in ''Natalia'' (December 1987). An article in a popular magazine in 1928 brought this description of the flag to the public's attention.Blommaert. W. (1928) 'Die vlag van die eerste Voortrekkers' in ''Die Huisgenoot'' (25 May 1928). Illustrations based on it have been published in many articles and books since then. The Voortrekkers youth organisation, founded in 1931, adopted the Natalia flag as its own.Dalebout, J.A. (1934). ''Eerste Handboekie vir die Voortrekkers''. The
Voortrekker Monument
Voortrekker Monument
used the Natalia flag in its Cenotaph Hall. The flag is generally made and depicted as rectangular, in the proportions 2:3. However, a contemporary painting of the flag, on a document dated 1842, which was found in the Algemene Rijksarchief in the Netherlands in 1953, shows a square flag.De Kock, W.J. (1966). 'Die wortels van ons republiek' in ''Huisgenoot'' (27 May 1966).Schoeman, J.M. (1967). 'Die vlag van die Republiek Natalia' in ''Archives News'' (February 1967).



* Brownell, F.G. (1993). ''National and Provincial Symbols''. * Burgers, A.P. (1997). ''Sovereign Flags over Southern Africa''. * Burgers, A.P. (2008). ''The South African Flag Book''. * Pama, C. (1965). ''Lions and Virgins''.

See also

* Coat of arms of Natal * List of South African flags * Flag of the Cape Colony * Flag of Goshen * Flag of Natal * Flag of the Nieuwe Republiek * Flag of the Orange River Colony * Flag of South Africa * Flag of the South African Republic * Flag of Stellaland * Flag of Transvaal {{DEFAULTSORT:Natalia Republic, Flag of the 1839 introductions Flags of South Africa South African heraldry Historical flags