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Kingdom of Dahomey

Historical flag

Last modified: 2022-10-22 by bruce berry
Keywords: benin | dahomey |
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image by Jaume Ollé, 12 Sept 1996

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Kingdom of Dahomey (19th century)

The Béhanzin king (1889-1892, born 1844, died 1906), successor of the king Gle-Gle, had a flag (ratio 43:59) with a light blue field. The shield is yellow with a dark grey shark, and white egg and tusks; green palm; light green snakes, and a white ribbon. Some inscriptions suggest manufacture by one of the Portuguese who had commercial relations along the coast. The French General Alfred Dodds captured a flag in the Dahomey royal Palace at Abomey on 18 November 1892. It was sent to the Musee de l'Arme in Paris and was transferred in 1932 to the Musee Colonial (now the Musée des Arts Africains et Océaniens).  Details of the flag is reported in the issue 145 of the Flag Bulletin. That museum has an engraving by Albert Vallon, showing a French mission being received by King Ghezo (1818-1858), with a different flag, which suggests that each king may have had his own flag. 

The flag used by King Ghezo is shown above.
Jaume Ollé,
12 Sept 1996