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30/12/2010

Fluctuat Nec Mergitur, the motto and city coat of arms, Paris, France


This is a photo taken on the main door of the Mairie de Paris.
Fluctuat nec mergitur is a Latin phrase meaning "It is tossed by the waves, but does not sink".
This phrase is the motto of Paris, France, and is present in the city coat of arms depicting a ship floating on a rough sea. Both motto and city arms have their origins in the river Seine boatsman's corporation; this powerful hanse ruled the city's trade and commerce as early as the Roman era. Although this corporation through the centuries became an entity resembling more a municipal government than a trade organization, they maintained their original arms and motto, and it is for this that the Mairie de Paris bears them still today.

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