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View Full Version : Why do the Saints use the Fleur-de-Lys


Smograider
27.09.2010, 05:35 PM
This question has been bugging me for nearly 30 years now, but have had nobody to ask.

Given that this is the symbol of French Royalty, or to put it another way - the symbol of Louisiana's colonialist oppressors.

It was in fact Napoleon Bonaparte that granted the state it's freedom,This in turn lead to the American war of independence, and thus to the America we know today.

Would it not be more apt for the Saints to use the Napoleon's symbol - the Bumblebee as their emblem?

Thoughts, answers anyone?

Arathrael
28.09.2010, 08:39 AM
It strikes me as a bit of a daft question to be honest.

The Saints use the fleur-de-lys because it's a symbol of New Orleans (obviously), and it's been a symbol of New Orleans from the beginning, with the French founders flying a fleur-de-lys flag.

You can argue that a city or state should have abandoned all symbols associated with their colonialist oppressors, but clearly they didn't, and not unreasonably IMO.

As for the suggestions of using Napolean's symbol - would it really make sense to drop the symbol of your founders to take the symbol of a man who sold you?

Edit: also, the fleur-de-lys looks good. That's reason enough in itself. :-)

marcseven
28.09.2010, 10:18 AM
I think it's a bit harsh to say it's a daft question

Basically N.O. has no problem with its french roots. They quote french, eat french and really if your gonna connect yourself with a country, you gonna choose the regal pageantry of hundreds of years or the short and slightly awkward reign of Napoleon. It would be like choosing Roundheads over cavaliers. Bumblebee indeed!

I had a quick look at Dave Dixons book (the founder of the Saints) but he doesn't mention it.

On the Saint website it says this:
The Fleur de Lis, the emblem most closely associated with the New Orleans Saints and worn on the team's helmets, is a symbol from the Court of Louis XIV. It is a french word that stands for "flower of the lily". The Fleur de Lis is also a symbol for New Orleans, which was adopted during the French occupation of Louisiana from 1682-1762. Traditionally, it has been used to represent French royalty, and in that sense, it is said to signify perfection, light and life. Due to its' three petals, the fleur-de-lis has also been used to represent the Holy Trinity.

N.O. strongly identifies with it's french roots, in it's architecture and food, also two of the largest influxes of immigrants would have been french speaking the free Haitians and the French Canadians (Cajans). Some there even consider the US the oppressors.

Hell when other US teams want to insult us they call us French ******

Hope that goes some way to answering your question.

Laissez les bon temps rouler

Arathrael
28.09.2010, 11:02 AM
I think it's a bit harsh to say it's a daft question
I said a bit of a daft question. (I was thinking specifically of the bit about the bumblebee when I said it. And I stand by that!)

marcseven
28.09.2010, 12:08 PM
I said a bit of a daft question. (I was thinking specifically of the bit about the bumblebee when I said it. And I stand by that!)

Well I'm behind you there 100%,

Especially as now we have the Hornets!

martin3026
28.09.2010, 06:40 PM
Anyone that's been to Louisiana will know that the fleur de lys is So much more than an NFL teams logo, it's on building, churches, gates, and Walls all of them hundreds of years older than the Saints.

The NFL found out to their cost last year when they attempted to stop people selling shirts with the fleur de lys and Who Dat written on them, they were laughed out of court.

DarrenSQh
30.09.2010, 10:18 AM
If you go to New Orleans the Symbol is everywhere. Cars, Buildings, windows, even the bins. It is the symbol of the city and fits in nicely with the whole French Quarter style of the city.

Smograider
30.09.2010, 12:42 PM
Thanks for the replies guys, much appreciated, they were an interesting read; although Arathrael's comment 'As for the suggestions of using Napolean's symbol - would it really make sense to drop the symbol of your founders to take the symbol of a man who sold you? strikes me as a bit stupid.

Sold? Sold to who? Napoleon granted the state it's freedom - i.e allowed it to be an independent state, free form foreign control (the rest of the country was effectively ruled by Britain at the time) the state got it's name due to being owned by Lois. Napoleon did not sell it to anyone, and nor did he appropriate it (like French Royalty did), sheesh:rolleyes:. I was under the impression that 'independence' was a big thing for Americans. Apparently, that only applies if the ruler was English. If Napoleon had not acted the way he did, they would have had to fight the French too.

The fact still remains the Fluer de Lys is everywhere because French Royalty had it put there. The symbol does look good I agree:cool: It still strikes me as odd, that a vehemently Republican country adheres to a symbol of French Royalty (now extinct). Would you not find it strange if say, Atlanta used the Union Jack, or the Royal coat of arms? After all, Georgia gets it's name due to King George, and English Rule.

My suggestion of the Saints using the Bumblebee was tongue in cheek really (I should have used a ;) there, my bad):) Just thought they would have used something else that's all.

I am not trying to turn this into a big debate, or offend Saints fans for that matter. I was just curious.

Some seem to feel that 'curiosity' = 'stupidity'. Fortunately, that's not a dominant view - otherwise, we would still all be huddled in caves, oblivious to the concept of 'fire', and would never have wondered why the Sun makes the ground feel hot.

DarrenSQh
30.09.2010, 07:06 PM
Its spelt Fleur De Li, by the way.

Smograider
30.09.2010, 07:39 PM
Its spelt Fleur De Li, by the way.

LOL:D I think you will find that either spelling is accepted. But if that's what you prefer - de li it is:)

marcseven
30.09.2010, 07:59 PM
He freed the city from the Spanish then later he sold to the emerging US, to to p*ss off the English. Hoping the US would become a power to put the English in their place. At the time the US owned about half of what we recognize as the States they had taken it from the English twenty years earlier. Most of the east coast was already American but as colonialism or aggressive expansion was against the fledgling constitution, they offered to buy if from Napoleon who owed them money and was short of cash as a result of his fight against the English and several revolts in the west indies.

They paid 15 Million USD.

Napoleon was a caretaker at best, the french didn't really oppress Louisiana they made it, then it was added to especially by french Canadians chased out of Arcadia (Nova Scotia) by the English. (this of course ignores the land was originally inhabited by the Native Americans since 2000 bc, but that's a whole different discussion)

I think the point is most of the inhabitants of New Orleans at that time considered themselves french right upto the civil war 50, years after the
Louisiana Purchase. Its similar to the french Canadians. They would have considered themselves taken over by the Americans and this would have been seen especially later when the school system was reformed away from the french language and also segregation laws were introduced that had not previously be enforced in the region.

New Orleans especially then and to some degree now, considers itself cut from a different cloth from the rest of the US and that does not go without resentment from the rest of the country.

Dude i hope i caused no offense, i love talking about the place.

Smograider
30.09.2010, 08:18 PM
He freed the city from the Spanish then later he sold to the emerging US, to to p*ss off the English. Hoping the US would become a power to put the English in their place. At the time the US owned about half of what we recognize as the States they had taken it from the English twenty years earlier. Most of the east coast was already American but as colonialism or aggressive expansion was against the fledgling constitution, they offered to buy if from Napoleon who owed them money and was short of cash as a result of his fight against the English and several revolts in the west indies.

They paid 15 Million USD.

Napoleon was a caretaker at best, the french didn't really oppress Louisiana they made it, then it was added to especially by french Canadians chased out of Arcadia (Nova Scotia) by the English. (this of course ignores the land was originally inhabited by the Native Americans since 2000 bc, but that's a whole different discussion)

I think the point is most of the inhabitants of New Orleans at that time considered themselves french right upto the civil war 50, years after the
Louisiana Purchase. Its similar to the french Canadians. They would have considered themselves taken over by the Americans and this would have been seen especially later when the school system was reformed away from the french language and also segregation laws were introduced that had not previously be enforced in the region.

New Orleans especially then and to some degree now, considers itself cut from a different cloth from the rest of the US and that does not go without resentment from the rest of the country.

Dude i hope i caused no offense, i love talking about the place.

Ok, I guess I stand corrected then. lol:D Maybe I'm clouded by the anti royal, revolutionary aspect of Bonaparte (oh, I'm such a romantic):) Long time since I've read anything too - so obviously getting a bit mixed up:o

No offence caused at all marcseven:) It's interesting, and I thank you for responding, and correcting my slightly muddled memory. Hope no offense has been caused by me either.

Arathrael
04.10.2010, 11:20 AM
Haven't been on for a bit, but marcseven has already said what I'd have said. :)

Just to reiterate though, by "bit of a daft question" I emphatically did not mean "you're stupid for asking it", and I apologise if it was taken that way!

Audio
13.10.2010, 05:19 PM
St. Louis (the city, not the Rams) was also founded by the French and maintains a Fleur-de-lis on its flag as well. We obviously don't celebrate it as much as they do in N'awlins, but I just thought I'd chime in with that random bit of trivia. In the US we tend to celebrate those sorts of historical roots.

Smograider
13.10.2010, 07:30 PM
Haven't been on for a bit, but marcseven has already said what I'd have said. :)

Just to reiterate though, by "bit of a daft question" I emphatically did not mean "you're stupid for asking it", and I apologise if it was taken that way!

Just saw this today. I'm afraid I did take it this way at the time, not sure why now - it's not like I'm immune to the stupid question:)

Your apology is wholeheartedly accepted Arathrael - thanks for responding.

I hope I did not offend thee also.

marcseven
14.10.2010, 10:22 AM
St. Louis (the city, not the Rams) was also founded by the French and maintains a Fleur-de-lis on its flag as well. We obviously don't celebrate it as much as they do in N'awlins, but I just thought I'd chime in with that random bit of trivia. In the US we tend to celebrate those sorts of historical roots.

Really you just have to look at the Irish on the east coast to back this up. Celtic's anyone?

Even the Vikings is an oblique reference to the Scandinavian roots of the population isn't it?