This site is a mirror of the original site, made in 2022 by Heraldry of the World. The original site is unaltered. This mirror functions as an archive to keep the material available on-line.
All rights remain with the late Hubert de Vries, the original site owner.

The Coat of Arms of Jakarta








Kotapradja Djakarta Raja

Daerah Kusus Ibu Kota Jakarta




Back to Indonesia




Archeological findings trace the history of modern-day Jakarta back to the fifth century. By the 16th  century, it was a thriving port city known as Sunda Kelapa. At that time, the Hindu kingdom of Pajajaran ruled the area from a place now known as Bogor, in the hills outside Jakarta.

By the time Columbus headed to the East in search of spices, Sunda Kelapa had already developed into a major trading port. Among the first foreigners to set foot here were the Portuguese. In 1522, they made a mutually beneficial agreement with the Pajajaran Kingdom. In return for access to valuable spices, the Portuguese defended the Hindus from the Islamic sultanate of Demak.

Nevertheless, in 22 June 1527, the Javanese Prince Fatahillah, of the Demak Sultanate, successfully defeated the Portuguese armed forces at the site of the Sunda Kelapa. The city was then renamed Jayakarta, meaning “a glorious victory”.


The Dutch Era

The dawn of the 16th  century recorded another milestone: The Dutch landed at Sunda Kelapa  in 1596 and established the United East India Company (Verenigde Oost Indische Compagnie or V.O.C.) in 1602 to join the lucrative spice trade.

Years passed, and the V.O.C. grew stronger. At the pinnacle of its strength in 1635, the Dutch transformed Jayakarta, or Batavia as they called it, into a walled canal city covering some 700 hectares of land. The Dutch-style Jembatan Pasar Ayam originally engineered to bridge both sides remains preserved today as a historical landmark.

During the 18th  century, Batavia grew into an overpopulated city and the quality of life deteriorated. Of particular concern to the Dutch was the rapid growth of the Chinese community, which threatened to tip their balance of power. Attempts by the Dutch to suppress the number of Chinese resulted in a bloodbath in 1740. At least 5,000 Chinese were killed, 500 of whom were killed in Batavia City Hall. The Chinese were then confined to ghettos.

In 1811, the British arrived and took over the land previously controlled by the Dutch. The governor from 1811 to 1816, Sir Thomas Stamford Raffles, resided in Bogor Palace.

After only five years in Batavia, the British handed the colony back to the Dutch, who ruled until the Japanese took over during World War II. In these years Batavia developed into the centre of a vast empire that comprised the largest part of the Indonesian Archipelago. Here the administration of the Dutch Indies (Nederlandsch Indiė) was settled and the majority of the Dutch expatriates lived.


Modern Times

In the early 1900s, young Indonesian scholars began to question the Dutch domination. Historians refer to 1908 as the „Year of Awakening,” when a group of medical students founded the first organization based on the people's political aspirations, Budi Utomo.

During the Japanese occupation, the fight for independence intensified. When the Japanese finally surrendered on 14 August 1945, Admiral Tadashi Maeda brought Soekarno and Mohammad Hatta - the founding fathers of modern Indonesia - to his house on Jalan Imam Bonjol. Here, they drafted the Declaration of Independence. On the morning of 17 August 1945, the manuscript was read aloud at the Koningsplein (today Jalan Proklamasi). The next day, Soekarno became the first president of the Republic of Indonesia and Mohammad Hatta the first vice-president.


* In 1972 the spelling Djakarta was changed into Jakarta




I. Jacatra


No symbol is known for the little settlement of Sunda Kelapa, nor do we know anything about the symbols of power of the Pajajaran princes. The introduction of West-European heraldry on Java occurred with the treaty between the Portuguese and Pajajaran when the a so-called padrćo was erected to commemorate the agreement. This kind of pillars were placed in many places where the Portuguese set foot and they are intended as a sign of the occupation of the inland for te benefit of the king of Portugal. The padrćos from Africa show the royal arms of the king: Argent, five escutcheons Azure 2,1,2, ecach charged with five discs per cross saltire also Argent; and a bordure Gules, charged with seven castles Or. The padrćo of Jacatra shows an armillary-sphere which was the symbol of the realm of Portugal. Initially the personal emblem of king Manuel I (1495-1521), it was used as an emblem for the Portuguese vice-kingdom of India that was established in Goa from 1510 until 1961 when the Portuguese were driven out. 







Portuguese padrćo to the memory of the Portuguese-Pajajaran treaty, August 1522. Discovered 1918 in the Prinsenstraat in Batavia (Jakarta). The Portuguese armillary-sphere and an unreadable inscription beginning with LOS POR…..


II. Batavia


Soon after the conquest of Jacatra by Jan Pietrsz Coen in 1619, a coat of arms for the city was adopted by decree of the 15th of August 1620. 


The text of the decree reads:


15 Augustus 1620


Provisionele instructie voor d'ordinaris luyden van den gerechte in 't Casteel. Vaststelling hunner jurisdictie, die van den Advokaat-fis­kaal, van den Bailluw en van Schepenen. Wapen van Batavia.


[...] Nopende 't geproponeerde van de Stadt Jaccatra met een Wapen te ver­sien om 't segel ter saecken dienvolgende te formeren, is verstaan sulcks nodich  te wesen, ende dat men de Stadt voor haer Wapen ende segel geven sal een swaert van azur in een orange schilt steeckende met de poincte deur een lourieren crans van coleur bruyn-groen. (als hier ter zijden. Actum in 'fort Jacatra datum ut supra ende was ondertekend J.P. Coen, I. Dedel, F. de Carpentier, Martinus Pieter Dirksz, Pieter Barendsz. en Thys Cornelisz. Vleeschhouwer Secretaris). [1]


(Provisional instruction for the ordinaries of the court of justice in the Castle. Establishing their jurisdiction, of the Tax collector, of the Bailiff and of the aldormen. Arms of Batavia.

It being proposed to provide the City of Jacatra with a coat of arms that could be placed on the seal of the court, it is understood that such is necessary and  that the city will be given as a coat of arms and seal a sword Azure on a Orange shield, pointing through a wreath of laurel of a brown-green color. (as beside. Act in the fort of Jacatra on the date overhead and was signed J.P. Coen, I. Dedel, F. de Carpentier, Martinus Pieter Dirksz, Pieter Barendsz. en Thys Cornelisz. Vleeschhouwer, Secretary).


Somewhat later the Fort of Jacatra was renamed Batavia.



An early drawing of the arms of Batavia.

 (On a map of Batavia by Gilles Venant (1629). (Atlas van Stolk)).

On the Great seal of the aldormen of Batavia the arms of Batavia are supported by one lion, sitting behind the shield.  Legend: SIGILLUM URBIS BATAVIAE. [2]









The Minor seal is smaller but has same arms and supporter. [3]


Coat of arms of Batavia, 1627

From: Map of Batavia, 1627.

Coll. Westfries Museum Hoorn, inv.nr. 02020


Arms: Orange, a sword upright Azure, hilt Or, pointing through a wreath of laurel Vert. And as a supporter a single lion sejant  Gules (Holland).

Coat of arms of Batavia, 1652

From: Waere Afbeeldinge wegens het Casteel ende stadt Batavia in 1652.

Coll. Westfries Museum Hoorn inv. nr. 15266

Arms: Gules, a sword upright Azure, hilt Or, pointing through a wreath of laurel Vert. And as a supporter a single lion Or, swinging a sword proper.


After the death of William II of Orange the tincture of the field was changed into red (Gules) the colour of the civil government of the Republic. At the same time a version  with two lions as supporters was introduced, the lion on the dexter with the bundle of arrows in his claw, and the one on the sinister with a sword. These were the symbols of the Union and of the armed forces of the Republic.

The achievement has to be read as „The Executive Committee of Batavia, at the grace of the States General of the Republic”. In fact the States General was the suzerain of the United East India Company and the city of Batavia was a settlement of the Company.

In 1651 a painting of the achievement was made by Jeronimus Becx de Jonge from Middelburg.


Painting with the achievement of the executive committee of Batavia.

by Jeronimus Becx de Jonge from Middelburg, 1651.

Detail, on the right is the achievement of the V.O.C.. Rijksmuseum Amsterdam, cat. of paintings n° 2988


Arms: Gules, a sword Azure, hilt Or, pointing through a wreath of laurel Vert .

Supporters.: D.: A lion guardant, in his sinister claw a bundle of seven arrows. S.: A lion guardant, in his dexter claw a sword.


The legend reads:


            Wapen van de Stadt Batavia gelegen opt

            Eylandt Groot Java int Coninckrijk van

            Jacatra by de Generale Nederlandsche

            Geoctroyeerde Oostindische Compagnie

            Verovert den 30 Maij Anno 1619.


(Arms of the City of Batavia on the Island of Greater Java in the Kingdom of Jacatra, conquered by the Chartered General Dutch East India Company on the 30th of May of the year 1619).


Not long after the two supporters were made identical, each with a sword and a bundle of arrows..


Achievement of Batavia

On a View of Batavia by Johannes Vingboons, 1665  [4]



Achievement of Batavia at the end of the 18th  century,

on the shield a ducal or countal crown.[5]



Achievement of Batavia after 1907.

Coll. K.I.T. Amsterdam.  TM n°: 0-134.  13,5 x 22,8 cm


At the beginning of the 20th century a new achievement for Batavia was officially adopted. It could be used by the city, the city-council and the president of the city-council of Batavia.


It was:

Arms.: Gules, a sword of steel per pale, hilt in base, the blade surrounded by a garland of laurel, tied with a ribbon Argent, all proper.

Crown: A mural crown of five towers.

Supporters: Two lions Or, langued and unguled Gules.

Motto: DISPEREERT NIET in golden lettering on a ribbon Azure. [6]


The motto dispereert niet (Do Not Despair) was the motto of  Jan Pieterszoon Coen (1587-1629), governor-general of the Dutch East-Indies (1619-1623 and 1627-1629). It is a quote from the end of a letter from 1618 to the “Seventeen Lords” of the United East-India Company: “Dispereert niet, ontsiet uwe vyanden niet, daer en is ter werelt niet dat ons can hinderen... daer can in Indiėn wat groots verricht worden!”. (Do not despair, do not spare your enemies, there is nothing in the world that can hamper us… something great can be achieved in the Indies!). The motto is also on the socle of the monument for Coen in his birthplace Hoorn. In relation with Batavia the motto appears for the fist time on the frontispiece of the “Naam­boekje van Nederlandsch Indiė voor 1779”.


The supporters are taken from the Dutch Royal achievement adopted by Royal decree of 10th of July 1907. No achievement of Batavia is known with the crowned supporters of the Dutch Royal achievement of 1815.



Achievement of Batavia adopted by decree of  22nd  of September 1930.

From a calendar of the Stoomvaart Maatschappij Nederland. Coll. K.I.T. Amsterdam


By decree of the city-council of Batavia the original tincture of the field of 1620 was restored:


Arms.: Orange, a sword of steel per pale, hilt in base, the blade surrounded by a garland of laurel, tied with a ribbon Argent, all proper.

Crown: A mural crown of five towers.

Supporters: Two lions Or, langued and unguled Gules.

Motto: DISPEREERT NIET in golden lettering on a ribbon Azure.[7]

Decree of 22nd  of September 1930


III. Struggle for Independece 1945-1950 &

Voorlopig Federaal District Batavia 1948-1950

Batavia Provisional Federal District


Soon after the Japanese invasion of the Netherlands Indies in 1942 Queen Wilhelmina made the proposal, in a speech held on 7 December 1942, of the establishment of a Commonwealth of the Netherlands. The Dutch Government in London made plans to restore Dutch sovereignty in the Indies after the war. In 1944 an Expeditionary Force was founded with the aim to restore order and authority in the colony after the defeat of the Japanese. An emblem for this Expeditionary force was adopted by Ministerial Disposal of 1 July 1944 and consisted of the sword and the garland of Batavia augmented with the initials of the force E.M., on a brown background. 

On 1 September 1946 a Division was formed of conscripts. Referring to the royal speech the divison was called 1st Division 7 December. The first soldiers of the division arrived in Batavia at the end of  1946. It was mainly encamped near Batavia. From 1949 until 1950 the troops returned to the Netherlands.

The emblem of the Expeditionary Force was abandoned by Army Order (Legerorder) 1947, N° 7. The arms of the 1st Division 7 December was adopted by Army Order 1946, N° 259. It consisted of the arms of Batavia of 1652 augmented with the initials E.M.. [8]



Arms of the Expeditionary Force




Arms of the 1st Division 7 December


Of the Provisional Federal District no special emblems are known.


IV. Kotapradja Djakarta Raja



Arms.: Vert, the monument for the Proclamation of the Republic proper (white) the pile surrounded by a garland of cotton and rice, tied with a ribbon in the national colors white and red. The pile standing on a slab with the map of Indonesia.

Crown: A mural crown of three towers.


Soon after independence the name of Batavia was changed into Djakarta.

A coat of arms for Djakarta was adopted in october 1951. It is inspired for a great deal by the ancient arms of Batavia in that the garland was maintained and that the upright sword was replaced by the, national monument, also standing upright. Later, many other Indonesian coats of arms were designed in which there is also a garland, always consisting of cotton and padi, and an upright symbol, for example a dagger or a palmtree.  The cotton and padi of the new garland in itself are inspired by the garland around the arms of Paku Buwono X of Surakarta (1893-1939) which also consisted of a branch of cotton and ears of rice.


* In the coat of arms the color green symbolizes the brotherhood of mankind, the monument symbolizes the Proclamation of the Republic, the cotton symbolizes clothing and the padi abundance.


* Green was frequently used by the states of the Federal Republic of Indonesia. It was one of the national colors for example of the Republic of East Indonesia, of West Sumatra and of  the State of Pasundan. For a long time green and yellow had been the colours of the House of Pontianak, its arms and flag being a crescent Vert on a field Or (yellow). In the Republic of Indonesia the combination green-yellow or green-white disappeared and was replaced by the new national colors red and white.

It may be supposed that the colour green for the federal states of Indonesia after the war, was choosen by the Dutch heraldist Dirk Rühl and sultan Abdul Hamid II (1913-†1978) of Pontianak who knew each other well.


V. Daerah Kusus Ibu Kota Jakarta


By decree of 30.VI.1962, ratified 26.VI.1963, the arms were changed again. They are now:


Arms: Azure, the National Monument proper, surrounded by a garland of rice and cotton. In base two waves Argent; and a chief Argent with the words JAYA RAYA (Victorious and Great), Gules.

By Decree of  30th of June 1962


š See illustration in the head of this essay









Kodam Jaya, oversees Jakarta, the capital city of Indonesia. It also oversees three regions outside Jakarta: Bekasi and Depok, actually in West Java province, and Tangerang which is in Banten province.



The arms of the regional police force (POLDA) Metro Jaya shows the charges of the arms of the special region on a green field.


Back to Main Page


© Hubert de Vries 2006

Updated 22.02.2007 / 2010.10.02 / 2011-03-04/ 2012-06-10

[1]  Chijs, J.A. van der: Nederlandsch-Indisch Plakkaatboek, 1602-1811. Batavia - ‘s Hage 1885 pp. 65. Also: Netscher, E. In: Tijdschrift Bataaf­sche Genealogie, 4, 1855, p. 284 from which is taken the part between brackets.

[2]  Oud Batavia. Gedenkboek uitgegeven door het Bataviaasch Genoot­schap van Kunsten en Wetenschappen naar aanleiding van het driehon­derdjarig bestaan der stad in 1919. 2 Dln. en Platenalbum. Batavia, 1923. N° G.3.

[3]  Oud Batavia, N° G 4

[4]  Also: Bataviase Nouvelles n°  10, 1744, Oud Batavia H 8.

[5]  Naamboekje van Nederlandsch Indiė 1779, frontispiece. Illustration from: Rhede van der Kloot, M.A. van:  De Goeverneurs-Generaal en Commissarissen Generaal van Nederlandsch Indiė 1610-1883. ‘s Gravenhage, 1891

[6]  In keel: een ontbloot Romeinsch zwaard van staal, met gevest van staal, paalsgewijs, de kling omhoog. Het zwaard omkransd door twee lauriertakken gekruist boven het gevest, te zamen gebonden met ter weerszijden wapperende zilveren linten. Het wapenschild zal mogen worden gedekt met de stedekroon. Aan bedoeld wapen kunnen als ver­sierselen worden toegevoegd: als schildhouders: dezelfde als vastge­steld voor het Nederlandsche rijkswapen (zonder kroon); het devies: "Dispereert niet" in Latijnsche letters in goud op een lint van azuur. Encyclopaedie van Nederlandsch Indiė. Dl. IV & VIII Den Haag, 1921.

[7]  Nederlandsche Heraldiek. Album II. N.V. Koffie Hag My. Nederlandsch Oost-Indiė n° 19 afb. 18.

[8]  Coenders, C.P. c.s. : The Sleevebadges of the Netherlands Army. Breda 1974. Pp. 11, 19.  For the original plaques: Het Vergeten Leger.

Flag Counter In cooperation with Heraldry of the World