Country : Belgium
The arms were granted on October 6, 1819, confirmed on May 6, 1839 and again on December 17, 1987.
The Estate of Mol, to which the village of Balen belonged, has had a complicated history with many different owners. The arms show a St. Andrew's cross, which is derived from the arms of the Roelants family, Lords of Mol, Balen and Dessel for some decades in the 17th century. The colours however, should be a golden shield with a black cross. The saint probably originally was the patron saint of Mol-Balen-Dessel, Saint Peter. Saint Andrew is the patron saint of the village of Balen. The blazon describes him as St. Andrew, but as the saint is holding a key, it most likely is St. Peter.
The colours are the Dutch national colours, as in 1813 the mayor applied without indicating the colours. The arms were thus granted in the national colours. When the arms were confirmed after the Belgian independence, the colours were not changed.
In 1987 the arms were changed. The proposal from the Flemish Heraldic Cuncil was to change both the colours of the shield and the supporter. The municipality wanted to continue the cross in the blue and golden colours, but the supporter was changed to St. Peter.
The arms in the Koffie Hag/Café Hag albums +/- 1930
The arms on a Roulertas Confiserie label
The arms on a police badge (source)
Literature: Anonymous : Van evers en heiligen - wapens en vlaggen van de gemeenten in de provincie Antwerpen. Antwerpen, 1998.
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