The Occitan cross — also cross of Occitania, cross of Languedoc, cross of Forcalquier and Toulouse cross,— is the symbol of Occitania. Occitania ( Occitan: Occitània) refers to the lands where Occitan is the traditional language in use though more recently viewed as a minority language It was first used as such, probably, in the coat of arms of the counts of Forcalquier in Provence, and then by the counts of Toulouse in the traditional territory of Languedoc and later spread to the other provinces of lo país, namely Provence, Guyenne, Gascony, Dauphiné, Auvergne and Limousin. A coat of arms or armorial bearings (often just arms for short in European tradition is a design belonging to a particular person (or group of people Forcalquier is a commune of the Alpes-de-Haute-Provence department in southeastern France. Provence ( Provençal Occitan: Provença in classical norm or Prouvènço in Mistralian norm is a region of southeastern France Toulouse ( pronounced in standard French, and in the local accent ( Occitan: Tolosa, pronounced) is a city in southwest Languedoc ( in French Lengadòc in Occitan) is a former Province of France, now continued in the modern-day ''régions'' of Languedoc-Roussillon Occitania ( Occitan: Occitània) refers to the lands where Occitan is the traditional language in use though more recently viewed as a minority language Provence ( Provençal Occitan: Provença in classical norm or Prouvènço in Mistralian norm is a region of southeastern France Aquitaine (Aquitània Akitania archaic Guyenne / Guienne (Occitan Guiana) is one of the 26 Regions of France, in the south-western part of Gascony (Gascogne gaskɔɲ Gascon Occitan: Gasconha, pronounced) is an area of southwest France that constituted a province of France The Dauphiné or Dauphiné Viennois is a former province in southeastern France, roughly corresponding to the present departments ' of the Auvergne ( Occitan: Auvèrnhe/Auvèrnha) was the name of an historically independent county in the center of France, as well as later a Province of Limousin ( Occitan: Lemosin) is a former Province of France around the city of Limoges in central France. A yellow Occitan cross on a blood-red background with the seven-armed golden star of the Félibrige makes up the flag of modern-day Occitania. The Félibrige (more aptly Felibritge, feliˈβridʒe in Occitan) is a literary and cultural association founded in the mid-19th century by Frédéric Mistral It can also be found in the emblems of Midi-Pyrenées, Languedoc-Roussillon and Hautes-Alpes, among many others, as well as in cemeteries and at country crossroads. Midi-Pyrénées ( Occitan: Miègjorn-Pirenèus or Mieidia-Pirenèus) is the largest region of Metropolitan France by area larger Languedoc-Roussillon ( Occitan: Lengadòc-Rosselhon; Catalan: Llenguadoc-Rosselló) is one of the 26 regions of France. Hautes-Alpes ( Occitan: Auts Aups) is a department in southeastern France named after the Alps mountain range
The Occitan cross is technically described as "mouthed and hollowed out, with keys (or paws) and golden spheres" (de golas a la crotz voidada, clechada (or patèa) e pometada d'aur). In La Cançon de la crosada, it goes by the name of Raymondine cross (crotz ramondenca, laisse 109). The Chanson de la Croisade Albigeoise ("Song of the Albigensian Crusade" in modern Occitan Cançon de la crosada (formerly Canso It's still the object of a dispute among experts as to whether its first appearance in Occitania was in Provence or Languedoc.
The Occitan cross probably first appears in the coat of arms of the counts of Forcalquier and then during the reign of Raymond V, count of Toulouse, as a particular description of his official seal dated from 1165  corroborates. Occitan ( IPA BrE: /ˈɒksɪtn/ AmE: /ˈɑksəˌtɑn/ known also as Lenga d'òc or Langue d'oc (native name occitan Occitan ( IPA BrE: /ˈɒksɪtn/ AmE: /ˈɑksəˌtɑn/ known also as Lenga d'òc or Langue d'oc (native name occitan Forcalquier is a commune of the Alpes-de-Haute-Provence department in southeastern France. Raymond V (1134&ndash1194 was count of Toulouse from 1148 until his death in 1194 It soon spreads across the whole south-western part of today's France and is even spotted in various towns up north throughout the XIIth Century. This article is about the country For a topic outline on this subject see List of basic France topics. Several interpretations have been proposed for the cross, often stressing the symbolic side of it and leaving aside the fact that "heraldry is not a science of symbols, but one of emblems" (M. Heraldry in its most general sense encompasses all matters relating to the duties and responsibilities of officers of arms. Pastoureau).
In 1950, Henri Rolland  suggests that the origin of the Occitan cross be traced back to the marquisate of Provence, north of the Durance, more precisely the town of Venasque . A marquess (ˈmɑrkwɪs or marquis (/mɑrˈkiː/ is a Nobleman of hereditary rank in various European monarchies and some of their colonies The Durance ( Occitan: Durença in classical norm or Durènço in Mistralian norm is a 324 km long River in south-eastern France, Venasque is a commune of the Vaucluse département, in France.
In 1966, in the L'Auta review, Roger Camboulives voices his idea that the Occitan cross derives from a sun cross and perhaps the Nestorian cross  found in China's Turkestan. China ( Wade-Giles ( Mandarin) Chung¹kuo² is a cultural region, an ancient Civilization, and depending on perspective a National Turkestan (literally meaning "Land of the Turks" is a region in Central Asia, which today is largely inhabited by Turkic peoples. It would have arrived in Toulouse via northern Italy and Provence, probably sometime in the Xth Century. Italy (Italia officially the Italian Republic, (Repubblica Italiana is located on the Italian Peninsula in Southern Europe, and on the two largest Provence ( Provençal Occitan: Provença in classical norm or Prouvènço in Mistralian norm is a region of southeastern France In 1980, Camboulives again emphasizes the role played by the Wisigoths in the presence of small spheres at the end of the arms of the cross: they could represent the twelve houses of the zodiac . The Visigoths (Visigothi, Wisigothi, Vesi, Visi, Wesi, or Wisi were one of two main branches of the Goths, an East Zodiac denotes an annual cycle of twelve stations along the Ecliptic, the apparent path of the sun across the heavens through the Constellations that divide the ecliptic This hypothesis would definitely locate the birth of the Occitan cross in or around Toulouse.
In 1986, Jean-Yves Royer (in Le Pays de Forcalquier) claims that the cross was originally from Provence but admits that Henri Rolland's theory was flawed and built around wrong dates. Occitan ( IPA BrE: /ˈɒksɪtn/ AmE: /ˈɑksəˌtɑn/ known also as Lenga d'òc or Langue d'oc (native name occitan Béziers ( Besièrs in Occitan, and Besiers in Catalan) is a town in Languedoc, in the southwest of France. Events 45 BC - In his last victory Julius Caesar defeats the Pompeian forces of Titus Labienus and Pompey the Younger Year 2007 ( MMVII) was a Common year starting on Monday of the Gregorian calendar in the 21st century. Royer concludes that Rolland possibly mistook the Occitan cross with that of Forcalquier . Forcalquier is a commune of the Alpes-de-Haute-Provence department in southeastern France. He draws evidence most notably from two crosses carved in the lid of a sarcophagus found in the small Alpes-de-Haute-Provence commune of Ganagobie. A sarcophagus is a Funeral receptacle for a Corpse, most commonly carved or cut from stone Alpes-de-Haute-Provence ( Occitan: Aups d'Auta Provença) is a French department in the south of France, it was formerly part of the province The commune is the lowest level of administrative division in the French Republic.
In the december 1994 edition of the Archistra magazine, Pierre Saliès once again maintains that the cross is from Toulouse and is the fruit of successive local evolutions, possibly from the Jerusalem cross . Jerusalem (יְרוּשָׁלַיִם, he-Latn Yerushaláyim; Arabic: ar القُدس, ar-Latn al-Quds) is the
Two years after, in L'Auta (#612), Jean Rocacher confirms that the Occitan cross "is first the own emblem of the old county of Venasque, later torn between the houses of Toulouse and Forcalquier. Year 1996 ( MCMXCVI) was a Leap year starting on Monday (link will display full 1996 Gregorian calendar) "
In 2000, Laurent Macé (in Les Comtes de Toulouse et leur entourage) claims that the Occitan cross became the counts' emblem after Raymond IV took part in the First Crusade. Raymond IV of Toulouse sometimes called Raymond of St Gilles (c The First Crusade was launched in 1095 by Pope Urban II with the dual goals of conquering the sacred city of Jerusalem and the Holy Land and freeing It would originate from Constantinople . Constantinople (Κωνσταντινούπολις Konstantinoúpolis, or gr ἡ Πόλις hē Polis, Latin: la CONSTANTINOPOLIS Macé indicates that its pattern was first found in the Byzantine area and spread across Western Europe through Italy and Provence. This article is about the city See also Byzantine Empire. Byzantium ( Greek: Βυζάντιον Latin: la BYZANTIVM Western Europe at its most general meaning means 'all the countries in the West of Europe ' The crosses of Venasque and Forcalquier would thus share the same origin, though one wasn't inspired by the other.
Later in the same year, Bertran de la Farge (in La Croix occitane) locates the original Occitan cross somewhere in the marquisate of Provence, probably Venasque. He argues it could be a mixture of the Constantinople cross and the Coptic cross , which was brought to Provence by monks and maybe also through Saint Maurice. The original Coptic Cross has its origin in the Coptic ankh symbol and was adopted by early Christian Gnostics such as the well known Valentinus Saint Maurice (also Moritz, Morris, or Mauritius) was the leader of the legendary Roman Theban Legion in the 3rd century and one of the
As for now, there is no undeniable evidence as to which side is right.
The Occitan cross can be found on a number of flags, coats of arms, emblems and logos. Occitania ( Occitan: Occitània) refers to the lands where Occitan is the traditional language in use though more recently viewed as a minority language Here follows a non-exhaustive list of occurrences: