The Naga City Official Seal
The Official Seal of the City of Naga has evolved through time. There have been various alterations in our official seal.
We believe though that our seal, as the city’s symbol of identity, history and culture, should remain unsullied and true to its original design as created by Dr. Domingo Abella and approved by the Philippine Heraldry Committee. Thus, the Sangguniang Panlungsod of Naga went through great lengths to research the original layout of our seal and, hence forward, use such in all official transactions of the city.
From our extensive study, though the Philippine Heraldry Committee made some revisions in the form and shape of our city’s seal, no armorial device was changed or eliminated. With this, as described in one of the history books on Naga City, our seal should be illustrated following these descriptions:
“By impalement, the two original settlements which now constitute the City of Naga [are] symbolized at the base of the field. The native settlement of Naga discovered by Captain Juan de Salcedo on the banks of a tributary to the Bicol River in 1573 takes precedence on the dexter side. It is represented by a Narra or Naga three growing luxuriantly on the vast expanse of rice paddies. The dexter side’s blue background together with the green of the Narra tree represents the flourishing Oriental culture and paganism of the natives when Westerners first arrived. The sinister side denotes the Spanish City of Caceres (later Nueva Caceres) founded by Captain Pedro de Chaves in 1575 not far from the native settlement of Naga by order of Governor Sande (for whose birthplace the city was named). This was the seat, not only of military, and later, of civil government (as shown by the Castle) but also of religious authority (the Cross on top of the Castle) over the whole of South Luzon. The red of the sinister background symbolizes the blood shed by Spaniards and natives alike in the numerous clashes between the colonizers and their unwieldy and unwilling subjects, from the campaigns of Captain Chaves to the revolt of Corporal Elias Angeles, in the course of three centuries. At the same time, the red of the background and the gold color of the Castle stand for the Gold and Red of monarchic Spain. In fess, the Isarog mountain, the Bicol River meandering from the mountain down to San Miguel Bay, and the rice fields bathed by the river along its course, all embrace both entities represented on the dexter and sinister sides — a geographical reality.
The upper of “chief” portion of the shield shows an equilateral triangle whose apex is at the “honor” point, representing the most common vehicle used by the Katipunan for the society’s symbols and insignias.Borne upon the triangle is the American eagle symbolizing Uncle Sam’s rule after the bloody events of the revolution. A scroll borne by the eagle carries the year 1900, when the first American troops established themselves locally, and the year 1946 when independence for the whole country was proclaimed.
The white color of the triangular field represents the enlightened rule of America under whose aegis the community prepared itself for its place of honor among the chartered cities of the country.On top of all the symbols and armorial devices, occupying the uppermost center of the “chief” portion, is a scroll bearing the year 1948 – the culmination, as it were, of the fused communities’ (Naga and Nueva Caceres) recorded history of 375 years: the year of its proclamation as the Chartered City of Naga. The Official Seal also contains the significant years of 1575, 1900 and 1946 on its escutcheon."
The Mace of the Sangguniang Panlungsod is a carved 36-inch wooden staff, topped by a 10-inch diameter depiction of the city’s official seal and adorned by six Narra leaves and a Narra flower on both sides. It is being carried by a designated personnel of the Sangguniang Panlungsod before the entrance of the City Vice Mayor to the Session Hall and, during sessions, is being displayed at the Presiding Officer’s rostrum. As the symbol of the authority of the Sanggunian, the city council cannot transact business or convene in a session without the presence of the mace.
It is also used as a symbol of peaceful and orderly discussions in the chamber. When the occasion calls for it, or when there is disorder in a session, the Mace shall be lifted from its pedestal and be presented before an unruly member to quell his/her boisterous behavior and, consequently, restore order in the deliberations of the August body.
An 11-inch wooden mallet, the gavel is being used by the Vice Mayor as a symbol of authority and of right to act officially as presiding officer of the Sangguniang Panlungsod. The gavel is accompanied by a sounding block, made also of wood, to enhance the quality of its sound whenever it is struck during a regular session.
Striking a gavel symbolizes either commanding of attention or punctuating of rulings and proclamations. A gavel is also customarily struck to indicate the opening of a session, to signify the acceptance and enactment of a motion or order, and to adjourn a session. The term gavel-to-gavel connotes the whole length of a deliberation or political convention.