Crișana (Körösvidék in Hungarian) is a historical region in Europe shared by Romania and Hungary. Its name is derived from the Criș (Körös) River and its three branches: Crișul Negru, Crișul Alb and Crișul Repede. The Romania-Hungary border cuts Crișana in two equal halves, one in each country. Crișana's natural boundaries are the Tisza River in the west, the Someș River in the north, the Apuseni Mountains in the east and the Mureș River in the south.
The coat of arms of Crișana incorporates elements from its medieval history. The Turul bird is an ancient symbol of the Hungarians who conquered the region at the turn of the 9th century. According to their old legends, the Turul bird was the guardian spirit of Álmos, the first chieftain of the Magyar confederation, and by extension a totem of all Magyar tribes. It was Álmos who launched the Hungarian conquest of the Carpathian Basin and his son and successor Árpád who completed it and subjugated Crișana.
The tower represents the fortress of Biharia which was the seat of Menumorut, the semi-legendary ruler of Crișana at the time of the Hungarians' arrival. Menumorut is only mentioned in one primary source, so there are some doubts regarding his historicity. If Menumorut existed, then he was of either Turkic, Slavic or Romanian extraction. Árpád asked Menumorut to surrender his lands to him, but the lord of Crișana refused and the Hungarians invaded his realm.
After several battles and sieges, Menumorut was ultimately defeated. He surrendered once his fortress at Biharia was seized by the invaders and accepted Árpád's suzerainty. Menumorut was forced to marry his daughter to Zoltán, Árpád's son, and in return he was allowed to retain Biharia for the rest of his life.
The blue field probably symbolizes the waters of the Criș River. #coatofarms #vexilology #heraldry #heraldic #symbols #crest #darksideofhistory #medieval