Guild flags, etching from 1815. Over the centuries, the guilds had developed into a pillar of the existing economic order. As this etching makes clear, they had their own elaborate system of signs and insignia. In the period leading up the Revolution of 1848–49, the power of the guilds became increasingly subject to criticism as advocates of occupational freedom challenged their validity.

The Flags of the Guilds (1815)

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Source: bpk-Bildagentur, image number 00004499. For rights inquiries, please contact Art Resource at requests@artres.com (North America) or bpk-Bildagentur at kontakt@bpk-bildagentur.de (for all other countries).

© bpk / Kunstbibliothek, SMB / Knud Petersen