People may be wondering who the “Helvetia” in our name is and who, specifically, are her sons. Let’s take a look at the female personification of the Swiss motherland
We have been getting quite some feedback from curious shoppers and online followers as to where we got our name Helvetia and Sons. While our founder Seraina Peter embodies many of the sterling qualities of Helvetia and her people, she is not the woman in question.
Indeed, one could say that Helvetia is no ordinary woman and her story is one that also gives insight to the mind of Switzerland and the Swiss people.
Mother of a Nation
Some people who have asked us about Helvetia remember encountering it in French comic authors’ Goscinny and Uderzo’s Asterix series wherein the titular Gaul and a friend have an adventure in a country referred to as “Helvetia” – essentially the region we know today as Switzerland, but as it was known during the Roman Era.
Helvetia is to Switzerland what Marianne is to France and Lady Liberty is to the United States: the female personification of the country’s soul and spirit. She is depicted as a tall and stately woman clad in flowing robes, a shield in her left hand, a spear in her right, and her hair plaited into a crown encircling her head together with a laurel wreath. Today, Helvetia’s noble and graceful figure is etched into Swiss coins and postage stamps.
Switzerland was actually known as Helvetia between 55BC and 1848AD, when the country became a federal state and adapted the name by which it is known today.
Switzerland’s formal name – Confoederatio Helvetica (the Helvetian Confederacy) – is taken from the country’s ancient name and is also the reason why the URL suffix for websites created for Swiss companies is “.ch” rather than “.sw.”
Keeping this in mind, the “…and Sons” part of our brand name refers to the four parts that make up the Swiss population: German, French, Italian, and Romansch.
Under Mother Helvetia, these four parts of the country work together in harmony to build up a nation that is strong in both physical might and spirit, wise in both heart and mind, brave, and united in all its worthy goals.
Another reason we really like the suffix “…and Sons” is that many long-established and traditional retailers do have it in their names, too and it awakes memories browsing such stores in London, Hamburg (... und Söhne) or Milan (... e Figli).
That said, Helvetia and Sons – as a rising brand operating far from the Motherland – also embodies the nation’s virtues and ideals. We believe in delivering only the best possible goods and services to our customers. We carefully choose products made in our home country that best exemplify the Swiss attention to detail, quality and craftsmanship. Or in short: So Much More from Switzerland.