They are international maritime signal flags. The front tier reads, from top to bottom: P-A-R-I-S. In between those letters, the next tier back (of penants) reads: 1-9-3-7. Beyond, it's more difficult, the swallow-tail shapes should be distinctive of signal flags, rather than national ones, but I do not find their patterns in memory or any reference guide that I can find. But the bottom two look like Thailand and Greece, specifically.
That’s it! As a child, I wanted to become a sailor, so I carefully read, among other things, the signal flags, so I was surprised to see them on the cover of a guide to a city deep inland. I wonder whether its users understood the meaning of the composition. As to the background flags, the upper ones might be perhaps of Switzerland and of a Scandinavian country.
Paris may be a city far inland, but its coat of arms shows a ship, reflecting the city's original situation on an island. So maritime symbols do make sense in a way...
The origin of the city arms of Paris is different. The motto under the ship is "fluctuat nec mergitur". This phrase is translated as "Elle flotte sans être submergée" or in English "She is tossed by the waves but does not sink". Both motto and city arms have their origins in the river Seine boatsman's corporation; this powerful hanse ruled the city's trade and commerce as early as the Roman era.Although this corporation through the centuries became an entity resembling more a municipal government than a trade organization, they maintained their original arms and motto, and it is for this that the Mairie de Paris bears them still today. It was made official on November 24th, 1853 by the Baron Haussmann.
the upper ones is the flag from Switzerland.
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through the back door!