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Flags of the World

(Flags of Nations)

National Flags And Their Meanings

Enjoy a range of free flag pictures from different countries around the globe.
There are over 200 countries in the world, including large ones, small ones, old ones, new ones,
disputed ones and some controlled by other countries or kingdoms (politics is complicated!).
Scroll down and explore a wide range of flags right here, we think you'll find the one you're looking for.

National Flags And Their Meanings:

A | B | C | D | E | F | G | H | I | J | K | L | M | N | O | P | Q | R | S | T | U | V | Y | Z


Albania

Albania Flag Meaning: The eagle is taken from an Albanian folk tale. The eagle faithfully watches over and guides the king or the son of the eagle.

Albania Flag History: The current version of the Albania flag was adopted on April 7th 1992. The coat of arms was adopted May 22nd, 1993. Some modern versions of the Albania flag have a helmet or star above the eagle. A version of the Albanian flag with a red star and a yellow border dates back to the Communist takeover in 1946 and has recently been removed. The eagle dates back to George Castriota, an Albanian Christian who became a Turkish general in the 15th century under the name of Iskander Bey, or Skanderberg. Castriota used the double-headed eagle on his seals and this has led it to being on the modern flag. Albania declared independence from the Ottoman Empire in 1912. All versions of the Albanian flag since then have featured an eagle, even during the Italian occupation of World War II, and its communist regime after the war. Albania became a republic again in 1992.

Albania Flag Facts: The nickname of the Albania flag is 'flamur e Skenderbeut' (Skanderbeg's flag).

Algeria

Algeria Flag Meaning: The green color represents Islam and the white represents purity.

Algeria Flag History: The current version of the Algerian flag was adopted on July 3rd, 1962 after driving the French out in the Algerian War of Independence. The Algeria coat of arms was adopted November 1st 1976.

Algeria Flag Facts: The flag is rumored to be a variation of the flag of liberation forces of military leader Abd el-Kader in 1837-1847, but there is no documentation of that. The crescent on the Algerian flag has become an Islamic symbol, which originated on the Flag of Turkey.

Andorra

Andorra Flag History: The national flag of Andorra was adopted in 1866. Previous to 1866 the flag consisted of a yellow left half and a red right half. The blue color bar was added and this addition meant both France and Spain were represented with two colors in Andorra's flag (red and blue for France; and red and yellow for Spain). The Principality of Andorra is a small landlocked principality in southwestern Europe, located between France and Spain.

Andorra Flag History: The national flag of Andorra was adopted in 1866. Previous to 1866 the flag consisted of a yellow left half and a red right half. The blue color bar was added and this addition meant both France and Spain were represented with two colors in Andorra's flag (red and blue for France; and red and yellow for Spain). The Principality of Andorra is a small landlocked principality in southwestern Europe, located between France and Spain.

Andorra Flag Facts: There are also versions of the Andorra flag without the coat of arms. Various other versions of the Andorra flag have shown up throughout history, such as one in a 1952 Italian dictionary which showed the Andorra flag as having a crown, instead of a coat of arms, and with horizontal stripes instead of vertical.

Angola

Angola Flag Meaning: The red in the flag represents the blood shed by Angolans during oppression, the national liberation struggle and the defense of the country. The black represents the Continent of Africa. The emblem's cogwheel represents the laborers, and industrial production, and the machete represents peasants, agricultural production and the country's armed struggle. The star symbolizes international solidarity and progress while the color yellow represents the wealth of Angola.

Angola Flag History: The current Angola flag was adopted on November 11th 1975 after Angola became independent from Portugal. Angola was discovered in 1483 by a Portuguese mariner and was one of the last African colonies to gain independence. There was a flag proposed for Portuguese Angola during 1967 but it never materialized.

Angola Flag Facts: The emblem on the Angola flag is similar to the hammer and sickle emblem on the flag of the former Soviet Union, which is a symbol of Communism. In 2003, a new flag was proposed for Angola, but it hasn't yet been ratified or formally adopted. The proposed Angola flag is extremely different in design and symbolism.

Antartica

Antigua-And-Barbuda

Antigua Flag and Barbuda Flag Meaning: In the Antigua and Barbuda flag the star/sun combination represents the dawning of a new era. The red represents the energy of the people and the blue symbolizes hope. The African ancestry of the people is represented by the black. The sun, sand and sea are represented by the flag's combination of yellow blue and white.

Antigua Flag and Barbuda Flag History: The current flag was adopted on February 27, 1967 after it became a self governing country. Antigua and Barbuda gained independence from Britain in 1981. Antigua and Barbuda had been a British colony since 1632.

Antigua Flag and Barbuda Flag Facts: The current flag was designed by a high school art teacher in Antigua and Barbuda.

Argentina

Argentine Flag Meaning: There are conflicting views on the meaning of the Argentine flag. One theory states that the blue represents the Rio de la Plata, (River of Silver) which is the widest river in the world and that the white represents the metal silver, as the word Argentina originates from the Latin word 'Argentum' which means silver. Early conquerors thought there were large quantities of silver hidden in Argentine's river's banks. Another theory of the Argentine flag colors state that they represent the Bourbon Dynasty of Spain, as Spain colonized Argentina in 1516. Argentina received its independence from the Spanish 300 years later in 1816.

Argentine Flag History: An Argentine flag without the sun has existed since 1816. The first time the sun showed up on an Argentine flag was in 1818. The current Argentine flag was adopted on Feb. 25, 1818. The sun bearing flag used to be restricted to military and government agencies. Later on citizens of Argentina were given permission to use this Argentine flag as long as they handled it with respect and honor.

Argentine Flag Facts: Argentines call the blue color of their national flag 'celeste', which is the color of the day sky seen from normal angles of sight. When ceremonially carried, the Argentine flag and flag bearers are subject to certain particular and elaborate practices set by law and flags are always carried with at least two escorts. Argentine's flag bearers usually have to go through a screening process and in schools there is strong competition by students to achieve the honor. Often students with the best grades are chosen to be Argentine's flag carriers.

Armenia

Armenian Flag Meaning: There are conflicting views on the meaning of the Armenian flag's colors. The most recognized meaning of the Armenian flag is that the red symbolizes the blood spilt by Armenian soldiers in defense of their country; the orange symbolizes the fertile soil and the farmers that work on it; and the blue represents the sky. Another theory states that the colors mean: red - the sun's energy; blue - the clear sky; and orange - the wheat at harvest.

Armenian Flag History: Armenia's official flag was created after the First World War between 1918 and 1921, after Armenia gained independence and was readopted on Aug. 24th 1990, just before gaining independence from the Soviet Union in 1991. When Armenia was controlled by the Soviet Union it went through a few flag changes and its flags had Soviet emblems on them.

Armenian Flag Facts: The Armenian flag is said to be karmir, kappoyt, narndjagooyn, an eastern Armenian pronunciation, which translates exactly into red, blue, and orange.

Australia

Australian Flag Meaning: The Union Jack depicts the first colonization of Australia by Europe was by the British, as Australia was a British penal colony. The seven pointed Star of Federation represents each of Australia's six states, one additional point represents Australia's territories. The Southern Cross is a constellation of stars that can be seen from all of Australia's states and territories.

Australian Flag History: The Australian national flag was first flown in 1901 after Australia had become a nation. Australia's current flag was last changed on May 22, 1909. Throughout Australia's first 50 years the flag had two versions, the first having the same design but with a red background. On Apr. 14, 1954 the "Blue Ensign" flag finally became Australia's official flag. The blue based Australian flag was adopted over the red design due to the fact that red represented communism. 

Australian Flag Facts: Australia's national flag is one of only two in the world that has a seven pointed star on it. The only other is the flag of Jordan. There has been huge debate in Australia over changing the flag, especially when it comes to removing the Union Jack. However, nothing has come of it yet. In 1998 legislation was passed that stated that the Australian flag can only be changed if the public approves. A competition to design Australia's flag was held in the late 1800's and prize money was awarded to the winner. There were 32,823 entries, and six of them were remarkably similar. The national flag was designed based on those entries and the six contestants split the prize money of 150 pounds. The inclusion of the Union Jack on the flag was mandatory.

Austria

Austrian Flag Meaning: Legend has it that Duke Leopold V. of Austria (1157-1194) was involved in a battle during the Crusades, and after the fight his white battledress was soaked in blood. When he removed his belt, though, the cloth underneath was still white. That very sight is said to have inspired the red, white and red stripes on the Austrian flag.

Austrian Flag History: The Austrian flag originated when Duke Friedrich II (1210-1246) wanted Austria to become more independent of the Roman Empire so he and adopted the red-white-red flag in 1230. The empire of Austria was founded in 1806. In 1938 it became a province of Nazi Germany. The allies occupied Austria after the Second World War until it became fully independent in 1955, on the condition that it remained neutral. The current version of the Austrian flag was adopted on April 27, 1984. 

Austrian Flag Facts: The Austrian and Danish flags are believed to be among the oldest national flag designs in the world. The Austrian flag wasn't used during Austria's unification with Nazi Germany in 1938 until it gained independence in 1945.

Azerbaijan

 


Bahamas

Bahamian Flag Meaning: The yellow stripe in the middle of the Bahamian flag represents the sandy beaches of the 700 Bahamian islands, and the aqua blue stripes symbolize the ocean waters that surround it. The black triangle stands for unity of the Bahamian nation and the people's determination to develop the land and the sea.

Bahamian Flag History: The present day Bahamian flag was adopted on Jul. 10, 1973. Previous versions of the Bahamian flag were designed with the British Union Jack depicted, as the Bahamas was named a British colony in 1783. In 1973 The Bahamas received its independence from Britain but remained a member of the Commonwealth of Nations.

Bahamian Flag Facts: The Bahamian flag's original design had two yellow stripes surrounding a blue stripe. However, this Bahamian flag was rejected and the color patterns were reversed.

Bahrein

Bahranian Flag Meaning: The triangles on the white serrated stripe represent the five pillars of Islam. The color red is supposed to represent the Kharijite sect of Islam. Bahrain's older flags used to be entirely red, but a white stripe was added in the 19th Century to indicate truces Bahrain had made with neighboring countries. The serrated triangles were added to the white strips to distinguish the Bahranian flag from the flags of its neighboring countries.

Bahranian Flag History: The present day Bahranian flag was adopted on Feb. 14, 2002 after the Emir of Bahrain declared his country a Kingdom and himself a King. The British had withdrawn from Bahrain in 1971 making it an independent emirate.

Bahranian Flag Facts: There are many laws concerning the flag of Bahrain, one which states that the flag not be used on vehicles, other than for official government use. The Bahranian flag may not be used for commercial use. If the Bahranian flag is used for any reason either than what the law stipulates, the person breaking the law faces a maximum of one month jail time as well as a fine.

Bangladesh

Bangladeshi Flag Meaning: The green base color of the Bangladesh flag symbolizes the greenery of Bangladesh with its vitality and youthfulness. The red circle represents the rising sun and the blood as well as the sacrifices that the Bangladesh people have made in order to gain independence.

Bangladeshi Flag History: The present day Bangladesh flag was adopted on Jan 17, 1972, after gaining independence from Pakistan in 1971.

Bangladeshi Flag Facts: Many western writers have misinterpreted the Bangladesh flag's green base as symbolizing the color of Islam, which is essentially incorrect.

Barbados

Barbados Flag Meaning: The left blue stripe represents the sky and the yellow/gold stripe symbolizes the sand. The right blue stripe represents the sea. The trident in the middle of the Barbados flag represents Barbados independence from the British, with each point of the trident representing the three principles of democracy which are government of, for and by the Barbados people.

Barbados Flag History: The present day Barbados flag was adopted on Nov. 30, 1966, after Barbados received its independence from the British, who had first settled on the island in 1627.

Barbados Flag Facts: The Barbados flag was designed by an art teacher and was chosen in a nation wide contest. The name Barbados comes from the Portuguese name 'Os Barbados' which means bearded one, because of the bearded fig trees that used to cover the island. There are specific rules in Barbados concerning the national flag. One of the rules states that the flag should not be flown after 6 pm, except inside a building.

Belarus

Belarusian Flag Meaning: The green stripe symbolizes the future. Green is the color of hope, spring and revival and the color of Belarus' lands forests and fields. The red represents Belarus' past and the blood of the country's defenders. The Belarusian flag's decorative pattern symbolizes Belarus' rich cultural heritage, its spiritual continuity, and the unity of its people.

Belarusian Flag History: The present day Belarusian flag was adopted on June 7, 1995. This flag is very similar to the flag used when Belarus was a part of the Soviet Union, although it doesn't have the sickle and hammer emblem. Belarus was recognized as an independent country from the Soviet Union in 1991. There was a proposal for a Belarusian flag in 1993 but it was rejected by the public. From 1991 to 1995 Belarus' flag was a white, red, white horizontal stripe design.

Belarusian Flag Facts: Just over 75 per cent of the people who voted in a referendum approved of the Belarusian flag.

Belgium

Belgian Flag Meaning: The colors of the Belgian flag are based on the coat of arms of the province of Brabant. The vertical stripe design was based on the design of France's flag.

Belgian Flag History: The present day Belgian flag was adopted on Jan. 23, 1831 after Belgium gained independence from the Netherlands in 1830. During a revolution in 1789 the Belgian flag appeared with the same colors, but was designed with the stripes running horizontal.

Belgian Flag Facts: If anybody shows public disrespect for the Belgian flag, by stepping on it, tearing it or burning it etc., they could be imprisoned for a period ranging from eight days up to one year - plus a fine. The official proportions of the Belgian flag are 13:15, referring to the relationship of the width (height) to length. This makes the official Belgian flag virtually square in shape.

Belize

Belize Flag Meaning: On the white circle is an inner green circle consisting of 50 olive leaves. The 50 leaves represent the year 1950, which was when Belize, which was formerly known as British Honduras, began its quest for independence from Britain. The country was renamed Belize in June of 1973. When independence was realized, the two red stripes were added to the country's previous flag. The Belize flag represents the unity of the nation's people.

Belize Flag History: The present day Belize flag was adopted on September 21, 1981, after Belize gained independence from Britain. The previous Belize flag, without the red stripes, was adopted in 1950. Belize has been a self governing country since 1964.

Belize Flag Facts: The motto on the Belize flag "Sub umbra floreo", means "I flourish in the shadow" (referring to the dependence from the UK), wasn't changed on the Belize flag in 1981 even after independence was achieved.

Benin

Benin Flag Meaning: The colors of the Benin flag are explained in the Benin's national anthem as such - the green represents hope and revival; the red symbolizes the courage of ancestors; and the yellow represents the country's wealth. The colors are traditional Pan-African colors.

Benin Flag History: The Benin flag was originally adopted Nov. 16 1959, and then abandoned in 1975 and reintroduced on Aug.1 1990, upon the removal of the Marxist regime. The country was formerly called the Republic of Dahomey and gained independence in 1960. It was named Benin in 1975.

Benin Flag Facts: The national Benin flag used from 1975-1990 was never officially adopted, meaning there was no law regarding it.

Bermuda

Bermudan Flag Meaning: The British Union Jack appears in the Bermudan flag because Bermuda is an island territory of Britain.

Bermudan Flag History: The Bermudan flag was adopted on Oct. 4, 1910. The present Bermudan flag was officially approved in October 1967.

Bermudan Flag Facts: There are some Bermudan flags in existence with a motto underneath the coat of arms, but the official version has no motto.

Bhutan

Bhutan Flag Meaning: The dragon on the Bhutan flag is white to symbolize purity. The dragon is holding jewels in its claws and these represent wealth. The snarling mouth of the dragon represents the strength of the people protecting the country. The colors of the Bhutan flag represent spiritual and temporal power within the country. The orange represents the Drukpas monasteries and Buddhist religion, and the orange/ yellow symbolizes the secular authority of the dynasty.

Benin Flag History: The Benin flag was originally adopted Nov. 16 1959, and then abandoned in 1975 and reintroduced on Aug.1 1990, upon the removal of the Marxist regime. The country was formerly called the Republic of Dahomey and gained independence in 1960. It was named Benin in 1975.

Benin Flag Facts: The national Benin flag used from 1975-1990 was never officially adopted, meaning there was no law regarding it.

Bolivia

Bolivian Flag Meaning: The red on the Bolivian flag represents the bravery of the Bolivian soldier. The green symbolizes the fertility of the land and the yellow represents the country's mineral resources.

Bolivian Flag History: The Bolivian flag was adopted on Oct. 31, 1851. Different variations of this flag were used in Bolivia since it gained independence from Spain on August 6, 1825, up until 1851.

Bolivian Flag Facts: The state flag of Bolivia is similar to the national flag, but it also has the Bolivian coat of arms placed in the middle of the flag. The flags of Bolivia and Ghana are identical, other than the fact there is a black star in the centre of Ghana's flag.

Bosnia-And-Herzegovina

Bosnia and Herzegovina Flag Meaning: The three points of the triangle stand for the three nation theory of Bosnia, representing the people who make up the nation. These are the Croats, Bosniaks and Serbs. The white stars represent Europe and they are meant to be infinite in number.

Bosnia and Herzegovina Flag History: The current Bosnian flag was adopted on Feb. 4, 1998. The country received its independence on Apr. 5, 1992. It was formerly one of six federal units constituting Yugoslavia. This Bosnian flag replaces one that was used from 1992 to 1998.

Bosnia and Herzegovina Flag Facts: Originally the Bosnian flag was to make use of the United Nations flag's blue color, but this was changed to a darker blue to correspond with the flag of the European Union.

Botswana

Republic of Botswana Flag Meaning: The colors on the Botswana flag are the same as the colors of the country's coat of arms. The light blue represents water (the motto on the Botswana national arms is PULA, meaning "let there be rain"). The black and white stripes symbolize the racial harmony of the country's people, as well as the pluralist nature of the society. The stripes are inspired by the zebra, the national animal of Botswana.

Republic of Botswana Flag History: The flag of Botswana was adopted on Sept. 30, 1966 right after Botswana received its independence from Britain.

Republic of Botswana Flag Facts: There is a law in Botswana requires that you have permission from the government before you fly the Botswana flag.

Brazil

Brazilian Flag Meaning: The colors green and yellow represent the Royal Houses of Bragança (Emperor Pedro I) and Habsburg (Empress Leopoldina). The stars on the blue circle represent the sky over Rio de Janeiro on the night of November 15, 1889, which is the day the Republic of Brazil was declared. Each of the 27 stars represents a different Brazilian state and the Federal District. The number of stars changes anytime a new state is created. When the Brazilian Republic was founded there were 21 stars. The star representing the Federal District is 'Sigma Octantis', and its position near the south celestial pole, makes it visible across most of Brazil all year round.

Brazilian Flag History: The current Brazilian flag was adopted on May 11, 1992. There was a temporary Brazilian flag, which was used from November 15 to 19, 1889, that was similar to in design, and was inspired by the flag of the United States. Brazil declared independence from Portugal on September 7, 1822.

Brazilian Flag Facts: Many people believed that the Brazilian flag's colors represented Brazil's natural richness. The green would represent the forests of the Amazon and the Atlantic Jungle; while the yellow rhombus represented the country's gold reserves, as Brazil was once home to the largest gold mines in world. Between the years 1500 and 1900 more gold was found in Brazil than had previously existed in the whole world.

Brunei

Brunei Flag Meaning: The coat of arms on the Brunei flag is a crescent (symbol of Islam) joined with a parasol (symbol of monarchy), with two gloves on both sides. Below the crescent is a ribbon. The crescent and ribbon have Arabic inscriptions which translate to "State of Brunei, Abode of peace" and "There is no deity but God, Muhammad is the messenger of God".

Brunei Flag History: The flag of Brunei was adopted on September 29, 1959 when the country was a British protectorate. The Brunei flag was kept after the country gained full independence on January 1, 1984.

Brunei Flag Facts: A similar Brunei flag without the coat of arms was used in Brunei in 1906.

Bulgaria

Bulgarian Flag Meaning: The white and red colors of the Bulgarian flag originate from the flag of Russia used during the Russo-Turkish War of 1878. The green stripe replaced a blue stripe because Bulgaria was developed as an agricultural country after its independence from the Ottoman Empire in 1878.

Bulgarian Flag History: The Bulgarian flag was adopted on April 16, 1879. Green, white and red colors were used in flags by Bulgarian Legia, a revolutionary organization founded in Serbia in 1861 to1862. The first white-green-red striped flag was made in 1877.

Bulgarian Flag Facts: The former Bulgarian coat of arms, formerly on the left side of the white stripe, was removed after 1989.

Burkina-faso

Burkina Faso Flag Meaning: The Burkina Faso flag depicts the pan-African colors, which reflect a break with the country's colonial past and its unity with other African ex-colonies. The red also symbolizes the revolution; while the green represents the country's abundance of natural riches. Finally, the yellow star represents the guiding light of the revolution.

Burkina Faso Flag History: The Burkina Faso flag was adopted on August 4, 1984. In August 1984 there was a coup, and the country's name was changed from Upper Volta to Burkina Faso and the new to Burkina Faso flag was adopted. Burkina Faso roughly translates into The land of honorable men.

Burkina Faso Flag Facts: The flag of Upper Volta consisted of black, white and red horizontal stripes which symbolized the Black Volta, White Volta and Red Volta Rivers.

Burma

Burundi

Burundi Flag Meaning: The three stars in the middle of the Burundi flag officially refer to the words in the national motto "Unité, Travail, Progrès" (French for "Unity, Work, Progress"). The stars also represent the three ethnic groups who live in Burundi - the Hutu, Tutsi and the Twa. The red in the Burundi flag stands for the country's independence struggle. The green represents hope and the white stands for peace.

Burundi Flag History: The Burundi flag was adopted on June 28, 1967. Burundi gained independence from Belgium on July 1, 1962.

Burundi Flag Facts: According to some references, the civilians of Burundi only have the right to use this flag on holidays. Otherwise the Burundi flag is used as a state flag and military flag on land. The President of the Republic of Burundi has the right to use the flag on buildings.

 


Cambodia

Cambodian Flag Meaning: The blue color symbolizes the country's royalty. The red represents the nation and the white represents the religion, beginning with Brahmanism, and the current major religion - Buddhism. The emblem of the temple represents the structure of the universe.

Cambodian Flag History: The Cambodian flag was adopted on June 30, 1993. It was originally adopted on October 29, 1948 and remained until October 1970. The Cambodian flag once again resurfaced in 1993 with the reestablishment of the Cambodian monarchy. Cambodia declared independence from France on November 9, 1953.

Cambodian Flag Facts: The first Cambodian flag came into existence around 1863. It was quite similar to the Cambodian flag currently used.

Cameroon

Cameroon Flag Meaning: Red, yellow and green are the pan-African colors and the pattern of the flag is similar to the French Tricolor. The green color in the flag symbolizes the rich forest vegetation of the country's southern region, as well as signifying hope for a happy future. The red represents independence and unity; while the yellow represents the savannas in the north and the sun as the source of Cameroon's happiness. The star symbolizes the unity of the country.

Cameroon Flag History: The Cameroon flag was adopted on May 20, 1975 after Cameroon was made a unitary state. Cameroon gained independence from France on January 1, 1960.

Cameroon Flag Facts: Cameroon is the second modern African state (after Ghana) to adopt pan-African colors. They are based on the colors of the Ethiopian flag.

Canada

Canadian Flag Meaning: In 1921, the Canadian flag's official colors were proclaimed by King George. The color red was taken from the Saint George's Cross and the color white from the French royal emblem.

Canadian Flag History: The Canadian flag was adopted on October 22, 1964. During World War I, Prime Minister Lester Pearson noticed that most Canadian battalions included a maple leaf in their insignia. Therefore, Pearson vowed he would campaign to put the maple leaf on the Canadian flag. Fifty years later, Pearson was involved in a 33-day debate which resulted in the maple leaf being placed on the Canadian flag. Even though Canada had been independent of Britain since July 1, 1867, all previous incarnations of Canada's flags had included the British Union Jack.

Canadian Flag Facts: The Canadian flag is also known as the Maple Leaf flag and was inspired by the flag of The Royal Military College of Canada. The French nickname for the Canadian flag is 'L'Unifolié', which means the one-leafed. The 11 points on the maple leaf emblem have no significance. Many people believe they stand for Canada's provinces, plus the federal government, but the emblem is just a recreation of an actual maple leaf. In Canadian pop culture, various patriotic comic book heroes use the Canadian flag as the design for their costumes, one example is Captain Canuck.

Cape-Verde

Cape Verde Flag Meaning: The stars represent the nation's islands and the blue represents infinite space of the sea and sky. The circle of stars symbolizes the nation's unity. The stripes symbolize the road to the construction of Cape Verde; while the color white represents peace and the color red represents effort.

Cape Verde Flag History: The Cape Verde flag was adopted on September 22, 1992 when Cape Verde severed its ties with Guinea Bissau, with whom it was supposed to unite with. Cape Verde declared independence from Portugal on July 5, 1975.

Cape Verde Flag Facts: The previous flag of Cape Verde was red, yellow and green - very similar to the flag of Guinea Bissau.

Central-African-Republic

Central African Republic Flag Meaning: The red vertical stripe, representing blood, is superimposed to symbolize the need for respect between Europeans and Africans. It also represents the blood of the nation; the blood spilt in its fight for independence; and the blood Central African's would spill to protect their homeland. The yellow star of independence symbolizes a bright future. The blue stripe represents vastness, freedom, serenity and the sky. The color white represents bravery, peace and dignity; while the green symbolizes hope and faith; and the yellow stripe represents the people's tolerance, hospitality and charity.

Central African Republic Flag History: The Central African Republic flag was adopted on December 1, 1958. It was designed by Barthélemy Boganda, the first president of the territory of Oubangoui-Chari, who believed France and Africa should march together. For the Central African Republic flag, Boganda combined the French tricolor flag's colors of red, white and blue with the Pan-African colors red, green and yellow. The Central African Republic received its independence from France on August 13, 1960.

Central African Republic Flag Facts: Political parties in the Central African Republic are forbidden to use the national flag in their propaganda.

Chad

Chad Flag Meaning: The blue stripe represents the sky, hope, agriculture and the waters in the south of the Chad. The yellow stripe symbolizes the sun and the desert in the north of Chad. The red stripe stands for progress, unity and sacrifice.

Chad Flag History: The flag of Chad was adopted on November 6, 1959, and was inspired by the French Tricolore flag and the pan-African colors, which were altered by using blue instead of green. The color change was made in order to avoid confusion between the flags of Chad's neighboring countries. Chad gained its independence from France on August 11, 1960.

Chad Flag Facts: The flag of Chad is the same as the flag of Romania, but the two flags are not related historically in any way.

Chile

Chilean Flag Meaning: The red stripe represents the blood of patriots who fought for Chile's independence. The white stripe symbolizes the snow of the Andes Mountains; while the blue stripe represents the sky. The star on the flag stresses the fact that Chile is a Unitarian republic, and not a federal republic.

Chilean Flag History: The Chilean flag was adopted on October 18, 1817, making it one of the oldest flags in the world. Chile gained independence from Spain on February 12, 1818.

Chilean Flag Facts: Chilean protocol says the flag can hang either horizontally or vertically, but the star must always be located in the top-left corner. The Chilean flag looks similar to the state of Texas' flag in the United States.

China

Chinese Flag Meaning: There a conflicting opinions over the meaning of the Chinese flag. One side states that the red color in China's flag symbolizes the revolution and the fact that the political power of China was achieved through the bloodshed of revolutionary martyrs who fought heroic struggles for the revolution. The big star is said to represent the Communist Party of China; while the four smaller stars are said to represent all of the ethnic groups that make up China. Much can be read into the fact that one point of the flag's big star points up the flag; while each of the smaller stars has a point aiming towards the centre of the big star. This is believed to signify that the Communist Party is the force at the core of the leadership of all Chinese people. The stars are yellow as an indication that the cause of socialism has a bright future in China.

Chinese Flag History: The Chinese flag was adopted on October 1, 1949 after the Chinese Civil War. It was designed by Zeng Liansong, an economist and talented artist. His work was one of more than 3,000 plus entries received for a Chinese flag design competition. The design underwent a few changes and was finally approved by the Chinese People's Political Consultative Conference on September 27, 1949. Originally the flag was to feature either a hammer and sickle in the largest star, or several horizontal lines below the stars.

Chinese Flag Facts: In 1999, to celebrate communist China's 50th anniversary, neighborhood committees, the communist government's local enforcers, ordered residents to display Chinese flags. Any household with a Chinese flag that was too old or shabby had to pay three dollars for a new one.

Colombia

Colombian Flag Meaning: There is no official meaning of the Colombian flag; however there are two popular theories on the meaning behind Colombia's flag's colors. One states that the yellow symbolizes sovereignty and justice; the blue stands for nobility, loyalty and vigilance; while the red represents valor, honor, generosity and victory through bloodshed. The second interpretation states the yellow stands for universal liberty; the blue for the equality of all races and social classes before God and the law; and red means fraternity. There is also a popular Colombian children's song which resonates - "yellow is our gold, blue is our vast seas and red is the blood that gave us our freedom".

Colombian Flag History: The Colombian flag was adopted on November 26, 1861, making it one of the world's oldest flags. Colombia declared independence from Spain on July 20, 1810

Colombian Flag Facts: The commercial use of the Colombian flag has been common at soccer games. In the past, a brewery had been sponsoring the Colombian team and was giving away free flags to supporters in the soccer stadiums. However, the beer company Colombian flags featured a logo of one of their beers - so when fans were flying the flag to support the team, they were also advertising the brewery.

Comoros

Comoros Flag Meaning: The four colored stripes represent the islands of the Comoros, these include - yellow (Mohéli), white (Mayotte), red (Anjouan) and blue (Grand Comore). The four stars also represent these islands and the crescent stands for Islam, the country's major religion.

Comoros Flag History: The Comoros flag was adopted in 2003, making it one of the world's newest flags. The Comoros gained independence from France in 1975.

Comoros Flag Facts: The previous flag used in Comoros was green with a white crescent and stars. It was in use from 1996 to 2001.

Congo

The Democratic Republic of the Congo Flag Meaning: Originally the stars on the left side of the flag represented the six provinces of the Democratic Republic of Congo, but this is no longer appropriate.

The Democratic Republic of the Congo Flag History: The Democratic Republic of the Congo flag was adopted on May 17, 1997. The country was formerly known as Zaire. It is often called Congo-Kinshasa, after its capital, to distinguish it from the Republic of Congo, which is a separate country. The Meocratic Republic of Congo gained independence from Belgium on June 30, 1960. The design of this flag was based on the old colonial flag, which didn't have the stars on the left.

The Democratic Republic of the Congo Flag Facts: The Democratic Republic of the Congo flag is very similar to the old flag used between1960-1963.

Costa-rica

Costa Rican Flag Meaning: The colors of the Costa Rican flag represent different aspects of Costa Rica: The color blue represents the sky, opportunities at reach, intellectual thinking, perseverance, infinite, eternity, and ideals of the religious and spiritual desires; the color white symbolizes clear thinking, happiness, wisdom, power and beauty of the sky, initiative to search for new endeavors, and peace; and the color red represents the warmth of the Costa Rican people, their love of life, their blood shed for freedom, and their generosity.

Costa Rican Flag History: The Costa Rican flag was adopted on November 27, 1906. Costa Rica's First Lady, Paci'fica Ferna'ndez Oreamuno, designed the flag in 1848. It was designed after the ideals of the French Revolution - freedom, equality, and brotherhood - and the colors of the French National Flag.

Costa Rican Flag Facts: The law in Costa Rica forbids citizens from flying any Costa Rican flags other than on national holidays, but this law isn't strictly enforced.

Cote-d-ivoire

Cote d'Ivoire Flag Meaning: According to Presidency of the Republic of Cote d'Ivoire - orange is the color of the land, rich and generous, the meaning of our fight, the blood of young people fighting for emancipation; white represents peace, but peace with justice; and green stands for hope and the certainty of a better future.

Cote d'Ivoire Flag History: The Cote d'Ivoire flag was adopted on December 4, 1959. The design of the Cote d'Ivoire flag was based on the French flag. Cote d'Ivoire gained independence from France on August 7, 1960.

Cote d'Ivoire Flag Facts: The flag of Cote d'Ivoire is similar to the flag of Ireland; although Ireland's flag is longer and the colors reversed. Protocol in Cote d'Ivoire states that saluting the flag should occur regularly in schools and colleges and during official ceremonies.

Croatia

Croatian Flag Meaning: The Croatian flag's colors were inherited from the country's coat of arms. An unofficial interpretation of the flag states that the colors represent the three symbols of Croatian history and people - the red represents the blood of Croatian martyrs; the white symbolizes Croatia's peaceful lamb like nature; and the blue represents Croatian devotion to God. The main area of the coat of arms is a checkerboard (chequy) that consists of 13 red and 12 silver (white) fields. The checkerboard has been a symbol of Croatian kings since at least the 10th Century. Above the checkerboard are five crowning coats which represent the historical regions from which Croatia originated.

Croatian Flag History: The Croatian flag was adopted on December 21, 1990, making it one of the world's newer flags. Croatia gained independence from Yugoslavia in 1991. The red, white and blue have been used as Croatia's flag since 1848.

Croatian Flag Facts: When Croatia was part of Yugoslavia its flag was the same, except for a five-pointed red star with a yellow border in place of the coat of arms.

Cuba

Cuban Flag Meaning: The Cuban government's official version of the meaning of the Cuban flag states that - the blue stripes refer to the three old divisions of the island; and the two white stripes represent the strength of the independent ideal. The red triangle symbolizes equality, fraternity and freedom, as well as the blood shed in the island's struggle for independence. Finally, the white star symbolizes the absolute freedom among the Cuban people.

Cuban Flag History: The Cuban flag was adopted on May 20, 1902. In 1848, Narciso López, a Venezuelan general made the first serious attempt to liberate Cuba from Spanish rule. He designed 'La Estrella Solitaria' -'The Lone Star'-banner, which is Cuba's present flag. In 1902 Cuba became an independent republic and López's flag was adopted as the official flag. The three blue stripes are the symbols of Cuba's original three provinces. This original Cuban flag has been used ever since; even after Fidel Castro seized the country after the Communist revolution in 1959.

Cuban Flag Facts: In the mid 1800's many people wanted to liberate Cuba from Spain, and unite the island with the United States of America. This could be the reason why the Cuban flag's colors are red, white and blue, with stripes and a star. After the United States seized Cuba from Spain during the Spanish-American War, the American Stars and Stripes flag flew from Jan. 1, 1899 until May 20, 1902.

Cyprus

Cypriot Flag Meaning: The Cypriot flag's colors were intentionally chosen to help promote peace between the two antagonistic communities living there (the Turks and Greeks). The green olive branches also symbolize peace. The colors of the Greek (blue) and Turkish (red) flags were deliberately avoided.

Cypriot Flag History: The Cypriot flag was adopted on August 16, 1960, after gaining independence from Britain. The Cypriot flag was selected by the President of the Republic, Mgr. Makarios, in 1960 after a proposal made by a school teacher. A new Cypriot flag was chosen from hundreds of flag competition entries by a committee of Greek and Turkish Cypriots in March 2004 but it was rejected after a close public vote.

Cypriot Flag Facts: The map of the island of Cyprus appears in golden/yellow on the flag for the sake of easier reproduction. Originally the map was going to be copper, a metal that got its name from the island's name - Cyprus. The Greek word for copper literally means "Cyprus metal", and there are large amounts of copper on the island of Cyprus. The French word 'cuivre' is derived from Latin 'cyprium aes'; which means 'Cyprus bronze'. Citizens of Cyprus have the right to fly the Cypriot, Greek or Turkish flag without any restriction.

Czech-Republic

Czech Republic Flag Meaning: The Czech Republic flag doesn't really have any significant meaning. The colors are Bohemian traditional colors, which were inherited from various coats of arms. The color and flag pattern was selected mainly to produce a Czech Republic flag that would be easily recognizable, especially in battle.

Czech Republic Flag History: The Czech Republic flag is identical to that of the former Czechoslovakia. The original flag was adopted on March 30, 1920. The Czech Republic adopted this flag as their own on December 17, 1992, going against an agreement that stated they wouldn't adopt any of Czechoslovakia's emblems. The country separated along with Slovakia on January 1, 1993.

Czech Republic Flag Facts: Before the separation of Slovakia and the Czech Republic, a resolution was passed by the Czechoslovakian government which stated neither of the two new states could continue to use any emblems of Czechoslovakia. After they separated, Slovakia adopted a white/blue/red flag with a coat of arms on it. The new Czech Republic adopted the flag of former Czechoslovakia which was a violation of the resolution. This upset Slovakia but the Czechs basically said that the country which made the resolution didn't exist any more and refused to change the flag.


Denmark

Danish Flag Meaning: The white cross on the Danish flag represents Christianity. The cross design of the Danish flag was also adopted by the other Nordic countries: Sweden, Norway, Finland and Iceland.

Danish Flag History: The Danish flag was adopted in 1625 and is generally considered the oldest continuously used national flag in the world. Legend has it that the Danish flag fell from the skies on June 15, 1219, the day in which King Waldemar II defeated the Estonians in battle. Historians, though, think the Danish flag was derived from old crusader banners of the time.

Danish Flag Facts: The national flag of Denmark is often called the Dannebrog which means 'Danish cloth'.The Danish flag has unusual proportions (ratio) and is almost square in shape.

Djibouti

Djibouti Flag Meaning: The white triangle stands for peace. The blue stripe represents the sea and sky and the green stripe symbolizes earth. The red star stands for unity.

Djibouti Flag History: The Djibouti flag was adopted on June 27, 1977, the same day the country gained independence from France.

Djibouti Flag Facts: The national flag of Djibouti was designed by Mr. Mahamoud Harbi, an independentist leader. The country's national emblem was designed by Mr. Hassan Robleh, an artist.

Dominica

Dominica Flag Meaning: The ten green stars, which are the traditional symbol of hope, represent the ten parishes of Dominica. The Sisserou Parrot is the national bird of Dominica and symbolizes flight towards greater heights and fulfillment of aspirations. The Parrot also comes from the Dominica Coat of Arms, representing the official seal of the country. The Dominican flag's stripes form a cross representing the Trinity of God. The cross itself demonstrates belief in God. An official Dominican announcement also stated: "The yellow stripe represents the sunshine of our land, our main agricultural products: citrus and bananas and also a symbol of the Carib people, the first inhabitants of the Island. The white stripe represents the clarity of our rivers and waterfalls and the purity of aspiration of our people. The black stripe represents the rich black soil of our island on which our agriculture is based and also our African heritage. The general background of dark green symbolizes our rich verdant forests and the general lushness of the island.

Dominica Flag History: The Dominican flag was adopted on November 3, 1978 when it gained independence from Britain. The Dominican flag was then modified in 1988, when yellow outlines were added to the stars and the white and black stripes changed positions with each other. In 1988 the parrot, which was originally facing to the right, was turned to face the left of the Dominican flag.

Dominica Flag Facts: The Dominican flag was based on a design which was entered into a flag competition.

Dominican-republic

Dominican Republic Flag Meaning: The blue in the Dominican Republic flag stands for liberty; the color red for the fire and bloodshed of the struggle for independence; and the white cross symbolizes the sacrifice of the people.

Dominican Republic Flag History: The Dominican Republic flag was adopted on November 6, 1844, making it one of the world's oldest flags. The Dominican Republic gained its independence from Haiti on February 27, 1844.

Dominican Republic Flag Facts: The flag of the Dominican Republic has its roots in the Haitian flag of the early 19th century.

 


East Timor

East Timor Flag Meaning: According to the Constitution of the Democratic Republic of East Timor (Timor-Leste), the yellow triangle represents "the traces of colonialism in East Timor's History"; the black triangle represents "the obscurantism that needs to be overcome"; the red base of the flag represents "the struggle for national liberation"; whilst the star, or "the light that guides", is white to represent peace.

East Timor Flag History: The East Timor flag was adopted on May 20, 2002, making it one of the world's newest flags. It is the same flag that was used from 1975 to 1979. East Timor declared independence from Portugal on November 28, 1975. Wars followed, and East Timor regained independence on May 20, 2002. The old flag was then readopted. Timor Leste is the country's official Portuguese name.

East Timor Flag Facts: Following the parliamentary elections, the constitutional assembly restored all of the East Timor symbols from the 1975 independence, including the East Timor flag.

Ecuador

Ecuador Flag Meaning: The red in the Ecuador flag represents the blood shed by the soldiers and martyrs in the battles for independence. The color blue stands for the color of the sea and sky; while the yellow symbolizes the abundance and fertility of the nation's crops and land.

Ecuador Flag History: The Ecuador flag was adopted on September 26, 1860, making it one of the world's oldest flags.

Ecuador Flag Facts: The flags of Ecuador, Colombia and Venezuela are very similar because upon their independence in 1822 they formed a confederation called Gran Colombia. After they parted ways in 1830, they all retained the same essential flag design, whose inspiration is attributed to freedom fighter General Francisco Miranda. The bird on the Ecuador flag's coat of arms is an Andean Condor. This native South American bird is also on the arms of Bolivia, Chile and Colombia.

Egypt

Egyptian Flag Meaning: The colors of the Egyptian flag are traditional Pan-Arabic colors. The red stripe refers to the period before the 1952 revolution; which brought a group of army officers to power after deposing King Farouk, the King of Egypt. This period was characterized by the struggle against British occupation of the country. The white symbolizes the revolution which ended the monarchy but without bloodshed. The color black symbolizes the end of the oppression of the Egyptian people at the hands of the Monarchy and British colonialism.

Egyptian Flag History: This version of the Egyptian flag was adopted on October 4, 1984. Modern Egypt's first national flag was adopted when Egypt gained partial independence from Britain on February 28, 1922. The Egyptian flag consisted of a white crescent with three stars on a green background. Following the 1952 coup, the Egyptian flag was replaced by the current design and since then has only seen changes to the centre emblem.

Egyptian Flag Facts: The eagle emblem in the middle of the Egyptian flag is sometimes pictured with different colors inside of it. Abusing the Egyptian flag in any way is a criminal offense in Egypt and is punishable by law - as it indicates contempt of the power of the state. Egyptian laws also protect the abuse of foreign flags or national emblems of other countries.

El-Salvador

El Salvador Flag Meaning: The blue stripes represent the Pacific Ocean and Caribbean Sea; while the white stripe symbolizes peace. The state coat of arms on El Salvador's flag is based on the coat of arms of the former United Provinces of Central America. The coat of the arms shows a triangle which represents equality and the three branches of El Salvador's government. Inside the triangle are five volcanoes which symbolize the five former members of the federation, flanked by the blue of the ocean and sea. The triangle contains symbols of liberty, ideals of the people and peace, which are represented by a red cap, golden rays and the rainbow. The triangle also shows the date that El Salvador gained independence from Spain. Underneath the triangle lies El Salvador's national motto which translates in English to 'God, Union and Liberty'. The fourteen clusters of leaves represent the 14 departments or states of El Salvador.

El Salvador Flag History: The El Salvador flag was adopted on September 27, 1972. El Salvador, which in Spanish means 'the savior', gained its independence from Spain on September 15, 1821 and independence from the Central American federation in 1842.

El Salvador Flag Facts: The flag of El Salvador is based on the flag of the United States of Central America. Unauthorized use of the El Salvador flag will result in a monetary fine. There are three classes and sizes of national flags in El Salvador they consist of: "The great flag [la magna]." "A second flag for use on public buildings and offices." "A third flag used for parades.

England

English Flag Meaning: The flag represents St. George, the patron saint of England.

English Flag History: The legend of George slaying the dragon dates back to the 12th century. Saint George became England's patron saint during the 13th century. The Red Cross first appeared in the crusades and is one of the earliest known emblems used to represent England. The earliest record of St George's flag being used at sea as an English flag was in 1545.

English Flag Facts: Many are unaware that the Cross of St George is the flag of England, and not the more familiar Union Jack. The Union Jack is the flag of the entire United Kingdom, including Great Britain (England, Scotland, and Wales) and Northern Ireland. The cross of St. George, however, is incorporated into the Union Jack.

Equatorial-Guinea

Equatorial Guinea Flag Meaning: The stars represent the mainland and the islands of Equatorial Guinea. The green stripe symbolizes the country's lush vegetation and agricultural wealth. The white represents peace and the red stands for Equatorial Guinea's struggle for independence. The blue triangle symbolizes the sea, which links the different parts of the nation together. The silk cotton or god tree in the coat of arms represents the country's historical link to Spain. It was under a similar tree that a treaty was signed with the Spanish at the time of colonization.

Equatorial Guinea Flag History: This version of the Equatorial Guinea flag was adopted on August 21, 1979. Equatorial Guinea achieved independence from Spain on October 12, 1968, and adopted a national flag on the same day. The Equatorial Guinea flag's original coat of arms were removed in the 1970s and replaced with a different emblem. The coat of arms returned in August 1979.

Equatorial Guinea Flag Facts: It was under a silk cotton tree, pictured on the Equatorial Guinea flag, that a treaty was signed with the Spanish at the time of colonization.

Eritrea

Eritrean Flag Meaning: The green stripe symbolizes the agricultural and livestock economy of Eritrea. The red stands for the blood shed during Eritrea's struggle for independence. The blue represents the marine wealth while the yellow represents the mineral wealth of Eritrea. The olive wreath and branch on the flag originate from Eritrea's first national flag which was used between 1952 and 1959. The olive wreath was adopted from the United Nations flag and symbolizes peace.

Eritrean Flag History: The Eritrean flag was adopted on December 5, 1995, making it one of the world's newest flags. Eritrea received independence from Ethiopia on May 24, 1993.

Eritrean Flag Facts: The basic design of the Eritrean flag was adopted from the flag of the Eritrean People's Liberation Front, which led the fight for Eritrean freedom.

Estonia

Estonian Flag Meaning: The colors of the national flag represent Estonia's history, nature and folk costumes. The blue stripe represents faith, loyalty and devotion as well as the sky, sea, and lakes. The black symbolizes the dark past and suffering of the Estonian people as well as the traditional black jacket of the Estonian peasant. The white represents striving towards enlightenment and virtue, hope and freedom. White also symbolizes the color of birch bark and snow, and Estonian summer nights illuminated by the midnight sun.

Estonian Flag History: This Estonian flag was adopted on August 7, 1990. It was originally adopted on November 21st, 1918, after Estonia declared independence from Russia. Estonia was taken over by Russia again in June 1940 and the flag was banned. Estonia regained its independence on August 20, 1991. The Estonian flag was flown in both the 1905 and 1917 Russian revolutions as a symbol of Estonian independence. The current Estonian flag was designed in December 1990.

Estonian Flag Facts: The roots of the Estonian flag date back to 1881 when Estonian university students attempted to form a fraternity. They adopted blue, black and white as the fraternity's colors.

Ethiopia

Ethiopian Flag Meaning: The colored stripes on the Ethiopian flag are significant - the red stripe stands for power, faith and blood; the yellow symbolizes the church, peace, natural wealth and love; and the green represents the land and hope. The colors were also interpreted to have a connection to the Holy Trinity, and the three main provinces of Ethiopia. The star represents unity of the people and the races that make up Ethiopia. The five rays on the outside of the star represent prosperity and the blue disk represents peace.

Ethiopian Flag History: The Ethiopian flag was adopted on February 6, 1996, making it one of the world's newest flags. The Ethiopian colors date from the 1890s, when forces loyal to the emperor are believed to have flown pennants of green, yellow and red as they fought against Italian forces. The first Ethiopian flag using these same colors was adopted in 1897.

Ethiopian Flag Facts: Ethiopia is credited with establishing the green, yellow and red colors that have come to symbolize African independence and unity. Ethiopia is the oldest independent African state. The colors became known as Pan African colors. Sometimes black is added to these colors to represent the African people.

 


Falkland Islands

Falkland Islands Flag Meaning: The Union Jack represents the Falkland Islands' links with Britain. The ship in the coat of arms is supposed to be the 'Desire' - the ship that discovered the islands in 1592. The colony's motto 'Desire the Right' is written on a scroll at the bottom of the coat of arms.

Falkland Islands Flag History: The current Falkland Islands flag was adopted on September 29, 1948. The flag changed in appearance 1999 when the Ministry of Defense changed the specification for the placement of badges on the flag. The size of the badge was increased and all white discs were removed.

Falkland Islands Flag Facts: Before 1948 there was a bull in the emblem, but since sheep-raising is the major livestock on the Falkland Islands, the bull was changed to a ram.

Faroe Islands

Faroe Islands Flag Meaning: The white base represents the pure sky as well as the foam of the waves breaking against the islands' coasts. The red and blue stripes are both colors found in traditional Faroese headdress. The colors are also found in the flags of Norway and Iceland.

Faroe Islands Flag History: The current Faroe Islands flag was adopted on June 5, 1959. The flag first originated with Faroese students in Copenhagen and was later brought to the Faroe Islands where it was first raised on June 22, 1919. In 1931 it came into common but unofficial use.

Faroe Islands Flag Facts: The flag of the Faroe Islands is called 'Merkio' which means the sign or banner. In the Faroe Islands it is unacceptable to fly two flags on the same rope or pole. However flying two flags side by side is a sign of respect as neither one is superior or inferior. They must be the same size though or as close as possible.

Fiji

Fijian Flag Meaning: The Union Jack represents Fiji's links to Britain. The light blue base symbolizes the Pacific Ocean. The dove in the coat of arms symbolizes peace. Two symbols of the emblem represent Fiji's colonial past. The golden lion holding a coconut represents Britain, as does the red cross of St George of England in the middle of the emblem.

Fijian Flag History: The Fiji flag was adopted on October 10, 1970 the day it received independence from Britain. The base of the Fiji flag, flown before Fiji's independence, was dark blue.

Fijian Flag Facts: Fiji held a competition upon its independence to design a new Fiji flag, but their current flag is still very similar to their old flag. This might be because Fiji still has strong economic and political ties with Britain. One reason for the light blue base was to distinguish the Fijian flag from the flags of neighboring British Commonwealth countries.

Finland

Finnish Flag Meaning: An old poet described Finland's colors as representing "the blue of our lakes and the white snow of our winters." The cross on the Finland flag is common in most Scandinavian flags, and symbolizes Finland's hereditary link to the other Scandinavian countries.

Finnish Flag History: The flag was originally adopted in 1918, based on the country's coat of arms. The current Finland flag was adopted on May 26, 1978. Finland was under Russian occupation from 1899 to 1917, and the nation sought to use a flag of its own. It wasn't until Finland gained independence in 1917 that a design for an official flag gained momentum.

Finnish Flag Facts: The Finnish flag is modeled on the design of the flag of Denmark's and Sweden's flags. By law, the Finland flag must not be dirty or damaged, and must not be defaced or decorated. When the Finland flag is washed it must be dried indoors. The Finland flag must always be respected, and must not be buried in the ground or used for any other purpose.

France

French Flag Meaning: The French flag is based on a red, white and blue cockade (a badge of concentric circles) which was worn by King Louis XVI while addressing a revolutionary gathering in Paris. The King had added white to the cockade as it is the traditional color of French royalty. Red and blue are also the traditional livery colors of Paris, the country's capital city.

French Flag History: The French flag was adopted in May 1794, making it one of the world's oldest flags. The French flag was created in 1790, but with the colors were reversed to how they appear on the flag today. After Napoleon's defeat at Waterloo the French flag was put out of use, however it was reintroduced in 1830 and has remained in use ever since.

French Flag Facts: The French flag is commonly known as the 'French Tricolore', and has been the inspiration for many other flags around the world.

 


Gabon

Gabon Flag Meaning: The flag represents Gabon's geographical position in the world. The yellow stripe through the middle of the flag represents the equator which runs through Gabon, and it also represents the sun. The color blue represents the Atlantic Ocean which laps Gabon's shores, and the color green symbolizes the country's lush vegetation and forests.

Gabon Flag History: The Gabon flag was adopted on August 9, 1960, just over a week before Gabon gained its independence from France on August 17, 1960.

Gabon Flag Facts: The basic design of the current national Gabon flag was first used in 1959, but at that time the French national flag was incorporated in the upper left corner of Gabon's flag.

Gambia

Gambian Flag Meaning: The red stripe represents the sun shining on the Gambia River and the blue represents that river, which runs through the center of the country and the center of the flag. The green symbolizes the land, forests and agriculture and the white stripes stand for unity, peace and purity.

Gambian Flag History: This Gambian flag was adopted on February 18, 1965, the day it gained independence from Britain.

Gambian Flag Facts: The idea of the country's national flag came from The Republic of The Gambia, but the flag was actually designed by the College of Arms in England.

Georgia

Georgian Flag Meaning: The central design element of the "Five Cross" flag is the St. George Cross in the middle of it. The St. George Cross is still used as the national flag of England. St George is the patron saint of Georgia. According to Georgian scholar Giorgi Gabeskiria, the four small crosses were probably added during the reign of Giorgi V who drove out the Mongols. Around that era, the new flag design was adopted as a variation of the Jerusalem cross, a symbol used by crusaders in the Holy Land, which also used a central cross with four smaller "crosslets" in its four corners. The crosses are said to have represented the five Holy Wounds of Christ.

Georgian Flag History: This Georgian flag was adopted on January 14, 2004, making it possibly the world's newest flag. It was used for about three years as the flag of the National Movement, whose leader was Mikhail Saakashvili, the current President of Georgia (2004). Georgia gained its independence from the Soviet Union on April 9, 1991. The first record of the five-cross flag design dates to the mid 14th century when an unknown Franciscan monk wrote that the kingdom's flag was a white-colored cloth with five red crosses on it.

Georgian Flag Facts: The basic design of this Georgian flag was in use over 500 years ago as it was previously the flag of the medieval Georgian kingdom.

Germany

German Flag Meaning: The colors black, red and gold have been associated with Germany since the middle ages, but the current German flag colors are traced back to early 19th century volunteers, who fought for the country in the Napoleonic wars. The colors are based on the soldiers' uniforms which were black coats with red braid and gold buttons.

German Flag History: The current German flag was adopted on May 9, 1949. The German flag has actually been used at least three times in German history. It was adopted in 1848 and was abolished in 1852. It was then readopted as the flag of the Weimar Republic on August 11, 1919, and again abolished on March 12 1933, when it was replaced by the flag of the Third Reich. The German flag was also used by the German Democratic Republic (East Germany) until 1959, but a coat of arms to it from 1959 to 1989. Germany separated into two countries after the Second World War and reunited on October 3, 1990, and this flag was chosen.

German Flag Facts: The colors of the German flag now represent the unification of Germany. From 1935 to 1945, the German flag featured a red background with a black Swastika in the middle of it on a white circle. The former East German flag (1959 to 1989) featured Communist emblems on it.

Ghana

Ghana Flag Meaning: The Ghana flag makes use of the Pan-African colors - the red stripe represents the blood spilt during Ghana's struggle for independence; the yellow stripe symbolizes the mineral wealth of the country; and the green represents the vegetation and fertility of the nation. The black five-pointed star symbolizes African freedom and the African people. Ghana was the first African nation to feature these colors.

Ghana Flag History: The current version of the Ghana flag was adopted on February 28, 1966. It was originally adopted on March 6, 1957, when Ghana gained independence from Britain but a white stripe replaced the yellow one from 1964 to 1966. The country also changed its name to Ghana from the Gold Coast when it gained independence.

Ghana Flag Facts: On November 23, 1958, a union between Ghana and Guinea was formed with a flag similar to Ghana's but with two black stars on it.

Gibraltar

Gibraltar Flag Meaning: The Gibraltar flag is actually an elongated version of the arms of Gibraltar. The castle and key and the Montis Insignia Calpe motto are one of the oldest battle honors in the British Army. They were featured as the badge of several regiments who defended Gibraltar during the sieges. The badge is borne on the Colors of several regiments.

Gibraltar Flag History: The Gibraltar flag was adopted on November 8, 1982. Gibraltar has the same status as Bermuda, Falkland Islands, etc. Gibraltar, like the others, to be called the Crown colonies but are now considered United Kingdom Dependent Territories or Overseas Territories.

Gibraltar Flag Facts: The coat of arms of a key suspended from a chain from a three-towered castle was given to Gibraltar in December 1501 by King Ferdinand and Queen Isabella. Gibraltar was Spanish territory until 1714.

Great-britain

Greece

Greek Flag Meaning: The nine stripes are said to stand for the nine syllables of the Greek patriots' motto: 'Eleutheria e Thanatos' meaning 'Freedom or Death'. but another theory states that they also symbolize the nine Muses, the goddesses of art and civilization. The blue and white colors represent the Greek sea and sky combined with white clouds and waves. The white also represents the purity of the country's struggle for independence and for freedom. The cross symbolizes Greek Orthodoxy which the established religion of the country.

Greek Flag History: The current Greek flag was adopted on December 22, 1978. The flag of Greece dates back to the Greek revolutionary war against the Ottoman Turks in the early 19th century. In 1822, the first blue and white Greek flag with a cross in the upper left corner was adopted in Greece. Independence was declared from the Ottoman Empire on March 25, 1821.

Greek Flag Facts: The basic design of the striped Greek flag has remained in use for years; however the shade of the blue has altered a number of times.

Greenland

Greenland Flag Meaning: Thue Christiansen, the flag's designer, said this about the meaning of the flag, the large white part in the flag symbolizes the ice cap and our fjords are represented by the red part in the circle. The white part of the circle symbolizes the ice bergs and the pack ice, and the large red part in the flag represents the ocean.

Greenland Flag History: The Greenland flag was adopted on June 21, 1985. The first proposal for a flag of Greenland happened in 1973 when several people suggested that a green-white-blue flag might be appropriate for the country. This suggestion inspired others to display their designs, and in 1974 a newspaper published 11 proposals. Ten of these designs had a Scandinavian cross on them. However, in a vote organized by the newspaper paper, the Danish flag remained the favorite. The government held a design contest in 1980 and 555 designs were sent in. However the Government couldn't agree on a design so they invited artists to submit more designs. The current Greenland flag won on a vote of 14-11. Several people were unhappy with the decision not to adopt a Scandinavian cross flag. Greenland is a Danish dependency but has been self governing since 1979.

Greenland Flag Facts: Greenland's flag is called 'Erfalasorput' which means 'our flag', but is also called 'Aappalaaroq' - 'the red'. This term also used to be applied to the Danish flag. In Thue Christiansen's words: The colors are the same as 'Dannebrog' (the Danish national flag) and thus we can also continue to call our flag Aappalaartoq, 'the red'.

Grenada

Grenada Flag Meaning: The color yellow in Grenada's flag symbolizes the sun and the friendliness of the inhabitants; the green represents the country's vegetation and agriculture; and the red stands for the courage and vitality of Grenada's people. The yellow stars represent the seven parishes of the country. The nutmeg signifies that Grenada is one of the world's largest producers of nutmeg.

Grenada Flag History: Grenada received independence from Britain on February 3, 1974 and adopted this flag four days later on February 7, 1974.

Grenada Flag Facts: The nutmeg on the left side of Grenada's flag also represents the importance of agriculture to Grenada's economy. It also represents a link to Grenada's former name which was the 'Isle of Spice'.

Guatemala

Guatemalan Flag Meaning: In the Guatemalan flag's coat of arms, the crossed rifles indicate Guatemala's willingness to defend itself by war if need be; while the olive branches symbolize the preferred peace. The sky blue stripes represent the fact that Guatemala is located between the Pacific and Atlantic Oceans, and the white stripe stands for the purity of the country's values and peace.

Guatemalan Flag History: The current Guatemalan flag was adopted on December 26, 1997, making it one of the world's newest flags. Guatemala received independence from Spain on September 15, 1821. The colors of the Guatemalan flag have their roots in the flag of the former federation of the United Provinces of Central America.

Guatemalan Flag Facts: The stripes of the Guatemalan flag were changed from horizontal to vertical in 1871 to distinguish it from the flags of the other Central American countries.

Guernsey

Guernsey Flag Meaning: The St George's Cross represents Guernsey's ties with England. The Gold cross represents Duke William of Normandy, who used a cross like this on his flag in the Battle of Hastings.

Guernsey Flag History: The current Guernsey flag was adopted on April 30 1985 when the gold cross was added to distinguish the Guernsey flag from the flag of England. Guernsey is a British Crown dependency and a member of the Channel Islands. The islands were the only British soil occupied by German troops in World War II. And many people from Guernsey were deported into German camps.

Guernsey Flag Facts: Guernsey's previous flag was just the St. George's Cross. Guernsey was permitted to use the St. George's Cross it in 1936 as its state flag.

Guinea-Bissau

Guinea-Bissau Flag Meaning: The black star on the Guinea-Bissau flag symbolizes freedom and the African people; the red stripe represents the blood spilt for the country's liberty and for the nation's suffering during colonial rule; while the yellow represents the sun and labor; and the green stands for the lush vegetation, agriculture and hope of Guinea-Bissau.

Guinea-Bissau Flag History: The Guinea-Bissau flag was adopted on September 24, 1973, the day the country declared independence from Portugal.

Guinea-Bissau Flag Facts: The Guinea-Bissau flag incorporates the Pan-African colors of red, yellow and green, which have been adopted by many African ex-colonies to symbolize African independence and unity. It is believed the Pan-African colors of the Guinea-Bissau flag originated from the flag of Ethiopia, the oldest independent nation in Africa.

Guinea

Guinea Flag Meaning: Sékou Touré, was Guinea's first president from its independence in 1958 until Touré died in 1984. Touré explained the meaning of Guinea's flag's colors in the following speech: "Red is the color of blood, symbol of our anti-colonialist martyrs. It is the sweat that runs over the ivory body of farmers, factory workers and other active workers. It is the wish for progress. Therefore red matches perfectly the first word of our motto: "Travail" (Work). Yellow is the color of Guinean gold and African sun. It is the source of energy, generosity and equality for all men to which he gives light equally. Therefore yellow matches perfectly with the second word of our motto: "Justice". Green is the color of the African vegetation. 85% of the population are farmers living in the countryside, which is ever covered with a green coat. Green symbolizes prosperity which will surely arise from the wide wealth of soil and subsoil, and the difficult life of the countryside masses in our country. Therefore, green will confirm the meaning of the third word of the motto: "Solidarite' (Solidarity).

Guinea Flag History: The Guinea flag was adopted on November 10, 1958, after gaining independence from France on October 2, 1958.

Guinea Flag Facts: The Guinea flag is similar to the flag of Ghana, except that on Ghana's flag the stripes are placed horizontally. The design of the Guinea flag is based on the French flag, However on Guinea's flag the French blue, white and red colors are replaced with the Pan-African colors of red, yellow and green.

Guyana

Guyana Flag Meaning: The green symbolizes Guyana's forests, vegetation and agriculture. The Golden Arrowhead (yellow) represents the country's mineral wealth and its golden future. The red stands for the country's eagerness and enthusiasm to embrace the nation-building process. The white represents Guyana's abundant water resources and the black indicates the perseverance and endurance of the nation.

Guyana Flag History: The Guyana flag was adopted on May 26, 1966, the day Guyana received independence from Britain. The country also changed its name at this time to 'Guyana', from British 'Guiana'. The Guyana flag is based on a design submitted to a government contest, held in 1962, by an American vexillologist named Dr. Whitney Smith. Dr. Smith's design, however, didn't include the borders around the yellow and red triangles.

Guyana Flag Facts: The Guyana flag is also known as the Golden Arrowhead.

 


Haiti

Haitian Flag Meaning: The Haitian flag is an adaptation of the French national flag. The blue stripe represents the union of black Haitians and mulatto Haitians, who are represented by the red stripe.

Haitian Flag History: The current Haitian flag was adopted on February 26, 1986. Haiti declared independence from France on January 1, 1804. The Haitian flag was originally blue and red vertical stripes, which was an adaptation of the French national flag. The white stripe of the French flag was omitted because it represented white colonial oppression. The vertical stripes were changed to horizontal stripes in the mid-19th century.

Haitian Flag Facts: The Haitian flag is very similar to the flag of Liechtenstein.

Honduras

Honduran Flag Meaning: The blue stripes represent the Pacific Ocean and the Caribbean Sea. The five stars represent the five nations of the United States of Central America (Honduras, El Salvador, Costa Rica, Nicaragua, and Guatemala) and the hope that the nations may form a union again.

Honduran Flag History: The Honduran flag was adopted on January 9, 1866, making it one of the world's oldest flags. The present Honduran flag is similar to that of the United States of Central America flag, which came to an end in the years 1838 to 1839. All of the countries in the United States of Central America gained independence from Spain on September 15, 1821. Honduras separated from the United States of Central America and declared its independence on November 5th 1838.

Honduran Flag Facts: The blue and white of the current Honduran flag represent an historical link to the other countries of the United States of Central America. These colors also remain in the flags of the other former members.

Hong-kong

Hungary

Hungarian Flag Meaning: The red stripe symbolizes strength; the white stripe represents faithfulness and fidelity; and the green stands for hope.

Hungarian Flag History: The current Hungarian flag was adopted on October 1, 1957, but was first used in the 1848 to 1849 uprising. However, the revolution failed and it wasn't until after the collapse of the Austro-Hungarian Empire in 1918, that the Hungarian flag again officially represented Hungary. The Hungarian flag was maintained until the occupation of Hungary by Germany in 1944. After the Second World War Hungary became a Soviet controlled nation in 1945 and adopted five different national flags over the next 11 years, all which were based on the red-white-green horizontal striped tricolour. In 1956, Anti-Soviet feelings led to the readoption of the plain red-white-green horizontal striped Hungarian flag.

Hungarian Flag Facts: The Hungarian royal crown appeared in the center of the national flag up until 1945. The Hungarian flag's design was based on the French Tricolore, used during the French Revolution.

 


Iceland

Icelandic Flag Meaning: The cross on the Icelandic flag represents Iceland's Scandinavian connection. The Icelandic flag was designed by Matthias Thordarson. He explained the colors as representing blue for the mountains, white for ice and snow and red for fire and lava as Iceland has much volcanic activity. Blue and white are the country's traditional colors. The Icelandic flag is a reversed version of the Norwegian flag and it reflects Iceland's early ancestral link to Norway. It also incorporates the red and white of Denmark's flag.

Icelandic Flag History: The Icelandic flag was adopted on June 19, 1915. The King of Denmark approved, in principle, the adoption of an Icelandic national flag in 1913 and this led to the introduction of the current flag design. The Icelandic flag was used unofficially since 1913. The Icelandic flag remained unchanged when Iceland became a self-governing state in 1918 and then an independent republic in 1944.

Icelandic Flag Facts: According to Icelandic law the use of the flag is a privilege and not a right, therefore the owner of the flag must follow instructions on its usage and make sure that the Icelandic flag is in excellent condition. The law also states that nobody shall disrespect the Icelandic flag physically or verbally. If they do the person faces a fine or imprisonment up to one year. Law also states that the Icelandic flag shall not be flown before 7am and it should preferably not be flown after sunset but must not be flown past midnight. However if the Icelandic flag is flown at an outdoor assembly, an official gathering, funeral or a memorial the flag may be flown after sunset or as long as the event lasts, though never past midnight.

India

Indian Flag Meaning: At the time of its initial introduction, in 1931, the Indian flag's colors represented the two main ethnic groups of India - the saffron stripe represented the Hindu people; and the green stripe represented the Muslim people. The white stripe white represented the peace desired between them and the truth. An updated meaning has interpreted the saffron symbol as representing courage and sacrifice; the white representing purity and truth; and the green standing for faith, fertility and chivalry. The Wheel of Law's 24 spokes are said to represent each hour of the day, as well as the endless circle of life.

Indian Flag History: The Indian flag was adopted on July 22, 1947. Just before India received independence from Britain on Aug. 15, 1947, the nationalist political party, the Indian National Congress, which included Mohandas Gandhi, adopted the design for the national flag of India. The Indian flag was based on a flag first introduced by the Indian National Congress in 1931.

Indian Flag Facts: The Indian national flag is also known as the 'tiranga', which in Hindi means 'tricolor'. As of January 15, 2002, Indian citizens were allowed to fly the Indian flag throughout the year. Earlier they were only allowed to do so on special days such as Republic Day and Independence Day. The Delhi High Court ruled that displaying the Indian flag was part of the fundamental right to freedom of expression.

Indonesia

Indonesian Flag Meaning: The flags on the Indonesian flag represent the following: the red stripe symbolizes blood and represents the human body; the white stripe represents the soul and the spirit; and when put together the red and white represent a complete human being.

Indonesian Flag History: The Indonesian flag was adopted on August 17, 1945. The first Indonesian flag was flown among Japanese occupation forces on the day Indonesia's independence was proclaimed. However, the previous Dutch colonial rulers didn't recognize Indonesian independence until December 27, 1949. In 1922 the Indonesian flag was used by activists seeking Indonesian independence from Dutch colonial rule and was later flown in 1928, by nationalists on the island of Java to represent the Indonesian campaign for independence. The Indonesian flag is based on a banner believed to have been flown in the late 13th century by the Majapahit Empire.

Indonesian Flag Facts: The Indonesian national flag is called "Sang Saka Merah Putih" (exalted bi-color)

Iran

Iranian Flag Meaning: The green stripe symbolizes Islam and the white represents purity and peace. The red stripe symbolizes blood and valor. The writing is Allah-o Akbar (God is Great) which is written 22 times in stylized Kufi script - this represents February 11, 1979, which was the day of the Iranian Revolution. The coat of arms symbolizes strength and fortitude and the growth of the Muslim faith. The stylized emblem as a whole reads Allah or God.

Iranian Flag History: The Iranian flag was adopted on July 29, 1980. The colors of the Iranian flag are traditional and probably date from at least the 18th century. A plain horizontal striped tricolor flag of green, white and pink had been in use in Iran since 1905. The pink stripe was officially changed to red in 1933. Iran was a monarchy for nearly 400 years until a republic was declared in 1979, after Muslim clerics and students overthrew the last Shah.

Iranian Flag Facts: The Iranian flag's centerpiece formerly consisted of a lion with a sword standing before a rising sun, with a crown above. But all traditional flags and banners were abolished after the abdication of the shah in 1979. The new emblem was designed by Hamid Nadimi, and was officially approved by Ayatollah Khomeini on May 9, 1980.

Iraq

Iraqi Flag Meaning: Red, white, black and green are called the pan-Arab colors. They have been linked to the Arab people and Islamic faith for centuries. The colors stand for Arab unity and independence and are used in the flags of many countries in the region. The green stars symbolize Iraq's unsuccessful attempt to unite with Egypt and Syria and each star was to represent a country in the union. Today they represent Iraq's desire for Arab unity. The writing on the flag reads Allah-o Akbar (God is Great).

Iraqi Flag History: The Iraqi flag was adopted on July, 31, 1963, but it was slightly modified on Jan. 13, 1991. The takbir [Allah Akbar (God is great) in Arabic script] was added to the 1963 flag during the Gulf War on January 13, 1991. Iraq's flag has had four different designs since the creation of Iraq in 1921. The Iraqi flag is based on the Arab Liberation Flag, introduced by Egyptian army officers involved in the 1952 coup d'etat, which overthrew the Egyptian monarchy. It has since been the inspiration for the flags of several countries in the region. Iraq was mandated as independent from Britain on October 3, 1932.

Iraqi Flag Facts: A new flag for Iraq was proposed in April 2004 but nothing has really become of it. At a ceremony on June 28, 2004 when the new interim government of Iraq was sworn in, a Iraqi flag similar to the 1991 pattern, but wider and with the stars and with the Arabic script more loosely spread across the width of the flag was present. The loose handwriting on the Iraqi flag was rumored to the writing of Saddam Hussein.

Ireland

Irish Flag Meaning: The colors of the Irish flag have no official meaning but many legends have risen to account for the colors. One of them states that the Green stripe is represents Catholics, the Orange represents Protestants and the white stripe symbolizes the peace between them. Another one states the orange color is associated with the Protestants in Ulster and those that derived from William III who defeated the Irish Catholics at the Battle of the Boyne in the late 1600s. It was included in the Irish flag in an attempt to reconcile the Protestants with the Irish independence movement.

Irish Flag History: The Irish flag was adopted on December 29, 1937. The first known use of the Irish tricolour, which is based on the French national flag, was by Irish nationalists shortly after the French Revolution in 1848. After the Easter Rising of 1916, which was a nationalist uprising against British rule, the Irish tricolor became widely regarded as the national flag. In 1922, Ireland was separated into two states by Britain. An independent Irish state, called the Irish Free State, adopted the Irish flag and Northern Ireland which consists of the mainly Protestant northeast part of the island elected to remain governed by Great Britain. The Irish flag remained unchanged when the Irish Republic was established on April18, 1949.

Irish Flag Facts: There is a cocktail called the "Irish flag" which consists of 2 cc Mint spirit, 2 cc Irish cream and 2 cc Grand Marnier. The ingredients have to be poured in the above order and very gently down a long spoon so that the colored liquids won't mix together. The drink, when made, resembles the green, white and orange of the Irish flag.

Israel

Israeli Flag Meaning: The Star of David (Magen David) is also known as the Jewish star and is a symbol of Judaism. The Star was officially used as a Jewish symbol for the first time in 1354. A modern interpretation of the Israeli flag states the blue and white stripes represent purity, guided by the principles of the Torah and the Star of David represents a new beginning for Israel.

Israeli Flag History: The Israeli flag was adopted on October 28, 1948, five months after the country's independence on May 14, 1948 from the British Mandate of Palestine-Israel. The Israeli flag is modeled after the Jewish prayer shawl known as the Tallit. The current Israeli flag is based on the Zionist movement flag which is about 100 years old, which represented the Jewish population in the Mandate era but had no official standing.

Israeli Flag Facts: From most accounts, the Magen David was originally chosen on the flag of the Jewish community of Prague in the middle ages for decorative purposes. It was basically just a star with no meaning to it. There is a custom used for the Israeli national flag's flagpole. The flag pole is painted blue, about one third of the way up the pole, and white at the top section.

Italy

Italian Flag Meaning: The Italian flag is based on the design of the French flag. There are different accounts explaining the meaning and history of the green, white and red colors. One account states that the colors of the Italian flag may have been based on military uniforms from Milan. Another one suggests Napoleon Bonaparte replaced the blue of the French flag with green because he liked the color.

Italian Flag History: The current Italian flag was adopted on June 19, 1946. The Italian tricolor flag was first used to represent the French controlled Lombardy region of northern Italy in 1796 and then used by Napoleon Bonaparte's Cisalpine Republic in 1797. In 1848, the King of Sardinia reintroduced the Italian flag incorporating his coat of arms, for all the areas of the country that were under his control. When the Italian Kingdom was established in 1861, it adopted the Italian flag with the royal coat of arms as the national flag to represent a united Italy. The arms were removed from the Italian flag in 1946 when the monarchy was abolished.

Italian Flag Facts: Umberto Bossi, the leader of the anti-European Northern League party, was handed a 16-month suspended sentence for referring to the Italian flag as toilet paper in 1997. A judge convicted the then 59-year-old politician of contempt and sentenced him to 16 months in prison but also suspended the term, meaning Bossi didn't have to go to jail.

 


Jamaica

Jamaican Flag Meaning: The Jamaican flag is symbolized by the motto: 'Hardships there are but the land is green and the sun shineth'. The black triangles represent the adversity Jamaica has overcome and for hardships it may have in the future. The green triangles represent hope and agriculture and the golden saltire (diagonal cross) stands for the mineral wealth of Jamaica and sunlight.

Jamaican Flag History: The Jamaican flag was adopted on August 6, 1962 after gaining independence from the Federation of the West Indies. Jamaica had previously gained independence from Britain and joined the Federation in 1958.

Jamaican Flag Facts: The original design for the Jamaican flag was a horizontal striped pattern with the same colors as the current flag, but it was rejected because of its similarity to the then flag of Tanganyika which is now part of Tanzania. The original design for the Jamaican flag was a horizontal striped pattern with the same colors as the current flag, but it was rejected because of its similarity to the then flag of Tanganyika which is now part of Tanzania.

Japan

Japanese Flag Meaning: The circle in the middle of the flag represents the sun. Japan's name translates to "The land of the rising sun." The white represents honesty and purity and the red disc is a sun symbol meaning brightness, sincerity and warmth.

Japanese Flag History: The current Japanese flag was adopted on August 13, 1999. The symbol in the flag is the state emblem and has been the symbol of Japan for centuries. The Japanese flag initially became the country's national flag in 1868. The Japanese flag was modified slightly by new legislation in 1999. Legend says its origins lie in the days of Mongol invasions of Japan in the 13th century, when a Buddhist priest offered the sun disc flag to the Emperor of Japan, who was considered a descendant of the sun goddess Amaterasu.

Japanese Flag Facts: The national flag of Japan is known as the 'Nisshohki' or 'Hinomaru' which means 'sun disc' in Japanese. The sun disc symbol is known to have been displayed on folding fans used by samurai in the 12th century.

Jersey

Jersey Flag Meaning: The cross, which is referred to as a St. Patrick's Cross, symbolizes Jersey's link to Britain. The Cross is incorporated into the British Union Jack flag.

Jersey Flag History: The Jersey flag was adopted on June 12, 1979 and first officially hoisted on April 1, 1981. Jersey is a British Crown Dependency. Jersey's previous flag was the cross without the coat of arms.

Jersey Flag Facts: A traditional belief to the history of the Jersey flag states that Jersey, along with the other Channel Islands, was granted neutrality by Papal Bull during periods of war between England and France. Since Jersey was able to trade freely with both countries, Jersey ships needed to differentiate themselves from English ships so they rotated the St. George's Cross of the English flag to form a 'saltire' (diagonal cross).

Jordan

Jordan Flag Meaning: It is often believed the seven-pointed star represents the first seven verses of the Koran, which is the Islamic holy book. The official website of King Hussein (1953-1999) states: The Jordan flag symbolizes the Kingdom's roots in the Great Arab Revolt of 1916, as it is adapted from the revolt banner. The black, white and green bands represent the Arab Abbasid, Umayyad and Fatimid dynasties respectively, while the crimson triangle joining the bands represents the Hashemite dynasty. The seven-pointed Islamic star set in the center of the crimson triangle represents the unity of Arab peoples in Jordan.

Jordan Flag History: The Jordan flag was adopted on April 16, 1928. Jordan received independence from British administration by the League of Nations on May 25, 1946. Jordan was mandated to Britain in 1922. The same Jordan flag as today was used from 1921 to 1928, without the star on it. A star was introduced in 1928.

Jordan Flag Facts: Before 1916, Jordan was a part of the Ottoman Empire and the country's flag was similar to the flag of Turkey.

 


Kazakhstan

Kazakhstan Flag Meaning: The pattern on the flag represents the artistic and cultural traditions of the old Khanate and Kazakh people. The light blue symbolizes the various Turkic peoples who make up today's population of the country - including the Tatars, Mongols, Uyghurs and others. The blue has a religious significance, representing the Sky God to many of these people. A modern interpretation states the blue background stands for Kazakhstan's broad skies, and for freedom. The steppe eagle and the sun represent freedom and the flight toward greater heights and fulfillment of aspiration.

Kazakhstan Flag History: The Kazakhstan flag was adopted on June 4, 1992. Kazakhstan gained independence from the Soviet Union on December 16, 1991.

Kazakhstan Flag Facts: The original Kazakhstan flag that was adopted in 1992 had a red ornament but was soon changed to gold.

Kenya

Kenyan Flag Meaning: The black stripe represents the African people; while the red stands for the struggle for independence. The green represents Kenya's agriculture and natural resources. The thin white stripes symbolize peace and unity. The central emblem represents Kenya's fight for freedom and their preparedness to defend that freedom.

Kenyan Flag History: The Kenyan flag was adopted on December 12, 1963, after gaining independence from Britain. The Kenyan flag is based on the flag of the Kenyan African National Union (KANU), the party which led the campaign for Kenya's independence. The country changed its name from the Dominion of Kenya to the Republic of Kenya in 1964.

Kenyan Flag Facts: Since the Kenyan flag is based on the KANU Party, who has lost power, it's possible a new Kenyan flag may be introduced in the future.

Kiribati

Kiribati Flag Meaning: The image of the bird on the Kiribati flag represents authority, freedom and command of the sea. The sun rising over the red sky represents the equator and the blue and white wavy lines symbolize the Pacific Ocean. The 17 rays of the sun also represent the 16 islands and Banaba (former Ocean Island). The Kiribati flag's image represents Kiribati's geographical location as the islands spread out over the equator for over 4000 kilometers and cover over two million square kilometers of the Pacific Ocean.

Kiribati Flag History: The Kiribati flag was adopted on July 12, 1979, when the country gained independence from Britain. Kiribati was formerly named the Gilbert Islands. The Kiribati flag is derived from a banner of the coat of arms that was given to the country in 1937. The emblem was designed in 1932. Interesting

Kiribati Flag Facts: The Kiribati flag is technically called a heraldic banner, because it is derived from the shield of the national coat of arms.

Kuwait

Kuwait Flag Meaning: Red, white, black and green are referred to as pan-Arab colors and have been linked to the Arab people and Islamic faith for centuries. The colors on the Kuwait flag represent Arab unity and independence and are used in the flags of many countries in the region. The green stripe represents the fertility of Arab nations and the black represents the defeat of enemies. The red stands for the blood of the defeated enemy and white symbolizes honor and purity.

Kuwait Flag History: The Kuwait flag was adopted on September 7, 1961, after Kuwait gaining independence from Britain on June 19, 1961. The Kuwait flag was officially hoisted on November 24, 1961. The flag was replaced after Kuwait was invaded by Iraq in August 1990, and was restored when Kuwait was liberated in February 1991. The design of the Kuwait flag is believed to be based on the Arab Revolt Flag of 1916, which was used as a symbol of Arab nationalism during liberation struggles against Ottoman (Turkish) rule.

Kuwait Flag Facts: Up until 1961 the flag of Kuwait was always based on a red background. Kuwait has used 24 different flags since 1714.

Kyrgyzstan

Kyrgyzstan Flag Meaning: The sun represents light, infinite nobility and eternity. The red background is believed to be the color of the national hero Manas the Noble, who united the 40 tribes of Kyrgyzstan, which are represented by the 40 rays emanating from the sun symbol.

Kyrgyzstan Flag History: The Kyrgyzstan flag was adopted on March 3, 1992, making it one of the world's newest flags. Kyrgyzstan gained independence from the Soviet Union on August 31, 1991.

Kyrgyzstan Flag Facts: In 2001 the Tax Service of Kyrgyzstan was given its own flag by the government.

 


Laos

Laotian Flag Meaning: The Red stripes represent the blood shed in the country's fight for independence. The blue stands for Laos' wealth and prosperity and the white symbolizes unity and justice. Another interpretation of the Laotian flag states the white circle symbolizes the full moon over the blue Mekong River, which runs through and alongside the majority of Laos.

Laotian Flag History: The Laotian flag was adopted on December 2, 1975. The Laotian flag is based on the flag of the Lao Patriotic Front, which is usually referred to as the Pathet Lao, outside of Laos. Pathet Lao was a communist nationalist movement that fought for Laotian independence. In 1975 the Pathet Lao took over control of the Laotian government and abolished the country's monarchy. They set up a communist administration and changed the country's name to the Lao People's Democratic Republic and officially adopted the current national flag. Laos gained independence form France on July 19, 1949.

Laotian Flag Facts: The flag of Laos is one of the few communist-style flags that doesn't feature a star on it.

Latvia

Latvian Flag Meaning: Dr. Karlis Ulmanis, the last President of Latvia before the Soviet invasion in 1940 described the meaning of the Latvian flag as this: White stands for right and truth, the honor of free citizens and trustworthiness. But the maroon/red reminds us of the blood that has been shed in the recent past. It has been shed at all times in the remote past and we are ready to offer it again for freedom and independence, for our nation and country.

Latvian Flag History: The current Latvian flag was adopted on February 27, 1990. This Latvian flag was originally used by the independent state of Latvia from 1918 to 1940, when the USSR again took over the country and banned use of the flag. Latvia regained independence from the Soviet Union on August 21, 1991.

Latvian Flag Facts: The Latvian flag is reported to date back to a military unit in 1279, which would make it one of the oldest national flags in the world.

 

Lebanon

Lebanese Flag Meaning: The cedar tree is a prominent feature of the Lebanese flag. It has been used as a symbol by the Maronite Christians of Lebanon since the 18th and 19th centuries. The tree represents peace, immortality and tolerance. The red stripes symbolize martyrdom and self-sacrifice, and the white represents the snow-capped peaks of Lebanon's mountains. Historically, red and white have symbolized the Kayssites (red) and the Yemmenites (white), who were opposing clans within the Lebanese territory between 634 and 1711.

Lebanese Flag History: The Lebanese flag was adopted on December 7, 1943 after gaining independence on November 22, 1943. Lebanon was created by France in 1920 and the Lebanese flag is based on the French tricolor. The cedar tree was placed in the white of the French flag. When Lebanon claimed independence from France they got rid of the French blue and changed the stripes from vertical to horizontal. A green cedar tree on a white base was used as a Lebanese flag after Ottoman (Turkish) rule came to an end in the region at the end of the First World War, in 1918.

Lebanese Flag Facts: Some flag manufacturers have made the cedar tree green and brown, but Lebanon's constitution states that the tree should be green only.

Lesotho

Lesotho Flag Meaning: The new Lesotho flag retained elements of the original Lesotho flag. It maintained the symbolic use of the national motto from the country's coat of arms: "Khotso-Pula-Nala", which means "Peace-Rain-Plenty". The upper white section of the Lesotho flag represents peace, the blue stripe symbolizes rain and water, and the green section stands for the country's fertile agricultural land. The shield, supported by a spear on the left, a bludgeon on the right and a plumed spine in the centre, symbolizes Lesotho's willingness to defend its independence.

Lesotho Flag History: The Lesotho flag was adopted on January 19, 1987, after a military coup, replacing the flag that was adopted when Lesotho gained independence from Britain on October 4, 1966. The country also changed its name from Basutoland on this date.

Lesotho Flag Facts: It is believed that Lesotho's old flag wasn't used after the coup because it identified too closely with the deposed Basotho National Party BNP, who had led the country since independence and incorporated its colors of red, white, blue and green.

Liberia

Liberian Flag Meaning: The 11 stripes symbolize the 11 signatories of the Liberian declaration of independence. The red and white colors symbolize courage and moral excellence. The white star represents the freedom the ex-slaves were given and the blue square represents the African mainland.

Liberian Flag History: The Liberian flag was adopted on July 26, 1847 after gaining independence. Liberia was settled by freed American slaves in the early 1800s, naming their country for liberty itself. The country was originally recognized as a colony of the USA. For this reason, the Liberian flag is very similar to the flag of the United States of America.

Liberian Flag Facts: The Liberian flag is seen on many ships around the world, as Liberia offers registration under its flag. Shipping companies do this to avoid taxes and restrictions that other countries enforce. It is estimated that about 1600 ships fly the Liberian flag as a flag of convenience. This brings in much of the country's revenue.

Libya

Libyan Flag Meaning: Green is the national color of Libya as well as a symbol of devotion to Islam. Green also represents Libyan President Muammar al Qaddafi's 'Green Revolution' - an intention to turn Libya into a wealthy agricultural nation.

Libyan Flag History: The Libyan flag was adopted on November 19, 1977, after leaving the Federation of Arabs Republic, which consisted of Libya, Egypt and Syria. The previous flag of Libya consisted of red, white and black horizontal stripes. Libya gained independence from Italy on December 24, 1951.

Libyan Flag Facts: The Libyan flag is the only national flag in the world that is simply one color with nothing else on it. The term to explain the one-color flag is 'monochromatic'.

Liechtenstein

Liechtenstein Flag Meaning: In 1937, the head of the government, Joseph Hoop, described the meaning of Liechtenstein's flag as this: Blue is the color of a radiant sky, red the color of the embers in the fireplace during evening gatherings; gold of the crown shows that our people, our country and our princely House are united in heart and spirit. Blue and red are the country's national colors. The gold crown, outlined in black, is the symbol of Princely authority and symbolizes the bond between Liechtenstein's prince, the state and the people.

Liechtenstein Flag History: The current Liechtenstein flag was adopted on September 18, 1982. The Liechtenstein flag's colors are likely derived from the livery colors of Liechtenstein's royal household in the 18th century. A plain horizontally divided blue over red flag was adopted as part of a new constitution on the October 5, 1921. The crown was added to the Liechtenstein flag in 1937, after it was discovered by Liechtenstein's team at the 1936 Olympics that the country's flag was identical to the flag of Haiti. The design of the crown was slightly modified in 1982. Liechtenstein was created in 1719 and became an independent principality in 1866.

Liechtenstein Flag Facts: Previous to the blue and red flag in 1921, Liechtenstein had a yellow over red colored flag.

Lithuania

Liechtenstein Flag Meaning: In 1937, the head of the government, Joseph Hoop, described the meaning of Liechtenstein's flag as this: Blue is the color of a radiant sky, red the color of the embers in the fireplace during evening gatherings; gold of the crown shows that our people, our country and our princely House are united in heart and spirit. Blue and red are the country's national colors. The gold crown, outlined in black, is the symbol of Princely authority and symbolizes the bond between Liechtenstein's prince, the state and the people.

Liechtenstein Flag History: The current Liechtenstein flag was adopted on September 18, 1982. The Liechtenstein flag's colors are likely derived from the livery colors of Liechtenstein's royal household in the 18th century. A plain horizontally divided blue over red flag was adopted as part of a new constitution on the October 5, 1921. The crown was added to the Liechtenstein flag in 1937, after it was discovered by Liechtenstein's team at the 1936 Olympics that the country's flag was identical to the flag of Haiti. The design of the crown was slightly modified in 1982. Liechtenstein was created in 1719 and became an independent principality in 1866.

Liechtenstein Flag Facts: Previous to the blue and red flag in 1921, Liechtenstein had a yellow over red colored flag.

Luxembourg

Luxembourg Flag Meaning: The colors of the Luxembourg flag take their origin from the 13th century coat of arms of the Grand Duke of Luxembourg, Count Henry VI. The coat of arms featured a red lion on a field of striped white and blue lines. The coat of arms of Luxembourg dates back to medieval times.

Luxembourg Flag History: The Luxembourg flag was adopted on June 23, 1972. The Luxembourg flag was influenced by the French flag. Luxembourg declared independence from Germany in 1835 and designed a horizontal flag in 1845.

Luxembourg Flag Facts: The Luxembourg flag is similar to the flag of the Netherlands, which uses a darker shade of blue. The similarity, however, is just a coincidence, there's no historical connection.

 


Macau

Macau Flag Meaning: There is no official meaning to the Macau flag.

Macau Flag History: The Macau flag was adopted on March 31, 1993 before the country's sovereignty was given back to China from the Portuguese on December 20, 1999. Macau was officially founded as a Portuguese colony in 1557, making it the first European settlement in the Far East. Macau is now run as a special administrative Region of the People's Republic of China. The Macau flag is one of the world's newest flags. Prior to the handover by the Portuguese, Macau used both the Portuguese national flag and a special Macau flag with the arms of the colony on it.

Macau Flag Facts: Xiao Hong, a professor of arts and crafts, designed the Macau flag which was selected to represent Macao after its re-integration into China. His entry was one of over 1,000 considered for the new flag. He designed the Macau flag after reading a 600-word tourist guide on Macao. Hong didn't visit Macau until three years after the flag was adopted.

Macedonia

Macedonian Flag Meaning: The sun design is a simplified version of the Star of Vergina, which appeared on Macedonia's former national flag. Red has been a significant color throughout the history of Macedonian flags. The sun also represents "the new sun of liberty", which is mentioned in the country's national anthem.

Macedonian Flag History: The Macedonian flag was adopted on October 5, 1995, making it one of the world's newest flags. Macedonia gained independence from Yugoslavia on September 8, 1991. When Macedonia was part of Yugoslavia the flag was red with a red star in the top left corner. Greece objected to the new republic calling itself Macedonia and to the design of the new national flag. Greece already had a province called Macedonia and feared Macedonia had intentions to extend its border to include Greek Macedonia. Greece also objected to the use of Alexander the Great's Star of Vergina, which appeared on Macedonia's original flag (from 1991 to 95) as Greeks believed the symbol culturally belonged to Greece and wasn't a Slavic symbol. Macedonia then removed the star from their flag.

Macedonian Flag Facts: According to a 1997 Macedonian law, flags of foreign countries cannot be flown from public buildings except on certain public and religious holidays when they may be flown alongside the Macedonian flag. This law affects first and foremost the use of the Albanian flag, which was used on municipal buildings in towns of Western Macedonia. The law was followed by police action against municipal authorities in the towns of Tetovo and Gostivar, where the Albanian flag was removed from the town halls. This led to protests and demonstrations and finally resulted in rioting. Three people died and more than 50 were injured with 300-400 people being detained or arrested (including the mayor of Gostivar). On July 12, 1997, demonstrators, many of them Albanians from Macedonia, burned the Macedonian flag in the Albanian capital of Tirana.

 

Madagascar

Madagascar Flag Meaning: One theory on the Madagascar flag's meaning states that the colors of the Madagascar flag represent Madagascar's history, yearning for independence, and traditional classes. Red and white were the colors of the Merina kingdom, which fell to France in 1896. The colors were used in the flag of Queen Ranavalona III, the last Merina monarch. They also represent the ethnic origins of the Malagasy people in Southeast Asia, and are shared by the flag of Indonesia. Green was the color of the Hova, a class of commoners who played a significant role in the independence movement. The modern day interpretation of the Madagascar flag colors believes that red standing for sovereignty, white represents purity and green means hope.

Madagascar Flag History: The Madagascar flag was adopted on October 14, 1958. Madagascar gained independence from France on June 26, 1960.

Madagascar Flag Facts: Although Madagascar officially changed its name under a new constitution in 1975, the Madagascar flag remained the same.

Malawi

Malawi Flag Meaning: The Malawi flag features a black stripe that represents the people of Africa. The color red stands for the blood spilt in Malawi's struggle for independence; while the color green symbolizes the country's vegetation. The rising sun represents the dawn of freedom and hope on the African continent.

Malawi Flag History: The Malawi flag was adopted on July 6, 1964, the day it gained independence from Britain. From the late 19th century until independence, Malawi was a British protectorate called Nyasaland. The Malawi flag is based on the banner adopted by the Malawi Congress Party which was the party that led the campaign for independence and whose leader became the first prime minister of Malawi.

Malawi Flag Facts: In late 1998, there were rumors that Malawi was going to change its flag because it was based on the former flag of the Malawi Congress Party, which was the country's main opposition and former ruling party.

Malaysia

Malaysian Flag Meaning: The 14 stripes and points of the star represent the 13 member states of the Malaysian federation and the Federal District of Kuala Lumpur. They represent equal status in the federation of the states and in the federal government. The crescent and star imagery represent Islam, and yellow is a traditional royal color. The blue square stands for unity of the Malaysian people. The blue was originally adopted from the British Union Jack and represented Malaysia's link to Britain.

Malaysian Flag History: The Malaysian flag was adopted on September 16, 1963. The current Malaysian flag is based on a design adopted in 1950 by the Federation of Malaya, a British protectorate, which would eventually become Malaysia when it gained independence on August 31, 1957. In September 1963 the country united with Singapore and the north Borneo territories of Sabah (formerly North Borneo) and Sarawak to form the Federation of Malaysia. The original flag had 11 stripes and an 11 point star but three more were added to mark the inclusion of the new states. Even though Singapore departed the Federation in 1965, the flag is still used.

Malaysian Flag Facts: On August 31, 1997, Prime Minister Tun Mahathir bin Mohammad named the Malaysian flag Jalur Gemilang, which means "Glorious Stripes". The Malaysian flag is a combination of the United States flag which also has the crescent and star, a traditional symbol of Islam.

Maldives

Maldives Flag Meaning: The red base represents the blood spilled for independence and the nation's sovereignty. The green stands for peace and prosperity as well as the country's wealth of palm trees and the crescent symbolizes the Islamic faith of the island nation.

Maldives Flag History: The Maldives flag was adopted on July 25, 1963. The flag of Maldives was originally a plain red flag. Up until 1949, the crescent pointed towards the left. The country gained independence from Britain on July 16, 1965.

Maldives Flag Facts: The current national and presidential flags of Maldives were introduced officially on July 26, 1968.

Mali

Mali Flag Meaning: The green stripe symbolizes hope, nature and fertility of the land. The yellow represents purity and mineral wealth and red stands for strength and the blood spilt for independence.

Mali Flag History: The Mali flag was adopted on March 1, 1961. Mali gained independence from France on September 22, 1960. The first flag of Mali was adopted on April 4, 1959, when French Sudan and Senegal formed the Mali Federation. Senegal left in August, 1960 and the flag was changed in 1961. The flag of Senegal is similar to Mali's except it has a star in the middle of it. The flags were based on the French flag, except Pan African colors were used. The colors were also those of the African Democratic Rally which was the political party who led the fight for independence.

Mali Flag Facts: A 'kanaga' symbol was used on the first Mali flag, until it was abolished in 1961. The symbol is a black human-like image and it was removed because of pressure from Muslims who do not approve of making images in the human form.

Malta

Maltese Flag Meaning: King George VI of Great Britain awarded the George Cross, a military award for gallantry, to Malta in 1942, in recognition of Maltese heroism during the early years of World War II.

Maltese Flag History: The Maltese flag was adopted on September 21, 1964, the day Malta gained independence from Britain. The vertical white and red base of the Maltese flag has its official origins in the badge of the Knights of St John of Jerusalem, who ruled Malta from 1530 to 1798. The colors have also been attributed, without any historical evidence, to Count Roger I, who seized the island from the Muslims in 1090.

Maltese Flag Facts: There is often a reference to the "Maltese Cross" this, however, is in reference to Malta's merchant flag which has a different shaped cross than the national flag which has a King George Cross on it.

Marshall

Marshall Islands Flag Meaning: The Marshall Islands' flag represents the country's geographical position, which is just north of the equator (the stripes) in the central north-west Pacific Ocean (the blue field), slightly west of the international dateline (the star is off center towards the left of the flag). The blue represents the Pacific Ocean. Orange is a traditional color of the Marshall Islands, symbolizing bravery and wealth. The color white represents peace and brightness. The orange and white stripes represent the two main chains of the Marshall Islands, the Ralik chain (orange) and the Ratak chain (white). The expanding width of the stripes represents growth and vitality of the country. The star represents each of the 24 municipalities of the Marshall Islands. The four longer points represent the capital city of Majuro, and the administrative districts of Kwajalein, Wotji and Jaluit. The longer points also form a cross and symbolize the Christian faith of the country.

Marshall Islands Flag History: The Marshall Islands flag was adopted on May 1, 1979. The Marshall Islands gained independence from the Trust Territory of the Pacific Islands on October 21, 1986.

Marshall Islands Flag Facts: The President's wife, Emlain Kabua, designed the Marshall Islands flag and it was chosen from among 50 other flag designs.

Mauritania

Mauritanian Islands Flag Meaning: The green and gold in the Mauritanian Islands' flag are considered Pan-African colors. Green also symbolizes Islam, and the gold also represents the sands of the Sahara desert. The crescent and star are also symbols of Islam, which is the major religion in Mauritania.

Mauritanian Islands Flag History: The Mauritanian flag was adopted on April 1, 1959, just before gaining independence from France on November 28, 1960.

Mauritanian Flag Facts: Rumor has it that the Mauritanian flag was selected, and perhaps also designed, personally by the former president of Mauritania, Mukthar Ould Dada.

Mauritius

Mauritius Islands Flag Meaning: The red stripe represents the country's struggle for independence; the blue symbolizes the Indian Ocean, which surrounds the island nation; the yellow stands for a bright future for Mauritius following its independence; and the green represents the evergreen vegetation of the land and its agriculture.

Mauritius Islands Flag History: The Mauritius flag was adopted on January 9, 1968 just before the country gained independence from Britain on March 12, 1968.

Mauritius Flag Facts: Before independence, the flags of Mauritius featured the British Union Jack on them.

Mexico

Mexican Flag Meaning: The stripes on Mexico's flag are believed to represent the following: the green stripe represents hope; the white represents symbolizes religion; and the red represents independence and the unity of the nation. Mexico's coat of arms depicts an ancient Aztec legend that tells a tale of God telling a band of wandering Aztec Indians that when they came across an eagle eating a snake while perched on a nopal cactus growing out of a rock surrounded by water, they were to create their home. This spot eventually became Mexico City. This scenario with the eagle eating a snake is depicted on the Mexican coat of arms.

Mexican Flag History: The current Mexican flag was adopted on September 16, 1968. Mexico gained independence from Spain on September 21, 1821, and at that time introduced a basic flag of green, white and red diagonal stripes. The Mexican coat of arms - which represents the 1325 founding of the Aztec capital Tenochtitlán (on the site occupied by Mexico's modern capital, Mexico City) - was added in 1823. The coat of arms has changed several times since then and this has resulted in several modifications to the Mexican flag.

Mexican Flag Facts: In Mexico the flag is often called the Bandera Nacional.

Micronesia

Micronesian Flag Meaning: The blue base symbolizes the Pacific Ocean and the stars represent the four states that make up the Federated States of Micronesia. The design of the Micronesia flag has its roots linked to the flag of the former Trust Territory of the Pacific Islands. The colors of that flag were adopted from the flag of the United Nations.

Micronesian Flag History: The Micronesia flag was adopted on November 30, 1978. Micronesia became independent from the Trust Territory of the Pacific Islands on November 3, 1986. The Territory was created in 1947. The Micronesia flag has been in use since 1962, but the number of stars has varied depending on the number of islands in the federation.

Micronesian Flag Facts: The flag of Micronesia remained unchanged since the country achieved independence in 1986. The Micronesia flag has been in use since 1962.

Moldova

Moldavian Flag Meaning: The Moldavian flag was based on the Romanian national flag and represents Moldova's shared heritage with Romania. The coat of arms consists of the eagle of Walachia holding an Orthodox Christian cross in its beak and an olive branch in one talon, with the scepter of Michael the Brave of Walachia in the other. Walachia is a historic region of Eastern Europe.

Moldavian Flag History: The Moldavian flag was and adopted on May 12, 1990. Moldova gained independence from the Soviet Union on August 27, 1991. Romania/Moldova adopted a flag in the three colors during the revolutions of 1848 which drew inspiration from the French revolution.

Moldavian Flag Facts: Moldova was a part of Romania until the Second World War, and the Moldovan coat of arms is the only difference between the flag of Moldova and the Romanian flag.

Monaco

Monaco Flag Meaning: Red and white were the heraldic colors of the ruling Grimaldi family. The colors appear as a diamond shaped pattern on the shield of the family's coat of arms.

Monaco Flag History: The Monaco flag was adopted on April 4, 1881, making it one of the world's oldest flags. Monaco gained independence from Italy on January 8, 1297, when the territory was acquired by the house of Grimaldi, a family of Italian origin, who established it as a principality. The Principality, with an area of 151 hectares, is the second smallest sovereign state in the world with the smallest being the Vatican.

Monaco Flag Facts: The flag of Monaco is identical to the flag of Indonesia other than its size. The flag of Poland is also similar but with the color scheme reversed. Flags that are designed with a proportion of 4:5 are almost square in shape.

Mongolia

Mongolian Flag Meaning: Blue is a traditional Mongolian color and it represents the sky. The red stripes initially represented Mongolia's socialist beliefs, but a modern interpretation means liberty and progress. The soyombo is a national emblem which contains individual symbolism within it. The fire at the top of it represents prosperity, contentment and regeneration. The three flames represent the past, present and future. The sun and moon symbolize the universe and are believed by Mongolians to be the mother (sun) and father (moon) of their nation. The triangles pointing at the ground are arrowheads and represent Mongolian's willingness to defend their nation. The horizontal rectangles stand for honesty, justice and righteousness. The middle circle can be interpreted as the Buddhist yin and yang symbol, which represents complementary opposite forces existing together in the universe - such as positive and negative, male and female, passive and active, fire and water, etc. The circle can also be interpreted as two fish that never close their eyes, representing the watchfulness and vigilance of Mongolians. The vertical rectangles represent pillars which symbolize strength, resolve and hardness.

Mongolian Flag History: The current Mongolian flag was adopted on February 12, 1992. The flag is similar to the one used in 1949, except for the removal of a star on the current version. Mongolia received independence from China on July 11, 1921. Mongolia introduced the basic design of the flag in 1940.

Mongolian Flag Facts: The soyombo was adopted as the official symbol of the Mongolian People's Republic by the first People's Great Khural in 1924.

Morocco

Moroccan Flag Meaning: Green and red are traditional colors of Islam, which is Morocco's official religion. Red is also the color of the reigning Moroccan dynasty. The Seal of Solomon represents the link between God and the nation.

Moroccan Flag History: The Moroccan flag was adopted on November 17, 1915. Morocco gained independence from France on March 2, 1956. The 'Seal of Solomon' was added to the red flag, previously used by the reigning Moroccan dynasty since the 17th century, to differentiate Morocco's flag from similar red flags of other nations.

Moroccan Flag Facts: The Moroccan flag remained unchanged when the sultanate of Morocco was restored by the two colonial rulers of France and Spain, and independence was granted in 1956. A year later, the sultan became a king and Morocco became a kingdom.

Mozambique

Mozambique Flag Meaning: The red stripe represents the Mozambique's struggle for independence. The green symbolizes the land. The black represents the African continent and yellow stands for the mineral wealth of the nation. The yellow star represents the socialist beliefs of the country. The book represents education and the hoe represents the peasants and agriculture. The rifle represents the nation's determination to defend its freedom.

Mozambique Flag History: The Mozambique flag was adopted on May 1, 1983. Mozambique gained independence from Portugal on June 25, 1975. The current Mozambique flag is based on the flag of Frelimo (the Mozambique Liberation Front), the organization which led the campaign for independence. The Frelimo flag was virtually the same as the current Mozambique flag but without the emblem on it. It was used briefly as the transitional flag when the leader of Frelimo became the first president of an independent Mozambique in 1975.

Mozambique Flag Facts: The flag of Mozambique is the only one in the world to feature a rifle, as it has an AK47 on it. A contest was held to design a new flag of Mozambique in September 1999 and 119 entries were received. A winner was picked, but a new Mozambique flag has never materialized.

Myanmar

Myanmar Flag Meaning: The Blue represents peace and endurance. The red symbolizes courage and gallantry, and the white stands for purity and honor. Together, the cogwheel and ears of rice represent the country's industry and agriculture, as well as the union of the workers and the peasant class. The 14 stars above the 14 cogs represent the 14 states that form the Union of Myanmar.

Myanmar Flag History: The Myanmar flag was adopted on January 3, 1974, the same year Burma became the Socialist Republic of the Burmese Federation. Since then the state has changed its name, but not its flag. Myanmar adopted the basic design of its national flag after gaining independence from Britain on January 4, 1948. The original Myanmar flag had a red base and a blue square with a large white star surrounded by five smaller stars. The stars were replaced with the current emblem in 1974.

Myanmar Flag Facts: The country of Myanmar has changed its name twice since the adoption of the current flag, but never changed its flag.


Namibia

Namibian Flag Meaning: The chairman of Namibia's National Symbols Sub-committee described the Namibia flag as follows: Red - represents Namibia's most important resource, its people. It refers to their heroism and their determination to build a future of equal opportunity for all; White - refers to peace and unity Green - symbolizes vegetation and agricultural resources. Blue - represents the clear Namibian sky and the Atlantic Ocean, the country's precious water resources and rain; and the golden-yellow sun represents life and energy.

Namibian Flag History: The Namibian flag was adopted on March 21, 1990 when Namibia, then known as South West Africa, gained independence from South Africa. The flag's main colors are the same as the 1971 flag of SWAPO (South West African People's Organization), the most important liberation movement. That flag consists of horizontal stripes of blue-red-green, the most important colors of the Ovambos, the largest ethnic population in Namibia.

Namibian Flag Facts: The Namibian flag was chosen by a committee which had been set up to provide technical advice on new national symbols. The public was requested to enter designs and 835 of them were sent in.

Nauru

Nauru Flag Meaning: The Nauru flag represents the country's geographical position in the world. Nauru is represented by the star and it is just south (26 miles) of the equator (the yellow stripe) in the central Pacific Ocean (the blue base), slightly west of the international dateline (the star is off centered towards the left of the flag). The 12 points on the star symbolize Nauru's 12 original tribes.

Nauru Flag History: The Nauru flag was adopted on January 31, 1968, after Nauru gained independence from a United Nations trusteeship territory administered jointly by Australia, New Zealand and Great Britain.

Nauru Flag Facts: Because the flag of Nauru is linked with the island's geographical location, it would be surprising if there was a flag change in the fore coming years.

Nepal

Nepalese Flag Meaning: The crimson/red color is a traditional Nepalese color and the blue outlined edge represents the country's peaceful nature. The two triangular portions of the Nepalese flag represent the Himalayan Mountains and the two main religions of the nation - which are Buddhism and Hinduism. The moon and sun originally represented the royal family and the prime minister's family, the Rana family. They also represent the country's desire to live as long as the sun and moon.

Nepalese Flag History: The current Nepalese flag was adopted on December 12, 1962. The individual flags that make up the national flag had been used during the past two centuries and the double flag has been in use since the 19th century.

Nepalese Flag Facts: The flag of Nepal is the only non-rectangular national flag in the world. It's believed the flag originated in the late 19th century from two triangular flags that were placed one above the other.

Netherlands Antilles

Netherlands Antilles Flag Meaning: The five stars represent the five main islands of the Antilles which are Bonaire, Curaçao, Saba, St. Eustatius, and St. Maarten. The red, white and blue colors are linked to the flag of the Netherlands as the Antilles are a part of the Kingdom of the Netherlands.

Netherlands Antilles Flag History: The Netherlands Antilles flag was adopted on January 1, 1986. The first flag was adopted on November 19, 1959 and had six stars. One star was dropped from the flag in 1986 because the island of Aruba left the Antilles.

Netherlands Antilles Flag Facts: Some more of the islands making up the Antilles may eventually leave the group. St. Maarten was supposed to become a new country within the Kingdom of the Netherlands and a new flag for the Antilles was proposed, however no change had occurred as of October 2004.

Netherlands

Netherlands Flag Meaning: The red stripe which was originally orange, along with the white and blue stripes, are based on the heraldic colors (coat of arms) of Prince William of Orange, who led the fight for Dutch independence.

Netherlands Flag History: The Netherlands flag was adopted on February 19, 1937. The Netherlands flag was originally orange, white and blue and featured up to nine stripes. The Netherlands flag is nicknamed the 'Prince's Flag' and was based on the heraldic colors (coat of arms) of Prince William of Orange, who led the campaign for independence against Spanish rule in 1568. The Netherlands independence was finally recognized by Spain in 1648. The orange-white-blue flag first appeared around the early 1570s. In the early to mid-17th century, the orange stripe was changed to red but the reason is unclear. One theory is because red is more visible than orange when viewed from a distance. Red, white and blue were officially announced as the colors of the flag in 1796. The flag was banned for a short period at the turn of the 19th century after France occupied the Netherlands. The Netherlands was again independent in 1813 and the flag was reinstated.

Netherlands Flag Facts: The Netherlands flag influenced the design of the Russian flag when Peter the Great, Tsar of Russia, visited the Netherlands in the 17th century to observe the country's shipping industry. When he returned to Russia he assembled his own shipping fleet and designed a white, blue and red flag in honor of the Netherlands. That flag eventually became the state flag of Russia. The Russian flag would then inspire the flags of many other Slavic nations, and the colors became known as the pan-Slavic colors.

New-zealand

New Zealand Antilles Flag Meaning: The Union Jack represents New Zealand's British Commonwealth heritage. The Blue background symbolizes the sea and sky. The four stars symbolizing the constellation 'the Southern Cross', represent the stars Alpha, Beta, Gamma and Delta. The Southern Cross is a prominent constellation in the southern hemisphere, and represents New Zealand's geographical position to the rest of the world.

New Zealand Antilles Flag History: The New Zealand flag was adopted on June 12, 1902 but the flag was actually introduced in 1869. New Zealand gained independence from Britain on September 26, 1907. Until 1865, New Zealand used the British Union Jack as its flag. In 1867 a flag similar to the current one was introduced with the letters NZ on it. The letters were then replaced by the four stars in 1869.

New Zealand Antilles Flag Facts: There have been several attempts to change the flag of New Zealand since 1973, however, by New Zealand law, a 65 per cent majority vote is needed to change the New Zealand flag. So far this has not happened as most people oppose changing New Zealand's flag.

Nicaragua

Nicaraguan Flag Meaning: The colors of the Nicaraguan flag originate from the flag of the former federation of the United Provinces of Central America. The two blue stripes represented the Pacific Ocean and Caribbean Sea; while white symbolizes peace. A modern interpretation indicates that the color blue symbolizes justice and loyalty; while the color white represents virtue and purity. The coat of arms features an equilateral triangle which represents equality. Inside the triangle are five volcanoes, which represent the five members of the federation. The triangle also contains symbols of liberty and peace - represented by a red Phrygian cap, white rays and rainbow.

Nicaraguan Flag History: The Nicaraguan flag was adopted on August 27, 1971. Nicaragua gained independence from Spain in 1821 and joined the United Provinces of Central America but by 1838, the federation began to dissolve and Nicaragua left to become an independent state. Nicaragua still used the blue-white-blue flag until 1854. The flag was re-instated in 1908 with the inclusion of the state coat of arms.

Nicaraguan Flag Facts: The blue-white-blue pattern of the Nicaraguan flag is common to all of the Central American countries. It is a reminder of the United Provinces of Central America. Each of the five member countries found a way to differentiate its flag - for example Costa Rica put a red stripe in the middle, Nicaragua and El Salvador put their coats of arms on their flags, Honduras used five stars, and Guatemala turned the stripes vertically. All of the countries gained independence from Spain together on September 15, 1821.

Niger

Niger Flag Meaning: The orange symbolizes the Sahara Desert, which covers more than half of the country of Niger. White stands for purity and innocence and the green stands for the River Niger, and the lush vegetation and fertile agricultural areas of the country. The orange circle represents the sun and also the readiness of Niger to defend its freedom.

Niger Flag History: The Niger flag was adopted on November 23, 1959. Niger gained independence from France on August 3, 1960.

Niger Flag Facts: The 6:7 proportions of the flag make it almost perfectly square in shape. The neighboring Ivory Coast flies a flag similar to Niger's, except the stripes are vertical. Both Niger and Ivory Coast were French possessions and were closely linked economically.

Nigeria

Nigerian Flag Meaning: The green stripes represent Nigeria's agriculture industry and its lush vegetation. The white stripe represents the desire for peace and unity within the country.

Nigerian Flag History: The Nigerian flag was adopted the same day Nigeria gained independence from Britain on October 1, 1960. A competition was held to choose a new national flag to represent an independent Nigeria. A design by a Nigerian student named Michael Taiwo Akinkunmi was chosen in 1959 from almost 3,000 entries.

Nigerian Flag Facts: When the Nigerian flag is flying, no other flag, emblem or insignia should be placed above the flag. Old or worn out Nigerian flags should never be displayed. When a Nigerian flag becomes soiled, old, torn or mutilated it should be destroyed by burning or any other method of respect. Nigerian law makes deems it an offence for the Nigerian Flag to be improperly used or displayed. Law states that: "Any person who flies or exhibits the National Flag in a defaced or bad condition shall be guilty of an offence against this Ordinance.

Niue

Niue Flag Meaning: The Union Jack represents Niue's ties to Britain and New Zealand, as independence in free association with New Zealand was proclaimed in 1974. The yellow represents the sun above Nuie and the affection the country feels towards New Zealand. The four small stars on the Union Jack represent the Southern Cross constellation and New Zealand. It's the same constellation that appears on New Zealand's flag. The larger star placed on the blue circle represents the independent island of Nuie standing alone, surrounded by the Pacific Ocean.

Niue Flag History: The Niue flag was adopted on October 15, 1975, after the country proclaimed independence in free association with New Zealand in 1974.

Niue Flag Facts: It's rare that a flag such as the Niue flag, which incorporates the British Union Jack, has a base of any color other than blue.

North-Korea

North Korean Flag Meaning: The blue stripes represent sovereignty, peace and friendship and the red represents communism and revolutionary patriotism. The white is a traditional Korean color and stands for purity and the culture of the Korean people. The red star symbolizes the communist philosophy of the country. The white circle is linked to the yin-yang symbol in the flag of South Korea. Before their separation, Korea used the current South Korean flag.

North Korean Flag History: The North Korean flag was adopted on September 8, 1948. The USSR and USA divided Korea in half after World War II, with the USSR occupying the north and the USA occupying the south.

North Korean Flag Facts: Before Korea was divided into two separate states the current South Korean flag was used by the entire country.

Norway

Norwegian Flag Meaning: The colors of the Norwegian flag are believed to have been influenced by the flags of France, the United States and Britain and are considered the colors of liberty and independence. The cross is common to most Scandinavian flags, and represents Norway's link to the other Scandinavian countries.

Norwegian Flag History: The Norwegian flag was first adopted on July 17, 1821 and is based on the Danish flag, with a blue cross placed within the white cross of the Danish flag. Norway was ruled by Denmark from the mid-15th century until 1814, when it joined a union with Sweden until 1905. The Norwegian flag had an emblem representing the Norway-Sweden union from 1844 until 1898, when the government re-introduced the Norwegian flag, minus the Union symbol. A 1905 Norwegian referendum voted overwhelmingly to end the country's union with Sweden.

Norwegian Flag Facts: The flag of 1821 was an idea of Frederik Meltzer's, a Danish Member of Parliament. He got the idea of adding a blue cross to the Danish flag during a session of parliament. The discussion was how the flag could represent Norway's past association with Denmark and its union with Sweden. We can assume the red and white came from the Danish flag and the blue from the Swedish flag. The red, white and blue color combination was appealing to Parliament because it represented the colors of liberty, as in the flags of France, the USA, the United Kingdom and the Netherlands. A rumor that Frederik Meltzer's young son Gerhard created the idea behind the Norwegian flag is false.

 


Oman

Oman Flag Meaning: The red base is taken from Oman's previous flag and represents the reigning Al Bu Said dynasty, which has been ruling Oman since the mid-18th century and also symbolizes the difficulties Oman overcame in its search for independence. The color white historically represents the imam, the Islamic religious leaders of the country and also stands for peace and prosperity. Green is the color of Islam and represents the fertility of the country as well as Al Jabal al Akhdar (the Green Mountains) in the north-east of the country.

Oman Flag History: The Oman flag was adopted on November 18, 1995, after modifications were made to the Oman flag of 1970. A coup d'etat by the son of the ruling Sultan in 1970 resulted in a name change from the Sultanate of Muscat and Oman. At this time, white and green horizontal stripes and the country's emblem were added to Oman's previous entirely red flag.

Oman Flag Facts: The proportions of the Oman flag were changed from 2:3 to 1:2. The basic appearance of the flag remained the same except that the horizontal stripes are now equal in width.

 


Pakistan

Pakistani Flag Meaning: Green is a traditional Islamic color and the crescent and star are also Islamic symbols. The white stripe represents the non-Muslim, minority, religious groups in Pakistan. According to modern meaning, the green represents prosperity; white symbolizes peace; the white crescent represents progress; and the white star represents light and knowledge.

Pakistani Flag History: The Pakistan flag was adopted on August 14, 1947 when the country was formed after the British-ruled Indian sub-continent was divided into two independent states, Pakistan and India. The Pakistan flag is based on one created in 1906; which represented the All-Indian Muslim League - a political organization established to represent the political rights of Muslims in India. That flag had an entirely green base with a white crescent and star in the centre. The flag remained the same when Pakistan produced its first constitution in 1956 and officially became the Islamic Republic of Pakistan. In December 1971, the province of East Pakistan left and became Bangladesh.

Pakistani Flag Facts: A common name for the Pakistani flag is 'subz hilali parcham' which is Urdu for 'green flag with the crescent'.

Palau

Palau Flag Meaning: The blue base symbolizes the political maturity of Palau, and its journey from foreign control to independence. The yellow circle represents the moon, a sign of national unity and, according to Palauan belief, represents the best time for traditional activities, such as fishing, harvesting, planting and festivals.

Palau Flag History: The Palau flag was adopted on January 1, 1981. Palau gained independence from the United States Trust Territory of the Pacific Islands on October 1, 1994. In 1993, Palau entered into a Compact of Free Association with the United States, which provided the nation with economic and defense assistance.

Palau Flag Facts: The Palau National Flag was based on the winning entrant by Mr. Blau Skebong in a 1979 flag competition.

Panama

Panamanian Flag Meaning: The Panamanian flag's colors represent the two political parties of Panama, the Liberals (red) and the Conservatives (blue). The white symbolizes peace between them and the equal division of the colors states that they both govern the country at different times. The colors of the Panamanian flag also have alternative meanings. The blue represents the Pacific Ocean and Caribbean Sea and red stands for the blood spilt for Panama's independence. The blue star represents the civic virtues of purity and honesty and the red star symbolizes the authority of the law. Together they represent loyalty and resilience.

Panamanian Flag History: The current Panamanian flag was adopted on December 20, 1903, and provisionally approved in 1904 by the Constituent Assembly. It was not definitely approved until 1925. Panama was a colony of Spain from the 16th century until 1821, when independence was achieved. After independence from Spain, Panama joined Colombia as one of its provinces. Panama gained independence from Colombia on Nov. 3, 1903, with encouragement and military support from the United States. The U.S. then acquired permission to build the Panama Canal and paid $10 million U.S. and an annual fee of $250 000 per year. The Panama Canal, the land it is built on and the area surrounding it is leased to the U.S. and comes under direct United States control.

Panamanian Flag Facts: The Panamanian flag was designed by Mr. Manuel Amador Jr. and made by his wife Ms. Maria Ossa de Amador. The Panamanian flag is based on the design of the American flag.

Papua-New-Guinea

Papua New Guinea Flag Meaning: Black, red and yellow are traditional colors which are found in Papua New Guinean art and clothing. The yellow bird, a stylized bird of paradise, is culturally significant to Papua New Guineans and in full flight it represents freedom and the country's birth as an independent nation. The five stars symbolize the constellation the Southern Cross, representing the stars Alpha, Beta, Gamma, Delta and Epsilon, which is smaller because it doesn't shine as brightly as the other stars. The Southern Cross represents the country's geographical position in the world and its link to Australia, which also incorporates the Southern Cross on its flag.

Papua New Guinea Flag History: The Papua New Guinea flag was adopted on July 1, 1971 and Papua New Guinea gained independence from Australia on September 16, 1975.

Papua New Guinea Flag Facts: The proportions of 3:4 make the Papua New Guinea flag almost square in shape. A competition was held to design a flag for country in 1971. The government approved a design submitted by local art teacher, Susan Karike. It became the national flag upon Papua New Guinea's independence.

Paraguay

Paraguay Flag Meaning: The Paraguay flag's colors were inspired by the French flag and are considered the colors of liberty and independence. Separately, the red stripe symbolizes courage, equality and patriotism; the white represents unity, purity and peace; and blue stands for liberty, benevolence and truth. The front coat of arms represents May 14, 1811, the date of Paraguay's independence. The olive branch represents peace and the palm branch represents honor. The Treasury Seal on the reverse is a symbol of liberty.

Paraguay Flag History: The Paraguay flag was adopted on November 27, 1842, making it one of the world's oldest flags. Paraguay gained independence from Spain on May 15, 1811. The practice of having a separate emblem on each side of the flag dates back to the time of José de Francia who was in power from 1814-1840.

Paraguay Flag Facts: Paraguay's flag is the only national flag in the world to have different emblems on the obverse (front) and reverse (back). The front of the Paraguay flag has the country's state coat of arms on it, and the back has the country's Treasury Seal.

Peru

Peruvian Flag Meaning: The red stripes represent the blood spilt for Peruvian freedom; while the white stands for peace.

Peruvian Flag History: The Peruvian flag was adopted on February 25, 1825, making it one of the world's oldest flags. Peru gained independence from Spain on July 28, 1821 and a red and white flag diagonally divided into four sections was adopted. The Peruvian flag was modified to a red-white-red horizontal design in 1822 and it was adopted in 1825.

Peruvian Flag Facts: The flag of Peru was designed by José de San Martín, who hailed from Argentina. San Martin was a general and the prime leader of southern South America's successful fight for independence from Spain. Together with Simón Bolívar from the north, San Martín is regarded as one of the liberators of Spanish South America. He is a national hero of Argentina.

Philippines

Philippine Flag Meaning: The blue stripe symbolizes patriotism and justice. The red represents valor and the blood spilt for freedom and independence and the white stands for peace and purity. The white triangle represents equality and the Katipunan nationalist organization. The three stars represent the three main geographical regions of the Philippines: Luzon, Mindanao and Visayas. The sun represents independence and its eight rays represent the eight provinces that led the Philippine uprising against Spanish rule.

Philippine Flag History: The current Philippine flag was adopted on September 16, 1997. The flag was originally adopted in 1898 after the Philippines gained independence from Spain but it was banned in 1907 after the USA took control of the country. Public pressure saw the ban lifted in 1920. Japan invaded the Philippines in 1942 and the flag was again banned until 1943. The USA regained control of the islands in 1945 and granted the Philippines independence on July 4, 1946. The flag underwent minor alterations in 1997. The Philippine flag was first designed by General Aguinaldo in 1897 during his exile in Hong Kong.

Philippine Flag Facts: The national flag of the Philippines is also the country's war ensign, when the Philippines are at war it is flown upside down, with the red stripe on top of the blue.

Poland

Polish Flag Meaning: The colors of the Polish flag are based on the colors of the national coat of arms which is a white eagle on a red shield and dates back to 13th century. The red symbolizes the blood shed in the country's fight for independence and the white symbolizes peace.

Polish Flag History: The current Polish flag was adopted on February 9, 1990. The national colors of Poland have been white and red since 1831 when the country first proclaimed independence from Russia. However Russia retained control over Poland until after the First World War in 1918 when Poland again proclaimed and got its independence. The red over white flag was first adopted on August 1, 1919. Poland lost its independence again in 1939 when it was invade by Russia and Germany Independence was restored with the end of the Second World War and the Polish flag was flown again. The Polish flag remained unchanged with the establishment of the Polish People's Republic in 1947 and then the Republic of Poland in 1989.

Polish Flag Facts: Since 2004, May 2nd is celebrated as Flag Day in Poland but it isn't a public holiday.

Portugal

Portuguese Flag Meaning: The red section represents the Portuguese revolution of 1910 and the green represents hope. The white shield consists of five blue shields with five white dots. The blue shields represent the first king of Portugal, Afonso Henriques I, victory over five Moorish kings and the divine assistance he received to do so is represented by the five dots, which symbolize the five wounds of Christ. Arranged in a cross the shields represent Christianity. The red border featuring seven castles symbolizes the extension of Portugal's territory to include the Algarve. Behind the arms there is a navigational instrument, an armillary sphere. It celebrates Prince Henry the Navigator, who initiated the maritime exploration that led to Portugal's one time colonial empire.

Portuguese Flag History: The Portuguese flag was adopted on June 30, 1911 but the flag had been in use since a revolution overthrew the monarchy on October 5, 1910. Portugal originally declared independence from the Kingdom of Leon in 1128 and in 1170 independence was recognized by the Pope. The emblems on the Portuguese flag date back to the 12th century. The white shield with five blue shields is the arms adopted by Afonso Henriques I, after he defeated the Moors to establish the Christian kingdom of Portugal in 1139.

Portuguese Flag Facts: After the republican revolution in 1910, a number of different flag designs were proposed for the new republic and this sparked a large and not always peaceful debate. The main question was whether to keep the traditional liberal colors of the monarchy (blue and white) or adopt the red and green of the Republican Party. The red and green proposal won.

 


Qatar

Qatar Flag Meaning: The white portion of the Qatar flag symbolizes peace and the maroon, which was formerly red, represents the Kharijite Muslims of Qatar and the bloodshed in Qatar's many wars. The serrated edge represents Qatar as the 9th member of the 'reconciled Emirates' of the Arabian Gulf at the conclusion of the Qatari-British treaty in 1916.

Qatar Flag History: The flag was adopted on July 9, 1971 just before Qatar gained independence from Britain on September 3, 1971. Qatar modified its entirely red flag with the addition of a white vertical stripe at the hoist to suit the British directive in the mid-19th century. The nine-pointed serrated edge was added to the Qatar flag in the mid-20th century and the maroon color was adopted in 1949, thus creating the modern day national flag.

Qatar Flag Facts: One reason given for the adoption of the maroon color over red on the Qatar flag was to distinguish Qatar's flag from similar red and white flags of neighboring countries. Another suggestion is that the natural red dyes used in the manufacturing of the Qatar flag deepened to maroon when exposed to the sun and this process later led to the color change in the flag.

 


Romania

Romanian Flag Meaning: The red, yellow and blue stripes represent Moldova and Walachia, the two principalities that united to form Romania in 1859. The colors are found in the coat of arms of these former states.

Romanian Flag History: The current Romanian flag was adopted on December 27, 1989. A horizontal red, yellow, blue flag was introduced by nationalists in 1848. In 1861, Romania was established when Walachia and Moldavia united. The new Romanian country adopted a red (top), yellow (middle) and blue (bottom) horizontal striped flag. The Romanian flag was changed to its present vertical design in 1867 after being influenced by the French flag. Romania gained independence from the Ottoman Empire on May 9, 1877 and a year later this was used as the country's national flag. Between 1867 and 1989 the flag had the country's coat of arms in the center of it.

Romanian Flag Facts: There are four countries that use a blue-yellow-red vertical striped flag. They are Moldova, Andorra, Chad and Romania. The Moldovan flag is distinguished by the addition of a coat of arms, but the colors are related to and similarly derived from those of the Romanian flag. The flag of Chad is almost identical to Romania's flag.

Russia

Russian Flag Meaning: The design of the Russian flag is based on the flag of the Netherlands.The Russian flag has also inspired the flags of many Slavic nations of Europe, and the colors are often referred to as the pan-Slavic colors. They have come to represent Slavic independence and unity. There is no official meaning of to the Russian flag but some Russians believe the following: In Russia the white symbolizes generosity and frankness; blue stands for loyalty, honesty and wisdom; red means courage, magnanimity and love. Many people also believe red represents Russian people, blue represents the Ukrainians, and white represents the Belo Russians.

Russian Flag History: The current Russian flag was adopted on August 21, 1991 just before the country became an independent state and member of the United Nations on December 26, 1991. Most historians trace the origin of Russia's flag to Peter the Great's visit to the Netherlands in 1699. He went there to learn about shipbuilding and saw the need for Russia to have a naval flag too. He designed the Russian flag similar to the flag of the Netherlands, but with Russian colors. His design was used as a Russian maritime flag for merchant ships in 1799 and was adopted as the civil flag of Russia in 1883. After the Russian Revolution in 1917 the flag was replaced with one that had yellow emblems in it. Russia became a member of the Union of the Soviet Socialist Republics. When Soviet Union collapsed in 1991 the Russian flag was re-adopted.

Russian Flag Facts: There have been rumblings of a flag change in Russia over the past few years and most of the designs are based on the color red as it is a national color of Russia. As of October 2004 nothing had materialized. In Russia the shade of blue used on the flags often varies from a light sky blue to a dark blue.

Rwanda

Rwandan Flag Meaning: The blue stripe represents happiness and peace. The yellow symbolizes the country's mineral wealth and economic development and green symbolizes the country's natural resources and prosperity. The sun stands for unity, transparency and enlightenment from ignorance.

Rwandan Flag History: The Rwandan flag was adopted on October 25, 2001. The Rwandan flag was created to replace the previous one that had been in use since 1961, just before Rwanda gained independence from Belgium on July 1, 1962. The government wanted to disassociate the former flag from the country's genocide of 1994, when ethnic violence ravaged the land.

Rwandan Flag Facts: The current national flag was designed by Rwandan artist Alphonse Kirimbenecyo.

 


Saint-Kitts-And-Nevis

Saint Helena Flag Meaning: The British Union Jack symbolizes the island's ties to Britain, as Saint Helena is an Overseas Dependency of Britain.

Saint Helena Flag History: The Saint Helena flag was adopted on October 4, 1984. The flag used from 1939 to 1984 was similar to this one but now a bird has been added above the badge. The badge for St Helena was derived in 1874 from the Public Seal of the colony.

Saint Helena Flag Facts: Between 1815 and 1821 Saint Helena Island was a place of exile for the French Emperor Napoleon Bonaparte, who was sent there by his captors, the British. The French flag has also been flying over St. Helena, at Longwood, where Napoleon died on May 5, 1821. The spot where Napoleon died has been allocated to France by Britain.

Saint-Lucia

Saint Lucian Flag Meaning: The government of Saint Lucia describes the flag as this: Cerulean blue represents fidelity. This blue reflects our tropical sky and also our emerald surrounding waters- the Caribbean Sea and the Atlantic Ocean. Gold represents the prevailing sunshine in the Caribbean and prosperity. Black and white stand for the cultural influences - the white part, the white culture; the black part, the black culture -the two races living and working in unity. The design impresses the dominance of the Negro culture vis-à-vis that of Europe, against a background of sun­shine and ever-blue sea. This is represented by the three triangles in the centre of the flag, symbolizing three pitons. The Triangle, the shape of which is an isosceles triangle, is reminiscent of the island's famous twin Pitons at Soufriere, rising sheer out of the sea, towards the sky -themselves, a symbol of the hope and aspirations of the people.

Saint Lucian Flag History: The Saint Lucian flag was adopted on March 1, 1967. Saint Lucia gained independence from Britain on February 22, 1979. St. Lucia was first settled by France in 1650 and used the same flag as Martinique, its neighboring island to the north. It became British in 1814. The Saint Lucian flag was designed in 1967 and underwent slight changes in 1979.

Saint Lucian Flag Facts: The flag was designed by Saint Lucian artist Dunstan St. Omer. Saint Lucuian protocol states that when the national flag is flown with other flags it should be the first flag hoisted and the last to be lowered. It should never be lowered while other flags are flying or being hoisted. When the Saint Lucian flag is on display it should not touch anything beneath it such as furniture, floors, trees plants, vehicles, buildings, water or the earth.

Saint Vincent

Saint Vincent and the Grenadines Flag Meaning: The blue symbolizes the sea and sky. Yellow represents the country's golden sands and the Caribbean sunshine, as well as the warmth of the island's people. Green represents the land's vegetation and the vigor of the people. The diamonds create a 'V' standing for Saint Vincent and provide the flag with the source of its nickname which is the gems.

Saint Vincent and the Grenadines Flag History: The flag of Saint Vincent and the Grenadines was adopted on October 21, 1985 after gaining independence from Britain in 1979. The diamonds replaced the flags original emblem when it was adopted.

Saint Vincent and the Grenadines Flag Facts: Saint Vincent and the Grenadines is one of the rare British Commonwealth countries that did not use the British ensign flag system, and instead uses one national flag for all purposes. A Swiss graphic artist designed the current flag of Saint Vincent and the Grenadines after a suitable design couldn't be found in a local flag competition.

Samoa

Samoan Flag Meaning: The red base represents courage. The blue stands for freedom and the white represents purity. The five stars symbolize the constellation the Southern Cross, representing the stars Alpha, Beta, Gamma, Delta and Epsilon, which is smaller because it doesn't shine as brightly as the other stars in the constellation. The cross represents Samoa's geographical position in the world and its link to New Zealand, which also incorporates the Southern Cross on its national flag.

Samoan Helena Flag History: The Samoan flag was adopted on February 24, 1949, while Samoa was still a trust territory of New Zealand. Samoa gained independence from New Zealand on January 1, 1962. The basic design of the Samoan flag was created in 1948. That flag was identical to the current flag except the Southern Cross star pattern had only four stars. The fifth star was added in February of 1949.

Samoan Flag Facts: The Island changed its name from Western Samoa to the Independent state of Samoa in 1997, but the flag remained the same.

San-Marino

San Marino Flag Meaning: The blue stripe represents the sky and the white symbolizes the clouds around the mountains and the snow that caps Mt. Titano.

San Marino Flag History: The San Marino flag was adopted on April 6, 1862, making it one of the world's oldest flags. The blue and white colors originate from a coat of arms from as far back as the 14th century.

San Marino Flag Facts: San Marino claims to be the world's oldest republic still in existence as it was founded in A.D. 301. San Marino also has a civil flag that is seen frequently throughout the world. It is the same as the national flag, but without the coat of arms on it.

Sao-Tome-And-Principe

Saudi-Arabia

Saudi Arabian Flag Meaning: Green is a traditional Islamic color which is linked to the prophet Mohammad who founded Islam and to the Fatimid dynasty. The white text, called the Shahada, is the Muslim Statement of Faith. It translates in English to "There is no God but Allah and Mohammad is the Prophet of Allah." The sword is a symbol of justice and represents Abdul Aziz ibn Saud who was the first Saudi King.

Saudi Arabian Flag History: The current Saudi Arabian flag was adopted on March 15, 1973. The white sword was added to the flag in 1906 and there have been a few slight modifications to the flag, the latest being in 1973.

Saudi Arabian Flag Facts: Arabic text reads from the right to the left. The Saudi Arabian national flag is only allowed for official purpose. The country's citizens are supposed to fly a plain green flag with a golden palm tree over two crossed swords in the upper right corner.

Scotland

Scottish Flag Meaning: Traditional belief states that Scotland's adoption of St Andrew, a disciple of Jesus who is said to have been crucified on an X-shaped cross, as their patron saint was because some of his bones were taken to Scotland and buried at the site of modern day St Andrews. A different legend dating to the 8th century says that King Angus, about to lead his army into battle against a stronger force, spent the night praying for divine guidance and St Andrew appeared in his dreams, promising victory. The next day the King saw white clouds form a saltire (cross) when he looked up into the blue sky. After this vision Angus led his soldiers to victory and he proclaimed St Andrew as the patron saint of Scotland.

Scottish Flag History: There is no official date of adoption for the Scottish flag but the use of the St. Andrew's cross dates back to at least the 12th century and perhaps as early as the eighth century. By the 15th century the cross was used with a blue background.

Scottish Flag Facts: The Scottish flag is one of three flags that make up the Union Jack of Great Britain, one of the most famous flags in the world. The Union Jack consists of the Scottish white cross of St. Andrew the English red cross of St. George and the Northern Irish red cross of St. Patrick on a blue base. After nearly 300 years, Scotland regained the right to govern itself with the opening of the Scottish parliament in Edinburgh on July 1, 1999. Scottish flags were flown all over the country that day.

Senegal

Senegalese Flag Meaning: The green stripe represents Islam, progress and hope. The yellow stands for the country's natural wealth and progress, which will be achieved through the people's collective hard work. The red represents the common African struggle for independence. The star represents unity and hope. The colors are traditional pan-African colors.

Senegalese Flag History: The Senegalese flag was adopted on August 20, 1960, just after gaining independence from France in 1959. Senegal joined the Sudanese Republic, which is now Mali, to create a union called the Mali Federation, in 1959, but withdrew from the Federation in 1960. The Mali Federation's flag was based on the French flag, with the French blue-white-red colors being replaced with the pan-African colors of green-yellow-red.

Senegalese Flag Facts: Early in 2004, President Wade of Senegal reportedly had designed a new flag for the country, but in doing so he violated the country's constitution as only the vote of the Senegalese people have the right to change any of the country's symbols.

Seychelles

Seychelles Flag Meaning: Red, white and green are the colors of the Seychelles People's United Party; while blue and yellow represent the country's Democratic Party. On their own, the blue represents the sea and sky, yellow represents the sun, red symbolizes the unity of the nation's people, white stands for justice and harmony and green symbolizes the land. The expanding width of the flag's stripes symbolizes the Seychelles growth and vitality.

Seychelles Flag History: The Seychelles flag was adopted on June 18, 1996. The islands gained independence from Britain on June 29, 1976. This is the country's third flag since gaining independence. Seychelles' first independent government was overthrown in a political coup in 1977 and a new national flag was adopted, which was replaced by the current design.

Seychelles Flag Facts: The flag used in Seychelles from 1977 to 1996 was red, white and black.

Sierra-Leone

Sierra Leone Flag Meaning: The green stripe represents agriculture, the country's natural wealth and its mountains. The white stripe stands for justice and unity, and blue represents the Atlantic Ocean and the harbor of Freetown, the country's capital.

Sierra Leone Flag History: The flag was adopted on April 27, 1961 when Sierra Leone gained independence from Britain. The name Sierra Leone translates to 'Lion Mountains' in Portuguese. Portuguese discoverers named the land in the 15th century after its mountainous regions. The Sierra Leone flag originates from the country's coat of arms.

Sierra Leone Flag Facts: From 1889 to 1961 the flag of Sierra Leone incorporated the British union Jack in it.

Singapore

Singapore Flag Meaning: The red represents universal brotherhood and equality of man and the white stands for purity and virtue. The crescent moon, symbolizes the young nation of Singapore on the rise and the five stars represent the country's ideals of democracy, peace, progress, justice and equality.

Singapore Flag History: The Singapore flag was adopted on December 3, 1959. Singapore gained independence from Malaysia on August 9, 1965. In 1963, Singapore joined with Malaya, North Borneo (now Sabah) and Sarawak to form the Federation of Malaysia but left in 1959.

Singapore Flag Facts: The Singapore flag was originally designed with three stars, until the country's leaders expressed concern that Singapore might be perceived to be associated with the Malayan Communist Party, as their flag also had three stars. The Singapore flag was also meant to be red, as red is a very traditional Chinese color and the majority of Singapore's population is Chinese, but the idea was scrapped as red was associated with communism. The British Union Jack flew over Singapore for 140 years, from 1819 to 1959.

Slovakia

Slovakian Flag Meaning: The flag's coat of arms represents Slovakia's past link with Hungary and it is a modified version of the Hungarian coat of arms. The arms' cross represents Orthodox Christianity and the mountains symbolize the Tatra, Fatra and Matra mountain regions across the country. Blue, white and red are traditional Slavic colors and together they make up the pan-Slavic colors. They were initially adopted by Slavic nations in the mid-19th century and were influenced by the flag of Russia; which was an independent Slavic country at the time. The colors now stand for Slavic unity and independence and can be seen in the flags of most Slavic nations.

Slovakian Flag History: The flag of Slovakia was adopted on January 1, 1992. The white, blue and red colors were introduced in 1848, when Slovakia was called Upper Hungary and was ruled by Hungary. In 1918, after leaving Hungary, Slovakia joined Bohemia and Moravia to form the Czechoslovak Republic (Czechoslovakia). On January 1, 1993, Slovakia and the Czech Republic were formed after Czechoslovakia split into two countries. A plain horizontal three colored flag was adopted during the Second World War when the country was occupied by Germany and was restored in 1990. In 1992 the coat of arms was added to avoid confusion with the flag of Russia.

Slovakian Flag Facts: Before Slovakia and the Czech Republic separated, a resolution was passed by the Czechoslovak government that stated neither of the two new countries could continue to use the flag of Czechoslovakia. However, the Czech Republic adopted the flag of Czechoslovakia in direct violation of the resolution and refused to change.

Slovenia

Slovenian Flag Meaning: The three stars on the coat of arms symbolize Slovenian independence and were adopted from the arms of the former 15th century Slovenian Duchy of Celje. The duchy unsuccessfully attempted to obtain independence from Austro-Hungarian rule. The two wavy blue lines at the bottom of the mountain represent the country's rivers flowing into the sea. Blue, white and red are traditional Slavic colors and together they make up the pan-Slavic colors. They were initially adopted by Slavic nations in the mid-19th century and were influenced by the flag of Russia; which was an independent Slavic country at the time. The colors now stand for Slavic unity and independence and can be seen in the flags of most Slavic nations.

Slovenian Flag History: The Slovenian flag was adopted on June 7, 1991. The Slovenian white, blue and red colors originated with Slovenian nationalists in 1848, when Slovenia was part of the Austro-Hungarian Empire. When the Austro-Hungarian kingdom collapsed after the First World War Slovenia merged with other Slavic states in 1918 to form a union that would become Yugoslavia. Slovenia gained independence from Yugoslavia in 1992.

Slovenian Flag Facts: Slovenian artist Marko Pogacnik created the country's coat of arms in 1991. Because the Slovenian flag is similar to the flags of Russia and Slovakia there have been numerous attempts to change it, but as of October, 2004, no change had occurred.

Solomon-Islands

Solomon Islands Flag Meaning: The blue section represents the water of the Pacific Ocean; while the yellow stripe symbolizes the sunshine and the green section stands for the fertility of the nation. Originally, the five stars represented the five administrative districts at the time of Solomon Island's independence. When the number of districts in the country increased the meaning of the stars was then said to represent the five main groups of islands groups that form the Solomon Islands.

Solomon Islands Flag History: The flag of the Solomon Islands was adopted on November 18, 1977, just before the country gained independence from Britain on July 7, 1978.

Solomon Islands Flag Facts: In 1975 there was a competition to design the new flag of the Solomon Islands and a winner was claimed, but the flag caused a lot of controversy and it was eventually discarded and replaced with the current flag which was also an entry in the competition.

Somalia

Somali Flag Meaning: The blue base originates from the flag of the United Nations and it represents the blue sky over Somalia and the UN, who helped the country realize its dream of independence. The white star represents African freedom. The star's individual points represent the five historical regions inhabited by the Somali people: Italian Somaliland (Somalia), British Somaliland (Somalia), French Somaliland (Djibouti), the Ogaden region of Ethiopia and north Kenya.

Somali Flag History: The Somali flag was adopted on October 12, 1954 and it was inspired by the flag of the United Nations who had previously named the country as a trustee of Italy for 10 years. In 1960 Somalia gained independence and united with the former British Somaliland. The present day Somalia consists of the former Italian Somaliland and British Somaliland nations.

Somali Flag Facts: Mr. Mohammed Awale Liban designed the Somali flag and presented it to the government in less than 24 hours.

South-Africa

South African Flag Meaning: Although the colors have no official meaning attached to them the South African flag incorporates the colors black, green and yellow of Nelson Mandela's political party, the African National Congress and the former Boer republics flags (red, white, and blue). The Y shape represents the convergence of South Africa's diverse society and the desire for unity. The South African flag is basically made up of former South African flags and the past meanings of the colors were Red for bloodshed, blue of open blue skies, green for the land, black for the black people, white for the European people and yellow for the natural resources such as gold.

South African Flag History: The South African flag was adopted on April 27, 1994 after Nelson Mandela was elected President. A new national flag was adopted to signify the dawn of a new democratic South Africa and to reflect the country's political transformation. It is one of the world's newest flags. South Africa gained independence from Britain on May 31, 1910.

South African Flag Facts: The flag was designed by Mr. F. Brownell, South Africa's state herald. Earlier attempts to find a new South African flag with the help of the public turned out to be unsuccessful.

South-Korea

South Korean Flag Meaning: White is a traditional color of the Korean people. The emblem in the centre of the South Korean flag represents the dual forces of yin (blue) and yang (red). The yin and yang balance each other and maintain a harmonious existence by being complementary opposites, positive and negative, active and passive, male and female, night and day, good and evil and so on. Yin is the passive or static mode and yang the active or dynamic mode. The trigrams represent the elements of fire, water, earth, wood, and metal.

South Korean Flag History: The current South Korean flag was adopted on January 25, 1950. The Republic of Korea was formed in August, 1948. The flag was designed in 1882 during the reign of King Gojong by the Korean ambassador to Japan. Gojong proclaimed the Taegeukgi to be the official flag of Korea on March 6, 1883.

South Korean Flag Facts: In Korean the national flag is called 'Taegukki' ('Great Polarity'), taking its name from the central emblem on the flag, which is called a 'taegeuk circle'.

Spain

Spanish Flag Meaning: Red and yellow are traditional Spanish colors and originate from the coat of arms of the original Spanish kingdoms. No other countries used the red and yellow colors at that time. See the Spanish flag description for their meaning.

Spanish Flag History: The current Spanish flag was adopted on December 19, 1981. The closest variation of the current Spanish flag can be traced back to 1785 when Carlos III ruled Spain. At this time the kingdom wanted a flag that was different from the Bourbon flags of the two France and the Two Sicilies, which were the other principal Bourbon kingdoms. Red and yellow were used in the national flag until the monarchy was removed in 1931. The new republic adopted a flag of red, yellow and purple horizontal stripes. The former flag was reinstated in 1936. The main changes to the Spanish flag over the years has been modifications to the coat of arms.

Spanish Flag Facts: A flag oath called the 'jura de bandera' took place every year when Spanish youths ended their military service. Any Spanish citizen could attend the ceremony and take part in the oath. Citizens are not otherwise sworn in to the flag. There is also a civil flag of Spain which is quite commonly seen throughout the world. It is the same as the national flag but it doesn't have the coat of arms in it.

Sri-Lanka

Sri Lankan Flag Meaning: The green stripe represents Sri Lanka's minority Muslims and the orange stripe the minority Hindu Tamils. The yellow represents Buddhism and the crimson stands for a long life. The golden lion is an ancient symbol of the people and the sword is a symbol of authority. The pipul tree leaves are a Buddhist symbol and come from the tree, under which Gautama is said to have received enlightenment and become Buddha. Individually the leaves represent love, compassion, sympathy and equanimity.

Sri Lankan Flag History: The current Sri Lankan flag was adopted on September 7, 1978. Sri Lanka, gained independence from Britain on February 4, 1948 and changed its name from Ceylon in 1972. The Sri Lankan flag is called the Lion Flag, and has been used by the Sri Lankan people for centuries. The lion flag was used in 1948 and it was modified in 1951 the vertical stripes to represent the minority religious groups of the country. The leaves were added to the flag when the country changed names. The leaves were slightly modified in 1978.

Sri Lankan Flag Facts: The Sri Lankan flag is actually two flags in one. The Lion flag is shown in its entirety on the right side and the two colored stripes were added after the Hindu Tamils found the Lion Flag unacceptable.

Saint Kitts

Saint Kitts and Nevis Flag Meaning: The green stripe represents agriculture and fertility of the country. The red stripe represents the nation's difficulty in trying to end slavery and colonialism and to achieve independence. The black represents the African heritage of the islands and yellow stands for the consistent sunshine in the Caribbean. The stars represent the islands of St. Kitts and Nevis and symbolize their liberty and hope.

Saint Kitts and Nevis Flag History: The flag of St. Kitts and Nevis was adopted on September 19, 1983 when the country received independence from Britain. The country is also known as St. Christopher.

Saint Kitts and Nevis Flag Facts: The flag of St. Kitts and Nevis is based on a design submitted by local teacher Edrice Lewis in a national flag competition.

Sudan

Sudan Flag Meaning: Red, white, black and green are called the pan-Arab colors and have been historically linked to the Arab people and Islamic religion for centuries. The colors stand for Arab unity and independence. The red stripe represents Sudan's struggle for independence and the sacrifices of the country's martyrs. The white represents peace, light and optimism. It also represents the White Flag League which was a nationalist group that rose up against colonial rule in 1924. The black represents Sudan; in Arabic 'Sudan' means black. It also represents the black flag of nationalists who fought colonial rule during the Mahdist Revolution, late in 19th century. Green represents Islam, agriculture and the prosperity of the land.

Sudan Flag History: The Sudan flag was adopted on May 20, 1970. Sudan gained independence from Egypt and Britain on January 1, 1956, and at that time adopted a blue, yellow and green horizontal striped flag. The Sudan flag was changed in 1970 after a military coup in 1969.

Sudan Flag Facts: The Sudan flag's design was the result of a nationally held flag competition and it is based on the Arab Liberation Flag of Egypt.

Suriname

Suriname Flag Meaning: The red stripe represents the country's progress and struggle to achieve a better quality of life. The white stands for freedom and justice and green symbolizes the fertility and natural resources of the land, as well as hope. Originally, the colors also represented three of Suriname's political parties. Red was for the Hindu Vatan Hitkari, white represented the People's Party and green stood for the National Party. The star represents a golden future for Suriname, achieved through unity and hard work. The individual points represent the country's five main ethnic groups of the nation which are Creoles (mixed African and Native American descent), Asian Indians, Chinese, American Indians and Europeans.

Suriname Flag History: The Suriname flag was adopted on November 25, 1975, when Suriname gained its independence from the Netherlands. The country was formerly known as Dutch Guiana. 1667, the British gave up their part of Suriname to the Dutch for the North American Dutch colony of New Amsterdam which is now New York.

Suriname Flag Facts: The Suriname flag was chosen after a nationally held flag design competition. The purpose of the event was to create a flag which symbolized Suriname's unity and progress, as well as incorporated the colors of Suriname's main political parties. The flag's designer was Jacques Herman Pinas.

Swaziland

Swaziland Flag Meaning: The red stripe represents the past battles fought for Swaziland. The yellow represents the country's mineral wealth and the blue stands for peace.

Swaziland Flag History: The flag was adopted on October 30, 1967, a year before Swaziland gained independence from Britain on September 6, 1968. The colors of the Swaziland flag are based on a military flag which was presented to the Swazi Pioneer Corps in 1941, by the king of Swaziland to remind them of Swazi military traditions.

Swaziland Flag Facts: Prior to gaining independence from Britain, Swaziland flew the British Union Jack.

Sweden

Swedish Flag Meaning: The design of the Swedish flag is likely based on the flag of Denmark; while the yellow and blue originate from the Swedish Coat of Arms which features three yellow crowns on a blue base. The cross, common to most Scandinavian flags, represents Sweden's link to other the Scandinavian countries.

Swedish Flag History: The exact age of the Swedish Flag is unclear, but the oldest recorded images of a blue cloth with a yellow cross on it date back to the 16th century. The Swedish flag was officially readopted on June 22, 1906, making it one of the oldest flags in the world. In 1569 a royal warrant, issued by King John III of Sweden, stated that all Swedish battle flags should have a yellow cross on them. Sweden unified with Norway from 1814 to 1906 and placed an emblem representing the union in the upper left corner of their blue and yellow flag. The union dissolved in 1905 and the emblem was removed in 1906, resulting in the current flag.

Swedish Flag Facts: Swedish protocol states that a flag should not be used for anything else once it becomes unsuitable for flying. It should be burnt.

Switzerland

Swiss Flag Meaning: The white cross on the red base represents faith in Christianity. The Swiss flag traditionally stands for freedom, honor and fidelity. In modern times the Swiss flag has also come to represent neutrality, democracy, peace and refuge.

Swiss Flag History: The current Swiss flag was adopted on December 12, 1889, making it one of the world's oldest flags. Under the Treaty of Westphalia in 1648, European countries recognized Switzerland's independence from the Holy Roman Empire, where the flag has its roots, and its status as a neutral country. In the late 14th century Swiss soldiers going into battle started wearing emblems that featured a white cross on a red base as a sign of their Christian faith and to distinguish themselves from their enemies. In 1814, a white cross on a red base appeared on the seal of the country and in 1848 the flag was adopted as the nation's military flag. It was then adopted as the national flag in 1889.

Swiss Flag Facts: The flag of Switzerland is square shaped with its length being equal to the width. In 1906, the humanitarian organization called the Red Cross reversed the colors of the Swiss flag to create the Red Cross flag. This was to honor the nationality of the founder of the Red Cross, Swiss citizen Henri Dunant.

Syria

 


Taiwan

 

Tajikistan

Tajikistan Flag Meaning: The red stripe represents Tajikistan's independence and the land itself. The white represents the country's purity and the cotton industry which is an important part of the Tajik economy. The green represents Tajikistan's agriculture. The crown and stars symbolize Tajik sovereignty, the union of workers and the unity of Tajikistan's social classes.

Tajikistan Flag History: The Tajikistan flag was adopted on November 24, 1992, after the country gained its independence from the Soviet Union on September 9, 1991. When Tajikistan was a part of the Soviet Union it used a red flag with thin white and green horizontal stripes, with associated Soviet emblems. These colors form the basis of the current Tajikistan flag.

Tajikistan Flag Facts: The Tajikistan flag's stripes are the same color as the flag of Iran, but in a different order. The countries also have close ethnic ties.

Tanzania

Tanzanian Flag Meaning: The green stripe symbolizes agriculture and the fertility of the land. The black represents the citizens of Tanzania. The blue stripe stands for the Indian Ocean which is on Tanzania's eastern coastline, and the yellow stripe represents the country's mineral wealth.

Tanzanian Flag History: The Tanzanian flag was adopted on June 30, 1964. The Tanzanian flag originates from the flags of Tanganyika and Zanzibar, the two countries that merged together to form Tanzania in April 1964. Tanganyika's flag was green with a yellow edged black horizontal stripe centrally placed; while Zanzibar's flag was a horizontal striped tricolor of blue, black and green. Tanzania chose a diagonal design to show equal status to both flags.

Tanzanian Flag Facts: Even though Zanzibar united with Tanganyika to form Tanzania in 1964, the island is planning to introduce its own flag before the end of 2004.

Thailand

Thai Flag Meaning: The red stripes represent the blood spilt to maintain Thailand's independence. The white stands for purity and is the color of Buddhism which is the country's main religion. Blue is Thailand's national color and it represents the Thai monarchy. The blue is also used to honor Thailand's World War I allies, Great Britain, France, United States and Russia, who all had red, white and blue flags.

Thai Flag History: The current Thai flag was adopted on September 28, 1917, making it one of the world's older flags. From the mid-19th century until 1916, Thailand, which was called Siam until 1939, used a red based flag with a white elephant on it. That flag was replaced in 1916 with a red-white-red-white-red horizontal striped flag which was modified in 1917, when the blue center replaced red.

Thai Flag Facts: The Thai flag is called Triaranga or Triarong, which literally means 'tricolor'. Even when Thai changed its name from Siam in 1939 and when it was allied with Japan during World War 2 the flag remained the same.

Togo

Togo Flag Meaning: The red square symbolizes the loyalty and the patriotism of the people towards their country. The green represents hope, fertility and agriculture. Yellow stands for the country's mineral wealth and the faith that hard work and strength will bring prosperity. The white star represents life, purity, peace, dignity and Togo's independence. The five stripes represent the nation's five distinct geographical regions.

Togo Flag History: The Togo flag was adopted on April 27, 1960 when Togo gained independence from France. Togo's flag features the pan-African colors of red, yellow and green, which have been adopted by many African ex-colonies and which symbolize African independence and unity. The colors are believed to have originated from the flag of Ethiopia, the oldest independent nation in Africa.

Togo Flag Facts: Mr. Ahyi Paul, who was a student in France at the time, designed the Togo flag, which he entered in a 1958 flag competition.

Tonga

Tongan Flag Meaning: The red cross represents the country's belief in Christianity. The white stands for purity and the red represents the blood Jesus shed at his crucifixion and reminds Tonga's people that they owe their salvation to him.

Tongan Flag History: The Tongan flag originated in the 1860s and was adopted on November 4, 1875, making it one of the world's oldest flags. The constitution of 1875 stated that the Tongan flag should never be changed. The Tongan flag was based on an idea from the Tongan King, George Tupou I and possibly patterned on the British Red Ensign, a red flag with the Union Jack in the upper left corner. Tonga gained independence from British protectorate status on June 4, 1970.

Tongan Flag Facts: Tonga used to fly a flag that was the same as the flag of the Red Cross organization, so the Tongan flag was changed to avoid confusion with it. An 1875 law states the Tongan flag should never be altered.

Trinidad-And-Tobago

Trinidad and Tobago Flag Meaning: The red base represents the vigor of the land in Trinidad and Tobago, the friendliness and courage of its people, and the sun. The black represents the unity and strength of the people, as well as the natural wealth of the country. The white represents the surrounding sea and the purity and equality of all people under the sun. Together, the colors represent earth, water and fire, which connect the nation's people to the past present and future.

Trinidad and Tobago Flag History: The flag of Trinidad and Tobago was adopted on August 31, 1962 when Trinidad and Tobago gained independence from Britain.

Trinidad and Tobago Flag Facts: The flag was designed by the Trinidad and Tobago Independence Committee in 1962.

Tunisia

Tunisian Flag Meaning: Red is a traditional color of Islam and was the color adopted by the Ottoman Empire who ruled Tunisia from late 16th century until 1881. It also came to represent resistance against Turkish supremacy. The crescent and star are traditional symbols of Islam and are also considered to be lucky symbols. The white circle represents the sun.

Tunisian Flag History: The Tunisian flag was originally adopted between 1831 and 1835, making Tunisia's flag one of the world's oldest flags. However, the Tunisian flag wasn't legislated in constitution until 1959, after Tunisia had gained independence from France on March 20, 1956. The current version of the Tunisian flag was adopted on July 3, 1999.

Tunisian Flag Facts: Even though Tunisia resisted against the Ottoman Empire and Turkish rule, the Tunisian flag is very similar to the Turkish flag.

Turkey

Turkish Flag Meaning: Red is a traditional Islamic color and was the color used by the Ottoman Empire, who formerly ruled Turkey, but the empire collapsed in 1918. The crescent and star are ancient symbols of Islam and are considered to be signs of good luck. The color red is a prominent color in Turkish history and even though the crescent and star are symbols of Islam they have been used in Asia Minor even before the advent of Islam.

Turkish Flag History: The Turkish flag has been in use since 1844 but wasn't officially adopted until June 5, 1936. Originally the flag was a crescent on a green base, but this was changed in 1793 when Sultan Selim III changed the background to red. The star was then added in 1844. Like most of the older flags in the world, there are many legends that describe the history and creation of the Turkish flag and the facts are sometimes hard to substantiate.

Turkish Flag Facts: The Flag of Turkey is called 'Ay Yildiz' in Turkish which means 'moon star' in English. Another nickname for the Turkish flag is 'al sancak', which translates roughly into 'red banner'.

Turkmenistan

Turkmenistan Flag Meaning: The art of Carpet weaving in Turkmenistan has been present for over a thousand years. Its importance is represented in the flag which incorporates five of the country's basic patterns (called 'guls' locally). In the mid-1990s Turkmenistan declared a policy of permanent neutrality and a pair of olive branches, like those on the United Nations flag, was added to the Turkmenistan flag to represent this. The green base represents Islam and the crescent symbolizes a bright future and hope. The five stars symbolize the five regions or Turkmenistan as well as the five human senses: hearing, sight, smell, taste and touch. The five carpet designs represent the traditions of the country and are a national symbol.

Turkmenistan Flag History: The Turkmenistan flag was adopted on January 24, 2001. The current Turkmenistan flag is a slight modification of the flag used after Turkmenistan gained independence from the Soviet Union on October 27, 1991.

Turkmenistan Flag Facts: When Turkmenistan was a part of the Soviet Union, its flags were all red based with soviet symbols on them.

Turks and Caicos Island

Turks and Caicos Islands Flag Meaning: The Union Jack represents the country's ties to Britain, as it is a British Overseas Territory. The conch, lobster and cactus represent items found in the country.

Turks and Caicos Islands Flag History: The flag of the Turks and Caicos Islands was adopted on November 7, 1968.

Turks and Caicos Islands Flag Facts: Previous versions of the country's flags were similar to the current flag of the Turks and Caicos Islands but the emblems were different.

Tuvalu

Tuvalu Flag Meaning: The British Union Jack represents the country's ties to Britain. The nine stars represent the nine islands of Tuvalu and reproduce their geographical appearance on a map, with the top of the flag being East and the left side being north.

Tuvalu Flag History: Tuvalu gained independence from Britain on October 1, 1978 and adopted the current flag. It was replaced for a period in the 1990s but when the country went through a change of government on April 11, 1997, it reverted to the previous flag of 1978. In 1975 the Ellice Islands were renamed Tuvalu, meaning 'eight standing alone'. Only eight of the nine Tuvalu islands were populated at the time the name was chosen.

Tuvalu Flag Facts: In 1995 the Tuvalu flag was replaced with a new one which wasn't based on the British Union Jack, but the new proposal wasn't liked by the citizens of Tuvalu and the old flag was re-instated in 1997, with some minor changes to it.

 


Uganda

Ugandan Flag Meaning: The black stripes symbolize the African people. The yellow symbolizes the sun and the red stands for brotherhood and fraternity. The crested crane is a national symbol of Uganda - which was first used during British colonial times. Black, yellow and red were also the colors of the Uganda People's Congress party, who came to power in elections in April 1962.

Ugandan Flag History: The Ugandan flag was adopted on October 9, 1962, the day Uganda gained independence from Britain. A different flag was adopted by the ruling party as the national flag and was unofficially flown, but the Congress Party won the election and a new design - which was based on their colors - was adopted as the current national flag.

Ugandan Flag Facts: The Ugandan flag was designed by Uganda's minister of justice at the time, Mr. Grace Ibingira. It was the second of his two flag designs.

United Kingdom Of Great Britain

British Flag Meaning: The red cross, outlined in white, is the cross of St. George, the patron saint of England, and represents England and Wales. The white diagonal cross on a blue base is the cross of St. Andrew, the patron saint of Scotland, and represents Scotland. The red diagonal cross on a white base is the cross of St. Patrick, the patron saint of Ireland. When the cross of St. Patrick was incorporated into the flag in 1801 it represented all of Ireland but in the 1920s most of Ireland became a separate country and since then the cross has only represented Northern Ireland.

British Flag History: The British flag was adopted on January 1, 1801, making it one of the oldest flags in the world. The first British flag dates back to 1606 when it combined the flags of the Kingdoms of England and Scotland. Northern Ireland's flag of St. Patrick was added in 1801 and completed the flag as we know it today. Wales isn't represented separately on the flag because it had already been united with England by the time the first flag was formed in 1606.

British Flag Facts: The British flag is sometimes called the Union Flag, but its more common name is the Union Jack. It is one of the most recognizable flags in the world as it's also incorporated into the flags of other British and former British colonies. Union Jacks are also seen in other color combinations as the flag is often used by the supporters of various soccer teams.

Ukraine

Ukrainian Flag Meaning: The blue half represents peace, the sky above Ukraine and the country's streams and the yellow represents prosperity and the color of the country's wheat fields.

Ukrainian Flag History: The Ukrainian flag was adopted on January 28, 1992. The blue and yellow national colors of Ukraine originated in 1848 and came from the coat of arms of the city of Lviv. Ukraine officially adopted a blue and yellow national flag in 1918. The flag was the same as the one flown in 1848, yellow on top of blue. In 1918, the colors were reversed. Ukraine gained independence from the Soviet Union on August 24, 1991

Ukrainian Flag Facts: When Ukraine was under Soviet rule this flag was forbidden as a symbol of nationalism. The Ukrainian SSR had its own flag.

United-Arab-Emirates

United Arab Emirates Flag Meaning: The flag of the United Arab Emirates is believed to be based on the Arab Revolt Flag which was created in 1916, and flown by Arab nationalists during their liberation struggle against Ottoman (Turkish) rule. Red, white, black and green are called the pan-Arab colors and have been historically linked to the Arab people and Islamic faith for centuries. They stand for Arab unity and independence and can be seen in the flags of many countries in the region.

United Arab Emirates Flag History: The flag of the United Arab Emirates was adopted on December 2, 1971 when the country was formed by a union of seven sheikdoms. Before 1971 the seven emirates: Abu Dhabi, Ajman, Dubai, Fujairah, Ras al-Khaimah, Sharjah and Umm al-Qaiwain were known as the Trucial States, in reference of a nineteenth-century truce between the British and some Arab sheikhs. Until the mid 19th century the area was known as the Pirate Coast because of the number of pirates there.

United Arab Emirates Flag Facts: The United Arab Emirates used to have the biggest flag pole in the world until it was surpassed in 2003 by the Amman (Jordan).

United-States-Of-America

American Flag Meaning: The 13 stripes represent the 13 original colonies of the US: Connecticut, Delaware, Georgia, Maryland, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, North Carolina, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, South Carolina and Virginia. The 50 stars represent the individual states that make up the nation. Popular history states the red of the flag represents valor, white stands for liberty or purity and blue represents justice, loyalty and perseverance. These meanings are unofficial though.

American Flag History: The current American flag was adopted on July 4, 1960. The American flag originated in the mid-18th century from flags used at the time of the American War of Independence with Britain. Congress officially set the design of the American flag in June 1777, stating that it should be 13 alternating red and white stripes, with 13 white stars on a blue field as there were 13 original member states in the newly formed Union. As new states joined the country a new star and stripe were added to the American flag. In 1818, the American flag's design was changed to the original one of 13 stripes. Any new states were now represented by a white star only and would be added to the American flag on July 4th of the year they joined. Up until 1818, there was no specific pattern for the stars to follow and this led to a few different designs until the president stated they should be placed in parallel rows. The last star, representing Hawaii was added was in 1960, and it became the 27th version of the American flag. Like many of the worlds other old flags, there are many legends and myths that surround the flag of the United States of America.

American Flag Facts: The American flag is often called "the stars and stripes" or "Old Glory." The American flag has influenced the design of many other of the world's flags Old and tattered flags are supposed to be burned in a simple ceremony once they become unacceptable for flying. However, may people have taken to public displays of burning the American flag to show their displeasure with the country.

Uruguay

Uruguay Flag Meaning: The sun emblem is the 'Sun of May'; it is a symbol of freedom and independence. The nine stripes represent the nine provinces of Uruguay, which existed at the time of the flags creation.

Uruguay Flag History: The Uruguay flag was adopted on July 11, 1830, making it one of the world's oldest flags. When it was first adopted in 1828 it had 17 stripes but it was reduced to nine in 1830. Uruguay declared independence from Brazil on August 25, 1825.

Uruguay Flag Facts: The colors of the Uruguay flag were inspired by the flag of Argentina; while the United States national flag influenced the design.

Uzbekistan

Uzbekistan Flag Meaning: The crescent symbolizes the independence of Uzbekistan and the historical traditions of the people. The 12 stars represent the historical culture of the country and relate to the 12 signs of the zodiac, which served as a basis for a solar calendar. The blue is historically linked to Uzbekistan and also represents the sky and water as one of the main sources of life. The white stands for peace and purity of ideals. Green represents nature, hope and new life and red represents life.

Uzbekistan Flag History: The Uzbekistan flag was adopted on November 18, 1991, just after Uzbekistan gained independence from the Soviet Union on September 1, 1991.

Uzbekistan Flag Facts: Even though Uzbekistan is a predominantly Muslim country and the crescent is a symbol of Islam, the crescent moon on the Uzbekistan flag represents of the nation instead of its religion.

 


Vanuatu

Vanuatu Flag Meaning: The black represents the Melanesian people that make up the majority of Vanuatu's population. Red represents the country's unity through blood. Green represents the land and its agriculture and yellow stands for the Christianity of the people, the light it shines on them, and peace. The boar's tusk is a traditional Vanuatu symbol of prosperity and is worn as a pendant by islanders. The leaves stand for peace. If looking at Vanuatu on a map, the islands that make up the nation form a Y-shape; this is represented by the Y on the flag.

Vanuatu Flag History: The Vanuatu flag was adopted on February 13, 1980. Vanuatu gained independence from France and Britain on July 30, 1980. After the Vanuaaku Party led the country to independence the party's colors were adopted as the basis for the national flag.

Vanuatu Flag Facts: The final design of the Vanuatu flag was chosen shortly before Vanuatu gained independence by a parliamentary committee from flags that were submitted by local artists.

Vatican-City

Vatican City Flag Meaning: In heraldry, yellow and white usually represent the metals, gold and silver, which are not placed side by side. Special exception is made in here because gold and silver also represent the keys of Saint Peter.

Vatican City Flag History: The flag of Vatican City was introduced in 1825, but wasn't adopted until June 8, 1929, just after it gained independence from Italy on February 11, 1929. Vatican City-State is the smallest independent country in the world both in area and in population The Vatican is the home of the Pope and forms the territory of the Holy Sea; which is the central authority of the Roman Catholic Church.

Vatican City Flag Facts: Although the Vatican City flag is often seen in various sizes, the official proportions are1:1, which makes the flag square in shape.

Venezuela

Venezuelan Flag Meaning: The Venezuelan flag is based on one flown by independence fighters fighting against Spanish colonial rule. At that time the yellow represented the gold of the Americas, blue stood for the Atlantic Ocean which separated the new Americas from the bloody old world of Europe and Spain which is signified by red. A modern but similar meaning behind the Venezuelan flag states that the yellow represents new opportunities, the red symbolizes Spain, and the blue stands for the Atlantic Ocean, which separates the two. The seven stars represent the seven provinces that existed at the time of Venezuelan independence.

Venezuelan Flag History: The Venezuelan flag was adopted on February 19, 1954. Venezuela declared independence from Spain on July 5, 1811. After gaining independence the former Spanish colonies of Colombia, Ecuador, Panama and Venezuela formed a federation of states called Greater Colombia. This union used a horizontal striped flag (yellow, blue and red) based on a flag flown at the turn of the 19th century by Central American independence fighters. The current flags of Colombia, Ecuador and Venezuela are based on this flag. In 1829, Venezuela left the federation and adopted a yellow, blue, red horizontal flag. The basic design has remained the same with a few modifications. The last modification to the Venezuelan flag occurred in 1954, when the coat of arms was added.

Venezuelan Flag Facts: There are many Venezuelan flags that do not have the coat of arms on them; this is the country's civil flag.

Vietnam

Vietnamese Flag Meaning: The red base represents blood spilt during the country's fight for independence. The star represents Vietnam's unity and the points on the star represent the union of the workers, peasants, soldiers, intellectuals and young people working together in building socialism.

Vietnamese Flag History: The Vietnamese flag was adopted on November 30, 1955, after gaining independence from French rule in 1954. The basic design of the Vietnamese flag originates from the 1940s and was used by liberation forces fighting for independence against Japan. When the Vietnamese flag was adopted in 1955, it was only used by the communist-led North Vietnam. The southern half of the nation was called the Republic of South Vietnam. The south collapsed in 1976 and the country was unified under the name the Socialist Republic of Vietnam.

Vietnamese Flag Facts: Vietnam had been under the rule of China, Japan and France before gaining independence. When under French rule Vietnam's flag was yellow based. The flag of South Vietnam was also yellow based.

Virgin Islands

British Virgin Islands Flag Meaning: It is said that when Columbus discovered the British Virgin Islands in 1493, he named them 'Las Virgenes' in honor of St. Ursula and her companions. The eleven lamps which surround the figure of St. Ursula each represent 1,000 of the 11,000 Virgins who, according to the legend, were martyred along with St. Ursula. The figure of St. Ursula and the lamps are surrounded by a garland of two green branches. The Union Jack represents the country's ties to Britain, as it is a British Overseas Territory.

British Virgin Islands Flag History: The British Virgin Islands flag was adopted on November 15, 1960.

British Virgin Islands Flag Facts: The shield on the British Virgin Islands flag was a part of the coat of arms of the Leeward Islands. In 1960 a motto was added to the shield to make it the coat of arms of the Virgin Islands. Between 1956, when the federation of the Leeward Islands was dissolved, and in 1960 some flags were made with the shield but had no motto.

Virgin Islands (United States)

Virgin Islands (United States) Flag Meaning: The letters V and I, on either side of the eagle stand for the Virgin Islands. The three arrows being held by the eagle symbolize St. Croix, St. Thomas and St. John; which are the three main islands that make up the U.S. Virgin Islands. The white base of the flag symbolizes purity, and the eagle is displayed with the shield of the United States on its chest.

Virgin Islands (United States) Flag History: The US Virgin Islands flag was adopted on May 17, 1921. It is based on the United States coat of arms, also known as the Great Seal of the United States.

Virgin Islands (United States) Flag Facts: The US Virgin Islands were formerly called the Danish West Indies, but Denmark sold the islands to the U.S. in 1917 for 25 million dollars. Flags prior to 1917 incorporated the Danish flag in them.

Vincent-And-Grenadines

 


Wales

Welsh Flag Meaning: There are many legends, rumors and myths about the Welsh flag and none of them are official. It is believed the red dragon represents ancient warriors.

Welsh Flag History: The Welsh flag has been officially been recognized as the national flag of Wales since 1959, but the red dragon has been associated with Wales for hundreds of years. It is often claimed to be the oldest national flag still in use. The origin of the Welsh flag is now lost in history, rumors and myth, but a likely theory is that the Romans took the dragon emblem with them during their occupation of Britain, but it could be even older. The flag's green and white stripes were added by the House of Tudor, the Welsh dynasty that held the English throne from 1485 to 1603.

Welsh Flag Facts: In Welsh the flag is called 'Y Ddraig Goch' which means 'the red dragon'. Wales was united with England in 1284. Therefore there is no separate Welsh representation on the British Union Jack flag, which represents England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland.


Yemen

Yemen Flag Meaning: Red, white, black and green are called the pan-Arab colors and have been historically linked to the Arab people and Islamic faith for centuries. The red stripe represents the blood shed during the country's struggle for independence. The white symbolizes hope for the future, and the black stripe represents an end to the country's dark past.

Yemen Flag History: The Yemen flag was adopted on May 22, 1990 when North Yemen and South Yemen joined together. The red, white and black stripes were also present on the flags of North and South Yemen, and are traditional Arab colors. The Yemen flag is similar to the flag of the Arab Liberation Flag.

Yemen Flag Facts: The basic designs of the flags of North Yemen and South Yemen were similar as they both had red, white and black horizontal stripes, but each flag had its own symbol added to it.

Yugoslavia

 


Zaire

Zambia

Zambian Flag Meaning: The green base represents the country's vegetation and natural wealth. The red represents Zambia's struggle for independence. Black represents the people of Zambia, and the orange stripe stands for the nation's mineral wealth, especially copper. The eagle stands for freedom and is also in the country's coat of arms.

Zambian Flag History: The Zambian flag was originally adopted on October 24, 1964, and slightly modified in 1996. The country gained its independence from Britain at this time and changed its name from Northern Rhodesia to Zambia. The eagle originates from Zambia's coat of arms.

Zambian Flag Facts: A Zambian flag law states that the National Flag shall only be flown between the hours of sunrise and sunset.

Zimbabwe

Zimbabwe Flag Meaning:The red stripes represent the blood shed for independence; the yellow represents the country's mineral wealth; the green symbolizes Zimbabwe's agriculture and the land; the black stripe represents the African people; and the white stands for peace. The Great Zimbabwe bird is a national symbol and the red star behind the bird represents socialism.

Zimbabwe Flag History: The flag was adopted on April 18, 1980. Zimbabwe gained independence from Britain as Southern Rhodesia in 1965 and then gained independence from Rhodesia as Zimbabwe on April 17, 1980. The Zimbabwe flag incorporates the pan-African colors of red, yellow and green, which were carried by one of the nationalist groups fighting for Zimbabwe's independence. The pan-African colors are used by many African ex-colonies and stand for African independence and unity. It is believed the colors originated from the flag of Ethiopia, the oldest independent nation in Africa.

Zimbabwe Flag Facts: A law in Zimbabwe states that any person who burns, mutilates or otherwise insults the flag or shows it disrespect, shall be guilty of an offence and liable to a fine not exceeding one thousand dollars or to imprisonment for a period not exceeding two years.

 


 National Flags And Their Meanings Now Available in Arabic Here

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