The first country flag that was ever flown was in the 18th century. Back then it was done to proclaim possession and sovereignty over the land. Now, things are a bit different.
Today a country flag is a symbol of the nation. Very often, a country flag is referred to as a country’s visual representation. And while today flags have a lot to do with the country’s identity, they are also deeply linked to the culture, history, and conflict of the country. A country’s flag is an extricable part of the culture of the country and very often evokes emotion and pride in the countrymen.
What Do The Colors And Symbols On A Country Flag Mean?
A lot of thought, time and effort go into designing a country flag as it is not just a piece of cloth but is sacred to the country’s identity. The colors and the symbols on each flag mean something.
For example, Union Jack (or Union Flag, as it referred to as sometimes), the British flag combines aspects of three older flags. The old flags it combines are the red saltire of St. Patrick, the white saltire of St. Andrew and the red cross of St George.
These three flags are combined to show the union of Ireland, Scotland, as well as England (respectively). The National Flag of Mozambique has an AK47 on it. Also, this was done to signify the struggle of the people to achieve independence. The flag of the United States of America has 13 stripes and 50 stars. Hence, the stripes are a symbol of the 13 colonies and the stars symbolize the 50 states of the country.
Universal Symbols In Country Flags
Even the colors on the flag matter. For example, the flag of the USA has the colors Red, White, and Blue. Also, the red is a symbol for hardiness and valor, the white is to represent purity and innocence and the blue is to symbolize vigilance and justice.
While every flag is unique to its country and has a lot of history, culture, and meaning attached to it, there are still certain symbols that are universal and have a common meaning no matter which flag they are found on.
1. The Sun – The Sun is used as a symbol of unity and energy. Japan, as well as Argentina both, use the Sun as a part of their national flags.
2. The Moon – The Moon is distinguished from the Sun by making the shape of the Moon into a crescent. It is a powerful symbol that is on the National flags of Turkey, Singapore, Tunisia, etc. When combined with a star, it symbolized divinity as well as is often used in Islam.
3. Cross – The Cross is considered to be a symbol of faith and finds a place on multiple Country Flags such as England, Sweden, Norway, etc.
4. Triangle – This shape too has a spiritual and religious connotation but also symbolizes strength and power. The three points of a triangle represent the Father, the Son, as well as the Holy Spirit. Countries like the Bahamas, Sudan, Eritrea use this shape on their flags.
Every flag carries with itself a country’s true identity, it’s culture as well as past. It is very interesting to study what each flag is symbolizing so as to get the true picture of what the country stands for.