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Flags of the World: The Stories Behind Them

FLAGS OF THE WORLD: THE STORIES BEHIND THEM UNITED KINGDOM USA THE UNION JACK THE STARS AND STRIPES Blue Red White Blue Red White The flag consists of the red cross of Saint George There have been 28 incarnations of the famous (patron saint of England), the Cross of St Patrick (patron saint of Ireland), and the Saltire of Saint 'Stars and Stripes' since 1775, each with differing numbers of stars and stripes. Today's version has been in use since Independence Day 1960, and consists of 13 horizontal stripes representing the Andrew (patron saint of Scotland). Wales, while part of the UK, is not represented in the Union Jack, as at the time the flag was designed Wales thirteen colonies that declared independence to was part of the Kingdom of England. become the first states of the Union, and 50 stars representing the 50 current states of the USA. FRANCE CANADA TRICOLOUR THE MAPLE LEAF / L'UNIFOLIÉ Blue White Red Red White The white of the French flag represents the King, The famous Maple Leaf flag has only been and is also the traditional colour of the House of Canada's official flag since 1965, following serious Bourbon who ruled France until the French national debate sparked by then Prime Minister Revolution. The red and blue represent the city of Lester B. Pearson. The iconic 11 point maple leaf flag is so synonymous with Canada that it has its own 'National Flag of Canada Day' every Paris; these were the colours of the revolutionaries who stormed the Bastille in 1789. February. AUSTRALIA SOUTH AFRICA FLAG OF AUSTRALIA FLAG OF SOUTH AFRICA Blue Red White Green Black White Gold Red Blue Australia's flag is a strong nod towards the Following Nelson Mandela's release from prison in Commonwealth, featuring the Union Jack in the 1990 a new national South African flag was canton, and a large white seven-pointed star commissioned. The black, green and yellow were known as the Commonwealth Star in the lower left taken from the banner of Mandela's African quarter. The remaining stars are a representation National Congress, while the red, white and blue of the Southern Cross constellation, which is easily were taken from the old Flag of Transvaal. The Y shape is said to reference the convergence of visible from Australia. cultures in the nation. GERMANY NEPAL BUNDESFLAGGE (FEDRAL FLAG) FLAG OF NEPAL Black Red Gold Blue Red White The German association with the colours black, The unusual shape symbolises the peaks of the red and yellow dates back as far as 1840, when the Frankfurt Parliament declared black-red-gold as the official colours of Germany. The colours are Himalayas, with the sun and moon symbols representing calm and resolve. Its crimson red is the colour of the rhododendron, the country's said to represent democracy, and the current form of the flag was introduced following national flower, and the blue border signifies peace. Germany's reunification in 1990. NIGERIA CHINA FLAG OF NIGERIA WU XĪNG HÓNG QÍ (FIVE-STAR RED FLAG) Green White Red Gold The green stripes represent Nigeria's wealth, lush The red represents the communist revolution in vegetation and agriculture industry, with the their desire for peace and China, while the five stars and their relationship represent the unity of the Chinese the leadership of the Communist Party of China white indic under harmony. The flag was designed by a 23-year old student Michael Taiwo Akinkunmi and was first (CPC). The orientation of the stars (four smaller officially used on October 1st 1960. stars around a bigger star) represent unity around a greater good. BRAZIL AUSTRIA THE AURIVERDE (THE GOLD AND GREEN) FLAG OF AUSTRIA Green Yellow Blue White Red White The motto on the Brazilian flag "Ordem e Leopold V, Duke of Austria (a.k.a. Leopold the Progresso" translates to "Order and Progress", and is inspired by French philosopher Auguste Virtuous) is credited with the design back in 1230, the legend stating that upon returning from war Comte's motto of 'positivism' - "Love as a his white battledress was soaked with blood. principle and order as the basis; progress as the goal". The white stars represent the night sky over When he removed his belt, the cloth underneath was still white! Rio de Janeiro. DENMARK BANGLADESH DANNEBROG THE AURIVERDE (THE GOLD AND GREEN) Red White Red Green The Danish flag represents Christianity and is Known for the red circle being offset so that it credited to influencing other Nordic countries appears centred when flying on a mast, the Bangladesh flag represents the lushness of the (Sweden, Norway, Finland and Iceland) to adopt similar styles on their own flags. The Dannebrog Country (the green), as well as the blood of those who died for independence (the red). The red disc flag is generally considered to be the oldest flag in the world, dating back to 1219. as represents the rising Bengal sun. GREECE MALAYSIA I GALANOLEFKI (THE BLUE AND WHITE) JALUR GEMILANG Blue White Blue Yellow Red White The meaning behind the 9 stripes is supposed to With nods towards the East India Company flag, represent the nine syllables of the phrase "Eleveepía ń Oávatoç" ("Freedom or Death"), while the Malaysia flag is comprised of 14 alternating red and white stripes which represent the equal the white cross in the top left hand corner status of the 13 Malaysian member states and the symbolises Eastern Orthodox Christianity, the federal government. The yellow crescent represents Islam, the official religion of the country. established religion of Greece. GHANA MOZAMBIQUE FLAG OF GHANA FLAG OF MOZAMBIQUE Red Yellow Black Green Green Black White Gold Red The red represents the blood of those who died in The Flag of Mozambique is famous for having an the country's struggle for independence, the gold AK-47 featured, symbolising the country's bloody represents the mineral wealth of the country, the struggle for independence. The open book green symbolises the country's rich forests and natural wealth, and the black star is the symbol of African emancipation. symbolises the importance of education, the hoe the country's strong agriculture, and the star symbolises Marxism and internationalism. IRAN BOTSWANA THREE COLOUR FLAG FLAG OF BOTSWANA Green White Red Blue White Black In Iranian culture, green symbolises growth and One of the few African flags that utilises neither the Pan-African colours nor those of a political happiness, while white stands for peace and red for bravery, fire and love. Written in white and party, the Botswana flag colours are the same as repeated eleven times on the inner edges of each those on the country's coat of arms. The blue the green and the red band is the phrase "Allahu represents water and the black and white Akbar" (Allah is the greatest) in a stylised version of the Kufic script. symbolise racial harmony, and are also influenced by the country's national animal, the zebra. VIETNAM NEW ZEALAND CỜ ĐỎ SAO VÀNG ("RED FLAG WITH A GOLD STAR") FLAG OF NEW ZEALAND Red Yellow Blue Red White The vibrant red is a nod towards communism and New Zealand's flag, like Australia's is a legacy to also represents the blood spilled in the country's the British Commonwealth and contains the bloody fight for independence. The 5 points of the Union Jack in the canton. Where it differs from the Flag of Australia, it has red stars representing yellow star represent the union of workers, soldiers, peasants, young people and intellectuals. the Southern Cross (rather than white), and the red of the flag is a deeper shade. INDIA BAHAMAS TIRANGĀ ("TRICOLOUR") FLAG OF BAHAMAS Saffron White Green Blue Aquamarine Gold Black When introduced in 1931, the green stripe The gold stripe represents the golden sand of the represented Muslims while the saffron represented islands' beaches, and the aquamarine the Hindus, with the white stripe symbolising the Caribbean Sea that borders them. The black desired peace between them. The blue wheel in the centre has 24 spokes which represent the 24 hours of the day. symbolises the strength and vigour of the Bahamian people, while the triangle represents the desire and passion of the people to make the most of their natural resources. Sources JUST THE FLIGHT NK NV

Flags of the World: The Stories Behind Them

shared by justtheflight on Jul 29
This infographic explores how many of the worlds most interesting flags came to be and describes the stories behind their unique colours and designs.


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