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Random Surprising Meanings Behind Countries' Unique Flags

  • American Samoa on Random Surprising Meanings Behind Countries' Unique Flags

    (#10) American Samoa

    The Samoan Islands were settled an estimated 2,000 years ago by Polynesian explorers. Fast-forward to the late 19th century when the colonial powers of the age were breaking the islands up into spheres of influence. The United States and Germany divided the islands between themselves in 1899, with American Samoa remaining an unincorporated territory to this day.

    Until 1960, American Samoa flew the traditional Stars and Stripes. In creating its own flag, the territory looked to evoke American symbolism with its use of red, white and blue, and the inclusion of the American bald eagle. In a spin on the Great Seal of the United States, the flag's eagle holds in its talons two Samoan symbols of power: a battle club known as a fa'alaufa'i and a coconut fiber fly-whisk called a fue. These are supposed to represent America's guardianship over the territory.

  • Nepal on Random Surprising Meanings Behind Countries' Unique Flags

    (#1) Nepal

    Nepal posseses the only flag in the world that doesn't conform to a rectangular shape. The Nepalese flag is made of two overlapping triangular pendants, which may represent the peaks of the Himalayas. The red coloring of the flag is the same shade as Nepal's national flower, the rhododendron, and is outlined in blue, which represents harmony.

    There are varying explanations for Nepal's uniquely-shaped flag. The government's official position is that, instead of mountains, the two triangles represent the nation's two primary religions, Hinduism and Buddhism. The crescent moon in the upper triangle stands for both tranquility and the cool shade in the shadow of the country's enormous mountains, while the sun represents the heat of the lowland parts of Nepal. The sun and moon are also supposed to stand for the nation's aspirations toward longevity, or the desire to exist as long as the moon and the sun themselves.

  • Bhutan on Random Surprising Meanings Behind Countries' Unique Flags

    (#2) Bhutan

    • Thimphu

    This flag features a yellow and orange background divided in half diagonally, and a giant thunder dragon known as a Druk, which is a major part of Bhutanese mythology. The Druk is entirely white, symbolizing purity, and clutches a norbu (or a jewel believed to have magical wish-fulfilling properties) in each claw as a metaphor for the nation's wealth.

    The background colors symbolize the two forces in the lives of the Bhutanese, with orange representing the Buddhist spiritual tradition of the nation and the yellow honoring the authority of the ruling dynasty and the Dragon King of Bhutan.

  • Mozambique on Random Surprising Meanings Behind Countries' Unique Flags

    (#14) Mozambique

    This southern African nation has the distinction of being one of only two countries in the world with a gun on its flag (along with Guatemala). There is a lot going on in Mozambique's flag. In the triangular section on the left side of the flag, there is an AK-47 that represents resistance, independence and the country's willingness to defend its sovereignty by force. The AK is crossed with a gardening hoe, which represents the nation's agriculture. They are both above a book, symbolizing the importance of education. Those symbols all rest over a yellow star, which represents the ideals of Marxism and the nation's support for internationalism.

    Five colors represent specific aspects of the country itself. The green band represents the natural riches of the country's land, the thin white bands are symbolic of peace and freedom, the black band honors the continent of Africa, the thick yellow band pays tribute to the country's mineral resources, and the red panel represents Mozambique's bloody struggle for independence. 

  • Mexico on Random Surprising Meanings Behind Countries' Unique Flags

    (#4) Mexico

    Americans may be familiar with Mexico's green, white and red flag, but many may not realize the eagle in the middle is actually eating a snake. The image, from Mexico's coat of arms, pays tribute to an Aztec legend. As the story goes, the wandering Aztec people were told to settle where they witnessed an eagle feasting on a writhing snake while sitting atop a cactus. The nomadic Aztecs supposedly saw this happen in the place where they founded Tenochtitlan, which is now Mexico City.

    The colors of the flag hold great significance to the country. Green symbolizes hope, in the form of its fertile soile; white is for purity and the Roman Catholic religion; and red represents the blood shed for the nation's independence.

  • Isle of Man on Random Surprising Meanings Behind Countries' Unique Flags

    (#9) Isle of Man

    This flag depicts three armored legs joined at the thigh and arranged in a circle. Based on the Celtic sun symbol known as the triskelion, the image is referred to as the Legs of Man. It is based on the coat of arms of the Norse King of Mann, a royal title held by multiple rulers between 1200 and 1500.

    While it's unknown exactly how the Legs of Man came to represent the king on his coat of arms, they were adopted to represent the Isle of Man on the nation's flag in 1932. Before then, the country only used the Union Jack as a member of the British commonwealth. To this day, the Isle of Man's flag is still required to fly lower on the mast than the Union Jack.

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About This Tool

Each country’s national flag has its unique and undisputed images and colors with cultural characteristics. The duty of any national flag is to pay tribute to the history and culture it represents. These specially designed flags show the rich and interesting characteristics of their respective countries. There are various explanations for the flag of each country. For example, Nepal has the only flag in the world that is not rectangular. The flag of Nepal is composed of two overlapping triangles, possibly representing the peaks of the Himalayas.

Do you remember any special countries' unique flags? Our random tool would introduce some surprising meanings of them, welcome to check the interesting collection and share this tool with friends.

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