A flag is usually a piece of fabric that is rectangular in shape and will have a distinct design on it that will be used as a decoration, a symbol or as a signaling device. Flags have been used by people for more than 4000 years and the oldest flag that has been found is that of Iran from 3000BC. There have been many reconstructions of vexilloids that have been found in Egyptian tomb carving and ancient Greek coins, etc. The term Vexilloid is given to the first type of flag and the study of flags is known as Vexillology. The word vexilloid comes from the Latin word which means ‘guide’. The flags of early age were wooden or metal poles that had carvings on the top and it was only about 2000 years ago that fabric or a material similar to fabric was added to some of the vexilloids for decorative purposes. That led to the flags that we know of today and we have been using it for centuries.
Uses of flags
Flags have been used for a variety of purposes and the most important of them is to send out a signal. In ancient days knights used to carry flags so that they could be identified by friends and foe as it was impossible to know who was behind the heavily clad armors. There are flags that represent countries and provinces and there are some flags that are used for decorative purposes. Many organizations and companies around the world also have flags and often the symbol or the logo of the company forms a major portion of the flag. Clubs are also known to have their own flags and so do the various defense forces of the countries. All countries in the world have a flag of their own and the flags usually give out some information regarding the history of the country or the roots of the country.
Colors in flags
A flag is usually colorful and there will be a lot of different colors present in flags. Each color that is used in a flag represents something and has some special meanings. Let us have a look at what colors mean when used in flags.
- White – The color white symbolizes peace, truce or surrender
- Red – Red color denotes danger, power, revolution, courage or bloodshed that happens in a war
- Black – Black is a color that is used to denote death or mourning
- Green – Green color represents youth, safety, hope or land
- Yellow – Yellow color represents caution or gold
- Orange – The color orange is used to symbolize sacrifice or courage
Usage of flags
There are flags that are used for official purposes and there are many other flags that are used for decorative purposes. You have flags that represent seasons, festivals, special occasions, sports clubs, sports organizations, religion, heroes, music and a lot more. The national flag of a country will have certain restrictions with regard to usage and the restrictions tend to differ from one country to the other. If wrongly used, there could be legal proceedings instigated against you for hurting the sentiment of the country or for disrespecting the flag. Therefore if you are planning to use the flag for any occasion, do check out the do’s and don’ts while using the flag to be on the safe side.