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Today in the world there are more than 200 states recognized by the world community. From this variegated variety, we have selected the most unusual such state symbols.
Running flag. This is the symbol of the Isle of Man. This territory is located in the Irish Sea between England, Scotland and Ireland. The island is the crown domain of the British Column. The flag is a rectangular red canvas, in the center of which is the national symbol - the triskelion.
These are three running legs, which are connected together and thus form something like a star. Translated from Greek, the symbol means "walking on three legs." This is one of the most ancient symbols invented by man. Images of the triskelion were found in prehistoric caves in northern Italy, as well as on Greek vases and coins of the 6th-8th centuries. This symbol is found in Norway and Sicily.
The inhabitants of the Isle of Man claim that the triskelion came to them from the Scandinavian countries. Be that as it may, but since the 13th century it has been the national symbol of the island. And the meaning of the local triskelion is best explained by the national motto: "Wherever you throw it, it will stand." In other words, legs running in a circle symbolize development, stability and movement. The island's flag is considered one of the oldest in the world. The last time it changed was at the end of the 13th century. It was officially approved on August 27, 1971.
Flag looking to the sky. This flag, like the country itself, appeared relatively recently. The state symbol of Kyrgyzstan was approved on March 3, 1992. It is officially described as a red canvas with a round sun disk in the center.
Forty golden rays evenly depart from the luminary. The red monochromaticity of this flag expresses courage and valor, and the sun bathing in its own rays - peace and wealth. Forty rays, collected together - these are forty ancient tribes, which gathered and created the now united state of Kyrgyzstan.
But the most interesting detail of this flag is the red tunduk inside the solar disk. Translated from Kyrgyz, this word means the roof of a yurt or north. In the dwellings of this people, he calls the lattice hole at the top of the yurt, which is necessary for the air and light to get inside. On the flag, such an element symbolizes the ancestral home in the broadest sense of the word and the Universe around us.
The most humane. The flag of Switzerland is the second in the world among states that is not rectangular. This symbol looks like a red square with a white straight cross in the center. In this case, the ends of the crosses do not reach the edges of the panel. The flag was officially approved as a national symbol in the 19th century.
The Swiss flag was born from the coat of arms of the canton of Schwyz. It became one of three such associations that created the Swiss Confederation in 1291. For the first time a banner in this form was seen in 1339 during the Battle of Laupen. Only then were the crosses narrower, reaching the edges of the flag.
It is worth noting that the color of the Swiss flag has not changed since the time of the Holy Roman Empire, but the shape has nevertheless improved. In the days of the Confederation, the flag was triangular, later it turned into a white cross, made up of five identical squares, on a red background. And only in 1889 the flag took its modern form.
It is the Swiss flag that can be considered the most humane. After all, his previous version with a cross made of squares became the prototype of the famous symbol of the Red Cross. The colors were just swapped. Thus, a tribute was paid to the founder of this charitable organization, Swiss citizen Jean Henri Dunant.
The most lost in the ocean. The state of Guam is located on the Mariana Islands. His flag is a blue cloth bordered with a red border. The blue, which is logical, symbolizes the Pacific Ocean, which surrounds the island on all sides. But the red border is the blood shed by the inhabitants during the occupations by Spain and Japan. First, a version of the flag without a red border was approved, it happened on July 4, 1917. And in 1948, a modern version of this state symbol saw the light.
In the center of the flag is the coat of arms of Guam itself. In shape, it is very reminiscent of the primitive basalt tool, which the locals used in war and hunting. In the middle of the elongated oval is the bay of the city of Hagatna, the capital of Guam. A proa boat floats in it, which is very popular among the peoples of Samoa and Polynesia. Also, in the center of the flag, looking closely, you can see a coast with a coconut palm, a local river and a rock. In the same place the name of the country is written in red letters - GUAM.
It should be noted that the small coat of arms is very symbolic. For example, the proa boat represents the courage of the island's indigenous people. Once upon a time, aborigines boldly roamed the vast expanses of the Pacific Ocean on it. The river flowing into the ocean speaks of the willingness of local residents to share the resources of their land with others. The beach symbolizes the devotion of the same indigenous population to their homeland and nature.
The rock is the promise of residents to pass on their culture, language and heritage to future generations. The coconut tree growing on the barren sand speaks to the resilience and determination of the inhabitants of the island. The curved tree trunk speaks of the trials that the citizens of Guam had to endure. Blue, on the other hand, testifies to the inseparable connection of the island with the sky and sea.
The most non-standard flag. Usually national flags are rectangular in shape. But there is a flag that does not obey the generally accepted canons of vexillology (this science studies flags and pennants). The unusual symbol belongs to Nepal. It consists of two red triangles located one below the other. The entire panel has a blue border.
The choice of colors is quite justified - red-blue is considered the national color of the country, and blue symbolizes peace. The upper triangle contains a white image of the moon, and the lower one shows the sun. Previously, these celestial bodies on the flag were also depicted with faces. The moon and sun depicted here indicate that the country of Nepal will exist as long as they themselves.
Such a flag is said to be a combination of two pennants belonging to the Rana dynasty. Representatives of this family ruled the country in ancient times. It is also possible to adopt the triangular shape of the flag, as the symbol of the Himalayas. Two triangles can speak of the unity in the country of two great religions - Buddhism and Hinduism. The country's unusual flag was approved on December 16, 1962.
Ohio horse chestnut. Although this flag is not a national one, it can easily compete with the Nepalese symbol in its originality. The flag of the American state of Ohio was approved on July 10, 1902. It stands out among the symbols of other states at least in that its shape is not classic rectangular. It is generally difficult to describe. The upper and lower edges taper from the pole to the edge, while at the end of the flag there is generally an acute-angled cutout.
But the symbolism is quite understandable. The large blue triangle speaks of the mountains and valleys of the states, the stripes are roads and rivers, and also the five states of the Northwest Territory, which includes Ohio. 17 stars indicate the state is the 17th member to join the union. In the middle of the triangle there is a white circle with a red center, which gave the nickname to the banner - "Horse Chestnut". This is actually a symbolic representation of the first letter of the state's name.
The most floral flag. The Norfolk Self-Governing Territory is located in the Pacific Ocean east of Australia. The flag of this small country is subtly similar to the Canadian one. There are also colored stripes along the edges and a white field in the middle. It is there that the main symbol of the country is located. But if in Canada it is a maple leaf, then in Norfolk there was a place on the flag for a whole tree. It shows a local pine tree that grows only on this island. The green fields on the sides of the flag are also dedicated to the rich local flora.
In its modern form, this symbol was approved quite recently - in 1980. But it was formed in the century before last. At the same time, the placid green of the flag quite strongly contrasts with the history of the island. Norfolk was discovered in 1774 by the famous captain James Cook. For a long time, criminals from England and Australia were exiled to the island. As a result, this area turned into one large colony, which existed until 1854. Then the prison was closed, and completely civilians were brought to Norfolk from the nearby islands.
The most serpentine flag. The island of Martinique, which is part of the Lesser Antilles, has its own official flag. The name is the French tricolor, which is not surprising given the fact that it is an overseas department of a European republic. But the historical flag of Martinique, which now has an unofficial status, is much more original. He was accepted on August 4, 1766.
The flag represents the naval pennant of France at the time - a white cross on a blue background. On the margins there are four Ls, which in this variant are stylized as local rattlesnakes. It should be noted that it is no coincidence that these reptiles were on the flag - there are indeed quite a few of them on the island. Moreover, local legends say that the snakes were brought to Martinique by colonists-planters in order to survive from the forests of fugitive slaves.
The most intense. This historic flag also belongs to the French-dependent territory. These are the islands of Saint Pierre and Miquelon, located in the Atlantic Ocean. The flag is essentially a heraldic coat of arms. The main part with the ship means the ocean and the ship of the discoverer Jacques Cartier.
There are three emblems on the pole. They remind of the first colonists of these lands - the Basques, Brittany and Normans. Accordingly, the banner depicts the flag of the Basque Country Icurrinha, part of the flag of Brittany "ermine fur" and the symbol of Normandy, two leopards on a red background.
The most international flag. At first it may seem that someone just took, and just for fun, connected the flags of Great Britain and the EU in the form of a composition similar to the American one. In fact, this is the real flag of the Cook Islands state formation. These lands lie in the South Pacific. Although the islands were named after the English navigator, he himself was not their discoverer, calling them the Hervey Islands. And the Spaniards discovered these pieces of land in the ocean.
Its current name of the island was obtained thanks to the Russian navigator Ivan Kruzenshtern. The flag clearly shows that the islands have a colonial past. The British blue naval flag speaks of ties with New Zealand. The Cook Islands are freely associated with her. The stars are a symbol of faith in God, as well as the power that guides the inhabitants through history. 15 stars are 15 islands of the archipelago. Collecting them in a circle speaks of the strength and unity of the local people.
The most unearthly flag. If all the unofficial flags still represent someone specific, then this one is not tied to any earthly territory. It is still unknown when exactly man will set foot on the planet Mars. But it is quite possible that at that very moment in his hand there will be an original flag specially prepared by earthlings for a new planet.
This laconic tricolor does not and cannot yet have any official status. After all, while international law does not allow us to appropriate celestial bodies, which means they do not need flags yet. But this flag has already been approved by a non-profit organization for the development of the Red Planet. Who knows, maybe the Mars Community messenger will go there first?
This unofficial flag symbolizes the future of the planet. Red is Mars itself, which it is now. Green and blue are the stages of the possible development of the planet by humanity, if we have enough strength and patience for this. I must say that these colors of the flag and their meaning are directly related to the famous trilogy of American science fiction writer Kim Stanley Robinson Red Mars "," Green Mars "," Blue Mars ". And although the flag has an unofficial status, it is already developing over quite official institutions.
You can see the Martian banner over the Flash Mars Arctic Research Station on the Canadian island of Devon and at some of the facilities in the town of the Martian Desert Research Station in Utah. In 1999, the flag has already been in space, so far only in low-earth orbit, together with one of the American shuttles.