Top 10 Countries That Changed Their Flag Without Anyone Noticing

Tags: #myanmar ,   #venezuela ,   #montenegro ,   #honduras ,   #iraq

Dan N. Scarborough

Dan N. Scarborough

Last updated:  2023-03-31 18:00:09

One of a nation's most identifying symbols is its flag. Every nation has a unique one with a design that reflects its wealth, history, culture, values, and aspirations. Although many countries have only ever had one flag throughout their histories, several have had multiple approved by their governments. To represent a change in ideology or leadership is a frequent justification for a nation changing its flag. These are the ten nations that outgrew their flags and adopted new ones, and you probably never noticed it.

10. Libya

Although Gaddafi fell, the Libyan flag still stands

Since 1951, when Libya gained independence, many governments have flown numerous flags over the nation. Soon after the nation obtained independence, the royal government unveiled and adopted the first official flag of Libya on December 24, 1951. The Arab Liberation Flag, however, was put in its place during the coup d'état of 1969.

During his 34-year rule, Muammar Gaddafi created a green-field flag based on his philosophical ideals, which became the country's flag. The National Transitional Council administration opted to adopt the original 1951 flag to serve as Libya's national flag on February 17, 2011, after Gaddafi's rule ended during the 2011 Arab Spring.

9. Montenegro

The current Montenegro flag was inspired by why their old ruler

On July 13, 2004, Montenegro adopted its present national flag. The flag has a solid red field with a golden stripe encircling it, and the nation's coat of arms is charged in the middle. A horizontal and a vertical rectangle are the two shapes available for the flag.

The flag's design was influenced by one previously flown in the nation in the late 19th century under Prince Danilo's rule. The last official flag, with red, blue, and white stripes, was in use since 1994.

8. Georgia

The current Georgian flag was a Medieval banner

One of the country's national emblems is the Five Cross Flag, the national flag of Georgia. On January 25, 2004, the Georgian government accepted the new banner, which replaced the old one, which had been in use since 1990.

Early in the 20th century, the preceding flag served as the Democratic Republic of Georgia's official flag. Still, it swiftly came to symbolize the tumultuous time surrounding the fall of the Eastern Bloc. When the current flag was adopted to represent the Rose Revolution in the twenty-first century, it garnered renewed appeal. The current flag was initially a banner used by the medieval Kingdom of Georgia.

7. Iraq

Iraqi painted this flag in distinctive colors of Arab Liberation

On January 22, 2008, Iraq adopted its current national flag, which bears the distinctive colors of the Arab Liberation flag seen in the majority of North African and Middle Eastern nations. The horizontal red, white, and black stripes that make up the tricolor are oriented from top to bottom. The Takbir is inscribed in green Arabic on the flag as well.

The main difference between the present flag and the previous one was the type of script used. The current flag uses a Kufic script, whereas the Takbir on the previous flag was supposedly written in Saddam Hussein's handwriting.

6. Myanmar

Changing the socialistic regime also changed the flag

On October 21, 2010, Myanmar embraced its current national flag after adopting a new constitution and changing its name from Burma to Myanmar.

The colors of the flag, which are horizontal bands of yellow, green, and red with a white star in the middle, stand for unity, calmness, and resolve. The socialist flag, established in 1974, was replaced by the current one. Following that, the authorities ordered the burning of every socialist flag.

5. Rwanda

Almost any flag looks better than the one with big R in the middle

Red, yellow, and green as the pan-African colors were used to proclaim the Republic of Rwanda on January 28, 1961. A black "R" was added to the center of the flag in late September 1961 to set it apart from Guinea's otherwise identical banner.

The flag remained unchanged when the country eventually gained independence from Belgium on July 1, 1962. Nothing happened even when the Tutsi-dominated army ousted the Hutu government in 1994 after the massacre of countless Tutsis. Yet, on December 31, 2001, a new national flag was raised to foster a sense of solidarity, respect for labor, heroism, and self-assurance. The rich foliage of Rwanda is depicted in its design, bathed in the sun's yellow light.

4. Venezuela

Hugo Chavez redesigned the Venezuelan flag to look like the original one

The official Venezuelan flag has three equal yellow, blue, and red stripes, a set of stars in the middle, and the country's coat of arms on the upper left edge. The old flag was changed once the current one was introduced in 2006.

Hugo Chavez, the president, came up with the idea for the present flag, which resembles the nation's original 1811 flag quite a bit. The Province of Guyana, initially a province in Venezuela until independence, is represented by an additional eighth star in the 2006 design.

3. Lesotho

Lesotho changed its flag to celebrate the nation's independence

The horizontal hues of blue, white, and green are aligned top to bottom on the official flag of Lesotho, which also has a traditional hat in the center. The flag was approved in 2006 to mark the nation's 40th anniversary of independence.

The flag was chosen from among four suggested designs after the measure to replace it was adopted by the Lesotho Senate and the National Assembly on September 18, 2006, respectively. The new flag replaced the previous one, unveiled in 1987 following a military takeover.

2. Malawi

The new flag lasted for only two years before the old flag was reinstated

The current Malawian national flag was chosen on May 28, 2012, and it was the nation's first flag following its independence from the United Kingdom on July 6, 1964. As the flag was created when many African countries were obtaining independence, the rising red sun represented the dawn of freedom and hope across the continent.

However, President Bingu Wa Mutharika changed the original independence flag in 2010, replacing the red sun rising in the center with the full white sun. After President Joyce Banda was elected in 2012, the original independence flag was reinstated.

1. Honduras 

Honduras flag changed a billion times, and you probably had no clue about it

Throughout its history, the Republic of Honduras' national flag has undergone a few design changes, but for the most part, it has remained the same. Up to 1898, these flags were in use. After that, a new flag with a triband design and five stars was adopted.

These stars, though, were yellow rather than blue. Its flag was in use until 1949 when blue stars replaced the yellow ones in favor of a new design. The United Provinces of Central America's flag shares the same hues and design as the Honduran flag. The final change came in 2022, as the colors changed to turquoise. Yet, we might have noticed it if they managed to qualify for the 2022 FIFA World Cup.

Since national flags serve a symbolic political function, many current designs have evolved significantly. A nation's flag's colors and symbols must be carefully picked to represent that country best—the design changes along with the idea of identity. Looking at the modifications made can reveal a lot about a country's history. This is especially true for nations that only recently attained independence.

Did you know about all these flag changes? Which flags would you add to the list?



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