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Iceland Flag Meaning and History

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Icelandic Flag Description:
The flag of Iceland consists of a blue base with a red cross (Scandinavian) bordered in white. The vertical stripe of the cross is towards the left side of the flag, leaving the cross uncentered.

Icelandic Flag Meaning:
The cross on the Icelandic flag represents Iceland's Scandinavian connection. The Icelandic flag was designed by Matthias Thordarson. He explained the colors as representing blue for the mountains, white for ice and snow and red for fire and lava as Iceland has much volcanic activity. Blue and white are the country's traditional colors. The Icelandic flag is a reversed version of the Norwegian flag and it reflects Iceland's early ancestral link to Norway. It also incorporates the red and white of Denmark's flag.

Icelandic Flag History:
The Icelandic flag was adopted on June 19, 1915. The King of Denmark approved, in principle, the adoption of an Icelandic national flag in 1913 and this led to the introduction of the current flag design. The Icelandic flag was used unofficially since 1913. The Icelandic flag remained unchanged when Iceland became a self-governing state in 1918 and then an independent republic in 1944.

Interesting Icelandic Flag Facts:
According to Icelandic law the use of the flag is a privilege and not a right, therefore the owner of the flag must follow instructions on its usage and make sure that the Icelandic flag is in excellent condition. The law also states that nobody shall disrespect the Icelandic flag physically or verbally. If they do the person faces a fine or imprisonment up to one year.
Law also states that the Icelandic flag shall not be flown before 7am and it should preferably not be flown after sunset but must not be flown past midnight. However if the Icelandic flag is flown at an outdoor assembly, an official gathering, funeral or a memorial the flag may be flown after sunset or as long as the event lasts, though never past midnight.

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