World Facts

What Do The Colors And Symbols Of The Flag Of Thailand Mean?

The flag of Thailand was adopted on September 28, 1917.

The Kingdom of Thailand is a South East Asian nation. Bangkok is the nation’s capital city and the country boasts of having over 69 million inhabitants. Buddhism serves as the main religion and its temples known as Wat are symbols of majestic architecture and opulence. Agriculture serves as the backbone of its vibrant economy. The country is run by a constitutional monarch system of government whereby the Prime Minister heads the government in the country, while the hereditary monarch is the Chief of State. As a tropical country, Thailand is draped with breathtaking coastlines and diverse ecosystems making it a tourist magnet. It is the most visited country in South East Asia and has the baptized moniker of the land of smiles.

Colors of the National Flag of Thailand

The flag of Thailand has 3 main colors of red, blue, and white. In the local Thai language, the flag is known as Thong Trairong, which translates to the Tricolor flag. The flag was decreed by King Rama VI as the official flag for Thailand in 1917. The flag features five horizontal stripes of three colors in the order of red, white, blue, white, and red again. The colors of the national flag each have their own distinct meaning. The red stands for both people and blood symbolizing life, the white stands for the Buddhist religion, and the blue stands for the monarchy.

History of the Flag of Thailand

The national flag of Thailand has undergone various changes throughout the years. When the country was known as Siam, between 1656 and 1790, the flag was plain red in color. No symbol was present. However, the look was not distinct enough to be used in international relations and therefore a symbol was to soon follow suit. Between 1790 and1820, a white Chakra was placed at the center of the flag. A chakra is an Indian symbol and the word in Hindu Sanskrit means ‘circle’. In the esoteric religions of India, a chakra is a psychic energy center. Between 1820 and 1855, a white elephant was placed at the center of the Chakra. The elephant has been viewed as the national animal of Thailand. From 1855 to 1893, the chakra was removed leaving the white elephant solely placed at the center of the flag and strategically facing the hoist. From 1893 to 1898, the elephant receives a royal makeover with adornments placed on its head and back.

The Current National Flag of Thailand

Between 1898 and 1917, the flag saw the addition of two new colors, white and blue, and the removal of the elephant from the flag. The blue was meant to honor the Allied Countries during the war. Interestingly, the color blue was also adopted as the national color of Thailand. The new colors were placed as stripes running horizontally across the flag. The sequence of the colors which stands to date is a red stripe, followed by a white stripe then a blue stripe, white and a red stripe again. The three colors stand for Nation-Religion-Monarchy. The red stand for the people, white for religion, and blue for the monarchy.

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