National flag - Flag of Iceland

National flag  >  Flag of Iceland

Flag of Iceland

The flag of Iceland (íslenski fáninn) was officially described in Law No. 34, set out on 17 June 1944, the day Iceland became a republic. The law is entitled "The Law of the National Flag of Icelanders and the State Arms" and describes the Icelandic flag as follows:

The civil national flag of Icelanders is blue as the sky with a snow-white cross, and a fiery-red cross inside the white cross. The arms of the cross extend to the edge of the flag, and their combined width is 2⁄9, but the red cross 1⁄9 of the combined width of the flag. The blue areas are right angled rectangles, the rectilinear surfaces are parallel and the outer rectilinear surfaces as wide as them, but twice the length. The dimensions between the width and length are 18:25.

Iceland's first national flag was a white cross on a deep blue background. It was first shown in parade in 1897. The modern flag dates from 1915, when a red cross was inserted into the white cross of the original flag. This cross represents Christianity. It was adopted and became the national flag when Iceland gained independence from Denmark in 1918. For the Icelandic people the flag's colouring represents a vision of their country's landscape. The colours stand for 3 of the elements that make up the island. Red is the fire produced by the island's volcanoes, white recalls the ice and snow that covers Iceland, and blue is for the mountains of the island.

According to a legend described in Andrew Evans' Iceland, a red cloth with a white cross fell from the heavens, ensuring Danish victory at the Battle of Valdemar in the 13th century. Denmark then used the cross on its flag throughout its Nordic territories as a sign of divine right. Upon Iceland's independence, they continued to use the Christian symbol.

The civil flag of Iceland had been used as an unofficial symbol since 1913. It was officially adopted on 19 June 1915, to represent Iceland, and has been in use at sea since 1 December 1918, when Iceland became a separate Kingdom in the family of Nordic countries. Other symbolic meanings refer to the natural features of Iceland itself. Blue is the colour of the mountains when looked at from the coast, white represents the snow and ice covering the island for most of the year, and red the volcanoes on the island.

On 17 June 1944, the day Iceland became a republic, a law was issued that dealt with the national flag and the coat of arms. To date, this is the only major law to have been made about the flag and coat of arms, aside from two laws made in 1991: one that defines official flag days as well as the time of day the flag can be drawn, and another that defines the specific colours that the Icelandic flag is composed of (until then, the colouring had followed by convention; the new law set the common custom in stone).

The law describes the dimensions of both the common flag and special governmental flags used by embassies and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. It also goes into details of usage, such as how the flag should be attached in different situations such as on a flagpole, a house and on different kinds of ships.

According to the law, using the flag is a privilege and not a right. The owner must follow instructions on its usage and make sure that his or her flag is in mint condition regarding colouring, wear and tear. It also states that no-one shall disrespect the flag in act or word, subject to a fine or imprisonment of up to one year.

The original law stated in its seventh article that another law would be set regarding official flag days and the time of day that the flag may be flown, but such a law was not put into effect until almost 50 years later in 1991. This law states that the flag shall not be flown until 7 o'clock in the morning, that it should preferably not be flown beyond sunset but that it must not be flown beyond midnight. However, if the flag is raised at an outdoor assembly, an official gathering, funeral or a memorial the flag may be flown as long as the event lasts, though never beyond midnight.

According to Law No. 5 of 23 January 1991, the following are nationally sanctioned flag days. On these days the flag must be raised at official buildings, and those under the supervision of officials and special representatives of the state. Any additions to the list below can be decided each year by the Prime Minister's Office. On these days, the flag must be fully drawn, except on Good Friday where it must be drawn at half-mast.
National flag 
Flag of Iceland

Country - Iceland

Iceland (Ísland ) is a Nordic island country in the North Atlantic, with a population of and an area of 103000 km2, making it the most sparsely populated country in Europe. The capital and largest city is Reykjavík, with Reykjavík and the surrounding areas in the southwest of the country being home to over two-thirds of the population. Iceland is volcanically and geologically active. The interior consists of a plateau characterised by sand and lava fields, mountains, and glaciers, and many glacial rivers flow to the sea through the lowlands. Iceland is warmed by the Gulf Stream and has a temperate climate, despite a high latitude just outside the Arctic Circle. Its high latitude and marine influence keep summers chilly, with most of the archipelago having a tundra climate.

According to the ancient manuscript Landnámabók, the settlement of Iceland began in 874 AD when the Norwegian chieftain Ingólfr Arnarson became the first permanent settler on the island. In the following centuries, Norwegians, and to a lesser extent other Scandinavians, emigrated to Iceland, bringing with them thralls (i.e., slaves or serfs) of Gaelic origin. The island was governed as an independent commonwealth under the Althing, one of the world's oldest functioning legislative assemblies. Following a period of civil strife, Iceland acceded to Norwegian rule in the 13th century. The establishment of the Kalmar Union in 1397 united the kingdoms of Norway, Denmark, and Sweden. Iceland thus followed Norway's integration into that union, coming under Danish rule after Sweden's secession from the union in 1523. Although the Danish kingdom introduced Lutheranism forcefully in 1550, Iceland remained a distant semi-colonial territory in which Danish institutions and infrastructures were conspicuous by their absence. In the wake of the French Revolution and the Napoleonic Wars, Iceland's struggle for independence took form and culminated in independence in 1918 and the founding of a republic in 1944. Until the 20th century, Iceland relied largely on subsistence fishing and agriculture, and was among the poorest countries in Europe. Industrialisation of the fisheries and Marshall Plan aid following World War II brought prosperity and Iceland became one of the wealthiest and most developed nations in the world. In 1994, it became a part of the European Economic Area, which further diversified the economy into sectors such as finance, biotechnology, and manufacturing.

Language

Flag of Iceland (English)  Bandiera dell'Islanda (Italiano)  Vlag van IJsland (Nederlands)  Drapeau de l'Islande (Français)  Flagge Islands (Deutsch)  Bandeira da Islândia (Português)  Флаг Исландии (Русский)  Bandera de Islandia (Español)  Flaga Islandii (Polski)  冰島國旗 (中文)  Islands flagga (Svenska)  Drapelul Islandei (Română)  アイスランドの国旗 (日本語)  Прапор Ісландії (Українська)  Национално знаме на Исландия (Български)  아이슬란드의 국기 (한국어)  Islannin lippu (Suomi)  Bendera Islandia (Bahasa Indonesia)  Islandijos vėliava (Lietuvių)  Islands flag (Dansk)  Islandská vlajka (Česky)  İzlanda bayrağı (Türkçe)  Застава Исланда (Српски / Srpski)  Islandi lipp (Eesti)  Vlajka Islandu (Slovenčina)  Izland zászlaja (Magyar)  Zastava Islanda (Hrvatski)  ธงชาติไอซ์แลนด์ (ไทย)  Islandes karogs (Latviešu)  Σημαία της Ισλανδίας (Ελληνικά)  Quốc kỳ Iceland (Tiếng Việt) 
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