Flags of the World: Sweden

swedish flag

March 02, 2017

Taking a break from custom flag talk, we’re revisiting our Flags of the World series to bring another installment. This week, we'll be breaking down the Swedish flag, one of the most simple and straightforward flags of the world. Instantly recognizable, the strength of the Swedish flag is its iconic aesthetic. With this flag’s colored history, we had to pass it along to you.


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Let’s talk about the Swedish flag!


Design and Symbology


The Swedish flag is blue with a yellow Nordic cross. The intersection of the cross is slightly to the left of the center. From mapsoftheworld.com “The blue represents truth, loyalty, and justice, and the yellow symbolizes generosity. The Swedish cross is said to have come from Eric the Holy, who was king of Sweden, who saw the gold cross in the sky. The cross is a symbol of Christianity, used to express the religious history of the nation and its early leaders.”


History


The origin of the Swedish flag is a bit murky. The story of King Eric’s revelation is mostly considered Swedish mythology. A more concrete account (among many) of the flag’s origins suggests the flag was created under the reign of King Charles VIII, who also introduced the Swedish coat of arms. The oldest instance of the blue flag with a yellow cross was under King Gustav I, in the 16th century. From Wikipedia: A royal warrant of November 6, 1663, regulated the use of the triple-tailed flag, to be used only as a state flag and military ensign. According to the same royal warrant, merchant ships were only allowed to fly square-cut city flags in their respective provincial colors. In practice, however, the merchant fleet began using a square-cut civil ensign of the state flag.”


Conclusion

The Swedish is one of our favorite designs, simple and easy, but with a colorful and somewhat mysterious past. If you’re looking to make your own flag, you know where to go. Click below to begin designing your flag now.

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