What is the signification and history of the Thai flag ?

The Thai flag is made of 5 horizontal strips of 3 different colours : red, white and blue. This gave birth to its name, “Thong Trairong”, which means tricolor in Thai.

The red colour represents the blood that has been shed to maintain the country’s independence.

The white is symbol of pureness and the Buddhism colour, first religion of the country.

The blue represents the country’s colour as well as the monarchy. It is also a way of thanking their allied countries, which helped the country during First World War (USA, France, UK and Russia).
You can notice that these countries still have blue, white and red on their flags also.

The Thai flag is one of the world’s oldest flag as it is used since the 28th September 1917.

However, it encountered a lot of changes.

We suppose the first Siam Kingdom’s flag was entirely red. Indeed, according to historical researches it would have been used under the King Noirai le Grand’ reign, from 1656 to 1688.

It evolved with the addition of a chakra in its centre. A chakra is a white circle that represents the Buddhist belief of rebirth.

Then, under the reign of Rama II (1809 to 1824), an elephant has been added in the centre of the chakra. This was the symbol of the dynastic family but also a symbol of strength.

The chakra has been taken off and few changes occurred on the elephant.

Finally, in 1917, the last change was made. During a flood, the King Rama IV saw the flag upside down and was upset about the fact he could not identify it clearly. He decided to change it completely with a symmetric design, which led to the actual one.

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