What does Waless flag mean

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Wales flag

The flag of Wales shows a red dragon on a green and white background. The Welsh flag is very, very old.

The flag of Wales shows a red dragon (English The Red Dragon) on a green and white field. Since the exact shape of the kite is not standardized, there are several variants of the Welsh flag.

There are many legends surrounding the Welsh dragon. There is the legend of a red and a white dragon who fight against each other in a cave under a mountain in Wales and repeatedly let the tower collapse against the Anglo-Saxons that King Vortigern tried to build there. Chroniclers in the Middle Ages reported about these two fighting dragons. King Voriger wants to offer a fatherless child as a human sacrifice to prevent the tower from collapsing. But this very child explains to the king the real reason for the collapse and it also explains the fight. It interprets this as the battle between the British and Anglo-Saxons. The red dragon, according to the boy, who was weaker at the beginning but wins in the end, stands for the Celts.

The Historia Brittonum from the 9th century interprets the child as Ambrosius. But there is also the Historia Regum Britannia by Geoffrey of Monmouth from the 12th century, which wants to recognize the boy as the Merlin (or Myrddin).

Legends from Wales - Merlin, Ambrosius and Arthur

When a Merlin and an Ambrosius are mentioned, an Arthur must not be far and so it is popularly assumed that the red dragon was the standard of combat of the legendary Arthur. But other Celtic / Roman-British leaders are said to have led the dragon.

The fact that this legend refers to a place in Wales and the contrast between “Anglo-Saxons” and Celts in Wales, which was conquered quite late, is still reflected on a linguistic level today, may explain why the dragon symbol was chosen for the flag. The Wales motto, Y Ddraig Goch ddyry cychwyn (/ ə ˈðraig ˈgoːx ˈðɘri ˈkɘxwɪn /; German The red dragon goes first), contains a similar, if less warlike, symbolism.

History of the flag of Wales

The red dragon then became the national flag of Wales in 1807. In its current form, the flag was officially adopted in 1959. However, the dragon has been the symbol of Wales for centuries. And so it is not surprising that there are historians who consider the flag of Wales, alongside the flag of Scotland, to be the oldest national flag in the world that is still in use.

Where does the dragon symbol come from?

The origin of the dragon symbol is not entirely clear. There is a theory that the dragon came to Wales through the Romans. So it is said to have come to Britain with a Roman cavalry unit that had a dragon as a standard. This unit was stationed in Ribchester from the 2nd to the 4th century.

However, the symbol of the dragon could be much older than the Roman times on the island. After all, the origin of the green and white stripes has been clarified, these go back to the Tudor family, who came from Wales. This ruled over England from 1485 to 1603. Queen Elizabeth I was the last ruler of the House of Tudor.

Dragon popular symbol

The dragon was also popular as a symbol on the rest of the island and so Richard the Lionheart took a dragon as standard on the Third Crusade (1191) and King Henry II fought under the dragon in the Battle of Lewes. In 1400 Owain Glyndwer revolted against the English crown in Wales, he too led a dragon. When Heinrich Tudor became King of England in 1495, the red dragon made its way into England.

The oldest traditional use of the red dragon as a symbol of Wales goes back to the year 820.

The national flag of Bhutan also shows a kite.

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