France National Flag History

Nov 2nd, 2018


France’s official name is the French Republic. It is located in western Europe but includes territories in South American and some islands in the Atlantic, Indian and Pacific oceans. France consists of 247,368 square miles. Paris serves as the capital of the country.


France adopted an official flag in 1830, though the tricolor flag was in use beginning in the 1790s. The design was first adopted as an ensign in 1794 and as Napoleon’s army flag in 1812. The flag design is based on the cockade’s that were worn by the militia in the late 1700s.


There are no actual meanings assigned to the flag design.  The militia chose the colors blue and red, the traditional colors of Paris, and later added the color white.  Even so, over time, different people and entities have chosen to associate the design with their own definitions. For example, blue and red are said to represent the Virgin Mary. She is the patroness of France.


Other definitions for the design meanings include the following:


*     Blue: Bourgeoisie – the middle and upper middle classes

*     White: Clergy

*     Red: Nobility




*     Blue: Freedom

*     White: Equality

*     Red: Brotherhood



From 1815 to 1830, during the Bourbon restoration, a royal white flag was adopted and displayed. In 1830, after the French Revolution and dethroning of King Charles X, the tricolor flag was readopted and has been in use since that time.


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