Filipinos are some of the most patriotic people in the world. Wherever they are, they’ll be proud to tell anyone they meet about the country they came from and its vibrant culture. They’re also ready to defend their country if it’s being discredited or insulted.
Additionally, Filipinos are known to be very supportive of anyone who represents the Philippines, regardless if it’s in the field of sports, academics, arts, and more. They make sure that these people know that they are supported by their countrymen in their pursuit of proving the skills and talents of Filipinos.
One of the most important symbols of Filipino patriotism is the Philippine flag. Every Filipino you know can draw the flag from memory and tell you a few facts about it. After all, they have seen it almost every day of their lives while in school during flag ceremonies and other major events. But if you want to learn more Philippine flag trivia, continue reading below.
Who Designed the Philippine Flag?
Emilio Aguinaldo is the one who is credited for creating the designs for the Philippine national flag. He originally designed it in 1897 while exiled in Hong Kong.
Nowadays, his original design is still being used by the country, albeit with a few changes. One of the most notable differences between Aguinaldo’s design to the one being used today is the sun.
Originally, the sun had a face on it, similar to the anthropomorphic sun emoji available on most smartphone keyboards nowadays. Aguinaldo designed the sun as such because of his inspiration from the flags of other South American republics that had gained independence from Spain, namely Argentina and Uruguay. The sun was then changed to its current appearance in 1919.
Who Sewed the First Flag of the Philippines?
The Philippines’ first flag was sewn by three women at 535 Morrison Hill Road in Hong Kong. One of them was Doña Marcela Mariño Agoncillo, who was the wife of the first Filipino diplomat Felipe Agoncillo. She has also been named the Mother of the Philippine Flag for her contribution to the creation of the country’s symbol. Doña Agoncillo was joined by Lorenza Agoncillo, her eldest daughter, and Delfina Herbosa de Natividad, the niece of Dr. Jose Rizal, in sewing the first Philippine flag.
The three women worked on sewing the flag day in and day out before finishing it after five days. It was made with silk and delivered straight to Aguinaldo on May 17, 1897 before he left Hong Kong to return to the Philippines.
Today, the country’s first flag is preserved at the Aguinaldo Museum in Baguio City. However, others claim that this flag is just a replica and that the original flag was lost somewhere in Pangasinan during the Filipino-American war.
The Different Parts of the Philippine Flag and Its Meaning
The Philippine flag is an iconic symbol known for its three main colors, red, white, and blue. It is also referred to informally as three stars and a sun.
Although the Philippine flag might seem simple, all its parts represent something. The white equilateral triangle that serves as the background for the three stars and the sun represents Filipinos’ liberty, equality, and fraternity. Additionally, the blue part of the flag symbolizes peace, truth, and justice while the red part represents Filipinos’ patriotism and valor.
The eight rays of the sun featured in the Philippine flag stand for the first eight provinces that stood up against the Spaniards. These provinces are Manila, Cavite, Bulacan, Pampanga, Tarlac, Batangas, Laguna, and Nueva Ecija.
Moreover, contrary to popular belief, the iconic three stars in the Philippine flag do not symbolize Luzon, Visayas, and Mindanao. Instead, they represent Luzon, Panay, and Mindanao, which were the three major island groups in which the revolution started.
When Was the Philippine Flag First Waved?
According to official records, the Philippine flag was first waved by Aguinaldo in his home in Kawit, Cavite on June 12, 1898. This day is now known and celebrated as the country’s Independence Day.
However, some historians say that the correct trivia about the Philippine flag is that it was first unfurled in the Battle at Alapan, Imus, Cavite after the Philippine Revolutionary Army won against Spain on May 28, 1898. This argument led to the issuance of Presidential Proclamation No. 374 on March 6, 1965. This proclamation declared May 28 as National Flag Day, honoring the first unfurling of the Philippine flag and as a show of respect towards the national coat of arms.
Variations in the Design of the Philippine Flag
When the flag was introduced and used, its design wasn’t been deemed official. So, different provinces across the Philippines applied some modifications to it. Most of the time, it was displayed with Spanish texts, such as Expedicionarias del Norte de Luzon (Northern Luzon Expeditionary Forces) and Libertad Justicia e Ygualdad (Liberty, Justice, and Equality).
But the changes didn’t stop there. For so long, there has been a debate about the correct shade of blue to be used for the Philippine flag. Aguinaldo’s flag featured the same blue color as the flag of the United States of America. This similarity is attributed to the Philippines’ gratitude to the US for supporting the former.
However, some historians believe that the shade of blue should be the same as the Cuban flag since the country inspired the Philippine revolution. On the other hand, Ambeth Ocampo, a renowned Philippine historian says that the flag’s color should be pale blue, which is the same color as the available silk cloth when the flag was first sewn.
With this debate came the different renditions of the Philippine flag. Its blue portion was changed from navy blue to light blue by former President Ferdinand Marcos Sr. in 1985. But this change didn’t catch on and was rejected after the 1986 EDSA Revolution.
To settle the discussion, the Flag and Heraldic Code of the Philippines was established. This code declared that the color of the Philippine flag should be royal blue instead of navy blue.
Learning more facts about the Philippine flag can not only help you win trivia contests, but also gain a deeper appreciation for the country’s symbol. With the Philippine flag trivia listed in this article, you’re one step closer to learning more about the Philippines and its rich culture and history.