What does the Canadian flag mean

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National flag of Canada

The national flag of Canada is designed in the colors red and white. The red maple leaf on the white field is striking.

The national flag of Canada is also called the Maple Leaf Flag. In French the flag is called l'Unifolié (the one-leaved one). Appropriate names, because a red maple leaf is emblazoned in the middle of the Canadian flag. The flag of Canada was officially hoisted for the first time on February 15, 1965. A commission had been set up and this selected the design that came from George Stanley, a Canadian historian. There were over 3,500 entries, and a maple leaf flag was chosen from over 2100.
Before Canada waved the maple leaf flag as its national flag, different variants of the British Red Ensign with the Canadian coat of arms were raised over the country.

Appearance and meaning of the Canadian flag

The Canadian national flag has the following description: A red maple leaf on a silver Canadian pale, with red on top. And so the flag of Canada consists of three stripes. A red field to the right and left and a white field in the middle. The red stripes are exactly half as wide as the white field. It is not a red-white-red tricolor like the flag of Austria or Peru. Because the white field in the middle, the Canadian stake, is bordered by the red. The aspect ratio of the Canadian flag is 1: 2. The color distribution follows the scheme 1: 2: 1.
A maple leaf can be seen on the white field, namely an 11-pointed red sugar maple leaf. In nature, however, a maple leaf has 23 points. Despite the difference, the number eleven probably has no deeper symbolic meaning, nor does it correspond to the number of provinces or the like. Earlier versions of the maple leaf had 13 or even 15 tips. The eleven tips of the maple leaf on the current flag were probably the result of an experiment in the wind tunnel, how many tips make a flag look like in the wind and what is the optimal number of maple leaf tips so that the whole thing looks as good as possible even in strong winds.
The maple leaf has been a symbol of Canadian nature and the environment since the beginning of the 18th century. Maple leaves are also found in the Canadian national coat of arms.

Meaning of the colors in the Canada flag

The red border of the white field symbolizes the Pacific and the Atlantic. The white symbolizes the Arctic snow. According to modern interpretations, the red should also remind of the fallen soldiers of Canada during the First World War, but the color red was already found in earlier Canadian flags.
The two white areas are also interpreted as facial profiles facing each other. These two even have their own names in Canada: Jack and Jacques.
In addition, the flag is also called red and white most commonly referred to as Maple leave.

Suggestions for a new Canadian flag

The red and white flag with the maple leaf prevailed in 1965. However, the French Canadians were not satisfied with the design of the flag, they demanded the inclusion of the Bourbon lilies in the new flag. The bourbon lilies could not prevail, however, despite some disputes in Canada. Since 2006 there has been a proposal to change the flag. The aim is to find a flag that also represents the Francophone population of Canada. The flag would look almost the same as it does today, but with two blue stripes between the red border and the white field. The flag of Quebec is blue (with a white cross and white lilies on it). Quebec is the largest province in Canada and the one with the largest francophone population.

Promotion of the maple leaf flag

The government of Canada has also been promoting the flag since its inception in 1965. There is a Canadian Parliamentary Flag Program for this purpose. Flags were also made available free of charge to popularize this new national symbol.
A special campaign is that Canadian flags that waved on the Peace Tower, a bell tower that is part of the Canadian Parliament building in Ottawa, or on the west or east wing of this building, are given away. The program is so popular that there is now a 38 year waiting period for flags flying on the Peace Tower and a 25 year waiting period for flags flying on the other two blocks.

Canadian Flag Day

Canadian Flag Day has been February 15th since 1996. The day is celebrated as National. Flag of Canada Day.

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