History of the Thai Flag

The current flag of Thailand was adopted in 1917. It has five stripes arranged horizontally in blue, white and red colors. The five stripes are arranged with red on top, then a white stripe, next a blue stripe which is twice as broad as the red and white stripes, followed by another white stripe and finally one more red stripe. The red and white and blue colors each signify the nation, religion and king respectively, and are considered the country’s unofficial motto. This flag is referred to as thong trairong, or tricolor flag.

The current Thailand flag was adopted by the country as recently as on 28th October, 1917.  This flag is very different from the earlier Thailand flag that was used during the time when the country was referred to as Siam. The first known Thai flag was created around the year 1855 by King Monkrut or Rama IV in which a white elephant was depicted and which was a royal symbol that was set to a red ground and which helped to make the Thailand flag more distinct in order to improve its international image. The red flag with a white elephant in the middle is called thong chang, or “elephant flag.”

An interesting feature of the Thailand flag is that it closely resembles the national flag of another country (Costa Rica) that had earlier adopted those very colors about eleven years prior to the creation of the Thailand flag though these flags differed from one another in that the blue and red colors in the flags were inverted.

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