The national flag of Angola consists of two equally sized horizontal fields of red(top half) and black (lower half). These areas are centred by an emblem which includes a yellow half gear wheel, crossed by a machete with a five-pointed star above the tip of the blade. This flag has been in official use since the independence of the country on 11 November 1975. The flag is based on a previously used banner by the Popular Movement for the Liberation of Angola (MPLA) who were fighting for independence against Portugal.
The red half of the flag of Angola is representative of the bloodshed and struggle during the fight for an independent state. The black half of the flag is a symbol of the people of Africa, a conventional colour symbol in many other African flags. The symbols in the emblem of this flag are reminiscent of the Soviet Union crossed hammer and sickle. The gear in the flag of Angola is symbolic of the industrial workers of the nation, and the machete represents the peasantry of the country. The five-pointed yellow star located at the tip of the knife is a symbol that is synonymous with socialism throughout the world.
The inspiration for this flag is evident once the flag of the MPLA has been seen. The MLPA still uses the flag they fought for independence under as their national party banner, evoking nationalist sentiment among many. The design of the flag was most recently described in the Constitutional Law of the Republic of Angola (federal constitution) in August of 1992.
Angola was a former Portuguese colony and was officially known as Portuguese Angola from 1575-1975. The banner of the Empire of Portugal was flown prominently during this period. As mentioned earlier, the MLPA created a banner, very similar to the current flag, during the Angolan War of Independence (1961-1974) which became a famous symbol during the late 1960s and early 1970s.
This page was last modified on May 1st, 2018