The flag of Brazil has a solid green background. A yellow, horizontal rhombus lies at its center and in the middle of that, is a blue circle. The blue circle at the center of the flag has an image of a constellation and a white banner with green lettering that reads, “Order and Progress.” The national flag of Brazil was officially adopted on November 19, 1889. Its official name translates to "the yellow and green flag".

Each color and symbol on the flag of Brazil has a specific meaning. The green background of this flag is said to represent the House of Braganza of Pedro I, who served as the first Emperor of Brazil. The yellow diamond is said to represent the House of Habsburg of Maria Leopoldina, the first Empress of Brazil and wife of Pedro I. The blue circle in the middle of the flag represents the sky over Brazil and each of the stars on the field symbolizes one of the federative units. Additionally, some of these stars form the Southern Cross constellation, which was visible from Rio de Janeiro on the night of November 15, 1889, when the country declared its independence.

During the transition from Empire to Republic, the provisional President of Brazil rejected a previously used flag design. According to him, the design was too similar to that used by another country. This veto opened the way new flag design proposals. The current flag of Brazil was designed by Raimundo Teixeira Mendes, Manuel Pereira Reis, Décio Villares, and Miguel Lemos. Of these individuals, Raimundo Teixeira was responsible for the motto “Order and Progress” that appears on the flag in its banner that is placed over the blue circle. This motto came from a quote by Auguste Comte, founder of the Religion of Humanity that Raimundo Teixeira followed. This quote mentioned, “order as the basis, progress as the goal.”

Flags used under the Empire of Brazil were similar in appearance, with the exception of the blue circle with constellations. Instead, these earlier flags placed the imperial coat of arms in the center of the yellow diamond. Between November 19, 1889 and 1992, the current flag design has been changed 3 times. In 1960, an additional star was added to the blue circle, bringing the total star-count up to 22. The same addition was made in 1968. In 1992, the last change was made, bringing the star-count up to 27.

This page was last modified on May 1st, 2018

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