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Turkish flag

Turkish flag

The flag of Turkey is the national flag and the national flag of the Republic of Turkey . It consists of a waning moon and five-pointed star, both in white on a red background. The flag is called Ay-Yildiz (literally, “star moon”), or a-sancak (the “Red Banner”) in Turkish .

The flag has a very complex origin. It is first virtually identical to the flag of the Ottoman Empire, with changes to the shape of the moon and the number of branches of the star from eight to five. The current flag was adopted in 1844, before its proportions are standard with the Law on Turkish Flag in 1936.

History of the modern Turkish flag

The star and crescent, now seen as symbols of Islam, have long been used in Asia Minor and some Turkic peoples before the arrival of Islam.

The Ottomans used different arrangements for different uses, such as using the green flag for the Islamic institutions and using red for secular institutions. In 1844 the eight-pointed star was replaced with a five-pointed flag and then reached its current form.

Origin of the Turkish flag

The origin of the crescent and star as symbols date time Babylon and the ancient Egypt. It has been suggested that the Turkish tribes during their migrations from Central Asia to Turkey around 800 AD, have adopted this symbol of local tribes and states in the area of the Middle East today, which adopted in turn these symbols.

The origin of the flag is subject to many legends in the country, and some contradict the history of the Ottoman flag. Among the most common descriptions are:

  • The crescent moon and star were holy symbols to the pre-Islamic Turkish tribes, while red is the colour cardinal to the south.
  • A crescent and a star appeared to Mehmed II the night of the fall of Constantinople in 1453 .
  • Another date of theory Byzantine Empire , highlighting the fact that the crescent and star were used as symbols of Byzantium for centuries. When the Ottomans took Constantinople , they adopted these symbols to the Ottoman Empire (the moon represents the Greek goddess Artemis , and stars the Virgin Mary ). The star and the crescent moon, however, were symbols of the Egyptian goddess Isis earlier.
  • The story told most of the Turkish flag in the year 1071, after the Battle of Manzikert , and the defeat of the Byzantine army, the Seljuk Emperor Alp Arslan was wandering on the battlefield when he saw the reflection of crescent and star on a pool of blood of Turkish warriors. He decided to make the flag with the Turks. There is another version of this story with the Ottoman victory at the Battle of Mohács in Hungary instead of Manzkiert.

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