Flag of Haiti

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The Haitian Flag (Kreyòl: Drapo Ayisyen, French: Drapeau d'Haïti) in it's current form was adopted by Haiti on February 17, 1986.

Flag of the Republic of Haiti

Flag of Haiti
Haitian Coat of Arms
Catherine Flonon a ten gourdes note, sewing the flag.
Flag of Haiti on U.S. advertising; late 19th century.
A. Nemours and wife with the Haitian Flag during a visit to Fort de Joux.

The first red and blue flag was sewn by Catherine Flon on May 18, 1803, during the Congress of Arcahaie, under instructions of Jean-Jacques Dessalines. Dessalines is said to have asked to remove the white of the French flag, which led to the red and blue design. The coat of arms in the center carries the words: "L'Union fait la force" (transl. Unity Makes Strong). Initially the flag had the inscription: Liberté ou la Mort (Liberty or Death).

Design of the Flag

The Haitian Constitution of March 29, 1987 states in Article 3 1:

The emblem of the Haitian Nation shall be a flag with the following description:
a. Two (2) equal sized horizontal bands: a blue one on top and a red one underneath;
b. The coat of arms of the Republic are: a Palette surmounted by the liberty cap, and under the palms a trophy with the legend:
In Union there is Strength [L'UNION FAIT LA FORCE or for the Kreyòl version: MEN ANPIL, CHAY PA LOU - this means: Many Hands Lighten the Load, the French motto would be translated as Linyon Fè la Fòs in Kréyol.]

Note 1: Original text in the 1987 Haitian Constitution (Kreyòl version):

Premye Pati Konstitisyon an - Chapit 1

Nimewo 2:
Koulè drapo peyi d Ayiti, se ble e wouj.
Nimewo 3:
Men ki jan drapo peyi d Ayiti dwe fèt:
Drapo a fèt ak 2 moso twal, menm longè, menm lajè. Moso twal ble a, anwo. Moso twal wouj la, anba. Tou le 2 moso twal yo kouche.
Nan mitan drapo a, sou yon ti moso twal blan, yon moso twal kare, y a fè desen yon pye palmis, ak yon bonèt wouj sou tèt pye palmis la.
Anba fèy palmis la, y a fè desen kèk zam ak kèk enstriman mizik.
Men sa y a ekri, anba, sou ti moso twal blan an: MEN ANPIL, CHAY PA LOU.

May 18 - Haitian Flag Day

In honor of the May 18 1803 creation of the first red and blue bicolore, during the Congress of Arcahaie, this day is a holiday in Haiti.

Relation to the Flag of the Dominican Republlic

Current D.R. Flag
Early Flag of the Dominican Republic
The flag of the Dominican Republic has its roots in the Haitian Flag of the early 19th century, a horizontal bicolor of blue over red. (Martucci) The first flag of the Dominican Republic was created when Juan Pablo Duarte modified the Haitian flag by superimposing a white cross over it

See Also


External Links


  • Flagpedia.net: Haitian Flag - Webpage with with link to download large size Haitian Flag image.