Latvia’s National Flag
The national flag of Latvia was used by the independent nation from 1918 until 1940 when the country was under Soviet Union occupation. On February 27th, 1990 the previous banner consisting of a red-white-red color scheme was chosen to remain Latvia’s national flag. Although officially adopted in 1922, the Latvian flag was flown as early as the 13th century. One source points out that the overwhelming use of red symbolizes the Latvian people’s readiness to shed blood for freedom and liberty. Another interpretation of the flags origins comes from 1279 when a Latvian leader was mortally wounded in battle. He was wrapped in a white sheet which then became bloodstained. The white strip running through the center is said to represent that white sheet, and the red around it, the brave warrior’s blood.