Lebanon is a small state (4 million people) in the Middle East, located in a mountainous area on the Mediterranean coast. The official name is the Lebanese Republic. Despite its small size, this country has a very long and fascinating history stretching back centuries. The Lebanese flag is no less interesting: it depicts a stylized tree - a cedar.
Cedar on the flag of Lebanon
The Lebanese flag is a symbol of the country and the spokesman for the main state idea. The final version was adopted immediately after the country's independence in 1943. In 1967 the flag was slightly changed. The cedar now looks less recognizable and more stylized.
The flag consists of three horizontal stripes - two red and one wide white in the middle. On a white background, there is a cedar tree, which has long been the symbol of Lebanon.
Red symbolizes the blood watered in the struggle for independence, white - denotes purity of thoughts and snow on the mountains of Lebanon.
The cedar is the symbol of Lebanon. He is rooted in the Christian religion and personifies Christ. In Judaism, the cedar was considered the "Tree of the Lord." Outstanding, intelligent and strong people were called cedars. It was the cedars brought from Lebanon that went into the construction of the first Christian temple - the Temple of Solomon.
It is also believed that the symbolism depicted on the flag is related to the Christian Maronite sect, which has a particular influence in Lebanon.
History of Lebanon
To fully understand the symbolism of the Lebanese flag, it is worth diving into the history of this small, but so much survived state during its long existence.
The peculiarities of the way of life in Lebanon are extremely interesting. The whole life of the people of this country is thoroughly saturated with religious rules, foundations and conditions of belonging to one or another religious community, tk. the political system of the country is confessionalism. Today in Lebanon there are Maronites, Sunnis, Shiites, Druze, Protestants, Catholics and others. Representatives of different faiths.
Confessionalism developed naturally, due to the peculiarities of the course of historical upheavals in the country, when it passed from under the influence of one strong power under the influence and domination of another. This territory was originally inhabited by the ancient Phoenicians, then the land began to belong to Assyria, and then it was conquered by Alexander the Great, and later by Rome itself.
In apostolic times, Christians began to settle here, and the Christian religion was entrenched as one of the main denominations in Lebanon (Maronites). Then in the 8th century. AD the country was conquered by the Caliphate of Omar, bringing here Arabic culture and language. Subsequently, this gave rise to the religion of the Druze, Shiites, Sunnis, as offshoots of Islam. In the 16th century, the heavy heel of the Ottoman Empire stepped into Lebanon. Over time, the government developed contradictions with the strengthened and strengthened Christian community, which was supported by most of the society.
The era of war and struggle has come. Lebanon was under the protectorate of France, gained independence in 1943. It survived the Lebanese-Israeli war, which ended in 1948 and the civil war of 1975-90. The country is now going through a period of recovery.