Tricolor ( Latin tres, tria 'three', Latin color 'color') is a Germanized French term from flag science and describes a three-colored flag with three vertical or horizontal stripes of equal width. In German-speaking countries, this usually means the flag of France ( le Tricolore or le drapeau tricolore ).
The following outstanding examples with historical significance are sorted by age:
- Netherlands: The oldest tricolor is the flag of the Netherlands , which dates back to the 16th century and established a tradition of freedom. It is based on the republican tricolor that was introduced in 1579 in the struggle for freedom against Spain under the leadership of Prince William of Orange-Nassau in the colors orange-white-blue. The flag was named after him Prinsenvlag (German "Prinzenflagge"). In 1630 the orange ( Dutch Oranje = "Oranien") was exchanged for red, but it is still called Prinsenvlag today .
- Luxembourg: The flag of the Grand Duchy of Luxembourg is practically identical to the Dutch flag, with the exception of a lighter shade of blue. Luxembourg separated from the United Kingdom of the Netherlands in 1830 , but - unlike Belgium - did not change the flag at that time.
- France: The most famous of all tricolors is the French one, which was created with the colors blue-white-red (often also referred to as Le Bleu-Blanc-Rouge ) during the French Revolution , supposedly the colors of the city of Paris - blue and red the royal white were put together. The tricolor originally symbolized the coming together of king and people in the phase of constitutional monarchy . Another tradition assumes that in addition to the colors of the kings - blue and white - the blood red of the revolution was added, which could also be combined with the red hat of the Jacobins and the sans-culottes . Another interpretation of the colors is based on the maxims of the revolution: Liberté (blue), Egalité (white), Fraternité (red).
- Italy: The Italian tricolor was inspired by the French flag brought to Italy by Napoléon. Its first version dates from 1797 and was already the flag of the Transpadani Republic .
Germany: The German national flag black-red-gold is also a tricolor. The colors of the uniform of the Lützow Freikorps served as a model , in the post-Napoleonic period it became the hallmark of the revolutionary anti-monarchist bourgeoisie, which it - Germanized - referred to as "tricolor". The flag - which was strictly forbidden at the time - was shown and carried for the first time in public at the Hambach Festival in 1832, it was also a symbol against small states and thus for the longed-for German unity:
“... Up, up, free citizens , to the castle, to the castle, the German colors are blowing ... “
The flag of the North German Confederation and the German Empire was created by merging the colors of Prussia (black and white) and that of the Hanseatic cities (white and red).
- Further examples:
- Arnold Rabbow: Dtv lexicon of political symbols . Deutscher Taschenbuchverlag, Munich 1970.
- Karl Ernst Georges, Comprehensive Latin-German concise dictionary . Volume 2, column 3215: "tricolor, oris (tres and color), dreifarbig".