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Morocco Historical Flags

(from 1062 to 1912)

Last modified: 2003-01-25 by antonio martins
Keywords: scimitar | scissors | zulfikar | checkerboard | swallowtail | error |
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White flags (9th to 17th cent.)

The use of the flag in Morocco as a symbol of the state dates way back to the Almoravide dynasty (1062-1125 AD). Prior to this time, white silk banners were often carried in battle, sometimes with Koranic inscriptions written on them. The Almoravides institutionalized this practice. They gave one banner to every unit of 100 soldiers; the leaders always carried one inscribed: «There is no god but god, and Mohammad is His Prophet». The two following dynasties (the Merinides and the Saadiens) continued the use of the White flag as the symbol of the State.

Red flags (17th cent. to present)

The Alaouites (beginning in the 17th Century), which are the ruling dynasties and the ancestors of His Majesty King Hassan II, were the first to introduce the red flag. It was raised every morning and lowered every evening on the fortresses at Rabat and Sale. The green Sulayman star on the flag was introduced in 1912, when Morocco was put under the French protectorate, in order to distinguish the nation's flag from the others.

quoted by Dov Gutterman, 17 Apr 1999,

Also avaliable from:

Flag in ca. 1884

[19th c. Morocco flag]
by Jorge Candeias, 21 Aug 1999

Morocco had around 1884 a red flag, with a border of red and white triangles, in the center two white scimiatrs crossed.
Josh Fruhlinger, 11 May 1996

This flag can be found on several old flag charts. It is reported on Dutch flag charts as "Moorse vlag" (Moorish flag); later it became "Moroccan flag".
Jarig Bakker, 21 Aug 1999

The flag of Morocco was originally plain red, despite the numerous fanciful designs attributed to the country by european flag chart publishers.
Jorge Candeias, 23 Aug 1999, quoting from [cra90]

It might be note here that the Zulfikar flags were commonly misinterpreted by mideval European painters (and flag authorities) as flags showing (tailor's) scissors! [or crossed scimiatrs].
Zeljko Heimer, 20 Aug 1999

On this chart [bel56], the flag is labelled "Morocco" and consists of a red field with a border made of red and white triangles and with white open scissors centered. Thus, the Moroccoan flag should then be a red flag with the zul-faqar centered and a red/white border of triangles, all these elements white.
Jorge Candeias, 21 Aug 1999

The dhu-ul-fiqr or thul fuqar or zul-faqar or zulfikar (or any of a number of transliterations from the Arabic) has been used as a symbol of Morocco because the ruling Alaouite dynasty claims legitimacy by virtue of descent from the Prophet's son-in-law, Ali. Dhu-ul-fiqr was Ali's sword, the blade of which was split in half.
Joseph McMillan, 21 Aug 1999

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Flag in 1367

«Marokko 1367 - a squarish red flag with a swallowtail at the top only. In the center is a circle of blue/white checkerboard.»
John Niggley, 25 Jan 1996, quoting [neu39a]

That is not the flag of the Kingdom of Morocco, it is the flag of the city of Marrakech.
Jaume Ollé, 09 Oct 1998