History of the Mexicoan FlagMexico's Día de la Bandera (Flag Day) is celebrated every February 24. With the holiday quickly approaching, let's take a look at the Mexican flag's history, what the flag's design signifies and why Día de la Bandera is celebrated on this date.

The Mexican flag is divided into three vertical blocks of color. On the left is green, representing hope. The middle stripe is white, signifying unity. The red on the right side stands for the blood of Mexico's heroes.

History of the Mexican FlagIn the very center of the Mexican flag is the national shield, set on the white background. The shield depicts an eagle devouring a serpent while standing atop a nopal plant. Local legends say that when the Aztecs left the mythical island of Aztlan in search of a new city, the god Huitzilopochtli told them that they should build their new city where they saw an eagle devouring a serpent while standing on a nopal. Their pilgrimage lasted about 300 years before they saw this sign on a small island in Lake Texcoco, leading them to build their new civilization of Tenochtitlan, which today is Mexico City.

Today, Día de la Bandera is celebrated on February 24 to honor the day politician Agustin de Iturbide declared Mexican independence from Spain in 1821. That same year, Iturbide drew up the plan for the Mexican flag and had the first one made. The original design had the same colors as the current flag and the national shield in the center, but the original shield depicted the eagle wearing a crown, and with no serpent.

Several changes were made to the Mexican flag over the next 200 years until today's version (known as the "Fourth National Flag") was instated in 1968, when Mexico City hosted the Olympic games. This version of the Mexican flag was confirmed by law as the official flag on February 24, 1984.

This February 24, take a moment to remember Mexico's fascinating history and independence represented in its proud, beautiful flag.

About Dia de la Bandera Mexico 

 Laura Winfree

Originally from Virginia, Laura Winfree moved south of the border in 2005 to major in tourism at La Salle University Cancun. Today, she works as a copy writer for a local travel agency in addition to freelance blogging, writing and translating. Laura writes about her life as an expat in Mexico at http://gringationcancun.com and http://www.facebook.com/gringationcancun. Nightclubs and weekly beach trips are her favorite part of living in Cancun!