the Philippines


Manila, Luzon




More Information


The flag and the national anthem

Every flag has its symbols, what about this flag?

The flag was designed in 1898 after the Americans and Spaniards ended their war and the United States promised  an independence. It was only in 1946 that the  independence was completed.

The symbols of the flag


  an eight rayed sun

  three golden stars

  a red stripe

  a blue stripe

  a white triangle


The sun represents the beginning of a new era of self determination. 

The 8 rays on the sun stand for the 8 provinces  that rose in revolt against Spanish rule in the late 19th century.

The 3 stars stands for the 3 principal geographic areas of the country; Luzon, the Visayas and Mindanao. 

The colours in the  flag


  The colour white represents peace and purity

  The red stripe represents courage and bravery

  The blue stripe is for noble ideals



One country, two flags! 


Probably unique in the world is that a country has a flag for peacetime and a flag for wartime. The  flag showed above is, let us hope,  the one we'll see always. Blue on the top stands for peacetime. In wartime the flag will have the red stripe on the top.


The national anthem, "Lupang Hinirang"
Composed by Julian Felipe on June 12, 1898

Language: Tagalog


Bayang magiliw, perlas ng silanganan.
Alab ng puso, sa dibdib mo'y buhay.
Lupang hinirang, duyan ka ng magiting
Sa manlulupig, di ka pasisiil.

Sa dagat at bundok, sa simoy at
sa langit mong bughaw,
may dilag ang tula at awit
sa paglayang minamahal.

Ang kislap ng watawat mo'y
tagumpay na nagniningning.
Ang bituin at araw niya
kailan pa may di magdidilim.

Lupa ng araw, ng lualhati't pagsinta,
buhay ay langit sa piling mo.
Aming ligaya na pag may mang-aapi,
ang mamatay ng dahil sa iyo

English Version

Land of the morning
Child of the sun returning
With fervor burning
Thee do our souls adore.

Land dear and holy,
Cradle of noble heroes,
Ne'er shall invaders
Trample thy sacred shores.

Ever within thy skies and through thy clouds
And o'er thy hills and seas;
Do we behold thy radiance, feel the throb
Of glorious liberty.

Thy banner dear to all hearts
Its sun and stars alright,
Oh, never shall its shining fields
Be dimmed by tyrants might.


The national anthem

vocal midi (instrumental)

Hit the (midi) arrowbutton to hear the instrumental version


"Lupang Hinirang", why composed in 1898?

The period before liberty;

In 1521 the Spanish period started with the arrival of a small fleet in the coastal waters of Cebu island. After a period of struggle,  the organized resistance of the locals was definitely broken in 1565. 

A long period of Spanish influence followed. Colonial buildings and religious places gave the Philippines, at that time called  'Las Islas Felipinas', more and more a Spanish and Catholic character.  

Liberty,  brought by the Americans?

After 327 years under Spanish rule, the Spanish-American War ended the Spanish colonial period. The Filipinos thought that they won independence in 1898.  But that was a wishful thinking! The Philippines was controlled by the Americans from 1900-1942. Then a short Japanese occupation period 1942-1945 followed, before  the Americans defeated the Japanese army. Freedom at last! In 1946 the people of the Philippines attained their independence, 148 years later than the freedom which was written down by Julian Felipe in the "Lupang Hinirang". 


The upper part of the 'coat of arms' : 


  The sun symbolizes the independence,

  The lower part symbolizes the Spanish occupation  

       (the lion) and the American occupation (the eagle)

Coat of arms