30 Nov 2010Blog

The Broken Trident

by Monique

Happy Independence Day!

The Broken Trident is a symbolic reminder of the day (30 November 1966) that Barbados gained independence from British rule. And whilst you can find this design on everything from t-shirts to beach towels, we are very proud of its heritage.

Here’s a little more of our national flag’s history from Wikipedia…

The national flag of Barbados was officially adopted on 30 November 1966, the island’s first Independence Day. It consists of a triband of two bands of ultramarine separated by a golden middle band. A black trident-head, (commonly called the “broken trident”), is centred within the golden band. The flag was designed by local art teacher Grantley Prescod, and was chosen from around 1000 designs after an island-wide contest.

The two blue bands are said to stand for the ocean, while the gold is for the sand on the island. The trident is taken from the old colonial badge, which showed Britannia holding a trident, the broken lower part symbolizes a symbolic break with its historical and constitutional ties as a former colony.[1] The three points of the trident represent the three principles of democracy – government of, for, and by the people.

The flag is a rare example of a canting national flag, that is, it makes a heraldic pun. In heraldry a trident is called a barbe, and as such is a punning symbol for Barbados.

via Flag of Barbados