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303-322-7345
800-830-8660

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Isareli Flag - Israel - Promised Land - The Magen David (shield of David, or as it is more commonly known, the Star of David) is the symbol most commonly associated with Judaism today, but it is actually a relatively new Jewish symbol. It is supposed to represent the shape of King David's shield (or perhaps the emblem on it), but there is really no support for that claim in any early rabbinic literature. In fact, the symbol is so rare in early Jewish literature and artwork that art dealers suspect forgery if they find the symbol in early works.The Israeli Flag: The flag of Israel was adopted on October 28, 1948, five months after the country's establishment. It depicts a blue Star of David on a white background, between two horizontal blue stripes. The blue color is mandated only as "dark sky-blue",[1] and varies from flag to flag, ranging from a hue of pure blue, sometimes shaded almost as dark as navy blue, to hues about 75% toward pure cyan and shades as light as very light blue.[2] The flag was designed for the Zionist Movement in 1891. The basic design recalls the Tallit, the Jewish prayer shawl, which is white with blue stripes. The hexagram in the centre is the Magen David ("shield of David"). It became a Jewish symbol starting in late medieval Prague, and was adopted by the First Zionist Congress in 1897.

Origin of the flag

The flag of the State of Israel is intended to portray a star of david on a tallit, the traditional Jewish prayer shawl.

The Israelites used an indigo colored dye called tekhelet; this dye is now believed to have been made from the snail Murex trunculus. This dye was very important in both Jewish and non-Jewish cultures of this time, and was used by royalty and the upper class in dyeing their clothing, sheets, curtains, etc. (The dye from a related snail can be processed to form Tyrian purple called argaman.)

In the Bible, the Israelites are commanded to have one of the threads of their tallit (prayer shawl) with tekhelet; when they look at this dye they will think of the blue sky, and of the God above them in Heaven. Tekhelet corresponds to the color of the divine revelation (Midrash Numbers Rabbah xv.). Sometime near the end of the Talmudic era (500-600 CE) the industry that produced this dye collapsed. It became more rare; over time, the Jewish community lost the tradition of which species of shellfish produced this dye. Since Jews were then unable to fulfil this commandment, they have since left their tzitzit (tallit strings) white. However, in remembrance of the commandment to use the tekhelet dye, it became common for Jews to have blue or purple stripes on their tallit. [3] The idea that the blue and white colors were the national color of the Jewish people was voiced early on by Ludwig August Frankl (1810-1894), an Austrian Jewish poet.

In his poem, "Judah's Colors", he writes:

“When sublime feelings his heart fill, he is mantled in the colors of his country. He stands in prayer, wrapped in a sparkling robe of white.

The hems of the white robe are crowned with broad stripes of blue; Like the robe of the High Priest, adorned with bands of blue threads.

These are the colors of the beloved country, blue and white are the borders of Judah; White is the radiance of the priesthood, and blue, the splendors of the firmament.[4]”

In 1885 the agricultural village of Rishon LeZion used a blue and white flag to mark its third anniversary. A blue and white flag, with a Star of David and the Hebrew word "Maccabee", was used in 1891 by the Bnai Zion Educational Society.

David Wolffsohn (1856-1914), a businessman prominent in the early Zionist movement, was aware that the nascent Zionist movement had no official flag, and that the design proposed by Theodore Herzl was gaining no significant support. He writes:

“ At the behest of our leader Herzl, I came to Basle to make preparations for the Zionist Congress. Among many other problems that occupied me then was one that contained something of the essence of the Jewish problem. What flag would we hang in the Congress Hall? Then an idea struck me. We have a flag — and it is blue and white. The talith (prayer shawl) with which we wrap ourselves when we pray: that is our symbol. Let us take this Talith from its bag and unroll it before the eyes of Israel and the eyes of all nations. So I ordered a blue and white flag with the Shield of David painted upon it. That is how the national flag, that flew over Congress Hall, came into being. ”

While this flag emphasizes Jewish religious symbols, Theodor Herzl wanted the flag to have more universal symbols: 7 golden stars symbolizing the 7-hour working quota of the enlightened state-to-be, which would have advanced socialist legislations. [5]

In 1897, an international meeting of worldwide Zionists was held in Basel, Switzerland, to consider establishing a homeland for Jews in Palestine. Morris Harris, a member of New York Havevy Zion, used his awning shop to design a suitable banner and decorations for the reception, and his mother Lena Harris sewed the flag. The flag was made with two blue stripes and a large blue Star of David in the center, the colors blue and white chosen from the design of the tallis, the traditional Jewish prayer shawl. The flag was ten feet by six feet—in the same proportions as the flag of the United States—and became known as the Flag of Zion. It was accepted as the official Zionist flag at the second international conference on Zionism held in Switzerland in 1898, and the state of Israel later adopted the design as the official flag, upon its independence from the United Kingdom in 1948.

According to a 1911 edition of the Jewish Encyclopedia, a flag with blue and white stripes and a Magen David in the center flew with those of other nationalities from one of the buildings at the Louisiana Purchase Exposition of 1904. [6] It implied that it flew there in relation to large meetings of Zionists. That expo was the World's Fair hosting the 1904 Summer Olympics.