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Bolivian flags of 1826-1851

Last modified: 2015-07-27 by alex garofolo
Keywords: llama | condor | wheat | bolivia | republica boliviana | wreath |
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Flag of 1826

Flag of Bolivia in 1826
image by António Martins, 08 Jun 1998

This flag was first adopted on 1826.07.25 (in use until 1851). In 1838 General Santa Cruz created the Peruvian-Bolivian Confederation. Bolivia was one of three states in the confederation. In 1839, General Santa Cruz was overthrown and the confederation was disbanded.
Jaume Ollé, 26 Jul 1996

The constituent congress of 1826 modified the First Flag by Law promulgated on July 25th of 1826:

The national flag will be the same that was designed by the General Assembly in the Law of august 17th replacing the five golden stars by one upper yellow stripe and the Republic arms in the middle, inside two branches of laurel and olive.

Then it means that in the flag of 1825 was replaced the upper green stripe by one yellow, and the five stars of the middle stripe was replaced by the republic arms.

Héctor Beltrán, 08 Aug 2004

The shade of the red is unknow to me. I can only speculate about the same punzó, as the most frequent red.
Jaume Ollé, 23 May 1998

In 1851 the flag of today was introduced, the coat of arms being modified (once again) in 1888.07.14, thus being the introduction date of all sources.
Ralf Stelter, 13 Jun 1999

Variant with the coat of arms

Flag of Bolivia in 1826 (unequal stripes variation)
image by Jorge Candeias and António Martins, 26 Sep 1998

Another question is the wreath: the 1825 flag has laurel and olive wreath and seems possible that the same remain in the 1826 flag. Perhaps (following a peruvian pattern) the arms were depicted in the center but sourronded by the wreath instead the oval. Jordi Hurtado report the flag with arms with oval, but I believe that the image was made from write description (the law says only «with the arms in center»).
Jaume Ollé, 11 Jun 1999

According to an official Historia de la Bandera Boliviana [b9oXX], the flag had even stripes and the 1826 arms were modified for the flag.
Christopher Southworth, 20 Jul 2003


Flag of 1826 (unequal stripes variation)

Flag of Bolivia in 1826 (unequal stripes variation)
image by António Martins, 26 Sep 1998

The flag was sometimes used with same proportions of stripes as the bicolored flag of 1825, as the law was incomplete (it did not say anything about the stripes’ sizes).
Ralf Stelter, 13 Jun 1999

According to an official Historia de la Bandera Boliviana [b9oXX], only the previous flag had uneven stripes.
Christopher Southworth, 20 Jul 2003

Version with the coat of arms

Flag of Bolivia in 1826 (unequal stripes variation)
image by Jorge Candeias and António Martins, 26 Sep 1998

Found this on a postcard in Häger’s Filatelie Encyclopedie (Alphen aan den Rijn: Brussel, 1979. 2 vols: p. 567, vol. 2). On the same postcard is a stamp issued in 1894. The coat-of-arms on this flag does seem to contain a pyramid, in fact it’s a mountain. There are 18 (French?) postcards from the same period (c. 1880-1890) about 18 different countries, issued by the same instance, but there is no reference to the author. They seem to be quite recent (c. 1970?) and its vexillological accuracy might not be very high.
Jarig Bakker, 03 Jun 1999 and 08 Jun 1999

Could be a variation of the 1826 flag, at least it has the same stripe order. The date 1894 is however strange, since the current flag was adopted in 1851… Maybe it was a commemorative or historical postcard?
António Martins, 06 Jun 1999

incorrect version reported

Flag of Bolivia in 1826 (unequal stripes variation)
image by André Godinho, 20 Jul 2003

In accordance to www.bolivia.com/Especiales2002/6_de_agosto/simbolos/bandera2.asp, the second bolivian flag has the coat of arms is a little different. This flag is the result of a modification made by the law of 25 july of 1826, when Antonio José Sucre was the president of Bolivia. Which flag is the correct?
André Godinho, 20 Jul 2003

According to an official Historia de la Bandera Boliviana [b9oXX], these are the national arms as adopted on 17 August 1825 (but not used on the flag) which were, in any case, replaced in 1826.
Christopher Southworth, 20 Jul 2003


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