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Maurice / Moris (République de Maurice / Repiblik Morisiê)

Last modified: 2010-02-19 by antónio martins
Keywords: mauritius | key (red) | anchor (red) | star: 5 points (fimbriated) | dodo | stella clavisque maris indici | sambur deer | deer (red and white) | deer: sambur |
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Mauritius flag
image by Željko Heimer, 13 Jun 2002
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About the flag

The Album 2000 [pay00] says:

1. National Flag and Jack. CSW/--- 2:3
Four-striped red over blue over yellow over green.
Željko Heimer, 13 Jun 2002

Flag adopted upon independence, on 9 January 1968.
Phil Nelson, Oct 2005

On 12 March 1992 Mauritius became republic, but the independence flag didn’t change.
Jan Zrzavy, 09 Oct 2002


According to the DK Ultimate Pocket Flags of the World (1997) [rya97], «the flag was designed by the College of Arms in Britain prior to independence and is a simple statement of the colors found in the coat of arms». The same page (110) has also a more bombastic symbolism:

  • Red reflects independence
  • Blue for the color of the Indian Ocean
  • Yellow symbolizes a bright future
  • Green represents the lush vegetation of the island.
The symbolism was invented after independencem so should be taken with some grains of salt of the Indian Ocean…
Jarig Bakker, 08 Mar 2004

The flag was actually registered at the College of Arms on 9 January 1968, it was granted by Royal Warrant and the flag first officially hoisted on 12 March 1968 (the day of independence). However, whatever the College’s original intention the significance of the colours are now officially given (although rewritten by myself) as: The red stripe represents the struggle for freedom and independence, while blue stands for the Indian Ocean. The yellow stripe symbolizes the new light of independence, and the green represents agriculture together with the yearlong colour of a lush country. (I unfortunately cannot find the original wording.
Christopher Southworth, 08 Mar 2004

This could easily be interpreted as only minor variants (through political expediency, perhaps) of the four quarters of the arms. The red key could be seen as equating to self-determination, as could the golden settlers’ ships to the search for a new future. The star over the waters would easily equate to the ocean, as would the sugar canes to the vegetation.
James Dignan, 08 Mar 2004

Color shades

All the sources I consulted (e.g. [pay00], [smi82], [vdv00]) have these colours in “normal” shades. This particularly goes for the blue, and to less degree (or maybe less obvious) for the red. The shades are not particularly important when looking at the national flag only — but when it comes to ensigns, the questions arise — since these are based on british model, one would expect the shades to be the same as for the Union Jack.

For the red I have not noticed anything special — it seems that all these sources have the same red thoughout and I would tend to present it as normal R (), but for the “samness” with the “Post Office Red”, R+ ().

The blue is not that simple, here is how blue used in different flags would be coded like this:

[pay00] [smi82] [vdv00]
National Flag B B B
CG Ensign B B+++
Civil Ensign B B (*) B
State Ensign B B+++

* [smi82] shows civil ensign with blue somewhat lighter then normal, but that may be just a printing effect (I think)

So, either the national flag in the state ensign is indeed different from other variations (as Smith has it), or the blue ensign is not that dark as in British case.
Željko Heimer, 13 Jun 2002

Air Force markings

Fuselage Marking

Mauritius fin flash
image by Željko Heimer, 13 Jun 2002

Roundel of the national colours. [pay00]
Željko Heimer, 13 Jun 2002

Mauritius Coast Guard operated three planes and use the roundel as above.
Dov Gutterman, 20 Jun 2004

Fin flash

Mauritius fin flash
image by Vincent Morley and Dov Gutterman, 10 Feb 2000

Mauritius’ planes carries a 1:1 version of the national flag.
Dov Gutterman, 10 Feb 2000

Mauritius Coast Guard operated three planes and use the national flag as fin flash. The book [cos98] shows the fin flash in square form, but a photo on line shows a regular flag.
Dov Gutterman, 20 Jun 2004

The national flag is painted on the fin, says Album 2000 [pay00]
Željko Heimer, 13 Jun 2002

Coat of Arms

CoA of Mauritius
image by Željko Heimer, 13 Jun 2002

The coat of arms of Mauritius is described as follows in Dorling-Kindersely Pocket-Book [rya97]:

The coat of arms was granted on 25 August 1906, and depicts various attributes of the island. In the lower right quarter is a key and on the left-hand side is a white star, which are referred to in the Latin motto "Stella Clavisque Maris Indici" ("The Star and the Key of the Indian Ocean"). The supporters are a dodo and a deer each holding a sugar cane, the island’s staple crop.
The caption of the image in the same source gives additional details:
  • the dodo is extincted since the 18th century
  • in the first quarter, a ship us symbolizing colonization
  • in the second quarter, palm trees represent the country’s tropical vegetation.
Smith (1976) [smi76] says that the deer is a sambur deer, imported from Java in 1639 and that the dodo became extinct in the 16th century.
Ivan Sache, 15 Jun 2002

The motto on the scroll reads «STELLA CLAVISQUE MARIS INDICI» («Star and key of the Indian sea»).
Vincent Morley, 03 Mar 1997

In some sources the star is shown voided. According to Album 2000 [pay00] this is wrong.
Željko Heimer, 13 Jun 2002

Anything below this line was not added by the editor of this page.