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About Flags

While flags are everywhere and a part of daily life; most people don't pause to unlock the rich history and ideas they represent.  With NAVA and the community of knowledge it builds, members say "open, sesame" to reveal the wealth of symbols and stories behind flags.

Flags first developed in China, with the advent of silk, and spread across Asia to the Middle East, where crusaders brought them to Europe.  Beginning as markers on the battlefield, their use expanded to identification at sea, denoting who owned, taxed, and protected vessels.  Eventually they became the ultimate icon representing nations, 
peoples, sub-national and civic entities, organizations, military units, companies, and individuals.  Flag design began with heraldry, then spread its independent wings.  Even before flags, "vexilloids" served as earlier symbols of group affiliationtribes, armies, clansand the Romans' battle standard, the vexillum, gave its name to "vexillology", the study of flags.

Today, humans know hundreds of thousands of flags, each with its story and meaning.  More than just a piece of cloth, 
to quote NAVA member Lee Herold, "a flag is a visible symbol of an invisible bond".  NAVA welcomes the opportunity to share flag knowledge with everyone.