Coat of Arms of Iraq

The national coat of arms of Iraq is a symbol of the country’s sovereignty and national identity. It features a golden eagle with outstretched wings, holding a scroll in its beak that reads “Allahu Akbar” (God is great) in Arabic script. The eagle is perched on a shield that is divided into four quadrants, each representing a different aspect of Iraq’s history and culture.

The top left quadrant features a golden lion holding a scimitar, representing the ancient Babylonian civilization and its military prowess. The top right quadrant depicts a golden date palm tree, symbolizing Iraq’s agricultural heritage and the importance of the Tigris and Euphrates rivers to the country’s economy. The bottom left quadrant shows a golden crescent moon and five-pointed star, which are traditional Islamic symbols and represent Iraq’s Muslim majority. The bottom right quadrant features a golden horse’s head, representing the Abbasid Caliphate and its cultural achievements in literature, science, and art.

The shield is surrounded by a golden border with eight pointed stars, which represent the eight provinces that formed Iraq at the time of its independence from the Ottoman Empire in 1932. The border is topped by a golden crown, which symbolizes Iraq’s sovereignty and independence.

The colors used in the coat of arms are significant as well. The golden eagle and symbols on the shield are set against a blue background, which represents Iraq’s connection to the Arab world and the importance of the Tigris and Euphrates rivers. The golden color of the eagle and symbols represents the wealth and prosperity of Iraq, while the green color of the date palm tree represents the country’s fertile land and agricultural abundance.

The history of the national coat of arms of Iraq dates back to the early 20th century, when the country was under British control. In 1921, the British appointed Faisal I as the first king of Iraq, and he commissioned a coat of arms for the new country. The original design featured a golden eagle with outstretched wings, holding a sword and a palm branch, and was surrounded by a wreath of oak and laurel leaves. This design was used until 1959, when a new coat of arms was adopted following the overthrow of the monarchy.

The current design was created by the Iraqi artist Muhammad Mahdi Al-Jawahiri in 1965. Al-Jawahiri was a prominent poet and artist who had previously designed the coat of arms for the United Arab Republic (a short-lived union between Egypt and Syria). His design for Iraq’s coat of arms was chosen from among 30 submissions in a national competition.

The coat of arms has undergone some changes over the years. In 1991, following the Gulf War, Saddam Hussein added the words “Allahu Akbar” to the scroll in the eagle’s beak, in an attempt to rally support among Iraq’s Muslim population. The crown on top of the shield was also changed to a more elaborate design, featuring a sunburst and a wreath of wheat. These changes were reversed following the overthrow of Saddam Hussein in 2003, and the coat of arms was restored to its original design.

Overall, the national coat of arms of Iraq is a powerful symbol of the country’s history, culture, and identity. It represents Iraq’s ancient civilizations, its Islamic heritage, and its modern aspirations for prosperity and independence. Despite the challenges that Iraq has faced in recent decades, the coat of arms remains a source of pride and unity for the Iraqi people.

Image Source: Coat of Arms, Public domain, Wikimedia Commons

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