Coat of Arms of Singapore

The national coat of arms of Singapore is a symbol of the country’s sovereignty and identity. It features a red shield with five white stars arranged in a circle, representing the nation’s ideals of democracy, peace, progress, justice, and equality. The shield is supported by a lion on the left and a tiger on the right, both standing on their hind legs and facing each other. Above the shield is a white crescent moon, symbolizing a young nation on the ascendant, and below it is a blue ribbon with the national motto, “Majulah Singapura” (Onward Singapore) in gold letters.

The colors of the coat of arms are significant as well. Red represents universal brotherhood and equality of man, while white signifies pervading and everlasting purity and virtue. The lion and tiger are both traditional symbols of strength, courage, and majesty, and are also found on the country’s flag. The crescent moon is a symbol of Islam, which is the religion of a significant minority of Singapore’s population, while the blue ribbon represents the sea, which has played a crucial role in the country’s history and development.

The history of the national coat of arms dates back to 1959, when Singapore became a self-governing state within the British Empire. The government of Singapore decided to adopt a coat of arms to represent the new nation, and a design competition was held. The winning design was submitted by a young Chinese artist named Arthur William Turnbull, who was then a student at the Nanyang Academy of Fine Arts.

Turnbull’s design was inspired by the heraldic traditions of Europe and the symbolism of Southeast Asia. The shield and stars were based on the coat of arms of the city of Singapore, which had been granted by the British colonial authorities in 1948. The lion and tiger were chosen to represent the country’s multicultural heritage, as they are both important animals in Chinese, Malay, and Indian mythology. The crescent moon and blue ribbon were added to give the design a distinctive Singaporean flavor.

The national coat of arms was officially adopted on December 3, 1959, when Singapore became a fully self-governing state. It was later incorporated into the country’s constitution when Singapore gained independence from Malaysia in 1965. Since then, the coat of arms has been used on official documents, government buildings, and national monuments, as well as on the uniforms of the armed forces and police.

Over the years, the national coat of arms has undergone some minor changes and variations. For example, the size and position of the stars have been adjusted, and the lion and tiger have been given more realistic and detailed features. However, the basic design and symbolism of the coat of arms have remained unchanged, reflecting Singapore’s commitment to its core values and ideals.

In conclusion, the national coat of arms of Singapore is a powerful symbol of the country’s identity, history, and aspirations. It represents the nation’s commitment to democracy, peace, progress, justice, and equality, as well as its multicultural heritage and strategic location. The coat of arms is a reminder of Singapore’s past achievements and future potential, and serves as a source of inspiration and pride for all Singaporeans.

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

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