The red and gold flag is one of the oldest flag designs in the world and has the peculiarity of having been designed by means of a public competition. Before adopting the current colors, the Spanish flag consisted of a white background, the color of the House of Bourbon, and the Cross of Burgundy.
During the reign of Charles III (1716-1788), a new design was established, which has endured until today. It consists of three alternating horizontal red and gold stripes. The gold stripe is double the width of the red ones.
The current flag dates back to 1981 when the Laws on National Symbols were approved, which established the design of the current shield and its inclusion in the flag’s center stripe.
Charles III established the first design of the flag that used red and gold stripes (1785) through a competition called by the king. These colors ensured that the flag would be easily distinguishable at sea.
The only period in which the color and design of the flag were changed was during the Second Republic (1931) when the red color of the lower stripe was replaced with purple and the width of the three stripes were made equal.