Mexican National and Cultural Symbols

Adrianna Dela Torre
5 min readJun 21, 2021

Mexico has a complex history that encompasses the Aztecs and Mayans civilizations, as well as the influence of the European western culture with the Spanish colonization period. As a result, there are a plethora of mythology, religion, art, and indigenous mexican symbols throughout the culture. Here are some of Mexico’s most important national and cultural symbols:

Mexican Flag

Flags or similar forms have been used as a society’s insignia or symbol throughout history. These flags or banners were either plain or decorated with a variety of embellishments, many of which depicted cultural and military symbolism.

The Mexican Flag is, without a doubt, the most important of Mexican Symbols

Mexico’s national flag consists of three vertical stripes with the Mexican coat of arms in the center. Green, white, and red make up the tricolor flag, which traditionally stood for independence, religion, and unification, respectively. The three colors are now supposed to represent hope, unity, and the blood of national heroes. The three colors are also Mexico’s national colors, which were adopted after the country gained independence from Spain.

The coat of arms and the length-width ratios of the flag have altered multiple times throughout history as the design of the coat of arms and the length-width ratios of the flag have been adjusted. The coat of arms, however, has remained consistent throughout, with an eagle perched on top of a prickly pear cactus, holding a serpent in its talon; the cactus is positioned on a rock that rises over a lake.

Coat of Arms

The formation of Tenochtitlan, Mexico’s historic capital, inspired the country’s coat of arms. The nomadic clan was traveling through the land, looking for a divine sign to guide them where they should build their city, according to Aztec legend.

The eagle eating a snake on the coat of arms (known as the Royal Eagle) is thought to be a representation of the divine omen that prompted the Aztecs to build Tenochtitlan in its current position.

The eagle could have been interpreted by pre-Colombian peoples as the sun god Huitzilopochtli, while the tableau could have been interpreted by the Spanish as a symbol of good triumphing over evil.

Mexican Festivals

Festivals are celebrations of heritage and religious commemoration. Some of these also celebrate significant historical events that helped shape Mexico as it is today.

Deeply rooted in Catholicism, the majority of these festivals are religious celebrations scattered throughout the calendar. Other celebrations include the fiestas or feasts. These are celebrations for patron saints of towns.

Fiestas literally translate to “feasts” while festivals translate to “very large celebrations”

1. Dia de Muertos

In Mexican culture, this is the most well-known celebration. Dia de Muertos, often known as Day of the Dead, is a deeply spiritual holiday that commemorates the dead while celebrating living.

The different face paints we frequently see in the media these days have made this celebration memorable.

2. Cinco de Mayo

Cinco de Mayo is another well-known celebration. The triumph of the Mexican Army over the French Empire in the Battle of Puebla in 1862 is commemorated on this day.

Although this is a well-known festival outside of Mexico, particularly in the United States, you might be surprised to learn that it is no longer considered a national holiday.

3. Mexican Independence Day

Mexican Independence Day is not the same as Cinco de Mayo, contrary to popular misconception. In fact, because Independence Day is celebrated on September 16th, that is about four months off the mark.

You’ll notice a significant increase in the amount of red, white, and green paraphernalia wherever you go in Mexico, and on the day itself, Mexico City witnesses the President’s grito, as well as parades, parties, and fireworks.

It’s culturally required to consume a cup of pozole (a typical Mexican soup or stew) on Independence Day to have a real Mexican experience. It’s cooked with beef and hominy, and you can season it with shredded lettuce or cabbage, chili peppers, onion, garlic, radishes, avocado, salsa, or limes.

4. Holy Week

In the Mexican calendar, this is the most widely observed holiday. The week-long commemoration honors Jesus Christ’s passion, death, and resurrection.

Almost every town and city in the country holds a public celebration for at least two weeks, beginning on Palm Sunday and ending on Easter Sunday, and sometimes continuing into the following week.

Movies, documentaries, and other programming on Mexican television, particularly in Latin America, focus on religious events and other issues related to the Catholic faith.

5. Quineañera

Quinceañeras are a famous cultural icon in Mexican society, despite the fact that they are neither a national holiday nor a national celebration of any kind.

This occasion commemorates a young woman’s passage from childhood to adulthood. This and other Quinceañera traditions are frequently observed on the 15th birthday of a young lady.

Quinceañera is a religious and familial celebration that highlights the value of family and society in a young woman’s life.

Mexican Cuisine

Mexican cuisine is well-known all around the world. In 2011, there were around 38,000 Mexican restaurants in the United States of America alone.

One of the reasons that Mexican food culture is so popular is that it frequently combines robust and delectable flavors. Mexican cuisine is full of spices and natural flavorings, making it anything but bland and dull. These dishes are also served with a variety of savory sauces, including Mole (a sauce that includes chilies, onions, and other flavorings. Mole negro is made with cocoa, while mole Amarillo is made with almonds and raisins), Salsa (a mixture of tomatoes, onions, chilies, and cilantro), and Guacamole.

Furthermore, since Mexican dishes are traditionally made of locally grown crops, this makes Mexican food very affordable.

Contemporary Mexican Society

Because of its rich history and influences from many various cultures and faiths, Mexico’s symbolism is diverse. Some of these are official symbols recognized by the Mexican government while others are culturally accepted symbols that characterize the cultures and traditions of Mexico.

Nonetheless, Mexico’s colorful culture has inspired many others around the world. Mexico’s culture has changed dramatically over the last few decades, and it now varies greatly across the country. Although many Mexicans reside in the urban area, rural areas continue to play an important part in defining the country’s overall lively community.

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Adrianna Dela Torre

Adrianna is a Professional Matchmaker and Relationship Counselor for latinlovemates.com.