Panji / Pandi

Panji / Pandi | @museumxst0ries via National Museum of the Philippines Website

Panji/Pandi is the collective term for the flag in the southern Philippines.

There are, however, other terms used based on size, shape, and function such as the sambolayang, the highest ranking flag symbolizing the power of the sultan with three trailing streamers and erected at the center; pasandalan, the second-ranking flag which stands for Lake Lanao and the Maranao group erected on the right of the sambolayang; payong, the third-ranking flag, either single or tiered and placed on the left of the sambolayang; pamanai, the fourth-ranking flag, smallest and most numerous denoting the people under the authority of a sultan or datu thus surrounds the bigger flags; dopo, the fifth ranking flag and usually displayed during maritime trade and gada-gada, a pair of triangular flags positioned at the foot of the pasandalan.

Flags are displayed during parades, weddings, coronations, mourning ceremonies, rice rituals, the birth of a child, and when a couple moves to a new home.

White flags or a group of flags with Qur’anic line, “May Allah Bless the Soul of the Dead” hangs in front of the house of the bereaved family. Small bunting on sticks or strings is placed along the road or path leading to the ceremonial house during gatherings or celebrations. Wedding flags are hung inside the house or mounted on the mast of the ceremonial boat.

A significant aspect of the flag is the symbolic designs usually done in applique. The barong (bolo), turtle, cannon, kris, and naga are male symbols while floral motifs and the comb are female symbols.

Did you know that Pampanga and Tarlac are represented on the Philippine flag? The period between May 28 and June 12 leading up to Philippine Independence Day are known as National Flag Days in the Philippines! Here are the two words for “flag” in Kapampángan!

PANDÎ • (puhn-DEE’)
Tagálog (Filipino): bandílà, watáwat

BANDÉRA • (buhn-DEH-ruh)
Tagalog (Filipino): bandílà, watáwat

Pandî – from Sanskrit पञ्जी (pañjī, “register”), via Malay panji (“pennant”)

Bandéra – from Spanish bandera (“flag, banner”)

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