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Sierra Leone Flag

Sierra Leone Flag

Regular price $19.95 USD
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Flags, Symbols & Currency of Sierra Leone

The National Flag of Sierra Leone was officially adopted on April 27, 1961.

The National Flag of Sierra Leone is a tricolor featuring three equal horizontal bands of light green (top), white, and light blue. The green color represents the agricultural lands, the mountains, and the natural resources of the country. The white color symbolizes unity and justice. The blue color represents the sea and the natural harbor in Freetown. The flag has a width-to-length ratio of 2:3.

History of The Flag of Sierra Leone

The British determined the borders of Sierra Leone in 1895 and declared it as a British Protectorate. For several decades, the British continued to wield power in the region. During the British colonial rule, the Blue Ensign of the United Kingdom was flown to represent Sierra Leone. It was defaced with the coat of arms of the territory. In 1914, Sierra Leone was allowed to have its coat of arms. The Blue Ensign used here was now modified to incorporate the new emblem. Before independence from colonial rule, a new flag and coat of arms were designed and the flag was first hoisted at midnight of April 27, 1961 - the Independence Day for the country.

Historical flags of Sierra Leon

Flag of Sierra Leon Colony and Protectorate

Flag of Sierra Leon Colony and Protectorate
Flag of Sierra Leon Colony and Protectorate

Flag of Sierra Leon Colony and Protectorate

Flag of Sierra Leon Colony and Protectorate
Flag of Sierra Leon Colony and Protectorate

Symbols of Sierra Leone

The National Coat of Arms of Sierra Leone

The National Coat of Arms of Sierra Leone was adopted in 1960. It is composed of two rampant lions supporting a coconut tree and shield. Within the shield are three torches, representing peace and dignity, and the third lion against green mountains, a symbol of the Lion Mountains. The blue-white wavy bars at the base of the shield represent the seas. The national motto: “Unity, Freedom, Justice” is displayed on a ribbon below.

National Motto

“Unity, Freedom, Justice”

National Anthem

  • Anthem Title: “High We Exalt Thee, Realm Of The Free”
  • Music Composer: John Joseph Akar
  • Lyricist: Clifford Nelson Fyle
  • Date of Adoption: April 27, 1961

“High We Exalt Thee, Realm Of The Free” is the national anthem of Sierra Leone. The music of the anthem have been composed by John Joseph Akar. The lyrics of the anthem have been authored by Clifford Nelson Fyle. The anthem was officially adopted on April 27, 1961. 

“High We Exalt Thee, Realm Of The Free”


High we exalt thee, realm of the free;

Great is the love we have for thee;

Firmly united ever we stand,

Singing thy praise, O native land.

We raise up our hearts and our voices on high,

The hills and the valleys re-echo our cry;

Blessing and peace be ever thine own,

Land that we love, our Sierra Leone.


One with a faith that wisdom inspires,

One with a zeal that never tires;

Ever we seek to honour thy name,

Ours is the labour, thine the fame.

We pray that no harm on thy children may fall,

That blessing and peace may descend on us all;

So may we serve thee ever alone,

Land that we love, our Sierra Leone.


Knowledge and truth our forefathers spread,

Mighty the nations whom they led;

Mighty they made thee, so too may we

Show forth the good that is ever in thee.

We pledge our devotion, our strength and our might,

Thy cause to defend and to stand for thy right;

All that we have be ever thine own,

Land that we love, our Sierra Leone.

The Currency of Sierra Leone is the Sierra Leonean leone

The current official currency of Sierra Leone is Sierra Leonean leone (Le, SLL). It is subdivided into 100 cents. The Central Bank of Sierra Leone is in charge of issuing and distributing the currency.


Currently, coins in denominations of 10, 50, 100, 500 leones are in circulation.

The first leone coins were introduced in 1964 in denominations of 20, 10, 5, 1, and ½ cents. The design and composition were strongly influenced by the colonial state currency of British West Africa. These early coins included the portrait of the first president of Sierra Leone. The 50-cent coin was introduced in 1972 and included a similar design to the first coins, but included a portrait of Sierra Leone's second president.

Since 1974, various coins have been introduced inspired mostly by the changing face of leadership and government. These include cupro-nickel coins, such as the seven-sided one-leone coin which was introduced in 1976 to commemorate FAO (Food and Agriculture Organization). Octagonal nickel-bronze one leone coins were also introduced in 1980. However, the latter coin was less popular than lower denominations coins and circulated less frequently. The one leone coin was engraved with a bust portrait of General Joseph Saidu. To boost its circulation, it replaced the one leone note.

The civil war in Sierra Leone, which lasted from 1991-2002, caused a period of rampant inflation and total economic collapse. During this period, older coins were effectively devalued, which led to the introduction of new coin denominations. In 1996, coins of 10, 50, and 100 leones were introduced. These coins were made from nickel-plated steel, and included portraits and symbols of the most influential figures in the country's political history. The 50 leones coin was octagonal, while the 10 and 100 leones coins were round. In 2004, after the civil war, a bimetallic and ten-sided 500 leones coin was introduced to counter the devaluing lower denominations coins.


The Bank of Sierra Leone introduced a series of banknotes, including the 1, 2, and 5 leones, to officially replace the British West African pound. The notes remained relatively stable during economic upheavals. Other banknotes such as the 100 (1988), 500 (1991), 1,000 and 5,000 (1993), 2,000 (2000) and 10,000 leones (2004) have since been introduced by the Bank of Sierra Leone in 2010.

Sierra Leonean leone Banknote

Sierra Leonean 2000 leones Banknote
Sierra Leonean 2000 leones Banknote

Sierra Leonean leone Coin

Sierra Leonean 100 leones Coin
Sierra Leonean 100 leones Coin

Historical currencies of Sierra Leone

The Sierra Leonean dollar was used as the currency from 1791-1805. The Sierra Leonean leone was created on August 4, 1964, after the abandonment of the British West African pound. The transition to the leone enabled the people of Sierra Leone to have their currency. At the time of its introduction, 1 British West African pound was equal to 2 leones. The leone was also equivalent to 10 shillings.

British West African pound Banknote

British West African pound 20 shillings Banknote
British West African pound 20 shillings Banknote

British West African pound Coin

British West African pound One shilling Coin
British West African pound One shilling Coin



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