Peace Education

Peace symbol – 50th Anniversary!

(APRIL, 2008 – Post)

Maady W from

The disarmament symbol

-history of the disarmament symbol subject to much speculation

-created in London 50 years ago ( April, 1958 ) by Gerald Holtom, a professional artist and graduate of the Royal College of Arts, British textile designer and conscientious objector.

-specifically designed for an anti-war protest (anti-nuclear movement)

-The symbol was first seen in public during the 1958 Aldermaston march and from that moment onwards became identified with CND and its objective of nuclear disarmament.

-The symbol itself is a mix of the military semaphore signals N — representing nuclear — and D — representing disarmament (semaphore alphabet). However, Holtom, a conscientious objector during the Second World War, subverted this use of semaphores by placing the D over the N, the “upside down logo” signifying his anti-military principles. Although there remain alternative stories explaining the logo, the letters and interviews of Gerald Holtom clearly demonstrate the roots of his idea.

-it has become one of the world’s enduring icons

-Feb. 21, 1958 the symbol was accepted by the Direct Action Committee Against Nuclear War.

-appeared around the world not only as a sign for nuclear disarmament but also as the international hallmark of peace.


-deliberately never been copyrighted (and no intention of doing so). No one has to pay or to seek permission before they use it. A symbol of freedom, it is free for all.

Elizabeth By Elisabeth Jeong

Happy birthday, peace sign!

*This information is taken directly from these websites and has been compressed and compiled/edited by me:,29307,1725762_1555846,00.html,29307,1725762_1555846,00.html


6 responses to “Peace Education

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  5. I randomly came across this website after searching for “peace symbol” on google images. You wrote an interesting “history” of the peace symbol…but it’s very inaccurate.

    The peace symbol is an ancient pagan symbol which has existed for way, way longer than half a century. This “peace” symbol is basically an upside-down “wicked” cross inscribed in a circle. Symbols inscribed in circles are used for spells by wiccans/witches/etc.

    A cross represents man. Picture a man with his arms raised up so that they form a perpendicular line with his body. Now picture him raising his arms even more, as if he is raising his arms in revolt or “objection”. Man can object to things. Fair enough. But…

    Then the man with his upraised, rebellious fists is disrespectfully turned upside down and hung by his feet. Then the symbol of this action is inscribed in a circle.

    I’m sorry, but this symbol is not pro-peace at all. It is pro-hate, pro-evil, and…get this…pro-war and pro-nuclear. It is anti-man, not anti-war. If you want to respectfully debate the origins of this symbol, feel free to email me.

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