The national flag of Honduras was adopted on March 7, 1866, based on the flag of the Federal Republic of Central America.In 1823 Honduras joined the United Provinces of Central America and adopted their flag. In 1866 it was amended; five cerulean stars were placed in the center to represent the five original Central American provinces. The colors and pattern are the same as the flag of the United Provinces of Central America. Civilian and government ships fly it as an ensign. Ships of the Honduran Navy fly as a naval ensign a version in which the five star emblem is replaced by the coat of arms of Honduras above an inverted arch of five small turquoise stars. The flag consists of three horizontal bands of equal width with an overall length:width ratio of 1:2. The two outer Cerulean Blue bands represent the Pacific Ocean and the Caribbean Sea, and also represent the blue sky and brotherhood. The inner white band represents the land between the ocean and the sea, the peace and prosperity of its people, and purity of thoughts. The five cerulean five-pointed stars arranged in an X pattern centered in the white band represent the five nations of the former Federal Republic of Central America (El Salvador, Costa Rica, Nicaragua, Honduras, and Guatemala) and the hope that the nations may form a union again.