The Mexican eagle grasping a snake in its beak and cactus in its talons portrays an ancient Aztec myth and symbolizes that New Mexico treasures its Spanish, Mexican and Native American traditions (New Mexico was settled by Spanish colonists and was later part of Mexico).
The Mexican eagle is shielded by the larger American eagle with wings outstretched, grasping arrows in its talons. This is a symbol of the change of sovereignty in 1846 between Mexico and the United States and symbolizes America's dominant yet delicate protection of New Mexico and its heritage and culture.
Crescit eundo is Latin for "It grows as it goes." It is a quote from a poem which refers to a thunderbolt increasing in strength as it moves across the sky.
1912 is the year New Mexico was admitted as a state to the Union.
New Mexico's flag displays a red sun with rays stretching out from it. There are four groups of rays with four rays in each group. This is an ancient sun symbol of a Native American people called the Zia.
The Zia believed that the giver of all good gave them gifts in groups of four. These gifts are The four directions - north, east, south and west. The four seasons - spring, summer, fall and winter. The day - sunrise, noon, evening and night. Life itself - childhood, youth, middle years and old age.
All of these are bound by a circle of life and love, without a beginning or end.