Sunday, 12 July 2009

Bulgaria - Current

The flag of Bulgaria (Bulgarian: знаме на България, zname na Balgariya) is a horizontal tricolour of three equal bands of colour, from the top white, green and red. The bands will be of a ratio of 3:5, width to height.[1] The colours of the flag are specified as, white, whiteness no less than 80%, green, 17-5936 on the Pantone textile scale and red 18-1664.[2]

The flag was originally adopted following the Russo-Turkish War (1877-1878). Flags of green, white and red were used by Bulgarian Legia (a revolutionary organisation founded in Serbia by Bulgarian emigrants) in 1861-1862. The first white-green-red striped flag was made by S. Paraskevov and presented to Russian-Bulgarian troops (during the war against Turkey) in the Romanian town of Braila in 1877. It was a swallow-tailed banner. There was a lion and inscription "BULGARIA" in the centre (in Cyrillic characters).[3] Therefore the origins of the Bulgarian flag come from that of Russia, being the only independent Slavic state, with the green replacing the blue stripe in the tricolour.[4] Other sources give the flag of Fillip Totyu’s detachment, dating prior to the Liberation (1867) and the flag flown by Rakovski (red-white-green) in Andrea Saco’s famous painting as the fist use of these colours.[5] The symbolism of the colours is vague however the red and white could come from the traditional colours of the Martenitsi and the legend behind it,[6] with the green symbolising freedom.

[2] Flag of Bulgaria, Wikpedia,
[3] Victor Lomantsov, Flags of the World,
[4] Stefan Härtel, Flags of the World,
[5] National and State Flag, Heraldika Bulgaria,
[6] Local Customs Bulgaria,,
[fig1] Željko Heimer, Flags of the World,

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