The Greek Flag

Greek flag, meaning -

The Greek Flag

The Greek flag is endearingly referred to as the “sky blue and white” or the “blue and white,” similar to how the American flag is often called the “red, white and blue.” The upper left hand corner of the Greek flag is compromised of an equal-armed white cross; while the remainder of the flag contains nine blue and alternating white stripes. The top and bottom stripes are always blue and there are five blue stripes and four white ones.

The history of the Greek flag Dates back to 1822, soon after Greece declared independence from the Ottoman Empire in 1821. The flag was officially adopted by Greece on Dec 22, 1978. An earlier version had a diagonal cross instead of its current square one.

As in Greek mythology, there is a plethora of versions and meanings behind the flag. The nine stripes are said to represent number of syllables in the Greek phrase “Eleutheria H Thanatos,” or “Freedom or Death!” which was a battle cry during the last revolt against the Ottoman Occupation.

The cross represents the Greek Orthodox Church, the prevailing religion in Greece. The Church played a very vital role against Ottomans. Another speculation is that the stripes could represent the nine Muses, the goddesses of art and civilization. The colors blue and white symbolize a wide variety of interpretations. One is that they represent its renowned sea (vital to the economy) and sky, along with the white clouds or possibly the waves on the ocean. Blue may also represent the color of protection, while white could also possibly represent purity. Another interpretation is that the colors reflect traditional clothing in Greece and the islands. Still another idea is that the colors symbolize Aphrodite rising up from the sea foam.

Kantyli offers an abundance of gifts with the symbolic colors of blue and white -- everything from coffee mugs to magnets. Share your knowledge of the meaning behind these colors when you give that special gift to someone. View our blue and white products.

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