Tag Archives: E-LEY-THE-RI-A-I-THA-NA-TOS

A Life in a Year – 13th January, The Design of the Greek Flag

Greece is my favourite place in all of Europe.  For me the very best way to see the country and the islands is to hop on a ferry and drift between them setting down now and then to enjoy the history, the people, the food, the ouzo and the Mythos!

The iconic symbol of the country is the blue and white flag of Greece that was was introduced on 13th January 1822 and is called ‘Galanolefci’, which means ‘blue and white’.  Originally it was blue with a white diagonal cross but the cross has now been moved to the upper left corner, and is symbolic of the Christian faith.  Being a seafaring nation, the blue of the flag represents the colour of the sea.  White is the colour of freedom, which is something that is very important to the Greeks after years of enslavement under foreign domination.  The nine stripes of the flag each symbolise a syllable in the Greek motto of freedom: E-LEY-THE-RI-A-I-THA-NA-TOS, which translates literally into ‘Freedom or Death’.

Naxos Greece

Greek Islands I have visited