Last modified: 2008-09-27 by alex danes
Keywords: wallachia | romania |
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by Alex Danes, 15 September 2008
The revolutionary government of Wallachia adopted, on 14
June 1848, an horizontal tricolour blue, yellow and red, with,
in the central yellow stripe, the words DREPTATE ('justice'
in the Wallachian language) and, in Cyrillic characters,
FRĂŢIE ('brotherhood' in the Moldavian language). But in July
of the same year "...because until now it was not clear how
to make national flags..." the same government stated that
"...the national flag is a vertical tricolour dark blue, dark
yellow and carmine red: the blue at the hoist, the yellow in
the middle and the red at the fly.". This flag become very
popular in Moldavia and Transylvania too and was the origin
of the Romanian tricolour. In September 1848 Russia and
Turkey re-established the previous order and the flag
Mario Fabretto, 10 September 1996
The Decree nr. 1 from 14/26 June 1848 of the provisional Government established the following:
"The national flag will have three colors: blue, yellow and red. The motto, in Romanian, which will be inscribed not only on flags, but on monuments and public decrees, are these two words: Justice, Fraternity."The first flags of this kind had horizontal stripes, as can be seen in a painting with revolutionaries by Costache Petrescu. The motto was inscribed with black letters, in the middle of the yellow stripe: "DPEПTATE ФPЪЦIE" ("DREPTATE FRĂŢIE", meaning "Justice, Brotherhood"). The Army flags had a similar pattern. The day of 26 June is now celebrated in Romania as Day of the Flag because, for the first time, the blue-yellow-red tricolour was designated as national flag of the Romanians.
by Alex Danes, 15 September 2008
However, one month later, on 13/25 July, the provisional Government was obliged to come with additions in the decree nr. 252:
"Because until now it was not clear how to make national flags, we decree:This was the first time the Romanian tricolour, as known today, was used officialy as national flag. In 1867, when the Parliament of Romania had to decide the new flag of the country, the ex-revolutionary Nicolae Golescu proposed the 1848 pattern, which was eventually adopted, without the motto on it.
Art. 1. - The flags will be tricolour.
Art. 2. - The colours are: dark blue, light yellow1 and carmine red.
Art. 3. - Near the hoist is [the] blue [stripe], then yellow, then red, floating.
The Minister of Internal Affairs is asked to see that all the flags shall be made according to this decree."
The current flag of Romania has its origins, without any doubts, in the national flag of 1848. But why did the revolutionaries chose the colors and the pattern above it's hard to say. First of all, it is not the first time those colors were used together. They appear in the tassles of the Wallachian 1821 uprising flag, on the Wallachian military flags designed by prince Alexandru Dimitrie Ghica in 1834 and, most peculiar, on a flag used by the Romanian students in Paris, in March 1848, before the revolution started in Wallachia. The newspaper Gazeta de Transilvania, nr. 34 from 26 March 1848 (Julian Calendar) writes:
"After a few days, following the proclamation of the French Republic in Paris, [...] the young Moldo-Wallachian students from Paris unfolded their national flag with the colours blue, golden and red, as a symbol of the union between the Moldavians and Wallachians, [the colors being chosen] according to the Organic Statute."The Romanian emisaries negotiating with the Ottoman Porte declared that "long time ago, our ancestors had this colours on their ensign and flags. They are neither borrowed or imitated after present colours, nor a future menance."
by Alex Danes, 18 September 2008
In 1848, the Wallachian revolutionaries replaced the 1834 Army flags
with new ones. These had the same pattern as the 1848 national flag, horizontal version, and besides
the motto "Justice, Fraternity" on them was inscribed the county and city
of the military unit. The flags used the old rods from 1834, but the crown above the
eagle on top of each rod was cut. Only one flag of this kind survives, mainly because
after the revolution was ended, they were confiscated and destroyed.
The flag measures 124 cm by 110 cm and it's made of fine silk. On the blue stripe
is written the motto "Justice, Fraternity" on the yellow stripe "Olt County"
and on the red stripe "Slatina city". The flag is sewn in double tulle, for
Alex Danes, 18 September 2008