Last modified: 2006-06-09 by rob raeside
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Article 166 of the Constitution of the Republic of Bulgaria states that the flag of the Republic of Bulgaria is a tricolor: white, green, and red from the top, placed horizontally. According to the Bulgarian State Seal and National Flag Act, the three color fields shall be identical in form and size: Form - rectangular with a 3:5 width-to-length ratio. Size: 18 cm x 30 cm, 24 cm x 40 cm, 90 cm x 150 cm, 129 cm x 215 cm. Colors: white - with a degree of whiteness not less than 80%, green - #17-5936 TS according to the Pantone-textile scale, and red - #18-1664 TS according to the Pantone-textile scale. Standard samples of the colors of the national flag shall be kept by the Committee of Standards and Metrology.
Also available at www.government.bg (Bulgarian government site)
Dov Gutterman, 23 August 1999
Ivan Sache, 01 February 2006
The text of the law on the national coat of arms is published at
www.government.bg, as published in the State Gazette #67 on 05 August 1997:
The coat-of-arms of the Republic of Bulgaria is a state symbol of the independence and sovereignty of the Bulgarian people and the state.
(1) The coat of arms of the Republic of Bulgaria is a golden crowned lion, standing on his hind legs, in front of a dark red shield. The shield has a crown, whose prototypes are the crowns of Bulgarian rulers from the Second Bulgarian State, with five crosses and another cross above the crown. Two golden crowned lions, standing on their hind leg, facing the shield, hold it. They stand on two crossed oak branches with acorns. Under the shield there is a white band with the flag that reads: “Union Makes Strength”.
(2) The graphical and colour image of the coat-of-arms, established by the appendix, are part of this law.
(1) The coat-of-arms of the Republic of Bulgaria is on the state seal, as established by the State Seal Law.
(2) The coat-of-arms of the Republic of Bulgaria, placed elsewhere as well as the reproduction of the elements of the coat-of-arms on badges, commemoration medals and others is allowed only under an ordinance of the Council of Ministers.
Ivan Sache, 01 February 2006
The first Bulgarian Constitution (adopted on 16 April, 1879) says in its
23rd article: "The Bulgarian national flag is of three colors, and contain
<consists?> of horizontally placed white, green and red colors".
The second Bulgarian Constitution (adopted on 6 December, 1947) says in its 97th article: "The flag of the People's Republic of Bulgaria is of three colors - white, green, red, placed horizontally. In the left upper corner over the white strip is placed the coat of arms of the People's Republic.
The third Bulgarian Constitution (valid since 18 May, 1971) states in its 141st article: "The flag of the People's Republic of Bulgaria contains three colors, placed horizontally in the following order from up to down: white, green and red. In the left upper corner over the white strip is placed the coat of arms of the People's Republic."
This text was changed on 27 November, 1990, the new text ("The flag of the Republic of Bulgaria contains three colors, placed horizontally in the following order from up to down: white, green and red.") was valid until the adoption of the fourth, actual Bulgarian Constitution (since July 13, 1991).
Ivan Marinov, 20 March 2001
According to Fischer Weltalmanach '99, Russia, at the beginning of the 19th
Century the only independent Slavic state, was the example for all Slavic
states under Ottoman Turk and Austrian-Hungarian rule. These would be would
be Serbia, Slovenia,
Slovakia, Czech Republic, and Bulgaria. In the Bulgarian flag, the blue
stripe was replaced by the freedom color
Stefan Härtel, 17 October 1999
The flags in green, white and red colours were used by Bulgarian Legia
(revolutionary organisation founded in Serbia by Bulgarian emigrants led
by G. Rakovsky) 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). Now, the
"banner of Braila" is kept in the War Museum in Sofia. The Bulgarian Constitution of 1878 confirmed this flag (but rectangular
and without a lion).
Victor Lomantsov, 03 September 2000
Each year since the fall of the communist government, a ceremony is conducted
in Sofia, where the bishop sprinkles holy water on a symbolic horse's tail
and a flag from the Russo-Turkish war. The flag and horse's tail are provided
by the Museum of Military History. The celebration occurs on January 6,
a religious festival day in Bulgaria. In addition, the bishop throws a
silver cross into a river or lake, from which it is retrieved by a devout
From news sources provided by David Fowler, 10 January 2000
As far as I am aware, there is no "state flag" prescribed nor used (i.e.,
the national tricolour with the coat of arms in the upper stripe). The
closest thing to it is the Prime Minister's flag,
but with the white stripe double the width. It may be that the former custom of
having the coat of arms in the canton induced some to produce and use such a
flag by ignorance or eagerness, but I would be surprised if such flags would indeed be
used on the state institutions. If it exists, it would look like
this (drawn by Mihail Shcherbak).
Željko Heimer, 21 April 2005