European flag is the symbol for two things – one of them is European Union, but other is Europe’s unity and identity. The circle which is made of golden stars symbolizes harmony and solidarity between European people. This circle is made of twelve stars, but their number has nothing to do with the number of European Union members. The number “12” is traditionally the symbol of unity, completeness and perfection, therefore, the flag can remain unchanged regardless of European Union enlargements. The number “12” is also the number of months in a year and the number of hours shown on a clock, but the circle is a symbol of unity. Basing on this symbolism, in the middle of 20th century the Council of Europe created a symbol for its own use – it was the circle of twelve golden stars on a blue background, representing the ideal of unity among European people. Later the Council of Europe encouraged other European institutions to adopt the same flag, and in the year 1985 the flag was adopted by all European Union institutions as the official emblem of the European Union. The European flag is the emblem of the European Commission, but other European Union institutions and bodies use their own emblems in addition to the European flag.
The melody of European anthem comes from 9th Symphony composed by Ludwig Van Beethoven in the year 1823. For the final movement a composer set the “Ode to Joy” which is written by Friedrich von Schiller in the year of 1785. “Ode of Joy” expresses an idealistic vision of the human race. In the universal language of music without words this anthem expresses the ideals of freedom, peace and solidarity for which Europe stands. In the year of 1972 the Council of Europe decided to adopt Beethoven’s “Ode to Joy” theme as its own anthem, but in the year of 1985 it was adopted as the official anthem of the European Union. It should be mentioned, that this is the anthem not only of European Union, but also of Europe. Of course, this anthem is not intended to replace the national anthems of European Union members, but for celebration of their united values and their unity in diversity.
Europe Day – 9th of May
On 9th of May in the year of 1950 Robert Schuman proposed to create an organized Europe. This proposal is known as the “Schuman declaration” and is considered to be the beginning of the European Union. Because of this fact 9th of May has become a European symbol or, in other words, Europe Day which is one of symbols that identifies the political entity of the European Union. Europe Day is the day which is intended for different activities and festivities which bring European people closer to each other, as well as bring Europe closer to its citizens.
The motto of the European Union is “United in diversity”. This motto means that through European Union, striving for prosperity and peace, Europeans are united, and their diversity in culture, traditions and language is a positive asset for European continent.