The flag of Andorra is the main symbol of this European country. The insignia contains three colors: blue, yellow, and red; the three are organized in vertical stripes. Also, the coat of arms of Andorra is placed in the center of the flag. The current Andorra flag was instituted in 1866 and made official in June 1971.
Andorra is a small sovereign country, located in the southwest of Europe. Andorra la Vella is the capital of Andorra. The principality has seven parishes and a population of over 80,000 inhabitants.
Condominium established between the French monarchy and the bishopric of La Seo de Urgel in 1814 resulted in a flag that initially had the two colors of the county of Foix: yellow and red. In 1866 blue color was added and in 1914 the horizontal stripes were changed to vertical.
It is believed that the current flag of France is represented by the colors red and blue, and Spain is represented by red and yellow. The official language is Catalan; Spanish is also spoken and, to a lesser extent, French and Portuguese.
Andorra Flag meaning
There is no official meaning of the colors of the flag of Andorra. The simplest association of these is the combination of the blue of France, the yellow of Spain, and the red of both. However, popularly it is given some meanings.
The blue stripe of the flag represents the sky of Andorra. This would be a witness to the effort and work of its population to obtain its freedom and independence.
The yellow or golden color represents wealth. Also, the valuable natural resources that can be obtained within the territory of the principality.
The red stripe represents the Andorran blood spilled for the consolidation of the country. Besides, refers to the participation of Andorrans in conflicts with their neighbors.
There is a civilian version of this flag, without a coat of arms. This flag is very similar to the flags of Romania, Moldova, and Chad.
History of the Andorra Flag
In 1806 Andorra had a bicolor flag of the county of Foix, with the colors yellow and red. This was the first flag of what we know today as Andorra.
On the other hand, the colors of the current flag were adopted in 1866 and a blue stripe was added. This flag was made official on July 28, 1971. The flag’s design is attributed to the French emperor Napoleon III, who reigned from 1852 to 1870.
For many years, the blue, yellow, and red tricolor flag was used interchangeably in its horizontal and vertical forms. The horizontal one did not have a coat of arms, but the vertical one did. In joint celebrations with France, the horizontal flag was used.
Andorra: a small country in Europe
The official name of Andorra is the Principality of Andorra. This country is the largest of all the microstates in Europe. The Principality of Andorra has an area of 468 square kilometers and is located in the Pyrenees mountain range. The country is located between Spain and France.
There are several versions about the origin of the name of this country. One theory is that Andorra may derive from the Arabic al-Darra, meaning “forest”. At the time when the Saracens invaded the Iberian Peninsula, only immense forests made up the valleys of the Pyrenees.
Reign of Boris I and flag institutionalization
The situation changed when Andorra suffered a political crisis after the proclamation of the former Russian nobleman Borís Skósyrev as king Borís I in 1934. Boris officially adopted the horizontal flag, with a crown in the center of the yellow stripe in the middle.
After the end of Boris I’s reign thirteen days after his inauguration, the vertical flag was established as the official flag. The use of the coat of arms was also institutionalized.
After the approval of the Constitution of Andorra in 1993 and its entry into the United Nations Organization, the use of the flag was made official by law in 1996. The coat of arms was installed in the central part of the yellow vertical stripe.
Coat of Arms of Andorra
The coat of arms of Andorra occupies the central position on the flag. Together with the flag, the coat of arms of Andorra is an official symbol, as established by article 2.2 of its Constitution. Coat of arms uses is regulated in the Law on the use of State signs.
This symbol refers to the relations with Spain and France. Traditionally, the coat of arms is formed by four houses, two of these correspond to each of the co-princes. The four houses are:
- Bishopric of La Seo de Urgel. This has a golden mitre and crosier on a red background.
- From the county of Foix, now French. It is composed of seven red and yellow bars.
- From the former Crown of Aragon, now Spanish. It is composed of nine red and yellow bars.
- From the viscounty of Bearne, now French. Two red cows are located in this house.
The shield is presented with a ribbon in its lower part that has the motto Virtus Unita Fortior (Virtue is stronger united). It also includes a halo, a scroll, and emblems.