I’ve always admired the colourful life of the ancient Romans. That variety of colours was due to the everlasting conquests of nations to the East and West. Moreover, the Romans usually made associations with colours. For instance, purple was the colour of the Roman Emperors and power.
As an unwritten rule, colours were “transferred” into the Middle Ages which are supposed to have been a dark period of time. It’s a wrong statement, actually. Despite the dark shades assigned to the medieval world, people loved colours and richly coloured their clothes. Let’s take the example of yellow. Do you know what yellow was associated with in Venice in late 1300s? Women practicing the oldest profession were known by that colour.
What about the Renaissance? The same story. Colours, colours and again colours plus colour symbolism. And if I have to give a “Renaissance” example, I will choose Padua and Bologna where red was associated with medicine at that time.
You yourselves see that colours and their symbolism have played a major role through the centuries. And even nowadays our gray everyday life is colourful and colours are around us. But do we know their language? Do we understand colours when they speak? The answer is – to some extent. We know the colours of Marketing which always sell. But these are not the only colours in our lives. There are others like the colours of national flags.
The colours of the Greek national flag describe the country itself perfectly. It is often referred to as “sky-blue-white” and consists of three main symbols. The nine horizontal stripes are the nine syllables in the Greek motto: “Eleftheria i thanatos” (“Freedom or Death”). The cross in the left upper corner symbolizes the Greek Orthodox Church. And blue is the colour of sea and waves that describe the country as a major force in the world navigation.
Another national flag is the Italian one. Its green represents Italian plains & hills. White is the colour of the Alps covered with snow. Red is dedicated to all those who died in the Wars of Italian Independence.
As to our flag, it’s the same tricolor flag as the Italian one. The symbols are the same, too, i.e. our mountains (white), our beautiful nature (green) and the blood of all of the Bulgarian soldiers who died for our Liberation (red). And last thing. White and red are Pan Slavic colours and exist in the flags of nations of Slav origin. Our green replaces the Russian blue if the two national flags are compared as two Slavic nations.