Flag of Ukraine
The national flag of Ukraine has two equally sized horizontal bands of blue and yellow, according to the Constitution of Ukraine, Article 20. The combination of blue and yellow as a symbol of Ukrainian lands comes from the flag of the Kingdom of Galicia–Volhynia used in the 12th century. As a national flag, the blue and yellow bi-colour has been officially used since the 1848 Spring of Nations, when it was hoisted over the Lviv Rathaus.
Although use was interrupted, the flag was officially adopted as a state flag for the first time in 1918 by the short-lived West Ukrainian People’s Republic and subsequently used by the Ukrainian People’s Republic. When Ukraine was part of the Soviet Union, the flag was outlawed. Then before 1949, there was no official state flag until the adoption of the red-azure flag of the Ukrainian SSR (Ukrainian Soviet Socialist Republic).
The blue and yellow flag was provisionally adopted for official ceremonies in September 1991 following Ukrainian independence, and then finally officially restored on January 28, 1992 by the parliament of Ukraine.
Ukraine has celebrated Flag Day each year on August 23rd since 2004.
In addition to the normal horizontal format, many public buildings, such as the Verkhovna Rada, use vertical flags. Most town halls fly their town flag together with the national flag in this way; some town flags in Ukraine exist only in vertical form. The proportions of these vertical flags are not specified. When hung like a banner or draped, the blue band should be on the left. When flown from a vertical flagpole, the blue band must face the mast.
Display on Special Days
The Flag of Ukraine should be displayed at full staff on the following days:
January 1: New Year’s Day
January 7: Christmas (Julian)
January 22: Ukrainian Unity Day
March 8: International Women’s Day
May 1 & 2: International Workers’ Day
May 9: Victory Day over Nazism
June 28: Constitution Day
August 23: Flag Day
August 24: Independence Day
November 21: Day of Dignity and Freedom
December 6: Armed Forces Day
December 25: Christmas (Gregorian/Neo-Julian)
Ukrainians commonly refer to the flag as yellow and light blue — a different version of the flag used during UNR (Ukrainian National Republic) years (1917–1921) with yellow on the top and blue on the bottom.
The yellow on the top represents golden domes (cupolas) of Christian churches and the blue the Dnieper river.
The current flag has the common explanation of “blue sky above yellow field of wheat” or “blue sky over sunflowers.” The sunflower is the national flower of Ukraine.
The wheat description is significant, as Ukraine is considered Europe’s breadbasket.