Posted: 12.05.2023 09:33:00

Belarusian Statehood. Our main symbols

Statehood is the most important value and testifies to the nation’s ability to develop independently —  the President of Belarus is convinced of this, and this point of view has found a warm resonance in the hearts  of Belarusians. Belarusian statehood has its own history and foundations. As well as unique and unshakable symbols, institutions and traditions. The Belarusian Statehood project of The MT tells about the main ones. 

The country will celebrate the Day of the State Flag, the State Emblem, and the State Anthem of the Republic of Belarus — second Sunday in May.
Each modern state has symbols that express its political independence and sovereignty, the history of formation and development, and national identity. These main symbols are always three — the flag, emblem and anthem. These symbols of the Republic of Belarus reflect the historical, spiritual and moral features of the nation, the peculiarities of the culture and worldview of the Belarusian people, their desire for self-determination and independent development. 
Exactly a month ago, important news spread around the country. Aleksandr Lukashenko signed a decree on the basis of which the name of the state holiday was changed from Day of the State Emblem of the Republic of Belarus and the State Flag of the Republic of Belarus — second Sunday in May to Day of the State Flag, the State Emblem, and the State Anthem of the Republic of Belarus — second Sunday in May. The new name will allow paying tribute to all three state symbols of Belarus. 

The State Anthem of the Republic of Belarus

The State Anthem of the Republic of Belarus is a work to music by Nestor Sokolovsky and lyrics by Mikhail Klimkovich and Vladimir Korizna.
The State Anthem of modern Belarus has retained the musical basis of the anthem of the Belarusian Soviet Socialist Republic. The music of Nestor Sokolovsky was popular and respected by people of different generations, therefore, when creating the anthem of independent Belarus, it was decided to preserve it. Then a competition was announced to create the text of the anthem.
The words of the State Anthem reflect the conditions for the development of the Republic of Belarus as a sovereign, peace-loving state, emphasise the patriotism and diligence of citizens, the fraternal relationship between representatives of all nationalities living in the country.
By the way, the SB.Belarus Segodnya newspaper also stood at the origins of the modern state anthem. On May 11th, 2002, it reported: ‘The creation of state symbols continues. The competition for the creation of the country’s anthem has reached the finish line. On May 8th, Aleksandr Lukashenko listened to five versions of a new song about the main thing proposed by the commission in the Big Hall of the Palace of the Republic... A casual discussion revealed a common, it seems, doubt. The conclusion was formulated by Aleksandr Lukashenko, “An impeccable text that meets all the requirements of the anthem does not yet exist. The words need to be improved, especially those that are proposed for the music of Nestor Sokolovsky. Available options should be broadcast on radio and television so that all citizens can form their own opinion about them.”’
All versions of the state anthem — versions to music by Vasily Rainchik, Vladimir Olovnikov and an updated arrangement by Nestor Sokolovsky — were performed by the orchestra and choir on radio and television. Five versions of the text were published in The SB dated June 7th, 2002. Opinions and feedback on how the Belarusian anthem should be could be expressed by phone, as well as by letter or telegram to the Information Ministry.
In total, 119,000 people responded to the call. Citizens preferred the music of Nestor Sokolovsky.
On July 2nd, 2002, the President approved the text and music of the anthem. And on December 8th, the Let’s Sing the Anthem Together campaign was held for the first time in the country at the initiative of the ONT TV channel, which was supported by the Head of State. It has replenished the treasury of wonderful traditions of independent Belarus.
An anthem is not just good words set to good music.
These words and music always pierce your heart if you are a citizen of your country. If you are a true patriot. If you agree with every syllable, with every note!
The anthem captures you from the first notes and the first phrase, captures you tightly and does not let go until the very final chords, and even after. It is necessary to participate in it, sometimes empathise to goosebumps in the body, to the most sincere tears. There are not only poetic words that stir the heart of every Belarusian, but also powerful music that calls and unites us. At the first sound, you proudly stand in the general ranks of fellow citizens and begin to hum well-known, simple and understandable words.

We, Belarusians, are peaceful people,
Wholeheartedly devoted to our Motherland.
We are faithful friends, growing up
Living in a hardworking and independent family…

The State Emblem and the State Flag were adopted following the results of the first referendum in the history of sovereign Belarus, which took place at the initiative of the President on May 14th, 1995. 75.1 percent (3,622,851 people) voted for the adoption of the new flag and emblem, 20.47 percent (988,839 people) voted against, 211,792 ballots on this issue were declared invalid.

The State Emblem of the Republic of Belarus

The State Emblem of the Republic of Belarus is a golden outline of the State Border of the Republic of Belarus placed in a silver field, superimposed on the golden rays of the sun rising over the globe. At the top of the field is a five-pointed red star. The emblem is framed by a wreath of golden ears intertwined with clover flowers on the right and flax flowers on the left. The wreath is intertwined three times on each side with a red-green ribbon, in the middle part of which, at the base of the State Emblem of the Republic of Belarus, the words ‘Republic of Belarus’ are inscribed in two lines in gold.

The emblem reflects the best qualities and traits of the Belarusian national character: diligence, goodwill, striving for the best. The elements of the emblem are well thought out, carry a deep semantic load and are closely interconnected.

The State Flag of the Republic of Belarus

The State Flag of the Republic of Belarus is a rectangular panel consisting of two horizontal coloured stripes: the top one is red, and the bottom one is green. The ratio of the width of the red and green stripes is 2:1. The ratio of the width of the State Flag of the Republic of Belarus to its length is 1:2. At the pole there is a Belarusian national ornament of red colour on a white field, which is 1/9 of the length of the State Flag of the Republic of Belarus.

The use of the national ornament as an element of state symbols is the most important feature and originality of the State Flag of the Republic of Belarus. Ornamentation is an unusually rare element, despite the fact that since ancient times (before the emblem and flag) ornamentation has been a characteristic sign or hallmark of all cultural peoples, decorating and marking dwellings, utensils, clothes, weapons, goods, religious things and buildings etc. The mastery of the ornament, has been and remains the most important feature of the Belarusian national culture, regardless of its scope, material and theme. The ornament on the Belarusian flag directly and directly testifies to ethnicity, points to the ancient origin of the Belarusian people, to the traditions of conscientious work and strict order.
The national flag of the Republic of Belarus is mounted on a staff (flagpole), which is painted in golden (ochre) colour. The ratio of the width of the State Flag of the Republic of Belarus to the length of the staff is 1:3.

Story behind

• On January 3rd, 2002, — the commission for holding a competition for the creation of the text and music of the national anthem was approved;
• From June 6th to June 9th, 2002, — all versions of the anthem were submitted for the competition are broadcast on Belarusian television and radio;
• On June 7th, 2002, — five competitive texts of the anthem were published in SB;
• On June 10th, 2002, — the competition commission made a recommendation based on public opinion poll data;
• On July 2nd, 2002, — Presidential Decree No. 350 approved the text and musical version (notes) of the State Anthem of the Republic of Belarus.

The emblem, flag and anthem of our state are endowed with bright features that immediately remind of our native country. They are easily recognisable among all the state symbols of the world community, with the help of simple and understandable means reflect the glorious history of the people of Belarus, its centuries-old traditions, the ideological foundations of the state, goals and principles.

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