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Greece Flag

The common device of all flags used in the war for independence in 1821 was a white cross. For much of its modern history, Greece has had two national flags. The striped flag with cross has been in use since 1822, and was approved in 1833 - the nine stripes are said to stand for the nine syllables of the Greek patriots' motto "Eleutheria a Thanatos" meaning "Freedom or Death".

The simple white-cross-on-blue flag dates from 1832, and was used as an alternative national flag, but not at sea. Only the striped flag was used at sea. From June 1975 until December 1978 the plain cross flag was used as the only national flag. The situation is now reversed, and the striped flag with the cross in the canton is now the only official national flag. The blue stands for the pure Greek sky, the white symbolizes the purity of the freedom fighters' cause. The cross has christian meanings.

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