The national symbols of a country are those used in official ceremonies and processions, as well as in any literature, events, physical materials or other portrayals to represent the country. There are strict laws and policies around such symbols, ensuring that they maintain their integrity at all times. National symbols become very special to those who share feelings of patriotic pride. The Brazilian national symbols include:
The National Flag
The National Flag of Brazil comprises a green background with a yellow rhombus or diamond shape in the centre. The yellow represents gold, or the wealth of Brazil, while the green symbolises the rich foliage and rolling fields of this beautiful country. In the middle of the yellow is a dark blue circle, littered with white stars. This represents the night sky and each of the 27 stars stands for a state. Across the centre of the blue sphere is a banner with the words “Ordem e Progresso”, which, when translated, reads “Order and Progress”.
The Coat Of Arms Of Brazil
The National Anthem
Like the flag, the National Anthem of Brazil is used at major sporting and political events, as well as at schools and other institutions. The anthem is in place to honour the country and to pay tribute to the flag. It was adopted in 1922, but was composed many years before that for the Brazilian military. In its original form, it was only orchestral. Then, lyricist Osório Duque Estrada wrote words to be sung along to the music and the national anthem was born.
The Coat of Arms
The Brazilian Coat of Arms features an intricate design of several features. There is a green, red and yellow star with five points. In the centre is a blue circle, which has a tobacco plant on one side of its border and a coffee plant on the other. In the blue circle are stars – the Southern Cross, surrounded by 27 small white stars representing each of the states of Brazil. Behind this composite image is a multi-pointed round shape,
resembling the sun.
Sabiá-laranjeira, or the Rufous-bellied Thrush
At the bottom of the Coat of Arms is a blue banner bearing the words “República Federativa do Brasil”, which translates to “Republic of Brazil”, as well as the date on which it achieved such political status, 15 November 1889.
The National Bird
The National Bird of Brazil is the Sabiá-laranjeira, or the Rufous-bellied Thrush. It is a renowned songbird, valued for its sweet melody. It is also admired for its distinctive orange belly. It measures about 25 centimetres in length and was declared a national symbol on 4 October 2002.
The National Flower
The National Flower of the country is the Ipê-amarelo or Tecoma chrysostricha. It is a native tree of the broad-leafed deciduous forests of South America and is characterised by the bright spray of yellow flowers, which come out before the spring leaves re-emerge. There is no English name for this plant.