The Flag of Denmark, the Dannebrog is red with a white Scandinavian cross. It is the oldest flag in the entire world.
The flag is supposed to have fallen from the sky during a battle in 1219 in Estonia. The Danes were about to lose the battle when this sign from above gave the warriors new energy, and made them win.
In reality the Dannebrog of 1219 was most likely a crusade banner - the war in 1219 was a crusade against the Estonians, who were not Christians.
The battle took place in the 15th of June, and every year the flags birthday is celebrated in this day.
In some countries the flag is a symbol of the state. In Denmark the Dannebrog is very much a symbol of the people, and the flag is used for all kinds off private celebrations - such as birthdays, weddings and Christmas. For Danes the Dannebrog is a sign of happiness and celebration and not of patriotism.
Images for kids
Gelre Armorial (fol. 55v), the entry for the king of Denmark showing the white-on-red cross banner.
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One of Hans Knieper’s heroic tapestries of Danish kings from 1585. King Erik Menved storming a castle. Note the two Danish flags. Original located at Kronborg Castle.
Danish soldiers return to Copenhagen after the Battle of Fredericia (1849), a Danish victory against Schleswig in the First Schleswig War (1894 painting by Otto Bache)
Dannebrog falling from the sky during the Battle of Lyndanisse, June 15, 1219. Painted by Christian August Lorentzen in 1809. Original located at Statens Museum for Kunst, Denmark
The Danish flag at the medal ceremony for the men's team pursuit at the 2008 Summer Olympics in Beijing.
Seal of Eric of Pomerania as king of the Kalmar union, 1398. A small Dannebrog banner is depicted as held by the three Danish lions in the top-left corner.