Skip to main content

European Flag - Infographic text only

The European flag symbolises both the European Union and, more broadly, the identity of Europe. Over the years, it has become the most recognisable symbol of a European identity.

Symbolism and graphic elements

Circle of gold stars

  • Unity, solidarity and harmony among the peoples of Europe

Number 12

  • Symbol of perfection, entirety
  • Not related to number of member countries


  • Golden stars against a blue sky

History of the European flag

8 December 1955

First adoption of the flag by the Council of Europe, an international human rights organisation distinct from the EU.

11 April 1983

The European Parliament proposes that the European Communities (EEC), predecessors of the EU, use the flag.

28-29 June 1985

The European Council adopts the European flag design, with the official status of a logo, for the EEC.

29 May 1986

The European flag is first raised outside the Berlaymont building, seat of the European Commission.

November 2015

A commemorative euro coin was issued to celebrate 30 years of the EU flag.