Mythical creatures are spellbinding, mysterious, haunting and have been talked about for generations. From unicorns and fairies to trolls, vampires and ogres, such characters have dominated books, songs and even family theatre shows, with the puppet-led extravaganza, Dragons and Mythical Beasts, currently touring the UK. We love hearing about weird and wonderful hybrids and spiritual figures. But which countries have mythical creatures on their flag? Let’s take a closer look.
Bhutan, Wales and Malta - Dragon
The countries of Bhutan, Wales and Malta all have really eye-catching dragons on their national flags. These countries all have hugely different geographical locations and cultures. So what’s the meaning behind the dragon symbol? Well firstly, the red dragon of Wales symbolises the fearlessness of the Welsh nation. Welsh kings first adopted the symbol in the fifth century to show their authority following Roman withdrawal. The dragon on the Bhutan flag first came about when the Indo-Bhutan treaty was signed in 1949. The dragon was chosen because locals called the country ‘Druk’ which is the name of the Bhutanese thunder dragon.
The Maltese flag is a little different from the other two as you have to look hard to find the dragon. In the top left-hand corner of the flag is the George Cross - a medal awarded by the King of England for bravery. In the middle of the George Cross is an image of Saint George slaying his dragon. Malta was awarded the George Cross for helping the Allies in World War II.
Serbia, Albania and Montenegro - Double-Headed Eagle
Serbia, Albania and Montenegro, three neighbouring countries in the Balkans, have an eagle with two heads on their flags. The double-headed eagle has long been a symbol of Serbia. It’s thought one head is turned towards a ‘heavenly kingdom’ while the other is turned towards an ‘earthly kingdom.’ For Albania, the double-headed eagle represents the sovereign state of Albania and for Montenegro, the eagle symbolises the unity of church and state.
The Flag of the President of the Republic of Lithuania - Unicorn and Griffin
While the national flag of Lithuania is yellow, green and red, the Flag of the President of the Republic of Lithuania features both a unicorn and a griffin. The griffin, a hybrid of an eagle and lion, represents both the eagle’s keen eye and the lion’s strength and pride. The unicorn symbolises wisdom, tolerance and innocence.
If you’d like to step into a mythical and imaginative world, book your family theatre tickets to Dragons and Mythical Beasts today. This is one of the best family shows of the moment, so treat the kids to an adventure they won’t forget and make memories to last a lifetime. The spectacular and realistic puppetry used to bring each character to life is captivating, and the little ones will love to meet everyone from the Stone Troll to the not-so-sweet Tooth Fairy.