The national flag of Estonia is a tricolour featuring three equal horizontal bands of blue (top), black, and white. The normal size is 105 × 165 cm. In Estonian it is colloquially called the "sinimustvalge" (literally "blue-black-white") , after the colours of the bands.
The flag remained illegal until the days of perestroika in the late 1980s when on 24 February 1989 the blue-black-white flag was again flown from the Pikk Hermann tower in Tallinn. It was formally re-declared as the national flag on 7 August 1990, little over a year before Estonia regained full independence.
There are a number of interpretations attributed to the colours of the flag. A historical interpretation of the colours has blue representing ancient freedom, black symbolizing lost independence and white, the promise of a brighter future. Another interpretation made popular by the poetry of Martin Lipp is as follows:
CMYK equivalents: C=91, M=43, Y=0, K=0
(1) Everyone has the right to display and use the Estonian flag as long as it is in accordance with the act and follows honoured traditions.(
(2) The Estonian flag is displayed on buildings and stationary flag staffs on Independence Day, Victory Day and the Restoration of Independence Day.
(1) The Estonian Flag is not lowered from the buildings of the Riigikogu, the Estonian Government, the Supreme Court, other courthouses, the State Audit, the Chancellor of Justice, Ministries, the Bank of Estonia, local and city governments, and border crossing points.
(2) The Estonian Flag is displayed at Estonian foreign representations according to the laws and norms of the host nation.
(3) The Estonian Flag is to be displayed on elementary and high schools, vocational schools, institutions of professional higher education and universities on school days.
(5) Flags that are continuously displayed must be illuminated during hours of darkness.
3 January - Day of Commemoration to the War of Independence fighters (Vabadussõjas võidelnute mälestuspäev)
2 February - Anniversary of the Tartu Peace Treaty (Tartu rahulepingu aastapäev)
24 February - Independence Day, Anniversary of the Republic of Estonia (Eesti iseseisvuspäev)
14 March - Native Language Day (Emakeele päev)
Every second Sunday in May - Mothers Day (Emadepäev)
9 May - Europe Day (Euroopa Päev)
4 June - National Flag Day (Lipupäev)
14 June - Day of Mourning and Commemoration (Leinapäev). Flags are flown as mourning flags
23 June - Victory Day (Võidupüha)
24 June - St John's Day or Midsummer's Day (Jaanipäev)
20 August - Restoration of Independence Day (Taasiseseisvumispäev)
1 September - Day of Knowledge (Teadmiste päev)
Every second Sunday in November - Fathers Day (Isadepäev)
(3) On Flag Days, government institutions, local and county governments and public legal entities,display the flag.
(4) The Estonian Government can make one-time decisions regarding the display of the Estonian Flag by government institutions, local and county governments and public legal entities, and on other days to mark events of importance for the Estonian state and its people.
(1) The Estonian Flag is hoisted at sunrise, no later than 8.00 and is lowered at sunset, no later than 22.00.
(4) The Estonian Flag is not lowered on St. John's Day, (Midsummer's Day) June 24.
(2) The minimum size of a flag displayed on a building or on flag staffs on the roof of the building must be105X165 centimetres.
(3) When the flag is displayed vertically the blue band should be on the observers left.
(1) If the Estonian Flag is raised with other flags, the Estonian flag must be at a position of superior prominence or honour.
(3) The flags of other nations are placed after the Estonian Flag alphabetically according to their French name.Only the flags of European Union countries are placed alphabetically according to their name in their ownlanguage.
(4) If the Estonian Flag is displayed with flags of other countries or international organisations and with Estonian county, city, parish or other Estonian flags, the Estonian county, city, parish or other Estonian flag must be placed to left of the international organisation's flag when looking at the line flags from behind.
(5) Depending on the location of the line of flags or on the number of flags, points 3-4 can be changed taking into consideration that the Estonia Flag must be at a position of superior prominence or honour.
Estonians consider themselves a Nordic people rather than Balts, based on their linguistic, cultural and historical ties with Sweden, Denmark and particularly Finland. In December 1999 Estonian foreign minister — and current president since 2006 — Toomas Hendrik Ilves delivered a speech entitled "Estonia as a Nordic Country" to the Swedish Institute for International Affairs.
Some have also suggested changing the country's official name in English and several other foreign languages from Estonia to Estland (which is the country's name in Danish, Dutch, German, Swedish, Norwegian and many other Germanic languages). Several Nordic cross designs were proposed already in 1919, when the state flag was officially adopted; one of them is shown here. As the tricolour is considered an important national symbol, the proposal did not achieve widespread popularity.