The initial white-blue-red flag was officially approved by the Decree of Russian Emperor Peter I the Great on the 20th of January 1705.
The color of the stripes was then understood according to the ancient explanation of the Universe: on the bottom is a material world, higher are the skies, and the highest is a divine world. Later it began to symbolize a unity of the three Eastern Slavic Nations - Byelorussia, Ukraine and Russia.
From the ancient times in Russia those three colors had a special symbolic meaning: white is nobility and sincerity; blue is truthfulness, commitment and purity; red stands for bravery, valor and love.
When hanging vertically the white stripe must be placed to the left and red - to the right.
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