Since the earliest days of Esperanto, the colour green has been used as a symbol of mutual recognition and it appears prominently in all Esperanto symbols.
The Green Star (verda stelo) was first proposed in an 1892 article in La Esperantisto (The Esperantist) for use as a symbol of mutual recognition among esperantists.
The Esperanto flag is composed of a green background with a white square in the upper lefthand corner, which in turn contains a green star. The green field symbolizes hope, the white symbolizes peace and neutrality, and the five-pointed star represents the five continents (Eurasia, North America, South America, Oceania, Africa). The flag was created by the Esperanto Club of Boulogne-sur-Mer, initially for their own use, but was adopted as the flag of the worldwide Esperanto movement by a decision of the first Universal Congress of Esperanto, which took place in 1905 in that town.
By recommendation of the board of the World Esperanto Association, the flag should have the following proportions. The ratio of the width of the flag to the height of the flag to a side of the white square should be 3 to 2 to 1. The ratio of a side of the white square to the radius of a circle enclosing the star should be 10 to 3.5.
Some Esperanto speakers consider the traditional flag too nationalistic for an international language, so many organizations no longer recommend its use and, instead, use the jubilea simbolo (jubilee symbol, two green "E"s facing each other on a white field). This symbol was created in 1987 by a Brazilian Esperantist to mark the centenary of the creation of Esperanto. On the other hand, this new symbol is derogatively called the melono (melon) by some.
Most Esperantists, however, continue to hold the verda stelo dear as a symbol of international or supranational solidarity, and regard the preference of one symbol over another as a purely personal choice. At most Esperanto congresses, all three main symbols can be seen in use on displays or being worn as badges.
Sometimes, Esperanto travellers will display the flag, wear a badge with one of the above symbols, or even wear green clothes, to make themselves known to other Esperanto speakers.
In 1905, delegates to the first conference of Esperantists at Boulogne-sur-Mer, unanimously approved a version, differing from the modern only by the superimposition of an "E" over the green star. Other variants include that for Christian Esperantists, with a white Christian cross superimposed upon the green star, and that for Leftists, with the color of the field changed from green to red.
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