Here's why the color orange and the lion are a part of the Netherlands

When we go to watch soccer games or go to Kings Day, we see orange everywhere. And the lion also belongs to the Netherlands. Why is this?

The origin of orange

It all started with Willem van Oranje. He was the prince in our royal family in the sixteenth century. At the age of eleven, his cousin René of Chalon died. He had owned the French principality of Orange, and gave it to Willem after his death as an inheritance. With the principality came the title "Prince of Orange''. So from then on he was called Willem van Oranje: Willem of Orange. And because of that, it became our national color. Orange also used to be in our flag, instead of red.


Orange in sports games and King's Day

Orange is said to have been worn for the first time at a soccer game in 1907. Now we see a sea of orange during soccer games and King's Day. All kinds of orange items are sold by businesses. Orange t-shirts, scarves, hats and sunglasses are worn by everyone.


The lion

Then there's the lion. In the Middle Ages, the German family Nassau started using the lion in their coat of arms. With this, the Netherlands wanted to show that we are brave and strong. But the use of a lion as a symbol is not very creative, other countries like Belgium, Denmark, the United Kingdom and Bulgaria also use this animal.


In addition, the Netherlands was also often portrayed as a lion on old maps. In 1583, the Netherlands was already shown on maps as a lion, presumably because the creator of the map had seen that the arms of many provinces also included a lion. And it's a bit of far-fetched, but you can also see a lion in the shape of the Netherlands on the map.


So you can see that the color orange and the lion are not just made up, there really is a reason behind why we use it.

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