Polish Eagle

Artwork
Identifier:
1999.009.1
Artist:
Artist Unknown
Credit:
GVSU Collection
Date:
circa 1990
Description:
Circular Polish seal; red background behind white eagle/raptor. Gold border.
Historical Context:
The White Eagle is the national coat of arms of Poland. It is a red shield decorated with a stylized white eagle with golden beak and talons, wearing a golden crown. The white eagle emblem originates from the foundation myth of Poland, where legendary founder Lech was said to have seen a white eagle's nest while searching for a place to settle. As lore tells it, upon seeing the bird, a ray of sunshine from the red, setting sun fell upon its wings, giving the appearance that they had been tipped with gold, while the rest of the eagle remained pure white. This is where he was said to have settled, and also placed the eagle's emblem upon his shield.