Every nation has symbols that represent identity and national unity. These are the Flag, Coat of Arms and Anthem.
Today, March 10th, is a very important day for Ukraine – the Day of the National Anthem of Ukraine ” The glory and freedom of Ukraine has not yet perished.” This date was approved in 2021 on December 7th by the Cabinet of Ministers of Ukraine.
The story of the National Anthem creation dates back to the fall of 1862. Pavlo Platonovych Chubynskyi – Ukrainian ethnographer, folklorist, poet, native of Boryspil, 23-year-old graduate of the Faculty of Law, in September 1862 in his Kyiv apartment wrote the poem “Ukraine is not dead yet”, which in the future was destined to become the national and later the State Anthem of Ukraine people.
On March 10th, 1865, in the Polish city of Przemyśl, the work of the composer Mykhailo Verbytskyi, a well-known Galician composer of that time, one of the founders of the Ukrainian school of composers, a priest, to the words of the poet Pavlo Chubynskyi “Ukraine is not dead yet” was performed for the first time. It ended the concert dedicated to the memory of Taras Shevchenko. In the same year, the poem was already published with sheet music. The piece, performed by the Ukrainian opera singer-tenor Modest Mentsynskyi, was recorded on a record in the Cologne branch of “Gramophone” in October 1910.
On March 6th, 2003, the Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine adopted the Law “On the National Anthem of Ukraine”, proposed by the President Leonid Kuchma. The draft law proposed to approve as the State Anthem – the National Anthem to the music of Mykhailo Verbytskyi with the words of only the first verse and chorus of the song “Ukraine is not dead yet” by Pavel Chubynskyi. At the same time, the first stanza of the National Anthem, according to the president’s proposal, will be “The glory and freedom of Ukraine has not yet perished.” This law was supported by 334 deputies.
With the adoption of this law, Article 20 of the Constitution of Ukraine took on a complete form. The National Anthem to the music of M. Verbytskyi received words approved by law from now on.
Nowadays, the National Anthem of Ukraine is sung while hiding in bomb shelters, during shelling, on the front lines. It is a symbol of the indomitability of the Ukrainian people. Today, the National Anthem of Ukraine is recognized and respected all over the world.
This is exactly what the soul of the Ukrainian people who are fighting for their independence, will and future sounds like. This is exactly what the unity and indomitability of the Ukrainian nation sounds like, and it is also the spiritual link that unites us with previous generations of freedom fighters.
The patriotic song, written more than 150 years ago, became one of the embodiments of the eternal desire of Ukrainians for freedom, united all the fighters for independence through the ages and became a true symbol of today’s Ukraine.
Words by Ivan Berezkin
Eastern Europe Territory