The Trident: More than a Symbol

Wednesday July 28, 2021

The Ukrainian Trident (tryzub)

RPCV Alliance for Ukraine member Allen Gonzales-Willert shares his interest in the tryzub


From the time you land at Boryspil Airport in Kyiv to the time you COS, you’ll be hard pressed not to find two things adorned on many a building: the Ukrainian flag and the Ukrainian trident (tryzub)

Where I lived in western Ukraine (Sokal, Lviv Oblast), the tryzub was found everywhere – schools, buildings, cars, t-shirts, coffee mugs, boxes of candy and much more. However, besides being a national symbol that’s used on a plethora of items, what does the trident mean? And what are its roots?

Archeologists have found traces of the trident that date back thousands of years. However, not until the time of the Kyivan Rus, and Prince Volodymyr the Great did the trident get official and widespread usage. This included money, flags and placement on buildings. Today scholars debate the meaning of the trident, with some arguing that it represents a falcon, while others say that it has Christian roots representing the holy trinity.

Whatever someone’s interpretation of the trident is, the trident represents the nation of Ukraine, its wonderful people and culture, and instills a sense of pride in many Ukrainians.

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