National Anthems from Around the World

In 1795, the song named La Marseillaise was adopted as the national anthem of which country?

And the answer is: France.

Written in 1792, "La Marseillaise" is the national anthem of France. Though it might not seem it, this iconic anthem was composed in just one night, smack dab in the middle of the historic French Revolution. It was written after the declaration of war by France against Austria, and was originally titled "War Song for the Army of the Rhine." The song is the first example of the "European march" style of anthems.

Like many other national anthems, “La Marseillaise” calls the country to action, inspiring patriotic fervor in its citizens and celebrating the pursuit of liberty. Though anthems across the globe tend to embrace similar emphases on freedom and patriotic sentiment, there is wide variation on what a country’s anthem stands to celebrate. While the United States’ “Star Spangled Banner” and France’s “La Marseillaise” honor an influential battle, others pay homage to a beloved leader. Though the UK’s “God Save the Queen” isn’t quite an official national anthem, it’s considered a royal anthem and pays respect to their adored monarch. Below footage from the 1953 coronation of Queen Elizabeth II displays the anthem's pomp and circumstance.

Anthems even find their place in popular culture. Casablanca is one of many to incorporate a national anthem into a narrative dealing with political instability and conflict. In this iconic scene, "La Marseillaise" is heard loud and proud against a group of Nazis singing the German national anthem. The French anthem soon overtakes the bar and finishes in a triumphant "Vive La France!"

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