The current flag represents a sweeping change in the evolution of the Portuguese flag, which was always intimately associated with the royal arms. Since the country's foundation, the national flag developed from King Afonso I's blue-cross-on-white armorial square banner to the liberal monarchy's royal arms over a blue-and-white rectangle. In between, major changes associated with important political events contributed to the evolution of the national shield into its current design.
The modern founding of Riga is regarded by historians to have begun with the arrival in Latvia of German traders, mercenaries and religious crusaders in the second half of the 12th century, attracted by a sparsely populated region, potential new markets and by the missionary opportunities to convert the local population to Christianity. German merchants established an outpost for trading with the Balts near the Liv settlement at Riga in 1158. The Augustinian monk Meinhard built a monastery there circa 1190.
Image 6A cartogram depicting the population distribution between old EU-27 member states in 2008 (including the UK and excluding Croatia). 58% of all citizens of the EU live in the four largest member states: Germany, France, Italy, and Spain. (from Demographics of the European Union)
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