The Pledge of Allegiance of the United States is an expression of loyalty to the federal flag and the republic of the United States of America, originally composed by Francis Bellamy in 1892 and formally adopted by Congress as the pledge in 1942. The Pledge has been modified four times since its composition.
Congressional sessions open with the recital of the Pledge, as do many government meetings at local levels, and meetings held by many private organizations. It is also commonly recited in school at the beginning of every school day, although the Supreme Court has ruled on several occasions that students cannot be compelled to recite the Pledge, or punished for not doing so.
According to the United States Flag Code, the Pledge of Allegiance reads:
- I pledge allegiance to the Flag of the United States of America, and to the Republic for which it stands, one Nation under God, indivisible, with liberty and justice for all.
According to the Flag Code, the Pledge "should be rendered by standing at attention facing the flag with the right hand over the heart. Members of the Armed Forces and veterans who are present and not in uniform may render the military salute. Persons in uniform should remain silent, face the flag, and render the military salute."
Famous quotes containing the words pledge of, pledge and/or allegiance:
“For, truly speaking, whoever provokes me to a good act or thought has given me a pledge of his fidelity to virtue,he has come under the bonds to adhere to that cause to which we are jointly attached.”
—Ralph Waldo Emerson (18031882)
“I pledge youI pledge myself to a new deal for the American people.”
—Franklin D. Roosevelt (18821945)
“Mine honesty and I begin to square.
The loyalty well held to fools does make
Our faith mere folly; yet he that can endure
To follow with allegiance a falln lord
Does conquer him that did his master conquer
And earns a place i the story.”
—William Shakespeare (15641616)