The Mysterious British Passport Unicorn: Exploring the Intriguing Legend

If you’ve heard anything about the British passport over the past few years, you might have come across the term “British passport unicorn.” Mysteriously unique, the term has piqued the curiosity of many people. And the question on everyone’s mind is – what on earth are they talking about?

In this article, we’ll explore the enchanting legend that surrounds the British passport unicorn, and we’ll uncover the truth behind this captivating tale.

Key Takeaways

  • The British passport unicorn is a unique feature of the new UK passport design that has captured people’s imaginations.
  • The unicorn is a symbol of strength, power, and independence, which makes it a perfect match for the strength and power of the British passport.
  • The unicorn’s iconic status in British culture dates back to the 12th century and is steeped in mythology and folklore.

The Story of the British Passport Unicorn

The introduction of the burgundy-colored European Union passport in 1988 heralded the demise of the classic blue UK passport. But after the Brexit vote in June 2016, the UK government began a lengthy process of deciding on a new design for the passport that would replace the EU version.

However, the new design was not without controversy. The United Kingdom government announced that they would be bringing back the traditional blue passport to replace the burgundy-covered passport used by citizens of Britain and Northern Ireland. This news was received with mixed feelings, but there was one detail of the design that captured the media’s imagination – a unicorn.

See also  Navigating the Australian Immigration System: Understanding the Difference Between 189 and 190 Visas

The new British passport design was revealed in 2017, and as expected, the passport had returned to its old, dark blue color – a symbol of Britain’s independent and sovereign status. But what made the new design so unique was the inclusion of a page featuring a golden embossed unicorn, gazing out into the distance, imposing and strong, with one foot on a globe.

The unicorn on the cover page of the new passport is a reference to Queen Elizabeth I’s era, where unicorns and lions were prominent symbols of power and strength. In 2018, when the UK government revealed the new passport design, Home Secretary Amber Rudd praised it as “a true reflection of our national identity.”

The Significance of the Unicorn

The legend of the unicorn has mythical origins that go back centuries. The image of a graceful, one-horned creature has been a symbol of royalty, purity, and grace since ancient times. The concept of the unicorn has appeared in Greek literature, ancient Persian art, and medieval European tapestries. It was believed that the horn of the unicorn had magical powers, and the creature’s blood was thought to have healing properties.

In medieval times, the unicorn was a symbol of chivalry and purity. Kings and queens often associated themselves with the mythic creature due to its purity, beauty, and strength. In the 12th century, the unicorn became a heraldic symbol for Scotland as well, believed to have been chosen by William the First as a representation of his strength, courage, and purity.

Why a Unicorn on the British Passport?

The inclusion of a unicorn, a legendary creature that has no country of origin, was chosen for several profound reasons. The unicorn fits perfectly with the idea of a British passport – strong, powerful, and independent. With the UK no longer bound by the EU passport design, the unicorn was a reflection of the country’s resurgence and reclamation of its distinguished heritage.

See also  The Ultimate Guide to Visa 18 in Kuwait

The UK government intended to show the world that the country was ready to break free from the constraints of the past and stride on towards a bright and prosperous future. The unicorn was a symbol of the rebirth of Britain, a confirmation of its unique status and its desire to lead the world into a new era.


In conclusion, the British passport unicorn is a unique and captivating creature in its right. The inclusion of the unicorn on the British passport is perfect as it embodies the characteristics of the country’s demographic.

The UK Government not only wanted to revive a traditional element of British passport design, but it also wanted to reflect and emphasize the country’s strength and independence, both of which are epitomized in the legend of the unicorn.

So next time you travel to the United Kingdom, pause to admire the captivating unicorn on the cover of your passport, which symbolizes much of what it means to be a citizen of the country.


What is the origin of the unicorn symbol?

The image of the unicorn has been a symbol of royalty, purity, and grace since ancient times. The concept of the unicorn has appeared in Greek literature, ancient Persian art, and medieval European tapestries.

When was the new British passport design revealed?

The design for the new British passport was revealed in 2017, featuring a page with a golden embossed unicorn.

Why is a unicorn on the British passport?

The unicorn embodies the idea of a strong, powerful, and independent country, reflecting the UK’s resurgence and reclamation of its distinguished heritage.

See also  The Ultimate Guide to Obtaining and Using a Sweden Passport

About the Author

Latasha W. Bolt

Latasha is a travel writer based in Atlanta, Georgia. She has a degree in journalism and has been traveling the world since she was a teenager. Latasha is experienced in navigating the visa and passport application process and shares her knowledge and experiences on the blog. Her articles are personal and engaging, providing readers with a unique perspective on the joys and challenges of international travel.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *