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For thousands of years cultures around the world have recognized the eagle as a symbolic representation of the animal kingdom. Languages are replete with terms such as eagle-eyed, cet homme est un aiglei (that man is a star or a genius) or ponte águila (be on guard).

The golden eagle can be found worldwide, and its affects on and uses by humans are profoundly varied and reflect cultural lifestyles, values, and mores. Some examples are listed below.

  • In Mongolia the golden eagle has long been trained for falconry, a practice that continues today and is displayed in its annual Golden Eagle Festival. (Top right image)

  • When the Seljuk Turks occupied Baghdad in 1055 and unified its eastern and western possessions, the double-headed eagle became the emblem for that unification. (Middle right image)

  • In Mexico the Orden del Águila Azteca is an award for services given to Mexico or to humankind and is the highest decoration foreigners can receive. Recipients include Dwight D. Eisenhower and Bill and Melinda Gates. (Bottom right image)

Bald eagles, harpy eagles, and others have had similar impacts on culture. In this section of our Web site, we explore various representations and uses people have found for eagles.