Flag of Great Britain

The flag of Great Britain, commonly known as King's Colours, the Union Jack, or the British flag, was used at sea from 1606 and more generally from 1707 to 1801.[1][2]

The design was ordered by King James VI and I to be used on ships on the high seas, and it subsequently came into use as a national flag following the Treaty of Union and Acts of Union 1707, gaining the status of "the Ensign armorial of Great Britain", the newly created state. It was later adopted by land forces, although the blue of the field used on land-based versions more closely resembled that of the blue of the flag of Scotland.

The flag consists of the red cross of Saint George, patron saint of England, superimposed on the Saltire of Saint Andrew, patron saint of Scotland. Its correct proportions are 3:5.

The flag's official use came to an end in 1801 with the creation of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland. At that time Saint Patrick's Flag was added to the flag of Great Britain to create the present-day Union Flag.

Great Britain
Flag of Great Britain (1707–1800)
NameKing's Colours
UseCivil and state flag
Red Ensign of Great Britain (1707-1800)
Variant flag of Great Britain
UseCivil and naval ensign
DesignA red field with the flag of Great Britain in the canton
Naval Ensign of Great Britain (1707–1800)
Variant flag of Great Britain
UseNaval ensign
DesignA cross of St George with the flag of Great Britain in the canton
Blue Ensign of Great Britain (1707-1800)
Variant flag of Great Britain
UseNaval ensign
DesignA blue field with the flag of Great Britain in the canton
Godspeed replica
A replica of the early 17th century Godspeed flying the flags of Great Britain and the Kingdom of England


By James I of England, King of Scots, Orders in Council, 1606:

By the King: Whereas, some differences hath arisen between Our subjects of South and North Britaine travelling by Seas, about the bearing of their Flagges: For the avoiding of all contentions hereafter. We have, with the advice of our Council, ordered: That from henceforth all our Subjects of this Isle and Kingdome of Great Britaine, and all our members thereof, shall beare in their main-toppe the Red Crosse, commonly called St. George’s Crosse, and the White Crosse, commonly called St. Andrew’s Crosse, joyned together according to the forme made by our heralds, and sent by Us to our Admerall to be published to our Subjects: and in their fore-toppe our Subjects of South Britaine shall weare the Red Crosse onely as they were wont, and our Subjects of North Britaine in their fore-toppe the White Crosse onely as they were accustomed. – 1606[3]

King James had the habit of referring to a "Kingdom of Great Britain", considering that it had been created by the Union of the Crowns. However, despite the personal union which he represented, in practice England and Scotland continued as separate kingdoms, each with its own parliament and laws, for another century. The Kingdom of Great Britain finally came into being in 1707.[4] The flag of the new Kingdom was formally chosen on 17 April 1707, two weeks before the Acts of Union of 1707 were to take effect. Sir Henry St George, Garter Principal King of Arms, had presented several possible designs to Queen Anne and the Privy Council.[5]

Scottish variant

Union Jack 1606 Scotland
"Scots union flag as said to be used by the Scots."

The principal alternative for consideration was a version of the flag with the saltire of Saint Andrew lying on top of that of Saint George, called the "Scots union flag as said to be used by the Scots", but this was rejected.

See also


  1. ^ "British Flags". Flaginstitute.org.
  2. ^ "The Union Jack or The Union Flag?". Flaginstitute.org.
  3. ^ A.C. Fox-Davies, The Art of Heraldry: An Encyclopædia of Armory (1904), p. 399
  4. ^ Michael Lynch, The Oxford Companion to Scottish History (2001), p. 356
  5. ^ Linda Colley, Taking Stock of Taking Liberties: a personal view (British Library, 2009), p. 46
Acts of Union 1800

The Acts of Union 1800 (sometimes referred to as a single Act of Union 1801) were parallel acts of the Parliament of Great Britain and the Parliament of Ireland which united the Kingdom of Great Britain and the Kingdom of Ireland (previously in personal union) to create the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland. The acts came into force on 1 January 1801, and the merged Parliament of the United Kingdom had its first meeting on 22 January 1801.

Both acts remain in force, with amendments, in the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland, and have been repealed in the Republic of Ireland.

Albion F.C.

Albion Football Club is a Uruguayan football club, located in Montevideo. The club, founded in 1891, is the oldest football club in Uruguay and currently plays at Uruguayan Segunda División, the third division of the Uruguayan Football Association league system.

It is considered the oldest football club in Uruguay because other institutions such as Montevideo Rowing Club and Montevideo Cricket Club had been founded before but they were not specifically dedicated to football.In July 2018, Albion became a member of the exclusive Club of Pioneers.

Alexander Slabinsky

Alexander Slabinsky (born 6 March 1986) is a former professional tennis player who played under the flag of Great Britain. Slabinsky's career high ATP singles ranking was No. 266 (October 2008) and highest doubles ranking is No. 276 (May 2010), and has previously been ranked as the British Men's No.4 in 2008 and 2009.

Slabinsky played predominantly on the "Futures" and "Challengers" circuits. His favourite courts were hard and clay courts, but he did just as well on grass as he produced good form at both Wimbledon Championships and Queens ATP. He has a very strong serve, and gets a large amount of aces in matches. His serve is backed up by good ground strokes and he is solid from both sides. His usual doubles partner is Chris Eaton, another Brit. Alex trains at Roehampton NTC as part of the British Team together with Andy Murray, Alex Bogdanovic and James Ward.

Australia Day

Australia Day is the official national day of Australia. Celebrated annually on 26 January, it marks the anniversary of the 1788 arrival of the First Fleet of British ships at Port Jackson, New South Wales, and the raising of the Flag of Great Britain at Sydney Cove by Governor Arthur Phillip. In present-day Australia, celebrations reflect the diverse society and landscape of the nation and are marked by community and family events, reflections on Australian history, official community awards and citizenship ceremonies welcoming new members of the Australian community.The meaning and significance of Australia Day has evolved and been contested over time, and not all states have celebrated the same date as their date of historical significance. Unofficially, or historically, the date has also been variously named "Anniversary Day", "Foundation Day" and "ANA Day". It has also been known as "Invasion Day" and "National Day of Mourning". The date of 26 January 1788 marked the proclamation of British sovereignty over the eastern seaboard of Australia (then known as New Holland). Although it was not known as Australia Day until over a century later, records of celebrations on 26 January date back to 1808, with the first official celebration of the formation of New South Wales held in 1818. On New Year's Day 1901, the British colonies of Australia formed a federation, marking the birth of modern Australia. A national day of unity and celebration was looked for. It was not until 1935 that all Australian states and territories adopted use of the term "Australia Day" to mark the date, and not until 1994 that the date was consistently marked by a public holiday on that day by all states and territories.In contemporary Australia, the holiday is marked by the presentation of the Australian of the Year Awards on Australia Day Eve, announcement of the Australia Day Honours list and addresses from the Governor-General and the Prime Minister. It is an official public holiday in every state and territory. With community festivals, concerts and citizenship ceremonies, the day is celebrated in large and small communities and cities around the nation. Australia Day has become the biggest annual civic event in Australia.Some Indigenous Australian events are now included. However, since at least 1938, the date of Australia Day has also been marked by Indigenous Australians, and those sympathetic to their cause, mourning what they see as the invasion of their land by Europeans and protesting its celebration as a national holiday. These groups sometimes refer to 26 January as Invasion Day, Survival Day, or Day of Mourning and advocate that the date should be changed, or that the holiday should be abolished entirely.

British West Florida

West Florida was a colony of the Kingdom of Great Britain from 1763 until 1783 when it was ceded to Spain as part of the Peace of Paris.

British West Florida comprised parts of the modern U.S. states of Louisiana, Mississippi, Alabama and Florida. Effective British control ended in 1781 when Spain captured Pensacola. The territory subsequently became a colony of Spain, parts of which were gradually annexed piecemeal by the United States beginning in 1810.

Flag of Massachusetts

The flag of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts is the flag of Massachusetts. It has been represented by official but limited-purpose flags since 1776, though until 1908 it had no state flag per se to represent its government. A variant of the white flag with blue seal was carried by each of the Massachusetts volunteer regiments during the Civil War alongside the National Colors. An exception were the two "Irish regiments" (the 9th and 28th Volunteers), each of which was permitted to carry an alternative green flag with a harp symbol. The state currently has three official flags: a state flag, a "naval and maritime flag" (despite it no longer having its own navy), and a governor's flag. With Florida and Minnesota, it is one of only three state flags to prominently feature a Native American in its heraldry.

Flag of New South Wales

The current state flag of New South Wales was officially adopted by the government of New South Wales in 1876.

The flag is based on the defaced British Blue Ensign with the state badge located in the fly. The badge, based on the coat of arms, is a white disc with the cross of St George, a golden lion passant guardant in the centre of the cross and an eight-pointed gold star on each arm of the cross.

This flag was adopted due to criticisms from the British Admiralty that the previous design was too similar to the design of the Victorian flag.

The state badge was designed by the Colonial Architect James Barnet and Captain Francis Hixson, a retired Royal Navy officer. Even though no meaning for the design was given, it is perhaps a simplified version of what was the semi-official arms of New South Wales at the time.

Flag of Somerset County, Maryland

The Flag of Somerset County, Maryland, United States, consists of a flag of Great Britain with the head of a Native American in the center. The flag was adopted in 1694 after the county received a Royal Warrant from King William III of England to use the Union Jack as its flag. That flag was later adopted by the Kingdom of Great Britain in 1707.

Flag of Taunton, Massachusetts

The flag of Taunton, Massachusetts, also known as the Taunton Flag and the Liberty and Union Flag, is the city flag of Taunton, Massachusetts, United States. The flag was first adopted in 1774 and has since been adopted as the flag of Taunton. It consists of a red ensign with the flag of Great Britain in canton with the words "Liberty and Union" on it.

Flag of the East India Company

The flag of the East India Company represented the British East India Company between 1600 and 1874. The flag was altered as the nation changed from England to Great Britain to the United Kingdom. It was initially a red and white striped ensign with the flag of England in canton. The flag was later updated to include the flag of Great Britain and flag of the United Kingdom in 1707 and 1801 respectively, as the nation developed. It was succeeded by the Star of India series of flags.

Flag of the United Kingdom

The national flag of the United Kingdom is the Union Jack, also known as the Union Flag.The current design of the Union Jack dates from the union of Ireland and Great Britain in 1801. It consists of the red cross of Saint George (patron saint of England), edged in white, superimposed on the Cross of St Patrick (patron saint of Ireland), which are superimposed on the Saltire of Saint Andrew (patron saint of Scotland). Wales is not represented in the Union Flag by Wales's patron saint, Saint David, as at the time the flag was designed Wales was part of the Kingdom of England.

The flag's standard height-to-length proportions are 1:2. The war flag variant used by the British Army modifies the proportions to 3:5 and crops two of the red diagonals.

The earlier flag of Great Britain was established in 1606 by a proclamation of King James VI and I of Scotland and England. The new flag of the United Kingdom was officially created by an Order in Council of 1801, reading as follows:

The Union Flag shall be azure, the Crosses saltire of Saint Andrew and Saint Patrick quarterly per saltire, counter-changed, argent and gules, the latter fimbriated of the second, surmounted by the Cross of Saint George of the third fimbriated as the saltire.

Great Britain at the 2011 World Aquatics Championships

The Great Britain team will compete at the 2011 World Aquatics Championships in Shanghai, China. Britain has selected a team of 40, 20 of each gender, for the FINA World Championships in Shanghai next month.

Great Britain at the 2013 World Aquatics Championships

Great Britain competed at the 2013 World Aquatics Championships in Barcelona, Spain from 19 July to 4 August 2013.

Great Britain at the 2017 World Aquatics Championships

Great Britain is scheduled to compete at the 2017 World Aquatics Championships in Budapest,

Hungary from 14 July to 30 July.

Green Ensign

The Green Ensign (Irish: An Meirge Uaine) is a historical flag flown by some Irish merchant vessels from the 17th century to the early 20th century. The flag consists of a green field with a golden harp and a canton containing either the English Flag (St George's Cross) or a version of the Union Jack.

This flag has appeared in these historical flag plates:

1685 Downham's Flag Chart

1700 Len's Flag Chart

1772 French Encyclopédie

1783 Bowles's Universal Display of the Naval Flags of all Nations

1799 Flags of all Nations

1848 Flaggen Aller Seefahrenden Nationen

1868 Johnson's new chart of national emblems

1889 Drawings of Flags of All Nations - British Admiralty

1917 National Geographic Flag BookThere remains a lively debate concerning whether the flag had any form of local official status within the British Isles or was simply an informal flag used by some merchant ships.

List of flags of Malta

The following is a list of flags of Malta.

National flag

A national flag is a flag that represents and symbolizes a country. The national flag is flown by the government of a country, but can usually also be flown by citizens of the country. A national flag is designed with specific meanings for its colours and symbols. The colours of the national flag may be worn by the people of a nation to show their patriotism, or related paraphernalia that show the symbols or colours of the flag may be used for those purposes.

The design of a national flag may be altered after the occurrence of important historical events. The burning or destruction of a national flag is a greatly symbolic act.

Union Jack

The Union Jack, or Union Flag, is the national flag of the United Kingdom. The flag also has official status in Canada, by parliamentary resolution, where it is known as the Royal Union Flag. Additionally, it is used as an official flag in some of the smaller British overseas territories. The Union Flag also appears in the canton (upper flagstaff-side quarter) of the flags of several nations and territories that are former British possessions or dominions, as well as the state flag of Hawaii.

The claim that the term Union Jack properly refers only to naval usage has been disputed, following historical investigations by the Flag Institute in 2013.The origins of the earlier flag of Great Britain date back to 1606. James VI of Scotland had inherited the English and Irish thrones in 1603 as James I, thereby uniting the crowns of England, Scotland, and Ireland in a personal union, although the three kingdoms remained separate states. On 12 April 1606, a new flag to represent this regal union between England and Scotland was specified in a royal decree, according to which the flag of England (a red cross on a white background, known as St George's Cross), and the flag of Scotland (a white saltire on a blue background, known as the Saltire or St Andrew's Cross), would be joined together, forming the flag of England and Scotland for maritime purposes. King James also began to refer to a "Kingdom of Great Britaine", although the union remained a personal one.

The present design of the Union Flag dates from a Royal proclamation following the union of Great Britain and Ireland in 1801. The flag combines aspects of three older national flags: the red cross of St George for the Kingdom of England, the white saltire of St Andrew for Scotland (which two were united in the first Union Flag), and the red saltire of St Patrick to represent Ireland.

Notably, the home country of Wales is not represented separately in the Union Flag, as the flag was designed after the invasion of Wales in 1282. Hence Wales as a home country today has no representation on the flag; it appears under the cross of St George, which represents the former Kingdom of England (which included Wales).


Vexillography is the art and practice of designing flags; it is allied with vexillology, the scholarly study of flags, but is not synonymous with that discipline. A person who designs flags is a vexillographer.

Royal houses

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