Flags of Europe


This is a list of international, national and subnational flags used in Europe.

A map of Europe with national flags, excluding dependent territories and partially recognised states

Supranational and international flags


An incomplete list of flags representing intra-European international and supranational organisations, which omits intercontinental organisations such as the North Atlantic Treaty Organisation and the United Nations:

FlagDateUseDescription
1957/1958 Flag of the BeneluxCombines features from the flags of the member countries: Belgium, the Netherlands and Luxembourg
2015 Flag of the Central Commission for Navigation on the Rhine
1990s Flag of the Central European Free Trade Agreement (CEFTA)
1991 Flag of the Commonwealth of Independent StatesThe flag of the Commonwealth of Independent States is blue with the emblem of the organisation in the centre.
1955 Flag of the Council of EuropeA circle of 12 upward-oriented 5-pointed golden stars centred on a blue field: represents the continent beyond the organisations as the Flag of Europe
1986[note 1] Flag of the European Union[note 2]
1984 Flag of the Nordic CouncilWhite stylised swan in a white circle upon a blue background.
1986 Flag of the Sami people
2006 Flag of the European Gendarmerie Force
2006 Flag of the European Maritime Force

Flags of European sovereign states


FlagDateUseDescription
1912 Flag of AlbaniaThe flag of Albania, adopted in April 1912, is a red flag with a black two-headed eagle in the centre. It is derived from the seal of Gjergj Kastriot Skanderbeg, a 15th-century Albanian who led a revolt against the Ottoman Empire that resulted in brief independence for Albania from 1443 to 1478.
1866 Flag of AndorraThe flag of Andorra, adopted in 1866, is a tricolour of blue, yellow, and red with the coat of arms of Andorra in the centre. It is based on the flags of France and Spain. The coat of arms of Andorra is based on the Catalan flag (4 red ribbons with yellow background).
1918  1920
1991 
Flag of Armenia[note 3]After gaining independence, the First Republic of Armenia adopted the modern Armenian tricolor. The independent Armenian government selected the colours used during the last period of the Rubenid Dynasty: red, blue and yellow. The Red emblematizes the Armenian Highland, the Armenian people's continued struggle for survival, maintenance of the Christian faith, Armenia's independence and freedom. The Blue emblematizes the will of the people of Armenia to live beneath peaceful skies. The Orange emblematizes the creative talent and hard-working nature of the people of Armenia.
1918  1938
1945 
Flag of AustriaOriginally adopted in 1918, it was again officially adopted in 1945, after being banned during World War II.

Stripes of red and white have been a collective emblem of Austria for over 800 years, and they were first used on the flag in 1191. According to long-established legend, the red and white flag was designed to resemble the bloodstained white coat worn by the Duke of Austria during a fierce battle.

1918  1920
1991 
Flag of Azerbaijan[note 3]Originally adopted in 1918 as a flag of the Democratic Republic of Azerbaijan, it was officially adopted again in 1991, after Azerbaijan gained its independence.

The flag of Azerbaijan is the national ensign of Azerbaijan. It consists of three equal horizontal bands colored blue, red, and green, with a white crescent and an eight-pointed star centered in the red band. The blue band refers to Turkic heritage, the red is for progress and Europeanisation and the green refers to Islam.

1995 Flag of BelarusBelarus's flag was officially adopted on May 16, 1995. The dominant red and green were colours used on its flag when it was a republic of the former Soviet Union. The woven fabric ornament on the left uses traditional Belarusian red and white colours.
1831 Flag of BelgiumThe flag was officially adopted on January 23, 1831.

Black, gold and red are symbolic of the country's coat of arms. The three-striped vertical layout was inspired by the French Tricolour. Black and gold were chosen, being the colours of the Duchy of Brabant where the Belgian Revolution started. Red was added as a symbol of the blood spilled during the uprising.

1998 Flag of Bosnia and HerzegovinaThe flag of Bosnia and Herzegovina consists of a wide medium blue vertical band on the fly side with a yellow isosceles triangle abutting the band and the top of the flag. The remainder of the flag is medium blue with seven five-pointed white stars and two half stars top and bottom along the hypotenuse of the triangle. The three points of the triangle stand for the three nations of Bosnia: Bosniaks, Croats, and Serbs. It is said to represent the map of Bosnia.
1878  1946
1991 
Flag of BulgariaThe flag of Bulgaria was adopted in 1989 and consists of three horizontal bands of white, green and red.
1990 Flag of CroatiaThe flag of Croatia, adopted in December 1990, consists of three equal horizontal stripes of red, white and blue, which has been the Croatian flag since 1848. In the middle is the coat of arms of Croatia.
1960 Flag of Cyprus[note 4]The flag was officially adopted on August 16, 1960.

The island is depicted in a copper shade representative of its name: the name Cyprus has roots in the Sumerian word for copper (zubar), from the large deposits of copper found on the island. The crossed green olive branches symbolise the hope for peace between the Turks and the Greeks. It was designed by İsmet Güney, a Turkish Cypriot painter.

1993 Flag of the Czech RepublicThe first flag of Czechoslovakia was white over red, and those colours are the heraldic colours of Bohemia. The blue triangle was added to the flag to distinguish it from the flag of Poland, and blue is said to represent the State of Moravia.
1219 Flag of DenmarkIt is the world's oldest state flag still in use. Legend has it that it appeared as a sign from heaven to King Valdemar II in 1219.

Known as the Dannebrog ("Danish Cloth"), this blood-red flag with an off-centred white cross (a "Scandinavian Cross") became a model for other regional flags.

1918  1940
1990 
Flag of EstoniaIt was officially re-adopted on May 8, 1990. The story of the flag begins on 17 September 1881, when the constituent Assembly of the first Estonian national student Corps "Vironia" (modern Estonian Students Society) in the city of Tartu was also identified in color; it later became national. The first flag was made in 1884 and this tricolour was accepted in 1918 as the national flag of Estonia. The original flag is still in existence. The first flag of Estonia is kept in Tartu Estonian National Museum.

Blue represents loyalty, and the country's beautiful blue skies, seas and lakes; black is symbolic of past oppression and the fertile soil; and white represents virtue, winter snows, and Estonia's long struggle for freedom and independence.

1918 Flag of FinlandIt was officially adopted on May 29, 1918.

The off-centred blue cross is based on the Nordic Cross, widely used on Nordic national flags. The blue colour is symbolic of blue skies, and the thousands of lakes in Finland. The white represents the winter snows.

1794  1814
1830 
Flag of FranceIt was officially adopted on February 15, 1794.

The tricolore consists of three vertical bands of equal width, displaying the country's national colours: blue, white, and red. The blue band is positioned nearest the flagstaff, the white in the middle, and the red on the outside. Red, white and blue have come to represent liberty, equality and fraternity—the ideals of the French Revolution. Blue and red are also the time-honoured colours of Paris, while white is the colour of the Royal House of Bourbon.

2004 Flag of Georgia[note 3]This recently adopted flag is a simple white rectangle, with a central red cross connecting all four sides of the flag; in each of the four corners is a small red cross. The flag is based on a historic five-cross design that dates back to the 14th century.
1919  1933
1949 
Flag of GermanyIt was officially re-adopted on May 23, 1949 and subsequently used by West Germany while the country was divided into East and West before reunification in 1990.

The tricolour flag was designed in 1832, and the black, red, and gold colours were taken from the uniforms of German soldiers during the Napoleonic Wars (Out of the blackness (black) of servitude through bloody (red) battles to the golden (gold) light of freedom.[1]) or taken from the coat of arms of Holy Roman Empire.

1978 
(Civil flag since 1822)
Flag of GreeceThe current flag of Greece was adopted as a civil flag and ensign in 1822, and as the national flag in 1978.

It features a white cross and a combination of nine (five blue and four white) horizontal stripes. The shade of blue has varied over the years, and darker blue (shown) is now commonly used. The alternating white and blue stripes are said to represent the nine syllables of the phrase "Eleftheria i thanatos" ("Freedom or Death"), a popular motto during the Greek War of Independence. During the Kingdom of Greece, a crown was added in the centre of the cross.

Greece's national flag between 1822 and 1970 featured a simple white cross on a blue background. It is not known why this version was adopted, and not a blue cross on a white background as was popular in the War of Independence. During the dictatorship, a navy blue version of the current flag with proportions of 7:12 was used.

1957 Flag of HungaryThe flag of Hungary was officially adopted in 1848.

The tricolour design is modelled after that of the flag of France[citation needed]. The colors are derived from the historical Hungarian coat of arms. Red is said to symbolise strength, white faithfulness, and green hope.

1915 Flag of IcelandThe flag of Iceland was adopted in June 1915 to represent Iceland. In June 1944 it became the flag of the independent republic of Iceland. Like other Scandinavian flags, it is based on the Scandinavian Cross. It is a reverse colour image of the Flag of Norway. The blue represents the sea, the white represents the snow and glaciers and the red symbolises volcanic lava.
1922 Flag of IrelandAlthough dating from the 19th century, the tricolour flag of Ireland was not popularised until its use by rebels during the 1916 Easter Rising. It was officially adopted by the revolutionary First Dáil (assembly) of the Irish Republic on January 21, 1919 and used thereafter by the Irish Free State. The current 1937 Constitution of Ireland defines it as the national flag.

Modeled after the French tricolour, the colours of the Irish tricolour symbolise two communities. Green represents the Roman Catholic nationalist tradition. Orange represents the Protestant unionist community. White symbolises peace between both.

1948 Flag of ItalyDerived from an original design by Napoleon, it consists of three vertical bands of equal width, displaying the national colours of Italy: green, white, and red. Green stands for hope, white for loyalty and red represents the blood spread to unify the country.
1992 Flag of Kazakhstan[note 5]
1918  1940
1990 
Flag of LatviaThe flag of Latvia was officially re-adopted on February 27, 1990.

The design is adopted from a 13th-century chronicle where "red divided by white" is said to be a Latvian flag. To distinguish it from the Austrian flag, the proportions 2:1:2 and the "Latvian red" color have been adopted.

1937 Flag of LiechtensteinThe flag of Liechtenstein consists of two horizontal bands of blue and red with a gold crown in the canton. The crown was added to the flag in 1937 after the country found out at the 1936 Summer Olympics that their flag was identical to the civil flag of Haiti.
1918  1940
1989 
Flag of LithuaniaThe flag of Lithuania was officially re-adopted on March 20, 1989, before Lithuania gained independence from the Soviet Union in 1990.

Yellow is symbolic of the country's wheat fields, green symbolic of the forests, and red symbolises patriotism. Collectively the colours represent hope for the future, freedom from oppression, and the courage of the Lithuanian people.

1845 Flag of LuxembourgThe flag of Luxembourg was officially adopted in 1972, although it had been used since 1848 following Luxembourg's independence from the Netherlands in the late 19th century.[dates disagree]

The flag uses a combination of red, white, and blue that dates to the 13th century, and the Grand Duke's coat of arms.

1964 Flag of MaltaThe flag of Malta was officially adopted on September 21, 1964.

The flag uses the traditional red and white colours which pre-date those of the Knights of Malta and which Government emulate[clarification needed] the arms of the former Universitas of Mdina. The George Cross (upper left), outlined in red, was added to the flag in the 1940s, as King George VI of the United Kingdom presented it to islanders for outstanding gallantry during World War II.

1990 Flag of MoldovaMoldova's flag was officially adopted on May 12, 1990. Once part of Romania, Moldova's flag reflects that association, as the two countries use almost identical shades of red, yellow and blue in their national flags. The centred Moldova shield's main feature is a golden eagle holding an Orthodox Christian Cross in its beak. The olive branch is said to symbolise peace.
1881 Flag of MonacoThe flag of Monaco has two horizontal bands of red and white—these have been the heraldic colours of the House of Grimaldi since at least 1339.
2007 Flag of MontenegroThe flag of Montenegro, adopted in July 2004, is a red banner bearing the coat of arms adopted in 1993. The coat of arms derives from those of King Nikola.
1575 (first used)

1937 (officially adopted) 

Flag of the NetherlandsThe flag of the Netherlands was officially adopted on February 19, 1937.

At one time this tricolour flag was orange, white, and blue, as those were the livery colours of William of Orange, a Dutch prince. In the 17th century, red replaced the orange as a flag colour, because the orange dye used on the flag was unstable, and turned red after exposure to the sun. It is the oldest tricolour flag still in national use[2] and has influenced both the French[3] (1794) and Russian flag[4] (1693); both of these flags have in turn influenced many other European and African flags.

1995 Flag of North MacedoniaThe flag of North Macedonia depicts a rising yellow sun with eight rays extending to the edges of the red field. It represents "the new sun of liberty", evoked in the Macedonian national anthem Denes nad Makedonija (Today Over Macedonia).
1821  1844
1898 
Flag of NorwayThe flag of Norway is red with a blue Scandinavian cross outlined in white; the vertical part of the cross is shifted to the hoist side in the style of the Dannebrog, the flag of Denmark. It was adopted in 1821, but a union mark was added in the canton from 1844 to 1898.
1919 Flag of PolandThe flag of Poland was officially adopted on August 1, 1919.

The colours red and white have long been associated with Poland and its coat of arms, at least since 3 May 1791.

1911 Flag of PortugalThe flag of Portugal was officially adopted on June 30, 1911.

The design is a rectangular bi-colour (2:3 ratio) with a field vertically divided into two stripes of different widths—a green stripe on the hoist, and a larger red stripe on the fly. A small version of the national coat of arms (armillary sphere and Portuguese shield) is superimposed over the boundary between the colours at equal distance from the upper and lower edges. The field colours, especially the green, originally represented a radical republican-inspired change that broke the bond with the former religious monarchical flag. In the ensuing decades, these colours were popularly propagandised as representing the hope of the nation (green) and the blood (red) of those who died defending it, as a means to endow them with a more patriotic and dignified, therefore less political, sentiment.

1848, 1867  1948
1989 
Flag of RomaniaThe flag of Romania was officially re-adopted in 1989. The first red-yellow-blue flag dates from 1834 but the colours themselves are thought to have had special significance from earlier times. The current layout dates since 1848.

A vertical tricolour of bands of blue, yellow, and red of equal width and overall proportions of 2:3 (height-width).

1883  1918
1993 
Flag of RussiaThe Russian Federation flag was officially adopted on August 22, 1991. The flag was hoisted shortly after the former Soviet Union collapsed. The white, blue and red are Pan-Slavic colours.
2011 Flag of San MarinoThe flag of San Marino comprises equal horizontal bands of white and light blue with the national coat of arms superimposed in the centre.
1882  1918
2004 
(Civil flag since 1835)
Flag of SerbiaThe flag of Serbia consists of three horizontal bands of red, blue and white, with the coat-of-arms located left of centre. By accident or design the colours are that of the Russian flag reversed. A flag with three horizontal bands of red, blue and white has been used as the national flag of Serbia and Serbs since 1835. Red, blue, and white are considered Pan-Slavic colours, but red and blue also occur on flags attributed to a 13th-century king of Serbia. The superimposed coat of arms of Serbia is a double-headed white eagle and a red shield with a white cross surrounded by 4 firesteels (ocila), a symbol that draws roots from Byzantine coat of arms (where the cross is surrounded by four Greek letters Beta[clarification needed]) and from the ancient past of the Balkan peninsula, as it can be seen on 7000 years old Vinča culture pottery and many other later traditional Balkan cultural remains.[5]
1992 Flag of SlovakiaThe flag of Slovakia was officially adopted on September 1, 1992.

Red, white, and blue are traditional Pan-Slavic colours. The superimposed Slovakian arms feature a dominant white cross atop a blue symbolic reference to the European country's mountains.

1991 Flag of SloveniaThe flag of Slovenia was officially adopted on June 24, 1991.

Red, white, and blue are taken from the Carniolan coat of arms. The flag without the coat of arms was in use from 1848 to 1945. The Slovenian coat of arms features three gold stars, symbolizing the Counts of Celje. The mountains shown in white are representative of the Alps, and Mount Triglav, Slovenia's national symbol, in particular; the wavy blue lines across the bottom indicate Slovenia's access to the sea.

(1785 original design)

1981 

Flag of SpainThe flag of Spain was officially adopted on 19 July 1927 as the merchant naval flag, and on 29 December 1978 as the national flag under the current Spanish Constitution. However the first original reference dates back to 15 May 1785, when Charles III of Spain adopted one of the designs proposed by Antonio Valdés y Bazán, commissioned by the king himself, in order to easily differentiate his ships from those of other European nations, many of which used the royal coat of arms over a white background, i.e. the French Bourbon royal flag. The red and golden-yellow colours were used from that day with mere changes[clarification needed] on the coat of arms (with the exception of the Spanish Second Republic) and are the original colours found within the coat of arms of the medieval kingdoms of Castile, Aragon and Navarre, first united by King Ferdinand II of Aragon and Queen Isabella I of Castile.
1569 Flag of SwedenThe flag of Sweden was officially adopted on June 22, 1906.

The off-centre yellow cross (the Scandinavian Cross) is taken from the Danish flag. The yellow and blue colours are taken from the national coat of arms.

1889 Flag of SwitzerlandThe flag of Switzerland consists of a red square with a bold, equilateral white Greek cross in the centre. It is one of only two square flags, the other being that of the Vatican City. It is based on the flag of the Canton of Schwyz, which dates back to 1474 at least.
1844 Flag of Turkey[note 6]The flag of Turkey is a red flag with a white crescent moon and a star in its centre. The flag is called Ay Yıldız (literally, moon star) or Albayrak (Red flag). It was adopted in 1844 with the Tanzimat reforms; though the shape, placement and shade of the colour[clarification needed] vary. The geometric proportions of the flag were legally standardised with the Turkish Flag Law in 1936.
1918  1920
1992 
Flag of UkraineUkraine's flag was adopted on September 4, 1991, shortly after the collapse of the former Soviet Union. This is the country's original flag used by the short-lived Ukrainian People's Republic, but it was banned for many decades under the Soviet regime. The shade of blue is said to be symbolic of the sky, while the yellow represents Ukraine's golden wheat fields.
1801 Flag of the United KingdomThe current flag of the United Kingdom dates from the Act of Union 1800, which merged the Kingdom of Great Britain and the Kingdom of Ireland to form the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland.

The 'Union Jack' merges the red cross of Saint George (patron saint of England), edged in white, superimposed on the diagonal red cross of Saint Patrick (patron saint of Ireland), which are superimposed on the saltire of Saint Andrew (patron saint of Scotland). The flag of Wales, the other country of the United Kingdom, is not graphically represented.

1929 Flag of Vatican City or Holy SeeThe flag of Vatican City, adopted in June 1929, consists of two vertical bands of yellow and white with the crossed keys of Saint Peter and the Papal Tiara centred in the white band. It is one of only two square country flags in the world, the other being that of Switzerland.

Flags of other European sovereign entities


FlagDateUseDescription
1130 Sovereign Military Order of MaltaThe flag of the Sovereign Military Order of Malta is a red rectangular flag quartered by a white cross.

Disputed or partially recognised states


FlagDateUseState (status)Description
1992 Flag of Abkhazia[note 3]GeorgiaThe flag of Abkhazia consists of seven green and white stripes with a red upper left canton bearing a white open right hand and seven white stars.
1992 Flag of Artsakh[note 3]AzerbaijanThe flag of Artsakh is based on the Flag of Armenia, and has a white pattern added.
2008 Flag of KosovoSerbiaAdopted by Kosovo on 17 February 2008 as it unilaterally proclaimed independence from Serbia.
1984 Flag of Northern Cyprus[note 4]CyprusAdopted by the Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus (recognised only by Turkey and the Autonomous Republic of Nakhchivan) on 7 March 1984 following the Turkish invasion and the occupation of the northern part of the island in 1974.
1990 Flag of South Ossetia[note 3]GeorgiaThe flag of the South Ossetia is a tricolour, the top stripe white, the middle stripe red and the bottom stripe yellow.
2000 Flag of TransnistriaMoldovaThe flag of Transnistria consists of three stripes (red-green-red) and the Soviet hammer and sickle; it is based on the flag of the Moldavian SSR.

Flags of European dependencies


FlagDateUseState (status)Description
1960 Flag of Akrotiri and DhekeliaUK (overseas territory)Same as the United Kingdom.
1954 Flag of the Åland IslandsFinland (autonomous region)The flag was officially adopted 3 April 1954. As of 1992, it serves as the civil and state flag and ensign. This traditional Scandinavian Cross flag features blue, yellow, and red, all said to be borrowed from the national colours of Sweden and Finland.
1940 Flag of the Faroe IslandsDenmark (autonomous region)The flag of the Faroe Islands, called Merkið, was first used in 1919, was mandated by the British as the civil and state ensign in 1940, and became the official civil and state flag and ensign on 23 March 1948. The flag uses Norwegian colours, commemorating the Faroes once being part of Norway.
1502 Flag of GibraltarUK (overseas territory)The Gibraltar flag dates from 1502, as it is based on the original arms granted it by Spain. The red and white field is taken from the arms, and it is dominated by a red three-towered fortress, complete with a gold key.
1985 Flag of GuernseyUK (Bailiwick of Guernsey) The flag of Guernsey, adopted in 1985, consists of the red cross of St. George with an additional gold cross within it. The change was prompted by confusion over Guernsey and England using the same flag. The gold cross represents Duke William of Normandy, who had such a cross on his flag in the Battle of Hastings, given to him by Pope Alexander II.
1993  Flag of Alderney UK (Bailiwick of Guernsey) A cross of St George defaced with Alderney's coat of arms in the centre.
1938  Flag of Sark UK (Bailiwick of Guernsey) A cross of St George with two lions with a red canton containing two yellow lions similar to the coat of arms attributed to William the Conqueror.
1932 Flag of the Isle of ManUK (crown dependency)The flag of the Isle of Man features a red field with a centred triskelion of three bent legs joined at a central point.
1980 Flag of JerseyUK (crown dependency)The flag of Jersey, adopted in June 1979, is white with a diagonal red cross, surmounted by a yellow Plantagenet crown, the badge of Jersey (a red shield holding the three leopards of Normandy in yellow). Prior to this, the flag was a plain red saltire on a white field.

Flags of European sub-divisions


Austria

FlagDateUseDescription
1921 Flag of BurgenlandA horizontal bicolor of yellow and red.
1946 Flag of CarinthiaA horizontal tricolor of yellow, red and white.
1954 Flag of Lower AustriaA horizontal bicolor of blue and yellow.
1921 Flag of SalzburgA bicolor of red over white.
1960 Flag of StyriaA bicolor of white over green.
1945 Flag of TyrolThe flag of Tyrol is a white over red bicolor.
1949 Flag of Upper AustriaThe flag of Upper Austria is a white over red bicolor.
1938 Flag of VorarlbergA bicolor of red over white.
1844 Flag of ViennaA bicolor of red over white.

Belgium

FlagDateUseDescription
2015 -Flag of the Brussels-Capital RegionA stylized yellow, white and grey iris on a blue field.
1973 Flag of FlandersFlanders is a Dutch-speaking region in the northern half of Belgium.
1991 Flag of WalloniaWallonia is a mostly French-speaking region comprising the southern half of Belgium.

Bosnia and Herzegovina

FlagDateUseDescription
1995 Flag of Republika SrpskaA horizontal tricolour of red, blue and white, very similar to the flag of Serbia without the Coat of Arms (with slightly differently coloured shades).

Finland

Not all regions have selected an official flag.

FlagDateUseDescription
Flag of Central FinlandA banner of arms based on the region's coat of arms. Ratio: 1:1
Flag of Central OstrobothniaA banner of arms based on the region's coat of arms
1998 Flag of KainuuA banner of arms based on the region's coat of arms designed by a Finnish heraldist Olof Eriksson in 1978. The flag itself was adopted in 25.6.1998.
1997 Flag of North KareliaA red flag featuring two armored arms from the regional coat of arms with a fortressy white field on the hoist side of the flag. Adopted by the regional council on 8.6.1997.
Flag of Northern SavoniaA black swallow-tailed flag featuring a loaded bow from the regional coat of arms placed between two yellow stripes.
Flag of Päijänne TavastiaA banner of arms based on the region's coat of arms.
2018 Flag of Tavastia ProperFlag featuring elements from the region's coat of arms. Designed by heraldist Tuomas Hyrsky and adopted by the regional council on the 100th anniversary of the Finnish flag on 28.5.2018. A further ceremony was held in the Häme Castle on 4.2.2019.
1990 Flag of SatakuntaA swallow-tailed banner of arms based on the region's coat of arms from 1557. Designed by artist Reino Niiniranta and officially adopted on 21.11.1990. The regional flag's official flag day is on 11 October, on the name day of Otso.
Flag of Southern Savonia
Flag of UusimaaA banner of arms based on the region's coat of arms.

France

Not all regions have selected an official flag.

FlagDateUseDescription
2016 Flag of Auvergne-Rhône-Alpes
2016 Flag of Bourgogne-Franche-Comté
1923 Flag of BrittanyThe flag, called Gwen ha du (White and black) was created in 1923 by Morvan Marchal (1900–1963, a member of various political and cultural organisations). He used as his inspiration the old Breton flag (a centred black cross on a white background), called Kroaz Du (Black cross), and the flags of the United States and Greece as these two countries were seen at that time as the respective symbols of liberty and democracy. The nine horizontal stripes represent the traditional dioceses of Brittany into which the duchy was divided historically. The five black stripes represent the French or Gallo speaking dioceses of Dol, Nantes, Rennes, Saint-Malo and Saint-Brieuc—while the four white stripes represent the Breton speaking dioceses of Trégor, Léon, Cornouaille and Vannes. The ermine canton recalls the ducal arms of Brittany.
Flag of Centre-Val de Loire
1755 Flag of CorsicaThe Flag of Corsica was adopted by General of the Nation Pasquale di Paoli in 1755 and was based on a traditional flag used previously. It portrays a Moor's Head in black wearing a white bandana above his eyes on a white background. Previously, the bandana covered his eyes.
Flag of Île-de-France
Flag of NormandyNicknamed "Les p'tits cats" in Norman. Based on the medieval emblems of the duke of Normandy.
1937 - Saint Olav flag, using a Nordic cross in reference to the Nordic past of Normandy, created by Jean Adigard des Gautries in 1937.
2016 Flag of Nouvelle-Aquitaine
12th century Flag of OccitanieFlag of the administrative region of Occitanie.
Flags of historical Occitania and Catalonia can be displayed according to the place on local buildings, and both of them on regional buildings.
Flag of Pays de la LoireThe flag is a combination of heraldic elements from the historical provinces that occupied the territory of the region: Brittany, Anjou, Maine and Vendée.
12th century Flag of Provence-Alpes-Côte d'AzurCombining elements of the former historical entities existing over the current territory of the region: County of Provence, the Dauphiné and County of Nice.


Georgia

FlagDateUseDescription
2004 Flag of Adjara[note 3]

Germany

Many states have separate civil and state versions of their flags; the state flags (listed) include the state arms, while the civil versions don't. See Flags of German states.

FlagDateUseDescription
1954 Flag of Baden-WürttembergA black over gold bi-color.

1953 Flag of BavariaThere are two official flags of Bavaria. One is an array of 21 or more lozenges of blue and white, the other is a white over blue bicolor.
1954 –1990 (West Berlin)
1990 
Flag of BerlinWhite with red bars at the top and bottom, with a bear off-centre towards the hoist.
1991 Flag of BrandenburgA horizontal bi-color of red over white, with the arms of the state (land), in the center.
1952 Flag of BremenEight or more alternating red and white stripes, checked at the hoist.
1751 Flag of HamburgA white castle with three towers and a closed gate.
1948 Flag of HesseThe state flag of Hesse consists of a bicolor of a red top and a bottom white stripe.
1951 Flag of Lower SaxonyThe flag of Lower Saxony consists of the flag of the Federal Republic of Germany in Schwarz-Rot-Gold, with the coat of arms of Lower Saxony, shifted slightly toward the hoist.
1990 Flag of Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania
1953 Flag of North Rhine-WestphaliaA horizontal tricolour of green, white, and red.
1945 Flag of Rhineland-PalatinateThe flag of Rhineland-Palatinate is a tricolor of three horizontal bands of black, red and gold. These colors are Germany's national colors and are sometimes referred to as schwarz-rot-gold. In the canton, or the upper left corner, are the arms of the state of Rhineland-Palatinate.
1957 Flag of SaarlandThe flag of Saarland is based on the flag of Germany and is a black, red, and gold (yellow) horizontal tricolor. In the center of the flag is the coat of arms of Saarland.
1991 Flag of SaxonyA bicolour of white over green.
1991 Flag of Saxony-AnhaltThe state flag of Saxony-Anhalt is a yellow and black bi-color. In the center of the flag is the coat of arms of Saxony-Anhalt
1948 Flag of Schleswig-HolsteinThe state flag of Schleswig-Holstein is a horizontal tricolour of blue, white, and red.
1991 Flag of ThuringiaThe state flag of Thuringia consists of a bicolor of a white top and a bottom red stripecentre.

Greece

FlagDateUseDescription
1980s Flag of Macedonia (Greece)The flag of Macedonia (Greece), adopted in 1980s, is a blue banner featuring the Vergina Sun, the emblem of the Ancient Greek Kingdom of Macedon.
1821 Flag of SpetsesThe flag of Spetses, adopted in early 1821 during the Greek Revolution, features an azure field surrounded by a thick red border, defaced with a Cross on an overturned Crescent (symbolizing the Christian Greek victory over the Muslim Ottoman Empire), a spear (symbolizing the armed struggle for freedom), an anchor (symbolizing the maritime tradition and merchant wealth of the island as well as most of Greece), a snake around the anchor (symbolizing the Goddess Athena, wisdom and the island's ancient Greek heritage), a dove (symbolizing peace, justice and prosperity) and the words «ΕΛΕΥΘΕΡΙΑ Ή ΘΑΝΑΤΟΣ», meaning "FREEDOM OR DEATH", Greece's National Motto.
1821 Flag of HydraThe flag of Hydra, adopted in early 1821 during the Greek Revolution, its design and symbolism are almost identical to those of the Flag of Spetses (see above), though the colours are slightly different. The Symbols are also almost identical, though instead of a spear there is a flagpole with a flag and some of the symbols are grey instead of red.
1828 Flag of KastellorizoThe flag of Kastellorizo, adopted in early 1828 during the Greek Revolution, it features a white field surrounded by a blue border. It is defaced with a Cross, an Anchor and a Heart. On the left and right of these symbols are the words «ΜΕΓΙΣΤΗ» and «ΚΑΣΤΕΛΛΟΡΙΖΟ» ("MEGISTE" & "KASTELLORIZO"), the two names of the island.
1864 Flag of CorfuThe flag of the island of Corfu, adopted in 1864 after the annexation of the United States of the Ionian Islands by the Kingdom of Greece as a gift to George I of Greece by the United Kingdom, features a blue field surrounded by a golden border and a thicker dark red one. It is defaced with an Ancient Greek Galley which is surrounded by a circle and the words «ΔΗΜΟΣ ΚΕΡΚΥΡΑΙΩΝ» meaning "MUNICIPALITY/PEOPLE OF THE CORFIOTS".
1864 Flag of ZakynthosThe flag of the island of Zakynthos, adopted in 1864 after the annexation of the United States of the Ionian Islands by the Kingdom of Greece as a gift to George I of Greece by the United Kingdom, features a Green field with a golden depiction of Zakynthos (person), the figure from Ancient Greek Mythology after whom the island was named. Near the top left side of Zakynthos the name of the island in Greek («ΖΑΚΥΝΘΟΣ») is written while under the depiction is the island's motto, «ΘΕΛΕΙ ΑΡΕΤΗ ΚΑΙ ΤΟΛΜΗ Η ΕΛΕΥΘΕΡΙΑ» ("FREEDOM DEMANDS VALOUR AND BRAVERY") by the Zakynthian poet Andreas Kalvos.
1821 Flag of PsaraThe flag of the island of Psara, adopted in 1821 during the Greek Revolution, is almost identical in style and design to the flags of Hydra, Spetses and other islands (see above) with some differences. The field is white and the surrounding border is red while all the symbols it is defaced with are all red. The symbols are also almost identical though instead of a dove there is an eagle, probably a reference to the Eagle of Zeus, a symbol of power and authority. The flag features the words «ΕΛΕΥΘΕΡΙΑ Ή ΘΑΝΑΤΟΣ» ("FREEDOM OR DEATH", Greece's National Motto) and «ΨΑΡΑ» ("PSARA", the island's name in the Greek language).
1821 Flag of Mani PeninsulaThe flag of the island of the Mani Peninsula, adopted in 1821 during the Greek Revolution, features a white field with a blue Greek cross and the phrases «ΝΙΚΗ Ή ΘΑΝΑΤΟΣ» ("VICTORY OR DEATH", a traditional Greek battle cry) and «ΤΑΝ Ή ΕΠΙ ΤΑΣ» (a Laconic phrase said by Spartan mothers to their sons when they left for war; lit. "IT OR ON IT" meaning that if the Spartan is to return alive he should return with his shield [so as to have not dropped it and fled the battle] or be returned on it by his comrades, dead).

Ireland

FlagDateUseDescription
Flag of ConnachtThe flag of Connacht is a heraldic banner of the arms of Connacht, a dimidiated (divided in half from top to bottom) eagle and armed hand.
Flag of LeinsterThe flag of the Irish province of Leinster is a banner with the provincial coat of arms: a gold Irish harp with silver strings on a green field (blazon: vert a harp or stringed argent). These arms are similar to the arms of Ireland, which have the same device on a field of blue rather than green
Flag of MunsterThe flag of Munster consists of three gold crowns on a blue field. The crowns were the arms of Ireland before being superseded by the golden harp in the 16th century. The meaning of the crowns on the flag is not certain, but one possibility is that they may represent three of the medieval Hiberno-Norman lordships in Munster; the O’Briens (Thomond), the Butlers (Ormond) and the Fitzgeralds (Desmond).
Flag of UlsterUlster is one of the four traditional provinces of Ireland. Only three of the nine counties of Ulster are part of the Republic of Ireland, the other six making up Northern Ireland, part of the United Kingdom. However, the flag is still used to represent Ulster as a whole. The Red Hand of Ulster is a symbol that is either derived from the O'Neill dynasty, then the most prominent Irish clan in Ulster, or the Dextra Dei of early Christian iconography. The gold background featuring a red cross comes from the coat of arms of the Burkes, a Hiberno-Norman noble family.

Italy

FlagDateUseDescription
1999 Flag of Abruzzo
1947 Flag of the Aosta ValleyThe flag of the Aosta Valley consists of two vertical stripes (the left black the right red), sometimes with the arms of the Aosta Valley in the centre.
2001 Flag of Apulia
1973 Flag of Basilicata
1992 Flag of Calabria
1971 Flag of CampaniaThe Campania Region has taken as its emblem the one given the Maritime Republic of Amalfi in its infancy. Said emblem consists of a red stripe on a white field

Regional Law n. 1 of July 21, 1971

1992 Flag of Emilia Romagna
2001 Flag of Friuli-Venezia Giulia
1992 Flag of Lazio
1992 Flag of Lombardy
1997 Flag of Liguria
1995 Flag of Marche
1995 Flag of Molise
1995 Flag of Piedmont
1999 Flag of Sardinia
1990 Flag of SicilyThe current flag was adopted July 28, 1990 under regional law N. 2, Art. 12. The law was later updated in 1998. It was not until January 1, 2000, under regional law N. 1, that the flag was adopted as the official symbol of Sicily, including legislation mandating public display of the flag at all Sicilian public buildings. The flag, officially used by the ancient Kingdom of Sicily, has existed in various forms since 1282.

The flag is rectangular in form and is characterised by the presence of the Trinacria (triskelion) in the centre. It features a softened image of the winged-head of Medusa and three ears of wheat (replacing snakeheads) representing the island's fertility. The three bent legs represent the island's three capes or points, while in mythology it is said to represent good luck and prosperity. The background of the flag is divided by a diagonal from left to right, and is coloured gold (lower left) and red-orange (upper right). The colours represent the cities of Palermo and Corleone, respectively, the first two to found a confederation against the Angevin rule.

1983 Flag of Trentino-Alto Adige/Südtirol
1995 Flag of Tuscany
2003 Flag of Umbria
1999 Flag of Veneto

Malta

FlagDateUseDescription
1964 Flag of GozoSymbolises the islands nickname 'The Island of the Three Hills', and also the fact that it is surrounded by sea.

Netherlands

FlagDateUseDescription
1947 Flag of Drenthe
1986 Flag of FlevolandThe flag of Flevoland recalls how the new province was reclaimed from the IJsselmeer. The central yellow stripe, wavy then straight, symbolises the transformation of the sea into land. Its colour symbolises rapeseed, planted to stabilise the land. The blue represents water, the green the land.

The white fleur-de-lys (lily) is a pun. It commemorates Cornelis Lely, designer of the original polders, essential to the province.

1897 Flag of FrieslandThe flag of Friesland consists of four blue and three white diagonal stripes; in the white stripes are a total of seven red pompeblêden, leaves of yellow water-lily.
Flag of Gelderland
Flag of Groningen
Flag of Limburg
1959 Flag of North Brabant
Flag of North Holland
Flag of Overijssel
Flag of South Holland
Flag of Utrecht
1949 Flag of ZeelandIn the centre of the flag, the coat of arms of Zeeland is depicted. The wavy blue lines represent the waves and the constant struggle against the sea.

Poland

FlagDateUseDescription
2000 Flag of Greater Poland Voivodeship
28.12.2012 Flag of Holy Cross Voivodeship
2000 Flag of Kuyavian-Pomeranian Voivodeship
1999 Flag of Lesser Poland Voivodeship
27.10.2000 Flag of Lower Silesia Voivodeship
14.04.2004 Flag of Lublin Voivodeship
2000 Flag of Lubusz Voivodeship
25.06.2002 Flag of Łódź Voivodeship
29.05.2006 Flag of Mazovia Voivodeship
21.12.2004 Flag of Opole Voivodeship
30.08.2002 Flag of Podlachia Voivodeship
25.03.2002 Flag of Pomerania Voivodeship
2001 Flag of Silesia Voivodeship
2000 Flag of Subcarpathian Voivodeship
06.08.2002 Flag of Warmia-Masuria Voivodeship
2000 Flag of West Pomerania Voivodeship

Portugal

FlagDateUseDescription
1979 Flag of the AzoresThe flag of Azores has the colours of the flag of Portugal until 1910. It also has 9 stars representing the islands of the archipelago, the Portuguese shield and a Goshawk (in Portuguese Açor) that gives the name to the archipelago. It is an adaption of the first autonomy flag used during the autonomic movement in 1893, itself adapted of the then monarchist flag.
1978 Flag of MadeiraThe design consists of a blue-gold-blue vertical triband with a red-bordered white Cross of Christ in the centre.

Russia

FlagDateUseDescription
1992 Flag of Adygea
1992 Flag of Bashkortostan
2004 Flag of Chechnya
1992 Flag of ChuvashiaThe flag of Chuvashia consists of a stylized tree of life, a symbol of rebirth, with the three suns, a traditional emblem popular in Chuvash art.
1999 Flag of Crimea[note 7]
1994 Flag of Dagestan
1994 Flag of Ingushetia
1994 Flag of Kabardino-Balkaria
1997 Flag of Kaliningrad Oblast
1993 Flag of KalmykiaOn the flag of Kalmykia, the yellow stands for the sun, the people and the religious faith of the nation. The blue represents the sky, eternity, and steadiness. The lotus is a symbol of purity, spiritual rebirth and happiness. Its five upper petals represent the continents and the lower four stand for the quarters of the globe. Together, they symbolize the will of the Kalmyks to live in friendship and to cooperate with all the nations of the world.
2004 Flag of Kaluga Oblast
1996 Flag of Karachay-Cherkessia
1993 Flag of KareliaThe national flag of the Republic of Karelia is a rectangle with equal horizontal stripes: the upper stripe is red, the middle one is blue and the lower is green.
1997 Flag of the Komi RepublicThe flag is a horizontal tricolour composed of three bars of, from top to bottom, medium blue, green, and white. Together, they represent Komi's natural wealth. The blue represents the splendour and spaciousness of the northern sky. The green represents nature, its bounty, and the taiga. The white represents the color of snow, the purity of nature in the north, simplicity, and austerity, as well as Komi being a country in the north. According to a different interpretation, the white represents the equality and unity of the people and cultures living in Komi.
2011 Flag of the Mari El Republic
1995 Flag of Mordovia
1995 Flag of Moscow
1995 Flag of Moscow Oblast
1991 Flag of North Ossetia–Alania
1991 Flag of Saint Petersburg
2000 Flag of Sevastopol[note 8]
1991 Flag of Tatarstan
1993 Flag of the Udmurt RepublicThe cross/star symbol represents the solar sign, a protective symbol that according to folklore protects man from misfortunes.

Serbia

FlagDateUseDescription
2004 Flag of VojvodinaHoritonzal tricolour of red, blue and white with larger blue portion and three yellow stars.

Spain

FlagDateUseDescription
1918 Flag of AndalusiaThe flag of Andalusia consists of a horizontal tricolour (green-white-green) with the Andalusian arms in the centre.
1982 Flag of Aragon
1982 Flag of AsturiasThe flag of Asturias is light blue with the Victory Cross slightly left of the centre.
1983 Flag of the Balearic Islands
1978 Flag of the Basque Country
1984 Flag of Cantabria
1982 Flag of the Canary IslandsThe flag of the Autonomous Community of the Canary Islands is a vertical tricolour of three equal bands of white, blue, and yellow. The state flag includes the Coat of arms of the Canary Islands in the central band; the civil flag omits this. The designs were made official by the Statute of Autonomy of the Canarian Autonomous Community (Organic Law 10/82) on 16 August 1982.
1982 Flag of Castilla–La Mancha
(1230 – 1715)

1983 

Flag of Castile and LeónIt is formed by the combination of the historical flags of two of the oldest kingdom is the Iberian peninsula in the Middle Ages, the Kingdom of León (purple lion on silver in reference to the meaning of "león") and the Kingdom of Castile (golden castle on red in reference to the many castles that were erected all over the country). The joint historical flag dates back to mid 13th century when Ferdinand III, "the Saint", unified the two kingdoms in 1230, inaugurating the Kingdom of Castile and León, later named Crown of Castile.
May 25, 1933 Flag of CataloniaThe flag of Catalonia consists four red bars on top of a yellow background. One popular (and unproven) legend mentions this flag originating with the streaking of 4 blood-stained fingers across a plain shield. The flag derives from the royal coat of arms of the historical royal family of the Crown of Aragon, House of Barcelona.
1983 Flag of Extremadura
19th century (official from 1984) Flag of GaliciaThe flag of Galicia appeared for the first time in the 19th century, probably based on the colours of the ancient medieval flags of the Kingdom of Galicia. Originally, the flag was a blue St Andrew's Cross over a white field—St Andrew is one of the most popular saints in Galicia. The coat of arms of Galicia was the former flag of the Kingdom of Galicia. Colors blue, white and gold were always related with Galicia. The chalice and the golden crosses on blue background have been its symbol since medieval times (13th century). For some time it was thought that it was based on the flag of the maritime province of Corunna, but today it is known that the design is earlier.
1982 Flag of La Rioja
1983 Flag of the Community of MadridThe seven stars represent the stars of the constellation Ursa Minor. They're five-pointed because they represent the five Spanish provinces which surround the Community of Madrid.
1982 Flag of the Region of Murcia
1982 Flag of Navarre
1982 Flag of the Valencian Community

Sweden

FlagDateUseDescription
1902 (?) Flag of Scania

Switzerland

FlagDateUseDescription
1289 Flag of Bern
15th century Flag of GenevaThe flag of Geneva is the historical flag of the city of Geneva, showing the Imperial Eagle and a Key of St. Peter (symbolizing the status of Geneva as Reichsstadt and as episcopal seat, respectively), in use since the 15th century.
1386 Flag of Lucerne
1803 Flag of St. GallenA white upright fasces with the axe blade facing the hoist on green field.
1240 Flag of SchwyzA white banner with a cross on the top-left
13th century Flag of UriA bull's head seen face on, with a red tongue and a red nose ring, on a yellow field.
1803 Flag of Vaud
1220 (?) Flag of Zürich

Ukraine

FlagDateUseDescription
1998 Flag of Cherkasy Oblast
2000 Flag of Chernihiv Oblast
2001 Flag of Chernivtsi Oblast
1999 Flag of Crimea[a]Controlled by Russia but recognised as part of Ukraine by most of the international community.
1999 Flag of Donetsk Oblast
2002 Flag of Dnipropetrovsk Oblast
2001 Flag of Ivano-Frankivsk Oblast
1999 Flag of Kharkiv Oblast
2001 Flag of Kherson Oblast
2002 Flag of Khmelnytskyi Oblast
1998 Flag of Kirovohrad Oblast
1995 Flag of Kyiv
1999 Flag of Kyiv Oblast
1998 Flag of Luhansk Oblast
2001 Flag of Lviv Oblast
2001 Flag of Mykolaiv Oblast
2002 Flag of Odesa Oblast
2000 Flag of Poltava Oblast
2005 Flag of Rivne Oblast
2000 Flag of Sevastopol[m]Controlled by Russia but recognised as part of Ukraine by most of the international community.
2000 Flag of Sumy Oblast
2003 Flag of Ternopil Oblast
1997 Flag of Vinnytsia Oblast
2004 Flag of Volyn Oblast
2001 Flag of Zaporizhzhia Oblast
2009 Flag of Zakarpattia Oblast
2003 Flag of Zhytomyr Oblast

United Kingdom

FlagDateUseDescription
16C Flag of EnglandEngland is one of the home nations that forms the United Kingdom. The St George's Cross is the customary national flag.
1953 –1973Flag of Northern IrelandNorthern Ireland is one of the home nations that forms the United Kingdom. The 'Ulster Banner' (Ulster Scots: Ulstèr Bannèr; Irish: Meirge Uladh) was the official flag of Northern Ireland between 1953 and 1973, however its use is now unofficial and Northern Ireland lacks an official flag.
14C Flag of ScotlandScotland is one of the home nations that forms the United Kingdom. The 'Saltire' is the official national flag.
9C Flag of WalesWales is one of the home nations that forms the United Kingdom. The Red Dragon (Welsh: Y Ddraig Goch) is the official national flag. The Welsh dragon has ancient origins, but was first officially flown in the modern era in 1959.

Historical flags


FlagDateUseDescription
1992  1998Flag of Bosnia and Herzegovina
1316  1547Flag of the Duchy of Brittany
1398  1489Flag of the Kingdom of Cyprus
1881  1922Flag of Cyprus
1922  1960Flag of Cyprus
1960Flag of Cyprus
1960  2006Flag of Cyprus
1959  1990Flag of East Germany
1990  2004Flag of Georgia
1935  1945Flag of Nazi Germany
1707  1801Flag of Great Britain
1861  1946Flag of the Kingdom of Italy
1918  1920Flag of the Kuban People's Republic
1844  1922Flag of the Ottoman Empire
1992  2006Flag of Serbia and Montenegro
1922  1923Flag of the Soviet Union
1923  1924Flag of the Soviet Union
1924  1936Flag of the Soviet Union
1936  1955Flag of the Soviet Union
1955  1991Flag of the Soviet Union
1918  1941Flag of Yugoslavia
1943  1946Flag of Yugoslavia
1946  1992Flag of Yugoslavia
1958  1972Flag of the European Coal and Steel Community
1973  1980Flag of the European Coal and Steel Community
1981  1985Flag of the European Coal and Steel Community
1986  2002Flag of the European Coal and Steel Community
1993  1995Flag of the Western European Union
1995  2011Flag of the Western European Union

Notes


  1. The European Parliament adopted the Council of Europe's flag in 1983.
  2. Adopted by the European Communities in 1986, which became the European Union in 1992 continuing its usage.
  3. Part of Transcaucasian Region, at the crossroads of Europe and Asia. Physiographically, Armenia falls entirely in Western Asia, while Georgia and Azerbaijan are mostly in Western Asia with small portions north of the Caucasus Mountains divide in Europe.
  4. The island of Cyprus, which includes the Republic of Cyprus, Northern Cyprus and Akrotiri and Dhekelia, is geographically located in Asia, closer to Asian Turkey than to the European mainland. However, the Republic of Cyprus is a member state of the European Union.
  5. Kazakhstan is a transcontinental country located mainly in Central Asia with a small part of its territory located west of the Ural Mountains in Eastern Europe.
  6. Turkey is a transcontinental country located mainly in Western Asia with a small portion of its territory in Southeastern Europe called East Thrace.
  7. Controlled by Russia but recognised as part of Ukraine by most of the international community
  8. Controlled by Russia but recognised as part of Ukraine by most of the international community

References


  1. (in German) Scheidler, Karl Hermann (1865-08-05) Illustrierte Zeitung, Leipzig, 98
  2. Central Intelligence Agency (2015-11-24). The CIA World Factbook 2016. Skyhorse Publishing, Inc. ISBN 9781510700895.
  3. "flag of France". Encyclopædia Britannica. Retrieved 2016-10-08.
  4. "flag of Russia". Encyclopædia Britannica. Retrieved 2016-10-08.
  5. Infos on romaniatricolor.deviantart.com[permanent dead link]

See also


Lists of flags of European countries
Other pages about European flags