Australian Flag

Australian Flag



Flag of Australia - Description of the Australian Flag
  • As the above picture of the Australian Flag indicates the overall background is Blue
  • According to Ancient and Heraldic traditions much symbolism is associated with colors. The colors on the Australian flag represent the following:
    • Blue - vigilance, truth and loyalty, perseverance & justice
    • White - peace and honesty
    • Red - hardiness, bravery, strength & valour
  • The basic style shown in the picture of the Australian flag is described as Canton

  • All Flag pictures depict flags flying, from the viewer's point of view, from left to right
  • The shape and flag ratio of the Australian flag is described as 1:2 ( length twice the height )
  • The upper left quarter of the flag is called the Canton and pictures the flag of the UK
  • The Australian flag pictures a large seven-pointed star known as the Commonwealth Star which  represents the federation of the colonies of Australia in 1901
  • The Commonwealth Star depicts one point for each of the six original states and one representing the six original states and the territories of Australia
  • The Commonwealth Star is displayed in the lower hoist-side quadrant
  • The fly half of the Australian flag pictures a representation of the Southern Cross constellation featuring white stars
  • One small five-pointed star
  • Four, larger, seven-pointed stars
  • It is based on the British blue ensign as the flag was originally mainly intended for naval use
  • The Meaning & History of the Australian Flag - The Union Jack was first used as the unofficial Australian national flag. On 14th April 1954 the "Blue Ensign" flag became the official Australian flag. The blue ensign design was adopted over the red ensign design as red was viewed as the symbol of communism

Canton - Flag Terminology

Flag Terminology - Did you Know ?

  • The design and description uses specific flag terminology based on Heraldic principles
  • Animal blazons should always appear with the heads facing the flag - staff side
  • The Study of the Flags is called Vexillology
  • Your interest in flags makes you a Vexillologist!
  • Increase your knowledge - Play the Flag Quiz
Australian Flag Etiquette
  • Australian Flag etiquette is very strict and is is essential that Flag protocols and rules are followed correctly
  • Basic Flag Etiquette applies to all nations, including Australian as follows:
  • Etiquette relating to the order of precedence for the flag
    • National Flag of Australian
    • State Flag of Australian
    • Military Flag of Australian (in order of creation date)
    • Other Flag of Australian
  • The United Nations uses alphabetical order when presenting a national flag including the Australian Flag. Their flag etiquette ensures that no one country's flag has precedence over another country's flag
  • The National flag of Australian should never be flown above another national flag on the same staff as this would suggest superiority, or conversely, inferiority of one flag, or Nation, over another
  • The Australian flag should never be allowed to drag along the ground
  • A tattered or faded flag of Australian should be removed and replaced with a new flag
  • Due care and consideration must be taken to ensure that the Australian flag is always flown the correct way up
  • A Flag of Australian, when in such condition that it is no longer a fitting emblem of display, should be destroyed in a dignified way, preferably by burning in private with all due care and respect
Flag History & Evolution:
  • The idea of flying a flag grew from the requirements of ancient warfare and the battlefield
  • Shields were painted with emblems to identify Friend or Foe
  • Warriors needed to know where their leaders were - the custom of carrying a pole was adopted
  • An emblem such as a shield, animal or religious device was attached to the pole for identification
  • The emblems were also used for identity and to cover suits of armour - Coats of Arms  were born
  • These emblems were the forerunners of modern flags
  • The Romans were the first to use a cloth flag - they were square and fastened to cross bars at the end of spears - the idea of fastening a flag to the side of a pole soon followed
  • The strict rules of Heraldry are still used when designing an emblem and flag
Terminology & Etiquette in Australian Flag display
  • Hoist - the act or function of raising the Australian flag, as on a rope
  • Half Staff or Half Mast - the Australian flag is hoisted to half of the potential height of the flag pole to denote grief and mourning
    • Performed by first raising the Australian flag to the top, then lowering the Australian Flag halfway
  • Distress - denoted by flying the Australian flag upside-down
  • Manner of hoisting - The Australian flag should be hoisted briskly and lowered ceremoniously
  • No disrespect should be shown to the Australian flag
  • The Australian flag should never be fastened, displayed, used, or stored in such a manner as to permit the Flag to be easily torn, soiled, or damaged in any way
  • The Australian flag should never have placed upon it, nor on any part of it, nor attached to it any mark, insignia, letter, word, figure, design, picture, or drawing on the flag of any nature
  • The Australian flag should be hoisted first and lowered last
  • International Flag relating to Australian Flag usage forbids the display of the flag of one nation above that of another nation in time of peace
  • We hope that the presentation of facts and information regarding Australian Flag Etiquette has provided a useful resource.

National Flags of the World Map


Location: Oceania, continent between
the Indian Ocean and the
South Pacific Ocean

Concise History of Australia & its Flag
  • Crux, the cross is commonly known as the Southern Cross. The stars comprising Crux were visible from the Mediterranean area in antiquity and enabled focal points for ancient navigators.
  • The five brightest stars of Crux also appear on the flags of Brazil, New Zealand, Papua New Guinea and Samoa.
  • Australia has been inhabited for at least 50,000 years
  • It was first inhabited by the remote Asian ancestors of the current Australian Aboriginal people
  • Australia not discovered by Europeans until the 17th century
  • In 1770  Capt. James Cook took possession of the Australian land in the name of Great Britain
  • It was first colonised in 1788 as a penal colony
  • Six Australian colonies were created in the late 18th and 19th centuries
  • In 1901 the colonies federated and became the Commonwealth of Australia and became a self-governing dominion of the British Empire
  • 1914 - 1918 WW1
  • 1939 - 1945 WW11
  • August 1945 The United States dropped atomic bombs on Hiroshima and Nagasaki
  • Australia is a constitutional monarchy with the British monarch as the head of state
  • An Australian referendum to change Australia from a commonwealth, headed by the British monarch,  to a republic was defeated in 1999


  • Land Size of Australia : 7,686,850 sq km
  • Climate / Weather of Australia : generally arid to semiarid; temperate in south and east; tropical in north
  • Population of Australia : 19,950,000
  • Former Name(s) : N/A
  • Capital City of Australia : Canberra
  • GDP of Australia : $570.3 billion (2003 est.)
  • Main Industries :  mining, industrial and transportation equipment, food processing, chemicals, steel
  • Currency of Australia: Australian dollar (AUD)
  • Agricultural products : wheat, barley, sugarcane, fruits; cattle, sheep, poultry
  • Main Colors of Australian Flag : Blue
  • Commonly mis-spelt as Austrelian
The Australian Flag and Nation

We hope that the presentation of facts and information regarding the Australian Flag and Country has provided a useful educational resource. To improve your knowledge of Flags and Vexillology still further check out the Flag and Nations Index and test your knowledge with our interactive, multi-choice, picture-based Flag Trivia Quiz Game - it's fast and it's fun!


Australian Flag

Australian Flag - Picture - Information - Facts - History - Australian Flag - Emblem - Coat of Arms - Meaning - Colors - Flag Terminolgy and Protocol  - Australian Flag - Culture - Geography - Info - Picture - Information  - Australian Flag - Pictures - Facts - History - Emblem - Coat of Arms - Meaning  - Australian Flag - Colors - Flag Terminolgy and Protocol - Hoist - Fly - Canton - Australian Flag - Culture - Geography - Info - Picture - Australian Flag - Australian Flag - Outdoor Flags - house Flags - Military Flags - Historical Flags - Patriotic Flags - Buy Flags - Historic Flags - National Flags - Writtn By Linda Alchin