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Belgium: Naval flags, 1936 (Part 1)

Last modified: 2002-11-30 by ivan sache
Keywords: naval service ensign | lion (black) | crown: royal (black) | civil ensign | jack | masthead pennant | yacht ensign | crown (yellow) |
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A decree from 1936 established ensigns, honours etc. to be allocated to the Navy. The text prescribed ensigns, salutes and other courtesy items, but nothing was said about the vessels themselves. The text prescribed two new ensigns for State and private ships, whereas the merchant ensign was not changed. The houseflags had to be allowed. A yacht ensign was also adopted.

Source: L. Nyssen Einige Flaggen der belgischen Marine von 1815 bis heute (Some flags of the Belgian Navy from 1815 until now). Flaggenkurier [dfk] (1995). Paper also available online.

Ivan Sache, 8 April 2001

National and civil ensign, and jack of the State vessels

[Civil ensign]by Vincent Morley

Rectangular Belgian Tricolour flag.

Source: Flaggenbuch [neu92]

Still in use as national and civil ensign.

Naval service ensign

[Naval service ensign, 1936]by Zeljko Heimer

Rectangular Belgian tricolor with a crowned lion in the yellow stripe. The lion is black, armed and tongued in red, the crown is black. Height of the lion is one third of flag heigth. Width of the lion is 8/45th of the flag width. Height of the crown is one sixth of the flag heigth.Width of the crown is 7/45th of the flag width.

Source: Flaggenbuch [neu92]

L. Nyssen, in Vexillacta [vxl] #3 (March 1999), says:
'The State's Navy ensign was regulated by royal order of 28 October 1936, but its real use was postponed until winter 1937/1938. The crews then tinkered with ensigns by using cardboard stencils of the crown and the lion, and in several cases the lion was fully black'.

Ivan Sache, 3 March 2001

Special civil ensign

[Special merchant ensign]by Zeljko Heimer

L. Nyssen (loc. cit.) and M. Lupant [lup98] also mention another ensign regulated by the same 1936 order, which has apparently never been used. It is the State's Navy ensign without crown. It should be hoisted on ships not belonging to the State Navy but commanded by an officer registered in the Roll of Navy and with at least 1/3rd of the crew also registered in the Roll of Navy. The Roll of Navy is the naval reserve, to be armed only in case of general mobilization. This particular ensign is quite similar in use to the British Blue Ensign. It is not mentioned in Album des Pavillons [pay00], but was shown in Flaggenbuch [neu92].

Ivan Sache, 9 August 2000

Masthead pennant

[Masthead pennant]by Zeljko Heimer

A thin rectangular Belgian tricolor flag with a forked red tail. Tail has the same width as the three other stripes (1:1:1:1). The heigth of the flag shall be no more than 15 cm.
Caption says: Twice wider has the other ensigns hoisted.

Source: Flaggenbuch [neu92]

Still in use.

Ivan Sache, 3 March 2001

Yacht ensign

[Yacht ensign]by Zeljko Heimer

Belgian tricolor flag with a yellow crown in canton.

Source: Flaggenbuch [neu92]

Still in use (with variant).

Ivan Sache, 3 March 2001

Go to Part 2

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