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Ensigns and other Naval Flags (Thailand)

Last modified: 2001-09-08 by santiago dotor
Keywords: thailand | historical | ensign: war | jack | admiralty | commissioning pennant | elephant | crown: thai | chakra | anchor: fouled (yellow) | anchors: crossed | circle (red) | stripes: 5 |
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Naval Ensign

[Naval Ensign (Thailand)]
by Jan Oskar Engene

From the Singha Beer source:

Flag of the Royal Thai Navy
This is a rectangular flag, similar to the "Trairanga" except for the red circle in the middle which reaches as far as the red stripes at the top and bottom. In the circle stands a white elephant —in full caparison— facing the flagpole. [Identical to the Naval Ensign above, albeit with a greener 'caparison' as that of the Ambassadorial / Envoy's Flag.].

The flag was designed in B.E.2460 [1917 AD] by the Royal Decree issued by King Rama VI. The flag was flown from the stem [sic — possibly "stern"?] of a ship and from government offices under the jurdiction [sic] of the Navy. The flag has been in use ever since.

Santiago Dotor, 12 November 1999

Naval Ensign 1891-1917

[Naval Ensign 1891 (Thailand)]
by Jaume Ollé

A naval ensign was introduced in 1891. This showed a white elephant in a war outfit standing on a platform, presumably on the red field. The present naval ensign, shows the white elephant in a red disk placed on the middle blue stripe. The details of the elephant's outfit vary in the pictures I have seen, as does the platform it is standing on. The GIF image I made is my own interpretation, and I cannot guarantee that it is correct in detail.

Jan Oskar Engene, 3 October 1996

Naval Ensign 1910-1917 ?

Naval Officer's Flag

[Naval Ensign 1910 (Thailand)]
The blue border matches the original source's background and is not part of the flag
from the Singha Beer source

From the Singha Beer source:

The Naval Officer's Flag
This is a rectangular, red flag with a white elephant - in full caparison-standing on a dias, facing the flagpole. In the top left-hand corner stands anchor threaded through a "chakkra" under a yellow crown. [Like the Naval Ensign 1891 but with a smaller elephant, and bearing the crown+anchor+chakra emblem in the canton.]

The flag was originally designed in B.E.2453 [1910 AD] by royal command of King Rama VI following a special Royal Decree (R.S.129) concerning flags. The flag was flown from the stem [sic — possibly "stern"?] of a vessel and from various government buildings, specifying that the vessels and the buildings came under the juridiction [sic] of the Ministry for the Navy. Use of the flag was discontinued in B.E.2460 [1917 AD].

Santiago Dotor, 12 November 1999

Jack 1917

Chan Flag

[Jack (Thailand)]
by Calvin Paige Herring

The Thai Jack is composed of a flag of the national colors defaced by the naval badge in gold. This badge is composed of an anchor with a rope/chain upon which is imposed a version of the "chakra" symbol. (Note the use of the chakra on the flag of India.) All of which is surmounted by the royal crown of Thailand. Sources: Flaggenbuch 1939, Barraclough 1969/1981 and others.

Calvin Paige Herring, 20 May 1998

From the Singha Beer source:

Chan Flag (B.E.2460) [1917 AD]
This flag is similar to the "Trairanga", except for an anchor — threaded through a chakkra, which occupies the center, beneath [a] yellow crown. [Identical to the Jack 1917 (th-n-jak.gif) above, but with clockwise Chakra instead of a counterclockwise one.]

In B.E.2460 [1917 AD] King Rama VI changed old "Chan" flag into the version seen above. The flag is flown from the foremast of the Royal Yacht on a special mission, whether it be a passenger ship or a battleship. It can be flown from the bow whenever the ship stands guard over the harbour. Later, according to a Royal Decree issued in B.E.2479 [1936 AD], it could also be flown from the stem [sic — possibly "stern"?] of any ship in the Navy, denoting that a court martial was taking place on board.

Santiago Dotor, 12 November 1999

In Flaggenbuch 1939 this appears with the caption "Gößch der Kriegschiffe; an der Fockmastraa: Wachschiff in Hafen; an der Gaffel: Marinekriegsgericht. Dienstflagge der Marinegebäude", that is "Warships' jack; on the foremast: harbour's guard ship; on the gaff: naval court martial. Service Flag on Navy Buildings", all of which fits well with the above reference.

Santiago Dotor, 20 January 2000

Jack 1962

[Navy Jack 1962 (Thailand)]
The blue border matches the original source's background and is not part of the flag
from the Singha Beer source

From the Singha Beer source:

The Navy Flag (B.E.2505) [1962 AD]
This tricolor flag has a yellow anchor in the middle, theraded [sic] through a Chakkra and topped by the royal crown — also in yellow. In the top left-hand corner, i.e. the one nearest the flagpole, are the Royal initials in red trimmed in yellow, together with an ordinal number denoting the monarch's position in the dynasty. Above this stands a crown —also in yellow— from the top of which radiate shards of blue light. [Like the Jack 1917 above, with crown and initials.]

The flag of the Marine's Division [sic — "the Navy"?] was first designed in B.E.2479 [1936 AD]. Only later were the royal initials placed in the top left-hand corner, together with the Royal Crown and the ordinal number of the reigning monarch. This is also known as the "Chaichalermpol Flag" of the Navy. The flag's new design was speciald ["specified"?] by a Royal Decree issued in B.E.2522 [1979 AD].

Santiago Dotor, 29 October 1999

Admiralty Flag

[Admiralty Flag (Thailand)]
by Jaume Ollé

Commissioning Pennant

Crocodile's Tail Flag or Naval Officer's Flag

[Commissioning Pennant (Thailand)] 1:30
The blue border matches the original source's background and is not part of the flag
from the Singha Beer source

From the Singha Beer source:

The Crocodile's Tail Flag
or (B.E.2440)
[1897 AD]
The Naval Officer's Flag

The flag is divided into two parts. The top [rather "hoist"?] part is red and seven inches [17.78 cm] wide, while the remaining section is dark blue, 3 wah* long, and gradually tapers off to a point at the very end. [Please note ]

King Rama V ordered this flag to be designed in B.E.2440 [1897 AD]. It was to be flown to denote the ranks of various officers in His Majesty's Navy. It was known as the Crocodile's Tail Flag until B.E.2453 [1910 AD] in the region of King Rama VI, when it underwent a change of name, In B.E.2479 [1936 AD] it was known as the Commander's Flag.

*A wah is a Thai measurement of length. One was [sic] equals two metres.

So this pennant is 17.78 cm wide by 6 metres long, giving an approximately 3:100 ratio. The length of the red portion near to the hoist is not defined, but from the image it appears to be one third of the total fly. In Flaggenbuch 1939 this appears as Kommandowimpel or commissioning pennant, and it is shown as having a 1:30 ratio, with the hoist no larger than 20 cm, and the red part occupying one third of the length. By the way, note there is another "naval officer's flag" in the Singha Beer source.

Santiago Dotor, 12 November 1999

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