- The heraldic term for the colour black (see ‘Appendix III’
and ‘rule of tincture’).
- SAFE CONDUCT FLAG
- 1) A special flag of internationally recognized design – such as that of the
Red Cross, Red Crescent, Red Crystal and others – which (by international agreement)
protects personnel engaged in medical succour, ambulances, civil and field hospitals
and hospital ships against military action – a Geneva Convention flag, or flag
of protection (see also
‘international flag’ and
- 2) The Red Cross, Red Crescent, Red Crystal and other recognized flag designs
(together with arm brassards or painted symbols) are also used to indicate the
facilities and personnel of these organisations rendering aid to the survivors
and casualties of natural or human disasters (see also
‘international flag’ and
Red Cross Flag Red Crescent Flag Red Crystal Flag
Please note that on 8 December 2005 the International
Committee of the Red Cross adopted a Protocol (Protocol III) authorizing a red
crystal (diamond shape) as an additional non-religious and politically neutral
symbol, however, please also note that the flags of the Red Cross and of its associated
organizations are at the same time international flags, safe conduct, flags of
protection and Geneva
- SAILOR’S MAST
- In largely German usage, a flag pole or mast (most often) erected ashore for the
multiple display of barge or inland waterway related flags for decorative purposes,
and equipped with a long gaff and yard – a display mast or bargemen’s association
display mast (see also
‘stayed mast’ and
Please note that this term is a translation of the German
schiffermast, and that use of such masts seems to be restricted to associations of
bargemen or similar.
- SAINT ANDREW’S CROSS
- 1) See ‘saltire’.
- 2) A white saltire on a blue field – the national flag of
- 3) A blue saltire on a white field – the naval ensign of the
Russian Federation (and formerly of the Russian Empire)
- a St. Andrew's ensign.
National Flag of Scotland (fotw); Naval Ensign
of Russia (fotw)
Please note that whilst the term St George's Cross
generally refers only to a red cross on a white field, the Cross of St Andrew,
due to a tradition that the saint was crucified on a diagonal cross, has come
to be regarded by many as a saltire of any colour or metal on a field of any colour
or metal. Although this is considered inaccurate in English heraldic or vexillological
usage, it is common in countries and languages where a term equivalent to
“saltire” does not exist.
- SAINT ANDREW’S ENSIGN
- See ‘St Andrew’s cross 3)’ above.
- SAINT GEORGE-TYPE CROSS
- See ‘cross 1)’
(also ‘St George’s Cross 3)’ below).
- SAINT GEORGE’S CROSS
- 1) Generically, see ‘cross 1)’.
- 2) Specifically, the Cross (as above) of St George - the national flag of
England and the flag of the ancient Republic of Genoa. (see also
‘St George’s ensign’)
- 3) Any red cross on a white field - but see note below.
From left: National Flag of England (fotw); Flag of Genoa, Italy (fotw); Arms of Donji Miholjac, Croatia (Željko Heimer)
Please note with regard to 3) however, that in Balkan and
Central European usage a white cross on red is also sometimes referred to as the Cross of St George.
Also please note that any cross of St George whose arms are of
equal length is also a Greek cross (see also
- ST GEORGE’S ENSIGN
- In English later British RN usage now obsolete, the term to describe a white ensign charged with
a Cross of St George overall (as per the present pattern), and formerly used in order to differentiate
it from one having a plain fly (see also
‘St George’s Cross 2)’ and
‘white ensign 1)’).
From left: White Ensign, England 1702 – 1707; With Plain Fly c1630 - 1707;
White Ensign, UK 1707 – 1801; With Plain Fly 1707 – c1730 (CS)
Please note that white ensigns bearing a Cross of St George overall
were introduced in 1702 and were at first restricted to use outside home waters, however, the
version with a plain fly had disappeared by 1744.
- SAINT JAMES’ CROSS
- See ‘cross of Santiago’ in ‘appendix VIII’.
- SAINT PATRICK'S CROSS
- A red saltire on a white field (see also
'saltire' and 'St Andrew's Cross').
Please note that this saltire has no known links
to the saint, but when adopted for the British Union Flag was a symbol of the
knightly Order of St Patrick (see also
- See ‘appendix V’.
- A cross whose arms are of equal width, which usually intersect in the centre of the
flag. canton or panel they occupy, and which generally run from the upper hoist corner to the lower fly corner, and from
the lower hoist corner to the upper fly corner of a flag, canton or panel - a
diagonal or diagonally-centred cross (see
‘layered saltire’, ‘orthogonal’,
‘panel’, 'in saltire',
and ‘St Andrew’s Cross’).
From left: National Flag of Jamaica (fotw); Flag of Prachatice city,
Czech Republic (fotw); War Ensign of Sweden
1815 - 1844 (fotw)
- See ‘in saltire’.
- SALUTE TO THE FLAG
- That custom, often prescribed by law or regulation, which requires military
personnel to salute and civilians to remove their hats or place the right hand
over their heart when a flag is raised or lowered, or when it passes in parade
(see also ‘flag salute’).
- 1) A band of material, usually in the national colours and sometimes bearing
the national arms, worn across the chest by a head of state, especially in South
America, or by civic officials.
- 2) A similar symbol used by political organizations.
The Presidential Sash of Honduras (Eugene Ipavec)
- See ‘daimyo flags’.
- The French for “leaping”, which is also sometimes used in place of, or in addition to, the heraldic
terms rampant or salient – see ‘rampant’ and ‘salient’ in ‘appendix V’
(also ‘erect’ in ‘appendix V’).
Flag of Betten, Switzerland (fotw)
- See ‘serrated’ (also ‘wolfteeth’).
- SCALLOP SHELL
- See ‘escallop’.
- (adj) Where the edges of a flag are cut into repeated semi-circular shapes.
Please note however, that a division line within
a flag or shield is not scalloped, but is more correctly described as either engrailed
or invected (see ‘engrailed’ and
- SCANDINAVIAN CROSS
- A cross with arms of equal width, whose horizontal arm runs along the centre
of the flag, but whose vertical arm is off-centred towards the hoist – a Nordic
or off-centred Cross.
National Flag of Norway (CS); National Flag of Sweden (CS); Åland Islands,
Finland (fotw); Shetland Islands, Scotland (fotw)
Please note that this term should only be used for those flags which are
from, or have a connection with the Scandinavian region, otherwise see
‘off-centred cross 2)’
- SCANDINAVIAN-TYPE (or SCANDINAVIAN-STYLE) CROSS
- See ‘off-centred cross 2)’.
Domingos Martins, Brazil (fotw)
- A small ecclesiastical banner fixed to the top of a bishop’s crosier (see
- See 'tugh’.
- SCHWEBENDES TATZENKREUZ
- See ‘cross pattée’ and ‘cross couped’ in ‘appendix VIII’.
- 1) A form of flag where a rectangular or triangular tongue extends from the upper fly
corner of the flag, or where it has a strip along its top edge that extends beyond the fly
to become a tongue (see also 'palm',
‘stepped fly’ and
- 2) The tail as described above.
15th C Flag of Zurich, Switzerland (CS); Flag of Wloclawek, Poland (fotw)
Please note, it is suggested that in the original German this term refers only to the tail.
- A usually narrow ribbon of varying length and elaboration; it is normally
(but not exclusively) placed below the shield in a set of armorial bearings or
an emblem, and is inscribed with a motto or the name of a state or other
entity – but see ‘ribbon scroll 2)’
(also ‘Appendix IV’,
‘coat of arms’,
The Flag and Arms of The State of New Jersey, US; The National Emblems of Brazil and Brunei (fotw)