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The Princevlag (The Netherlands)

Last modified: 2003-05-02 by
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[Princevlag] by Mark Sensen, 26 February 1998

See also:

The orange-white-blue "Princevlag"

Oranje-blanje-bleu "Prinsevlag"

In 1572 the orange-white-blue flag was first mentioned when the town of Den Briel was liberated. The red-white-blue flag was first mentioned in 1596. Around 1630 more flags with a red stripe were used, and after 1660 the version with the orange stripe became very rare. It's still unknown why the orange stripe was changed to red, but there are two main theories:
  1. a new method of producing orange paint resulted in a darker shade, almost red.
  2. the House of Orange became less popular.
The colours were however never laid down officially, so in the 1930s the question of red versus orange was raised again, especially by the national socialist NSB party, who used the orange version. On 19 February 1937 Queen Wilhelmina decided by Order in council that: "The colours of the flag of the Kingdom of the Netherlands are red, white and blue." In 1958 the colours were defined more precisely as bright vermilion and cobalt blue.
Mark Sensen, 26 February 1998

The prinsvlag formed the basis of the South African flag in use until 1994.
Paul Adams, 21 February 1998


An 11-striped "Princevlag"

[11-striped Princevlag] image sent by Brian Wilder, 9 Jun 2002

Can you please precisely identify this Dutch flag for me? There is also a more colourful version flown by the Dutch ship Batavia (replica of the 17th century 'retourship') when she visited Sydney for the Olympic Games in 2000.Was this the flag of the VOC (Dutch East India Company)?
Brian Wilder, 9 Jun 2002

This is a so-called "triple Princeflag". "Princeflag" is the early name for the Dutch tricolour (either orange-white-blue or red-white-blue). It was not uncommon to have the stripes twice (double Princeflag) or even three times (triple Princeflag). And sometimes an extra white stripe was added blue and red.


6 Stripes

[6-striped Princeflag] by Mark Sensen, 10 Jun 2002

The Double Princevlag.
Mark Sensen, 10 Jun 2002


7 Stripes

[7-striped Princeflag] by Mark Sensen, 10 Jun 2002

The Double Princevlag with one white stripe added.
Mark Sensen, 10 Jun 2002


9 Stripes

[9-striped Princeflag] by Mark Sensen, 10 Jun 2002

The Triple Princevlag.
Mark Sensen, 10 Jun 2002


11 Stripes

[11-striped Princeflag] by Mark Sensen, 10 Jun 2002

The Truple Princevlag with two white stripes added.
Mark Sensen, 10 Jun 2002



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