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Dictionary of Vexillology: C (Class Flag - Cognisance)

Last modified: 2010-01-02 by phil nelson
Keywords: vexillological terms |
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In British RAF usage, the alternative name for a rank flag – see ‘rank flag 1)’

Air Chief Marshal Air Marshall Air Vice-Marshall Air Commodore
From the left: RAF - Air Chief Marshal, Air Marshal. Air Vice-Marshall, Air Commodore (fotw)

See ‘armed 2’.

A metal fitting with two arms, which is attached to the lower part of a flagpole or mast for securing the halyard (see also ‘belaying pin’, ‘flag pole’ and ‘halyard’).

cleat example
Željko Heimer

A term for the lower fly corner or both lower corners of a flag – particularly (but not exclusively) a religious/processional banner or similar – to which a line or lines are attached so as to prevent unwanted movement - particularly in windy conditions (see also ‘banner 3)’ and ‘outrigger pole’)

(adj) A naval term for when a flag or pennant is hoisted right up to the truck (see also ‘truck’).

See ‘double tailed descate’.

See ‘descate’.

See ‘trefoil’.

The term – and a direct translation of kleestengeln or kleestengel – for a charge largely (but not exclusively) used on heraldic birds (especially eagles in European heraldry) which may be described as a crescent-like shape (usually but not invariably) ornamented with trefoil/clover leaf elements either at one or both ends and/or in the middle, and sometimes visible only on the wings – kleestengeln or kleestengel (see also ‘crescent 2)’ and ‘trefoil’).

Prussia Arms - Brandenberg, Germany Flag - Bast, Czech Republic Broteslavy, Czech Republic Greater Arms - Czech Republic
State Flag Prussia 1892 – 1918 (fotw); Arms of Brandenburg, Germany (fotw); Flag of Bast, Czech Republic (fotw); Flag of Broteslavy, Czech Republic (fotw); Greater Arms of the Czech Republic (fotw)

A small triangular flag designed to be hung vertically usually charged with the emblem and livery colours of a sporting club (see also ‘livery colours’, ’pennant 2’ and ‘souvenir flags’).

The Initials for Cyan, Yellow, Magenta and Black, being the four primary shades used in the print process to create any colour, and an abbreviation for the four-colour printing system (see also ‘cable number’, ‘British colour code’, ‘Pantone Matching System’ and ‘International Colour Code’).

See ‘masthead pennant 2)’ and ‘whip pennant 2)’).

A heraldic term that refers to each individual section or quartering on a shield or banner of arms (see also 'banner 1)', 'impaled', 'quartering' and 'shield 2)’).

1) On flags and generically, the heraldic insignia of an individual or family, or of a corporate institution such as a nation, province or municipality, or of a commercial enterprise. In general terms the coat of arms can contain all the elements that make up a full set of armorial bearings - but see 2) below (also ‘lesser arms’, ‘middle arms’ and ‘state arms 1)’ under ‘arms’).
2) In heraldry, as above but the term only refers to the shield from a full set of armorial bearings – an escutcheon (see also ‘armorial bearings’ and ‘shield’).

Please note that a full set of armorial bearings can include (for example) shield, supporters, helmet, torse, crest, mantling, compartment, motto, collar etc., and whilst many of the terms used are illustrated in Appendix IV and/or briefly defined herein, it is suggested that a suitable glossary or heraldic dictionary be consulted for full details.

Please note also that the emblems of some countries such as those of Mexico or Italy – whilst conforming to the definition of that term as detailed herein – are officially described as “coats of arms” (see also ‘emblem, national’).

1) A rosette or bow, generally in national or livery colours, and sometimes used to decorate a staff below the finial (see also ‘cravat 1)’, ‘finial’, ‘livery colours’ and ‘staff’).
2) A rosette or bow formerly worn by both military personnel and civilians (largely on the hat or shako) to indicate patriotic or political loyalties and still sometimes seen – the cockade was the precursor of many national flags (those of Argentina and France being two examples).
3) See ‘roundel 1)’.

cockade - Columbia cockade - Peru
The National cockades of Columbia and Peru (fotw)

1) In flags a medieval term, now obsolete, for a lance pennon - see ‘lance pennon 1)’.
2) In heraldry as above but the term can include everything by which an armigerous person is known (see also ‘armigerous’).

The ceremonial neck-chain of an Order of Knighthood, worn instead of a sash and emblem on state occasions by members of the highest class of that Order, and often seen surrounding a royal or princely coat of arms – once frequent on royal standards, a modern example would be the collar of the order of the golden fleece around the arms on the royal standard of Spain.

The Royal Arms, Spain (fotw)

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