Union Flag 1801-1901

Australia U

Flag Adopted: 1 January 1801 (in the United Kingdom)
Flag Proportion: 1:2
Use: State Flag

CFrom 1801 to 1901 many forms of colonial and Imperial flags flew over the colonies of Australia, but above them all flew the Union Flag - the flag representing the authority of the British Empire.

In 1801 the Union Flag was changed from its previous version to incorporate the cross (saltire) of Saint Patrick, the patron saint Ireland, to represent the formation of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland on 1 January 1801.

Whilst the English heralds of the time decided to represent Ireland in this way, the cross of Saint Patrick has never been used as a national flag in Ireland.

The Union Flag as shown above has become one of the world′s most recognisable flags due to its striking design and its use in all corners of the globe, a legacy of Britain′s dominance as a colonial power.

The Union Flag has remained unchanged since 1801.


Flag of Stars
Frank Cayley, Rigby Ltd, Adelaide, 1966.

Eric Inglefield, Kingfisher, John Wiley and Sons, Canada, 1979.

Flags and Arms Across the World
Dr Whitney Smith, McGraw-Hill, New York, 1980.