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National Flags

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Pan-Arab Colours
Red, Green and Black
Red, White and Green
Red, White and Blue
Red, Yellow and Blue
Red, Yellow and Green
Red, Yellow and Black
Blue and White
Blue and Yellow
Other

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National Flags

See also Capital Cities, Currencies and Flags for pictures, and (for other flags) Flags.

On this page I've tried to categorise the flags of every country. As far as possible I've done this by colours. In categorising, I've generally (but not always) ignored any symbols (coats of arms, etc.) that appear on the flag, and concentrated on the geometrical shapes. Many flags includes a triangle, or chevron, at the hoist side; I've also ignored these in the colour categorisations.

For each flag, I've given a description as well as a picture. The descriptions are designed to be used (if you so wish) to set questions without pictures.

Unless otherwise stated, where a symbol (decoration) is described it's centred in the flag.

Note that if you open any of the Information windows, you'll probably reveal the answer to the question!

Pan–Arab Colours

I added this section in July 2016 after watching the Eggheads struggle (and fail) to identify the colour of the top stripe in the flag of Yemen.

The flags of several Middle Eastern countries, and some North African ones, are horizontal tricolours in various combinations of the Pan–Arab colours: black, white, green and red. They're a real nightmare for the quizzer!

In the following table I've tried to describe the ones that I think are particularly confusing. They're in alphabetical order of the stripes as they appear on the flag, reading from top to bottom. For example: the flag that's described on the first row has black, white and green stripes, reading from top to bottom.

Top to Bottom Decoration Country
Click for flag Black White Green Red chevron against the hoist, with a white star Click to show or hide the answer
Click for flag Green White Black Red rectangle against the hoist Click to show or hide the answer
Click for flag Green White Red Inscription on the borders of the stripes (see below) Click to show or hide the answer
Click for flag Green White Red Black trapezium to the left Click to show or hide the answer
Click for flag Red Black Green White crescent and star on the black stripe Click to show or hide the answer
Click for flagRed White Black Gold eagle crest on the white Click to show or hide the answer
Click for flagRed White Black Green inscription (the 'takbir') on the white Click to show or hide the answer
Click for flagRed White Black Green chevron against the hoist Click to show or hide the answer
Click for flag Red White Black Two green stars on the white Click to show or hide the answer
Click for flag Red White Black Nothing Click to show or hide the answer
Click for flag White Red Green Red rectangle against the hoist, with the national emblem in white Click to show or hide the answer

There's one more flag that we probably should cover here:

Click for flag Black White Green Red chevron against the hoist (no star) Click to show or hide the answer

Palestine of course is not a full member of the United Nations – it's a non–member observer state, along with the Holy See (a.k.a. the Vatican City). But that doesn't mean it won't come up in a quiz. Note that its flag is the same as that of Jordan, without the white star.

I've come up with a few mnemonics to help us remember all this – or at least, the order of the stripes (which, I believe, is at least half the battle). If you'd like to see them, please click here.

Other countries that use these colours

The following two flags use all four of the Pan–Arab colours, and are very similar except for the chevron in one case and the symbol in the other. Note that in both cases, the three main stripes in the tricolour are separated by narrow white ones.

Click for flag Horizontal tricolour Black Red Green Shield and crossed spears Click to show or hide the answer
Click for flag Horizontal tricolour Black Red Green Blue chevron with a yellow star Click to show or hide the answer

Red, Green and Black

This section and the next deal with countries whose flags use three of the four pan–Arab colours – but are not (as far as I'm aware) Arab countries. Note that in some cases the third colour is in the symbol.

Click for flag Vertical tricolour Black Red Green National emblem in white Click to show or hide the answer
Click for flag Horizontal tricolour Black Red Green Red sunrise on the black Click to show or hide the answer

Red, White and Green

Red, white and green is a very popular combination. Red is typically used to represent the blood shed by a country's citizens in their struggle for freedom; white represents peace, and green represents agriculture.

Click for flag Vertical tricolour Black Red Green National emblem in white Click to show or hide the answer
Click for flag Vertical halves Green White Crescent and star, in red Click to show or hide the answer
Click for flag Two unequal horizontal bands, red above green, with a red and white ornamental design against the hoist Click to show or hide the answer
Click for flag Horizontal tricolour White Green Red Nothing Click to show or hide the answer
Click for flag A white saltire, dividing the field into red above and below and green to left and right; merging with a central white roundel, charged with three red stars bordered in green Click for more information Click to show or hide the answer
Click for flag Horizontal tricolour Green White Red Blue chevron against the hoist, and the coat of arms Click for more information Click to show or hide the answer
Click for flag Horizontal tricolour Red White Green Nothing Click to show or hide the answer
Click for flag Vertical tricolour Green White Red Nothing Click to show or hide the answer
Click for flag Horizontal triband Red White Red The national tree (a cedar) in green Click to show or hide the answer
Click for flag Two horizontal bands, red above green, with a white rectangle against the hoist Click to show or hide the answer
Click for flag A green rectangle centred on a red field, with a white crescent Click to show or hide the answer
Click for flag Vertical tricolour Green White Red Coat of arms Click to show or hide the answer
Click for flag Horizontal tricolour Red White Green A stylised crown with an arc of seven stars Click for more information Click to show or hide the answer

Red, White and Blue

Red, white and blue is probably the most popular of all colour combinations.

Vertical tricolours

The most famous red, white and blue tricolour is the only one where the bands are vertical.

Starting at the hoist Decoration Country
Click for flag Blue White Red Nothing Click to show or hide the answer

Horizontal tricolours

Four of the following eight countries were in Yugoslavia. The flag of Yugoslavia was a red, white and blue horizontal tricolour; interestingly, all four modern countries have chosen a different order from the Yugoslavian flag. Fortunately, each of them has its coat of arms on the flag, and this is probably the easiest way to distinguish them.

Top to Bottom Coat of arms Country
Click for flag Red Blue White Double-headed eagle, topped by a crown Click to show or hide the answer
Click for flag Red White Blue None (note that the blue is quite pale) Click to show or hide the answer
Click for flag Red White Blue None Click to show or hide the answer
Click for flag Red White Blue Coat of arms on the obverse; seal of the treasury on the reverse Click to show or hide the answer
Click for flag Red White Blue Features the distinctive chequerboard shield Click to show or hide the answer
Click for flag White Blue Red None Click to show or hide the answer
Click for flag White Blue Red A double cross on a triple peak Click to show or hide the answer
Click for flag White Blue Red A mountain with three peaks, and three stars in the sky Click to show or hide the answer

For the record – because you never know when it might come up – here are the details of the Yugoslavian flag:

Top to bottom Decoration Country
Click for flag Blue White Red Nothing Click to show or hide the answer

Other red, white and blue flags

Note that as in other sections, some of these flags have coats of arms or symbols in colours other than blue and white – most commonly yellow.

Click for flag Five white stars of the Southern Cross, plus the Commonwealth Star, and the Union Flag in a canton; all on a blue field Click to show or hide the answer
Click for flag A broad blue bar, with narrow red bars above and below, and the coat of arms: two men, one with lighter skin bearing an axe, and one with darker skin bearing an oar, before a mahogany tree, bearing between them a shield; bordered by a circle of fifty leaves Click to show or hide the answer
Click for flag A blue, red and blue horizontal triband, with a depiction of the Angkor Wat temple complex in white Click to show or hide the answer
Click for flag A narrow red fess bordered by two white ones, on a blue field, with a circle of ten yellow stars representing its main islands Click to show or hide the answer
Click for flag Two horizontal bands, white above red, with a white star in a blue canton Click to show or hide the answer
Click for flag A red bar, bordered above and below with narrower white and blue ones Click to show or hide the answer
Click for flag A blue flag with two white bars; a red chevron, with a white star, against the hoist Click to show or hide the answer
Click for flag Two equal horizontal bands, white above red, with a red chevron against the hoist Click to show or hide the answer
Click for flag A white cross, with blue in the top quarter against the hoist and at the bottom fly, and red vice versa; coat of arms in the centre Click to show or hide the answer
Click for flag A red Nordic cross, with white borders, on a blue field Click to show or hide the answer
Click for flag Wavy blue and white bands in the lower half, representing the sea; red above representing the sky, with a depiction of a yellow sun rising and a frigatebird above Click to show or hide the answer
Click for flag A red, blue and red tribar, with a white roundel in the centre Click to show or hide the answer
Click for flag A red flag with five white bars, and a white star in a blue canton Click to show or hide the answer
Click for flag A red flag with seven white bars, and a blue canton with a yellow crescent and 14-pointed star Click to show or hide the answer
Click for flag A red flag with two triangular sections, each bearing a white symbol (the sun and a crescent moon), all bordered in blue Click to show or hide the answer
Click for flag Four red stars of the Southern Cross, each bordered in white, and the Union Flag in a canton; all on a blue field Click to show or hide the answer
Click for flag A broad red bar, with blue bars above and below, separated by narrow white bars; and a red star in a white roundel Click to show or hide the answer
Click for flag A blue Nordic cross, with white borders, on a red field Click to show or hide the answer
Click for flag Top fly quarter red, bottom hoist quarter blue; the other two quarters white, with a blue star in the top hoist quarter and a red star in the bottom fly Click to show or hide the answer
Click for flag Two equal bars, blue above red; a white chevron against the hoist, with a large yellow sun at its centre and a small yellow star in each corner Click to show or hide the answer
Click for flag A red flag, with a blue canton bearing five white stars of the Southern Cross Click to show or hide the answer
Click for flag A blue bar, bordered above and below with narrower white and red ones Click to show or hide the answer
Click for flag A red symmetric cross and a red saltire, superimposed on a white saltire on a blue field, with a white border around the symmetric cross Click to show or hide the answer
Click for flag A red flag with six white bars, and fifty white stars in a blue canton Click to show or hide the answer

Red, Yellow and Blue

There are seven countries whose flags are red, yellow and blue tricolours. On four of them the stripes are vertical, and on the other three they're horizontal.

Just to confuse us even more, the four with vertical stripes all have the stripes in the same order, and so do the three with horizontal stripes.

Vertical tricolours

  Starting at the hoist Decoration   Country
Click for flag Blue Yellow Red Coat of arms (an ornate shield) Click to show or hide the answer
Click for flag Blue Yellow Red Nothing Click to show or hide the answer
Click for flag Blue Yellow Red Coat of arms (an eagle bearing a shield with the head of an aurochs) Click to show or hide the answer
Click for flag Blue Yellow Red Nothing Click to show or hide the answer

There is no difference between the flags of Chad and Romania, except for a very slight colour variation. Needless to say, if setting either of these in a quiz, you should specify whether it's an African country or a European one.

Horizontal tricolours

  Top to Bottom Decoration   Country
Click for flag Yellow Blue Red Nothing Click to show or hide the answer
Click for flag Yellow Blue Red Coat of arms Click to show or hide the answer
Click for flag Yellow Blue Red Eight white stars, arranged in an arc Click to show or hide the answer

Note that on the Colombian and Ecuadorean flags, the yellow stripe is twice as wide as the blue and red. But the easiest way to distinguish the three is by the decorations (nothing for Colombia, coat of arms for Ecuador, stars for Venezuela).

Red, Yellow and Green

There are just two countries whose flags are red, yellow and green tricolours. On both of them the stripes are horizontal. Neither of them has any decoration, so to distinguish between them it's simply a case of learning the order of the stripes.

Vertical tricolours

  Top to bottom Decoration   Country
Click for flag Green Yellow Red Yellow star on a blue roundel Click to show or hide the answer
Click for flag Red Yellow Green Nothing Click to show or hide the answer
Click for flag Red Yellow Green Black star Click to show or hide the answer
Click for flag Yellow Green Red Nothing Click to show or hide the answer
Click for flag Yellow Green Red White star Click to show or hide the answer

Horizontal tricolours

  From the hoist Decoration   Country
Click for flag Green Red Yellow Yellow star Click to show or hide the answer
Click for flag Green Yellow Red None Click to show or hide the answer
Click for flag Green Yellow Red Green star Click to show or hide the answer
Click for flag Red Yellow Green Nothing Click to show or hide the answer

Other red, yellow and green flags

Click for flag Two equal bands, yellow above red, with a green rectangle against the hoist Click to show or hide the answer
Click for flag A yellow bend, with green above (and to the left) and red below (and to the right) Click to show or hide the answer
Click for flag Two equal bands, yellow above green, and a red rectangle against the hoist with a black star Click to show or hide the answer

Red, Yellow and Black

There are just two countries whose flags are red, yellow and black tricolours. Both are so well-known that any quizzer should be able to identify them. The only way you might get caught out is if you get asked what order the colours are in.

  Top to bottom Decoration   Country
Click for flag Black Yellow Red Nothing Click to show or hide the answer
Click for flag Black Red Yellow Nothing Click to show or hide the answer

Blue and White

Click for flag A pale blue, white and pale blue triband, with the Sun of May Click for more information Click to show or hide the answer
Click for flag A blue, white and blue triband, with the national coat of arms Click to show or hide the answer
Click for flag A blue Nordic cross on a white field Click to show or hide the answer
Click for flag A blue flag with four white bars, and a white Greek cross in a blue canton Click to show or hide the answer
Click for flag A blue, white and blue triband, with five blue stars arranged in a quincunx Click to show or hide the answer
Click for flag A sky-blue, white and sky-blue vertical triband (representing the country's situation between two oceans), with the national emblem (which features a quetzal) in the centre Click for more information Click to show or hide the answer
Click for flag A broad white band, bordered above and below by narrow blue and white bands, with a star of David outlined in blue Click to show or hide the answer
Click for flag Four white stars, each representing one of the four federal states, on a sky-blue field Click to show or hide the answer
Click for flag A blue, white and blue horizontal triband, with the national coat of arms (triangular in shape, with the name of the country in a circle around it) in the centre Click for more information Click to show or hide the answer
Click for flag Two equal horizontal bands, white above azure, with the national coat of arms in the centre Click for more information Click to show or hide the answer
Click for flag Azure, a mullet argent (a white star centred on a sky-blue field) Click for more information Click to show or hide the answer
Click for flag A white flag with four blue bars, and the yellow Sun of May in a white canton Click for more information Click to show or hide the answer

Blue and Yellow

Click for flag Equal horizontal bands of aquamarine, gold and aquamarine, with a black chevron at the hoist Click for more information Click to show or hide the answer
Click for flag Equal vertical bands of ultramarine, gold and ultramarine, with a black trident (less its staff) Click for more information Click to show or hide the answer

Other

Colour used in more national flags than any other Click to show or hide the answer

European country: black two–headed eagle on a red ground Click to show or hide the answer
Blue, white and blue horizontal bands, with a yellow sun on the central white band Click to show or hide the answer
Flag said to have been invented during the Crusades by Duke Leopold V when he removed the belt from his blood–stained battledress (leaving a white stripe through the middle) Click to show or hide the answer
Green with a red circle in the middle Click to show or hide the answer
Vertical stripes of blue, yellow and blue, with a black trident on the central (yellow) stripe Click to show or hide the answer
Bears the motto Ordem e Progresso (Order and Progress); also a representation of the night sky above its capital on the night of its republican coup (15 November 1889) – each star represents a state (27 from 1992) – more stars than any other country apart from the USA Click to show or hide the answer
Bears the maple leaf as a national symbol Click to show or hide the answer
Known as La Estrella Solitaria (the Lone Star) – has a single white star in a blue canton Click to show or hide the answer
Map of the country Click to show or hide the answer
Three horizontal stripes, of red, white and blue (top to bottom), with the national coat of arms featuring the distinctive chequerboard shield Click to show or hide the answer
National flag that has remained unchanged the longest (dates back to the 14th century) Click to show or hide the answer
(Commonwealth) countries with the Union Jack on their flags: Australia, NZ and Click to show or hide the answer
Blue and white horizontal stripes, with a blue cross in a white canton Click to show or hide the answer
Features the dark blue, 24–spoke "wheel of law" (Dharmachakra) Click to show or hide the answer
Adopted 1980: bears the words "Allahu Akbar" (God is the greatest) in stylised Arabic script, 22 times – 11 times at the edge of each coloured horizontal band (green at the top and red at the bottom); and, on the central white band, the symbol known as the tawhid ("the oneness [of God]") Click to show or hide the answer
The only country whose flag doesn't have red, white or blue Click to show or hide the answer
Shield and crossed spears Click to show or hide the answer
National flag with a tree on it (a cedar – the national tree) Click to show or hide the answer
Modelled on the US flag – but only 11 stripes and one star (African republic) Click to show or hide the answer
Had a flag of only one colour (green), from 1977 to 2011 Click for more information Click to show or hide the answer
Black, red and green horizontal stripes, with a red sunrise on the black Click for more information Click to show or hide the answer
Changed its flag in 2017, by adding red bands at the top and bottom (to a yellow star and upward–pointing crescent on a green field) Click to show or hide the answer
Coat of arms, featured on the flag, has an eagle perched on a cactus plant, eating a snake Click to show or hide the answer
Interlinked outline of a green star, on a red background Click to show or hide the answer
Includes the yellow star of Marxism, a book to represent education, a hoe for agriculture, and a Kalashnikov AK–47 rifle for defence (African republic) Click to show or hide the answer
Only country whose flag is not rectangular (essentially two right–angled triangles) Click to show or hide the answer
(Commonwealth) countries with the Southern Cross on their flags: Australia, NZ, Click to show or hide the answer
Click to show or hide the answer
Two different sides: one has the national arms, one the treasury seal Click to show or hide the answer
Flag is essentially similar to that of Canada, without the maple leaf Click to show or hide the answer
Arabic inscription ("There is no god but God and Mohammed is the prophet of God") above a sword – white, on a green ground Click to show or hide the answer
Bears a representation of Triglav, its highest mountain Click to show or hide the answer
Flag has six colours (red, white, blue, yellow, green and black) – more than any other (ignoring coats of arms, etc.) Click for more information Click to show or hide the answer
Black, red and green horizontal stripes, each separated by a narrow white stripe; a blue triangle to the left, with a yellow star Click to show or hide the answer
Shows a yellow lion, holding a sword or dagger, on a dark red background; also (on the left hand side) vertical green and orange stripes; all on a yellow background Click to show or hide the answer
European country with a square flag (also Vatican City) Click to show or hide the answer
Nine horizontal stripes, five white and four blue, with the sun in a canton Click to show or hide the answer
Controversially added an eighth star to its flag, in 2006 Click for more information Click to show or hide the answer

© Haydn Thompson 2018