- SUB-NATIONAL FLAG
- A generic term for the flag of any territorial division within a sovereign
or independent country or within a federated state, that is subordinate to the
national flag of that country or federated state – a constituent state, province,
county, municipality or similar (see also
‘state flag 2) and
Flag of the State of
Acre, Brazil; Provincial Flag of Saskatchewan, Canada; County Flag of
Huntingdonshire, UK; Municipal Flag of
Góra Świętej Małgorzaty, Poland (fotw)
a) The flags of the constituent
parts of the UK – those of England, Scotland and Wales – although subordinate
to the Union Flag are also national flags under the law. Similar situations may,
however, exist in other countries, and the applicable country's laws should be
consulted to determine the status of such flags (see also
b) In the sub-divisions
of some countries – such as the Länder of Germany or provinces of Spain – there
are variants of the state or provincial flags for civil and official use - but
see ‘ceremonial flag 1)’,
'state service flag'
and ‘official flag 2)’ (also
Civil Flag La Rioja
Official Flag La Rioja, Spain (fotw)
- SUBSTITUTE (or SUBSTITUTE PENNANT)
- Any one of three triangular pennants used in the International Code of Signal
Flags (or any one of four in the NATO Code of Signals) to replace the relevant flag
or numeral pennant when that letter or number is to be repeated thus only one set of signal flags need be carried aboard ship – a repeater or
repeater pennant - see ‘international code of signal flags’ (also
‘numeral pennant’ and
From left: First Substitute to the Third Substitute, ICS, together with a Fourth Substitute making up those in the NATO Signal Code.
Please note that in British RN usage a substitute or repeater was first introduced in Howes Code of 1790.
From left: Substitutes in RN Usage 17901799, 17991803, 1803-1810
- SUBVERTED (or SUBVERTANT)
- See ‘reversed 2)’.
- SUIT (or SUITE) OF FLAGS
- The ensign, jack and masthead pennant of a commissioned warship (see
‘masthead pennant 1)’).
Stealth Warship of the Royal Norwegian Navy wearing a Suit of Flags
- 1) In vexillology see ‘disc’,
‘star 1)’ with its following note and
2) In heraldry see ‘sunin--splendour’.
- SUN-IN-SPLENDOUR (IN SPLENDOR or IN-GLORY)
- The heraldic term for a sun that usually (but not exclusively) has alternating straight and wavy rays, and which often (although not
invariably) shows a face – but see ‘active and inactive’,
‘sun emblem’ and
‘sunburst’ (also ‘mullet’).
Flag of Corneaux, Switzerland (fotw); Flag of Kolobrzeg, Poland (Jarig Bakker)
- The term used when a (usually but not invariably) rising sun is shown complete with its
rays – but see ‘radiating 1)’,
‘sun emblem’ and
‘sun in splendour’ (also ‘active’,
‘active and inactive’ and
A Sunburst Banner of Ireland (fotw): Lebowa Homeland, South Africa 1972 – 1994 (fotw); Corps Commander,
- SUN CROSS
- The term for that variation of a Celtic cross which is now considered a symbol of neo-paganism, but
which has been, or is being used by Nazi and neo-Nazi movements in Europe, and (with a further
variation) the USA - a wheel cross - see
(also arrow cross
Flag of the Unghirden, Norway 1940 – 1945 (fotw); Flag of the
Nordiska Rikspartiet, Sweden (fotw); Flag of the
Ku Klux Klan, USA (fotw)
- SUN DISC (or DISK)
- See disc.
Aboriginal Flag, Australia
- SUN EMBLEM
- The term that may be used for a representation of the sun which is stylized rather than
pictorial, as on the examples shown below – but see ‘disk’,
‘solar sign’ with its following
note and ‘sunburst’ (also ‘active’,
‘active and inactive’,
‘rays 1)’ and
Flag of New Mexico, US (fotw); National Flag of Macedonia, 1992 – 95 (fotw); National Flag of the Philippines (fotw)
- SUNDAY ENSIGN
- A term used in the British Royal Navy and some others, to describe an ensign
larger than the normal daily size that is flown on ships and at naval establishments
on Sundays and/or days of national celebration – a ceremonial ensign or flag (see
also ‘ceremonial ensign’ and
Please note that it this is not to be confused with
a flag of ceremony (see also
'indoor flag’ and
- SUNSET (THE CEREMONY OF)
- The ceremony of lowering the ensign and jack particularly (but not exclusively)
aboard a warship or naval shore establishment at the local time of sunset or at
a specified time at the end of a working day - conducting or making sunset or
evening colours (see also
‘colours 5)’ and
- See ‘surmounted by’.
- SUPPORTER’S FLAG/PENNANT
- 1) See ‘sports flag 2)’.
- 2) See political flag.
A Football Supporters Flag, Croatia (fotw); Flag of the Polish Independence Movement
- Human, mythological or animal figures traditionally placed either side of a shield in a set of armorial
bearings - see also Appendix IV
& Appendix V (also
‘coat of arms’
and ‘heraldic beasts’).
National Arms of Jamaica (fotw);
National Arms of Chile (fotw); State Arms of
Pennsylvania, US (fotw); National Arms of
- SUPPOSITIOUS FLAG
- The term for a historical flag that is actually erroneous, but which is accepted as
factual because of repeated usage (see also
attributed flag and
A Suppositious Spanish Naval Ensign of the 1785 Pattern
- SUPRA-NATIONAL (or SUPER-NATIONAL) FLAG
- The flag of an organization, some aspects of whose authority and/or influence
transcend national sovereignty, as in for example, that of the United Nations
or European Union (but see also
‘Geneva Convention flag’,
patchwork flag 1) and
‘safe conduct flag’.
Flag of The United Nations (fotw);
Flag of The Commonwealth of Nations (fotw); Flag of
The World Bank (fotw)
- SURFING FLAG (or PENNANT)
- See ‘beach flag’.
Surfing Flag UK and Surfing Pennant France (fotw)
- SURMOUNTED BY
- 1) In vexillology a term that may be used when one charge is placed above or at the
top of another – but see note below (also ‘charge 1)’).
- 2) In heraldry the term used when an ordinary or a charge (or charges) is
(or are) placed over – that is in front of – another as per the examples given
below, and which generally (although not exclusively) touches the field – but see
‘overall 2)’) (also
Flag of Santa Eulàlia de Riuprimer; Spain (fotw); Flag of Vilabertran, Spain (fotw)
a) The correct heraldic term for a charge (such as a crown or coronet)
placed above rather than over - that is in front of - another is ‘ensigned’.
b) Also please note, it is suggested that a glossary or dictionary or heraldry be consulted with regard to comparative
use of the terms “overall” and “surmounted by”.
- See ‘overall 2)’.
Flag of Chκne-Bourg, Switzerland (fotw)
- SWAG (or SWAGGED)
- See ‘fan’ (also ‘bunting 2)’).
- 1) A V-shaped cut in the fly of a flag or pennant and forming two points - fork/forked tail or fork-tailed - but see
'double pointed' (also
‘palm’, rounded swallow-tail and
- 2) adj A flag or pennant having such a cut or cuts in the fly (see also
‘swallowtail and tongue’, ‘triangular-tongued’ and ‘triple-tailed 2)’)..
Naval Ensign of Germany (fotw); Flag of
Galanta, Slovakia (fotw)
- SWALLOWTAIL AND TONGUE
- A flag as above, but having a third tail between the other two and so coming
to three points at the fly - triple-tailed or tongued, or three-tongued, or a double-
or triple-swallowtail (see also
‘tongue(s)’, ‘triangular-tongued’ and
From left: War Flag/State Flag/Naval Ensign of Norway (fotw); War Flag/Naval Ensign of
Naval Ensign of Sweden (fotw); Flag of Bajc, Slovakia (CS)
- An ancient symbol in the form of an equal-armed cross with each arm continued at
a right angle, presently used (running anti-clockwise) as the emblem of a Chinese
humanitarian organization founded in 1922, (in a clock-wise form) on the presidential
flag of Finland, and until 1945 as the emblem of the German Nazi Party – a
crooked/hooked cross, fylfot or cross potent rebated (see also ‘appendix VIII’,
cross 2)’, rune(s)’
and sun cross).
From left: China, 1922 - (CS); The National Flag, Germany 1933-45;
Air Force Squadron Flag, Finland (fotw)
- SWORD CROSS
- See cross fitchy in appendix VIII and
cross of Santiago.
Flag and Arms of Alcoutim, Portugal (Sιrgio Horta)
- SWORD KNOT
- See ‘dress knot’.
Officers Sword/Dress Knot, USN and USCG (marlowwhite.com)
- 1) Generically, the vexilloid, flag, coat of arms, emblem or badge that may be considered representative or symbolic
of a nation, region, municipality, people, organization or cause – see
‘coat of arms 1),
‘emblem, military or governmental’,
emblem, state or national’,
vexilloid 1) and
- 2) Specifically, see ‘Logo 1)’.
Former Flag of the Nordic Council (fotw); Arms of
Jesenice, Slovenia (fotw)
- SYMMETRICAL OUTWARDLY (or INWARDLY) STEPPED
- See ‘stepped gonfalon’.