Page:Notes and Queries - Series 12 - Volume 10.djvu/527

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12 S. X. JUNES. 1922.] NOTES AND QUERIES. 433 by hoisting her national flag in a conspicuous and unusual position, usually in the rigging. With many flags, such as the French, reversal could make no obvious change ; but where, as in the case of our own red ensign, its design was such that its incorrect position could be seen at a great distance, the flag was hoisted upside down to add poignancy to its message. But in any case this reversal would be secondary in import- ance to. the arresting fact of the flag being flown from some spot other than the cus- tomary one. Boutell, if his ' Handbook to English Heraldry ' is correctly quoted by MR. PEARSALL, is wrong in giving the Union Flag as the one to be employed in this way, for merchant ships did not fly the Jack (except as a constituent part of their red ensign), nor would the position of a Jack be obvious except at close quarters, on account of the complexity of its pattern. But MR. PEARSALL also is mistaken in supposing that there is no right or wrong way of displaying the Union Flag. Even our trade flag-makers though still a trifle shaky in the matters of colours and proportions have during the last year or two learned that there is this difference, and one very seldom sees a Jack upside down nowadays in street decorations, though in the bad past I have seen it flown so by naval officers. The matter is quite simple. Scotland came into the Union before Ireland, and is therefore the senior partner (or was). The most honourable quarter of a flag is the upper one next to the jack staff. In that quarter the broad white saltire of St. Andrew should be above the red one of St. Patrick. Then, if the flag is correctly built, all the other quarters will be correct. DONALD GUNN. 40, Dover Street, W. 1. The red strips representing the Fitzgerald saltire in the Union Jack do not cross the flag in the middle of the white cross repre- senting the banner of St. Andrew ; but in the half of the flag that is next the flag- staff they are nearer to the lower portion of the white cross, and in the other half of the flag they are nearer to the upper portion of the cross. It is therefore quite easy to re- verse the proper display of the flag. JOHN B. WAINEWRIGHT. MR. ROBERT PEARSALL'S italics are dog- matic, but the statement is erroneous. The Union Jack is reversed, upside down, displayed in a wrong way, if the white saltire^, the broader band of white, is not uppermost in the left hand (dexter) upper quarter. There are doubtless many Union Jacks in existence which could not be flown incorrectly, simply because they are incorrect themselves : the broad white strip, which is half the saltire, should be carefully distin- guished from the narrow white fimbriation, which is introduced simply to prevent " colour on colour " (red on blue). H. K. ST. J. S. That is, turning it in the contrary direc- tion, the second and fourth quarters occupy- ing the positions properly occupied by the first and third quarters. This appears to be a poor signal of distress on account of the difficulty in distinguishing the broad and narrow crosses : but a flag cantoning the Union Jack and hoisted upside down is a plain and unmistakable signal, and I think Boutell intended to confine his remarks to such a flag. CHEVRON. [We have received a large number of replies to the same effect, for which we beg to thank the several correspondents. No reply, however, quite meets the point of MB. PEARSALL'S observa- tion, in which there is a misapprehension we have encountered before, and which seems worth re- moving. MR. PEARSALL does not, in fact, reverse the flag ; he treats it as if it were coloured on one side only, revolves it, so to speak, upon its axis so that the fly becomes the hoist and finds the broad white border still at the top. He would find it equally impossible, by this plan, to hoist the flag right if he started with it wrong. To reverse a flag which is in the right position it must be turned top to bottom, or hoist to fly, not by merely revolving it on one surface, but by turning it right over to expose the other surface. The narrow whitfe line will then be at the top. The same movement will, of course, bring an incorrectly flown flag into the right position.] PRIME MINISTER (12 S. ix. 446 ; x. 117, 155, 377). In continuance of my previous contribution on this subject I am now in a position, I think, to establish beyond dispute that the term " Prime Minister " was applied to Lord Clarendon in the course of his period of power from the Restoration to his fall in 1667. "That Lord Clarendon employed the term in reference to himself on one occasion I have already, in my previous contribution, pointed out. Since then I have discovered no less than three similar references by his contemporaries. 1. Charles Lyttleton in 1664 wrote : Yet undoubtedly he still retains the pre- mier ministre's place, and has the greatest