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Dictionary of Vexillology: G (Gradient Fill - Grumphion)

Last modified: 2016-05-23 by rob raeside
Keywords: vexillological terms |
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The printing/computer graphics term that may be used when a charge, or a flag's field, is composed of two or more different colours that gradually merge into each other – fountain fill.

badge - Dominica 1955 – 1965 flag - Dominica 1955 – 1965 Christlich-Soziale Union, Bavaria, German ista di Pietro - Italia dei Valori L'Ulivo, Italy
Badge and Flag of Dominica 1955 – 1965 (fotw): Flag of the Christlich-Soziale Union, Bavaria, Germany (fotw); Flag of Lista di Pietro - Italia dei Valori (fotw); Flag of L'Ulivo, Italy (fotw)

Please note that a gradient fill is not found in heraldry and is very rarely employed in classic flag design, but may be seen on some modern (particularly commercial and especially printed) flags.

See ‘optical proportions’.

president of France
Current Presidential Flag of France (fotw)

The heraldic term used to describe that section of a shield or banner of arms that is further subdivided by being impaled or quartered, and generally employed when one or more sets of quartered, quarterly or impaled arms are displayed with another either so divided or otherwise (see also ‘impaled’, ‘quarter’, ‘quartered’, ‘quartering’, ‘quarterly’ and ‘shield’).

Royal Standard 1603 – 1649 1660 – 1707, UK Standard of HM Queen Mary of Teck, UK National Arms, Spain 1938 – 1945 State Flag, Spain 1938 – 1945
Royal Standard 1603 – 1649 1660 – 1707, England (fotw); Standard of HM Queen Mary of Teck 1867 - 1953, UK (Klaus-Michael Schneider); National Arms and State Flag, Spain 1938 – 1945 (fotw)

See ‘continental colors’.

Grand Union
Grand Union/Continental Colours 1775 – 1777, US (fotw)

See ‘coronet 2)’.

Grand-ducal bonnet
Lesser Arms of the Grand Duchy of Luxembourg (fotw)

see 'St. Nino's cross'

St. Nino's Cross
Flag of Ninotsminda, Georgia (fotw)

see 'memorial flag'

The term, now obsolete, for a banner showing all the quarterings of a deceased person's coat of arms for use at that person's funeral (see also ‘achievement of arms 2)’, ‘badge banner’, ‘banner 1)’, ‘bannerole’, ‘coat of arms 2)’, ‘grumphion’, ‘quartering’ and ‘livery banner’).

Please note that according to English heraldry the sizes of a great banner were originally as follows: that of an Emperor; six feet square, a King; five feet square. a Prince or Duke; four feet square, a Marquis, Earl, Viscount, Baron, and Knight-baronet; three feet square.

See ‘great star flags’.

[Great Luminary Pattern]
Great Luminary/Star Pattern of 34 Stars (1861), US (fotw)

A term, now obsolete, for the Scottish heraldic standard as flown from a fixed staff, and there are indications that it was the largest of three sizes (see also ‘battle standard’, ‘heraldic standard 2)’, and ‘pageant standard’).

[Great Standard]
Standard of the Laird of Clan Arbuthnott (The Flag Center)

The term used for those US national flags whose canton shows the stars arranged in the form of a single larger star, and in unofficial use (particularly – but not exclusively - upon merchant vessels) from 1818 until c1865 - the great luminary pattern (see also ‘Betsy Ross flag’, ‘continental colours’, ‘eagle standard’, ‘Franklin flag’, ‘old glory’, ‘quincunx’, ‘star-spangled banner’ and ‘stars and stripes’).

[Great Star flag] [Great Star flag] [Great Star flag]
Great Star Patterns of 20, 26 and 33 Stars (1818, 1837 & 1859), US

1) In UK usage, the pattern of Union Flag displayed by military colours and originally authorized on 30 August 1900 (see also ‘colour 2)’, ‘colours 2)’ and ‘union jack 1)’).
2) In US usage, a term referring to the 1775 pattern of national flag and occasionally used in place of grand union or continental colours – see ‘continental colours’.

Great Union Great Union
The Great Union, UK (Martin Grieve); The Great/Grand Union 1775, US (fotw)

Please note with regard to 1) that this was an attempt to revive the pattern of union flag originally authorised in 1800, in that the white and red saltires are of even width with a fimbriation added, however, the fimbriation to the cross of St George was (due to an error in reading the blazon) mistakenly designed as too narrow.

Great Union
Union flag as authorized in 1800, UK (Zeljko Heimer)

See under ‘arms’.

Greater Arms of Bremen  Greater Arms of Sweden
Greater Arms of Bremen, Germany and of Sweden (fotw)

In vexillology the term for a cross whose four arms are straight-sided and of equal length, and which may, or may not, extend to edges of the flag, panel or canton it occupies (see also ‘balkenkreuz’, ‘couped 2)’ and ‘cross-couped’ in ‘appendix VIII’).

Greek cross example Greek naval flag Switzerland Tonga
From left: Example, Naval Jack, Greece (fotw); National Flag of Switzerland (fotw); National Flag of Tonga (fotw)

A heraldic term for the cooking implement upon which St Lawrence was traditionally martyred, and often associated with him – a grill.

[Green Flag]
Flag of Villars le Grand, Switzerland (fotw): Arms and Flag of Kocierzew Południowy, Poland (fotw); Arms of Sulislav, Czech Republic (fotw); Flag of Malle, Belgium (fotw)

In UK usage the flag awarded to parks and other green spaces that have reached a national standard of excellence (see also ‘blue flag’).

[gridiron] [gridiron] [gridiron] [gridiron] [gridiron]
Flag of Villars le Grand, Switzerland (fotw): Arms and Flag of Kocierzew Południowy, Poland (fotw); Arms of Sulislav, Czech Republic (fotw); Flag of Malle, Belgium (fotw)

In UK usage a term, now obsolete, for the red and white striped flag of the Honourable East India Company. This flag was introduced as an ensign c1600 and worn as such outside home waters from c1676–1824, fter which it was flown as a jack by vessels of the Bombay Marine until 1863 (see also ‘continental olours’, ‘ensign’, ‘jack’ and ‘red ensign’).

[HEIC flag] [England] [United Kingdom]
From left: HEIC Flags, England c1600–1707; UK 1707–1801; UK 1801-1864 (fotw)

Thirteen is the usual number of stripes shown, but that nine or eleven are occasionally seen in contemporary flag books.
b) Information suggests the existence of a gridiron flag bearing a Cross of St George overall (as illustrated below), and that it was worn by armed vessels of the HIEC, however, no further details can be confirmed at this present time.

 [HEIC flag]
Flag of the HIEC bearing a Cross of St George c1820 (Pete Loeser & Željko Heimer)

A (variously detailed) mythological creature that is part lion and part eagle, and which appears as a supporter or as a charge in a set of armorial bearings, on a banner of arms or a flag - gryphon (see also Appendix V’, ‘armorial bearings’, ‘coat of arms’, ‘heraldic beasts’, ‘phoenix’ and ‘supporters’).

[griffin example] [griffin example] [griffin example] [griffin example] [griffin example]
Arms and Flag of Pomeranian voivodship, Poland (fotw); Flag of Troms, Norway (fotw); Flag and Arms of Gryfice, Poland (fotw)

See ‘gridiron’.

[grill] [grill]
Arms and Flag of Jaraczewo, Poland (fotw)

See ‘millstone’.

[grindstone] [grindstone]
Arms and Flag of Espadanedo, Portugal (Antσnio Martins)

Please note that a grindstone can also be a wheel upon which knives etc. are sharpened, and that such an implement has not - as far as can be confirmed - yet appeared on flags.

1) A hole or eyelet, reinforced by stitching or an inserted metal ring, usually found at both ends of the heading on the hoist of a flag, through which clips, attached to the halyard pass - see ‘Inglefield clip
 (also ‘Appendix I’, ‘clip and grommet’, 'hoist 2)', 'tack', and 'halyard').
See ‘rope grommet’.

Please note with regard to 1) that Lt (later Admiral) Edward Inglefield RN patented this system in 1890.

See ‘clip and grommet’.

clip and grommet example
Željko Heimer

1) In vexillology see ‘field 1)’.
2) In heraldry see ‘field 2)’.

ground example ground example
Flag and Arms of Negoslavci, Croatia (fotw)

See ‘command pennant’.

[Group Command Pennant, Spain]
Group Command Pennant, Spain (fotw)

A Scottish term, now obsolete, for a small funeral flag bearing a death's head.

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