Many nations like Australia had experienced colonialism and later on became independent countries. Their national flag marks the history of the struggle and sacrifices to win freedom. 

The Australian flag is the national symbol, identity and expression of pride of people living in Australia. So, let’s know more about the history, facts, colors, and protocols of the national flag of Australia.

History Of Australia Flag

In 1824, the National colonial flag of Australia was introduced featuring St. George’s cross, 4 eight-pointed stars, and a Union Jack.

Australian Federation Flag

Later on, in 1830, a second Australian flag featuring the five eight-pointed was introduced as the Australian Federation Flag but not accepted officially.

Eureka Flag

The Eureka flag came into being in 1854 at Eureka Stockade and represented the Southern Cross.

After the federation of Australian states into the Commonwealth of Australia in 1901, the first prime minister Rt. Hon. Sir Edmund Barton held a design competition to adopt the national flag of Australia. The historical design competition received over 30,000 design entries where each design was judged on 7 criteria, and five of the similar designs were selected. On September 3, 1901, the first time the flag was flown at the Exhibition building in Melbourne and was originally named Commonwealth Blue Ensign. 

The flag had two versions, i.e., red ensign and blue ensign. The private citizens were not allowed to fly blue ensign but only on government buildings, forts, and naval vessels. However, in 1953, the Blue Ensign was recognized as the official Australian flag. 

Color Of Australia Flag

The national flag of Australia has three colors, i.e. Blue, Red, and White colours. The different colour codes are as follows.

Color Type Blue Red White
Pantone 280 C 185 C Safe
RGB 0–0–139 255–0–0 255–255–255
CMYK 100, 80, 0, 0 0, 100, 100, 0 0, 0, 0, 0
Hex #00008B #FF0000 #FFFFFF


Symbolism of the Flag of Australia

The Australian flag features the blue field and three prominent symbols, i.e. Union jack, commonwealth star, and Southern Cross. The Blue field colour of the Australian flag represents it as an island continent. The union jack in the flag represents the loyalty of Australia towards the British Empire. Moreover, the fly side of the flag has the Southern Cross, aka Crux is the brightest constellation in the Southern hemisphere and symbolizes democracy and freedom of speech. The seven-pointed large star in the National flag of Australia represents the commonwealth Star symbolizing the states and territories of Australia.

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Australia Flag FAQS

Every year the national flag day is celebrated on 3rd September, where all Australians fly their national flag as an expression of joy, pride, and unity.
To select the design, prime minister Edmund Barton announced a design competition and received over 30,000 entries. However, the design proposed by Ivor Evans, along with 4 others, got selected.
On 3rd September 1901, the first time the design of the Australian flag was revealed.
The Southern Cross of the Australian flag is basically the constellation of five stars and symbolizes the struggle to win freedom against colonialism.
Yes, the national flag of Australia can be flown at night when illuminated.
The 7 stripes over the Australian flag represents the Union Jack that actually shows the loyalty of Australia to the British empire.
Like other national flags, the recommended proportion of the Australian flag is 2:1.
The Southern Cross constellation represents Australian geography and is known as Alpha, Beta, Delta, Gamma, and Epsilon Crucis.
Lowering or half-masting of the Australian flag represents the state’s sorrow and mourning.

Besides the national flag of Australia, it has some interesting facts that are worth knowing. So here we’ve rounded up a list of facts - let’s dive into it to know more about it.

  • The first national flag was hoisted on September 3, 1901, at the Royal Exhibition Buildings, Melbourne. Before that, the British flag Union Jack was used to hoist.
  • The National flag of Australia is the first flag selected by the open public. The design competition received over 30,000 entries and took 6 days to judge and select.
  • It constitutes three parts where each part is on the same blue field, sharing equal significance.
  • Initially, only the Blue ensign was only for the government officials, where the Red ensign was for the public and locals.
  • In 2001, the centenary flag was presented to Hon John Howard MP, Prime Minister of Australia, on the 100th anniversary of the first flag.
  • Each state and territory of Australia has its own flag, where most of them have different designs and deviated from the blue ensign.
  • The six stars corresponded to the constellation on the Australian flag represents 6 states of the country, i.e. Gamma Crux, Delta Crux, Epsilon Crux, Alpha 1 Crux, and Beta Crux.
  • The largest star on the Blue ensign represents CommonWealth and loyalty towards the Queen and the British empire.
  • The citizens of Australia are informed through the email services to tell when to fly the flag.

Different Australian Flag 

In 1964, the Queen's personal Australian flag was introduced. It has six badges representing the six states of Australia. In the centre, it has a seven-pointed federation star with the blue roundel with the golden crowned alphabet “E” and roses. 

Governor General of Australia Flag 

This flag is given to the representative of the Queen in Australia. It features St Edward's Crown with the crowned lion on a blue field. 

Governors of the Australian States Flag 

Each governor of an Australian state has their own flag. Some of them are discussed below. 

New South Wales Governor Flag: With the Union Jack on the blue field, it has a red St. George's Cross with eight-pointed stars and an elongated lion. 

Victoria Governor Flag: The flag of the Governor of Victoria has St. Edward's Crown and Southern cross with different numbers of pointed stars as follows 8,7,7,6, and 5. 

Queensland Governor Flag: It has a blue Maltese Cross featuring the crown in the center. It symbolizes Queen Victoria and her representative’s (Governor) authority. 

South Australia Governor Flag: On the Blue ensign, it has a white-backed magpie badge over the yellow disc symbolizing the arms of Prussia and the rising sun. 

Tasmania Governor Flag: The Governor of Tasmania flag features the Blue ensign with Union Jack and a lion peasant badge. 

Western Australia Governor Flag: The Western Australia has a black swan badge that is associated with the Swan River. 

Important Protocols of Australian Flag 

There are some important Australian flag protocols that need to be followed by everyone while using or flying the national flag.

  • The national flag must be treated with respect and dignity.
  • The flag should never be raised earlier than the first light and lowered later than dusk.
  • The flag should be illuminated with light when flown at night.
  • Two flags should not be flown from the same flagpole.
  • When the national flag of Australia is flown with other nation’s flags, all flags and flagpoles should be of the same size and height.
  • It should be raised first and lowered last when flown with other flags.
  • The damaged and faded flag should never not be used.
  • The national flag of Australia can not be used in the curtain or cover table designs.
  • The national flag of Australia can be used over the coffins at funerals.
  • The half mast flag is the sign of national mourning.

The order of precedence of flying the flags is as follow:

  • National Flag of Australia 
  • Other Nation’s National Flags 
  • The other States and Territory Flags
  • Aboriginal Flag and Torres Strait Islander Flag, or other Flags as per 1953 Act.

National Anthem of Australia 

The National Anthem of a country is the expression of unity, pride, and joy. Likewise, the anthem of Australia has its importance and is sung on special occasions. 

“Australians all let us rejoice

For we are young and free

We've golden soil and wealth for toil

Our home is girt by sea

Our land abounds in nature's gifts

Of beauty, rich and rare

In history's page let every stage

Advance Australia fair

In joyful strains then let us sing

Advance Australia fair

Beneath our radiant Southern Cross

We'll toil with hearts and hands

To make this Commonwealth of ours

Renowned of all the lands

For those who've across the seas

We've boundless plains to share

With courage let us all combine

To advance Australia fair

In joyful strains then let us sing

Advance Australia fair”