The national flag of Ireland has three vertical stripes with the colors of green (at the hoist), white, and orange. As such, it’s often known as the tricolor. The green is said to represent the Gaelic tradition, the orange is for supporters of William of Orange, and the white in the center signifies a lasting truce between the green and the orange; thus living in peace.
The flag was previously the flag of the Irish Free State and it was adopted in 1919 unilaterally during the war of independence by the Irish Republic. Subsequently, the Irish Free State also adopted the flag and later it was given constitutional status in 1937 by the Constitution of Ireland. Many nationalists feel the flag is the national flag of Ireland and as such is flown (controversially) in Northern Ireland by nationalists and the Gaelic Athletic Association.
Some protocols for the Irish Flag
- The flag should never touch the ground, trail in water, or become tangled in any obstacles.
- When the flag has become worn or frayed, it should no longer be used.
- It should be displayed in the open only between sunrise and sunset, except for its use during certain events and then only for the duration of the vent.
- The flag should never be defaced.
- It should always be treated with respect.
- The flag should not be draped on cars, trains, boats, or other modes of transportation.
- It should not be carried flat, rather it should be aloft and free; except when used to drape a coffin.
It is the general practice to fly the national flag daily at all military posts and from a restricted number of significant state buildings. The European flag is flown alongside the national flag on all official buildings and in most locations where the Irish flag is flown over buildings. The national flag is often flown at half-mast on the death of a national or international figure on all prominent government buildings equipped with a flag pole. When the national flag is flown at half-mast, no other flag should be flown at half-mast.