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Royal Canadian Artillery

Last modified: 2015-06-30 by rob raeside
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[Royal Canadian Artillery flag] image by William L. Houle

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Royal Canadian Artillery

Here is a flag that we use in my Regiment. Please note that this is not the colours, but our guns are our colours.

Battle Honours:

For their presence meritorious service at almost every battle, the Artillery of Britain, Canada, Australia and New Zealand bear the single battle honour UBIQUE . All Gunners belong to the same Regiment, and honours won by any reflect on all.

UBIQUE (Everywhere)
QUO FAS ET GLORIA DUCUNT (Where Right and Glory Lead)

The Royal crest are on a stamp on the top of the gun. with the word Ubique.
William L. Houle, 08 August 2000


The Royal Regiment of Canadian Artillery

The Royal Regiment of Canadian Artillery has two mottoes: "Ubique" (Everywhere) and "Quo Fas et Gloria Ducunt" (Whither Right and Glory Lead). These may be borne on regimental appointments. The first motto "Ubique", takes the place of all battle honours in recognition of the artillery's service in all battles and campaigns.

In 1832, King William IV of England granted the Royal Regiment of Artillery the right to wear on their appointments the royal arms and supporters over a cannon with the motto, "Ubique Quo Fas et Gloria Ducunt" (Everywhere Whither Right and Glory Lead). The next year (1833), the order was amended to make clear that "Ubique" and "Quo Fas et Gloria Ducunt" were two separate mottoes. The Canadian Artillery was authorized to wear on its appointments the same royal arms and the motto "Quo Fas et Gloria Ducunt", plus the word "Canada". After the First World War, when the issue of battle honours was being decided, the RCA asked permission to use "Ubique" in place of "Canada" in recognition of distinguished overseas service in all campaigns. This was approved by King George V on 5 August 1926, and promulgated by G042/1927 the next year.

Royal Canadian Horse Artillery units are distinguished by the presence of the Royal Cypher on their regimental flags. The motto on the cypher is "Honi soit qui mal y pense" ("Evil be to him who evil thinks"). This is the motto of the Order of the Garter; it is not an artillery motto.

History of the Royal Regiment of Canadian Artillery

The Royal Regiment of Canadian Artillery is older than Canada itself. The first company of artillery to be formed in Canada was organized in Quebec in 1750. The Regiment has always been formed from two important components - the regular force and the reserve force. Both regular force and reserve force gunners have fought in every war in which Canada has participated. Canadian gunners have played an important part in the lives of many Canadian communities and in the history of Canada.

The Militia Act of 1855 authorized the first Canadian paid force of 5,000 men. This force included seven independent batteries of artillery. Three of the original seven batteries are perpetuated by reserve force batteries today. Prior to 1855, volunteer Canadian artillery batteries existed but the continuity of some of these batteries is difficult to trace. One of these pre-1855 units, the "Loyal Company of Artillery", was formed in Saint John, N.B., in 1793, and is perpetuated today by the 3rd Field Artillery Regiment RCA.

The regular component of the Regiment was formed on 20 October 1871 when two batteries of garrison artillery, A and B Batteries, were authorized and located at Kingston and Quebec respectively. These batteries were to perform garrison duties and also to serve as "Schools of Gunnery". A and B Batteries are the oldest regular component of the Canadian Forces having served continuously as "regulars" since their formation. They serve today as part of 1st Regiment Royal Canadian Horse Artillery (RCHA).

Titles of the Royal Regiment of Canadian Artillery

Queen Victoria, as a special honour on the occasion of her birthday in 1893, conferred the title "Royal" on the artillery of the Permanent Militia of Canada, whose title thus became "The Royal Canadian Artillery". The entire Regiment was redesignated "The Royal Regiment of Canadian Artillery" on 29 October 1956. The official abbreviation is RCA. It should be noted that the word "The" in the full title is always capitalized.

These titles exist in both official languages as: "The Royal Regiment of Canadian Artillery / Le Régiment royal de l'artillerie canadienne"; "Royal Canadian Artillery / Artillerie royale canadienne"; and "RCA/ARC".

The designation Royal Canadian Horse Artillery was first adopted in Canada in 1905 when 13-pounder guns were purchased for the regular force artillery units. Since then, Royal Canadian Horse Artillery units have been found in the regular component of The Royal Regiment of Canadian Artillery. In 1952-53, it was decided that all close support artillery regiments of the regular force would be units of the RCHA and all other artillery units would be RCA. This decision was reconfirmed in 1967. Thus when the 5e Régiment d'artillerie légère du Canada (5 RALC) was formed, it became a unit of the RCHA.

All Regular Force gun batteries and those Regular Force air defence batteries that are part of RCHA regiments are lettered. All other batteries are numbered.

William L. Houle, 09 August 2000

Royal Artillery Standard

[Royal Canadian Artillery standard]
by William L. Houle

The tapering flag is a Royal Artillery Standard introduced in 1947. Designed by Sir Gerald Wollaston, Garter King of Arms, Inspector of Regimental Colours at the College of Arms, and approved by KGVI. Flown at HQ of RA Regiments and batteries and by independent RA units. Variations from the basic pattern authorised, in that traditional crests, badges, formation signs etc may be placed on the Standard. In William's example that is the Maple Leaf in the first panel after the badge. The "grenade" between the motto is part of the basic design. Details in Standards, Guidons and Colours of the Commonwealth Forces by T.J. Edwards.

I think that the rectangular flag would be called a Regimental Flag and has the same use. Consists of the badge set on the colours of the RA dress uniform, blue with scarlet facings.
David Prothero, 10 August 2000