Last modified: 2011-06-10 by eugene ipavec
Keywords: royal | king | coat of arms: quartered (castle: yellow) | coat of arms: quartered (lion: red) | cross: saltire (red) | cross: burgundy | order of the golden fleece |
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image by Luis Miguel Arias, 23 Jan 2006
Adopted 13 March 1867, disused 1868-1874, abolished 1931
A nice picture of the 1867-1931 royal standard as used by King Alphonse XIII (1886-1931) is shown at the Naval Museum website.
Please note that the field of the flag is larger than the picture, i.e. the arms did not occupy such a large proportion of the field.
Santiago Dotor, 09 Feb 2005
The royal standard, a square purple flag with the greater royal arms, was legally adopted in the Instruction on insignia and flags, honours and salutes (Instrucción sobre insignias y banderas, honores y saludos) of 13 March 1867 and was kept in use (except for the period 1868-1874) until the second Republic was proclaimed. Calvo and Grávalos 1983 [cag83] says it was used without legal support from 1833 to 1867, but gives no sources, making such a statement doubtful.
This royal standard was used by the Kings and Queen of Spain, the Princes and Princesses of Asturias, the King's children (Infantes and Infantas of Spain) and the consorts of all of them. A Royal Decree of 1 March 1893 created a royal standard with the same elements but swallowtailed to be used by the Infantes and Infantas of Spain and their consorts, leaving the square royal standard for the other members of the royal family.
The use of both standards was always to indicate the presence of a royal authority on board a Navy vessel.
Luis Miguel Arias, 23 Jan 2006
May I add that it is not yet clear why was the traditional red colour of Spanish royal standards changed to purple. Some authors mention this was a mistake in the production of the actual standard, later perpetuated by the 1867 law.
Santiago Dotor, 23 Jan 2006
Could the adoption of purple have been the result of a decision, as likely to have been unofficial as official, to imitate the ancient color of the Roman Emperors? After all, purple has been considered as a royal, if not an imperial, color since at least that time.
Ron Lahav, 23 Jan 2006