The Union Jack Flag appears in the canton of the flags of several nations and territories that are former British possessions or dominions, as well as in the flag of the US State of Hawaii, which has no such connection.
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Whether the term Union Jack applies only when used as a jack flag on a ship is a matter of debate.
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Union Jack came to be used to identify all manner of particularly small objects or small versions of larger ones.
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Notwithstanding Their Lordships' circular of 1902, by 1913 the Admiralty described the "Union Flag" and added in a footnote that 'A Jack is a Flag to be flown only on the "Jack" Staff'.
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Size and power of the Royal Navy internationally at the time could explain why the flag was named the "Union Jack"; considering the navy was so widely utilised and renowned by the United Kingdom and colonies, it is possible that the term jack occurred because of its regular use on all British ships using the jackstaff.
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Union Jack is normally twice as long as it is tall, a ratio of 1:2.
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One early proposal for the Union Jack, consisting of a white St Andrew's saltire with blue fimbriation superimposed over a red St George's cross on a field of white.
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At the suggestion of the Scots representatives, the designs for consideration included that version of Union Jack showing the Cross of Saint Andrew uppermost; identified as being the "Scotts union flagg as said to be used by the Scotts".
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Union Jack Flag is worn at the masthead of a ship to indicate the presence of the Sovereign or an Admiral of the Fleet.
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Union Jack Flag is flown at half mast from the announcement of the death of the Sovereign, or upon command of the Sovereign.
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Union Jack is the national flag of the British Overseas Territories, which are parts of the British realm with varying degrees of local autonomy.
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Outside the UK, the Union Jack is usually part of a special ensign in which it is placed in the upper left hand corner of a blue field, with a signifying crest in the bottom right.
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The Union Jack was to be flown alongside the National Flag at the Houses of Parliament, from the principal government buildings in the capitals, at Union ports, on government offices abroad, and at such other places as the government might determine.
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However, the meaning behind the use of the flags by pro-democracy protestors, including the Union Jack Flag, remains disputed with protestors citing a variety of reasons for flying it.
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In former British colonies, the Union Jack was used interchangeably with informal flags of the territory for significant parts of their colonial early history.
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Basque Country's flag, the Ikurrina, is loosely based on the Union Jack, reflecting the significant commercial ties between Bilbao and Britain at the time the Ikurrina was designed in 1894.
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Flag of the Chilean city of Coquimbo features the Union Jack, owing to its historical commercial links to Britain.
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In 1970, the white-bordered Union Flag ceased to be the signal for a pilot, but references to it as national colours were not removed from the current Merchant Shipping Act and it was legally interpreted as a flag that could be flown on a merchant ship, as a jack if desired.
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Union Jack remains one of the most instantly-recognisable flags in the world.
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