- PRATIQUE FLAG
- See ‘quarantine flag’.
- PRAYER FLAG
- A small, sometimes triangular flag, often used in groups and decorated with inscriptions, intended
to express a prayer as it flies – characteristic of Hinduism, Buddhists in the Himalayan
region and of a related Chinese sect (see also ‘dhvarja’,
Hindu and Chinese Buddhist Prayer Flags (fotw)
- The system often regulated by law, of placing flags, emblems or coats of arms
for a display or ceremony in order of importance – for more details see
‘rules of etiquette’ and
‘position of honour’ (also
‘flag code’ and
- A term that relates to European flags which do not contain any elements derived
from heraldry and/or which pre-date the introduction of heraldic symbolism. (see also
- PREPARATIVE (or PREPARATIVE FLAG/PENNANT)
- In British RN usage and in some others, the signal flag hoisted before a message
is sent and hauled down after that message has been completed (see also ‘hoist 2)’
flag’) – a telegraph flag – but see note below (also ‘code pennant’ with its following note
and and ‘distinction pennant’).
Preparatives: Howe’s Code of 1790, UK; Popham’s Code of 1799, UK; Marryat’s Commercial Service Code of 1817, UK; Naval Code of 1889, UK; Current Naval Code, UK/NATO
Please note that this flag was originally introduced in Howe’s code of 1790 to indicate that the following message was not to be obeyed immediately, but only when the preparatory was again raised and lowered, and that in Popham’s code of 1799 it was hoisted to indicate whether the following flags were to be deciphered using a signal book or by vocabulary code.
Also please note that it remains unclear whether the preparative in Popham’s Code was divided per bend, or per bend sinister as illustrated above.
- PRESIDENTIAL (or PRESIDENT’S) COLOUR (or COLOR)
- 1) See ‘colour 2)’ and
- 2) In largely US usage, a term for the distinguishing flag of a president
when displayed indoors or on parade (see
‘presidential standard’ below).
- PREPARATORY FLAG
- Flag P (Papa) in the International Code of Signal Flags hoisted to indicate
the imminent start of a yacht or dinghy race (see also ‘blue peter’,
‘international code of signal flags’ and
Signal Flag P (Papa) (CS)
- PRESIDENTIAL DECREE
- In republican usage the legal means by which a head of state authorizes display of a flag or the
amendment of an established design, and the equivalent to a US Executive Order or Royal Order in Council –
see ‘executive order’ and
‘royal order in council 2)’
(also ‘flag law’)
- PRESIDENTIAL SASH
- See ‘sash 1)’.
Presidential Sash of Colombia (fotw)
- PRESIDENTIAL STANDARD (or FLAG)
- That flag which symbolizes the office of president in a republican system
of government, often (but no means exclusively) a defaced or decorated version of the national flag (see
also ‘deface 1)’,
‘national flag’ and
Presidential Standard of USA (fotw); Presidential Standard
of Chile (fotw); Presidential Flag of
Russia (fotw); Presidential Standard of
- PRIAPIC IN ITS VIRILITY
- A phrase sometimes used in heraldic blazoning when the male member of an animal is shown erect and in
a different tincture to its body – villené, vilene or viriled (see also
Flag of Appenzell, Switzerland (fotw)
- PRINCELY BONNET (CORONET or HAT)
- See ‘coronet 2)’.
National Flag of Liechtenstein bearing a Princely Bonnet (fotw)
- PRINCEFLAG (PRINCE FLAG, PRINCE’S FLAG, PRINSENVLAG or PRINZENVLAG)
- The name originally applied to the orange-white-blue horizontal tricolour that was the first
pattern of Dutch national flag, the driekleur, and in use from c1575 – c1654/1660 – the prinsenvlag
or prinzenvlag (see also
‘Dutch colours 1)’,
National Flag of the Netherlands c1575 – c1654/1660 (CS)
Please note, evidence indicates that until the late 18th
Century the terms prinsenflag or prinzenvlag were sometimes also applied to the
- PRIVATE SHIP
- In British RN and some other naval usage, a vessel in commission that does
not fly the flag of a flag officer or broad pennant of a commodore (see also
‘flag of command’,
‘masthead pennant 1)’).
- PRIVATE SIGNAL
- 1) See ‘call sign’ and
‘call sign hoist’.
- 2) See ‘house flag 3)’.
- 3) A naval term, now obsolete, for a confidential signal used by ships of
the same navy to verify each other's identity (see also
‘make her number’ and
- The term for a merchant vessel, or for the crew of such a vessel, holding a licence (or letter of marque)
from its government which entitled that vessel, or its crew, to attack the property of those countries
with whom they were at war - a practice now obsolete - corsair(s) - see
‘privateer ensign’ and ‘privateer jack’.
Please note that possession of a letter of marque (and/or reprisal) also entitled
the holder and/or his crew to be treated as prisoners of war rather than face execution
if captured - which was (and in some cases still is) the legal punishment for piracy on
the high seas (see also ‘jolly roger 1))’).
- PRIVATEER (or PRIVATEERING) ENSIGN
- In Spanish usage and some others, now obsolete, a special ensign prescribed for vessels engaged
in privateering – a corsair ensign – see ‘privateer(s)’ and
‘privateering jack’ (also
‘ensign 1)’ and
‘jolly roger 1)’).
Privateer Ensign, Spain 1820 (fotw); Privateer Ensign Proposal 1819, Austria-Hungary (Fame)
- PRIVATEER (or PRIVATERING) JACK
- In UK usage, now obsolete, a special jack prescribed for vessels engaged in privateering and flown
from 1694 until 1856 – the distinction jack
or budgee jack see ‘privateer(s)’
and ‘privateer ensign’ (also
‘union jack 2)’).
Privateer Jack Until 1801, UK (CS); Privateer Jack 1801 – 1856, UK (fotw and CS)
- PRIZE FLAG
- A special flag flown by a yacht that has won a race (see also ‘preparatory flag’ and ‘racing flag’).
- PROCESSIONAL BANNER
- See ‘banner 3)’.
- The heraldic term used when a charge or figure is shown in its natural shape and colours, as
opposed to stylised heraldic colours or shapes (see also ‘appendix III’
and ‘appendix V’)
Flag of American Samoa (fotw); National Arms of Fiji (fotw)
- 1) The relationship between the width and length of a flag, usually expressed
in that order that is, for example 1:2, but sometimes also in the reverse or 2:1
– the ratio or aspect ratio (see also dimensions',
- 2) The relative dimensions of two or more stripes or bands within a flag,
(whether disposed vertically horizontally or diagonally) - internal proportions
(see also ‘optical proportions’ and
- PROTEST BANNER
- See ‘banner 3)’ (also
‘political flag 2)’).
- PROTEST FLAG
- See political flag 2)’.
- PROVINCIAL CROWN
1) Specifically, the term – and an adaptation of the Italian corona per il titolo
di provincia – that may be used to describe a plain-topped coronet with crossed
branches (of foliage) running through it, which is seen on many Italian provincial
arms/gonfalone – an Italian provincial crown (see also
‘gonfalon 1)’ and
2) Generically, the term may also be used to describe a coronet of any pattern,
when such appears ensigned above the arms of a province – see
Provincial Crown from the Arms and Gonfalon of Agrigento Province, Italy (Wikipedia)
- PROVINCIAL ARMS (or COAT OF ARMS)
- See ‘state arms 3)’ under ‘arms’.
Arms of the
Province of British Columbia, Canada (Govt.
- PROVINCIAL FLAG
- See ‘sub-national flag’ and
‘state flag 2)’.
Flag of the
Province of British Columbia, Canada (fotw)
- PROVINCIAL WIMPEL (or PENNANT)
- In Scandinavian usage, a long, trapezoidal wimpel or pennant, usually in the relevant
provincial livery colours and often flown from domestic flagpoles to indicate that the owner
is in residence – a husband pennant - but see ‘wimpel 1)’
(also ‘livery colours’ and
The Provincial Wimpel of the Aland Islands (fotw)
- See ‘fictitious flag’ (also
- PULLDOWN (or PULL-DOWN)
- In US usage a flag (or bunting in flag colours) that is displayed flat against
a wall for decoration - an advertising pulldown (see also
- See ‘sheaved block’.
- PUMPOUT ALERT (REQUEST or REQUIRED) PENNANT
- In US maritime, lake and inland waterway usage, the term for a pennant (of
regulated design and possibly made from non-flexible material), which may now be
displayed to indicate that a leisure vessel requires the waste disposal service
introduced by various Clean Vessel Acts – but see ‘pumpout flag’
Regulated Design of the Pumpout Alert Pennant (CS)
- PUMPOUT FLAG (or PENNANT)
- In US maritime, lake and inland waterway usage, the term for a flag or pennant
(of regulated design) that is flown in accordance with various Clean Vessel Acts to
indicate the location or availability of a toilet waste disposal service for leisure
vessels - see ‘pumpout alert pennant’.
Regulated Designs for the Pumpout Flag, Symbol and pennant (official website)
- A heraldic term for the colour purple (see also
‘Appendix III’ and
‘rule of tincture’).
- PUSHPIT FLAG STAFF
- A 19th Century term, now almost certainly obsolete, for the stern mounted ensign staff
of a sailing yacht (see also ‘ensign staff’).
Please note that pushpit (also called a stern pulpit) is nautical
slang for that railing which encloses the stern of a sailing yacht.