Top 10 Flags that Were Used or Adopted Before 1800

Basically, this list is about the oldest flags and it was supposed to be an objective list.

But I changed my mind because the sources I checked out were giving different flags and dates, and there were too many contradictions. It was impossible to make an "objective" list.

The sources were also using different criteria which resulted in different dates (for example, Year the flag was adopted VS Year the the flag was first used VS Continuously used). Oh, and the sources usually had less than 10 flags on their lists but I can't submit a list here with less than 10 items.

So I did my own research based on information from wiki. I ranked the flags from the oldest to the newest but you can vote for the flag you like, country you like, or whatever you want.

The Top Ten

1 Denmark (adopted 1219 or earlier) Denmark is a Scandinavian country in Europe. The southernmost of the Nordic countries, it is south-west of Sweden and south of Norway, and bordered to the south by Germany.

One of the most beautiful flags to look at. I just love that look of it - darthvadern

Denmark flag also holds the Guinness World Record for Oldest continuously used national flag - been continuously used since 1625. - Metal_Treasure

2 Austria (first used 1230) Austria was Celtic (Hallstadt) then as Noricum, part of the Roman Empire, Alaric, who took over Rome, studied at a monastery near Vienna. In the Middle Ages, the Holy Roman Emperors moved to Vienna, then Austria became separate. Medieval documents from Eastern Europe as far as West Ukraine were often more.

I really, really love that shade of red. And I'm a fan of red-white flags so there's that as well - darthvadern

It was adopted in 1918 - Metal_Treasure

3 Latvia (first used 1280) Latvia, officially the Republic of Latvia, is a country in the Baltic region of Northern Europe, one of the three Baltic states.

Very similar to austrian flag but slightly uniquer. I've actually been here and the flag kinda explained the country itself. It looks a bit rough, like the roads in Latvia - darthvadern

It was adopted in 1991 - Metal_Treasure

4 Netherlands (first used 1410)

I generally like horisontall flags more than vertical. So yes I think this one's better than France's - darthvadern

It was adopted in 1572 - it's among the first adopted flags ever, 3rd after Denmark (1219) and Scotland (1542). - Metal_Treasure

5 Albania (first used 1443) Albania is a southeastern European country that is slightly larger than Maryland and near Montenegro, Kosovo, Republic of Macedonia, and Greece. The capital is a city called Tirana. Some other major cities in Albania are Durrës, Elbasan, Vlorë, and Shkodër. Albania gained its independence in 1912. more.

Looks pretty scary to be honest, kinda like it has a face. Looks mischeavous and sorta evil - darthvadern

This flag design was first used in 1443 but it was adopted in 1912 - Metal_Treasure

6 Switzerland (first used 1470) Switzerland, officially the Swiss Confederation, is a federal republic in Europe. It consists of 26 cantons, and the city of Bern is the seat of the federal authorities. more.

Found a pattern here:

Switzerland: The "plus" flag
Austria: The "minus" flag (kinda) - darthvadern

It was adopted in 1889 - Metal_Treasure

7 Nepal (1743) Nepal, officially the Federal Democratic Republic of Nepal, is a sovereign state located in South Asia. more.

The uniquest flag in the world along with the old libyan flag, considering they're the only ones of their kind - darthvadern

The current flag design was first used in 1743 and adopted the same year. - Metal_Treasure

8 Scotland Saltire (adopted 15th century) Scotland is a country that is part of the United Kingdom and covers the northern third of the island of Great Britain. Scotland is the most mountainous, and least densely populated country in the United Kingdom.

Not as good as the welsh flag but very pretty as well - darthvadern

No longer an independent country but still a classic flag.

The first certain illustration of this flag appeared circa 1542 in Register of Scottish Arms by Sir David Lyndsay of the Mount.
Before that the flag appeared with a red background circa 1503 in the Vienna Book of Hours, which is the earliest reference to the Saint Andrew's Cross as a flag. - Metal_Treasure

9 Sweden (first used 1562 or earlier) Sweden, officially the Kingdom of Sweden, is a Scandinavian country in Northern Europe. more.

Yeah I love my flag. It looks so happy and classic in my opinion - darthvadern

It was adopted in 1906 when they removed the Union mark of Norway and Sweden - Metal_Treasure

10 Spain (first used 1785) Spain, officially the Kingdom of Spain, is a sovereign state largely located on the Iberian Peninsula in southwestern Europe, with archipelagos in the Atlantic Ocean and Mediterranean Sea, and several small territories on and near the north African coast.

Spain certainly has a cool flag. It's one of my lesser favourite european flags but I still like it - darthvadern

Current flag version was adopted in 1981 but the original version, as naval and coastal fortifications' flag, was adopted in 1785 - Metal_Treasure

The Contenders

11 San Marino (first used 1797) San Marino, officially the Republic of San Marino, also known as the Most Serene Republic of San Marino, is an enclaved microstate surrounded by Italy, situated on the Italian Peninsula on the northeastern side of the Apennine Mountains.

That jewel in the middle looks awesome - darthvadern

It was adopted in 1862 - Metal_Treasure

12 Italy (first used 1796, with Napoleon I) Italy, in italian Repubblica Italiana, is a unitary parliamentary republic in Europe. more.

Green-white-red patterns are awesome in my opinion - darthvadern

Adopted in 1946 (modified in 2006) - Metal_Treasure

13 France (first used 1794, naval ensign) France, officially the French Republic, is a sovereign state comprising territory in western Europe and several overseas regions and territories. The European part of France, called metropolitan France, extends from the Mediterranean Sea to the English Channel and the North Sea, and from the Rhine to more.

Those shades of blue and red look very "tasty" and pretty somehow - darthvadern

France adopted it in 1830 and it hasn't been changed since then - Metal_Treasure

14 Russia (first used 1700) Russia, known as the "Russian Federation", was formed on Dec 25, 1991. It is located mainly in Asia, while a portion of it remains in Europe. The capital and largest city is Moscow, followed by Saint Petersburg in terms of population. The country primarily speaks Russian, a Slavic language. more.

I love it - darthvadern

It was adopted in 1991, after the collapse of the communist regime and the USSR - Metal_Treasure

15 Morocco (first used 1244)

One of the only african countries with a flag adopted way before than other african countries - darthvadern

It was adopted in 1915.
I didn't put Morocco higher because the year 1244 is disputed. But Morocco still belongs in this list because from 1795-1915 they used the closest version to their current flag - red background with a green star (only the shape of the star was slightly different: the Seal of Solomon was replaced by a green pentagram). - Metal_Treasure

16 Tonga (first used 1674, as English Red Ensign) Tonga, officially the Kingdom of Tonga, is a Polynesian sovereign state and archipelago comprising 169 islands of which 36 are inhabited.

Switzerland but colours are reversed, and the flag has been moved to the top-left corner. It's good - darthvadern

Tonga adopted it in 1875 and hasn't changed it - Metal_Treasure

17 Sicily (first adopted in 1282)

Yeah this one's weird. The head is in the place of..., yeah you know what - darthvadern

It's also one of the weirdest flags ever - Metal_Treasure

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