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union jack

a jack consisting of the union of a national flag or ensign, as the U.S. jack, which has the white stars and blue field of the union of the U.S. national flag.
(often initial capital letter) the British national flag.
any flag the overall design of which is a union.
Origin of union jack
1665-75 Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2016.
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Examples from the Web for union-jack
Historical Examples
  • A tar was at hand to climb the loftiest palm, to strip its bushy head, and hoist the union-jack.

    Captain Canot Brantz Mayer
  • Every one had a share in a union-jack pocket-handkerchief, which they were very proud of.

  • Crest / an American or spread-eagle bearing the union-jack displayed, over all a sun in splendour which never sets.

    "Mr Punch's" Book of Arms Edward Tennyson Reed
  • The national flag is composed of coloured stripes with the union-jack of old England quartered in the corner.

    Captain Cook W.H.G. Kingston
  • The British union-jack is coming down from the blockhouse, and the Stars and Stripes are going up.

    The Niagara River Archer Butler Hulbert
  • This day the ship was dressed with flags from stem to stern, and chiefest of the bunting was the union-jack.

    From Sea to Sea Rudyard Kipling
  • Also it is simon-pure British, and more like Natal in this respect than any other territory under the union-jack.

    An African Adventure Isaac F. Marcosson
  • Go, take charge of our vessel, and send me twenty of the best men of our crew fully armed—also a British union-jack.

    The Pirate City R.M. Ballantyne
  • If you please, can you tell us anything about the union-jack?

  • It is formed of the British union-jack, with alternate blue, red, and white stripes.

    A Voyage round the World W.H.G. Kingston
British Dictionary definitions for union-jack

Union Jack

a common name for Union flag
(often not capitals) a national flag flown at the jackstaff of a vessel
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for union-jack

Union Jack

1670s, from union + jack (n.); properly a small British union flag flown as the jack of a ship, but it has long been in use as a general name for the union flag. The Union flag (1630s) was introduced to symbolize the union of the crowns of England and Scotland (in 1603) and was formed of a combination of the cross saltire of St. Andrew and the cross of St. George. The cross saltire of St. Patrick was added 1801 upon the union of parliaments of Great Britain and Ireland.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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