Flag bunting was employed as a form of military communication where flags were used to convey messages. Military bunting was created in the early 1800s and became a popular way of communicating from ship to shore or ship to ship. Bunting is still a colorful tradition, and companies use it to decorate events, properties, and ceremonies.
1. The Origin of the Word Bunting
The word bunting hails from the Dutch word bont, which translates to multi-colored. The Dutch were known for having colorful and elaborate flags. For a long period, the Dutch used decorative fabric to create banners used for bunting and incorporated this colorful design into their national flag. A tammy, in contrast, is an individual triangular flag that makes up part of the entire bunting flag. This word is derived from the French word estamet, which means lightweight wool fabric.
2. Bunting Flags Were Commonly Used By Ships in the 18th and 19th Centuries
Before the advent of radio and other modes of communication, ships communicated using flags. Flags were tied to the masts of vessels and could be used to communicate with other ships from a distance. These flags were hoisted onto a line or halyard with appropriate codes for other ships to read. The vessel for which the message was intended would then use a codebook to interpret the message and reply. In addition to ship-to-ship communication, bunting flags were also used for ship-to-shoreline and ship-to-aircraft communication. The common messages conveyed by bunting flags were distress signals to ensure safe navigation, instructions to proceed to a certain destination, and also military messages such as declaring war.
3. The Use of Bunting Flags in Sports Dates Back to the 19th Century
Sports bunting is a term that alludes to the use of bunting flags as a form of decoration and fan support in sports. Team colors are typically used for sports bunting. However, these flags can also encourage fans involved in various sports to show support. Sports bunting is used frequently in football, soccer, and athletics. They are also used for decoration.
4. Flag Bunting Has Symbolic Meaning
Bunting flags are held in high esteem because of their symbolic meaning. The rows of triangular-shaped flags that constitute the entire bunting flag represent a pennant closely associated with nobility.
5. Bunting Was Used as a Mourning Decoration
Bunting was also used in funerals and post-funeral celebrations to display mourning. Funerals have always been and are still an important part of the human experience to honor those who have passed away. As a form of remembrance, flags are hoisted at half-staff to show respect and honor lost loved ones. These flags are also placed on coffins to say goodbye to the departed.
Bunting is a colorful and dynamic way of displaying identity and expressing emotion for many. Sports, military, and celebration are just some of the applications of bunting flags. Bunting is an important part of many people’s lives, whether they are in an extreme sporting event or they are mourning the passing of their loved one.