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Ministerial and Departmental Flags (Thailand)

Last modified: 2011-07-01 by ian macdonald
Keywords: minister | prime minister | governor | department: harbour | defense | interior | harbour | stripes: 5 | mythical creature | elephant | crown: thai | anchor: fouled (blue) |
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Departmental Flags

From the Singha Beer source:

The design of most departmental flag[s] is not specified by any of the Royal Decree[s] concerning flags. In B.E.2440 [1897 AD], however, a decree was issued stipulating that the Royal Yacht's flag were to be used with the insignia of each specific department or unit, on the front in the top left hand corner. Royal permission had to be granted before anyone was allowed to use the flag.

In B.E.2460 [1917 AD], the year the "Trairanga" became the National flag following a special Royal Decree, all departmental flags adopted the design of the "Trairanga", but with the Insign[i]a of each department in the middle. This was carried out in accordance with a special Royal command which was published in the Royal Gazette.

Santiago Dotor, 12 Nov 1999

The governmental departments adopted different flags after the Second World War and I am not sure whether the national flag with emblem adopted for the departments in 1917 are now back in use.

Jaume Ollé, 17 Aug 1997

Flag on State Buildings

[Flag on State Buildings (Thailand)]
image by Jaume Ollé

Minister of Defense

[Minister of Defense Flag (Thailand)] 5:6
image by Miles Li

2:3 White flag with Ministry emblem. Emblem consists of a dark blue anchor set though a red chakra with light blue wings all crowned with a yellow Thai royal crown. It's shown in Flaggenbuch with minor differences in artistic layout of the emblem, in ratio 5:6. Source: Album 2000

Željko Heimer, 30 Mar 2003

Minister of Defence flag. Source: Flaggenbuch; Flags of All Nations. Badge from Thai Ministry of Defense site.

Miles Li, 25 Oct 2005

Ministry of Foreign Affairs

[Ministry of Foreign Affairs (Thailand)] 2:3
image by Eugene Ipavec, 25 Sep 2007

Visible in photos on the ministry site, the flag is dark blue with a white-outline circular seal depicting a seated mythological being.

Eugene Ipavec, 25 Sep 2007

Ministry of the Interior

[Ministry of the Interior since 1917 (Thailand)] 2:3
image by Eugene Ipavec

From the Singha Beer source:

Flag of the Interior Ministry (B.E.2460) [1917 AD]
This flag is similar to the "Trairanga" except for the fact that the figure of a "Singha" standing on a yellow platform in the centre.

Santiago Dotor, 12 Nov 1999

In Sanskrit, "singha" means lion. Quoting the Novica website:

The lion-like beast, Singha, is the true king of the forest. His roar echoes to great distances, terrifying all forest animals, great and small. He stands at the entrance of the Thai temple, guarding the sacred Buddhist teachings.
The Singha is therefore very suitable as a symbol of the Ministry of the Interior, expected to guard the Thai state. The anthroponym Singh is very common in south-eastern Asia and the lion appears in the symbols of several various countries:
  • the lion is featured on the flag of Sri Lanka. In Sinhalese, "singha" means lion.
  • the seat of the government of Nepal is called Singha Durbar or "Lion's Palace."
  • "Singapore" means "Lion's Town" and uses a lion symbol.

Ivan Sache, 26 Sep 2006

Prime Minister 1939-1979

[Prime Minister 1939-1979 (Thailand)] 5:6/5:7 (?)
image by Eugene Ipavec

From the Singha Beer source:

The Prime Minister's Flag (B.E.2482) [1939 AD]
This is a white square, flag with a base measuring five-sixths of its length. In the middle stands the official state seal of the Prime Minister flanked by two creatures from Thai mythology – the "Kojasri" (a lion with an elephant's trunk) to the right, and the "Rajasri" (Lion) to the left, guarding a red chalice symbolizing democracy. Above hovers the Chakkri Crown in yellow.

This flag was first created following a special Royal Decree concerning flags, in B.E.2479 [1936 AD] – a turning point in the country's history, when Siam became a constitutional monarchy. The flag seen here was first used in B.E.2482 [1939 AD] and has been in use until B.E.2522 [1979 AD].

Santiago Dotor, 05 Nov 1999

5:7 White flag with red state seal topped with yellow Thai royal crown. Similar flag is shown also for Prime Minister, but was apparently abandoned in 1979. Source: Album 2000

Željko Heimer, 30 Mar 2003

Prime Minister according to Flaggenbuch, 1936(?)-1939

[Prime Minister 1939 (Thailand)] 5:6
image by Klaus-Michael Schneider, 07 Nov 2007

Flaggenbuch 1939 shows a white flag like the Regent's one with a 5:6 ratio, a centred escutcheon, no garuda and the two supporters described above – Kojasri and Rajasri – as Ministerpräsident. This relates better in some way to the above description, as the Singha Beer source image shows no "official state seal".

Santiago Dotor, 20 Jan 2000

Source: Flaggenbuch; edited by HQ of German navy; Berlin 1939, reprinted Zwickau 1992; p.161

Klaus-Michael Schneider, 07 Nov 2007

Minister (other than War Minister) 1939

[Other Minister 1939 (Thailand)] 5:6
image by Eugene Ipavec

Flaggenbuch 1939 also shows another similar flag to the Regent's, with a 5:6 ratio, the centred escutcheon alone and no supporters, as Staatsminister (außer Kriegsminister) or "Minister (other than War Minister)".

Santiago Dotor, 20 Jan 2000

Harbour Department 1911

[Harbour Department 1911 (Thailand)]
image by Jaume Ollé, Miles Li and Eugene Ipavec

From the Singha Beer source:

The Harbour Departmental Flag (B.E.2454) [1911 AD]
This is a red flag with a white elephant in full caparison – standing on a raised dais facing the flagpole. In the top right-hand corner is a yellow crown above a black anchor with a yellow cord dangling from it.

Santiago Dotor, 12 Nov 1999

Governor 1891-?

(Example shown: Governor of Ayudhya, 1912)
[Governor of Ayudhya 1912 (Thailand)]
image by Jaume Ollé, Miles Li and Eugene Ipavec

From the Singha Beer source:

The Governor's Flag
The Governor's Flag is a red flag with a white elephant – in full caparison – standing on a raised dais. In the top left-hand corver [sic], there is a white circle, the diameter of which is one fourth of the width of the entire flag. In the middle of the circle stands the city's coat of arms. [Like the War Ensign 1891-1917 with city coat-of-arms inside a circle on the canton and a smaller elephant, slightly offset towards the fly.]

The flag, which first made an appearance in B.E.2434 [1891 AD], was known as "The White-Elephant-on-a-Platform Flag". The version shown here is the one used in B.E.2455 [1912 AD] by the Governor of Ayudhya during the reign, of King Rama VI. Governor's flag of this type were adopted for only a short period of time before their use was discontinued.

Santiago Dotor, 05 Nov 1999