On the British Union Jack flag, white represents peace and honesty; red represents hardiness, bravery, strength and valor; and blue represents vigilance, truth, loyalty, perseverance and justice. The term "Union Jack" refers to the flag being a union between three national flags. A "jack" is a small flag flown on a ship's bowsprit, which was the first place the Union Jack was commonly displayed.Know More
The Union Jack is composed of the flags of three patron saints layered one over the other. The central red cross on a white field is the flag of St. George, the patron saint of England. Beneath this, the white X (or "cross saltire," in heraldic terminology) on a blue field represents St. Andrew for Scotland. Layered and slightly offset on the white cross saltire is the red cross saltire representing Ireland's St. Patrick.
The first version of the Union Jack dates to James I's accession to the British throne upon the death of Queen Elizabeth I. Because his crowning represented the first time England and Scotland had been united under one ruler, James also changed the national flag to blend England's and Scotland's flags to create the first British flag, called the Union Flag. In 1801, Ireland was officially added to the British Empire, creating the United Kingdom, and the Irish flag was incorporated into the Union Jack.Learn More
The gargoyles on Notre Dame cathedral were built as water spouts to prevent damage to the masonry by deflecting rainwater from the sides of the building. After the installation of drain pipes in the 16th century, the gargoyles were merely ornamental.Full Answer >
Guy Fawkes was an English citizen who became a soldier in the Spanish army. He is best known for his role in the Gunpowder Conspiracy, an attempt to destroy the British Parliament.Full Answer >
The cost to ride on the Titanic varied depending on the type of ticket, but first-class tickets were $2,500 and third-class tickets were $40. In modern currency, these prices would be $103,000 and $900, respectively.Full Answer >
The fundamental purposes of the European Union are to promote greater social, political and economic harmony among the nations of Western Europe. The EU reasons that nations whose economies are interdependent are less likely to engage in conflict. These goals are pursued through the unification of European markets under a single currency, the Euro, and through sets of legal standards to which all prospective and member nations, are held. Supranational institutions work with national governments to govern the implementation of these standards and help the EU to act as a unified body on the world stage.Full Answer >