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Title: The battle standard (flag) with the image of the Immaculate Conception
Authors: Mercieca, Simon
Muscat, Joseph
Keywords: Malta -- History -- Knights of Malta, 1530-1798
Privateering -- Malta -- History
Naval tactics
Naval ceremonies, honors, and salutes
Communications, Military
Issue Date: 2012
Publisher: Busan University of Foreign Studies. Institute for Mediterranean Studies
Citation: Mercieca, S., & J. Muscat (2012). The battle standard (flag) with the image of the Immaculate Conception. Mediterranean Review, 5(1), 45-74.
Abstract: When maritime communications lacked the sophisticated technologies of today, seafarers had to conceive signals so that they could communicate with each other at sea. Flags were one aspect of the code language in use during early-modem times all over the Mediterranean Sea. Flags were not only used to denote the nationality or religion of the owner of the vessel but also as signals, in particular when ships sailed in convoy or squadron formation. A successful encounter at sea depended on good coordination. For this reason, a particular flag was devised to be used in time of battle. It was known as the battle standard, and was raised to signal the beginning of combat. This article focuses on this particular flag and explores its use by both Christians and Muslims. Particular reference is made to the battle flags used by the Knights of Malta. The General of the Knights' galley squadron adopted a personal battle standard and, more often than not, chose to have the iconography of the Immaculate Conception depicted on this flag in what might be interpreted as an invocation for protection and victory.
ISSN: 2005083651
Appears in Collections:Scholarly Works - FacArtHis

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