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Greece: The law on the national flag

Last modified: 2014-08-02 by ivan sache
Keywords: law |
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Law # 851, 22 December 1978
On the National Flag, War Flags and the Insignia of the President of the Republic

Article 1. The national flag

1. The national flag of Greece shall be blue and white. It shall consist of nine horizontal stripes of equal width, of which five (5) are blue and four (4) white, in such a way that the top and the bottom stripes are blue and the rest alternately white and blue.
2. On the top corner of the flag near the the flagstaff or flagpole there shall be an orthogonal white cross, whose vertical and horizontal arms are of equal length, extending to the four sides of a blue square encompassing it and covering, from top to bottom, three blue stripes and two white ones.
3. The width of the arms of the cross shall be equal to that of the stripes. The flag width to length ratio shall be two (2) to three (3); each stripe width shall measure one ninth (1/9) of the width of the whole flag.
4. The sizes of the National Flag as well as the heights of the flagstaffs and flagpoles on which the flag shall be flown, are listed on the table shown hereunder:

Size of flags

Length of flag (cm)

Width of flag (cm)

Width of stripes (cm)

Cross square side (cm)

Height of flagstaff* (m)

Length of flagpole** (m)






15 up to 18

9 up to 12






10 up to 12

7 up to 8






7 up to 9

5 up to 6






5 up to 6

3 up to 4







2 up to 2.6





















* attached to the ground
** fastened to the top of a structure (balcony or window)

5. The flagstaffs and flagpoles referred to in the previous paragraph shall be white in colour, those prescribed in § 1 of the following article shall bear an orb on top of them crowned by a white cross, both being in harmonious proportion to the height of the staff or the length of the pole. In all other cases, the flag shall bear a cylindrial curved piece on top of them, whose diameter shall be twice that of the flagpole or flagstaff and whose height shall be equal to half the diameter.
6. All flags shall be made of a suitable fabric of unfading colour, the hoisting of worn or discoloured flags or flags manufactured by impression being forbidden.
7. The supply of flags hoisted by State Services in general shall be effected by them on the basis of specifications laid down by the Minister of Interior. During the first application of the present law, the supply of flags to the said services may be undertaken by the Minister of Interior. The flags flown on the buildings of Legal Entities of Public Law, Local Government Corporations and Public Utility Corporations or Enterprises shall be manufactured in accordance with the aforesaid specifications.
Article 2. Use of the national flag

1. The national flag shall remain hoisted on its pole each day from 8:00. till sunset on the buildings of:
a) The Presidency of the Republic and the Greek Parliament
b) Ministries
c) Ambassadorial and Consular Authorities
d) Public, Municipal and Community establishments defined by decision of the Minister of the Interior
e) Educational Institutions and Establishments in general during the School term. The details regarding the raising and lowering of the flag on the buildings of these institutions shall be specified by decision of the Minister of National Education and Religion.
f) On Units, Establishments and Camps of the Army, the Navy and the Air Force.
g) On Warships.
h) On Allied Headquarters to which the staff of the Armed Forces serve.
i) On Merchant ships.
2. The National Flag can also be raised:
a) During National or Public Mourning events by individuals on houses, shops, offices, enterprises and other places intended for the exercise of a profession following a decision issued by the Minister of Interior.
b) During the staging of athletic events, meetings and ceremonies at the places designated for them, following a decision issued by the respective Prefect.

Communicated by Jos Poels, 16 June 1995

Article 3 states that (on public holidays) the flag shall fly "from 8.00 am until sunset", however, Article 6(2) says that "Whenever flag-dressing is specified as lasting more than one day, the may remain flying overnight".

Christopher Southworth, 4 April 2003

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