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Dictionary of Vexillology: C (Cable Number - Campaign)

Last modified: 2024-05-18 by rob raeside
Keywords: vexillological terms |
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A code number identifying a precise shade of colour in the system developed by the Color Association of the United States, usually associated with a specific name, and used in the official specifications of US government and military, and many state flags.

USA Wyoming Wyoming
US National Flag and Flags of the State of Wyoming, and of the State of Arkansas, US (fotw)

For example, please note that the official specification for the Stars and Stripes and some sub-national flags (as in the examples illustrated above) require: Cable No. 70180. Old Glory Red, Cable No. 70001, White and Cable No. 70075, Old Glory Blue (fotw)

The term for a charge, particularly an anchor, that is shown complete with its cable – but see ‘foul anchor’ (also ‘anchor’ and ‘charge’).

Minister of Defense - Uruguay Melide, Ticino Navy Jack - Ecuador
Flag of the Minister of Defence, Uruguay (fotw); Flag of Melide, Switzerland (fotw); Naval Jack of Ecuador (fotw)

See ‘roped cross’.

Cabled cross

Alternative heraldic terms used when an animal’s head is borne full-faced and with no part of the neck visible - cabossed or cabooched – but see ‘affronty 1)’ (also ‘guardant’).

[Garešnica, Croatia ] [Garešnica, Croatia ] [Gjesdal, Norway ]
Flag and Arms of Garešnica, Croatia (fotw); Flag of Gjesdal, Norway (fotw)

A heraldic term for the mark of difference added to an escutcheon to indicate that the bearer is heir to the owner, or a direct descendent of the family to which the primary coat of arms belongs, or that the person is a member of a related branch of the same family – differencing.

Please note however, that the form these marks take may vary from country to country – for example – the cadency label is used on several British royal banners in deference to (although not in strict accordance with) English heraldic practice, whilst traditional Scottish heraldry is more likely to employ a bordure and other European traditions may change the colour of a charge. It is suggested therefore, that a suitable glossary or heraldic dictionary be consulted for further details (see also ‘armorial bearings’, ‘bordure’, ‘coat of arms’, ‘label 2)’ and ‘shield’).

[cadency marks]
The cadency marks of the 1st to the 6th son in English heraldry (Parker)

A heraldic term for the magic wand or rod of Hermes/Mercury (patron of commerce) with two serpents wound around a winged staff; formerly also a symbol of the occult and of alchemists (amongst others), it is now more often (although by no means exclusively) associated with medical institutions – the staff of Hermes or of Mercury (see also ‘Staff of Asclepius’).

caduceus examples caduceus examples caduceus examples
Flag of the Head of State Tax Administration, Ukraine (fotw); Emblem of the Army Medical Corps, US (fotw); Customs Flag, Belarus (fotw)

Please note that this should not be confused with the Staff of Asclepius as referenced above, which has only one snake on an unadorned staff and is symbolic of the medical profession.

See ‘cross of Calatrava

calatrava cross
Putative Banner of the Order of Calatrava, Spain (fotw)

Every vessel at sea is allocated an international call sign consisting of at least four letters for identification purposes by any means of signalling available, including flags – see ‘call sign hoist’ below.

The current international call sign is made up of two letters identifying the country of registration and additional flags identifying the particular ship – but see ‘make her number’.
b) Most navies also prescribe tactical call signs according to their own naval signal codes and which is used intra-service for operational purposes. Warships also generally hoist their international call signs at the yardarm when entering or leaving harbour (see also ‘yardarm’).

A hoist of signal flags displaying the international call sign of a civil or naval vessel – but see ‘make her number’ (also 'address group', 'call sign', ‘signal hoist’, ‘international code of signal flags’, ‘pendant number’ and ‘signal flag’).

signal flag signal flag signal flag signal flag
NZAD (November-Zulu-Alpha-Delta) in the International Code of Signal Flags and the Call Sign Hoist of USS Blair (fotw)

Alternative heraldic terms which describe a three or four-armed (usually but not invariably faceted) figure that represents an implement of war consisting of four spikes which, when thrown on the ground, always has one point facing upwards, and designed to injure men and/or horses – a caltrop, calthrop, cheval-trap or galtrap (see also ‘faceted’).

caltrap caltrap caltrap
Flag and Arms of Castelo Rodrigo, Portugal (fotw); Major’s Colour Green Regiment c1642, England (fotw)

In heraldry see ‘cross of Calvary’.

Calvary cross Calvary cross
Cross of Calvary Example; Flag of Geraardsbergen, Belgium (fotw)

See ‘continental colours’.

Cambridge flag
Cambridge Flag/Continental Colours 1775 – 1777, US (fotw)

1) An alternative term for a company colour in some regiments of British and Canadian foot guards (but see also ‘company colour’ and note below).
2) See ‘camp flag’.
3) A term, now largely obsolete, for a small military flag originally used to delineate the boundaries of a regiment's encampment and later used in some armies as a company guide flag, to mark turning points in manoeuvring troops (but see also ‘fanion 3)’).

camp colour
Camp/Company Colour, No 2 Company, Governor General’s Foot Guards, Canada (Official Website)

Please note with regard to 1) that as far as is known this term is used by the British Grenadier Guards, the Grenadier Guards of Canada and the Governor General’s Foot Guards (also Canada) in place of company colour.

In the British and some other army usage, a non-ceremonial flag, often containing the relevant badge against regimental colours, and used to indicate the presence of a unit, Corps or Regiment, or the position of their headquarters, within a camp or other location – a regimental, unit or headquarters flag (see also ‘badge 3)’, ‘emblem military and governmental/departmental’ and ‘regimental colours 2)’).

British Army Air Corps British Royal Regiment of Artillery Training and Development Branch, Canada
Adjutant General’s Corps, UK (Graham Bartram); Royal Regiment of Artillery, UK (Graham Bartram); Training and Development Branch, Canada (fotw)

See ‘camp colour 1)’ and ‘company colour’.

1) A series of events which are designed to achieve a specific goal or goals – for example the campaign to adopt a flag (see also ‘flag design competition’).
2) In heraldry a word occasionally seen in place of the English term base – see ‘base 1)’ (also ‘in base’).

Campaign Campaign
Arms and Flag of Madalena, Portugal (fotw)

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