Few symbols are as powerful at identifying an individual as belonging to a particular tribe or group than a patriotic tattoo; and there is perhaps no greater symbol identifying a sovereign nation than its flag, so it should come as no surprise that flags are extraordinarily popular as patriotic tattoo designs.
Flag tattoo designs are a powerful way for an individual to symbolize their love, devotion, patriotism and sense of national pride for their country.
The national flag of Ireland is a vertical tricolor of green (at the hoist), white, and orange. It is also known as the Irish tricolor. The flag proportion is 1:2 (length twice the width). Officially the flag has no meaning in the Irish Constitution, however a common interpretation is that the green represents Roman Catholism while the orange represents Protestantism. The white in the centre signifies a lasting truce between the 'Green' and the 'Orange'.
Presented as a gift in 1848 to Thomas Francis Meagher from a small group of French women sympathetic to the Irish cause, it was not until the Easter Rising of 1916, when it was raised above the General Post Office in Dublin, that the tricolor came to be regarded as the national flag. Meagher was the son of Newfoundland-born mayor of Waterford, Thomas Meagher Jr, however there are two theories on his inspiration for the flag; the similarly-symbolic Newfoundland Tricolor created in 1843, and the French Tricolor.
The flag was adopted in 1919 by the Irish Republic during its war of independence, and subsequently by the Irish Free State (1922–1937), later being given constitutional status under the 1937 Constitution of Ireland. The tricolor is regarded by many nationalists as the national flag of the whole island of Ireland. Thus it is flown (often controversially) by many nationalists in Northern Ireland as well as by the Gaelic Athletic Association. It is similar to the Flag of Côte d'Ivoire, but that flag is shorter and the colors are reversed.
Below you will find a gallery of inspirational images that will help you in your quest of creating the perfect flag tattoo.