This vintage postcard shows traditional and patriotic Irish green and gold flags with words “Erin Go Bragh” or “Ireland Forever”. The postcard wishes a St. Patrick’s Day greeting in gold embossed print and is really a beautiful St. Patrick’s Day postcard that would have been sent at the turn of the 20th century.
A flag of Kelly green with a harp was an historic symbol of Ireland, going back to the 1640s and Confederate Ireland under Owen Roe O’Neill . In 1646 he led the Irish in the Battle of Benburb against the English. Representing the fight for freedom against Britain it was widely adopted by the Irish Volunteers during the 1700s – 1800s.
A rival Protestant organization, the Orange Order, from Northern Ireland, founded in 1795 in memory of King William of Orange and the ‘glorious revolution’ of 1689 used orange against green on a flag and the color orange became associated with Protestants and Northern Ireland.
Today, the official flag of Ireland has vertical bands of green, white, and a color that looks at times to be gold and at others to be orange. It is officially orange. The significance of the colors was due to all the fighting between the Catholic and Protestant Irish. Green represents the Catholics, orange represents the Protestants, and white is for peace between the two. This is written in the Irish law of Dáil Éireann, the parliament of the Republic of Ireland – Southern Ireland. Some people still use a flag of green, white, and gold to represent the Republic of Ireland, often as a political statement, but sometimes just due to the orange color not being correct – it being close to a gold color.