So for the benefit of Eamonn Mac Con Midhe, here is the background to the Cross of St Patrick and for further information he may wish to refer to A History of Irish Flags from Earliest Times, which was written by Professor G A Hayes-McCoy and published in 1979.
- The red saltire, which is described as the Cross of St Patrick, was used to represent Ireland in the Union Flag, which dates from 1 January 1801. However it was used long before that.
- The Cross of Saint Patrick was incorporated in the coat of arms of the Order of the Knights of Saint Patrick, which was instituted in 1783. It is sometimes argued that it was borrowed for this purpose from the arms of the Fitzgerald family but there is much evidence for an earlier use of the Cross of St Patrick.
- A book entitled De Doorliughtige Weerld, published in 1700, described the flag of Ireland as a 'white flag with a red St Andrew's Cross'.
- A saltire also appeared on an old seal of the Dean and Chapter of Armagh.