Byzantine Empire, 13th century
An illustration in the “Book of all kingdoms”, by a Spanish friar in 1350, shows a quartered flag attributed to the “Empire of Constantinople”, the Byzantine Empire. It has four quarters and features the red St. George Cross and the arms of the Palaiologos family, who ruled from 1261-1453. It displays the Cross of Victory with four firesteels, carbon steel pieces used in fire-making. When struck with a sharp edge of flint, chert or similar rock, sparks fly from it.