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9780070590939 From the front and rear flap of this 361 page book: "Flags stream gallantly through history - on spears and masts, fluttering from crenelated towers, stabbed into bullet-swept high ground, standing beside heads of state, painted on bomber's flanks, livening the United Nations' plaza, leading every prideful parade there ever was....the flag always has stood at the center of man's ideas, his ideals and achievements, his aspirations and defeats. The sweep of history has seen men and women everywhere rally around flags, from time immemorial when flags were crude marks of identity and symbols of great emotion to the great revolutions that saw the emergence of today's nation-states and their national flags. 'Flags Through the Ages and Across the World' is a major survery of civilization from the perspective of that unique artifact the flag - an exciting 5,000 year panorama that begins in the ancient Middle East and China and continues with the conquering Roman legionnaires, the early Christians, and their rash but stalwart descendants, the Crusaders. [This book] is the first truly comprehensive reference book on flags. This definitive book is the most complete source in existence for the official flags and coats of arms, as well as their symbols, of the world's 157 nations and their subdivisions and dependencies, accompanied by more than 2,250 illustrations created expressly for this book. [It is} a glorious spectacle with its astounding 2,800 full-color and 250 black-and-white illustrations of paintings, drawings, healdic coats of arms, flags - all superbly displayed. It is also the most thorough reference work on flag design, usage, rules, and symbolism and is a useful guide to principal flag types, shapes, and flag-related devices."