Note:  Do not rely on this information. It is very old.


Ensign, a word formerly used in the English army to denote a junior rank of commissioned officers in an infantry regiment, one of whose duties was to carry the Queen's and the Regimental colours. The name is now abolished, and the title of second lieutenant substituted for it. In naval phraseology the ensign is the national flag, which is exhibited at the stern of a vessel. Both officer and flag were formerly called "ancient"; and this word is used in Shakespeare to denote the officer, and in old books of travel to denote the flag.