Definition of tricolor in US English:


(British tricolour)


  • A flag with three bands or blocks of different colors, especially the French national flag with equal upright bands of blue, white, and red.

    • ‘For each announcement, a large crowd of Sinn Féin supporters buzzed around to hoist the winner shoulder-high, to let out whoops and hollers and to wave a mass of tricolours.’
    • ‘Irish tricolours fluttered in the spring breeze from every other lamp post in the most republican of republican regions of the North.’
    • ‘The national flag is a tricolor of green, gold, and blue, with a stylized V in the center - representing the rich foliage of the island, the sun, and the sea.’
    • ‘For the fans, it was a last outing for the tricolours, silly hats, squeaky hammers and giant inflatable hands that have adorned them and their homes for the past three weeks.’
    • ‘Wearing little caps sporting tricolours, these enthusiastic boys sell printed flags for the Independence Day celebrations.’
    • ‘The following year the ‘Marseillaise’ was adopted as the national anthem, and the 14 July as a national fête, to join the tricolor as the national flag.’
    • ‘After the semi-final, more than half a million people gathered in the Champs-Elysées, waving French tricolours alongside Algerian and other African flags.’
    • ‘The country's flag is a vertical tricolor of orange, white, and green; orange represents the savannahs of the north, green represents the forests of the south, and white represents unity.’
    • ‘The fact that tricolours are burned at bonfires during the summer in the North is the source of much disgruntlement among tricolour lovers of the Republic.’
    • ‘Cian then returned home on Monday and was greeted by a sea of tricolours and banners at Dublin Airport.’
    • ‘Catholicism became the religion of ‘the majority of Frenchmen’ instead of the official religion of France, and the tricolour replaced the white flag of the Bourbons.’
    • ‘People have been waving tricolours at the matches for decades.’
    • ‘The flag is a tricolor with blue, white, and green fields and a red star on the triangular white field on the left.’
    • ‘I don't know who took commercial advantage of the public mood and produced all the baby tricolours but they must be smiling all the way to the bank.’
    • ‘Now instead of Union Jacks we've got tricolours going up.’
    • ‘So, will we see a St Pat's day, minus the green white and orange themed banners and tricolors?’
    • ‘The school band sprang into action while the waving tricolours led the President triumphantly into the school premises.’
    • ‘The elaborate floral displays of bikes and tricolours which many French villages put up were conspicuous by their absence.’
    • ‘I think it's so shabby when rows of tricolours are rotting away.’
    • ‘Many wore the traditional yellow shirts of the four-times champions and there was little sympathy for England's dejection on the Falls Road, still festooned with Irish tricolours.’


also tricolored
  • Having three colors.

    ‘the gull has a distinctive tricolored bill’
    • ‘France is peopled with patriots in red caps and tricoloured cockades, armed with national muskets and sabres, sullen and suspicious, who instinctively curse all aristocrats.’
    • ‘Laois stumbled under the tricoloured barrage and but for the finish which only familiarity with success breeds, might have weaved better patterns later in the game, with the gap down to just one point and Laois on the rack.’
    • ‘Second, the rich biodiversity must also be protected, such as tricolored orchids and Javanese eagles.’
    • ‘Despite the poor show by Offaly hurlers last Sunday in Croke Park, the lure of two games is expected to draw a respectable amount of tricoloured Gaels south.’
    • ‘The unfashionable tricoloured crew earned this win with some commendable determination, and after losing midfield, and only scoring four times from play from the eight forwards.’


Late 18th century: from French tricolore, from late Latin tricolor (see tri-, color).