During the Wuchang Uprising in 1911 that heralded the Republic, the various revolutionary armies had different flags.
Lu Hao-tung's "Blue Sky with a White Sun" flag was used in the provinces of Guangdong, Guangxi, Yunnan, and Guizhou.
In Wuhan, a flag with 18 yellow stars was used to represent the 18 administrative divisions at the time.
In Shanghai and northern China, a "Five-Colored Flag" (五色旗; wǔ sè qí) (Five Races Under One Union flag) was used of five horizontal stripes representing the five major nationalities of China: the Han (red), the Manchu (yellow), the Mongol (blue), the Hui (white), and the Tibetan (black).
When the government of the Republic of China was established on 1 January 1912, the "Five-Colored Flag" was selected by the provisional Senate as the national flag. The "18-Star Flag" was adopted by the army.
The modern flag was adopted as a naval ensign.