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Drapeaux of the French Army    Line & Light Infantry    1794-1804

Images Added October 2015

9th & 10th Demi-Brigades of Infantry


In 1794 the republican government completely reorganized the French Army to erase all vestiges of the traditions of the army of the Bourbons. The regimental system was abolished and the infantry was regrouped into "demi-brigades," of three battalions. The first and third battalions of each demi-brigade were to be raised from the volunteers of 1791-92 and the conscripts of 1793, while the second battalions came from the disbanded regiments of the old army. Demi-brigades were classed as "line" or "light" according to the former regimental designations of their second battalions, but they were all supposed to be armed, uniformed and organized alike. Each demi-brigade was to be issued three colors, one per battalion. Those of the first and third battalions were of a design unique to each demi-brigade, while those of the second battalions were of the same design regardless of demi-brigade. All displayed the insignia of the French Republic and the national colors of blue, white and red. On the reverse was the inscription DISCIPLINE AND SUBMISSION TO MILITARY LAW. The colors were supposed to be 160cm square and made of silk; a Tricolor cravat was to be tied in a bow on the staff, just below the pike head. Many demi-brigades, however, ignored the regulations and carried flags of their own design. White royal colors were often modified by the addition of strips of red and blue cloth and republican inscriptions, so that by 1804 the French Army was carrying a bewildering array of colors that conformed to no standard pattern. In that year, with the proclamation of the Empire of the French, the Army was reorganized and issued colors of a new pattern.

Note on the Illustrations: Since second battalion colors were identical except for the number of the demi-brigade, only one is illustrated here (2nd Battalion, 1st Demi-Brigade). For all others the color for the first and third battalions only is illustrated. For each color, the obverse (right) and reverse (left) are shown.


1st & 3rd Battalions, 1st Demi-Brigade of Infantry


2nd Battalion, 1st Demi-Brigade of Infantry


2nd Demi-Brigade of Infantry


6th Demi-Brigade of Infantry


7th Demi-Brigade of Infantry


8th Demi-Brigade of Infantry


9th Demi-Brigade of Infantry


10th Demi-Brigade of Infantry


13th Demi-Brigade of Infantry


15th Demi-Brigade of Infantry


18th Demi-Brigade of Infantry


22nd Demi-Brigade of Infantry


52nd Demi-Brigade of Infantry


73rd Demi-Brigade of Infantry


79th Demi-Brigade of Infantry


88th Demi-Brigade of Infantry


90th Demi-Brigade of Infantry


95th Demi-Brigade of Infantry

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