This large old FREE FRENCH FLAG has considerable 'fade" but is intact.....measures 48" x 32" in size. Condition as pictured. Definitely a Genuine old Flag.I'm not sure if it is due to fading but the Cross of Lorraine on this flag is blue rather than the traditional red colour.
In many sources, Free French describes any French individual or unit that fought against Axis forces after the June 1940 armistice. The reality is more complex as the French forces of the Army of Africa under General Henri Giraud did take part in the fight against the Axis, for example in Tunisia in early 1943, without any relationship with Charles de Gaulle's organization.
Historically, an individual became Free French after he enlisted in de Gaulle's Free French organisation located in London. Free French units were units formed by these people. De Gaulle's organization stopped accepting members in mid-1943 as Free French forces were merging with the French forces in North Africa, and the Comité français de libération nationale (CFLN) was set up in Algiers. Postwar, to settle disputes over the Free French heritage, the French government issued an official definition of the term. Under this "ministerial instruction of July 1953" (instruction ministérielle du 29 juillet 1953), only those who served with the Allies after the Franco-German armistice in 1940 and before 1 August 1943 may correctly be called "Free French". French forces after July 1943 are therefore correctly designated as the "forces of Liberation" . Capitaine de corvette Thierry d'Argenlieu suggested the adoption of the Cross of Lorraine as a symbol of the Free French, both to recall the perseverance of Joan of Arc, whose symbol it had been, and as an answer to the Nazi swastika. In his general order № 2 of 3 July 1940, Vice Admiral Émile Muselier, two days after assuming the post of chief of the naval and air forces of the Free French, created the bow flag displaying the French colors with a red cross of Lorraine, and a cockade, which also featured the cross of Lorraine. Following repeated broadcasts, by the end of July 1940, seven thousand people had volunteered for the Free French forces. The Free French Navy manned some fifty ships with about 3,700 men operating as an auxiliary force to the British Royal Navy.
At Molloy's of Milford Antiques Centre, Auckland, New Zealand
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