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Military Flags 1701-1918 (Prussia, Germany)

Last modified: 2004-12-29 by
Keywords: prussia | military | infantry | dragoons | eagle (black) | wreath (yellow) | crown: royal | cross: maltese (red) | pennant |
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Prussian Infantry 18th Century

A site that is of interest to anyone interested in military colours of the 18th Century, particularly those regiments in the French, Prussian and Hanoverian service, is Nec Pluribus Impar.

Ian Sumner, 25 October 2000

The Nec Pluribus Impar website has some very interesting pages, for instance Drapeaux de l'Infanterie Prussiene sous Frederic le Grand [Flags of the Prussian Infantry under Frederic the Great] by Patrice Menguy:

Régiment N°13
Couleur distinctive noire, coins rouges, métal argent. Touche ses drapeaux au chiffre de Frédéric II en 1741. L'aigle traditionnellement de couleur noire se trouve dans la couleur du métal dans le cas où elle repose sur un fond noir. Entre 1713 et 1720, la couleur distinctive était bleue, coins flammés jaunes, métal or. Entre 1720 et 1729, la couleur distinctive était bleue, flammes de la couleur inversée du fond, coins flammés jaunes, métal or. Entre 1729 et 1741, la couleur distinctive était noire, coins rouges, métal or.

Régiment N°14
Couleur distinctive rouge pourpre, métal or. Touche ses drapeaux au chiffre de Frédéric II en 1742. Depuis 1713, la couleur distinctive était rouge pourpre, métal or.

Régiment N°15 (3 bat.)
Le fond de l'étoffe était d'une seule pièce, les bandes verticales ne peuvent pas rendre l'aspect que devaient avoir ces drapeaux, confectionnés dans une soie de damas blanche et argent mêlée. Il fort probable que l'ensemble des motifs devaient être en broderie de fils d'or et d'argent. Touche ses drapeaux au chiffre de Frédéric II en 1742.

Régiment N°16
Couleur distinctive orange, flammes dans la couleur inversée du fond, métal or. Touche ses drapeaux au chiffre de Frédéric II en 1742. Depuis 1713 la couleur distinctive était orange, flammes dans la couleur inversée du fond, métal or.

Régiment N°17
Couleur distinctive rouge pourpre, coins rouge pourpre, métal or. Touche ses drapeaux au chiffre de Frédéric II en 1742. Entre 1713 et 1742, la couleur distinctive était rouge pourpre, coins rouge pourpre, métal or.

Régiment N°18
Couleur distinctive bleue, coins flammés rouges, métal argent. Touche ses drapeaux au chiffre de Frédéric II en 1742. En 1713, tous les drapeaux étaient des "Leibfahnen", fond et centre blanc, métal or. En 1716, la couleur distinctive était bleue, coins rouges, métal or. En 1731, la couleur distinctive était bleue, coins flammés par opposition rouges et bleus sur le Leibfahne, et rouges et blancs sur les Ordinarfahnen, métal or.

Régiment N° 19
Couleur distinctive rouge pourpre, "Johanniterkreuz", métal or. Depuis 1713. Touche ses drapeaux au chiffre de Frédéric II en 1742.

Régiment N°20
Couleur distinctive verte, métal or. Depuis 1713. Touche ses drapeaux au chiffre de Frédéric II en 1742.

I have repalletized and resized to FOTW standards the three I find nicer.

Santiago Dotor, 26 October 2000

My translation:

13th Regiment
Distinctive colour black, red corners, silver as metal. "Touches" its flags with the cypher of Frederic II in 1741. The eagle, which is traditionally of black colour, is of the metal colour when it lies on a black background. From 1713 to 1720, the distinctive colour had been blue, flamed yellow corners, gold as metal. From 1720 to 1729, the distinctive colour had been blue, flames of the inversed beckground colour, flamed yellow corners, gold as metal. From 1729 to 1741, the distinctive colour had been black, red corners, gold as metal.

14th Regiment
Distinctive colour purple red, gold as metal. "Touches" its flags with the cypher of Frederic II in 1742. Since 1713, the distinctive colour has been purple red, gold as metal.

15th Regiment (3 bat.)
The background was made of a single piece of fabric, the vertical stripes cannot reproduce the look these flags should have had. The flags were made of a mixed white and silver damask silk. "Touches" its flag with the cypher of Frederic II in 1742.

16th Regiment
Distinctive colour orange, flames of the inversed background colour, gold as metal. "Touches" its flag with the cypher of Frederic II in 1742. Since 1713, the distinctive colour has been orange, flames of the inversed background colour, gold as metal.

17th Regiment
Distinctive colour purple red, purple red corners, gold as metal. "Touches" its flag with the cypher of Frederic II in 1742. From 1713 to 1742 the distinctive colour had been purple red, purple red corners, gold as metal.

18th Regiment
Distinctive colour blue, flamed red corners, silver as metal. "Touches" its flag with the cypher of Frederic II in 1742. In 1713, all of its flags were Leibfahnen, white background and center, gold as metal. In 1716, the distinctive colour was blue, red corners, gold as metal. In 1731, the distinctive colour was blue, flamed corners, opposed red and blue on the Leibfahne and red and white on the Ordinärfahne, gold as metal.

19th Regiment
Distinctive colour purple red, Johanniterkreuz, gold as metal. Since 1713. "Touches" its flag with the cypher of Frederic II in 1742.

20th Regiment
Distinctive colour green, gold as metal. Since 1713. "Touches" its flag with the cypher of Frederic II in 1742.

Ivan Sache, 26 October 2000


Regimental Colour 16th Infantry Regiment, 18th Century

Ordinärfahne

[Regimental Colour 16th Infantry Regiment, 18th Century (Prussia, Germany)] 1:1
by Patrice Menguy and Santiago Dotor

The Leibfahne or King's Colour would exchange orange and white.

Santiago Dotor, 26 October 2000


Regimental Colour 18th Infantry Regiment, 18th Century

Ordinärfahne

[Regimental Colour 18th Infantry Regiment, 18th Century (Prussia, Germany)] 1:1
by Patrice Menguy and Santiago Dotor

The Leibfahne or King's Colour would exchange blue and white.

Santiago Dotor, 26 October 2000


King's Colour 19th Infantry Regiment, 18th Century

Leibfahne

[King's Colour 19th Infantry Regiment, 18th Century (Prussia, Germany)] 1:1
by Patrice Menguy and Santiago Dotor

The Ordinärfahne or Regimental Colour would exchange white and red.

Santiago Dotor, 26 October 2000


Prussian Dragoons 18th Century

Also from the Nec Pluribus Impar website the standard of the Dragoner-Regiment von Platen Nr.8 (Prussian 8th Dragoons Regiment "von Platen") and the standard of the Dragoner-Regiment von Finckenstein Nr.10 (Prussian 10th Dragoons Regiment "von Finckenstein").

Santiago Dotor, 26 October 2000

My translation:

8th Dragoon Regiment 'von Platen' [image of the standard here]

As with the standards and guidons of the French Army, Prussian standards [sic: it is a guidon] were made from a [silk] material called 'gros de Tours'. When it was raised, the 8th carried five ordinary standards, the 2nd, 3rd and 5th Squadrons still carried standards which bore the cipher of Frederick William; those of the 8th and 10th Squadrons could only have carried those with the cipher of Frederick II.

This is confirmed by the War Ministry: in 1807, the regiment's Leibstandarte bore the cipher of Frederick II (in silk and bullion), and a drawing of 1786 shows a standard with the cipher of Frederick William in the same material.

The dimensions of the guidons were around 50cm on the staff, 65cm from the staff to the points of the tail, and 50cm from the staff to the cut-away part of the fly. The central design was an oval cartouche in silver, bearing a crowned black eagle, with gold beak and feet, and red tongue and claws, charged on the breast with the crowned FII cipher embroidered in gold, [and carrying] a sword with a gold hilt and silver blade; above the eagle is a black scroll with gold edges, and the motto 'Pro Gloria et Patria' also in gold. The cartouche is surrounded by laurel branches embroidered in gold, and tied with a gold ribbon, and the whole is surmounted by a gold crown with a red centre, with silver pearls and precious stones. The sheet is black with wavy red flames at each corner. In each corner is the crowned FR cipher of Frederick II, embroidered in gold, surrounded by gold laurel branches.

The colonel's guidon (Leibstandarte) had a white sheet with red flames, the central cartouche being in the distinctive colour, black in this case, and the motto scroll in white; all other elemts were the same as the regimental guidons.
The staff, in the form of a tournament lance, was the same colour was the sheet, reinforced with metal. The finial, in gilded metal bore the crowned cipger of Frederick II. Cords and tassels were all of silver bullion.

10th Dragoon Regiment 'von Finckenstein' [image of the standard here]

As with the standards and guidons of the French Army, Prussian standards were made from a material called 'gros de Tours'. In the case of the 9th and 10th Dragoons, most standards bore the cipher of Frederick William. Each received a Leibstandarte with Frederick's cipher towards the end of the war [this must be the War of Austrian Succession].

[The rest of the description is the same as above, except for the colours. The sheet is orange with scarlet wavy flames and a white centre on the regimental guidons, and white with red flames and an orange centre for the Leibstandarte. The scroll was orange/gold or white/gold.]
[The crown was apparently silver instead of gold, although the laurels remained gold.]

Ian Sumner, 27 October 2000


Lance Pennant

White over red swallow tailed.

Norman Martin, 20 January 1998

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