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    M?daille des Victimes de l'Invasion


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    The French "M?daille des Victimes de l'Invasion" medals series is not often encountered and as such merits to be highlighted. The medals were instituted on 30 June 1921 by the Minister for Liberated Regions, in three classes : silver gilt, silver and bronze.

    Serving to acknowledge both the courage and the spirit of fortitude of those that were left homeless or had suffered otherwise from the German invasion during World War I, the design of the medal depicts a handcuffed woman firmly standing upright, with a devastated town in the background. The medals are in low relief but it is possible to see the word "FRANCE" on the right. At the bottom there is the name of the designer in very small script, P. Duatel.

    The reverse merely has an inscription : "AUX / VICTIMES / DE / L'INVASION / LA FRANCE / RECONNAISSANTE" (To the invasion victims from a grateful France), within a wreathed border which also bears the dates "1914" and "1918". A maker's mark and the designer's mark are also present.

    The medals are attached to the ribbon by a mount which depicts an arrangement of chain links. The ribbon itself is blue with a thin black centre stripe and red side stripes near the edges.

    On 10 January 1923, to denote respectively political prisoners and war hostages, ribbon clasps were created, inscribed "PRISONNIER POLITIQUE" and "OTAGE DE GUERRE". Note that these somewhat disproportionate bars also have chain links.

    Numbers awarded are not known to me but the scarceness of these medals would imply that few were distributed amongst the French population thus afflicted.

    Pictures of the silver and gilt medals would be highly appreciated !

    [attachmentid=52761] [attachmentid=52762]

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