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Had some pic up's to do yesterday going from Namur in Belgium to Lille in the north of France.

In stead of going from one point to the other at all speed, we decided to go slow and choose the rural small roads.

It was a great experience.

One of the places we came by was Conde sur Escaut a very nice old historical town that I would recomend to visit.


Lille is quiet nice as well, but I choose the suburbs of the town ( for parking facilities!)to meet the sellers, so no pic's from that place.......
But here is the beast! 
The 4 th lancers were involved at; http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Battle_of_Haelen_(1914)
And here is the whole lot that I brought back from our trip;
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  • 4 years later...

Managed to find this exceptional large (1.12m by 0.82m! ) picture of a NCO at the second lancers.

Seen here with my 4th lancers outfit.

Not a great picture, but it was the best I could do....


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An interesting find (or purchase, perhaps), Stuka! I have always had a liking for the Belgian Lancer dolman (and have a very moth-eaten one, myself).

Can you clarify for me, is it an original photograph which has been enlarged more recently, do you think? I see a coat of arms in the top right corner. Is this a later addition, in your opinion? Have you researched the coat of arms to identify the subject of the portrait?

Sorry, to ask so many questions :( 

Edited by Trooper_D
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don't be sorry!

Always nice to get a response when posting on a forum.

I can not answer you about the picture being a time piece or not. At first glance it seems authentic, but a closer inspection is needed. That means it has to come out of the frame, and that is quiet a job.

The coat of arms is a later addition, looks like a magnified cut out, on paper...

But I managed to find out who it was, with the great help of  the history society of Kampenhout (the city where this family used to live). And they apparently have the same original and  normal sized,picture. According to them taken in the year 1900 by the Brussels court-photographer - Ferd. Buyle - 104 Marché aux herbes Bruxelles.

They also stated ; "from left to right we see the only son of Baron Henri de Fierlant: Adriën de Fierlant, in his uniform of lieutenant 2e. Lancers, who died in the year 1908 in the Congolese LUBA area as Agent for the Belgian company LOMAMI."

The family was original from the Netherlands but choose to emigrate due to the religion quarrels in the early 17 th century.

Among his ancestress;

-Simon de Fierlant  finished his career as Chancellor of Brabant under the reign of Charles II (King of Spain)

-Goswin de Fierlant who became a colonel in the armies of Napoleon and who at the head of the Walloon Dragons' Regiment was involved in the battle of Baumersdorf ....

I got the picture for 20 euro, from a house clearing of a family member , descendant from the sister of Adrien de Fierlant.

Who by being a descendant of the female branch of the family lost the name.


Just one more thing, the uniform on the picture (to me!!) , is the highest NCO and not a lieutenant, as the history society stated.

He might ended up as a lieutenant before going to Congo.

And I would love to see your dolman! 😉

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What an interesting back story, Stuka.

I am not familiar with the way the Belgian army of the time trained officers. Was it necessary to be an NCO for a period of time before you could become an officer-cadet, as was the case in the German-speaking lands?

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Thanks Trooper_D.

My guess is that it have always been that way, yes.

For as far as I know only two NCO ranks were given to "cadets" during the evolution; sergeant and warrant officer. All other 8 or 9 NCO ranks did not apply to cadet officers.

Although our system (and laws!) are more copied for the french.

Or should I say, a left over from our french period.

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Hello, Interesting history. regarding the career to become officer , first was the Royal Military School , which provided the proffesional officers. then the officers promoted from the cadre of career NCOS,as in France . finally the Reserve officers, The Belgian Army in 1913 was the subject of a vast plan of reformation and enlargement but at the outbreak of WW1 it was far from completed, 

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