The Bleuet de France [fr]
Discover the story of the French flower of Remembrance. Since 1926, the Bleuet de France is a symbol of solidarity of the Nation with people who died in service of the country.
The Bleuet de France is the French flower of Remembrance. It was created in 1916 by two nurses in the “Institution Nationale des Invalides” - cutting edge institution tasked with providing medical attention to wounded or mutilated during the war - in order to help soldiers mutilated during the Great War recover a taste for life and support themselves. Facing the necessity to find an activity for the wounded, they decided to organize small workshops where cornflower badges were made from fabric and paper. These badges were sold to the public which allowed veterans to earn a small income. It gradually became a symbol of social and professional reintegration.
The cornflower was chosen as a reference of the name used by the “poilus” to call fresh conscripts arriving in the tranches with their new blue uniform. It is also a symbol of life in the chaos. Despite the horror of the front, cornflowers were still growing on the battlefield during the war and were available in great numbers in Eastern France. The “blue” also refers to the colour of the Nation, first colour of the French Tricolour.
Initially, the production was sold on a small scale in Paris. However, sales extended gradually to the whole country. In 1935, President of the Republic Gaston Doumergue declared the Bleuet flower of remembrance to “show the gratitude of the Nation and help these men who sacrificed their youth to defend France” and decided it would be sold every 11 November. In the 1957, it was decided that the Bleuet would also be sold on 8 May.
In 2012, 11 November became official day of remembrance not only for the First World War but also for every people who died in service of the country, including victims of terrorism.
Along with the Red Poppy for Commonwealth countries, created in 1921, the Bleuet de France became a symbol of solidarity of the Nations with all these victims. Today, nearly 100 years later, the Bleuet de France pursues its traditional mission of moral and financial support for people who died for France and their family
nnelle mission de soutien financier et moral des morts pour la France et leurs familles.
Get involved and wear your Bleuet ! Avalaible for purchase in the French consulat and on www.bleuetdefrance.fr.