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1914–1918 Commemorative war medal (France)
Medaille comemo 1914 18 France.jpg
1914–1918 Commemorative war medal (obverse)
Awarded by  France
Type Medal
Awarded for Service in World War I
Established 23 June 1920
Next (higher) Médaille commémorative des batailles de la Marne (1914-1918)
Next (lower) Médaille commémorative de la bataille de la Somme

Medaille commemorative de la Guerre 1914-1918 ribbon.svg
Ribbon of the 1914–1918 Commemorative war medal


The 1914–1918 Commemorative war medal (French language: "Médaille commémorative de la guerre 1914–1918") was awarded to soldiers and sailors for service in World War I. It was also awarded to civilians who met certain requirements.


Created by Act of June 23, 1920, is awarded to any military member for service between 2 August 1914 and November 11, 1918. It is also given to civilians who served in the same period in the army or the Interior.

An open contest was held which invited many engravers of the time, and 73 models were presented to the jury. The model of Pierre-Alexandre Morlon was ultimately adopted. The event had a certain impact since L'Illustration, a prestigious magazine, illustrated in an article of January 29, 1921 pictures of the six models selected.

Description of the medal

The medal is round with a diameter of 33 mm. It is bronze. On the obverse, is an effigy of a youthful Minerva in profile, wearing the helmet of 1914, representing France. She is crowned with laurels and holding a sword in her left hand. There are bay leaves mixed with oak leaves at the top to join the medal pendant ring that attaches the medal to the ribbon.

On the reverse is the legend: GRANDE GUERRE 1914-1918, surrounded by the inscription REPUBLIQUE FRANÇAISE

There was originally a clap for Engagés Volontaires (Committed Volunteers). This was replaced when the Croix du combattant volontaire 1914-1918 was established in 1935.


The 1914–1918 Commemorative war medal was awarded to those who served in the following conditions between August 2, 1914 and November 11, 1918

  • All French soldiers and sailors present under arms or on board French warships, and merchant seamen, what would have been the length of their mobilization.
  • All foreign soldiers and sailors who served under French authority or aboard a French ship, excluding those that were posted there.
  • Officers and active persons of additional land subdivision railways
  • Nurses, doctors, pharmacists, managers of French or foreign nationality who served in the French army medical units or on a voluntary basis.
  • Civil guards, police officers and firefighters of bombed cities, having been officially registered between those dates and to have fulfilled their duties during the bombing.
  • Police officers of the City of Paris, The Seine, the inspectorate staff of the Paris Police, staff officers of the assets of the granting of Paris and civil guards, all of whom having been militarized by decree of 7, 9, 19 August and 21 September 1914.
  • French soldiers who are abroad, who have served in the ranks of the French Army, enlisting during the war in the Allied and Associated Armies of France.
  • Colonial workers employed in the work of national defense in France, provided they have served a period of six months between the dates of eligibility.
  • People of French or foreign nationality who served in the war zone in the works below designation, accredited to the French high command or under this command:
    • Various works, the soldier home, feeding station, etc.;
    • Knights of Columbus
    • American Red Cross
    • Mobile Sanitary Sections of the French Red Cross and foreigners in the French army

See also


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