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Living in the Languedoc:   CentralGovernment:   French National Symbols:   The Cross of Lorraine

The Cross of Lorraine. The Second World War was fought by the Free French under the sign of the Cross of Lorraine, the emblem chosen by the Resistance to distinguish their flag from the tricolour which had been kept by the Vichy Government.
The Cross of Lorraine is therefore used regularly on monuments commemorating the 1940-1945 period, from the greatest monuments to the humblestplaces marking the fighting in the maquis.

The first President of theFifth Republic, General Charles de Gaulle (President 1958-59) replaced the Republic portrayed as a woman by the Cross of Lorraine, surrounded by a V for victory, on the medal commemorating his entry into the Elysée Palace. This set a precedent for Presidents to choose their own personal devices. The Cross of Lorraine features in the bottom left hand corner of the stamp shown on the right, along with the French cockerel or rooster and the National cypher.


French stamp 2.30 Francs, 1990French stamp 3 Francs, 1977The Cross of Lorraine




A recent election poster



Until 2002 the cap appeared, along with the Cross of Lorraine, on the logo of a right-wing French political party called Rassemblement pour la République (RPR), the neo-Gaullist party of Jacques Chirac. The other part of the design is a Phrygian cap (or Liberty Cap) .

The Cross of Lorainne is one of the gererally recognised symbols of sovereignty not mentioned in article 2 of the French Constitution of 1958, which refers only to le drapeau tricolore, bleu, blanc, rouge: The French Flag , L'hymne national, the national anthem, The Marseillaise and La devise de la République; the motto . "Liberté, Égalité, Fraternité".


Coat of arms of NarbonneA cross with two cross-pieces is not always a Cross of Loraine - it is also used to indicate a senior Churchman such as a Patriarch (it is also known as a Patriarchal Cross). It also appears on the arms of the Archbishop of Narbonne (left)


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The French Pantheon
French National Symbols:
The Cross of Lorraine