Armes d'Honneur Awarded to the French Cavalry 1799 - 1802
Prior to the introduction of the Legion d'Honneur in 1803 the men of the French Army received Armes d'Honneur in recognition of their bravery on the battlefield. The 30th July 1791 saw the abolishment of decorations and Insignia, however on 5 May 1793, they were re-introduced by the National Convention and were specifically for the battle of Jemmapes. This award took the form of a Sabre d'Honneur and had an inscription on the blade which read "La Republique Francaise a Breteche".
In 1796 Napoleon introduced the award to be given to troops who had
distinguished themselves in battle whist serving with the Armee d'Italie
and initially ordered ninety sabres for Grenadiers and ten for Cavalry.
The blade was to be inscribed with the words
and on the reverse
On the 2nd February 1799 these awards were to be extended to drummers,
trumpeters, and artillerymen and by a Constitutional Decree dated 13
December 1799 as Article Eighty-seven of the constitution and stated:
The Consuls amended article Eighty-seven on the 25th December 1799
to read as follows:
Each award to be inscribed "Le 1er Consul au ? ". During the period December 1799 to 17 May 1802 a total of one thousand eight hundred and fifty-four Armes d'Honneur were awarded, of which the cavalry received three hundred and ninety-six, (this is excluding the Guard Cavalry). Below is a breakdown of the awards received by the Cavalry during this period.
Sabre d'Honneur Number Awarded
Carabines d'Honneur Number Awarded
Mousquetons d'Honneur Number Awarded
Fusils d'Honneur Number Awarded
Pistolets d'Honneur Number Awarded
Trompettes d'Honneur Number Awarded
A further breakdown is the number of awards received by rank is:
The Armes d'Honneur award was as coveted as the Legion d'Honneur and below is a list of the soldiers who received the award. It should be noted that two of these men unfortunately do not have the actual award they received, I have as yet not been able to locate any information on these two.
Pascal, Adrien. Histoire de l'Armee et de tous les Regiments Paris 1850 (four volumes)
Placed on the Napoleon Series: February 2002