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1905–06 Belgian First Division

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Statistics of Belgian First Division in the 1905/1906 season.

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We’ve been asked many times to do special episodes about the various uniforms and equipment used during the war, which is something we don’t have time to cover in our regular Thursday episodes, so that’s what we’re going to do today. I’m Indy Neidell; welcome to a quick Great War special episode about French uniforms and equipment in the First World War. We will hopefully cover the basics on all of the major warring nations, and today we’ll start off with the French. Now, we’ve actually mentioned at times in our regular episodes the tragedy that befell the French at the Battles of the Frontiers in August 1914, when their brightly colored uniforms and strategy of marching en masse across fields against the enemy proved disastrous against German machine gun emplacements. The French lost 27,000 killed in one day, not counting wounded, missing, or captured, which was the highest single day death toll for any country during the entire war. See, the French, at the outbreak of the war, were prepared for war, but they weren’t prepared for 20th century modern war. Even so, when the war began France had universal conscription, with men called to service at the age of 18 and usually serving a four-year hitch. Upon discharge, they were placed in the reserves until the were around 33, and after that in the Territorial Army until they were in their late 40s, so one way or another they pretty much had some sort of military commitment for a big chunk of their adult lives. The 1914 uniforms, equipment, and tactics had changed little since the Franco-Prussian war of 1870-71. Infantry troops still wore the kepi- cap- blue tunic and greatcoat, and red trousers. Personal equipment was made of leather and was pretty cumbersome compared to that of many other European armies. The standard issue rifle was the Lebel 8mm, which, while better than the rifles of two generations earlier was very long and unwieldy, and when the bayonet was fixed, it towered over the average French soldier. The standard unit of infantry in 1914 was the Régiment d'Infantrie- R.I. Each one was individually numbered, and there were 173 R.I. when the war began. A typical R.I. consisted of 70 officers and 3,400 other ranks, and was organized into three battalions. In addi tion to the regimental commander and his staff, the regimental headquarters also included 12 mounted scouts and 120 men in an administration platoon: stretcher-bearers, sappers, armorers, butchers, cooks, and so forth. The first couple of months of the war- much like at the Battles of the Frontiers- really showed the shortcomings of the French uniforms, and in the early months of 1915 they were replaced by horizon blue uniforms. In the trenches, British style puttees- straps of cloth wrapped around the knees and ankles- were adopted in October 1914 as trench warfare really kicked into high gear. In March 1915, a steel skull cap was issued, to be worn under the wool Kepi, but it was eventually replaced by the Adrian M1915 steel helmets. The French Army was the first to introduce steel helmets, and by December 1915 more than three million Adrian helmets had been manufactured. The Adrian helmet proved sufficiently practical to remain unchanged for the remainder of the war. It was based on the French firemen’s helmets of the time, and was adopted by the Belgian, Russian, Serbian, and Italian armies. The horizon blue uniform also proved practical until the end of the war, although khaki of a shade described as "mustard" was introduced as well after 1914 for the North African and colonial troops serving in France. Let’s look at the Kepi for a minute. Here’s the 1884 model. Bright red wool, dark blue band, black leather visor, dark blue piping. Two air vents were actually situated one on either side of the cap. The regimental patch in red was sewn onto a dark blue rectangular patch, which in turn was sewn onto the front of the kepi. The interior was linen and had a black leather sweatband. A lot of men kept their kepis into the spring and even summer of 1915. The couvre-kepi- the kepi cover- was iron blue cotton and was secured to the kepi with a cord and two buttons. If we want to see real detail, here are some of the French belts. The 1873 le Centurion, black leather with a flat brass buckle. Les cartouchieres, model 1888, a blackened leather cartridge belt. And the 1905 model, which could not be worn only around the waist and required braces to hold it up. These are the les bretelles des suspension. Well, that’s the basic rundown on the French uniforms. If you search online you can find all sorts of more in-depth information about all of this. Now, you may be asking yourself, “Why didn’t Indy talk about the weapons they were issued?” and that’s a good question. The answer is that we’re doing a series of specials about the weapons used in the war in association with the YouTube channel and weapons expert C&Rsenal, and if you’d like to know about some of the French guns used, you can click here to check that one out. Don’t forget to subscribe, see you Thursday with our regular episode.



It was contested by 10 teams, and Union Saint-Gilloise won the championship.[1]

League standings

Qualification or relegation
1 Union Saint-Gilloise 18 15 3 0 75 12 +63 33
2 F.C. Brugeois 18 12 5 1 59 25 +34 29
3 Racing Club de Bruxelles 18 10 4 4 57 20 +37 24
4 C.S. Verviétois 18 7 3 8 32 41 -9 17
5 Daring Club de Bruxelles 18 6 5 7 32 44 -12 17
6 Léopold Club de Bruxelles 18 7 2 9 38 52 -14 16
7 Antwerp F.C. 18 7 0 11 30 58 -28 14
8 C.S. Brugeois 18 4 4 10 30 45 -15 12
9 F.C. Liégeois 18 4 2 12 23 65 -42 10
10 Beerschot 18 2 4 12 34 48 -14 8 Relegated to Promotion Division.


See also

1905-06 in Belgian football


  1. ^ a b Ploquin, Phil; Nackaerts, Luc; Coolsaet, Jeroen. "Belgium – Final Tables 1895–2008". The Rec.Sport.Soccer Statistics Foundation. Retrieved 16 December 2018.
This page was last edited on 29 July 2019, at 11:14
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