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 Post subject: feathers
PostPosted: Mon Aug 17, 2009 17:23 pm 
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Location: Kent and Sussex
Real Name: Lee
Group: Gold beach group and carrier crew
Yo there Italian people, I am currently writing a bit of my novel and need a hand, please can someone tell me a bit about the feathers worn on the helmets. What colour were they, did they have differing colours? oh and were they only worn on Officers helmets.

Many thanks

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 Post subject: Re: feathers
PostPosted: Mon Aug 17, 2009 20:34 pm 
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Real Name: Neil Lawrence
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Which feathers do you refer to Ham?

Two main units wore feathers, the Alpini and the Bersaglieri.

Image

Bersaglieri


Image

Alpini

Neil

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IF, and only IF, there is a war, we may provide you with a camouflage hood or cap in times of wet weather (Quote from the 1936 drill manual for the REI)


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Telo Tenda Mimetico Modello 1929. Keeping Farbs dry at night since 1978

Its a Tent! Its a Poncho! Its a Ground Sheet! Its a Camouflage against the enemy. My word, its even a waterproof sleeping bag! It is not, however, German.

M33 Elmetto. Good against shrapnel. Great for grinding coffee. For that superb sweat encrusted taste.[/size]
http://ww2italianreenactment.com/


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 Post subject: Re: feathers
PostPosted: Tue Aug 18, 2009 7:46 am 
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Joined: Thu Dec 28, 2006 14:05 pm
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Just to elaborate. Bersaglieri plumes are made of cockrel feathers (from the tail I believe), and Alpini, originally, from Eagle feathers IIRC. It was part of an Alpinos training, at least as a story to tell, to climb up a mountain and steal a feather from a bird. Much like Edelweiss with the Germans. I do not think the situation was similar for the Bersaglieri... :lol:

The Pom-Poms on the Alpini cap varied in colour due to the battalion of a regiment, and some special colours were also given to units of Alpini engineers etc.

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 Post subject: Re: feathers
PostPosted: Tue Aug 18, 2009 7:53 am 
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Remind me, what is the story behind the origin of the Bersaglieri plumes?

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 Post subject: Re: feathers
PostPosted: Tue Aug 18, 2009 12:43 pm 
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Location: Leybourne Soviet Socialist Republic
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It's a sad tale comrade; the brother of the creator of the Bersaglieri, Alessandro La Marmora, was nibbled to death by a capercaillie.
Alessandro vowed on the sacred blood of his native Sardinia that all avians of the species tetrao urogallus would pay for the loss of his younger sibling with their plumage.
Tragic I know, but then he was a man of the feud.

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 Post subject: Re: feathers
PostPosted: Tue Aug 18, 2009 18:36 pm 
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SuperMario wrote:
Which feathers do you refer to Ham?

Two main units wore feathers, the Alpini and the Bersaglieri.

Image

Bersaglieri


Image

Alpini

Neil


Hi Neil

in answer to your question I have no idea, just any old feathers would do for now that would have been seen in North Africa. If they didnt wear them there then no worries. Sorry to be a pain.

Lee

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2nd and 4th Field Squadrons Royal Engineers, 7th Armoured Division 1941 - 1943

Cheshire Regiment Heavy Machine gun crew


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 Post subject: Re: feathers
PostPosted: Tue Aug 18, 2009 19:17 pm 
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No Alpini served in the desert. Only the Bersaglieri fought with feathers in North Africa

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 Post subject: Re: feathers
PostPosted: Tue Aug 18, 2009 23:03 pm 
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Real Name: Lee
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Righteo then many thanks

And may i add i have learnt something new today, its amazing what can be learned about those silly little things like feathers!

Cheers
Ham and Jam

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505th Field Company Royal Engineers, 50th Northumbrian Division 1944

2nd and 4th Field Squadrons Royal Engineers, 7th Armoured Division 1941 - 1943

Cheshire Regiment Heavy Machine gun crew


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 Post subject: Re: feathers
PostPosted: Wed Aug 19, 2009 11:28 am 
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contrary to my good Amici Elsan put, the feathers do not symbolise the death of the founder of the Bersaglieri's brother.

They were initially applied to the wide brim hat in order to break up the outline during combat. It was applied as a form of camoflage (Strange though it may seem). The act of doing this stuck, and is now part of the tradition of the Bersagleiri.

The Alpini wear a feather much as Robou described. A recruit was expected to climb a mountain, and acquire one from an eagles eerie. This proved he scaled the heights and was worthy of being an Alpini.
Since then, the feathers have been worn, but now the Alpini wear Rooks feathers (Soldiers and NCO's) Eagles feathers (Officers) and Goose feathers (High ranking officers).

One Alpini regiment served in North Africa. It was the Amba Uork regiment, and served in the east african campaigns against the British. An elite regiment that fought with distinction at the battle of Kerren. Other 'ex' - Alpini also served in the North African battles, but in different regiments. Some of these guys retained their cappellos. However, the main unit was the Bersaglieri, who again fought with distinction throughout the campaign, mainly as part of the 7th Trento Motorised division.

Neil

_________________
MAI DAUR!

IF, and only IF, there is a war, we may provide you with a camouflage hood or cap in times of wet weather (Quote from the 1936 drill manual for the REI)


Image

Telo Tenda Mimetico Modello 1929. Keeping Farbs dry at night since 1978

Its a Tent! Its a Poncho! Its a Ground Sheet! Its a Camouflage against the enemy. My word, its even a waterproof sleeping bag! It is not, however, German.

M33 Elmetto. Good against shrapnel. Great for grinding coffee. For that superb sweat encrusted taste.[/size]
http://ww2italianreenactment.com/


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 Post subject: Re: feathers
PostPosted: Wed Aug 19, 2009 12:01 pm 
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Ahhh yes! I remember you telling me now Neil, still its good to recount the tale for forum viewers :D

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"I saw cities in Europe that were practically untouched by the war, countries that capitulated to the more powerful enemies even before war was declared, but we are not like that. Our grandfathers, our fathers, our older generation, our great leaders, fought here for each building, for each street." - First Deputy Prime Minister Dmitry Rogozin on the 70th anniversary of victory at Stalingrad


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 Post subject: Re: feathers
PostPosted: Wed Aug 19, 2009 13:33 pm 
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I was aware that the 'Pusteria' Divison fought in the 2nd Italo-Abyssynian war, but did not realise that any stayed on afterwards. I thought it was mostly Savoy Grenediers at Keren. I 'spose you learn something new every day.

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 Post subject: Re: feathers
PostPosted: Wed Aug 19, 2009 14:26 pm 
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So am i right in saying during the early battles around Tobruk there would have been Italian units in the region who were Bersaglieri and would have worn feathers?

If so it would add a bit more interest and look cool for the story line.

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505th Field Company Royal Engineers, 50th Northumbrian Division 1944

2nd and 4th Field Squadrons Royal Engineers, 7th Armoured Division 1941 - 1943

Cheshire Regiment Heavy Machine gun crew


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 Post subject: Re: feathers
PostPosted: Wed Aug 19, 2009 15:43 pm 
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SuperMario wrote:
contrary to my good Amici Elsan put, the feathers do not symbolise the death of the founder of the Bersaglieri's brother.


Neil


Oh well, stick to your 'true-accurate-based-on-actual-documented-evidence' explanation if you wish: I still prefer my 'made-up-on-the-spur-of-the-moment-whilst-bored-at-work-Wikipedia-style' answer :wink:

_________________
"Genius may have its limitations, but stupidity is not thus handicapped." - Elbert Green Hubbard

"The only man I know who behaves sensibly is my tailor; he takes my measurements anew each time he sees me. The rest go on with their old measurements and expect me to fit them." - George Bernard Shaw

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 Post subject: Re: feathers
PostPosted: Wed Aug 19, 2009 16:28 pm 
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Elsan wrote:
SuperMario wrote:
contrary to my good Amici Elsan put, the feathers do not symbolise the death of the founder of the Bersaglieri's brother.


Neil


Oh well, stick to your 'true-accurate-based-on-actual-documented-evidence' explanation if you wish: I still prefer my 'made-up-on-the-spur-of-the-moment-whilst-bored-at-work-Wikipedia-style' answer :wink:


Sorry to spoil your fun Richard. I'd liked your version, but felt it should've been the founders cocker spaniel that got mobbed and killed, rather than his brother. You have to keep it in the realms of realism you see.

Ham and Jam. Definately Bersaglieri. Lots of pics of them with captured Tommies after the fall of Tobruk. Please bear in mind that this was an elite formation, and not a stereo typed 'drop it and run' styled conscritped Italian division. Facing the Bersaglieri in battle was not a favoured option. They were held in high regard by ANZAC forces for their combat skills.

Just as a sub note, the reported new spike lee film about the black US division in Italy was actually captured by Bersaglieri troops, not SS as the film reportly shows. Its more becoming for Hollywood to show Yanks being taken prisoner by nasty ol Germans than historical fact. Funny that.

Neil

Neil

_________________
MAI DAUR!

IF, and only IF, there is a war, we may provide you with a camouflage hood or cap in times of wet weather (Quote from the 1936 drill manual for the REI)


Image

Telo Tenda Mimetico Modello 1929. Keeping Farbs dry at night since 1978

Its a Tent! Its a Poncho! Its a Ground Sheet! Its a Camouflage against the enemy. My word, its even a waterproof sleeping bag! It is not, however, German.

M33 Elmetto. Good against shrapnel. Great for grinding coffee. For that superb sweat encrusted taste.[/size]
http://ww2italianreenactment.com/


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 Post subject: Re: feathers
PostPosted: Wed Aug 19, 2009 16:40 pm 
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robou wrote:
I was aware that the 'Pusteria' Divison fought in the 2nd Italo-Abyssynian war, but did not realise that any stayed on afterwards. I thought it was mostly Savoy Grenediers at Keren. I 'spose you learn something new every day.



Rob. The Amba Uork was soley a unit comprised of colonists from the area, especially those with knowledge of the mountains in east africa. Amba Uork was the name of one of the battles in the second Abysinnian war. This wasn't a metropolitan unit sent out, but one raised in theatre, long before the war i might add. They wore casco colniale with the feathers attached on the right side. An original Brass Alpini badge for the casco coloniale will fetch a pretty penny!

Neil

_________________
MAI DAUR!

IF, and only IF, there is a war, we may provide you with a camouflage hood or cap in times of wet weather (Quote from the 1936 drill manual for the REI)


Image

Telo Tenda Mimetico Modello 1929. Keeping Farbs dry at night since 1978

Its a Tent! Its a Poncho! Its a Ground Sheet! Its a Camouflage against the enemy. My word, its even a waterproof sleeping bag! It is not, however, German.

M33 Elmetto. Good against shrapnel. Great for grinding coffee. For that superb sweat encrusted taste.[/size]
http://ww2italianreenactment.com/


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 Post subject: Re: feathers
PostPosted: Wed Aug 19, 2009 16:47 pm 
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Joined: Thu Dec 28, 2006 14:05 pm
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Real Name: Rob Boughen
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SuperMario wrote:
robou wrote:
I was aware that the 'Pusteria' Divison fought in the 2nd Italo-Abyssynian war, but did not realise that any stayed on afterwards. I thought it was mostly Savoy Grenediers at Keren. I 'spose you learn something new every day.



Rob. The Amba Uork was soley a unit comprised of colonists from the area, especially those with knowledge of the mountains in east africa. Amba Uork was the name of one of the battles in the second Abysinnian war. This wasn't a metropolitan unit sent out, but one raised in theatre, long before the war i might add. They wore casco colniale with the feathers attached on the right side. An original Brass Alpini badge for the casco coloniale will fetch a pretty penny!

Neil


Well that'd figure. Give me Libyan colonial units any day, but Abyssinnian... I have enough trouble finding the casco coloniale (at least in my size) let alone a badge so rare.

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