Last modified: 2021-06-16 by ivan sache
Keywords: formerie |
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Flag of Formerie - Image by Olivier Touzeau, 4 January 2021
The municipality of Formerie (2,120 inhabitants in 2018; 845 ha) is located 40 km north-west of Beauvais. The municipality was established on 1 January 2019 as the merger of the former municipalities of Formeroe and Boutavent.
In late October 1870, the school master of Marseille-le-Petit, a village occupied by the Prussians, warned by wire the French staff that the Prussians, aiming at seizing the Amiens-Rouen railway, were about to attack Formerie. on 27 October, the 5th Infantry Battalion, sent from Le Havre by train, was stationed in Formerie and three neighboring villages to watch the railway. Unaware of the operation, Colonel d'Espeuilles (1831-1913), commander of the 3rd Hussars Regiment, first mistook them for Prussian detachments.
A part of the 19th Regiment of the Line, which had been incorporated to the 5th Battalion, hold the Formerie railway station. Some 130 experienced soldiers, commanded by Captain Dorant, repelled the Prussian cavalry out of the town. They subsequently had a skirmish with a Prussian detachment equipped with artillery. After one hour of fierce fighting, the French soldiers were given assistance by a company commanded by Captain Alavoine and d'Espeuilles' hussars. The Prussians withdrew one hour later.
The French "victory" was, unfortunately, a minor episode in the war, since the citadel of Metz surrendered to the Prussians the same day.
[Le blog d'une généalogiste, 28 October 2020]
The flag of Formerie (photo) is bluish-dark green with a red shield surmounted by a yellow cartouche with the name of the municipality in black. The coat of arms, "Azure semy od fleurs de lis or a keep of the same surmounted by a banner gules charged with the words 'In turribus firma' in letters or a bordure of the same", with an the bordure embattled, is placed on the red shield under a golden mural crown.
The Fort Marie keep is a reference to the spurious etymology of the name of the town; there is neither archeological nor historical evidence of such a fort.
The coat of arms featured on the monument commemorating the defence of Formerie during the Franco-Prussian War (photo) shows the keep flying a flag, which seems to have been subsequently replaced by a scroll. Fleus-de-lis are not visible on the monument.