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 Post subject: German bugle 1914 - JR 78
PostPosted: Sat Nov 11, 2006 1:11 pm 
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Have recently bought a German ww1 bugle. It's maker marked CW MORITZ BERLIN and dated 1914. There's a nice big prussian eagle plate to the top. According to the seller its also stamped IR78 but the I looks alot more like a J to me. I'm right to think that this is Jaeger Regiment 78 am I?

Does anyone know if a Jaeger Regiment would carry a bugle - I thought it was just infantry but I'm no doubt wrong.

It's a bit battered and is probably a battlefield pick up. An old inscription to the top can't really be made out but for the words 'MATZEN COUTURE'. I ran a search and found that MATZEN and Couture were two ancient German and French families respectively. If I can make out any more when I receive it I'll let you know. Does anyone know what this might mean?

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Simon


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PostPosted: Sat Nov 11, 2006 1:21 pm 
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Simon,

When referring to infantry regiments and a few other things the Germans interchange the letters I and J.
Image
so letters J78 indicate infantry Regiment number 78. There was no prewar Jager battalion with that high of a number.

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PostPosted: Sat Nov 11, 2006 1:24 pm 
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I see! So this will apply to my 1916 dated tornister backback thats marked JR aswell?

I've been collecting for years now - how did I never find that out!

:oops:


Cheers,

Simon


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PostPosted: Sat Nov 11, 2006 2:04 pm 
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Simon:

The German language does not substitute "J" for "I" or vice versa. Simply put, the form is used solely to distinguish between a large capital "I" and small capital. German nouns are always capitalized, and you will not see this style "I" anywhere but at the beginning of a word. Think of it as an "I" with a tail.

This is an example of a true "J" for Jäger. Note the Serif.

Image

The style and form of letters evolves. I am certain most of us are familiar with the archaic English "S" resembling an "F." ƒ

It is nothing more than a calligraphic embellishment.

Chas.

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Last edited by Lost Skeleton on Mon Nov 13, 2006 1:20 pm, edited 2 times in total.

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PostPosted: Sat Nov 11, 2006 2:24 pm 
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Quote:
you will not see this style "I" anywhere but at the beginning of a word.


It gets tough when you start talking about abbreviations. Especially when there is no accepted standard in the spelling of words. Nor was there an accepted standard in penmanship styles. Here is an example:
Bekleidunginstandsetung
Bekleidingsinstandsetung
Bekleidings Instandsetung

All three of these seem to be abbreviated as BJA but it would not surprise me to find it another way.

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PostPosted: Sat Nov 11, 2006 2:45 pm 
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joerookery wrote:
abbreviated as BJA

Hi Joe:

Fair enough, but my point was the letter is, and always has been, an "I." To type "BJA" is technically incorrect. "BIA" is correct. You don't find Germans typing Jch, Jnfektion, Jnstinkt, etc.

At the risk of being obdurate, I further disagree that variations in military boilerplate constitute "no accepted standard in the spelling of words." To err is human, and Germans are blessed with dictionaries.

However, you may be right. I have searched in vain to find "Instandsetung," but the closest I came was Instandsetzung.

Chas.:scratch:

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PostPosted: Sat Nov 11, 2006 3:32 pm 
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Thanks Chaps.

In Infantry Regiments, Buglers were regular infantrymen who fought like the others but who played their comrades into battle. I know they had the 'swallows wings' insignia on their tunic sleeves. Am I right?

Simon


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PostPosted: Sat Nov 11, 2006 4:12 pm 
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Chas,

I have no problem with what you're saying about I and J. however I'm always in the minority so it seems.

Quote:
At the risk of being obdurate, I further disagree that variations in military boilerplate constitute "no accepted standard in the spelling of words." To err is human, and Germans are blessed with dictionaries.


Yes there were dictionaries. The problem was that there were too many dictionaries.

In 1939 there finally was the joining of the German dictionaries under something called Trübners Deutsche Wörterbuch. This was done by the Study Group for German Word Research (Arbeitsgemeinschaft für deutsche Wortforschung). This try to put together not only spelling but also word meaning in the diverse German areas. Previous to this the largest dictionary was the Grimm Brothers dictionary -- -- yes the same Grimm Brothers -- -- but there were also Wörterbuch for regions such as Alsace-Lorraine, Bavaria, East Friedland, Rheinland-Pfalz as well as a high German Wörterbuch. In addition to these dictionaries there were things called Mundart which were really dictionaries of dialect such as the Wörterbuch der Elsässischen Mundarten. These diverse dictionaries highlighted differences in word meaning and spelling. It drove the nation nuts so they finally pulled it all together.
I think that chapter 6 of Alon Confino's book "The Nation As a Local Metaphor" gives a fair rundown of some of this. It drives me nuts all the time.

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PostPosted: Sat Nov 11, 2006 6:27 pm 
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Simon: A point to keep in mind, Jaeger units in the pre-war Imperial German army were battalion size, Infantry units were regimental in size.
Equipment marked to Jaeger battalions will typically be J.B. followed by a number or J. followed by a number. Line infantry regiment markings will typically be I.R. followed by the number of the regiment (see Lost Skeleton's comments above on the shape of the letters)

Reservist1


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PostPosted: Sat Nov 11, 2006 6:41 pm 
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Cheers,

things are starting to become a bit clearer - so we've established that its from an IR. I'm afraid my incredible ignorance regarding such aspects is starting to shine through...

I wonder if someone could tell me a bit more about the role of a bugler in an infantry regiment. How did they differ from the regular infantryman, what was their role in battle etc?

Many thanks,

Simon


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 Post subject: the little I know
PostPosted: Mon Nov 13, 2006 5:33 pm 
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I have done a little research on this ,and i mean a little. Most buglers were traines as soldiers .They did not wear the swallows nest's in the feild post 1914 .Thier job was for signaling and the bugles I have seen in pics were used till as late as 1916 ,not that common that late . O ther's will probably correct my info but that is what I have gathered . The swallows nest's have hooks to ad and remove them to the tunics .
MArk


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PostPosted: Mon Nov 13, 2006 6:20 pm 
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Thanks alot Mark.

Regarding your information that bugles were used as late as 1916, I did in my searches turn up some info from a military museum website of a British regiment which features a 1915 dated Saxon bugle which was picked up from the battlefield after the repulse of a German attack near Rheims in July 1918. This suggests that Bugles were still in use, although it seems hard to picture the carnage and unrecognisable face of war by 1918 as having room for bugles.

So buglers were trained infantrymen that attacked alongside the infantry?

I have found a picture in osprey's the German Army in WW1 of a bugler and his comrades but he has no rifle...

Simon


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PostPosted: Wed Nov 15, 2006 9:14 am 
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Period photos that I have indicate that buglers, as well as marching drummers, were armed with pistols. Their wearing of swallow nests seems to be inconsistent but did continue well into the war.

I would be happy to share some photos if I could email them to a member for posting.

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PostPosted: Wed Nov 15, 2006 6:52 pm 
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Some pictures from George
Image
Image
Image
Quote:
attached are three photos; two guys with marching drums and wearing artillery lugers slung across their shoulders; the other is a German trench raiding party with Canadian POW's. Note the bandsman with the Luger on a bread bag strap stuffed into his pocket.


I tried to find some clarification in Major Menzel's but did not find it in a cursory look. One thing I did find is that the musicians were called Spielleute and they came in four flavors: Tamboure, Trumpeter, Hornisten, and hoboisten. Freidag splits them up into two kinds: musicians and drummers with 10 musicians and three drummers per infantry Regiment. It is not clear to me how exactly they were used however some of the testimonials and Jack Sheldon's books leads you to believe that they were assigned out to squads and used as stretcher bearers and first aid helpers. There were also bands with all sorts of instruments certainly amounting to more than 10 per Regiment. I don't know if these were assigned musicians or some sort of volunteer band. In the field regulation it shows the position of the musicians in different formations but does not mention their armament or function.
Image

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Last edited by joerookery on Thu Nov 16, 2006 12:26 am, edited 1 time in total.

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PostPosted: Wed Nov 15, 2006 8:29 pm 
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An interesting wartime photo of UR19...


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PostPosted: Thu Nov 16, 2006 8:32 am 
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Cheers fellas,

Having had a good look at the inscription on the bugle, it is in fact 'METZ - EN - COUTURE', a village in the pas de calais. The village was captured by the 10th and 11th King's Royal Rifle Corps on the 4th and 5th April, 1917, evacuated on the 23rd March, 1918, and retaken by the 1st Otago Regiment on the following 6th September. It was noted for its extensive system of underground cellars.

As well as the JR 78 stamping, it has also been stamped, presumably at a later date with RJR 220 or 229 (its hard to tell which) and _ _ K (Company stamping?)

Simon


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PostPosted: Fri Nov 17, 2006 12:23 pm 
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Lost Skeleton wrote:
Hi Joe:

Fair enough, but my point was the letter is, and always has been, an "I." To type "BJA" is technically incorrect. "BIA" is correct. You don't find Germans typing Jch, Jnfektion, Jnstinkt, etc.


Chas,

Found a couple of these this morning -- drives me nuts -- it is letter I but...
Image
Image
Image

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PostPosted: Wed Nov 29, 2006 10:03 pm 
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My understanding is that drummers and buglers (who doubled as fifers) were regular military personnel, while the members of the marching band were hired. Line infantry regiments had 2 drummers and 2 buglers per company, Guard regiments had 3 of each per company.
Steve


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PostPosted: Wed Dec 27, 2006 11:14 pm 
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Simon,

One other less obvious thing about the unit marking on your bugle is that there were no Jäger regiments in 1914 and later when such regiments were formed, there never was a 78.Jäger Regiment.

Just for grins, there was a 78.R.R.K. (Reserve Radfahr Komp.).

Chip

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PostPosted: Sun May 31, 2009 1:47 pm 
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I was asked by someone reviewing the forthcoming book, to call up this old thread and explain this paragraph from my introduction. It might interest you.

Quote:
One of the single most frustrating English language anomalies when dealing with imperial Germany is that the language was not standard. One could not just look things up in the dictionary. This is a myth that takes some background. There were a slew of dictionaries and official language uses that followed state or dialectic lines. There were dictionaries of the different dialects called Mundart such as the Wörterbuch der Elsässischen Mundarten. In 1876 Prussia tried to bring this together, but the attempt was rejected by the various states. In 1879 Bavaria published their own grammar guide, followed by Austria and Prussia a year later. Using the Bavarian and Prussian rules Konrad Duden published a more widely accepted dictionary. This spread slowly and it was not accepted by the states, except for Württemberg. The General German Language Association was founded in 1885 well after the foundation of the empire. In order to make sure a uniform grammar and spelling was adopted in all German speaking states including Austria and Switzerland in June 1901 a second conference was called to further spelling and grammar reform (“Beratungen über die Einheitlichkeit der deutschen Rechtschreibung).“ Better known as II Orthographische Konferenz this received a much wider reception and in 1901 a lot of "th" were abolished and replaced by simple "t"(e.g. Thal or Fürstenthum). In several words and names (except Cassel and Cöln) "c" was replaced by "k". Many other letter "c" in words with a French background were turned into "z". The letter "i" with longer pronunciation were replaced by "ie". The standards became generally accepted and turned into official regulations by December 1902. However, the Kaiser initially opposed the change and official documents were supposed to be submitted written in both forms until 1911. The changes were not adopted by many publishers who did not wish to change their typeset. In theory this was not fixed until 1939 by the Study Group for German Word Research (Arbeitsgemeinschaft für deutsche Wortforschung). That is why you may find different spelling in texts written between 1871 and 1918. There was an unbelievably convoluted way for alphabetization that is often encountered where certain letter groups such as "sch" were treated as a single letter. There were also other anomalies.

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