Biggles' medals

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Biggles' medals

Postby Grunt » 24 Nov 2017, 16:41

I have tried to compile a list of the medals I believe Biggles was entitled to and/or are referred to in the books.

Here I have my initial attempt to depict the medals and ribbons as he may have worn them.

Medals:
Medals.JPG
Biggles Medals


Ribbons:
Ribbons.JPG
Biggles Ribbons


They are shown in the correct order of wear, although it is highly unlikely in reality that anyone actually would have been awarded such a diverse grouping.

I will detail which medals they are and why they are included:

Distinguished service order - Biggles & Co. refers to Major Bigglesworth DSO DFC
Military Cross - The Camels are Coming
Distinguished flying cross - Biggles & Co. refers to Major Bigglesworth DSO DFC. Since this was evidently awarded for WW1 service, it is shown with the pre-1919 ribbon with horizontal stripes.

The British War Medal 1914-20 - anyone with WW1 service as described in the various books covering that period was entitled to the British War Medal and the Victory Medal (commonly nicknamed "Mutt and Jeff" by veterans)
The Victory Medal

The 1939-45 Star with Battle of Britain clasp. - Spitfire Parade
Air crew Europe star - Various books including Spitfire Parade, Biggles in the Baltic, Biggles Defies the Swastika
Africa Star - Biggles Sweeps the Desert
Burma star - Biggles in Borneo and Biggles in the Orient
Italy star? - Not 100% of entitlement to this as service in Italy was covert, however, Biggles Secret Agent
War Medal 1939–1945 with Mention in dispatches oak leaf - Biggles in the Baltic

Maltovian Order of St Peter - Biggles Goes to War
In reality Maltovia is a fictional country and no such award exists. However, I have found online a picture of a medal "The Princely Order of St Peter", an award from Montenegro. I have taken the liberty of adopting this for the Maltovian award.
The-Princely-Order-of-St-Peter-back.jpg
The Princely Order of St Peter
The-Princely-Order-of-St-Peter-back.jpg (22.57 KiB) Viewed 411 times
Last edited by Grunt on 26 Nov 2017, 00:13, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Biggles' medals

Postby Kismet » 24 Nov 2017, 16:53

Wow. They look really impressive lined up together like that.

Biggles nearly got the Iron Cross, too, in Flies East.
'Major Bigglesworth' said Von Stalhein coldly, 'there are times when I seriously wonder if you were created by the devil just to annoy me.'
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Re: Biggles' medals

Postby Frecks » 24 Nov 2017, 16:58

Yes that is very impressive.
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Re: Biggles' medals

Postby HostileCacti » 24 Nov 2017, 21:00

Kismet wrote:Wow. They look really impressive lined up together like that.

Biggles nearly got the Iron Cross, too, in Flies East.


He deserved it too. He did something truly tremendous.
He has a very fascinating personality.
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Re: Biggles' medals

Postby Foolscap » 24 Nov 2017, 21:37

A fascinating collection:-)
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Re: Biggles' medals

Postby OzBiggles1963 » 25 Nov 2017, 06:35

Wow, awesome dedication & research by you! As WEJ used to say "Truth is stranger than fiction", & it appears the only Englishman to ever receive an Iron Cross was Eddie Chapman, a professional criminal & 'safe cracker', i.e. for services rendered to Germany as a spy in WW2:

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/femail/artic ... Cross.html
They've been working together for so long that each seems to know by a sort of telepathy when another is in trouble. One never seems to get them together. Get one & the others come after him. To give the devil his due they make a formidable team.
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Re: Biggles' medals

Postby Grunt » 25 Nov 2017, 06:52

I only recently heard about Eddie Chapman. Turns out he is a distant relative on my mum’s side! Of course his was the WW2 version whereas Biggles had he received it would have had the style issued in WW1.

We could use some literary licence and assume the proposed Iron Cross in Flies East was actually awarded. It would be a very interesting addition indeed. Although since that was under a different name it probably still would not be appropriate to add to what he would wear (unless it was a deliberate ploy to annoy Von Stalhein!)
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Re: Biggles' medals

Postby Tracer » 25 Nov 2017, 11:10

A fine piece of research - thanks very much. Seeing the actual medals and ribbons all together is pretty impressive.
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Re: Biggles' medals

Postby kylie_koyote » 25 Nov 2017, 13:43

Thank you, that's lovely and very interesting.

Somewhere in my parents' home (I've looked and can't find it, but I know it's there) is a box with my great-grandfather's WW1 ribbons and such. He was a chaplain, so his are different from the ones earned in active combat. I need to search further, because I know the good folks on this forum would be interested, but I haven't seen it in years and have exhausted all the usual hiding places.
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Re: Biggles' medals

Postby 266 » 25 Nov 2017, 20:36

Beautifully done. My only query: was the DFC for WW1? I'd thought he finished that war with DSO and MC. Will look a bit further...
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Re: Biggles' medals

Postby Grunt » 26 Nov 2017, 00:00

Regarding the DSO, MC, DFC and MID, WEJ was a little inconsistent in which awards he listed Biggles as having. In various books he referred to various awards. MC was the most consistent and probably the first mentioned in terms of both when actual books were written and the timeline chronology of the stories. I only found DFC mentioned once, in Biggles and Co.

The MID is based on Raymond saying at the end of “In the Baltic” that he would recommend Biggles for a Mention in Dispatches.

Technically, other than the Maltovian award in Goes to War, there is never a mention of him actually receiving an award, simply passing mention of him having this or that award.
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Re: Biggles' medals

Postby RAAF Spitfire Girl » 26 Nov 2017, 06:43

Many thanks for pulling this together, Grunt. Very interesting and seeing them mounted was a visual treat.
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Re: Biggles' medals

Postby Fairblue » 26 Nov 2017, 10:48

I thought I'd already responded but seeing haven't. This is superb, Grunt. It looks an impressive selection. Great research.
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Re: Biggles' medals

Postby Rumpity » 17 Dec 2017, 12:01

Great work!
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