Feu de joie

A feu de joie (French: "fire of joy") is a gun salute, described as a "running fire of guns", on occasions of public rejoicing of nation and/or ruling dynasty. It can also mean a bonfire lit in a public place as a token of joy.

During the 18th and 19th centuries it was used to mark a military victory or birthday.

Historical precedents

A spectacular feu de joie ran up and down double lines of infantrymen at Valley Forge, Pennsylvania on 6 May 1778 to celebrate America's alliance with France. It is re-enacted yearly.

Queen Victoria's proclamation as Empress of India in Delhi on 1 January 1877 was followed with a feu de joie described by Field Marshal Lord Roberts: "a salute of one hundred and one salvos of artillery was fired, with a feu-de-joie from the long line of troops. This was too much for the elephants. As the feu-de-joie approached nearer and nearer to them, they became more and more alarmed, and at last scampered off, dispersing the crowd in every direction."

A Captain Eben Williams witnessed a feu de joie during summer 1782 at West Point, to celebrate the birth of the Dauphin of France.

Recent example

As part of Queen Elizabeth II's 80th birthday celebrations, a spectacular feu-de-joie occurred on the Forecourt of Buckingham Palace on 17 June 2006 following the RAF flypast after Trooping the Colour. A cascade of rounds was fired by the Old Guard, the New Guard and six Half Companies of Street-Liners in the Forecourt of the Palace. The cascades of blank gunshots were interspersed with the National Anthem, God Save the Queen.

Although there was a feu-de-joie outside the Commonwealth buildings in Berlin, 1953 to mark her coronation, this was the first time in the Queen's reign that a feu de joie has been given in her presence.

After the feu de joie the troops on the Forecourt laid down their weapons, removed their headgear and gave "Three Cheers for Her Majesty The Queen".

External links

* [http://www.nps.gov/vafo/HISTORY/army.html 6 May, 1778, Valley Forge]
* [http://www.valleyforge.org/Visitors/index.cfm?action=05-French Valley Forge website describing historical reenactment of feu de joie]
* [http://www.fordham.edu/halsall/india/1877empressvictoria.html Marshal Lord Roberts's account of 1 January 1877, following the proclamation of Queen Victoria as Empress of India]
* [http://www.southcoastsar.org/feudejoie.htm Article giving Capt. Eben Williams's recollection of a feu de joie in 1782 celebrating the birth of the Dauphin of France]


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Synonyms:
/ (for holiday sport)


Look at other dictionaries:

  • Feu de joie — [F., lit., fire of joy.] A fire kindled in a public place in token of joy; a bonfire; a firing of guns in token of joy. [1913 Webster] …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • Feu de joie — ● Feu de joie feu allumé en signe de réjouissance …   Encyclopédie Universelle

  • feu de joie — public bonfire, French, lit. fire of joy …   Etymology dictionary

  • feu de joie — noun A celebratory salute made by firing guns into the air sequentially along a line. while Platte was rolling over and over on the turf, like a shot rabbit, the watch and guard flew from his waistcoat as an Infantry Majors sword hops out of the… …   Wiktionary

  • feu de joie —  (Fr.) Ceremonial salute with gunfire; pl. feux de joie …   Bryson’s dictionary for writers and editors

  • feu de joie — [ˌfə: də ʒwα:] noun (plural feux de joie pronunciation same) a rifle salute fired on a ceremonial occasion, each soldier firing in succession along the ranks. Origin Fr., lit. fire of joy …   English new terms dictionary

  • feu de joie — (French) fire of joy ; fire lit in a public place as a mark of joy; bonfire; firing of guns to symbolize joy …   English contemporary dictionary

  • feu de joie — [Fr.] 1. Bonfire. 2. Firing of guns (for holiday sport) …   New dictionary of synonyms

  • feu de joie —    fire of joy ; firing of guns as symbol of joy; bonfire …   Dictionary of difficult words

  • feu de joie — n. (pl. feux pronunc. same) a salute by firing rifles etc. on a ceremonial occasion. Etymology: F, = fire of joy …   Useful english dictionary

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