Armistice Day - November 11, 1918

Remembrance Day, or Armistice Day as it’s known in France, is a time to come together and remember those who lost their lives during wars.

November 11, 1918 - Armistice Agreement that ended the First World War.

November 11 is the date on which was signed the Armistice agreement that ended the First World War in 1918. This national holiday honours the memory of soldiers who died in combat during this conflict. A ceremony takes place at the Arc de Triomphe in Paris where the French president lays a wreath at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier. This ritual is respected and repeated in the cemeteries and military memorials of the Great War throughout France as well as at communal war memorials. Moreover, two minutes of silence and the ringing of bells in all French villages are usually observed at 11:00 a.m., to remember the fallen.

Bleuet de France: the symbol of national solidarity

Following the disaster of the First World War, a French citizen’s mobilization was set up in favour of a material, economic and human reconstruction.Charlotte Malleterre and Suzanne Leenhardt, two French nurses, decided to collect funds to help the disabled and wounded soldiers. Made at the Invalides and sold in the streets of Paris, the cornflower was chosen because it is one of the only flowers to grow on the battlefields and reminds the blue of the uniform of the French troops — “les poilus.” Today, this flower symbolizes the values of respect, peace and tolerance. It is notably worn in France on May 8 (end of the Second World War), November 11 and July 14 (National Day).

What program for 2021?

Remembrance in Paris

In 2021, French President Emmanuel Macron marks the 103rd anniversary of the Armistice by relighting the flame at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier under Paris’s Arc de Triomphe. A national tribute is also paid at the Mont Valerien to Hubert Germain, the last companion of the liberation who died on October 12, 2021, at the age of 101.

The Great War Museum celebrates its 10th anniversary

On this occasion of its tenth anniversary, the Great War Museum in Paris wishes to honour the approach of the 2,000 donors who have contributed to the enrichment of the collections. Indeed, the 30,000 objects brought together in this exhibition will engage in a dialogue with the permanent route.

More information (External link)

Forest Conservation at Canada's First World War Memorials

Thousands of Canadians and Newfoundlanders went to France to serve in the First World War. Many of them never returned. The Canadian National Vimy Memorial (External link) and the Beaumont-Hamel Newfoundland Memorial (External link) in France are designed to honour them.

As we mark the 85th anniversary of the unveiling of the Canadian National Vimy Memorial in 2021, the forest and trees surrounding these two Canadian national historic sites have come to represent rebirth and peace. Canada, to whom the two sites were ceded by France, is committed to conserving and regenerating the precious forests of Vimy and Beaumont-Hamel. This project will preserve a legacy of the history of both France and Canada - and our promise to always remember - for future generations.

Learn more about the sites and the pledge in this video (External link)

Idea for a stay

Follow on a 35-kilometer bike ride through key remembrance sites in Northern France: the Canadian Memorial of Vimy, the German military cemetery of Maison Blanche, the 14-18 Memorial of Notre-Dame de Lorette and the spectacular Ring of Remembrance, the ruined towers of the abbey church of Mont-Saint-Eloi...

More information (External link)