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Zouave

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Zouave is the name given to certain infantry regiments in the French army.

The corps was first raised in Algeria in 1831 with one and later two battalions, and recruited solely from the Zouaoua, a tribe of Berbers, dwelling in the mountains of the Jurjura range (see Kabyles). In 1838 a third battalion was raised, and the regiment thus formed was commanded by Lamoriciere. Shortly afterwards the formation of the Tirailleurs algeriens, the Turcos, as the corps for natives, changed the enlistment for the Zouave battalions, and they became, as they now remain, a purely French body. Three regiments were formed in 1852, and a fourth, the Zouaves of the Imperial Guard, in 1854. The Crimean War was the first service which the regiments saw outside Algeria.


The Papal Zouaves were formed in defence of the Papal states by Lamoriciere in 1860. After the occupation of Rome by Victor Emmanuel in 1870, the Papal Zouaves served the government of National Defence in France during the Franco-Prussian War, and were disbanded after the entrance of German troops into Paris.
Several Zouave Regiments were organized from American soldiers who adopted the name and the North African inspired uniforms during the American Civil War.



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