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Is it a Polish battledress?

Article about: I bought this battle dress blouse some time ago in England. It looks like an original 1945 issue (at least smells like it has spent 70 years in the humid basement) although I am not an exper

  1. #1
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    Default Is it a Polish battledress?

    I bought this battle dress blouse some time ago in England. It looks like an original 1945 issue (at least smells like it has spent 70 years in the humid basement) although I am not an expert. It has some collar patches removed, there are red threads on the shoulders and a hole after some badge. Can somebody help me identify if it's original 1945 BD? Is it possible it was once used by Polish Armed Forces in the West? I will be very thankful for help.

    Pics:
    Battle dress 1945 w Muzeum Kretoperz w MyViMu.com

  2. #2

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    Hello Esco and welcome to the forum.

    The tunic you have linked is a British Pattern 1940 Battledress. Yes its original but dated very late in the war so actual use in WWII unlikely, although this is definitely the type of tunic issued to Polish soldiers fighting out of the UK (In Italy for example). The name 'Zarzo' appears to be written on it? Is there any other markings/numbers?

    For future posts, try to upload the actual pics onto the forum, or take photos of the tunic in your possession (since you own it), as the link will disappear eventually, and the post will not be useful.

    Click to enlarge the picture Click to enlarge the picture Click image for larger version. 

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    Best regards,
    Chris

    "Knowledge rests not upon truth alone, but upon error also."
    Carl Jung

  3. #3
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    Thank you for quick reply and warm welcome

    I am happy I made a good purchase. Now it is just need to find original set of patches and badges to bring this baby back to life. It would be good to find out who was (is?) the mysterious "Zarzo". Unfortunately there are no other marks on BD.

    Btw. I can't find an option attach pictures, maybe it's because I am using a mobile device?

  4. #4

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    Quote by Esco View Post
    . . . Btw. I can't find an option attach pictures, maybe it's because I am using a mobile device?
    Hello Esco, and welcome aboard.

    New picture posting feature - How to guide !

    Cheers,
    Tony
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    All thoughts and opinions expressed are those of my own and should not be mistaken for medical and/or legal advice.

    "Tomorrow hopes we have learned something from yesterday." - John Wayne

  5. #5
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    After close examination the battle dress revealed more information, and unfortunately more questions for me...

    I have closely checked for removed insignia and found some visible traces (where I am almost sure there was something) and some possible traces (there was something or it was just some hungry moth).

    Results:

    TORSO
    - Epaulets - possible traces, most likely 2 stars missing each
    - Collar - visible threads leftovers beneath, reveals missing patches
    - Visible hole above left pocket, probably after a Polish 2nd Corps badge
    - Probable trace of a badge on a left pocket
    - Inside left pocket a number "539" (most likely modern)
    - Inside right pocket - bonus - I have found a star (pictures attached)

    LEFT SLEEVE
    - Red thread leftovers, almost sure it was a "Poland" patch
    - Traces of a small shield-shaped insignia, almost sure it was Polish 2nd Corps patch

    RIGH SLEEVE
    - Red thread leftovers, most likely also after "Poland" patch
    - Probable traces of some other patch below, maybe an 8th Army patch
    - Visible traces below of a round shaped insignia, diameter approx 4-5 cm, probably with a pin in the centre - missing badge or patch?

    So now the real head ache for me.

    Do you know which divisional unit could wear such badges (or patches) on a right sleeve?
    Maybe Armoured Division (Znal Pancerny), like the ones shown here: Polish Regimental Badges WW2

    Or maybe something else (Commando patch?).

    I would be very thankful for your help!

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  6. #6
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    + some more pics
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  7. #7

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    Hello,

    Yes there are always questions with our collected historical items. this is (to me) a big part of what makes the hobby so great!

    I am not very knowledgeable with Polish items, but I do know a little bit about the British and Commonwealth armies - I have to ask why you are quite convinced its been used by a Polish soldier? The name 'Zarzo' is surely Spanish or perhaps Italian? Remember there are many British Insignia's that are also red and in various shapes and sizes.

    I feel this great tunic will always keep us guessing!
    Best regards,
    Chris

    "Knowledge rests not upon truth alone, but upon error also."
    Carl Jung

  8. #8
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    Hello,

    Couple of things make me think there's a good chance it was Polish actually:
    - The seller of the item indicated it was Polish
    - Clear traces of patches whitch match perfectly Polish Armed Forces insignia (like 2nd corps siren shield - I do not know about same size and shape left arm patch in a British divisional unit)
    - Some traces of patches do not match typical British issue (like collar patches, which seems rather typical Polish rhomboid shape)

    The name "Zarzo" also sound Spanish to me. However if we take a second thought and look at it as an abbrevition or a nick name, it could be a Polish last name.

    I am interested in Polish WWII militaria but I am not an expert like you guys, therefore maybe I missed something. At this point I am about 80% sure it was Polish.

  9. #9
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    Just to update on the topic, I have restored the battledress as part of 5 Kresowy Batalion Saperów (5 bsap) collection. I used original insignia which in my opinion compose better on the tunic than scattered separately on the display. Posting here the pic, just in case I decide to part with it some day. If you're a "puritan" colletctor and you'll come across it - beware, this is a put together item by Esco

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  10. #10

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    Hello Esco,

    Just to let you know the ribbon bars are upside down as re your first photograph

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    Best wishes

    Andrzej

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