Los 40 USA
Sign in to commentAPP
spainSPAINchileCHILEcolombiaCOLOMBIAusaUSAmexicoMEXICOlatin usaLATIN USAamericaAMERICA


Why is a rooster the symbol of France? The reason why they wear “Le coq” on their jerseys

The rooster is almost an extension of the coat of arms of France and French identity, but what is its origin and what does it really represent?

The rooster is almost an extension of the coat of arms of France and French identity, but what is its origin and what does it really represent?

When thinking about France, and specifically about the French football team, although it also happens with rugby or handball, the image of the rooster comes to mind. This almost unconscious relationship between France and Rooster has its origins in one of the many linguistic coincidences that have taken place over the centuries.

This particular one is due to the play on words between Gaul and rooster, which the Latin word ‘gallus’ refers to both. This can be verified in the old Gallic coins, which adopted the rooster as a symbol of great importance in their national identity, although this has not always been the case over time.

More information

Historical tour

Despite the fact that in the Middle Ages it disappeared from the French collective imagination, in the 14th century, Germany recovered it, precisely, evoking France. From this century on, the rooster would accompany the French king on coins, engravings and all kinds of representations that had to do with the Crown or French identity.

In addition, during the French Revolution, the symbol of the rooster would gain greater importance in France, as can be seen in numerous national stamps. An attempt was made by a commission of State advisers to get Napoleon I to adopt the symbol of the rooster, but he rejected it because it did not represent sufficient power of an empire such as the French one.

His grandson Napoleon III would also reject it but it would become a symbol of the Third French Republic and during the 19th century and early 20th century. With World War I, the French rooster would be the opposite of the German eagle, which is why it once again acquired an importance that would remain established to this day.

Importance in ‘Les Bleus’

The French football team has carried the rooster on its chest for almost 120 years, when it made its debut against Belgium in 1904, becoming one of the symbols of greater representation, also in sporting terms, of the French identity, being one of the banners of the 1998 World Champion France, held precisely on French soil.

In that same World Cup, the mascot could not have been another and the Footix rooster was chosen, dressed in the colors of the French flag, as the main representative of the country. The meaning of the animal, almost sacred in France, is ‘faith and light’, due to the morning crow of the rooster, which represents “the triumph over darkness and evil”, a motto that the French athletes hold dear as a symbol of triumph.