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An 'aiguillette' cadet receiving instruction from a sergeant of the Compagnies franches de la Marine in New France, 1750-1755

Caption: An 'aiguillette' cadet receiving instruction from a sergeant of the Compagnies franches de la Marine in New France, 1750-1755

Cadets were generally sons of serving or former officers who were paid as common soldiers. They learned the trade of a soldier and were promoted to officer rank if they showed promise. The young man being trained in this picture wears the characteristic blue and white shoulder cord known as an 'aiguillette' that gave rise to the nickname 'cadets of the aiguillette'. The sergeant also has rank markings on his uniform. He wears gold lace edging on his coat's cuffs and pocket flaps. Reconstruction by Eugène Lelièpvre.