Actual 51 mm size by Hughes Bovy, Geneve
At the heart of the design is the heraldic blazon of the majestic double-headed eagle, long associated as the symbol of power and dominion. Adorning an imperial crown of supremacy, the emblem is portrayed resting upon a sculptured branch depicting one of the earliest forms of firearm, the Arquebuse pistolet.
Upon its breast, the prominent blazon displays the coat of arms belonging to the cantonal city of Geneva, illustrated as the proud hosting venue of the glorious shooting competition.
JEU DE L’ARQUEBUSÉ FOUNDED EN MCCCCLXXV –
The Competitive Aarquebuse Shooting Society founded in 1475
Divine rays of illumination burst forth in all directions from the Swiss Cross, representing independence and liberty, the cherished values of the Confederacy. The coupled blazons depict the emblems of ‘Exercice de l'Arquebuse’ (founded 1475) and ‘Exercice de la Navigation’, at either side of the naval-anchor characterize the past lineage of their founding.
Trusting in the spirit of strength in unity, a merger was forged by the two shooting societies in the year of 1856. Celebrated as the combined arms of the ‘Les Exercices de l'Arquebuse et de la Navigation’.
Intricately ornate designs of standards of the societies, and laurel and oaken branches to be bestowed upon the champions of the shooting compete.
A ribbon with inscriptions weaved about the naval-anchor, Perkussionssrutzer rifle and matchlock musket. Past and present choices of sharpshooters at the Schuzenfest.
Pro D’eo Et Patria – For God & Country
Exercise Arquebuse was a shooting society from Geneva, Switzerland. It is one of the oldest shooting companies of the city, attested since 1475. It merged in 1856 with the Exercise of Navigation founded towards the middle of the seventeenth century to form the current Exercises of the Arquebuse and Navigation. At that time the "exercises" included what would be called today militiamen who trained in the defense of Geneva.
The company competes under the name of Arquebuse Geneva.
Its motto: "PRO DEO AND PATRIA"
Since the 15thCentury, numerous mentions are made in the archives of the state of Geneva concerning the exercise of the arquebuse then called the Couleuvriniers with regards to participation in shooting competitions, donations, feasts, marches, combats, and repairs carried out to the various buildings of the Coulouvrenière.
The confraternities (brotherhood relationships) of the Arbalestrians, the Hacquebutiers and other shooting societies show the continuation of this ancient military organization, which lasted effectively until the early years of the 16th century. The Genevan men of arms were divided into two camps at that time. The prince-Bishop of the abbey of Saint-Pierre, its guards and the former confraternities undoubtedly formed the first troops of Geneva.
During the 16thcentury, the importance of the former confraternities was considerably diminished by the creation of completely separate militia units under the orders of the Commune and the training of men fit to bear arms. The practice of the Harquebuse drew young people into its ranks in order to increase the numbers needed to defend the city from the enterprises of the House of Savoy.
In the 17thcentury, under constant threat of being annexed, the arquebusiers are always subject to the same duty and discipline of the previous century towards the defense of the Geneva. They also participated in shooting competitions more and more with their Swiss neighbours, strengthening the bonds of friendship. During this century, Geneva became a centre for the trade of arms and supplies. This century will be the introduction of extraordinary festivities, becoming pompous at its end, to glorifications of the old regime in the 18th century.
In recognition and celebration of the various illustrious contributions made by the Exercise Arquebuse competitive shooting society towards the growth and defense of the city-canton of Geneva.