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Soviet marshals Zhukov and Rokossovsky with red double lampasses in 1945

Lampasse(s) (German: Lampasse(n)) are trouser stripes adorning the dress uniforms of many armed forces, police, fire and other public uniformed services. In German-speaking countries the uniforms of general staff–qualified officers featured distinctive double-wide lampasses.[1]

For a comparable feature of civilian dress, see galloon.

Ancient Scythians often decorated the seams of their trousers with lampasse-like elements,[2] but the modern fad for lampasses originated in civilian fashion in the early years of the 19th century and soon passed into military use - by 1815 in Prussia, for example.


The lampasses of the General Staff–qualified officers up to colonel were in carmine. However general uniforms featured lampasses in corps colour (German: Waffenfarbe.), e.g. Air Force in Skyblue.

For general officers of the German Bundeswehr the tradition to use lampasses was given up[3] in 1956. However, general officers of the National People's Army, Volkspolizei and Stasi, as well as flag officers of the Volksmarine wore double-wide lampasses on uniform trousers in the appropriate corps colour until 1990.

See also

In Germany today the general officers of the Bundespolizei wear double-wide Lampasses in deep green.

Historical examples[edit]

Lampasses today[edit]

Lampasses are worn even today in a large number of national armed forces on dress uniform, full dress uniform, or duty uniform of general officers. The gold-coloured lampasses of the US-Cavalry is also well known.

See also[edit]

Sources / references[edit]

  1. ^ BROCKHAUS Encyclopaedia in 24 Volumes, volume 13: ISBN 3-7653-3673-4, 2001, p. 27. (in German)
  2. ^ Тороп, С.О. (17 February 2010). "Скіфський одяг" Історія Нікопольщини - Давня історія (in Ukrainian). Retrieved 17 June 2023. Нерідко шкіряні штани прикрашалися «лампасами» і різноманітними вишивками.
  3. ^ Word and tradition in the German Army (de: Heer), by Transfeldt – v. Brand – Quenstedt, 6th increased edition, Hamburg 11 H.G. Schulz 1967, p. 55/§76, Lampasse