Legio Patria Nostra [The Legion is our Homeland]

–Legion motto., The Mummy (novelization)

The French Foreign Legion is a unit in the French Army.


Founded by Louis Philippe on March 10, 1831, the French Foreign Legion was set up as a branch of the French Armed Forces for foreigners wishing to serve in the French armies. The Legion was intended initially as a means of taking troublemakers and criminals from French society and causing them to act on behalf of France, fighting off its enemies.

Open to any nationality, the majority of the Legion's troops came from other non-French nations including England, Spain, Germany and Russia, but came from America as well. Convicted felons may not join the service, and background checks have been recently added as a procedure. As a condition of service in the Legion, applicants are given a chance to serve under an assumed named and are expected to speak French within their garrison.

One particular garrison set up in Algeria, headed by Colonel Guizot, had learned of an ancient necropolis known as Hamunaptra that was said to be teeming with golden treasures. The entire garrison had believed so much in Hamunaptra that they, without orders, marched through Libya and into Egypt to find the ruins, finding death instead by an army of Tuaregs that decimated all the troops as Guizot himself ran off on his horse. Two survivors left the ruins alive: the newly-instated Corporal Rick O'Connell and Beni Gabor, a foot soldier; O'Connell walked off into the deserts in search of civilisation while Beni waited for the gunshots to end before helping himself to a few of the deceased troops' camels. For years afterward, O'Connell's rank as Colonel would be cited in periodicals that left out Guizot's desertion.[1]



Notes and references

  1. The Mummy Returns (novelization), p10: "Temple of Doom"
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