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By Dave O' Malley If I had a dollar for every time someone asked me, during a tour of Vintage Wings of Canada or at an air show: “Whaddya call that bullseye thingamajig there?

” or “How come the bullseye on the wing has no white in it like the bullseye on the side of the plane?

This article tries to explain some of the history and demonstrate the use of the various roundel styles over the years.

I do so at great risk of being labelled a seriously unbalanced, basement-dwelling aerogeek, lost in minutia and losing sight of the big picture.

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The cockade is a knot of ribbon, or other circular- or oval-shaped symbol of distinctive national colours which was usually worn on a soldier's clothing, in particular on head gear.Photo via Steven Bradley, illustration via Mikhail Bykov @ Wings Palette There was a short period immediately after the adoption of the French-style cockade to identify Royal Flying Corps aircraft, when both devices were employed – in the case of this recently downed Royal Aircraft Factory B.E.2c of 12 Squadron, Royal Flying Corps, it was roundels on the fuselage and Union Jacks under the wings.” or “Doesn't Canada have a maple leaf in their bullseye?”, I would be able to afford my own bullseye-emblazoned Spitfire.In the 18th and 19th century, various European states used cockades to denote the nationalities of their military.

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