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1000ydstare
12-30-2006, 05:38 AM
Q1. Was there a Sergeant Major General in any army or armed force/police etc., other than the fictious rank given to Harry Flashman by the Queen of Madegascar in the series books of the same name?

Correct answers win my adoration.

BDL
12-30-2006, 04:14 PM
Yes - hence Lieutenant Generals outranking Major Generals...

Surely?

2nd of foot
01-02-2007, 09:40 AM
As I understand it the rank structure has evoloved over the years and has been shortaned for eas of use.

You had generals but then you had lots of generals but no royalty to command them so you had a senior general, a captain general.

I think that Brigadier is French for corpral, so you have a corpral general followed by a sergeant major general then a leutenant general and a captain general. The field marshal came late on when Wesley got his.

pdf27
01-02-2007, 12:20 PM
Wiki starting point: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sergeant_Major_General

Most references to it I can find relate to the English Civil War - an example would be Lawrence Crawford, Sergeant Major General of Foot in the Parliamentary Armies. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lawrence_Crawford

I may not be much cop as a historian, but my google-fu is strong :D

pdf27
01-02-2007, 12:21 PM
I think that Brigadier is French for corpral, so you have a corpral general followed by a sergeant major general then a leutenant general and a captain general. The field marshal came late on when Wesley got his.
Brigadier is from a Florentine word, itself derived from the Latin word for Bridge.

1000ydstare
01-02-2007, 12:50 PM
Brigadier is believed to have come from Brigade, the unit he would command. Which itself comes from Old French for "company", or Old Italian "brigata", from "brigare", to fight, from "briga", strife, of Celtic origin.


The brigade was invented as a tactical unit, by the Swedish king and conqueror Gustavus Adolphus. It was introduced during the Thirty Years' War to overcome the normal army structure, consisting of regiments. The term derives from Italian brigata or Old French brigare, meaning "company", which in turn derives from a Celtic root briga, which means "strife".

The so-called "brigada" was a mixed unit, comprising infantry, cavalry and normally artillery too, designated for a special task. The size of such "brigada" was a reinforced company up to two regiments. The "brigada" was the ancient form of the nowadays "task force". This was copied in France by general Turenne, who made it a permanent unit, requiring the creation in 1667 of a permanent rank of brigadier des armées du roi, who took over the brigade command from the Colonel or the Mestre du camp, under the command of the Maréchal de camp (the original Field Marshal), who would in time be rebaptised Général de brigade.

From http://www.answers.com/topic/brigade

1000ydstare
01-02-2007, 12:59 PM
But in answer to the above question.


Sergeant Major General is a now extinct military rank that can trace its origins to the Middle Ages. Originally simply Sergeant Major, the title signified a general officer, commander of an army's infantry and typically third in command of the army as a whole (after the Lieutenant General and Captain General); he also acted as a sort of chief of staff.

Early in the 17th century, individual regiments began appointing their own Sergeant Majors to perform a similar role on a smaller scale (these would evolve into modern-day Majors): the older, senior position became known as Sergeant Major General to distinguish it.

Over the course of the 17th century, the increasing professionalisation of armies saw Sergeant Major General become the most junior of the general ranks. At the same time, the Sergeant portion of the title was more and more commonly dropped; by the early 18th century, the rank's name had been permanently shortened to Major General.

Since Sergeant Major General had previously ranked below a Lieutenant General, the new rank of Major General appeared to create a precedence issue, in that a Major outranked a Lieutenant but a Lieutenant General now outranked a Major General. Within some militaries this oversight has not been modified and continues into the present day.[quote]

[quote]In the 16th century, the sergeant major was a general officer. He commanded an army's infantry, and ranked about third in the army's command structure; he also acted as a sort of chief of staff to the army's commander.

In the 17th century, sergeants major appeared in individual regiments. These were field officers, third in command of their regiments (after their colonels and lieutenant colonels), with a role similar to the older, army-level sergeants major (although obviously on a smaller scale). The older position became known as sergeant major general to distinguish it. Over time, the sergeant was dropped from both titles, giving rise to the modern ranks of major and major general.

The full title of sergeant major fell out of use until the latter part of the 18th century, when it began to be applied to the senior non-commissioned officer of an infantry battalion or cavalry regiment.

It is about this time that the U.S. and British histories of the title diverge, with the American Revolutionary War.



From wiki.

1000ydstare
01-02-2007, 01:02 PM
Q2. What are Staff Sergeant Majors?

SS Tiger
01-03-2007, 04:00 AM
Q2. What are Staff Sergeant Majors?


A: Staff Sergeant Majors

:mrgreen::mrgreen::mrgreen:

PLT.SGT.BAKER
01-04-2007, 11:02 AM
It's a rank held by the British Army held by warrent officers.

2nd of foot
01-15-2007, 07:08 PM
It's a rank held by the British Army held by warrent officers.

Now you have open a big can of worms.

Officer are given a royal commotion (commissioned officers)

Warrant officers are given a royal warrant (warrant officers)

There are now two basic grades of WO, after WW1 for a short time there was a third one who commanded a Platoon.

WO2 is the lowest and comes in a number of levels. Seniortity is dependant on service and post. It is possible to have a WO2 who has held the rank longer than another but be junior. All support weapon platoons are commanded by Capts with a WO2 as 2I/C. these WOs are all junior to the CSM, who is also a WO2, because his appointment (CSM) is senior.

You then have QMSIs who are senior to WO2s without appointments but junior to CSMs. CSMs are junior to Technical Quartermaster Sergeants and Regimental Quartermaster Sergeants. The TQMS is junior to the RQMS.

All the above are the same ranks but different appointments.

Now if that is difficult WO1 is going to blow your mind.

WO1 is a rank but it has a lot of different appointment in different units. An infantry Bn could have as many as 4 WO1s all of which would be junior to the Regimental Sergeant Major no matter how long they have held the rank.

Others regiments and corps have different appointments. The most senior soldier is Royal Logistics Corps Conductor (no matter what the academy SM may think).

GermanSoldier
01-24-2007, 08:21 PM
Rank held by British officers.

arhob1
02-08-2007, 02:58 PM
1000ydstare said:

"Over the course of the 17th century, the increasing professionalisation of armies saw Sergeant Major General become the most junior of the general ranks. At the same time, the Sergeant portion of the title was more and more commonly dropped; by the early 18th century, the rank's name had been permanently shortened to Major General."

In teh British Army my understanding was that (as 1000ydstare says) that the old rank of Sergeant Major General was abbreviated to Major General. I don't agree that it is the most junior of the General ranks.

I thought it went:

Brigadier General (1 star) - commands a Brigade.
Major General (2 stars) - commands a Division.
Lieutenant General (3 stars) - commands an Army.
General (4 stars) - commands a Corps.
Field Marshal (5 stars) - top man.

I think that is how it goes!

pdf27
02-08-2007, 05:43 PM
No such thing as a Brigadier General in the British army - they're simply Brigadiers. Hence, in the British army a Major General is the most junior General rank. You will occasionally find British officers in a coalition environment such as ARRC HQ or Baghdad wearing star insignia on their collars to help allied soldiers figure out their rank, but there is no such thing officially in the British army.

2nd of foot
02-09-2007, 08:17 AM
I thought it went:

Brigadier General (1 star) - commands a Brigade.
Major General (2 stars) - commands a Division.
Lieutenant General (3 stars) - commands an Army.
General (4 stars) - commands a Corps.
Field Marshal (5 stars) - top man.

I think that is how it goes!

An army is larger than a Corps. A FM is theatre comander.

arhob1
02-09-2007, 04:57 PM
Yep you are right - apologies for posting duff information.

According to Wikepedia the British Army abbreviated Brigadier General to just Brigadier in 1922 with Brigadier being either the highest field rank or lowest General rank. So where I posted "Bigadier General " in the British Army I should have just said "Brigadier" ...

Quoted from http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Brigadier

"In many countries, especially those formerly part of the former British Empire, a Brigadier is either the highest field rank or most junior General appointment, nominally commanding a Brigade. It ranks above a full Colonel and below a Major General.

The rank is used by the British Army, Royal Marines, Australian Army, New Zealand Army, Pakistan Army, Indian Army and several others. Although it is not always general officer rank, it is equivalent to Brigadier General in services which use that rank. In NATO forces, Brigadier is OF-6 on the rank scale.

The title is derived from the equivalent former British rank of Brigadier General used until 1922, and still used in many forces including those of the US. "Brigadier" was already in use as a generic term for a commander of a Brigade irrespective of their specific rank.

From 1922 to 1928 the British rank title used was that of Colonel Commandant which, although reflecting its modern role in the British Army as a senior colonel rather than a junior general, was not well received. Until shortly after the Second World War, it was only an appointment conferred on Colonels (as Commodore was an appointment conferred on naval Captains) and not a substantive rank.

In Commonwealth and most Arabic-speaking countries (in which the rank is called Amid) the rank insignia comprises a crown (or national/presidential emblem in republics) with three stars (sometimes called "pips"), which are, in the Commonwealth, arranged in a triangle. A Brigadier's uniform may also have red collar flashes. It is otherwise similar to that of a Colonel (Colonels have a crown/emblem with two stars).

Until 1788, a rank of Brigadier des armées ("Brigadier of the Armies") existed in the French Army, which could be described as a senior colonel or junior brigade commander. The normal brigade command rank was Field Marshal (Maréchal de camp) (which elsewhere is a more senior rank). During the French Revolution, the ranks of Brigadier des armées and Maréchal de camp were replaced by Brigade General. In common with many countries, France now uses the officer rank of Brigade General instead of a "brigadier" rank."

Changing the subject does any one know why the British Army don't appoint Field Marshals during "peace time" - i.e. now? And what level of warfare would warrant one being appointed?

pdf27
02-09-2007, 07:20 PM
The entire British army could just about pull together a Corps, maybe two at a pinch nowadays (if they called up everyone including Cadets!). Hence there is really no call for a Field Marshal.

Walther
04-18-2007, 07:05 PM
No such thing as a Brigadier General in the British army - they're simply Brigadiers. Hence, in the British army a Major General is the most junior General rank. You will occasionally find British officers in a coalition environment such as ARRC HQ or Baghdad wearing star insignia on their collars to help allied soldiers figure out their rank, but there is no such thing officially in the British army.

Not anymore. The Brigadier was called Brigadier General up to shortly after WW1.

Jan