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|Promotion in the Marines.
Written by Rachel G
(9/12/2010 6:15 p.m.)
Despite diligent searching in the archives and elsewhere, I cannot find any details of how promotion in the Marines could be obtained. The best I have come up with is the page about the history of the Marines which is linked below. This tells us that the Marines came under Admiralty control in 1802, at which time heir officers "relinquished the very military but quite non-naval practice of purchasing commissions".
My understanding is that military officers purchased their commissions, and that following the Duke of York's reforms in 1796 they had to serve a minimum number of years at each rank before being eligible to purchase commission at a higher rank.
In the Navy it seems that "interest" (ie the backing of an influential patron) was necessary for promotion up to the rank of Post-Captain, after which promotion was by strict seniority.
So where does this leave Lieutenant Price? It is understandable that Sir Thomas had no influence in naval matters, so he would not have been able to assist Lt. Price with promotion under naval rules. But suppose that MP is set at the latest in 1814 (the year of publication). The marriage of Frances Ward to Lt. Price must have taken place about twelve years previously - in 1802 or earlier - which would put Lt Price's promotion under military rules. In which case Sir Thomas might have been able to assist his brother-in-law in the purchase of a higher rank in the Marines. Or maybe we have to assume that by the time the question of assisting the Prices arose, Lt. Price's promotion was already governed by Admiralty regulations.
Does anyone have more detailed information about the promotion of officers in the Marines at this period which might shed some light on this matter?
|History of the Marines|
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