Quick & Dirty
Posted by Ken on October 14, 1997 at 09:09:13:
In response to Navy and ships, written by Anne on October 13, 1997 at 07:14:05
] Does anyone know the list of rank for the Navy? It would be a very helpful thing for me to know for my story. Also, I am looking for any info about ships (it's bad that the story is now at sea yet I know nothing about ships) :-(. Any help or links will be VERY appreciated!!!!!
As it says above:
rear admiral (blue)
rear admiral (white)
rear admiral (red)
vice admiral (blue)
vice admiral (white)
vice admiral (red)
admiral of the fleet (after ca. 1810)
Midshipman could be promoted to lieutenant after 6 years service, 3 at sea, and passing an oral examination.
Lieutenant could be promoted after distinguishing himself in action, as a sign of favor to his captain, or to fill other vacancies.
Commander was usually a short-term rank, but as the Napoleonic wars went on, commanders began to languish "on the beach", ie, without commands (it wasn't until after the wars that commanders began to be made the second in command of larger ships; before that, there *had* to be a (small) ship lying around for them to command).
Captain commanded at least 6th-rate ships, the rate being a measure of size of the vessel & number of guns carried. (6th and 5th rate vessels were usually called frigates; 4th rate vessels were rare, being too slow to be frigates & too weak to be battleships; 3rd, 2nd, and 1st rate vessels were line-of-battle ships, or just battleships.) A captain of more than 3 years seniority had certain privileges and better opportunities, but all the rank lists at least from lieutenant on were strictly in order of seniority anyways.
The admiral ranks were a carry-over from the 17th century. The fleet as a whole had been divided into 3 parts, and each division into 3 squadrons; thus, there were originally only 9 admirals. By the Napoleonic, there were over 100. Each admiral would fly his own special color pennant from the masthead of his flagship (because it carried his flag, see?). There was also an unofficial "yellow" squadron, for superannuated or courtesy-promotion admirals, not to be given actual commands any more.
This is pretty hasty, I can try to get you more later if you have questions. Ditto with resources you can look up, no time right now to list them!
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