Brigadier (abbreviated Brig) is a senior rank in the British Army and the Royal Marines. Brigadier is the superior rank to colonel, but subordinate to major-general. While the corresponding rank of brigadier general in many other nations is a general officer rank, the British Army considers it a field officer rank.
The rank has a NATO rank code of OF-6, placing it equivalent to the Royal Navy commodore and the Royal Air Force air commodore ranks. It is also equivalent to a brigadier general (1-star general) in the United States of America.
Insignia[edit | edit source]
The rank insignia for a brigadier is a crown over three "pips" ("Bath" stars). The rank insignia for a brigadier-general was crossed sword and baton.
Usage[edit | edit source]
In 1922 the appointment of brigadier-general was replaced by those of colonel-commandant and colonel on the staff. These appointments, although reflecting its modern role in the British Army as a senior colonel rather than a junior general, were not well received and were both replaced with brigadier in 1928.
Until shortly after World War II, brigadier was an appointment conferred on colonels (as commodore was an appointment conferred on naval captains) rather than a substantive rank. The Royal Marines retained this until 1997, when both commodore and brigadier became substantive ranks.
Junior officer rank[edit | edit source]
Historically, brigadier and sub-brigadier were the junior officer ranks in the Troops of Horse Guards. This corresponded to French practice, where a brigadier was the cavalry equivalent of a corporal. To reflect the status of the Horse Guards as Household Troops, brigadiers ranked with lieutenants and sub-brigadiers with cornets in other cavalry regiments. When the Horse Guards were disbanded in 1788, the brigadiers and sub-brigadiers of the 1st and 2nd Troops became lieutenants and cornets in the 1st and 2nd Regiments of Life Guards, respectively.
Footnotes[edit | edit source]
- "New Army Rank of Brigadier", The Times, 23 December 1927
- "No. 13005". 5—8 July 1788. https://www.thegazette.co.uk/London/issue/13005/page/
- Royal Company of Archers, royal.gov.uk. Accessed 1 July 2012
[edit | edit source]
- Army Ranks - British Army website
|Commissioned officer ranks of the British Armed Forces|
|NATO rank code||Student Officer||OF-1||OF-2||OF-3||OF-4||OF-5||OF-6
|Royal Navy||O Cdt||Mid||SLt||Lt||Lt Cdr||Cdr||Capt||Cdre||RAdm
|Adm of the Fleet|
|Royal Marines||2Lt||Lt||Capt||Maj||Lt Col||Col||Brig||Maj-Gen||Lt-Gen||Gen|
|Army||O Cdt||2Lt||Lt||Capt||Maj||Lt Col||Col||Brig||Maj-Gen
|Royal Air Force||OC / SO||APO / Plt Off||Fg Off||Flt Lt||Sqn Ldr||Wg Cdr||Gp Capt||Air Cdre||AVM||Air Mshl||Air Chf Mshl
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