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Naval officer ranks
Flag officers:

Admiral of the fleetFleet admiralGrand admiral
AdmiralGeneral admiral
Vice admiralSquadron vice-admiralLieutenant admiral
Rear admiralCounter admiralDivisional admiral
CommodoreFlotilla admiral

Senior officers:

CaptainCapt at seaCapt of sea and warShip-of-the-line Capt
CommanderFrigate captain
Lieutenant commanderCorvette captain

Junior officers:

Captain lieutenantLieutenantShip-of-the-line lieutenant
Frigate lieutenantLieutenant (junior grade)Sub-lieutenant
Corvette lieutenantEnsign
Midshipman

Counter admiral is a rank found in many navies of the world, but no longer used in English-speaking countries, where the equivalent rank is rear admiral. The term derives from the French contre-amiral, meaning "secondary admiral".[1]

In modern navies that use it, rear (counter) admiral is generally, although not always, the lowest flag officer rank (in the German Navy, for instance, Flottillenadmiral ranks below Konteradmiral; in the Royal Canadian Navy, contre-amiral/rear admiral ranks above commodore).

Portugal and Brazil[edit | edit source]

In the navies of Portugal and Brazil, the rank of contra-almirante is the lowest of the permanent flag officer ranks. In the Portuguese Navy there is a flag officer rank below that of contra-almirante, the rank of comodoro (commodore), but this is only a provisional appointment, assigned to some captains.

Until the end of the 19th century, the present rank of contra-almirante was named chefe de esquadra (chief of squadron), both in the Portuguese and the Brazilian navies.

References[edit | edit source]

  1. Oxford English Dictionary. counter-admiral, n. Second edition, 1989; online version June 2011. <http://www.oed.com/view/Entry/42655>; accessed 22 June 2011.

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