General (United Kingdom)

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General (or full general to distinguish it from the lower general officer ranks) is the highest rank currently achievable by professional officers of the British Army. The rank can also be held by Royal Marines officers in tri-service posts. It ranks above lieutenant-general and, in the Army, is subordinate to the rank of field marshal, which is now only awarded as an honorary rank. The rank of general has a NATO-code of OF-9, and is a four-star rank.[1] It is equivalent to a full admiral in the Royal Navy or an air chief marshal in the Royal Air Force.

Officers holding the ranks of lieutenant-general, major-general and the former rank of brigadier-general (now simply brigadier and no longer a general officer rank) may be generically considered to be generals.


A general's insignia is a crossed sword and baton. This appeared on its own for the now obsolete rank of brigadier-general. A major-general has a pip over this emblem; a lieutenant-general a crown instead of a pip; and a full general both a pip and a crown. The insignia for the highest rank, that of field marshal, consists of crossed batons within a wreath and surmounted by a crown.


See also