(Please offer corrections if I have made errors?)
Glossary of army terms, ranks and abbreviations – some not covered here will be annotated as they appear in my recollections. Hopefully this will help with reading the anecdotes but also make the reading flow more easily.
Not covered here are the equivalent NCO ranks used in the Artillery.
(Non Commissioned Officers (NCOs), Warrant Officers and Officers)
Most admin and some infantry – Private (Pte)
Commando/special forces – Trooper (Tpr)
Corps of Signals – Signalman (Smn)
Corps of Engineers – Sapper (Spr)
Rhodesia Regiment – Rifleman (Rfn)
Lance Corporal (L Cpl)
Colour Sergeant/Staff Sergeant (C Sgt / S Sgt – C Sgt only used by infantry/special forces)
Warrant Officer Class Two – (WOII / WO2, Sergeant Major, SM)
Warrant Officer Class One – (WOI / WO1– addressed as Sir or referred to as Mister)
Regimental Sergeant Major – (Almost always a WOI and referred to as RSM)
Second Lieutenant – 2Lt addressed as Lieutenant or Mister (and informally referred to as a subaltern (or subbie))
Lieutenant – Lt (subaltern 2Lt & Lt were also referred to as Mister)
Captain – Capt
Major – Maj
Lieutenant Colonel – Lt Col (addressed as Colonel)
Colonel – Col
Brigadier – Brig
Major General – Maj Genl (addressed/referred to as General)
Lieutenant General – Lt Genl (addressed/referred to as General)
General – Genl
Terms of address
All ranks up to C Sgt or S Sgt addressed warrant officers and officers as Sir.
WOs2 addressed WOs1 and officers as Sir.
WOs 1 Addressed officers as Sir.
Officers addressed any officer who was senior to them as Sir.
Officer Commanding – OC (would normally be the officer who commanded a sub-unit smaller than a battalion – such as a company or troop commander. He would normally be a Major but could also be a Captain).
Commanding Officer – CO (would normally be the officer who commanded a battalion strength unit and was normally a Lt Col – sometimes a Major).
Commander – Comd – (this appointment was usually the command of a Brigade or similar sized unit and although normally a Brigadier it could also be a Colonel in command.
Various Corps such as Signals and Engineers had a Lt Col Commander based at Army HQ).
The head of the army was the Commander, Rhodesian Army.
Adjutant – a staff officer appointment, the Adjutant would usually be a senior Lt or Capt who worked closely with the CO to ensure the smooth running of a unit
Unit and sub-unit abbreviations
Troop – Tp
Platoon – Pl
Company – Coy
Commando – Cdo
Squadron – Sqn
Battalion – Bn
Brigade – Bde