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Krim (General)

Krim, a Bajoran general

General was a military rank, the equivalent of which was used by the service organizations of many civilizations. As a traditional grade, general was the most senior officer rank in the ground forces of a military organization. In comparison to naval ranking systems, this rank was equivalent to the admiral grade. The rank of marshal was usually considered senior to that of general.

History Edit

A general was by definition a military officer who was entrusted with the command of a large armed force, in most cases an army of soldiers. The concept of a "general officer" has been around for almost as long as warfare itself, with ancient interstellar empires, such as Tkon Empire and Slavers, probably having some equivalent to this position in their military forces. (TAS: "The Slaver Weapon"; TNG: "The Last Outpost")

By culture Edit

Earth Edit

Earth general insignia
US o-10 rank pin
US military
Ekos General
Nazi Germany

The use of the rank of general on Earth can trace its origins to antiquity. In Mesopotamia, for instance, there was at least one major battle in the year 3834 BC which probably had several generals in attendance. (TOS: "Requiem for Methuselah")

One of the better known ancient generals was Sun Tzu who led Chinese forces in the Middle Ages. Generals were also present in the militaries of Europe during the Middle Ages. Such generals usually charged military matters to various captains, who had companies of soldiers under their command. (TNG: "The Last Outpost"; TNG: "The Defector")

In the 18th century, the militaries of Europe were mostly commanded by generals and marshals, such figures often dressing in elaborate uniforms adorned with various medals and awards. (TNG: "Hide and Q")

On the planet Gothos, the entity Trelane displayed himself as a 19th century general and called himself "General Trelane, retired." (TOS: "The Squire of Gothos")

During the 20th century, the militaries of Earth were involved in several major wars, with generals commanding the many armies called upon to fight in these conflicts. By this time, various "grades" of the rank of general had come into being. In the United States armed forces, the general insignia was comprised of various silver stars with a four-star general considered a "full" general.

The five-star ranks General of the Air Force and General of the Army also exist but were never seen on camera. The US military also maintains a supreme rank known as General of the Armies of the United States, often considered the equivalent to a six-star general. The only two people to ever be promoted to this rank are John J. Pershing, the "second" to hold the rank, and George Washington, who was promoted to it retroactively.

The nation of Germany also used the rank of general, in particular during World War II, when Germany fought as a major combatant in the conflict. The lowest general rank (Generalmajor) was denoted by a gold shoulder board. (ENT: "Storm Front")

Some of the more famous Earth generals include:

Ekos Edit

Ekos insignia

German military insignia made an appearance three hundred years later on the planet Ekos, when historian John Gill recreated a government based on Nazi Germany. This government had a military with generals using the same insignia as their 20th century counterparts, as well as SS generals who displayed rank in the form of collar patches. (TOS: "Patterns of Force")

Other cultures Edit

The Cardassian Union's rank of legate and the Breen Confederacy's rank of thot were both considered general rank equivalents. The grade also existed in the Romulan Star Empire, Andorian Imperial Guard, Bajoran Militia, and the Klingon Defense Force.

Many rank systems had several grades of the general officer rank, which included general, lieutenant general, major general, and brigadier general (also known simply as brigadier).

Generals Edit


Martok, a Klingon general


Velal, a Romulan general

Klingon Edit

Romulan Edit

Other Edit

This chart shows only general equivalencies based on the ranks used by many governments on Earth, as well as the rest of the galaxy.

External linkEdit

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