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Second Lieutenant

From Academic Kids

Insignia of a United States Air Force Second Lieutenant
Shoulder strap of Polish infantry podporucznik

Second Lieutenant is the lowest commissioned rank in many armed forces.

In the United States Army, the rank bore no insignia until 1917 when a gold bar was introduced to contrast with the silver bar of a First Lieutenant. The rank is also used in the United States Air Force and the United States Marine Corps. As a result of the gold color of the bars, second lieutenants are often referred to colloquially as "Butterbars." The corresponding United States Navy rank is Ensign.

The rank was introduced throughout the British Army in 1871 to replace the rank of Ensign (Cornet in the cavalry), although it had long been used in the Royal Artillery, Royal Engineers and Fusilier regiments. At first the rank bore no distinct insignia. In 1902 a single star (sometimes referred to as a pip) was introduced; the ranks of Lieutenant and Captain had their number of stars increased by one to (respectively) two and three. The rank is also used by the Royal Marines.

In the Royal Air Force the comparable rank is Pilot Officer. The Royal Navy has no exactly equivalent rank, and a Second Lieutenant is senior to a Royal Navy Midshipman but junior to a Sub-Lieutenant. The Royal New Zealand Navy - breaking with Royal Navy tradition - uses the Ensign grade for this rank equivalent.

In Germany the rank is Leutnant.

See also

Template:US officer ranks Template:UK officer ranksda:Løjtnant de:Leutnant nl:Tweede luitenant no:Fenrik pl:Podporucznik sl:Poročnik

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