Comparative officer ranks of World War II
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- Air Force[note 1]
- Waffen-SS/Allgemeine SS
- Generic ranks not specific to any service
|British Commonwealth[note 2]||United States||Soviet Union[note 3]||China||Poland[note 4]||Greece[note 5]||Germany||Italy||Finland||Japan||Free French||Yugoslav Partisans[note 6]|
|Generalissimus of the Soviet Union (created June 1945)[note 7]||大元帥 T'e-chi Shang-chiang (General Special Class)[note 8]||Primo Maresciallo dell'Impero[note 9]||大元帥 Dai-Gensui(Grand Marshall)[note 10]|
|Admiral of the Navy[note 11]
General of the Armies
|Marshal of the Soviet Union||Marszałek Polski||Reichsmarschall des Großdeutschen Reiches
("ReichMarshall of the Greater German Reich")[note 12]
|Suomen marsalkka Marskalk av Finland
("Marshal of Finland")[note 13]
|Maréchal de France[note 14]
(Маршал Југославије)[note 16]
|Admiral of the Fleet
Marshal of the Royal Air Force[note 18]
General of the Army
|Chief Marshal[note 19]||一級上將 I-chi Shang-chiang (General 1st Class)||-||Αρχιναύαρχος (Admiral of the Fleet)[note 20]
Στρατάρχης (Field Marshal)[note 20]
Αιθεράρχης (Marshal of the Air Force)[note 20]
|Sotamarsalkka Fältmarskalk ("War Marshal")||元帥 Gensui (Marshall)[note 22]||Amiral de la flotte||General armije (Генерал армије)|
(Admiral of the Fleet)[note 23]
(General of the Army)
Air Chief Marshal
|二級上將 Ehr-chi Shang-chiang
(General 2nd Class)
Στρατηγός (General)[note 24]
Πτέραρχος (Air Chief Marshal)[note 24]
Generale d'Armata Aerea
|大将 Taishō (General)||Général d'armée
Général d'armée aérienne
Αντιστράτηγος (Lieutenant General)
Αντιπτέραρχος (Air Marshal)
|Ammiraglio di Squadra
Generale di Corpo d'Armata
Generale di Squadra Aerea
|中将 Chūjō (Lieutenant-General)||Général de corps d'armée
Général de corps d'armée aérienne
|少將 Shao-chiang (Major-General)||Kontradmirał
Υποστράτηγος (Major General)
|Ammiraglio di Divisione
Generale di Divisione
Generale di Divisione Aerea
|少将 Shōshō (Major-General)||Général de division
Général de division aérienne
Generale di Brigata
Generale di Brigata Aerea
|-||-||Général de brigade
capitaine de vaisseau chef de division[note 26]
Général de brigade aérienne
|Капита́н 1-го ра́нга (Captain 1st rank)
|上校 Shang-hsiao (Colonel)||Komandor
Σμήναρχος (Group Captain)
|Kapitän zur See
|Capitano di Vascello
|大佐 Taisa (Colonel)||Colonel
capitaine de vaisseau
|Капита́н 2-го ра́нга (Captain 2nd rank)
|中校 Chung-hsiao (Lieutenant-Colonel)||Komandor porucznik
Αντισυνταγματάρχης (Lieutenant Colonel)
Αντισμήναρχος (Wing Commander)
|Capitano di Fregata
|中佐 Chūsa (Lieutenant-Colonel)||Lieutenant-colonel
capitaine de frégate
|Капита́н 3-го ра́нга (Captain 3rd rank)
|少校 Shao-hsiao (Major)||Komandor podporucznik
|Πλωτάρχης (Lieutenant Commander)
Επισμηναγός (Squadron Leader)
|Capitano di Corvetta
|少佐 Shōsa (Major)||Commandant
capitaine de corvette
|上尉 Shang-wei (Captain)||Kapitan marynarki
Σμηναγός (Flight Lieutenant)
|Primo Capitano||Kapteeniluutnantti Kaptenlöjtnant
|大尉 Taii (Captain)||Capitaine
Lieutenant de vaisseau
|Tenente di Vascello
|Lieutenant Junior Grade
|Ста́рший лейтена́нт (Senior Lieutenant)
Ста́рший лейтена́нт (Senior Lieutenant)
|中尉 Chung-wei (Lieutenant)||Porucznik marynarki
Υποσμηναγός (Flying Officer)
|Oberleutnant zur See
|Sottotenente di Vascello
Primo Tenente[note 32]
|Luutnantti Löjtnant||中尉 Chūi (First Lieutenant)||Lieutenant
Enseigne de vaisseau de 1re classe
|Commissioned Warrant Officer
|少尉 Shao-wei (2nd Lieutenant)||Podporucznik marynarki
Ανθυπολοχαγός (Second Lieutenant)
Ανθυποσμηναγός (Pilot Officer)
|Leutnant zur See
|少尉 Shōi (Second Lieutenant)||Sous-lieutenant
Enseigne de vaisseau de 2nde classe
|Мла́дший лейтена́нт (Junior Lieutenant)
Мла́дший лейтена́нт (Junior Lieutenant)
|准尉 Chun-wei (Warrant Officer)||Chorąży marynarki
- Comparative military ranks of World War I
- List of comparative military ranks
- United States Army enlisted rank insignia of World War II
- Ranks and insignia of the Schutzstaffel
- Air Force ranks equal to generic Army ranks are not shown.
- The name "British Commonwealth" came into official use in 1926, in place of "British Empire".
- Included ranks on WWII period only.
- In Polish military tradition the Polish Air Forces form a separate branch of the Polish Army, though the military ranks were exactly the same as in the case of land forces. Sometimes the word pilot was added to distinguish Air officers from the officers of the land forces (cf. podporucznik pilot as opposed to podporucznik). Historically due to absence of full general rank (which was introduced later), Polish General ranks were shifted one position up compared to similar-sounding ranks in other countries. Hence the rank of generał brygady (literally "general of a brigade") in most cases was a commanding officer of a division and was roughly equivalent to Major General, and not Brigadier General in other armies.
- There is no standard method of transliterating the Greek language. See Romanization of Greek.
- All military ranks shown here date from 1943-46; the Partisans used positional ranks (similar to that used by the Red Army during the Russian Civil War) from their inception in 1941 to 1943, with minor changes.
- From June 27, 1945. Stalin appointed this rank by Supreme Council after victory over Germany.
- Rank held by the Chinese Leader Chiang Kai-shek.
- Highest possible military rank of Italy, created in 1938 and held solely and at the same time by King Victor Emmanuel III and Benito Mussolini
- Highest possible military rank of Japan, held solely by the Emperor of Japan
- Admiral of the Navy and General of the Armies while not in active service had retroactively become the "six star" ranks within the forces of the U.S. A proposal to elevate Nimitz and MacArthur to these ranks for the invasion of Japan was made but not acted upon prior to Japan's surrender.
- Essentially a "vanity rank" created by Hitler on June 29, 1941, for Hermann Göring. Hitler himself held the title of Führer, which was a political and party title, englobing the supreme command of the armed forces; however Führer wasn't, strictly speaking, a military rank, and Hitler never promoted himself from the rank of Gefreiter he had earned during World War I
- An honorary title given to Carl Gustaf Emil Mannerheim on his 75th birthday in 1942.
- Not a rank, but a dignity of the State.
- Not a rank, but a dignity of the State. No Amiral de France was alive during the war.
- Rank held only by Tito; conferred to him by the Anti-Fascist Council of the People's Liberation of Yugoslavia on November 29, 1943.
- In 1934, Heinrich Himmler's title became an actual rank after the Night of the Long Knives. From that point on, Reichsführer-SS became the highest rank of the SS and was considered on paper the equivalent of a Generalfeldmarschall in the Wehrmacht; however as Himmler's position and authority grew in Nazi Germany, so did his rank in a "de facto" sense. McNab, Chris. (2009) The SS, pp. 9, 30, 46-47.
- For example, King George VI was "Marshal of the Royal Australian Air Force" during 1939-45.
- Marshals and Chief marshals of a specific arm of service (Artillery, Armored Forces, Engineering Service, Air Force etc), were introduced in 1943; though they both are equal to General of the Army, they maintained precedence over each other.
- Rank held only by King George II
- In 1944, it was planned that the rank of SS-Volksmarschall to be introduced for possible promotion of Waffen-SS Generalobersts, but no one had ever been promoted to this rank. de:Volksmarschall
- Gensui, although usually translated as Field Marshal/Grand Admiral, was actually an honorary title conferred by the Emperor and not a rank as such.
- Introduced in 1940 as an equivalent to General of the Army, but from May 1945 became equal to Marshal of the Soviet Union, with no intermediate rank in between. 
- No officer was appointed to this rank during the war
- Generals of this rank in the German army and airforce generally held the rank of their service branch. In the Heer (army) these were "General der Infanterie" (infantry), "General der Artillerie" (artillery), "General der Kavallerie" (Cavalry), "General der Panzertruppe" (armoured troops), "General der Nachrichtentruppe" (line of communication troops), "General der Pionier" (pioneer troops) and "General der Gebirgstruppe" (mountain troops). In the Luftwaffe (air force) the ranks were "General der Flieger" (air force), "General der Fallschirmtruppe" (parachute troops) and "General der Flakartillerie" (anti-aircraft artillery).
- Prior to 1997 an appointment held by senior captains.
- An appointment conferred on Colonels rather than a substantive rank
- Rank reintroduced in 1943.
- Actually a Kapitän zur See (Captain) acting in an admiral's capacity. This was a rarely used rank. Best-known holder was Karl Dönitz, who from 28 January 1939 until 1 October 1939 was "Kapitän zur See und Kommodore" and "Leader of U-Boats".
- Traditionally captains of Polish cavalry held the rank of rotmistrz, a direct equivalent of the rank of kapitan in other branches of the military.
- Captains in the cavalry and mounted transport corps were called Rittmeister.
- "Primo" ranks were a way for identifying long term or career officers. Primo Capitano and Primo Tenente were officers with 12 years seniority in the rank or a total of 20 years of commissioned service.