Ranks in the French Navy

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Marine Nationale
Naval Ensign of France
Motto: Honneur, Patrie, Valeur, Discipline
(“Honour, Homeland, Valour, Discipline”)
Command
Naval Ministers
Maritime Prefect
Components
Force d'action navale
Forces sous-marines (FOST, ESNA)
Aviation navale
FORFUSCO (Commandos Marine, Fusiliers Marins)
Gendarmerie Maritime
Equipment
Current fleet
Current deployments
Personnel
Ranks in the French Navy
History
History of the French Navy
Future of the French Navy
Ensigns and pennants
Historic ships

   battleships
   cruisers
   ships of the line
   Sail frigates

Historic fleets
Awards
Croix de guerre
Médaille militaire
Légion d'honneur
Ribbons

The rank insignia of the French Navy (French: Marine Nationale) are worn on shoulder straps of shirts and white jackets, and on sleeves for navy jackets and mantels. Until 2005, only commissioned officers had an anchor on their insignia, but enlisted personnel is now receiving them as well. Commanding officers have titles of capitaine, but are called commandant (in the army, both capitaine and commandant are ranks, which tends to stir some confusion among the public). The two highest ranks, vice-amiral d'escadre and amiral (admiral), are functions, rather than ranks. They are assumed by officers ranking vice-amiral (vice admiral). The only amiral de la flotte (Admiral of the Fleet) was François Darlan after he was refused the dignity of Admiral of France. Equivalent to the dignity of Marshal of France, the rank of Admiral of France remains theoretical in the Fifth Republic; it was last granted in 1869, during the Second Empire, but retained during the Third Republic until the death of its bearer in 1873. The title of amiral de la flotte was created so that Darlan would not have an inferior rank to that of his counterpart in the British Royal Navy, who was an Admiral of the Fleet.

Insignia[edit]

Great Officers[edit]

Officers[edit]

Officiers généraux — Flag officers[edit]

Officiers supérieurs — Senior officers[edit]

Officiers subalternes — Junior officers[edit]

Petty officers and enlisted personnel[edit]

Officiers mariniers — Petty Officers[edit]

Matelots et quartiers-maîtres — Sailors and quarter-masters[edit]

Attributions[edit]

Personnel with a particular attribution may wear distinctive features on their rank insignia. For instance, medical officers bear two red stripes on their insignia. Similarly, the Ingénieur des études et techniques de travaux maritimes wear pearl-grey stripes.

Peintres de la Marine, who are not employed by the Navy but have a special status, wear a uniform and officier straps with rank insignia replaced with the words "Peintre officiel".