Commodore, Second Class (Royal Navy)

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Commodore, Second Class was a temporary rank in the Royal Navy to which officers of the rank of Captain were appointed.


In the Military Branch of the Royal Navy, Commodores ranked and commanded after Rear-Admirals and above Captains.[1] The distinguishing pendant of a Commodore, Second Class, was:

A white broad pendant with the red St. George's Cross with a red ball in the upper canton of the broad pendant next the staff. The diameter of the red ball is to be half the vertical depth of the white in the cantons next the staff, and the ball is to be in the centre of the canton.[2]

Article 170 runs:

Commodores.—Commodores, when in the presence of Captains senior to them, shall rank and command according to their seniority as Captains.[3]

Article 196 states:

Commodores.—A Captain, when authorised to wear a broad pendant, shall have the temporary title and rank of Commodore, of which there shall be two classes :
(a) A Commodore of the First Class, when he shall have a Captain of the same ship under him;
(b) A Commodore of the Second Class, when without a Captain of the same ship under him.

Article 198 states:

Commodore, Second Class.—A Commodore of the Second Class is a Captain of one of His [or Her] Majesty's ships authorised to hoist a distinguishing broad pendant on board such ship; but it is only in such ship, her tenders and boats, that his Second Class broad pendant is to fly, except in the circumstances provided for in Article 185.
2. A Second Class Commodore shall wear his broad pendant in the presence of all Flag Officers and Commodores, provided there be no senior Captain present; but he is to be considered only as a Captain, except as to honours and emoluments.
3. Meeting a Senior Captain.—If a Commodore of the Second Class should meet with a senior Captain, not a Commodore, he shall immediately strike his broad pendant, and shall wear only the ordinary pendant during the time he is in the presence of such senior Captain ; but on separating from him, his broad pendant is to be re-hoisted. See 170 (Commodores).

Article 185 referred to above provides:

Senior Officer in Ship other than his own. When it shall be absolutely requisite for the Senior Officer of two or more ships, not being a Flag Officer or a Commodore of the First Class, to be absent from his own ship and to go on board another ship under his orders, for the better conducting any important service on which he may be engaged, he is to direct the officer commanding such ship to bear him in his proper rank, as lent for particular service, and while so borne the said Senior Officer shall have the same command and authority in every respect as he would have had if present in his own ship, and, if a Commodore of the Second Class, he will hoist his broad pendant.
In the event of the ship commanded by the Senior Officer of two or more ships, who is not a Flag Officer, being wrecked or lost, such Senior Officer may direct himself to be borne as additional in his proper rank, in one of the ships under his orders ; and while so borne, or until an officer senior to him shall arrive on the spot and otherwise direct, he shall have the same command and authority as he had before his own ship was lost.
In either of the above cases, the Senior Officer is to relinquish all command and authority on board the ship in which he is temporarily borne by his own order as soon as the exigencies of the Service will admit thereof, and he is forthwith to report to his superior authority, for the information of the Admiralty, the circumstances which rendered it necessary for him to avail himself of the provisions of this Article.


  1. King's Regulations and Admiralty Instructions (1913). I. [K.R. & A.I. (1913). I.] p. 47.
  2. Article 108. K.R. &. A.I. (1913). I. pp. 29-30.
  3. Article 108. K.R. &. A.I. (1913). I. p. 47.