Moving 17th Century Soldiers

Orders: Give and Take

Reference here is to orders from a commander to a unit of soldiers, and that unit can be from a single file to a regiment.  The keystone word here is 'unit,' which the person issuing the command wishes to have operate as a single, cohesive entity.  Got that?  Cohesive!

To obtain the desired reaction of all members of the unit, commands must be given in a standard manner with fixed and universally understood words.  Although a civilian trying to cope with an office meeting will wish to know six aspects of a request: who, how, what, where, when and why, the soldier in a file needs to know ONLY three of those (and best in this sequence):




For military purposes, the other three are unnecessary, superfluous, and an invitation to spontaneous discussion among soldiers:




Sergeant Subtlelus says:

Commands are to be delivered succinctly, with resolve and without any cloud of doubt or uncertainty.  Soldiers must always maintain their confidence in their leaders.