The Pensions of Widows of Officers of the Land Forces, except those of General Officers and of Officers holding Staff appointments, are granted according to the commission by which their husbands received pay, and not according to Brevets.

The Widows' Pension is not forfeited by her re-marriage, unless the person whom she marries be an Officer, and serves against His Majesty. The pension must be claimed within a year after the Husband's death, or the Pension will only commence from the beginning of the year in which the Claim is made, and if the claim is not preferred before her death, the Pension is not allowed to her representatives.


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Other Staff and Garrison Officers, according to the Regimental Commissions which they held when placed on Half Pay.


A machine composed of timber, which by means of a moveable board, enables the defenders of a fortress to allow such a rush of water from the Batard'eaux, as to inundate and destroy the works which the enemy may have constructed in the ditch.

PENTAGON. A geometrical figure, or Polygon of five sides.

PERCUSSION. The impression made by a body falling or striking upon another, or the shock of two meeting bodies.

PERIMETER. The Perimeter of a figure is the sum of all its sides taken together.

PERIPHERY. The circumference of any curve, as the circle, ellipse, parabola, &c.

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PERMANENT RANK. A Rank in the Army which does not cease with any particular service, or locality of circumstances.

When Officers having Permanent Rank serve with those who have only Temporary Rank, and their commissions are of the same date, the former take precedence of the latter.

PERPENDICULAR. A line is perpendicular to another when the angles formed at the point of contact are both right angles.

In Fortification, the Perpendicular is a part of the right Radius, extending from the point where it bisects the exterior side towards the place, and its length is proportioned to the figure of the Polygon on which the works are constructed, being th of the exterior side for a square, 4th for a Pentagon, and th for a hexagon, or polygon of a greater number of sides.

PERSPECTIVE. The science by which objects are delineated in Drawings according to their natural appearance and situation.

PETARD. An engine made of gun metal, fixed upon a board, and containing about nine pounds of powder, with a hole at the end opposite to the plank to fill it, into which the vent is screwed; the petard thus prepared is fixed to the gate of a fortress, and being fired, bursts it open. Leathern bags, containing fifty pounds of powder, haye recently been ascertained to be more expeditious and successful than petards.

PHALANX. A Macedonian legion formed into a square compact body of pikemen, consisting of sixteen in flank and five hundred in front. The files stood so close together that the pikes of the fifth rank extended three feet beyond the front of the phalanx. The ordinary number of a complete phalanx was 16000 men; but ́ this number varied according to circumstances. Polybius Hist. l. 17, c. 25. Quint. Curt. l. 1, c. 19.

PICKETS. Are sharp stakes used on various occasions, as in fortification, for securing the fascines of a battery; in the camp, for fastening the tent ropes, &c.

PICKER. A small pointed piece of brass wire, which is supplied to every Infantry Soldier for the purpose of cleaning the vent of his musquet.

PIECE. A name for any gun, large or small. Pieces of Ordnance, all kinds of great guns.

PIERS. The Columns upon which the arch of a Bridge is raised.

PIKE. A military weapon formerly much in use, but its place is now generally supplied by the Infantry Bayonet, a formidable weapon in the hands of a British Soldier, and which the experience of the late War has demonstrated to possess an irresistible influence in deciding the fate of an action. The Pike had a shaft from ten to fourteen feet long, with a flat pointed steel head called the spear.

PILE. A beam of wood which is driven into the ground to form a solid foundation for building.

Also a heap; as a pile of balls.

To pile arms, is to plant three firelocks together, and unite the ramrods in such a manner, that they may remain steady on the ground.

PILUM. A species of Javelin, which was used by the Roman Soldiers; its length was about six feet, and was terminated by a massy triangular point of steel eighteen inches in length.

PIONEERS. A Soldier from each company in every Regiment is appointed to act as a Pioneer; these are formed into a body under the command of a Corporal, and are supplied with saws, felling axes, spades, mattocks, pickaxes, and bill-hooks. Their services are so important in working on Intrenchments, and Fortified Works, and for making mines and approaches, that no Regiment is considered fit for Service unless the Pioneers are completely equipped.

PIQUET. A detachment composed either of Cavalry or Infantry, whose principal duty is to guard the Army in its rear from surprise, and to oppose such small parties as the enemy may push forward for the purpose of reconnoitring. See the Observations under the head of Outpost, and consult an excellent little treatise on the nature and duties of Piquets by COLONEL FITZ-CLARence.

PIVOT. Is the Officer or Soldier who happens to be at the flank on which a Company wheels. The Pivot flank in column, is that which, when wheeled up to, preserves the divisions of the line in the natural order and to

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their proper front, the other is called the reverse flank. In columns, with the Grenadiers, or right, in front, the left is the pivot flank; and when the Light Infantry, or left, is in front, the right becomes the pivot.

PLACES OF ARMS. In Fortification, are spaces contrived at the salient and re-entering angles of the covered way. The Salient Places of Arms, which serve as a point for assembling the troops destined for a sortie, are formed by the circular part of the counterscarp, and by the prolongation of the branches of the covered way until they meet. The object of the Re-entering Places of Arms is to flank the branches of the covered way, and to contain the troops necessary for its defence; they are constructed with two faces, forming a salient angle, and traced at an inclination of 100° with the counterscarp, in order to admit a fire from the musquetry to defend the approach to the Glacis by a cross fire. A Reduit is sometimes constructed in the Re-entering Place of Arms, separated from it by a ditch. In order to allow of the construction of this work, the demigorges of the Re-entering Places of Arms are made equal to fifty-six yards, of which forty are taken for the demigorge of the Reduit; the faces are directed to a point within the Glacis, so that the enemy cannot enfilade them, and flanks are given to it in order to defend the covered way through its whole extent. The great advantages derived from this work are, that it affords a well protected place for assembling the Troops for a sortie, as well as in the event of the enemy attempting to carry the covered way by main force, its defenders may possess a secure retreat, and even be able to regain their position at the point of the bayonet. Vide Cut "Fortification", where d represents a Salient, R a Re-entering Place of Arms, and s a Reduit in the latter.

PLANE. In a general sense, means a perfectly level surface.

PLATFORM. Is a flooring usually constructed of timber, on which the cannon are placed. Platforms are made from fourteen to eighteen feet long, seven feet broad at the interior slope, and seven and a half at the other extremity. They consist of five joists, or sleepers, six inches in area, and of the same length as the platform; besides these beams is a piece of timber eight inches

square and about eight feet long, called a heurtoir, which is placed at the head of the platform next to the interior slope; this beam prevents the wheels of the carriages from rolling upon the interior slope, and is also serviceable when the Artillery is to be fired during the night, as there are marks made upon it, from observations of the enemy's position taken during the day, by which the guns are preserved in the proper direction. The sleepers are retained in their places by pickets driven into the ground; the floor is then laid over the sleepers, and consists of two or three-inch planks, which are nailed down firmly, and form a station upon which the cannon are placed. The Platforms for Guns and Howitzers have generally a slope towards the parapet of one inch to every yard, in order to check the recoil of the gun; mortar platforms are laid perfectly horizontal. Vide Cut Barbette.

PLATOON. A word formerly employed to express a small body of Soldiers, such as a Subdivision, but it is now only used in the term "Manual and Platoon Exercise."

PLONGE'E. The plongée is the superior slope given to the parapet; this inclination is seldom made more than two inches per foot, as it would otherwise weaken the crest or interior edge of the parapet.

PLUMMET. A leaden or iron weight suspended by a string, used by Artificers to sound the depth of water, or to regulate the perpendicular direction of any building.

"Plummets which vibrate the required times of march in a minute, are of great utility, and can alone prevent or correct uncertainty of movement; they must be in the possession, and be constantly referred to, by each instructor of a squad. The several lengths of plummets, swinging the times of the different marches in a minute are as follow:


Slow time......... 75 steps in a minute 24 96
Quick time.......108
Wheeling time...120

Double march...150

12 03

9 .80

6 .26

"A musket ball suspended by a string which is not subject to stretch, and on which are marked the different required lengths, will answer the above purpose, may be

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