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Why does the military salute?

Updated on January 3, 2011

General Order #10

 To salute all officers, and all colors and standards not cased.

The Military has been saluting for hundreds of years. Every country's military and even law enforcement salute. In the Marine Corps we salute officers, the United States flag, and standards. Standards are flags on vehicles. They are usually mounted on either side of the hood of the vehicle of a general.

Saluting is a sign of great respect and also sorta of an acknowledgement of power. The salute has been traced back to mideval times. The knights started the salute. It's purpose is obviously different today but back then it wasn't so much acknowledgement of power as it was a sign of respect.

When the knights would ride around on their horse and pass by each other they would salute. Now im not sure if they did it to everyone or if they had a way of distingushing officers from non. If you think about it. If you were a knight back then and you were approaching another knight you wouldnt know who it was because of their suit of armor. The helmet in particular covered the entire face. The knights would raise their hand to the peice that covers the eyes and slide it up. They would do this so the other knight could see who it was and know he was friendly. You are showing your face out of respect for the other person.

When one salutes today they are doing that same motion as if they are moving their hand up to slide the cover over their eyes up. So now if you see people saluting you'll see the history behind it. If you are in the military now maybe you feel want to salute a little more now instead of trying to turn a blind eye or avoid officers because you get to take part in something that has so much history behind it. At least for me i think its pretty cool to know that.


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    • Linda Cassini profile image

      Linda Cassini 5 years ago from Las Vegas NV

      I have you to a link on one of my pieces...good work :)