Letter | Published:

Science and Naval Promotion

Nature volume 68, page 223 (09 July 1903) | Download Citation



THE friends of the advancement of science in the Navy can hardly fail to be very pleased with the recognition it has received in the recent promotions to the rank of commander. Of the twenty-seven lieutenants promoted on June 30 last, twenty-one were “specialised officers.” In a batch of promotions such as this there is much to encourage our best officers to direct their attention to the more scientific work of their profession, yet one cannot but remark upon, a feature in the analysis of these promotions, namely, the marked difference in the average times these new commanders remained lieutenants. Thus, three lieutenants (T) averaged 10 years; nine lieutenants (G) averaged 10.5 years; nine lieutenants (N) averaged 12.2 years. This is anything but encouraging to the specialist in navigation, but in view of the immense importance of securing the best men to navigate our fleets and handle them in action, it is much to be hoped that in future lieutenants (N) will not be so heavily weighted on their way to the higher ranks of the service. It is, however, only just to add that the theory and practice of navigation under recent legislation have been placed in a position in the front of scientific education they never occupied before.

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