Interesting facts about the military greeting

Military greeting is a ritual of greeting servicemen or military formations of different states. The order of its giving differs slightly in different countries.

In the Armed Forces of Russia, a military salute with an uncovered head, unlike a number of other armies of the world, is performed without raising a hand, but by adopting a combat position with a turn of the head towards the welcomed one. There is even a saying: don't put a hand to an empty head!

The military greeting originated in the era of chivalry and crusades. Travelers, outside the city walls, always traveled on alert. People in armor rode with a downy visor of their helmet so that they would not accidentally catch the robber's arrow. And when two such groups met, people raised the visor of the helmet before the patrol, as a sign of peaceful intentions.

Well, why with the right hand, and not with the left, for example? It's simple: the weapon was always in the right hand, and the right hand without a weapon shows peaceful intentions.

The tradition of modern military greetings originates on the island of Great Britain. In many armies of the world, junior ranks greeted elders by taking off their hats, as was the case in the British army, but by the 18th and 19th centuries, the headgear of soldiers had become so bulky that this greeting was reduced to a simple touch of the visor. In 1762, the charter of the Scottish Guards specifies: "Since nothing disfigures the headdress and does not pollute the lacing like taking off the hat, the personnel for the future are ordered to only raise their palm to the hat with a short gesture when passing the officer." This innovation caused some resistance, but, as we can see, it still stuck.

By the middle of the 19th century, the military greeting in Great Britain underwent new changes: the hand raised to the headdress (more precisely, to the right eyebrow) was turned with the palm outward. This tradition continues to this day.

In the USA, the hand is brought out slightly forward, as if closing the eyes from the sun, and the palm looks at the ground. It turns out that even in the days of sailing ships, sailors used resin and tar to seal cracks in the wooden parts of the ship, so that they would not let sea water through. At the same time, they protected their hands with white gloves, but it was unworthy to show a dirty palm, therefore, in the navy, the greeting hand turned 90 degrees down. The military in France are also saluting.

In tsarist Russia, the greeting was performed by bringing two fingers of the right hand, the index and middle, to the temple. This can be explained by the fact that: to take off the hat, two fingers (index and middle) were put on its brim from above, and the thumb picked up the brim of the hat from below. This tradition has remained to this day in the Polish Armed Forces.

From July 23, 1944, in all garrisons and units of the armed forces, for all ranks of the German army, the military greeting was replaced with a party greeting. Prior to this, the party greeting was used in SS units and party structures.

In 2014, US President BH Obama, upon arriving in New York for a meeting of the UN General Assembly, leaving the presidential helicopter and responding to the greetings of the marines meeting him, gave a military greeting with a glass of coffee in a saluting hand.

Earlier, in 2002, US President George W. Bush "saluted" the same Marines with a dog in their arms