Topic: AIF - Lighthorse
The Australian Light Horse,
Militia and AIF
Military Board, Light Horse Manual for the Drill Training and Exercise of the Light Horse Regiments of Australia, 1st January 1910, (Melbourne 1909), pp. 6 - 8.
Standard Cavalry Definitions
Alignment - The straight line on which the front of a body of troops is formed, or is to form.
Base - Two points placed a distance apart, to indicate a line by the prolongation of which the proper alignment of a line or the covering of a column is regulated.
Change of front - A new alignment, either meeting or intersecting the former alignment.
Change of position - Moving troops off their own ground, and reforming to the front or flanks on a new alignment.
Close column - Troops or squadrons at one horse's length from one another. (Leaders in line on the right and serrefiles on the left of their respective units.)
Column - Troops on parallel and successive alignments, at a distance from One another equal to their own frontage.
Column of Half Squadrons - Half squadrons on parallel and successive alignments at troop wheeling distance.
Column of masses - regiments formed in mass, one behind the other, at such a distance that brigade mass can be formed to a flank by each regiment wheeling.
Covering - The act of one or more men, or bodies of men, placing themselves correctly in rear of one another.
Deployment - Formation of line from column.
Depth - Space occupied by a body of troops from front to rear.
Directing unit - The body on which the direction, pace, and alignment of a line, or relative positions of the several parts of a column depend.
Distance - Space between men or bodies of troops from front to rear.
Dressing - Taking up an alignment correctly.
Echelon - A succession of parallel units facing the same direction, each on a flank and to the rear of the unit in front of it.
Flank - Either lateral extremity of a rank, line, or column also the direction to either hand of a body, at right angles to its front.
Flank, directing - That by which units march or dress.
Flank, inner - That nearer to the point of formation or direction; also that which serves as a pivot when a body is changing its direction.
Flank, outer - That opposite to the inner or directing flank.
Front - In a general sense, the direction towards which a body of troops, or a single man is facing.
Frontage - The extent of ground covered laterally by troops.
Horse's length and width - Length 8 feet [2.4m], width 3 feet [0.91m], which includes 3 inches [7.62cm] on either side of rider's knee.
Interval - The lateral space between men or units from flank to flank.
Line - Troops formed on the same alignment.
Line of Masses - A line of two or more regiments each formed in mass with deploying interval plus 16 yards between them.
Mass (Regiment) - Line of squadron columns, closed to two horses' lengths interval between squadrons.
Mass (Brigade) - A line of regimental masses closed to 16 yards [14.63m] interval between regiments.
Pivot fixed - The term applied to the pivot, when during the wheel the pivot man turns on his own ground.
Pivot moving - The term applied to the pivot, when during the wheel the pivot man moves on the arc of a circle.
Rank - A line of men side by side.
Regiment - Two, three, or four squadrons (normally four), with regimental head-quarters. [Note: In the AIF, the establishement number of squadrons per regiment was always three. The full Militia and AIF Light Horse regimental organisation information may be found here: Peace establishment of Australian Light Horse, 1903-14. There were exceptions with the addition of a fourth squadron, mainly from regiments broken up for use as reinforcements at Gallipoli.]
Section - Four men, the No. 1 being the leader.
Serrefiles - Those riding in rear of a troop or squadron.
Squadron - Two, three, or four troops (normally four). [Note: In the AIF Light Horse the establishement number of troops was always four.]
Squadron column - A squadron with its troops in column.
Troop - One of the subdivisions of a squadron. [Note: In the AIF Light Horse the establishement number of men per troop was always forty two - ten sections plus two men.]
Wheeling - A movement by which a body brings forward a flank on a fixed or moving pivot.
Australian Light Horse Militia
Citation: The Australian Light Horse, Militia and AIF, Glossary