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Found 2 results

  1. We all think we know the meaning of the idiom, “to turn a fort,” but do we? A military phrase taken from the French (as was most 19th century military terms) the French equivalent appears to be “tournailler une fortification” (literally “to spin the position like a toy top,” but militarily “to isolate the position; render it ineffectual.”) In the same way “piquet” became picket, the unpronounceable “tournailler” became turn; but the intended meaning remained unchanged. Why is this important? The Confederate position at Fort Columbus, with its 140 guns manned by 13000 soldiers, sited on a
  2. At the beginning of the 19th Century, Napoleon was seen as "the greatest military leader of recent times," and French was naturally the language to be learned in order to facilitate the study of Napoleon and his strategy and tactics. In the process, French terms for military ranks, units, movements, weaponry, etc were reaffirmed as "the correct terms" for universal understanding (and new French terms were incorporated into American military terminology.) The following link: a publication provided to American soldiers deployed to Europe in 1917 (with attention being directed to French Mili
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