Select a letter to browse an alphabetical listing of terms and definitions.
Select Embodied Militia
Units of volunteer or drafted militiamen organized under the local provincial colonial authority in times of war and emergency, to serve as regular troops until disbanded. The name Select Embodied Militia — in French Milice d’Élite — was mostly used in Lower Canada to describe such units during the War of 1812.
See also: Incorporated Militia
Tall, peaked, military headdress generally worn in European armies from the beginning of the 19th century. It gave an impression of greater height and was supposed to provide some protection to its wearer from sabre blows to the head. The word "shako" is derived from the Hungarian word, "czak". Adopted in the British Army in 1800, it was called a "cap" for many decades in British official correspondence. It was ornamented with a brass or gilded plate in front, which acted as a large and ornate regimental badge, a plume and, at times, cords. Initially cylindrical, British shakos were high-fronted from 1812-1813 and wider at the top from 1816 until the 1840s when they again became cylindrical and, from 1855, smaller. They were replaced by helmets in 1878. Canadian soldiers wore the same types of shako as their British comrades.
Warship of sailing navies from the 17th to the later part of the 19th century armed with 60 guns or more. These large ships were so named as they formed the "line" of battle in naval engagements. These were the battleships of the sailing era. Three 60-gun ships-of-the-line and one of 72 guns were built for the French navy at the Québec royal shipyard between 1746 and 1753. Thereafter, the only keels laid for ships-of-the-line built in Canada were at the Kingston (Upper Canada) shipyard during the War of 1812 for the 110-gun HMS St. Lawrence in 1814, and two more were under construction when the war ended.
Small metal balls that exploded from a shell in flight, often used against the enemy in the open. Does not refer to pieces of the shell itself, which are called shell fragments. It is named after Colonel Henry Shrapnel, Royal Artillery, who invented this type of shell around 1793.
Weapons, generaly meaning portable firearms, carried by individual infantry soldiers, including pistols, rifles and machine guns.