Midshipmen Ordinary and Extraordinary
This article reviews and clarifies the origins and circumstances of the appointments of Midshipmen Ordinary and Extraordinary in the Royal Navy from the 1660’s to the 1730’s. The first mention of Midshipmen Extraordinary is in 1669, and thereafter the appointment was frequently, but not always, used for commissioned officers without a commissioned appointment. Based on an examination of records at the PRO, the article cites many examples of such appointments and the variety of the circumstances under which they occurred. The article also discusses the appointment of Midshipmen Ordinary. Finally, it presents the career appointments, nearly twenty in number, of one officer and eventual commander, many of them repeated tours, despite his commission, as Midshipman Extraordinary.