Branch Titles

Discussion in 'Diamond Lil's' started by Jockroach, Nov 24, 2008.

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  1. It's been a long, long time since I left the Pusser and a lot, if not all, branches have had their names / titles changed. One question that still make me stop and wonder is the Regualting Branch.

    With the introduction of female sailors in an equal opportunity mode, when the female regulators get their buttons, are they still called Master at Arms? Or the shotened term of Master.

    Sure tradition hasn't died too much and they are called Chief Regualtors. Or are they still called Jossman?

    I suppose they could always be called Mistress and not Master. I can imagine the tannoy, "AB Soandso report to the Mistress's office"

    Just an idle thought that was all and I didn't know if it belonged here or the Gash Barge......whatever!!

    Can I move now as I had stopped?

  2. sgtpepperband

    sgtpepperband War Hero Moderator Book Reviewer

    (More affectionately known as the 'JOSS' and an almost credible derivation of the term from an unknown author)[/align]

    The Master-at-Arms, better known to sailors as the 'Joss' is an intriguing piece of naval history. Let me tell you a story?

    No Master-at-Arms existed in the Royal Navy prior to the year 1694, although for some time there had been a senior Petty Officer in each ship responsible for the training of gun crews. Over the years he had become known as Master of the Armoury. On 4 August 1694 the Board of the Admiralty decided that the senior Lieutenant on each Man o' War should henceforth be known as the First Lieutenant, one whose tasks would be that of maintenance of the efficiency and discipline of his ship's company. When the promotion signal was received in the Fleet, the name at the top of the list was that of Lieutenant Henry JAMES, so Lieutenant became the very first, First Lieutenant (hence 'James the First', 'Jimmy'or 'Number One').

    Now, although Lieutenant JAMES was an expert seaman, and undertook much to increase the training programme and therefore the efficiency of his crew, he found that he was hard pressed in his other tasks of maintaining discipline. This was mainly because the majority of seamen in those days were recruited from criminal classes; by going off to sea they escaped the clutches of the law but were now free to continue their nefarious activities around the messdecks of the Fleet, as a result of which the lower deck was a hotbed of crime. Now, our Lieutenant JAMES was quick to realize that the task of maintaining discipline was to require much of his time if he was to carry it out as well as the Board of the Admiralty and, of course his Captain, expected of him, so he decided that a responsible Petty Officer should be appointed whose duty it would be to be accountable to the First Lieutenant for the maintenance of good order and naval discipline in the ship.

    Looking around his motley crew, Lieutenant JAMES decided that there was only one man capable of properly fulfilling the job, his Master of the Armoury, whose name was Jeremiah Obadiah SKILLET-SPROCK. SKILLET-SPROCK had all the qualifications; he was a huge man standing six feet seven inches and weighing nearly eighteen stones, (between ships he played in the second row for Devonport Services, and many Welsh selector cried because he had not been born in Llanelli). He was a handsome man with curly blond hair and steely blue eyes, and his prodigious strength was known to all (one night in the Crystal Bar in Plymouth, he was seen to quaff twenty-three pints of ale with rum chaser, then go to bed with five women, none of whom survived). On top of this he was very intelligent. Before answering the call of the sea, he had trained as a monk and was therefore able to read and write in English and Latin.

    Ala in all SKILLET-SPROCK was the ideal man for the job, and much to the delight of his First Lieutenant, entered into his new vocation with utmost zeal. The crew knew him by his initials, 'J.O.', and the hardened criminals would shudder at his approach. "Look out", they would mutter, "here comes J.O.", breathing a sigh of relief after he had passed them.

    J.O.'s reputation went before him, and whenever he was due to go on draft, every ship's company was in great fear that he should join their ship. One thing is sure, whichever ship J.O. served in was guaranteed to be a haven of tranquility. Eventually SKILLET-SPROCK became known by all by of his initials, not just those of his Christian names, so J.O. became J.O.S.S., or the 'JOSS'.

    After a long and successful career, the JOSS became too old to go to sea and lived out the rest of his days on a Non-Commissioned Service engagement as a Chief of Staff in Portsmouth Detention Quarters. Many years have passed since he went to the great Reg Office in the sky, although the Navy has seen many changes, including that of the change of title of Master of the Armoury to Master-at-Arms, Jeremiah Obadiah SKILLET-SPROCK has never been forgotten, and to this day every Master-at-Arms is proud to known as the 'JOSS'.

    The only man in each ship that can be entrusted with the maintenance of discipline.
  3. All except for one who was the MAA aboard HMS Nottingham circa 1993-94. Cannot remember his name, but he was a short and bearded twat who made it quite clear he was to be called MASTER.
  4. Now that they are retreaded "Service Police" (Now THERE'S a joke if ever) is the MAA now to be called Mullet of the Yard?
  5. or snake, grass, head of the post office !!!
  6. Played in the 2nd row for Devonport Services?

    In 1694?

    What at?
  7. Although the first couple of para's looked interesting I do believe after the introduction of Jeremiah the Joss it all went a bit, er...fictional Streaky.

    Good little dit mind.
  8. wot are you saying that a crusher makes things up!
  9. Good God no.

    Never in my experience.

    Never, ever.
  10. You've destroyed my illusions, now. I always thought SgtPB only ever spoke the truth, the whole truth and nothing but the proverbial!
  11. aint you head "Its a fit up pig"
  12. must improve my spelling or could it be my typing lol
  13. Had a Black RAF chap on my old squadron. We went on board and had the ships induction. Joss came along and introduced himself, let the RAF know who he was and that his rate was Master, from the back of the briefing room said crab was heard to say "I'm aint calling no white man master".
    Whole room pissed themselves, Joss replied "Ok" you and only You can call me Dave".
  14. As I was always told:


    :D :D :D

    Lovely bunch of fellas there, eager to help!
  15. I recognise Ben Nevis and Dave Loderick and spent some time doffing my lid for Mr Loderick on the Cherry B when he was the Joss.
  16. Ben was Killick Dog on the Glasgow mid '80s.
  17. Whatever happened to the terms 'Crusher' and 'Sherriff' ?

    As an aside, does anyone here recall the time they absorbed the Cox'n branch into the reggies ?
    Had a rather short nasty one (Ch Cox'n) in Chatham in the 70s, who thought he was the bee's knees (or is that the 'Dog's doodahs ? -- cough !!) - not a very nice chappie, I think he initiated the Dress Patrol, I believe he later went to be some sort of Fuhrer at RNDQ Pompey.

  18. He was also the Joss on KENT 99-2000 time.
  19. tiddlyoggy

    tiddlyoggy War Hero Book Reviewer

    Totally unique and wasted within his branch then. :thumright:
  20. He was forced to trnsfer when the Monks branch was combined with the Porno branch :w00t:

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