An equerry (pronEng|ˈɛkwərɪ or IPA|/ɪˈkwɛrɪ/, originated from the French word "écurie" (stable), and related to the French word "écuyer" (squire) ) is an officer of honour. Historically, it was a senior attendant with responsibilities for the horses of a person of rank. In contemporary use, it is a personal attendant, usually upon a Sovereign, a member of a Royal Family, or a national representative. They are equivalent to Aides-de-Camp, but the term is specific to the Commonwealth of Nations.


Australian equerries may be appointed on an "ad hoc" basis to the Queen of Australia, to the Governor General, or to an overseas visiting dignitary.

While maintaining the tradition that all equerries must be drawn from its military, Australia is the only Commonwealth realm to expand the eligible class of soldiers beyond commissioned officers to include non-commissioned officers. [ [http://www.defence.gov.au/dpe/pac/V2_Ch10_Pt3.htm Australian Defence Force Pay and Conditions Manual] ]


Canadian equerries are most frequently appointed to serve visiting members of the Canadian Royal Family, and are drawn from the commissioned officers of the Canadian Forces. The equerry appointed for the Queen of Canada is a senior officer, typically a Major, while the equerry appointed for children of the Monarch is a junior officer, typically a Captain. The equerry forms part of the Royal entourage, which can also include personal bodyguards, personal secretaries, and ladies-in-waiting.

Major William Foster of the 12e Régiment blindé du Canada, an armoured regiment of the Canadian Forces Land Force Command, is the current Canadian Equerry to the Queen of Canada. [ [http://www.gnb.ca/cnb/Promos/royal/rv%20-%20e.pdf New Brunswick Royal Visit Handbook, 2002] ] He is referred to as the Queen's Canadian Equerry only while the Queen is present in Canada in exercise of her role as head of state.

Canadian equerries are also sometimes appointed to serve national representatives of the country. Colonel the Hon Henry Jackman of The Governor General's Horse Guards, Canada's Household Cavalry regiment, is the Equerry to Akaash Maharaj, in the latter's role as head of UNICEF Team Canada. [ [http://www.theglobeandmail.com/servlet/Page/document/v5/content/subscribe?user_URL=http://www.theglobeandmail.com%2Fservlet%2Fstory%2FLAC.20070217.OMAN17%2FTPStory%2F%3Fquery%3Dakaash%2Bmaharaj&ord=13231&brand=theglobeandmail&force_login=true "He Lives by the Sword"] , "Globe and Mail", February 17, 2007]


In medieval and modern Germany, a "stallmeister" (literally, "stable master") or "hofstallmeister" ("court stable master") was one of the highest noble officials in a princely or royal court, responsible for the supervision of the manorial stables. The stable servants were subordinate to him. Out of this rank developed the office of marshal. In present parlance, "stallmeister" means Stable Master.

New Zealand

New Zealand equerries are appointed to serve the Queen of New Zealand only for the duration of a royal visit to the country, and are always drawn from the officers of the New Zealand Defence Force, typically captains, flight lieutenants, and lieutenants, RNZN.

Squadron Leader Leanne Woon of the Operational Support Squadron, part of the Royal New Zealand Air Force, was the New Zealand Equerry to the Queen of New Zealand during the most recent royal visit in 2002. She is the only woman to serve as an equerry to the monarch anywhere in the Commonwealth. [ [http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/main.jhtml?xml=%2Fnews%2F2002%2F02%2F23%2Fwqueen23.xml "Transsexual MP greets the Queen as she lands in New Zealand"] , "The Daily Telegraph", February 22, 2002]

United Kingdom

British equerries are appointed only to senior members of the British Royal Family, and are drawn only from senior officers of the British Armed Forces.

There are now three equerries to the Queen of the United Kingdom, and a larger number of extra equerries - usually retired senior officers with some connection to the Royal Household. The extra equerries are rarely if ever required for duty but are in attendance on the Sovereign on a daily basis. For some years the Queen's senior equerry has also held the position of Deputy Master of the Household.

The Queen's permanent equerry is an officer of major rank or equivalent, recruited from the three services of the British Armed Forces in turn. Many previous equerries have gone on to reach higher rank.

The Queen's temporary equerry is a Captain of the Coldstream Guards, who provides part-time attendance. When not required for duty an equerry has additional regimental or staff duties. Senior members of the British Royal Family each also have one or two equerries.

The Crown Equerry is in charge of the Royal Mews Department and holds a distinct office.

Equerries to the British Monarch

Individuals who have served as Equerry to the Queen of the United Kingdom include:

*Commander Heber Ackland, MVO Royal Navy 2004 - 2007
*Major James Duckworth-Chad, MVO Coldstream Guards 2001-2004
*Lieutenant-Colonel Anthony Charles Richards, LVO Welsh Guards 1999-
*Squadron Leader Simon Brailsford, MVO Royal Air Force 1998-2001
*Lieutenant-Commander Toby Williamson, MVO Royal Navy 1995-1998
*Lieutenant-Colonel Sir Guy Acland, Bt LVO Royal Artillery 1994-1999
*Major James Patrick, MVO Irish Guards 1992-1995
*Squadron Leader David Walker, OBE, MVO Royal Air Force 1989-1992
*Lieutenant-Commander Timothy Laurence, MVO Royal Navy 1986-1989
*Major Hugh Lindsay, LVO 9th/12th Royal Lancers 1983-1986
*Squadron Leader Adam Wise, LVO, MBE Royal Air Force 1980-1983
*Lieutenant-Commander Robert Guy, MVO Royal Navy 1977-1980
*Lieutenant-Colonel Sir Blair Stewart-Wilson, KCVO Scots Guards 1976-1994
*Major G R S Broke, MVO Royal Artillery 1974-1977
*Squadron Leader Peter Beer, LVO Royal Air Force 1971-1974
*Lieutenant-Commander Jock Slater, LVO Royal Navy 1968-1971
*Major Charles Howard, LVO 1st Queen's Dragoon Guards 1965-1968
*Lieutenant-Commander John Garnier, LVO Royal Navy 1962-65 (temporary)
*Squadron Leader M J P Walmsley, Royal Air Force c. 1964
*Squadron Leader H S Carver, Royal Air Force c. 1961 (temporary)
*Lieutenant-Commander P C D Campbell, Royal Navy c. 1959
*Captain Richard Vickers, LVO Royal Tank Regiment 1956-1959 (temporary)
*Lieutenant-Colonel The Lord Plunket, KCVO Irish Guards 1954-1975
*Lieutenant-Commander David Loram, LVO Royal Navy 1954-1957
*Wing Commander Peter Horsley, AFC Royal Air Force 1952-1953
*Captain the Lord John Spencer, 8th Earl Spencer, MVO Royal Scots Greys 1950 - 1954 [cite web |url= http://www.royal.gov.uk/output/page155.asp |title= Diana, Princess of Wales biography |author= Royal Household of Buckingham Palace |format= html |work= Royal.gov.uk, the official website of the British Monarchy |quote= Earl Spencer was Equerry to George VI from 1950 to 1952, and to The Queen from 1952 to 1954. ]
*Captain Sir Harold Campbell, KCVO DSO Royal Navy 1936-1954
*Captain Sir Bryan Godfrey-Faussett, Royal Navy 1910-1936
*Captain the Hon. Sir Seymour Fortescue Royal Navy 1893-1910 (brother of the Hon. Sir John William Fortescue)cite news |url= http://www.time.com/time/magazine/article/0,9171,927931,00.html |title= The Crown |work= Time |date= 27 May 1929 |author= |quote= Sir John's brother, Capt. Hon. Sir Seymour Fortescue, equerry-in-waiting to King George since 1893, author of a book of memoirs, "Looking Back." ]

See also

* Crown Equerry
* Master of the Horse


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Look at other dictionaries:

  • Equerry — Eq uer*ry (?; 277), n.; pl. {Equerries}. [F. [ e]curie stable, for older escurie, escuirie (confused somewhat with F. [ e]cuyer, OF. escuyer, squire), LL. scuria, OHG. skiura, sc?ra, barn, shed, G. scheuer, from a root meaning to cover, protect,… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • equerry — (n.) 1590s, short for groom of the equirrie, from esquiry stables (1550s), from M.Fr. escuerie (Mod.Fr. écurie), perhaps from M.L. scuria stable, from O.H.G. scura barn; or from O.Fr. escuier groom, from V.L. scutarius shield bearer. In either… …   Etymology dictionary

  • equerry — ► NOUN (pl. equerries) 1) an officer of the British royal household who attends members of the royal family. 2) historical an officer of the household of a prince or noble who had charge over the stables. ORIGIN Old French esquierie company of… …   English terms dictionary

  • equerry — [ek′wər ē, ē kwer′ē] n. pl. equerries [altered (after L equus, horse) < Fr écurie < OFr escuerie, status of a squire: see ESQUIRE] 1. Historical an officer in charge of the horses of a royal or noble household 2. an officer who is a… …   English World dictionary

  • equerry — [16] Nowadays in Britain simply royal attendants, equerries’ long and traditional association with the royal stables has led to association of the word equerry with Latin equus ‘horse’, but in fact the two are quite unrelated. Equerry originally… …   The Hutchinson dictionary of word origins

  • equerry — [16] Nowadays in Britain simply royal attendants, equerries’ long and traditional association with the royal stables has led to association of the word equerry with Latin equus ‘horse’, but in fact the two are quite unrelated. Equerry originally… …   Word origins

  • equerry — UK [ˈekwərɪ] / US noun [countable] Word forms equerry : singular equerry plural equerries an official who helps a member of the British royal family in performing their duties …   English dictionary

  • equerry — [[t]ɪkwe̱ri, AM e̱kwəri[/t]] equerries N COUNT: oft N to n An equerry is an officer of a royal household or court who acts as a personal assistant to a member of the royal family …   English dictionary

  • equerry — noun (plural ries) Etymology: modification of Middle French ecurie, escuyrie squires (collectively), duties of a squire, care of horses, stable, from escuier squire more at esquire Date: 1591 1. an officer of a prince or noble charged with the… …   New Collegiate Dictionary

  • equerry — /ek weuh ree, i kwer ee/, n., pl. equerries. 1. an officer of a royal or similar household, charged with the care of the horses. 2. an officer of the British royal household who attends the sovereign or other member of the royal family. [1520 30; …   Universalium

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