Guard - is the elite of the army

Tracing the meaning of the word "guard", we will be forced to turn to the fact that it first appeared there. It was created in 275 BC. er at the behest of the emperor Augustus. This armed formation went down in history as the Praetorian Guard.

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She guarded the Roman emperors, and during marches their praetorium (headquarters of the high command). However, this unit also served as a security service. Roman guardsmen enjoyed privileges: the right to carry weapons in Rome, a 16-year contract for service instead of an all-army 25-year-old, they were paid a hefty salary.

The Praetorians were subsequently stained by participation in many conspiracies and were disbanded.

Guard Definition

As we see, the history of the service of the praetorians (participation in many conspiracies) does not give an answer to the question of what the guard is. The definition of this concept in the modern sense is well known. The guards are mobilized for the selection, thoroughly trained elite units armed and equipped above the general army standards.

Initially, they played the role of guards of crowned persons, and later turned into a strategic reserve of the army high command, used at crucial moments in key battles.

the meaning of the word guard

What does the concept of "guard" imply? This is boundless devotion to the work of his ministry. This quality possessed medieval Swiss Guardsmen guarding the Vatican. The wise and authoritative head of the Catholic Church of the early 15th century, formerly known as a military officer, Giuliano della Rovere (who became Pope Julius the Second), for the first time officially took the Swiss Guardsmen to serve the Vatican.

01.22.1506 150 Swiss Guards, led by Captain Caspar von Zilenen, set foot on St. Peter's Square, where they were blessed to serve Pope Julius II. It was a good decision!

About European Guardsmen

Guard - is the willingness to die in battle. The Swiss, though they served for money, were brought up in the spirit of absolute loyalty to their overlord. They always fought frantically, considering it a disgrace to retreat. The only one in history, but a very significant battle of this unit was given in May 1527, when a huge army of Charles the Fifth attacked the Vatican.The attackers sought to destroy the institution of the papacy, and they did not succeed because of the steadfastness and loyalty of the guards. Of the 150 Swiss, 147 fell, but the other three rescued Pope Clement the Seventh, taking him to the Castle of Saint Angel. Since then, May 6 is considered the holiday of the Swiss Guard of the Vatican.

what is guard definition

Guard - is the selection of the best of the best among the soldiers. Later, after Italy, the guard units appeared in many European countries: England, France, Sweden, Russia. The example of Napoleonic Old Guard is indicative. The French called it the “elite of the elite,” random people could not get there. The candidate for the Old Guard had to meet the following criteria:

  • preliminary military service - not less than five years;
  • participation in at least two campaigns in which there are differences in at least two battles;
  • the final approval of the transfer to the guard by the candidate's brother-soldiers, who were considered with his real military achievements;
  • compulsory high growth and elevated physical condition.

The phrase of Brigadier General of the Old Guard Napoleon Pierre Jacques Etienne Cambronn entered the story, which he told in the fateful battle of Waterloo for his emperor.Surrounded by overwhelming enemy forces in response to a proposal for surrender, the commander of the First Regiment, the rangers of the rangers said: “The Guard dies, but does not surrender!”

History of the Soviet Guard

Guard - this is a national tradition. The Russian Guards history dates back to the reign of Peter the Great, who, by his decree from September 2, 1692, introduced the earlier amusing Preobrazhensky and Semenovsky regiments into the Russian Army. Eight years later, in the war with Sweden, the Guards regiments in the battle of Narva saved the Russian army from total defeat, becoming to the death between the advancing vanguard of the army of Charles XII and the Russian army retreating in panic.

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During World War II, Stalin reanimated the Guards tradition. The first to receive the title of the Guards were the 161st, 153rd, 127th, 100th rifle divisions, units of the Soviet Army, located in the epicenter of the battle near Moscow.


Today the word "guard" has become a household word. It sounds like a synonym for valor and loyalty to duty, the ability to resist the enemy and defeat him with fortitude, not by quantity, but by skill, faith, in the end.At the same time, the guard in the modern sense is a specific military unit honoring its own special traditions. It is characteristic that today, as was the case in history before, military personnel consider it an honor to serve in them.

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