Military Hardware: The History of our Names

February 18, 2015

"What's in a name? That which we call a rose by any other name would smell as sweet" - Shakespeare

Romeo may not place much authority in a name, but we give ours a little more thought here at Alice Made This. The next couple of months will see the launch of our new Uniformity collection, including a selection of cufflinks and lapel pins produced using our Military Hardware process.

Inspired by the military symbols for land, sea and air, the new range is centred around circles, diamonds and squares, each named after a notable military general. Orde for the circle, Benedict for the square and Arnold for the diamond. But where did these names come from and who were these generals?

Major-General Orde Charles Wingate (26 Feb 1903 - 24 March 1944)

Orde was a bit of a character. Churchill's personal physician once described him as "a borderline case" and, apparently, he often wore an alarm clock around his wrist. A good look for any well respected military man. He was a British Army officer who created special military units in Palestine in the 1930s. As one of the founders of modern guerilla warfare, he created the Chindits, a group of airborne troops who worked behind enemy lines against Japan in WW2. He died in 1944 after his bomber crashed into the jungle on the hills of Manipur. 

Brigadier-General Benedict Arnold (3 January 1740 - 12 June 1801)

Benedict Arnold was more of a controversial figure. Having been an American general during the American revolution, he soon defected to the British Army. He obtained command of the fortifications at West Point, New York and planned to surrender it to the British forces. Meanwhile he was carrying out secret communications with the British where he revealed troop locations, strength and supply depots. His plans were exposed in 1780 and Benedict Arnold crossed the pond and moved to London where he became Brigadier-General of the British Army. He was well received by King George III and the Tories, but frowned upon by the Whigs. Arnold died of delirium in 1801 and has since been immortalised as a character in Assassins Creed III. 

Despite their colourful histories, these strong military names represent the regimented engineering and raw materials that have gone into creating our new collection. We can't wait to share more information soon.