General (abbreviated GEN) is the second-highest rank, and the highest active rank, of the Australian Army and was created as a direct equivalent of the British military rank of general; it is also considered a four-star rank.
|Service branch||Australian Army|
|Next higher rank||Field marshal|
|Next lower rank||Lieutenant general|
Prior to 1958, Australian generals (and field marshals) were only appointed in exceptional circumstances. In 1958, the position which is currently called Chief of the Defence Force was created, and since 1966, the rank of general has been held when an army officer is appointed to that position.
General is a higher rank than lieutenant general, but is lower than field marshal. General is the equivalent of admiral in the Royal Australian Navy and air chief marshal in the Royal Australian Air Force.
The following have held the rank of general in the Australian Army:
|William Birdwood, 1st Baron Birdwood
||1917||1865||1951||Appointed a general in the Australian Imperial Force in 1917, and made honorary field marshal in the Australian Army in 1925.[note 2]|
|Sir Harry Chauvel||1929||1865||1945||Chief of the General Staff (1923–30) and Inspector-in-Chief Volunteer Defence Corps (1940–45)|
|Sir John Monash||1929||1865||1931||Australian Corps (1918)|
|Sir Brudenell White||1940||1876||1940||Chief of the General Staff (1920–23, 1940)|
|Sir Thomas Blamey||1941||1884||1951||Promoted field marshal in 1951. Deputy Commander-in-Chief Middle East Command (1941–1942), General Officer Commanding-in-Chief of the Australian Military Forces (1942–45) and Commander of Allied Land Forces, South West Pacific Area (1942–45)|
|Sir John Wilton||1968||1910||1981||Chairman, Chiefs of Staff Committee (1966–70)|
|Sir Frank Hassett||1975||1918||2008||Chief of the Defence Force Staff (1976–77)|
|Sir Arthur MacDonald||1977||1919||1995||Chief of the Defence Force Staff (1977–79)|
|Sir Phillip Bennett||1984||1928||—||Chief of the Defence Force (1984–87) and Governor of Tasmania (1987–95)|
|Peter Gration||1987||1932||—||Chief of the Defence Force (1987–93)|
|John Baker||1995||1936||2007||Chief of the Defence Force (1995–98)|
|Sir Peter Cosgrove||2002||1947||—||Chief of the Defence Force (2002–05) and Governor-General of Australia (2014–19)|
|David Hurley||2011||1953||—||Chief of the Defence Force (2011–14) and Governor of New South Wales (2014–19) and Governor-General of Australia (2019–)|
|Angus Campbell||2018||—||—||Chief of the Defence Force (2018–)|
The following Australians have held the rank of general in the British Army:
|Sir John Hackett||1966||1910||1997||Deputy Chief of the Imperial General Staff (1963–66) and Commander-in-Chief of the British Army of the Rhine (1966–68)|
- Australian Army officer rank insignia are identical to British Army officer rank insignia, with the difference that Australian Army insignia have the word "Australia" below them.
- When Birdwood was promoted to field marshal in the British Army in 1925, he was given the honorary rank of field marshal in the Australian Army. He is one of only three Australian field marshals.
- "Chapter 4: Badges and Emblems" (PDF). Army Dress Manual. Canberra, ACT: Australian Army. 6 June 2014. p. 48. Archived from the original (PDF) on 3 April 2015.
- Coates, Henry John (2000). "Northcott, Sir John (1890–1966)". Australian Dictionary of Biography. Canberra: Australian National University. Retrieved 13 April 2009.