Rank insignia of a sergeant major of the Bundeswehr at the box suit

The First Sergeant ( abbreviated to HptFw / in lists: HF ) called in Germany a soldier in the third- highest rank sergeant in the army. At the German navy is called the rank of major boatswain.

Soldiers in the rank HptFw limits can be obtained from enlisted men and officers without Portepee commands within the limits of the superior regulation ( VorgV ).

The rank HptFw can achieve professional soldiers, regular soldiers and reservists ordered, the seniority falls lately by the reorganization of the sergeant 's career. The service level can be achieved at the earliest to Master Sergeant, and with a total service life of 8 years with a corresponding assessment one year after promotion. Sergeant be used as company sergeant, platoon leader, company squad leader, deputy platoon leader and in bars.

When the Bundeswehr HptFw until 1957 was, well, reintroduced two years after its founding, this time as a rank. HptFw be according to the Federal pay scale ( BBesO ) with A8mA salaried ( with duty allowance ).

Other forces

The equivalent to this prominent OR7 - commissioned officer rank in the armed forces and the NVA, but also a number of armed forces of the former Warsaw Pact, was the OR7 service grade to Master Sergeant / Straschi sershant.

In contrast to the German Army in the Wehrmacht and in the NPA the Sergeant not a rank, but the official or service position description for the company sergeant-major was (English Company sergeant ), resulting mainly in translations in confusion.


The sergeant major of the armed forces was introduced in 1938 and was not a rank (unlike the Federal Armed Forces), but the official position description for the company sergeant-major, or " spit ". This replaced the previous designation "master sergeant of the troops " and was usually a chief petty officer under the rank of a sergeant or master sergeant. Features were two parallel stitched, 9 mm wide, silver-colored Unteroffizierslitzen that " piston rings " above both cuffs on his uniform jacket and greatcoat. In war, there was also the official position designation " First Sergeant Diensttuer ". For this purpose, arrived in exceptional cases Unterfeldwebel (comparable to today's Staff Sergeant ) are used.

In the Waffen- SS of the SS staff sergeant the spit, company sergeant-major or " First Sergeant Diensttuer " was comparable.


Also in the National People's Army of the GDR the Sergeant was not a grade as in the armed forces, but the name of the service position of a company sergeant. For this purpose, mainly Sergeant or service senior master sergeants were used. The function insignia was, as in the Wehrmacht, the well-known two parallel stitched, 9 mm wide, silver-colored Unteroffizierslitzen that " piston rings " above both cuffs of his uniform jacket and greatcoat.

With the introduction of the service level group of cadets this service position cadets were reserved.