Just out of curiosity, was the badge spelt "Marshall" with a double 'l' for a special purpose?

"Marshall" with a double 'l' is the name of four famous men, while "marshal" means:

an administrative officer of a U.S. judicial district who performs duties similar to those of a sheriff.

which would be more in keeping with "Deputy". Perhaps it was spelt after the name of some famous men on purpose?


5 Answers 5


According to Merriam-Webster (American), Macmillan British and American, dictionary.com (American), the Oxford English Dictionary (access necessary e.g. through a university network), Longman (British), and Cambridge Dictionaries Online (British), marshal seems to be the variant more commonly used for the official/military title (in both British and American usage), hence I say the badge name should be changed. As mentioned before, the double-L variant mostly occurs as a last name. Some dictionaries list it as that, others don't at all.

Wikipedia may or may not be trusted in this matter, while http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Marshal claims

Marshal (also spelled marshall, more commonly in British English than American English)

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Marshall says

Marshall may refer to:

  • "Marshall", an American spelling for the military rank of marshal

It would seem more correct with the one "l", although passable either way. But sure, we can rename that (next deploy).

Oh, and for the record - re

In short, /blame Marc Gravell

I deny all blame here!

  • 15
    Can't blame you.. your last name ends with ll as well :) Aug 22, 2011 at 12:21
  • 24
    Marc Gravellllllllllllllllllllllllllllll Aug 22, 2011 at 13:52
  • 1
    @JeffAtwood I’m now hypnotised.
    – kinokijuf
    Jan 29, 2012 at 20:10

I have a old family deputy US Marshall badge and have found 1890s spelling with 2 L's i.e.

red dog saloon Wyatt Earp gun

I think it was a variant from British colonial times:

enter image description here


I already wondered that and may I quote from Wikipedia:

Marshal (also spelled marshall, more commonly in British English than American English), is a word used in several official titles of various branches of society.

  • 5
    In short, /blame Marc Gravell
    – Tim Stone
    Aug 22, 2011 at 11:10
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    Huh, I was just looking myself and Wiktionary suggests "marshall" is an alternative US spelling - not British. And all my British English spell checkers on this machine here go with "marshal", and only accept Marshall when capitalised.
    – DMA57361
    Aug 22, 2011 at 11:11
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    @DMA57361: Well, we could ask on English. Aug 22, 2011 at 11:16
  • @Strait we could, but the point is "marshall" is valid somewhere, so does it really matter since it's pretty clear what is meant? Also, Thursagen - the asker - is a very high rep English user anyway, so is more than capable of handling that themselves if necessary (it's probably not the kind of question they want thou', I suspect).
    – DMA57361
    Aug 22, 2011 at 11:17
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    "Marshal" is the original spelling apparently. It comes from Old French, circa 13c. "Marshall" is a variant spelling, that seems to have come from George C. Marshall, a U.S. Secretary of State 1947-49.
    – Thursagen
    Aug 22, 2011 at 11:20
  • Maréchal, from mareschal, from marhskalk circa 800 AD. It originally designated troops charged with caring for horses, a lowly task, but nonetheless delegated to trusted men due to the high value of horses.
    – Kheldar
    Sep 3, 2011 at 17:30

It would be simpler to just rename it to 'Serialize'.

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