Chosen Man was a something of a ad hoc rank during the Napoleonic Wars, being roughly equivalent to a lance Corporal rank. Although the rank held little to no command authority it did grant the holder immunity to unpleasant camp duties such as latrine digging and came with a small increase in pay.

In Bernard Cornwell's novels, the chosen men were described as the best and most reliable Rifles (Sharpe's Battle); and  in the television movies they were Sharpe's squad, and consisted of Harris, Hagman, Perkins, Cooper and Harper and wore 'the white cord' the emblem that they were a cut above.