A consistent theme is that Army regiments are privately raised and funded by members of the nobility. In fact, as a determined thorn in the side of the system discovers in a time of need, any Gentleman of the rank of Knight or above is actually obliged to raise as many fighting men as his purse can sustain, in a time of national emergency.
In times of real civic emergency, Ankh-Morpork may also conscript a Citizens' Militia to assist in maintaining the rule of law and order. This tradition lives on in the form of the City Watch Special Constabulary.
As well as this, there is an old tradition of the city Guilds raising military units of their own to supplement the regular Army in time of need. The Assassins' Guild no doubt provides the equivalent of "Special Forces" where needed, and there is, in fact, a proud history of the Fools' Guild sending out entire battalions of Clowns to fight, as best they could, for the City. However, there is no record of this Guild having been asked to contribute fighting Clowns during the recent outbreak of football with Klatch over the elusive island of Leshp. Management of this expedition was left to gifted but self-taught amateur Fools. Before writing off the ability of Clowns to fight effectively, the existence of the martial art of Sloshi must be noted. This was recently revived by the gifted clown Mavolio Bent in a time of need.
There is a mysterious mention of a regiment called the Imperial Artists in the computer game Discworld Noir This may parody Roundworld (Britain's) Artists' Rifles. This is or was a Territorial (reserve) unit that drew its strength from the artier quarters of London around the British Museum, British Library, and principal art galleries. A member of this unit was Rhodan the sculptor.
At the time of Jingo, the impression is given that the Regiments are moribund, perhaps consisting at most of a handful of experienced NCO's about whom a new Regiment may be assembled and trained quickly in time of need. It is also known that there is an officers' training school in the Sto states that educates young ensigns and lieutenants for military service, in the manner of West Point, St Cyr or Sandhurst. So a new Regiment may be raised and trained reasonably quickly - there being no apparent shortage of sergeants and junior officers. However, from context in Monstrous Regiment, Vetinari appears to accept the value of having some sort of permanent Army about the place, as in the short gap between the two books, it does not seem likely that Lord Rust's regiments were disbanded after the Leshp emergency only to be called up again for service in Borogravia (where, very carefully, Vetinari puts another city noble in overall charge of the expedition.) This, in fact, may be Vetinari's insurance policy against another military coup d'etat: to allow the old nobles to raise permanent Regiments (thus draining their financial resources and leaving them less to do other things with). Posting them elsewhere with their energies occupied on active service which is actually beneficial to the City and pursuing Vetinari's foreign policy goals - but in a way that does not cost Vetinari or the City a penny - would seem to be in keeping with his character.
- Named army units on the Disc include:
- Lord Venturi's Medium Dragoons - Night Watch
- Lord Venturi's Heavy Infantry - Jingo, Monstrous Regiment
- Lord Selachii's Light Infantry - Night Watch, Monstrous Regiment
- the Duke of Eorle's First Heavy Infantry Regiment - Jingo
- Sir Samuel Vimes' First of Foot - Jingo
- the Imperial Artists. (Discworld Noir)
- Selachii Middleweight Mounted Interlopers
- The Royal Sto Plains Riflers
- The Sto Militia (the Cabbidgers)
- Prince Heinrich's Heavy Dragoons - Monstrous Regiment
- First battalion the Zlobenian 59th Bowmen - Monstrous Regiment
Generals and other military leaders around the Disc
- General Argavisti of Ephebe
- Imperiator Borvorius of Tsort
- General Callus Tacticus of Ankh-Morpork, later Genua
- General Fri'it of Omnia
- General Sir Ruthven Purdeigh
- General Sir Roderick Purdeigh
- Lord Ronald Rust of Ankh-Morpork
- Lord Alfred Rust of Ankh-Morpork
- Sergeant Simony of Omnia
- General Froc of Borogravia
- Shawn Ogg head of, and rest of the Lancre Army