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Best Order of Chivalry of All Time

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    1

    Order of Lenin

    The Order of Lenin (Russian: Орден Ленина, Orden Lenina), named after the leader of the Russian October Revolution, was the highest decoration bestowed by the Soviet Union. The order was awarded to: From 1944 to 1957, before the institution of specific length of service medals, the Order of Lenin was also used to reward 25 years of conspicuous military service. Those who were awarded the titles "Hero of the Soviet Union" and "Hero of Socialist Labour" were also given the order as part of the award. It was also bestowed on cities, companies, factories, regions, military units and ships. Corporate entities, factories, various educational institutions and military units who received the said Order applied the full name of the order into their official titles. The order was established by the Central Executive Committee on April 6, 1930. The first design of the Order of Lenin was made of silver with some lightly gold-plated features. It was a round badge with a central disc featuring Vladimir Lenin's profile surrounded by smokestacks, a tractor and a building, possibly a power plant. A thin red-enamelled border and a circle of wheat panicles surrounded the disc. At the top was a
    7.11
    9 votes
    2
    Grand Order of Queen Jelena

    Grand Order of Queen Jelena

    The Grand Order of Queen Jelena (Croatian: Velered kraljice Jelene), or more fully the Grand Order of Queen Jelena with Sash and Morning Star (Velered kraljice Jelene s lentom i Danicom), is an order of the Republic of Croatia. It was established in 1995. It ranks second in the Croatian order of precedence after the Grand Order of King Tomislav. The order, along with the Grand Order of King Petar Krešimir IV, is awarded to dignitaries, other state officials and heads of international organizations for their contributions to the international reputation and status of the Republic of Croatia; to Croatian and foreign statesmen and parliamentary and government leaders for exceptional contributions to the independence and integrity of the Republic of Croatia, the development and construction of the Republic of Croatia, and for their personal exceptional contributions to the development of relationships between Croatia and the Croatian people and other countries and peoples; and to senior armed forces officers for exceptional contributions in the formulation of military strategy and doctrine, for merit in developing the Croatian armed forces, and for particular accomplishment in the
    7.25
    8 votes
    3
    Order of Saint George

    Order of Saint George

    • Category: Monarchical Order
    • Founders: Charles I of Hungary
    The Order of St. George Hungarian: Szent György Vitézei Lovagrend, was the first secular chivalric order in the world established by King Charles I of Hungary in 1326. The Order, being the earliest known secular chivalric order in Europe was founded by King Charles I of Hungary as the Fraternal Society of Knighthood of St. George. The precise date of its foundation is not known, however, based on the text written in its Statutes, it was certainly in existence on St. George's Day on the 23rd of April, 1326. The order flourished during the reign of Charles and achieved greater success under the reign of his son Louis I of Hungary. After the death of Louis, the Hungarian throne became the subject of a violent dispute between his relations and the Hungarian kingdom dissolved into civil war destroying the original Society. All that is known about the Order in terms of its mission, composition, obligations and activities were sourced from the only surviving artifact which describe the Society in its statutes records. Based on the Statutes, although the Society of St. George was a political and honorable body, Charles had infused the ideals of chivalry into the Society promoting the
    8.14
    7 votes
    4
    Italian orders of knighthood

    Italian orders of knighthood

    There are five orders of knighthood awarded in recognition of service to the Italian Republic. Below these sit a number of other decorations, associated and otherwise, that do not confer knighthoods. However, the former Royal House of Savoy also continue to award knighthoods in three orders of chivalry previously recognised by the Kingdom of Italy. The degrees of knighthood, not all of which apply to all orders, are Knight (Cavaliere abbreviated Cav.), Officer (Ufficiale abbreviated Uff.), Commander (Commendatore abbreviated Comm.), Grand Officer (Gr. Uff.), Knight Grand Cross (Cav. Gr. Croce) and Knight Grand Cross with cordon. Italian citizens may not use in the territory of the Republic honours or distinctions conferred on them by non-national orders or foreign states, unless authorised by decree President of the Council of Ministers. The use of awards of the Holy See (including the Equestrian Order of the Holy Sepulchre) is subject to permission, while the use of those of the Sovereign Military Order of Malta is unregulated. The Order of Merit of the Italian Republic effectively replaced as national orders the Supreme Order of the Most Holy Annunciation (1362), the Order of
    8.80
    5 votes
    5
    Sovereign Military Order of Malta

    Sovereign Military Order of Malta

    • Category: Military order
    The Sovereign Military Hospitaller Order of Saint John of Jerusalem of Rhodes and of Malta (Italian: Sovrano Militare Ordine Ospedaliero di San Giovanni di Gerusalemme di Rodi e di Malta), also known as the Sovereign Military Order of Malta (SMOM), Order of Malta or Knights of Malta, is a Roman Catholic lay religious order, traditionally of military, chivalrous, noble nature. It is the world's oldest surviving order of chivalry. The Sovereign Military Order of Malta is headquartered in Rome, and is widely considered a sovereign subject of international law. SMOM is the modern continuation of the original medieval order of Saint John of Jerusalem, known as the Knights Hospitaller, a group founded in Jerusalem about 1050 as an Amalfitan hospital to provide care for poor and sick pilgrims to the Holy Land. After the conquest of Jerusalem in 1099 during the First Crusade, it became a military order under its own charter. Following the loss of Christian held territories of the Holy Land to Muslims, the Order operated from Rhodes (1310–1523), and later from Malta (1530–1798), over which it was sovereign. Although this state came to an end with the ejection of the Order from Malta by
    6.57
    7 votes
    6
    Order of Vitéz

    Order of Vitéz

    • Founders: Imre Thököly
    Vitéz, or Order of Vitéz (Vitézi Rend in Hungarian) (frequently spelled in English as 'Vitez') was a Hungarian order of merit which was founded in 1678. It was awarded as a state honour during two periods of Hungarian history. The Order of Vitéz extant today as an order of chivalry under protection of royal family of Hungary. The Order of Vitéz (the Hungarian word "Vitéz"' means valiant or brave) was established in 1678 by Imre Thököly (1657-1705). He was a Hungarian nobleman who led a rebellion against Leopold I of Austria when he suspended the Constitution and placed Hungary under a Directorate headed by the Grand Master of the Teutonic Order. Thököly gathered behind him a force of disaffected Hungarians composed mainly of disbanded soldiers and peasantry. His followers were known as 'kuruc' (crusaders), a designation that was also used a century earlier by the followers of another rebel leader, György (George) Dózsa. Appointment to the Vitéz Order was Thököly's way to designate and promote some of his lowly-born followers who distinguished themselves in the struggle and around whom other newer rebels could gather with confidence. In August 1920 the Vitéz Order was revived by
    8.40
    5 votes
    7

    Order of Ontario

    The Order of Ontario is the most prestigious official honour in the Canadian province of Ontario. Instituted in 1986 by Lieutenant Governor Lincoln Alexander, on the advice of the Cabinet under Premier David Peterson, the civilian order is administered by the Governor-in-Council and is intended to honour current or former Ontario residents for conspicuous achievements in any field. The Order of Ontario is intended to honour any current or former long time resident of Ontario who has demonstrated a high level of individual excellence and achievement in any field, demonstrating "the best of Ontario's caring and diverse society and [whose] lives have benefited society in Ontario and elsewhere." Although Canadian citizenship is not a requirement, elected or appointed members of a governmental body are ineligible as long as they hold office. There are no limits on how many can belong to the order or be inducted at one time, though the average number of new members stands at 24 per year. The process of finding qualified individuals begins with submissions from the public to the Ontario Honours and Awards Secretariat, which consists of the Chief Justice of Ontario (who serves as the
    6.29
    7 votes
    8
    Order of Prince Danilo I

    Order of Prince Danilo I

    • Category: Monarchical Order
    • Founders: Danilo I, Prince of Montenegro
    The Order of Prince Danilo I of Montenegro (Montenegrin: Орден Књаза Данила I, Orden Knjaza Danila I) was an order of the Principality, and later Kingdom, of Montenegro. It is currently granted privately, by the head of the House of Petrović-Njegoš, Nicholas Petrović Njegoš II. The Order was the first Montenegrin dynastic and state Order established by Prince Danilo Petrović Njegoš in 1853, as the Order of Danilo I for the Independence of Montenegro in 1852-53. This Decoration is still awarded to prominent champions of the preservation of Montenegrin independence and the conditions by which the Order is awarded were defined by Statute. Alterations were made to the appearance of the original decoration created by Prince Danilo and during the rule of His Majesty King Nikola I Petrović Njegoš the Order underwent two restructures. During the first restructure in 1861, three classes were introduced, while in the second restructure, from 1873, an additional class was added, so that not only is there a star in the 1st class but also a 2nd class with star was introduced. On Saturday June 4, 2005, Cetinje, the old Royal Capital of Montenegro, hosted the first gala ceremony of the Order in
    7.17
    6 votes
    9

    Order of Manuel Amador Guerrero

    The Orden de Manuel Amador Guerrero (Order of Manuel Amador Guerrero in English) is the highest honour of Panama. It is named after Manuel Amador Guerrero, the first president of Panama. The order was established on the 50th anniversary of Panama's independence on 29 October 1953, and has been awarded to distinguished people (Panamanians and non-Panamanians) in the sciences, arts, and politics for over 50 years. There are several grades of the honour:
    8.20
    5 votes
    10

    Osminieh Order

    The Order of Osmanieh, Order of Osmanie, Order of Osmania was a military decoration of the Ottoman Empire, created in January 1862 by Sultan Abdulaziz. With the obsolescence of the Nichan Iftikhar, this became the second highest order in the Empire, ranking below the High Order of Honour. It was awarded by the Sultan to Ottoman civil servants and military leaders for outstanding services to the state. Generally, it could not be awarded to women, but exceptions appear to have been made at the Sultan's discretion. From 1915 until the end of the First World War, all classes could be awarded with sabers when awarded for achievements in military operations. This was an augmentation to the existing classes of the award, and it is estimated that about 5% of the awards from this period were with sabers. The order was originally established in three classes. In 1867 the order was expanded to four classes, plus an augmented first class set with brilliants or diamonds (This does not include the awards with sabers, which were not separate classes, but did constitute separate awards). The order was restricted (for Turkish recipients) to 50 members of the first class, 200 members of the second
    8.20
    5 votes
    11

    Order of Saint Anthony

    • Category: Confraternal Order
    The Order of Saint Anthony was a Bavarian military order founded in 1382 by Duke Albert of Bavaria. Albert, who had publicly resolved to war against the Turks, re-established this French order to aid in fulfillment of his oath. The knights of this order wore a collar of gold and a hermit's girdle from which hung a crutch and a little bell.
    7.00
    6 votes
    12
    8.00
    5 votes
    13
    Order of the Three Stars

    Order of the Three Stars

    Order of the Three Stars (Latvian: Triju Zvaigžņu ordenis) is order awarded for merits in service for Latvia. It was established in 1924 in remembrance of founding of Latvia. Its motto is "Per aspera ad astra". The Order has five ranks and three grades of medals of honour. The cross of the order is white enamel cross within gilded edges. In the center of the front side of the cross there is blue enamel medallion with three golden five-point stars on it. The reverse side has gilded medallion with inscriptions "Per aspera ad astra" and "Latvijas Republika — 1918.g.18. novembris" (English: Republic of Latvia - 18 November 1918). The Stars are first and second rate orders. The first rate order and the second rate order, (the great star and the small star, respectively) have similar design and differ only in size. The stars are in shape of five point star made of silver with blue enamel medallion with three golden five-point stars in its center. On its edge there is inscription "Par Tēviju" (English: For Fatherland). Chain of the Order is awarded to Commander of the Grand Cross in exceptional cases. It has ten gilded links with alternately chiseled images of three stars, fire-cross,
    8.00
    5 votes
    14
    Order of the Norwegian Lion

    Order of the Norwegian Lion

    The Order of the Norwegian Lion was a Norwegian order of knighthood established by King Oscar II of Norway on 21 January 1904, "in memory of the glorious events associated with Norway’s venerable Coat of Arms". The order was established as an equivalent in rank to the Swedish Order of the Seraphim as knights of the Norwegian Order of St. Olav ranked below the knights of the Seraphim in the shared Swedo-Norwegian Royal court. However the expansion of the Norwegian honours system received mixed reactions amongst Norwegian politicians. The Union between Sweden and Norway was dissolved in 1905 before any Norwegian knights had been appointed and King Haakon VII of Norway chose not to appoint any new knights. King Haakon VII formally repealed the order in a Court resolution on 11 March 1952. The last living knight was Gustaf VI Adolf of Sweden who died in 1973.
    6.83
    6 votes
    15
    Hero of Ukraine

    Hero of Ukraine

    Hero of Ukraine (Ukrainian: Герой України, transliteration: Heroy Ukrayiny) is the highest state decoration that can be conferred upon an individual citizen by the Government of Ukraine. The title was created in 1998 by President Leonid Kuchma and as of 25 August 2012 the total number of awards is 275. The award is divided into two classes of distinction: one for heroism and the other for achievement in labor. There has been controversy over some of the awards, including allegations that they have either been politically motivated or given to those undeserving of the award. The origin of the "Hero of Ukraine" award can be traced to the highest decorations established in the USSR, of which Ukraine was a constituent republic: Hero of the Soviet Union, established on 16 April 1934, and the Hero of Socialist Labor, established on 27 December 1938. Most of the recipients of the former title received it for heroic military action (with Soviet cosmonauts being a notable exception), while those awarded the latter were recognized for their contributions to national economy and culture. The awards could be given to the same individual more than once, and only the Presidium of the Supreme
    7.80
    5 votes
    16
    Order of the Companions of Honour

    Order of the Companions of Honour

    The Order of the Companions of Honour is an order of the Commonwealth realms. It was founded by King George V in June 1917, as a reward for outstanding achievements in the arts, literature, music, science, politics, industry, or religion. It is sometimes regarded as the junior order to the Order of Merit. The order consists of the Sovereign, plus no more than 65 Companions of Honour, with, originally, a quota of 45 members for the United Kingdom, seven for Australia, two for New Zealand, and 11 for other Commonwealth realms. Additionally, foreigners from outside the realms may be added as honorary members. Membership of the order confers no title, or precedence, but recipients of this one-class order are entitled to use the post-nominal letters CH. Appointments can be made on the advice of prime ministers. For Canadians, the advice to the Sovereign can come from a variety of officials. The insignia of the order is in the form of an oval medallion with an oak tree, a shield with the Royal Arms of the United Kingdom hanging from one branch, and on the left a mounted knight in armour. The badge's clear blue border bears the motto IN ACTION FAITHFUL AND IN HONOUR CLEAR (Alexander
    9.00
    4 votes
    17
    Order of Saint Hubert

    Order of Saint Hubert

    The Bavarian Order of Saint Hubert was founded in 1444 or 1445 by Gerhard V, Duke of Jülich and Count of Ravensberg. He sought to commemorate his victory over the House of Egmond at the Battle of Linnich on 3 November, which is Saint Hubert's day. The establishment of the Order occurred during a long-term, intermittent territorial dispute, initially between the Dukes of Jülich and the Dukes of Gelder and Egmond, who were descended from a female line of the House of Jülich. The dispute began in the 1430s, when Arnold, Duke of Gelderland claimed the duchy of Jülich and the county of Ravensberg, and was resolved in the 1614 Treaty of Xanten, which established the United Duchies of Jülich-Cleves-Berg of the counties of Ravensberg and Mark with the duchies of Cleves, Jülich and Berg. In 1778, Charles Theodore, Duke of Jülich and Berg and the Count-Elector Palatine, succeeded his childless cousin, Maximilian III Joseph, Elector of Bavaria and brought the Order to Bavaria. Initially, the order was open to men and women, although limiting the number of male companions to sixty. It commemorated the conversion of Saint Hubert and his standing as the patron saint of hunters and knights. Over
    8.75
    4 votes
    18
    Order of Saint Michael

    Order of Saint Michael

    • Category: Monarchical Order
    • Founders: Louis XI of France
    The Order of Saint Michael (French: Ordre de Saint-Michel) was a French chivalric order, founded by Louis XI of France on 1 August 1469, in competitive response to the Burgundian Order of the Golden Fleece founded by Philip the Good, duke of Burgundy, Louis' chief competitor for the allegiance of the great houses of France, the Dukes of Orléans, Berry, and Brittany. As a chivalric order, its goal was to confirm the loyalty of its knights to the king. Originally, there were a limited number of knights, at first thirty-one, then increased to thirty-six including the king. An office of Provost was established in 1476. The Order of St Michael was the highest Order in France until it was superseded by the Order of the Holy Spirit. As would be expected, the first knights were among the most powerful nobles in France, close relatives of the king and a few from other royal houses in Europe. Originally, the number of members (called companions) was limited to thirty-five. In 1565, during the Wars of Religion, when loyalties were strained and essential, Charles IX increased the membership to fifty but there may have been as many as seven hundred knights under Henry III in 1574. The Order of
    10.00
    3 votes
    19

    Noble Order of Saint George of Rougemont

    • Category: Confraternal Order
    The Confraternity of the Knights of Saint-George of Burgundy The noble Brotherhood of Saint George was created in 1390 by two gentlemen of Franche-Comté to honor the relics of the megalomartyr that had been brought back from the Holy Land. Philibert de Mollans, squire to the Duke of Burgundy, was its main driving force. His second-in-command, Jehan d'Andelot, was the son of Sir Jean of Andelot-les-Sallins, and of Marie of Usier, Lady of Vaudrey and Rougemont, where lived the precursors and was held the annual chapter. By the time Philip the Good created the Order of the Golden Fleece, on the 10 January 1430, there were 24 holders: after the Grand-Master came immediately His Majesty William III of Vienna, in order of precedence. The governor gathered around 1435 or 1440 a certain number of Knights to honor the relics in a chapel that he owned close to the city of Rougemont. Then he decided to celebrate every year the day of the St. George, patron saint of the nobility because he had also been a knight, and was often represented riding his horse with a spear. The qualities required were sixteen quarterings of nobility, catholic religion, birth in "Franche Comté", to be sixteen years
    8.50
    4 votes
    20
    Order of Ernst August

    Order of Ernst August

    The Order of Ernst August was founded 15 December 1865 by King George V of Hanover in memory of his father Ernest Augustus I of Hanover. The order was awarded for both civil and military merit. It was divided in five classes: In 1866, Hannover was defeated and annexed by Prussia at the end of the Austro-Prussian War. As a result Prussia dissolved the three Hanoverian orders of knighthood. George V and his successors still continued to award the Order of Ernst August, but now as a House Order, in the same manner of many non-regnant royal houses. Between 1865 and 1900, forty two Grand Crosses were granted. Most of them after the royal family's expulsion from Hanover in 1866. Seventeen Hanoverian and twenty five foreign Grand Crosses are recorded. . The medal is a gold Maltese cross, enamelled white, with small gold ball on eight points and four royal crowns in the corners. At the center is a medallion of red enamel with the monogram of Ernest Augustus (EA), and around, there was a band of blue enamel with the motto of the order "SUSCIPERE ET FINIRE" in gold. The back displays the founding date "DEC MDCCCLXV XV" with the initials of the king who had granted the order George V
    8.50
    4 votes
    21

    Saskatchewan Order of Merit

    The Saskatchewan Order of Merit is a civilian honour for merit in the Canadian province of Saskatchewan. Instituted in 1985 by Lieutenant Governor Frederick Johnson, on the advice of the Cabinet under Premier Grant Devine, the order is administered by the Governor-in-Council and is intended to honour current or former Saskatchewan residents for conspicuous achievements in any field, being thus described in law as the highest honour amongst all others conferred by the Saskatchewan Crown. The Saskatchewan Order of Merit is intended to honour any Canadian citizen currently or formerly resident in Saskatchewan who has demonstrated a high level of individual excellence and achievement in any field, improving the "social, cultural and economic well-being of the province and its residents"; the process of finding such individuals begins with call for nominations put out each spring by the Saskatchewan Honours Advisory Council. There are no limitations on population, but only ten new members may be created each year. The process of finding qualified individuals begins with call for nominations put out each spring by the Saskatchewan Honours Advisory Council, which then makes its selected
    8.50
    4 votes
    22

    Order of the Star of Italian Solidarity

    • Founders: Enrico De Nicola
    The Order of the Star of Italy (until 2011 known as the Order of the Star of Italian Solidarity; Stella della solidarietà italiana) was founded as a national order by the first President of the Italian Republic, Enrico De Nicola, in 1947, to recognise civilian and military expatriates or foreigners who made an outstanding contribution to the reconstruction of Italy after World War II. The insignia, modified in 2001, bear the inscription Solidarietà Italiana encircling a depiction of the Good Samaritan. The order is bestowed by decree of the President of the Republic, head of the order, on the recommendation of the Minister of Foreign Affairs. Until February 2011, the three degrees with corresponding ribbons were as follows (with numbers to December 2006): In 2011, the order was reformed as the Order of the Star of Italy by the 11th President, Giorgio Napolitano. The emphasis of the reformed award has shifted from post-war reconstruction to the preservation and promotion of national prestige abroad, promoting friendly relations and co-operation with other countries and ties with Italy. The present classes of the Order from February 2011 are as follows:
    7.20
    5 votes
    23
    Order of Saint Stephen

    Order of Saint Stephen

    • Category: Monarchical Order
    • Founders: Cosimo I de' Medici, Grand Duke of Tuscany
    The Order of Saint Stephen (Official: Sacro Militare Ordine di Santo Stefano Papa e Martire, "Holy Military Order of St. Stephen Pope and Martyr") is a Tuscan dynastic-military order founded in 1561. The order was created by Cosimo I de' Medici, first Grand Duke of Tuscany. The last member of the Medici dynasty to be a leader of the order was Gian Gastone de Medici in 1737. The order was permanently abolished in 1859 by the annexation of Tuscany to the Kingdom of Sardinia. The former Kingdom of Italy and the current Italian Republic also did not recognize the order as a legal entity but tolerates it as a private body. The order was founded by Cosimo I de' Medici, first Grand Duke of Tuscany, with the approbation of Pope Pius IV on 1 October 1561. The rule chosen was that of the Benedictine Order. The first grand master was Cosimo himself and he was followed in that role by his successors as grand duke. The dedication to the martyred Pope Stephen I, whose feast day is 2 August, derives from the date of Cosimo's victories at the Battle of Montemurlo on 1 August 1537 and the Battle of Marciano(Scannagallo) on 2 August 1554. The objective of the order was to fight the Ottoman Turks and
    7.00
    5 votes
    24
    Order of the Golden Fleece

    Order of the Golden Fleece

    • Category: Monarchical Order
    • Founders: Philip III, Duke of Burgundy
    The Order of the Golden Fleece (Dutch: Orde van het Gulden Vlies; French: Ordre de la Toison d'Or; German: Orden vom Goldenen Vlies; Italian: Ordine del Toson d'Oro; Spanish: Orden del Toisón de Oro) is an order of chivalry founded in Bruges by Philip III, Duke of Burgundy in 1430, to celebrate his marriage to the Portuguese princess Infanta Isabella of Portugal, daughter of King John I of Portugal. It evolved as one of the most prestigious orders in Europe. Today there exist two branches of the Order: the Spanish and the Austrian Fleece; the current sovereigns are respectively Juan Carlos I, King of Spain, and Karl von Habsburg, grandson of Emperor Charles I of Austria. The Order of the Golden Fleece was established January 10, 1430, by Philip the Good, Duke of Burgundy, in celebration of the prosperous and wealthy domains united in his person that ran from Flanders to Switzerland. It is restricted to a limited number of knights, initially 24 but increased to 30 in 1433, and 50 in 1516, plus the sovereign. It received further privileges unusual to any order of knighthood: the sovereign undertook to consult the order before going to war; all disputes between the knights were to be
    9.33
    3 votes
    25

    Royal Family Order of King Edward VII

    The Royal Family Order of King Edward VII was a high honour bestowed as a mark of personal esteem on titled female members of the British Royal Family for personal service to King Edward VII. The order is a personal memento rather than a state decoration. King Edward VII's Royal Family Order description was (working outwards in): A red stripe, almost half the size of the centre stripe, a thin gold stripe, about one-fifth of the red stripe, and a blue stripe, almost double the red stripe. The red gold pattern is mirrored on both sides. The articles on the above people may list other honours and awards that they were given to them. Reference: Royal Orders Hugo Vickers.
    9.33
    3 votes
    26

    Order of Aviz

    The Military Order of Aviz (Portuguese: Ordem Militar de Avis, pronounced: [ɐˈviʃ]), previously to 1910 Royal Military Order of Aviz (Portuguese: Ordem Real Militar de Avis), previously to 1789 Order of Saint Benedict of Aviz (Portuguese: Ordem de São Bento de Aviz), previously Knights of St. Benedict of Aviz or Friars of Santa Maria of Évora, is a Portuguese Order of Chivalry. It gave its name and coat of arms to the Aviz Dynasty that ruled Portugal between 1385 and 1580. The order, as a monastic military order, was founded in emulation of such military orders as the Knights Templar, which existed in Portugal as early as 1128, and received a grant from Teresa of León in the year of the Council of Troyes, which confirmed their early statutes. A native order of this kind sprang up in Portugal about 1146. Afonso, the first King gave to it the town of Évora, captured from the Moors in 1166, and the Knights were first called "Friars of Santa Maria of Évora". Pedro Henriques, an illegitimate son of the King's father, was the first grand master. After the conquest of Aviz a castle erected there became the motherhouse of the order, and they were then called "Knights of St. Benedict of
    8.00
    4 votes
    27
    Order of the Sacred Treasures

    Order of the Sacred Treasures

    • Category: Japanese Order
    The Order of the Sacred Treasure (瑞宝章, Zuihō-shō) is a Japanese Order, established on January 4, 1888 by Emperor Meiji of Japan as the Order of Meiji. It is awarded in eight classes (from 8th to 1st, in ascending order of importance). It is awarded to those who have made distinguished achievements in research fields, business industries, healthcare, social work, state/local government fields or the improvement of life for handicapped/impaired persons. A European counterpart of the order would be the Order of the British Empire. Originally a male-only decoration, the order has been made available to women since 1919; it is awarded for both civil and military merit, though of a lesser degree than that required for the conferment of the Order of the Rising Sun. Unlike its European counterparts, the order may be conferred posthumously. The Order can be awarded in any of these eight classes. Conventionally, a diploma is prepared to accompany the insignia of the order, and in some rare instances, the personal signature of the emperor will have been added. As an illustration of the wording of the text, a translation of a representative 1929 diploma says: The insignia of the order
    6.80
    5 votes
    28

    Order of the Star of Karageorge

    Karadjordje's Star (Карађорђева звезда) King Peter I instituted the Order on 1 January 1904, to commemorate his own accession to the Serbian Throne and the centenary of the First Serbian Uprising against the Ottoman Turks, led by the Founder of the Dynasty, Đorđe Petrović, called Black George (or Kara-George) (in Serbian Karađorđe) owing to his dark complexion. The National Assembly voted Karađorđe the Hereditary Supreme Leader of the Serbs, and the Sultan eventually recognized him as vassal Prince status. The new Order was aimed to replace two previous awards of the House of Obrenović that had distinctly Family Order characteristics: The Order of the Cross of Takovo and the Royal Order of Miloš the Great. Both, in fact, commemorated the Obrenović Dynasty Founder, Prince Miloš, leader of the Second Serbian Uprising (1815). The Order of the Star of Karageorge was defined as senior state award, with some elements of the House Order (since Princes of the Blood were by birth GCs, invested at baptism). It was organized into four classes, and was awarded to Serbian citizens for exceptional merit rendered to the King, State and Nation, for civilian or military service, and in 1906
    9.00
    3 votes
    29

    Royal Family Order of King George VI

    The Royal Family Order of King George VI was a high honour bestowed as a mark of personal esteem on titled female members of the British Royal Family for personal service to King George VI. Queen Elizabeth II and Princess Alexandra are the only surviving members of the Order. King George VI's Royal Family Order was awarded in classes and was of pink colour. The insignia is worn on bow of pink watered silk.
    9.00
    3 votes
    30
    The Royal Norwegian Order of Merit

    The Royal Norwegian Order of Merit

    The Royal Norwegian Order of Merit (Norwegian, Den Kongelige Norske Fortjensteorden) was established by King Olav V of Norway in 1985. It is the newest Nordic order and is awarded to foreigners, Norwegian citizens living abroad, Ministry of Foreign Affairs diplomats, foreign civil servants in Norway, and Norway's honorary consuls for "outstanding service in the interests of Norway". Its counterpart, the Royal Norwegian Order of St. Olav, is generally only awarded to Norwegian citizens living in Norway. The reigning monarch (King Harald V) is the Grand Master of the Order. The order has five grades: Grand Cross, Commander (which is further subdivided into Commander with Star and Commander), and Knight (which is further subdivided into Knight 1st Class and Knight). The Order is characterized by a ribbon of deep blue moiré. The Grand Cross is worn on a broad sash that hangs over the right shoulder. The Commander's Cross is worn around the neck on ribbon of the Order. The Knight's Cross is worn over the left breast on a ribbon. Women wear both the Commander's Cross and the Knight's Cross over the left breast on a ribbon of the Order that has been fashioned into a bow. Unlike the Order
    9.00
    3 votes
    31

    Order of Aubrac

    • Category: Military order
    The Order of Aubrac was a hospitaller and military order founded, with its headquarters at Aubrac in the Diocese of Rodez, in the mid-twelfth century. The Augustinian rule was approved for the order by the bishop in 1162. Its original purpose was to safeguard the local hospital for pilgrims on the Way of Saint James to Compostela and on their way to Rome. Though never large, the Knights Hospitaller failed in several attempts to annex it and it remained independent and operational until the French Revolution, when it disappeared. The monastery and hospital (Hôtel-Dieu) that served as the Order's headquarters was called the Dômerie d'Aubrac. It was founded in 1031 by Adalard, Viscount of Flanders, who was beset by brigands while passing through the County of Rouergue on his way to Compostela. Eventually it was attended by a collection of priests, knights, lay brothers, ladies, and lay sisters. Satellite hospitals, called "commanderies", were established at Bozouls, Milhau, Nazac, and Rodez.
    7.75
    4 votes
    32
    Civil Order of Savoy

    Civil Order of Savoy

    • Founders: Charles Albert of Sardinia
    The Civil Order of Savoy was founded as an order of knighthood in 1831 by the King of Sardinia, Charles Albert, Duke of Savoy. The intention was to reward those virtues not belonging to the existing Military Order of Savoy, founded by Vittorio Emanuele I in 1815. The order has one degree, that of Knight (Cavalieri dell'Ordine civile di Savoia), and is limited to 70 members. Admission is in the personal gift of the head of the House of Savoy. The insignia bears the inscription Al Merito Civile—1831; the letters C.A. on the reverse substituted for V.E. after the death of Charles Albert in 1849. The civil order was continued on the unification of Italy in 1861, but has been suppressed by law since the foundation of the Republic in 1946. Umberto II did not abdicate his position as fons honorum however, and the now dynastic order remains under the Grand Mastership of the head of the former Royal house. While the continued use of those decorations awarded prior to 1951 is permitted in Italy, they no longer confer any right of precedence in official ceremonies. The military order on the other hand, was revived as the Military Order of Italy and remains a national order today.
    5.83
    6 votes
    33
    Order of Grimaldi

    Order of Grimaldi

    The Order of Grimaldi (usually called Ordre de Grimaldi but officially Ordre des Grimaldi according to the Ordonnance) is an Order (decoration) established in Monaco on 18 November 1954. It is awarded to people who have contributed to the prestige of the Principality with distinction. As the Order rewards personal service to the Sovereign Prince of Monaco, it is awarded on the sole discretion of the Grand-Master, currently Albert II, Prince of Monaco. According to the statutes, and except for Members of the Princely Family and foreigners, one can only receive the Order first with the rank of Knight. To be awarded the following higher ranks, one must keep the lower rank during the following times : Nominations belong to the Grand-Master. The Chancellor proposes promotions. According to the Prince's orders, the Chancellor proposes the projects of nomination and promotion ordonnances. The grantees must be received in the Order before wearing the decorations. The Grand-Master receives the Grand Crosses, Grand Officers and Commanders. The Chancellor receives the Officers and Knights. One exception : the foreigners will be admitted in the Order, but not received. A member of the Order
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    5 votes
    34
    Order of Merit of the Republic of Poland

    Order of Merit of the Republic of Poland

    The Order of Merit of the Republic of Poland (Order Zasługi Rzeczypospolitej Polskiej) is a Polish order awarded to those who have rendered great service to the Polish nation. It is granted to foreigners or Poles resident abroad and as such is a traditional 'diplomatic order'. It was created in 1974. From 1974 to 1991 the Order was awarded in following classes: Since 1992 the Order is awarded in the following classes: The order was established by the act dated April 10, 1974, as the Order of Merit of the People's Republic of Poland (Order Zasługi Polskiej Rzeczypospolitej Ludowej). It was awarded in five classes: Grand Cordon of the Order, Commandery with Star, Commandery, Gold Badge of the Order, and Silver Badge of the Order. It was awarded by the Polish Council of State. After the fall of communism in Poland in 1989, it was decided to retain the order, with necessary changes. Without a formal change of the 1974 act or the name of the order, the insignia were changed to the present ones by a presidential decree of 16 April 1991. The abbreviation "PRL" was changed to "RP," the Eagle was given a crown in accordance with Poland's new coat of arms, the date "1974" was removed from
    6.60
    5 votes
    35
    Royal Family Order of Queen Elizabeth II

    Royal Family Order of Queen Elizabeth II

    The Royal Family Order of Queen Elizabeth II is a high honour bestowed as a mark of personal esteem on female members of the British Royal Family for personal service to Queen Elizabeth II. It is also (rarely) awarded to women outside the Royal Family who have served the Queen in a personal capacity: for example, the Dowager Duchess of Grafton is a member of the Order, as was her predecessor as Mistress of the Robes (the Duchess of Devonshire). It is not automatically awarded and there is no public announcement of the honour. Usually the only way it can be known if it has been awarded is by viewing photos or film from State Visit banquets or other formal similar evening occasions requiring the wearing of honours and awards. The Royal Family Order depicts a young Queen Elizabeth II in evening dress wearing the ribbon and star of the Order of the Garter. The miniature, painted on ivory, is bordered by diamonds and surmounted by a Tudor Crown in diamonds and red enamel. The reverse, in silver-gilt, is patterned with rays and depicts the royal cypher and St. Edward's Crown in gold and enamel. The watered silk ribbon is chartreuse yellow and formed into a bow. It is worn pinned to the
    6.60
    5 votes
    36

    Order of the Aztec Eagle

    The Order of the Aztec Eagle (Spanish: Orden Mexicana del Águila Azteca) is a Mexican order and is the highest decoration awarded to foreigners in the country. It was created by decree on December 29, 1933 by President Abelardo L. Rodríguez as a reward to the services given to Mexico or humankind by foreigners. It corresponds to similar distinctions given to Mexican citizens such as the Condecoración Miguel Hidalgo or the Belisario Domínguez Medal of Honor. It is given by the office of the foreign minister on the instructions of a Council established for this purpose headed by the President. There is some design similarity of the order with the coat of arms of Mexico, particularly the golden eagle holding a snake, which is associated with the Aztec civilization. Since the reform of March 2011, the classes are : All grades except the collar may be awarded, under the Council's discretion, to distinguished foreigners. Prior to the 2011 reform, the classes were, in descending order:
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    4 votes
    37

    Order of the Brilliant Star of Zanzibar

    The Order of the Brilliant Star of Zanzibar was a decoration awarded by the Sultan of Zanzibar. It was in use from its inception on 22 December 1875 to the overthrow of the Sultanate on 12 January 1964. The decoration had two grades, the first of which was usually awarded to foreign heads of state and the second which was further subdivided into five hierarchical classes. The second grade was the most awarded and was used to reward those who had provided assistance to the Sultan. The Brilliant Star was instituted on 22 December 1875 by Sultan Barghash bin Said. It consisted of two grades, the first almost exclusively awarded to sovereigns and heads of state and the second subdivided into five classes. These categories were (in decreasing order of precedence): Grand Cross, Grand Officer, Commander, Officer and Member. The order became obsolete with the Zanzibar Revolution of 12 January 1964 which saw Sultan Jamshid bin Abdullah overthrown and the end of the Sultanate in Zanzibar. Both classes awarded neck medals in medallion form to be worn around the neck on formal occasions and breast badges, smaller awards which could be worn on the left breast like conventional medals. The neck
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    4 votes
    38
    Order of the White Falcon

    Order of the White Falcon

    Order of the White Falcon is a grand-ducal order of Weimar, founded by Duke Ernest Augustus in 1732, and renewed in 1815 by Charles Augustus. In the early 20th century it had four classes and a silver cross, added in 1878. The decoration, a green star of eight points, with red stars between the arms, bears a white falcon, and the motto, Vigilando Ascendimus (Through vigilance we ascend), on a blue ground. Among awarders by Order of the White Falcon, 1st class and 2nd class - Prince Vasily Andreyevich Dolgorukov (1804–1868), General of the Cavalry and Minister of War (1852–1856). Count of Erivan Ivan Fyodorovich Paskevich (1782-1856), Field marshal, attained Order of the White Falcon, 1st class (Saxen-Weimar, 1841). Count Lev Severinovich Pototskiy (1789-1860), Russian diplomat, the owner of Livadia Palace in Crimea, was awarded by a Christian cross of Order of the White Falcon (September, 6, 1856). Prince Mikhail Mikhail Galitzine (1830-1890), General-major, has been awarded by Order of the White Falcon, 2nd class, "with swords" (November, 25, 1860).
    7.50
    4 votes
    39
    Wilhelmsorden

    Wilhelmsorden

    The "Wilhelmsorden" of Hesse-Kassel (or Hesse-Cassel) was instituted by the Elector Friedrich Wilhelm I on 20 August 1851 as a civil and military Order of Merit. It was composed of the three lower grades of the Order of the Golden Lion and a Grand Cross was added. In total the order was awarded more than 450 times in the 16 years of its existence. The motto of the Order was Virtuti et Fidelitate, and the ribbon was Carmine-red with red and white borders. On 1 August 1866, Hesse-Kassel was annexed by Prussia and on 3 October of that same year the Hesse-Kassellian orders were incorporated into the Prussian system of honours. On 27 August 1875 the Order was abolished. Although there were no new awards by the Prussian Kings in the 1866-1875 era, the exiled Elector Friedrich Wilhelm I. awarded the order approximately 8 times until his death in 1875. The Order is not to be confused with the exclusive or
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    4 votes
    40
    Order of Cultural Merit

    Order of Cultural Merit

    The Order of Cultural Merit (French: Ordre du Mérite Culturel) is the fourth highest Order of the Principality of Monaco. The order was established by HSH Rainier III, Prince of Monaco on 31 December 1952 by Sovereign Order 689. It is awarded to recognize those who have made a distinctive contribution to the arts, letters or science through their work or teaching in Monaco. It may also be awarded to recognize individuals in those areas who have extended the intellectual influence of the Principality, even from outside of Monaco. The order is presented in three different grades, Commander, Officer, and Knight. Each grade's insignia share certain characteristics. The badge of the Order consists of a round medallion, framed by a laurel wreath and suspended by the Heraldic Crown of Monaco. The obverse of the medallion contains the monogram of Prince Rainier III, formed by two mirrored "R"s, surrounded by the inscription "Principauté de Monaco 1952". The reverse depicts an arrangement of objects symbolizing the arts and sciences, a lyre, books, compass, etc. On the upper right is the inscription "Arts Lettres Sciences". The medallions are suspended from a ribbon of red with a line of
    8.67
    3 votes
    41
    Order of the Red Eagle

    Order of the Red Eagle

    The Order of the Red Eagle (German: Roter Adlerorden) was an order of chivalry of the Kingdom of Prussia. It was awarded to both military personnel and civilians, to recognize valor in combat, excellence in military leadership, long and faithful service to the kingdom, or other achievements. As with most German (and most other European) orders, the Order of the Red Eagle could only be awarded to commissioned officers or civilians of approximately equivalent status. However, there was a medal of the order, which could be awarded to non-commissioned officers and enlisted men, lower ranking civil servants and other civilians. The predecessor to Order of the Red Eagle was founded on November 17, 1705, by the Margrave Georg Wilhelm of Brandenburg-Bayreuth as the Ordre de la Sincerité. This soon fell into disuse but was revived in 1712 in Brandenburg-Bayreuth and again in 1734 in Brandenburg-Ansbach, where it first received the name "Order of the Brandenburg Red Eagle". The statutes were changed in 1777 and the Order named therein as the "Order of the Red Eagle". The Order was conferred in one class, limited to fifty knights. The Kingdom of Prussia absorbed both Brandenburg-Bayreuth and
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    2 votes
    42

    Order of José Matías Delgado

    The National Order of Doctor José Matías Delgado is an honour awarded in El Salvador. The order is named after José Matías Delgado who was a priest and doctor known as The Father of the Salvadoran Fatherland. He was a leader in the independence movement of El Salvador from Spain. The order is awarded in 6 classes:
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    6 votes
    43
    Knights of the Cross

    Knights of the Cross

    • Category: Military order
    The Knights of the Cross with the Red Star or Military Order of the Crusaders of the Red Star (Czech: Křižovnický řád rytířů s červenou hvězdou; German: Kreuzherren mit dem Roten Stern; Latin: Ordo Militaris Crucigerorum cum Rubea Stella, Canonici Regulares Sanctissimae Crucis a stella rubea, Crucigeri cum rubea stella, Crucigeri stellati, Stelliferi) is a religious order originating from Bohemia, devoted mainly to offering medical care. Throughout its history it was accustomed to the use of arms, a custom which was confirmed in 1292 by an ambassador of Pope Nicholas IV. The grand master is still invested with a sword at his induction into office, and the congregation has been recognized as a military order by Popes Clement X and Innocent XII, as well as by several Holy Roman Emperors. There is some discussion as to the real beginnings of this order. Some authorities, among others the Bollandists, tracing it back to Palestine, where the first members were supposed to have borne arms against the Saracens. On the other hand, however, is the contemporary custom of establishing a religious congregation at the time of the foundation of a hospital, as well as the fact that in no document
    7.25
    4 votes
    44
    Order of Christ

    Order of Christ

    The Supreme Order of Christ (Italian: Ordine Supremo del Cristo) is the highest order of chivalry awarded by the Pope. According to some scholars owes its origin to the same Order of Christ of the Knights Templar, from which came the Order of Christ that was awarded by the Kings of Portugal and the Emperors of Brazil. The Portuguese order had originally both a secular and religious component; by the 18th century, the religious component had died out. The papacy insisted that the right of the Portuguese monarchs to award the honour had been granted by a pope in the Papal Bull Ad ea ex quibus issued in Avignon on 14/15 March 1319. While the Bull in itself does not explicitly grant to the Pope the right to issue the Order, successive popes since Pope John XXII have done so. For many years the Portuguese monarchy disputed the right of the papacy to award the Order, and in one famous case arrested someone for wearing the papal Order. The position of the Crown of Portugal was, that the only legitimate fons honorum was the Crown. As part of the general re-organisation of papal honours in 1905 by Pope Pius X, the papal Order of Christ was made the most senior papal honour. It was
    7.25
    4 votes
    45
    Order of Ouissan Alaouite

    Order of Ouissan Alaouite

    The Order of Ouissam Alaouite or the Royal Order of Al-Alaoui is a military decoration of Morocco which is bestowed by the King of Morocco upon those civilians and military officers who have displayed heroism in combat or have contributed meritorious service to the Moroccan state. The decoration was established on January 11, 1913 and is awarded in five classes: Grand Cross (Grand Croix), Grand Officer (Grand Officier), Commander (Commandeur), Officer (Officier) and Knight (Chevalier). The Order of Ouissam Alaouite is similar to the Legion of Merit, awarded by the United States military. The order of Ouissam Alaouite was created during the colonial period. The French authorities in Morocco considered it necessary to have the power to bestow an official honour or decoration in response to loyal service; and they wanted to avoid over-burdening the bureaucracy of the order of the Légion d'Honneur in Paris. The ribbon of the order during this period was a shade of orange or pumpkin-coloured. During the Second World War, the Order of Ouissam Alaouite was bestowed frequently on United States military personnel who had participated in the planning and execution of Operation Torch, the
    7.25
    4 votes
    46
    Order of the Crown of Italy

    Order of the Crown of Italy

    • Founders: Victor Emmanuel II of Italy
    The Order of the Crown of Italy was founded as a national order in 1868 by King Vittorio Emanuele II, to commemorate the unification of Italy in 1861. It was awarded in five degrees for civilian and military merit. Compared with the older Order of Saints Maurice and Lazarus (1572), the Order of the Crown of Italy was awarded more liberally and could be conferred on non-Catholics as well; eventually, it became a requirement for a person to have already received the Order of the Crown of Italy in at least the same degree before receiving the Order of Saints Maurice and Lazarus. The order has been suppressed by law since the foundation of the Republic in 1946. However, Umberto II did not abdicate his position as fons honorum and it remained under his Grand Mastership as a dynastic order. While the continued use of those decorations conferred prior to 1951 is permitted in Italy, the crowns on the ribbons issued before 1946 must be substituted for as many five pointed stars on military uniforms. Following the demise of the last reigning monarch in 1983, the order, founded by the first, is no longer bestowed. It was replaced by the Order of Merit of Savoy instituted by his heir, the
    7.25
    4 votes
    47
    Order of the Rose

    Order of the Rose

    The Imperial Order of the Rose (Portuguese: Imperial Ordem da Rosa) is a Brazilian order of chivalry, instituted by Emperor Pedro I of Brazil on 17 October 1829 to commemorate his marriage to Amélie of Leuchtenberg. On 22 March 1890, the order was cancelled as national order by the interim government of United States of Brazil. Since the deposition in 1889 of the last Brazilian monarch, Emperor Pedro II, the order continues as a house order being awarded by the Heads of the House of Orleans-Braganza, pretenders to the defunct throne of Brazil. The current Brazilian Imperial Family is split into two branches Petrópolis and Vassouras, and as a consequence the Grand Mastership of the Order is disputed between those two branches. Original appointment to the Order of the Rose signed by Emperor Dom Pedro II, 1887 - Arquivo Público do Estado de São Paulo
    7.25
    4 votes
    48

    Order of Our Lady of Bethlehem

    • Category: Military order
    After the taking of Constantinople by the Turks (1453), Pius II founded the Order of Our Lady of Bethlehem. The purpose of these knights was to defend the Island of Lemnos which Cardinal Louis, Patriarch of Aquileia, had recaptured from Mohammed II. The island was to be their headquarters from which they were to oppose the attacks of the Muslims by way of the Ægean Sea and the Hellespont. The order was composed of brother-knights and priests governed by an elective grand-master. The white costume worn by the members was decorated with a red cross and the rule prescribed for them was very similar to that of the Knights of St. John of Jerusalem. The pope installed this community on 18 January 1459. To supply their needs, the pope turned over to them the property and revenues of the orders of St. Lazarus, Sainte-Marie du Ch teau des Bretons, Bologna, of the Holy Sepulchre, Santo Spirito in Sassia, St. Mary of the Crossed Friars, and St. James of Lucca, all of which were suppressed for this purpose. Pius II alluded in a Bull to this foundation and the bravery of its knights, but the second capture of Lemnos by the Turks rendered the institution useless. Thus the order of Our Lady of
    8.33
    3 votes
    49
    Order of the Crown

    Order of the Crown

    The Order of the Crown (Dutch: Kroonorde) is a house order of the Dutch Royal House of Orange-Nassau. The order came into being as a result of Queen Juliana's reorganization of The House Order of Orange (Huisorde van Oranje) in 1969. The 18 classes of the House order were no longer felt to be appropriate in the ever more egalitarian Dutch society of the '60s. The Order was divided into five subdivisions. As a house order it is not subject to ministerial responsibility or influence, but is awarded at the discretion of the Dutch monarch alone. The Order of the Crown is intended for "foreigners who have rendered special service to the Dutch King or his House". The present queen has instituted a silver medal to commemorate state visits. The Order of the Crown has five grades and three medals. This allows the Dutch monarch to dispense the decorations according to rank especially during state visits. Diana, Princess of Wales received the Grand-cross order of the Order of the Crown, whereas Charles, Prince of Wales had already had been given the Grand-Cross of the Order of Oranje-Nassau. Madame Hayrünnisa Gül, First Lady of Turkey is the most recent recipient of the Order.
    8.33
    3 votes
    50
    Order of the Star of India

    Order of the Star of India

    • Category: Monarchical Order
    • Founders: Queen Victoria
    The Most Exalted Order of the Star of India is an order of chivalry founded by Queen Victoria in 1861. The Order includes members of three classes: No appointments have been made since the 1948 New Year Honours, shortly after the Partition of India in 1947. With the death of the last surviving knight, the Maharaja of Alwar, the order became dormant in 2009. The motto of the order is Heaven's light our guide. The "Star of India", the emblem of the order, also appeared on the flag of the Viceroy of India. The order is the senior order of chivalry associated with the Empire of India; the junior order is The Most Eminent Order of the Indian Empire, and there was also, for women only the Imperial Order of the Crown of India. It is the fifth-most-senior British order of chivalry, following The Most Noble Order of the Garter, The Most Ancient and Most Noble Order of the Thistle, The Most Illustrious Order of St Patrick, and The Most Honourable Order of the Bath. Several years after the Indian Mutiny and the consolidation of Great Britain's power as the governing authority in India, it was decided by the British Crown to create a new order of knighthood to honour Indian Princes and Chiefs,
    8.33
    3 votes
    51
    Military Order of Max Joseph

    Military Order of Max Joseph

    The Military Order of Max Joseph (German: Militär-Max-Joseph-Orden) was the highest purely military order of the Kingdom of Bavaria. It was founded on 1 January 1806 by Maximilian I Joseph of Bavaria, the first king of Bavaria. The order came in three classes: Individuals who received the order and were not already members of the nobility were ennobled and would add the title of "Ritter von" to their family name. A Bavarian title of nobility obtained through the Military Order of Max Joseph was valid for the recipient's life only. The order became obsolete in 1918 with the collapse of the Bavarian monarchy on Germany's defeat in World War I. However, the orders chancery continued to process outstanding award recommendations to at least 1922. The badge of the order was a white-enameled gold Maltese cross with balls at each cross point. The center medallion, in blue enamel and edged in gold, featured the monogram of Max Joseph on the obverse (a cursive "MJK") and the Latin motto of the order, "Virtuti pro patria" ("Bravery for the fatherland") on the reverse, both in gold. Above the cross was a gold crown. The badge of the Knight's Cross was much smaller than that of many other
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    2 votes
    52

    Order of Dobrzyń

    • Category: Military order
    The Order of Dobrzyń (Polish: Zakon Dobrzyński) or Order of Dobrin (German: Orden von Dobrin), also known as the Brothers of Dobrzyń (Polish: Bracia Dobrzyńscy), was a military order created in the borderland of Masovia and Prussia (today's Dobrzyń Land, Poland) during the 13th century Prussian Crusade to 'defend against Baltic Prussian raids'. In Latin the knights were known as the Fratres Milites Christi (de Prussia, de Dobrin, de Dobrzyń, de Mazovia), and they were nicknamed the Prussian Cavaliers of Jesus Christ. The Order was created by Christian of Oliva, the first Bishop of Prussia (1216–1228), to protect Masovia and Kuyavia against raids from the pagan Prussians who defied Duke Konrad I of Masovia's attempts to subjugate them. The creation of the Order was confirmed by Pope Gregory IX (1227–1241) in 1228. Duke Konrad granted the Knights the town of Dobrzyń (Dobrin) and the surrounding Dobrzyń Land (German: Dobriner Land), territory located south of and adjacent to Prussia. The Order of Dobrzyń was the only military order created in the territory of Poland. At first the Order was composed of 15 German knights from Lower Saxony and Mecklenburg led by Master Brunon. The Order
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    2 votes
    53
    Order of the Black Eagle

    Order of the Black Eagle

    • Founders: Frederick I of Prussia
    The Order of the Black Eagle (German: Hoher Orden vom Schwarzen Adler) was the highest order of chivalry in the Kingdom of Prussia. The order was founded on 17 January 1701 by Elector Friedrich III of Brandenburg (who became Friedrich I, King in Prussia, the following day). In his Dutch exile after WWI, deposed Emperor Wilhelm II continued to award the order to his family. He made his second wife, Princess Hermine Reuss of Greiz, a Lady in the Order of the Black Eagle. The statutes of the order were published on 18 January 1701, and revised in 1847. Membership in the Order of the Black Eagle was limited to a small number of knights, and was divided into two classes: members of reigning houses (further divided into members of the House of Hohenzollern and members of other houses, both German and foreign) and capitular knights. Before 1847, membership was limited to nobles, but after that date, capitular knights who were not nobles were raised to the nobility (Adelstand). Capitular knights were generally high-ranking government officials or military officers. The Order of the Black Eagle had only one class, but could also be awarded at the king's prerogative "with the Chain" ("mit
    9.50
    2 votes
    54
    Order of the Elephant

    Order of the Elephant

    • Founders: Christian V of Denmark
    The Order of the Elephant (Danish: Elefantordenen) is the highest order of Denmark. It has origins in the 15th century, but has officially existed since 1693, and since the establishment of constitutional monarchy in 1849, is now almost exclusively bestowed on royalty and heads of state. A Danish religious confraternity called the Fellowship of the Mother of God, limited to about fifty members of the Danish aristocracy, was founded during the reign of Christian I during the 15th century. The badge of the confraternity showed the Virgin Mary holding her Son within a crescent moon and surrounded with the rays of the sun, and was hung from a collar of links in the form of elephants much like the present collar of the Order. After the Reformation in 1536 the confraternity died out, but a badge in the form of an elephant with his profile on its right side was still awarded by Frederick II. This latter badge may have been inspired by the badge of office of the chaplain of the confraternity which is known to have been in the form of an elephant. The order was instituted in its current form on 1 December 1693 by King Christian V as having only one class consisting of only 30 noble knights
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    2 votes
    55
    Order of the Most Holy Annunciation

    Order of the Most Holy Annunciation

    • Category: Dynastic order of knighthood
    • Founders: Amadeus VI, Count of Savoy
    The Supreme Order of the Most Holy Annunciation (Ordine Supremo della Santissima Annunziata) is an order of chivalry, or knighthood, originating in mediæval Italy. It eventually was the pinnacle of the honours system in the Kingdom of Italy, which ceased to be a national order when the kingdom became a republic in 1946. Today, the order continues as a dynastic order under the jurisdiction of the Head of the House of Savoy, Victor Emmanuel, Prince of Naples, who is the order's hereditary Sovereign and Grand Master. The origins of the Supreme Order of the Most Holy Annunciation begins in 1362, when Amadeus VI, Count of Savoy (1343-1383) instituted the order's earliest designation, under the title of Order of the Collar. Even at this time, the order was dedicated to the Blessed Virgin Mary, who is celebrated as "Our Lady of the Annunciation." Thus, the order is a dynastic religious (or Catholic) order of chivalry. Under its first formulation, the order had fifteen knights. The number was symbolic of the number of daily masses celebrated with the order. In 1409, Amadeus VIII, Duke of Savoy, gave the order its first known statutes, and in 1434, he extended the order to five more
    9.50
    2 votes
    56
    Order of Isabella the Catholic

    Order of Isabella the Catholic

    The Order of Isabella the Catholic (Spanish: Orden de Isabel la Católica) is a Spanish civil order granted in recognition of services that benefit the country. The Order is not exclusive to Spaniards, and many foreigners have been awarded it. The Order was created on 14 March 1815 by King Ferdinand VII of Spain in honor of Queen Isabella I of Castile with the name of "Royal and American Order of Isabella the Catholic" with the intent of "rewarding the firm allegiance to Spain and the merits of Spanish citizens and foreigners in good standing with the Nation and especially in those exceptional services provided in pursuit of territories in America and overseas." The Order was reorganized by royal decree on July 26, 1847, as the modern "Royal Order of Isabella the Catholic" with a broader focus than the Americas. The King of Spain (currently Juan Carlos I) is Grand Master of the Order. The Chancellor of the Order is the Minister of Foreign Affairs. All deeds granting decorations of the Order must bear the signatures of both. Beneath these two officials of the Order, there are currently several grades: The original statues of the order of 24 March 1815 established the order in three
    7.00
    4 votes
    57
    Order of the Crown

    Order of the Crown

    The Order of the Crown (French: Ordre de la Couronne) is an order established in Monaco on 20 July 1960. This decoration is awarded to people, who have done something exceptional or by their exceptional conduct. It is awarded to people with high merit by the Grand-Master, currently Albert II, Prince of Monaco. According to the statutes, and except for Members of the Princely Family and foreigners, one can only receive the Order first with the rank of Knight. To be awarded the following higher ranks, one must hold the lower rank for a set number of years. To be promoted to Officer, one must serve four years as a knight, promotion from Officer to Commander is three years, Commander to Grand Officer is four years, and finally promotion from Grand Officer to Grand Cross requires a period of five years. Nominations to the order belong to the Grand-Master. The Chancellor proposes promotions. According to the Prince's orders, the Chancellor proposes the projects of nomination and promotion ordonnances. The grantees must be received in the Order before wearing the decorations. The Grand-Master receives the Grand Crosses, Grand Officers and Commanders. The Chancellor receives the Officers
    7.00
    4 votes
    58
    Order of the Royal House of Chakri

    Order of the Royal House of Chakri

    The Most Illustrious Order of the Royal House of Chakri (มหาจักรีบรมราชวงศ์) was established in 1882 by King Rama V of The Kingdom of Siam (now Thailand) to commemorate the Bangkok Centennial. The Order is awarded to members of the House of Chakri (the Thai Royal Family), foreign Heads of State and members of other royal houses. Members of the order are entitled to use the postnominals ม.จ.ก. The decoration consists of a single class (Knight). The insignia is:
    7.00
    4 votes
    59
    Military William Order

    Military William Order

    The Military William Order, or often named Military Order of William (Dutch: Militaire Willems-Orde, abbreviation: MWO), is the oldest and highest honour of the Kingdom of the Netherlands. The Order's motto is Voor Moed, Beleid en Trouw (For Bravery, Leadership and Loyalty). The chivalric order was established on 30 April 1815 by King William I and was presented for feats of excellent bravery on the battlefield and as a meritorious decoration to senior military officers. Comparable with the French Légion d’Honneur but far less awarded, the Military William Order is a chivalry order of merit open to everyone regardless of rank and nobility, and not only to Dutch military but also foreigners. To date the Order is extremely rarely awarded and only for excellent bravery in battle. In the spring of 1940 it was decided that civilians would receive the Military Order of William for heroic acts in the resistance. The chancellor of the order and the government seem to have been unaware that the first civilian was awarded this order in 1815. After the liberation of the Netherlands and the Dutch East Indies, several men and one woman from the resistance were awarded the Military Order of
    6.00
    5 votes
    60
    Order of Francisco de Miranda

    Order of Francisco de Miranda

    The Order of Francisco de Miranda (Orden Francisco de Miranda) is conferred by the Republic of Venezuela in memory of Francisco de Miranda (1754–1816). This national honor and decoration was created to recognize Venezuelan citizens and foreigners who have contributed to the sciences, to the progress of the country, to the humanities or who have exemplified outstanding merits. There are several variations in this Order. This Order was originally a medal, established in 1934; however, it was established as an Order on July 28, 1939. This honor, conferred by the President of Venezuela, was established in the 1930s. Subsequent legislation modifying the Order, the former Law on the Condecoration of the Francisco de Miranda Order was enacted in July 1943. More recently, the law was revised further in 2006, establishing the different levels or rankings within the Order and also identifying potential categories of recipients. The gold-colored neck order badge features an oblong maroon enamel center showing the left-facing profile of Francisco de Miranda. The Venezuelan patriot's name is emblazoned across the upper quadrants of a band which encompasses this central image. Eight sunburst
    6.00
    5 votes
    61
    Knights of Saint Thomas

    Knights of Saint Thomas

    • Category: Military order
    The Hospitallers of St Thomas of Canterbury at Acre, usually called the Knights of St Thomas was a Christian Military order of the Catholic Church. Membership was restricted to Englishmen. The emblem of the order was a red cross with a white scallop in the centre and the Knights wore a white habit. It was established in 1191, at Acre, after the capture of that city by Richard I of England and Philip II of France. After the capture of the city, William, Chaplain to the Dean of St. Pauls Cathedral at London, formed a small religious order, its members taking vows of poverty, chastity and obedience. The purpose of the Order was tending to the sick and wounded, and burying the Christian knights who fell in battle in the Holy Land. To that, William, as Prior of the Order, added the purpose of raising funds to ransom captives from the Muslim armies of Saladin. The success of the Order enabled it to establish a church and hospital which was dedicated to St Thomas Becket, Archbishop of Canterbury. Becket was martyred in 1170 and canonised in 1173. It was militarised by Peter of Roche, the Bishop of Winchester, during the Fifth Crusade 1217–1221. According to Pope Gregory IX this was done
    8.00
    3 votes
    62
    Order of Christ

    Order of Christ

    • Category: Military order
    • Founders: Knights Templar
    The Military Order of Christ (Ordem Militar de Cristo) previously the Royal Order of the Knights of Our Lord Jesus Christ (Real Ordem dos Cavaleiros de Nosso Senhor Jesus Cristo) was the heritage of the Knights Templar in Portugal, after the suppression of the Templars in 1312. It was founded in 1319. Under heavy influence from Philip IV of France, Pope Clement V had the order annihilated throughout France and most of Europe on charges of heresy, but King Denis of Portugal,who found that the Order's assets should for their nature stay in any given Order instead of being taken by the King, re-instituted the Templars of Tomar as the Order of Christ, largely for their aid during the Reconquista and in the reconstruction of Portugal after the wars. King Denis negotiated with Pope Clement's successor John XXII for the new order's recognition and right to inherit the Templar assets and property. The order's origins lie in the Knights Templar, founded circa 1118. The knights saw their persecution by the King of France and eventual disbandment by the Pope in 1312. With this, the King Dinis I of Portugal created the Order of Christ in 1317 for the knights that were able to survive their
    8.00
    3 votes
    63

    Order of Montjoie

    • Category: Military order
    The Order of Mountjoy (French: Ordre de Montjoie, Spanish: Orden de Monte Gaudio) was a military order during the crusades. The period of the Crusades witnessed the rise of religious orders and Christian military orders. The order of Montjoie is mentioned in the thirteenth century as having been founded for the purpose of protecting Christian pilgrims in Iberian Peninsula. Its existence was brief, having been established c.1180 and united with the Order of Calatrava in 1221. The order was founded by count Rodrigo Álvarez in the Holy Land. Rodrigo was from the order of Santiago, and had already established the order in Castile and Aragon before establishing it in the kingdom of Jerusalem in the tower of Ascalon. The headquarters of the order was situated on Montjoie, the hill where the original crusaders had first seen Jerusalem, hence its name ("mountain of joy", mons gaudii in Latin, Mont de joie in French, contracted in Montjoie). The rule of the order was adapted from the Cistercian rule, and was entirely a Spanish order. The emblem of the order was a red and white cross. A number of knights from the order fought at the Battle of Hattin in 1187, but none of them survived.
    8.00
    3 votes
    64
    Order of Saint-Charles

    Order of Saint-Charles

    The Order of Saint-Charles (French: Ordre de Saint-Charles) is an order established in Monaco on 15 March 1858. This order rewards service to the State or Prince. In particulars cases, it may be granted to foreigners. It is awarded by the current Grand-Master, Prince Albert II. Except for Members of the Princely Family and foreigners, one can only receive the Order first with the rank of Knight. To be awarded the following higher ranks, one must keep the lower rank during the following times : Nominations belong to the Grand-Master. The Chancellor proposes promotions. According to the Prince's orders, the Chancellor proposes the projects of nomination and promotion ordonnances. The grantees must be received in the Order before wearing the decorations. The Grand-Master receives the Grand Crosses, Grand Officers and Commanders. The Chancellor receives the Officers and Knights. One exception : the foreigners will be admitted in the Order, but not received. The Knight Grand Cross wears the badge of the order on a sash and the star of the order on the left of the breast. There is a golden necklet that is attched to the Order. It has small empty egg-shaped sections that form the necklet.
    8.00
    3 votes
    65
    Order of Saints George and Constantine

    Order of Saints George and Constantine

    The Royal Family Order of Saints George and Constantine (Greek: Βασιλικό Οικογενειακό Τάγμα των Αγίων Γεωργίου και Κωνσταντίνου) was an order of the Greek royal family. For the duration of its existence, it was the second highest decoration awarded by the modern Greek state and the Greek crown, after the Order of the Redeemer. It was instituted in January 1936 by King George II in the memory of his grandfather (King George I) and his father (King Constantine I). The order was awarded only to men, while the corresponding Order of Saints Olga and Sophia was reserved for women. The order's design was influenced by the royal family's Danish origin, evoking the appearance of the Order of the Dannebrog. The order was discontinued in 1975 by the Greek state after the abolition of monarchy and today is awarded only by the Greek Royal Family. The Order has six classes: Media related to Order of Saints George and Constantine at Wikimedia Commons
    8.00
    3 votes
    66

    Order of the Iron Helmet

    On 18 March 1814 Elector Wilhelm I of Hesse-Kassel (or Hesse-Cassel) founded the Order of the Iron Helmet (German: Orden vom Eisernen Helm). Maximilian Gritzner describes the model and the statutes of the order as "influenced by the example of the Iron Cross".
    6.75
    4 votes
    67
    Order of the Direkgunabhorn

    Order of the Direkgunabhorn

    The Most Admirable Order of the Direkgunabhorn (Thai: เครื่องราชอิสริยาภรณ์อันเป็นที่สรรเสริญยิ่งดิเรกคุณาภรณ์) was established by King Rama IX on 22 July 1991 (B.E. 2534) to be bestowed upon those who have rendered devotional services to the Kingdom of Thailand. The Order consists of 7 classes. Originally, the ribbon for each class was the same, with no device to distinguish the different level. On 31 January 2538 B.E. (1995 A.D.) the regulations were amended to include a device on the ribbon distinguishing the class. [[Image:|right|50px]] Membership of the Order can be gained via either "Devotional Service to the Kingdom", or by donation. Devotional service to the Kingdom is deemed to be met via the following criteria: The first Decoration to be conferred is the Silver Medal or Companion, in case of extraordinary service. A deemed person may request the Silver Medal of the Direkgunabhorn be issued. Decorations of higher class can be attained through further years of excellent service, until the Knight Grand Cross class is reached. Deemed person's include: Donations for public use of cash, property or goods can also earn membership of the Order. The class obtained is relative to
    9.00
    2 votes
    68

    Ordre du Mérite Civil

    The Ordre du Mérite civil (Order of Civil Merit) of France was created on 14 October 1957 to reward individuals who have rendered services reported to the state as part of the Ministry of Interior, or to departments, municipalities and public institutions. The order is managed by the Interior minister, assisted by a Council of the Order. The Order has three classes: The Order was deprecated by decree on 3 December 1963, and superseded by the Ordre national du Mérite. Extant members may continue to display their decorations.
    9.00
    2 votes
    69

    The Wallenberg Endowment

    The Wallenberg Medal of the University of Michigan is awarded to outstanding humanitarians whose actions on behalf of the defenseless and oppressed reflect the heroic commitment and sacrifice of Raoul Wallenberg, the Swedish diplomat who rescued tens of thousands of Jews in Budapest during the closing months of World War II. Encouraged by his grandfather, Gustaf Wallenberg, a diplomat and member of a prominent Swedish family of bankers, industrialists and politicians, Raoul Wallenberg came to Ann Arbor in 1931 to study architecture at the University of Michigan. Here, his grandfather believed, he could escape the isolation of the elite position of his family and would have the chance to experience the broader world. Wallenberg wore sneakers and rode a bicycle around campus, living in a boarding house rather than the more exclusive society of the fraternities. His many friends admired his modesty, sense of humor, and insightful intelligence. As an architecture student, he was recognized for his aptitude for finding practical solutions to complex problems. In 1933 he worked in Chicago at the Swedish pavilion in Century of Progress. He spent summers hitchhiking across the US and
    9.00
    2 votes
    70

    Order of Montesa

    • Category: Military order
    The Order of Montesa (Arabic: Orden de Montesa‎, Catalan: Ordre de Montesa, Spanish: Orden de Montesa) is a Christian military order, territorially limited to the old Kingdom of Aragon. The Templars had been received with enthusiasm in Aragon from their foundation in 1128. King Alfonso I of Aragon, having no direct heir, bequeathed his dominions to be divided among the Templars, the Knights Hospitaller, and the Order of the Holy Sepulchre, but this bequest was annulled by his subjects in 1131. The Templars had to be contented with certain castles, the chief of which was Monzón. Although the Aragonese branch of the order was pronounced innocent at the famous trial of the Templars, Pope Clement V's Bull of suppression was applied to them in spite of the protests of King James II of Aragon in 1312. King James II persuaded Pope John XXII to permit him to regroup the Templar properties in Aragon and Valencia, and to create a new military order not essentially differing from that of the Templars, which should be charged with the defence of the frontier against the Moors and the pirates. The new order was dedicated to Our Lady, and based at Montesa. Pope John XXII approved it on 10 June
    7.67
    3 votes
    71

    Order of the Falcon

    The Order of the Falcon (Icelandic: Hin íslenska fálkaorða) is a national Order of Iceland, established on July 3, 1921 by King Christian X of Denmark and Iceland. During a royal visit to Iceland, King Christian X and Queen Alexandrine of Denmark issued the royal decree founding the Icelandic Order of the Falcon. New statutes were incorporated for the Order on July 11, 1944, when Iceland became independent. It may be awarded to both Icelanders and citizens of other countries for achievements in Iceland or internationally. The President of Iceland is the designated Grand Master of the Order. A five-member council makes recommendations on awards to the Grand Master, who then grants the award. However, the Grand Master may award the Order without recommendations from the Order Council. The Grand Master and the Chairman of the Order Council then sign the Letters Patent, which are given to those who receive the awards. The Order has five classes: The collar is gilded metal, consists of links bearing the Icelandic coat-of-arms and blue-enamelled discs bearing the white falcon. The badge consists of a gilt cross, enamelled in white, with a blue-enamelled central disc bearing the white
    7.67
    3 votes
    72
    Sacred Military Constantinian Order of Saint George

    Sacred Military Constantinian Order of Saint George

    • Category: Military order
    The Sacred Military Constantinian Order of Saint George is a Roman Catholic order of chivalry. It was fictively established by Constantine the Great, though, in reality, it was founded some time between 1520 and 1545 by two brothers belonging to the Angeli Comneni family. Members of the Angeli Comneni family remained grand masters throughout the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries. In 1699, Francesco Farnese, Duke of Parma was recognised as grand master. In 1731, his son and successor, Antonio Farnese, Duke of Parma, died without male heirs. He was succeeded by the first Bourbon grand master, Charles, Duke of Parma (later King Charles III of Spain). Since that time, members of the House of Bourbon have been grand masters of the order. Owing to various family disputes, the grand magistry is today claimed by three rivals, all princely members of the House of Bourbon: There are approximately 2,800 of the Franco-Neapolitan branch and 1,800 members of the Hispano-Neapolitan branch. The motto of the Order is In Hoc Signo Vinces. The legendary origins of the Sacred Military Constantinian Order of Saint George trace its foundation to an apocryphal order founded by Constantine the Great.
    7.67
    3 votes
    73
    Military Order of Maria Theresa

    Military Order of Maria Theresa

    The Military Order of Maria Theresa (Militär-Maria-Theresien-Orden in German, Katonai Mária Terézia-rend in Hungarian, Vojenský řád Marie Terezie in Czech, Vojaški red Marije Terezije in Slovenian, Croatian: Vojni Red Marije Terezije) was an Order (decoration) of the Austro-Hungarian Empire founded on June 18, 1757, the day of the Battle of Kolin, by the Empress Maria Theresa to reward especially meritorious and valorous acts by commissioned officers, including and especially the courageous act of defeating an enemy, and thus, "serving" their monarch. It was specifically given for "successful military acts of essential impact to a campaign that were undertaken on [the officer's] own initiative, and might have been omitted by an honorable officer without reproach." This gave rise to a popular myth that it was awarded for (successfully) acting against an explicit order. It is considered to be the highest honor for a soldier in the Austrian armed services. Originally, the order had two classes: the Knight's Cross and the Grand Cross. On October 15, 1765, Emperor Joseph II added a Commander's Cross and a breast star to be worn by holders of the Grand Cross. A prospective awardee was
    10.00
    1 votes
    74
    Order of Icarus

    Order of Icarus

    The Order of Icarus (C.O.I.) is the highest aviation award next to the Trans-Canada (McKee) Trophy that is awarded to Canadian aviators who have made a lasting contribution to manned flight. The order ceased existence in 1981. The Order was developed as part of the 1967 centennial year for Canada, as aviation's role in the development of the country came into scrutiny. The honours then awarded for aviation proved to be inadequate, as no other award other than the McKee Trophy existed at the time. Several noteworthy aviators decided that this void needed to be filled. And as a result, the Order of Icarus was founded which honoured those persons still living at the time whose airborne skills had resulted in outstanding benefits to manned flight in Canada. After a lengthy search through various mythologies, the early members settled on the Greek story of Icarus. According to myth, Icarus' father Daedalus, under an unjust sentence of death by King Minos of Crete, created wings of feather and wax with which he and his son could fly to freedom. When an exhilarated Icarus flew too high, the heat of the sun destroyed his wings, melting the wax that held the feathers together. Icarus fell
    10.00
    1 votes
    75
    Order of Nova Scotia

    Order of Nova Scotia

    The Order of Nova Scotia is a civilian honour for merit in the Canadian province of Nova Scotia. Instituted on 2 August 2001, when Lieutenant Governor Myra Freeman granted Royal Assent to the Order of Nova Scotia Act, the order is administered by the Governor-in-Council and is intended to honour current or former Nova Scotia residents for conspicuous achievements in any field, being thus described as the highest honour amongst all others conferred by the Nova Scotia Crown. The Order of Nova Scotia is intended to honour any current or former long time resident of Nova Scotia who has demonstrated a high level of individual excellence and achievement in any field, having "distinguished themselves in many fields of endeavour and hav[ing] brought honour and prestige to themselves and to Nova Scotia." There are no limits on how many can belong to the order, though inductions are limited to five per year; Canadian citizenship is a requirement, and those who are elected or appointed members of a governmental body are ineligible as long as they hold office. The process of finding qualified individuals begins with submissions from the public to the Order of Nova Scotia Advisory Council,
    10.00
    1 votes
    76
    Sitara-i-Imtiaz

    Sitara-i-Imtiaz

    The Sitara-i-Imtiaz (Urdu: ستاره ا متيا ز, also spelled as Sitara-e-Imtiaz (English: Star of Excellence), is the third highest honour and civilian award in the State of Pakistan. It recognizes individuals who have made an "especially meritorious contribution to the security or national interests of Pakistan, world peace, cultural or other significant public endeavors". The award is not limited to the citizens of Pakistan, and it can also be awarded to foreign citizens based on their achievements and services done to the State of Pakistan. While, it is a civilian award, it can also be awarded to military officers of the Pakistan Defence Forces worn on their uniform for their recognition to their services to the country. Like others, it is highly restricted and prestigious award only given to those who have caused/done great services to the country. It is a one of the most distinguished civil decoration to the civilians who have done outstanding contribution to their respected fields such as literature, arts, sports, medicine, or science, which prompted the recognition of the country in international level. It is given to a person who has accomplished duty beyond what is assigned to
    10.00
    1 votes
    77
    Order of Leopold II

    Order of Leopold II

    The Order of Leopold II is an order of Belgium and is named in honor of King Léopold II. The decoration was established on 24 August 1900 by Leopold II as king of the Congo Free State and was in 1908, upon Congo being handed over to Belgium, incorporated into the Belgian awards system. The order is awarded for meritorious service to the Sovereign of Belgium, and as a token of his personal goodwill. It can be awarded to both Belgians and foreigners. The order has become a long service order for people in the civil service and is awarded alternatively with the Order of the Crown, as the Order of Leopold is awarded under rarer circumstances. The Order currently stands third after the Order of Leopold (1st) and the Order of the Crown (2nd) in the Belgian honors hierarchy. The Order of Leopold II is awarded by Royal Decree. The Order of Léopold II is issued in five classes and three medals: Stars and borders or stripes can be awarded together, but these deviations are currently only rarely awarded. Originally, the central stripe of the ribbon was white, as blue and white were the colours of the Congo Free State. The ribbon bar of the order, which is worn on the semi-formal dress uniform
    6.50
    4 votes
    78
    Order of St Catherine

    Order of St Catherine

    • Category: Confraternal Order
    . The Order of St Catherine (Russian: Императорский Орден Святой Екатерины) was an award of Imperial Russia. Instituted on November 24, 1714 by Peter the Great on the occasion of his marriage to Catherine I of Russia. For the majority of the time of Imperial Russia, it was the only award for ladies** (the Order of Saint Olga existed briefly from 1916–1917, but ceased with the fall of the Romanov dynasty). The statutes of the Order were first published in 1713, and the order was under the patronage of St. Catherine of Alexandria, the patron saint of the Empress. On the 24th of November 1714, on the Empress' name day, Peter the Great personally bestowed the insignia of the Order upon the Empress Catherine, creating her Grand Mistress of the Order. However, no further members were inducted until 1726. The award was bestowed in two classes: Every Russian Grand Duchess was conferred the Grand Cross of the Order at her christening (or marriage into the Romanov family), and Princesses of the Imperial Blood were invested upon attaining their majority at 18. In addition to the royal members, a fixed number (106) of other members were permitted by the statutes: The twelve Dames Grand Cross
    6.50
    4 votes
    79
    Royal Order of Cambodia

    Royal Order of Cambodia

    The Royal Order of Cambodia (French: Ordre Royal de Cambodge) was a French colonial chivalric order of knighthood in Colonial Cambodia, still in use in the kingdom of Cambodia. In 1845 Thailand and Vietnam became part of a single protectorate over the whole old kingdom of the Khmer. With French support Cambodia became an independent kingdom again under king Norodom I, though the king had to accept the protectorate and strong French influence over his national government in return for this support. On February 8, 1864 the king founded the Royal Order of Cambodia "as an Order of Merit with five classes", and it was granted after 1896 both by the Cambodian kings and by the French protectorate. The French President was ex officio a Grand Cross of the Order. The Order served to distinguish civilians and soldiers of the king or foreign powers. In 1896 the order was included in the ranks of French colonial orders of knighthood. For French appointments, the recipient had to be at least 29 years old and enter the Order first as a knight, to be promoted to a higher grade after a certain period. Only officers of the Légion d'honneur could become a commander in the Order and only commanders of
    6.50
    4 votes
    80
    Knights of Saint John of God

    Knights of Saint John of God

    The Knights of Saint John of God (formally the Chivalric order of the Holy Sepulcher of St. John of God) was founded in 2005 for the custody and defense of the grave and remains of Saint John of God, founder of the Brothers Hospitallers. These relics are venerated in the Church of Saint John of God in Granada, Spain, built in 1757. The saint's remains have been hidden twice since his death: the first time in 1808, due to fear of their profanation by the Napoleonic army, and the second time due to the attacks on the Catholic Church by Marxists and anarchists during the Spanish Civil War. This was part of a campaign of the burning of a large number of churches in Granada and all over Spain, and the murder of hundreds of clergy and members of religious institutes. Among the Order´s objectives are to encourage, advocate and spread any kind of activity (artistic, economic, cultural or architectonic) which could contribute to the conservation and improvement of the grave of Saint John of God, whose defense is sworn by the Knights. The Superior General of the Hospitaller Brothers serves as the Grand Master, currently Brother Donatus Forkan, O.H., a native of Ireland. The Knights' motto is
    8.50
    2 votes
    81

    Order of Saint Maurice

    • Category: Military order
    Order of Saint Maurice is awarded by the National Infantry Association and the certificate is signed by the Chief of Infantry of the United States Army. It is named after Saint Maurice, the leader of the Roman Theban Legion in the 3rd century. The five levels of the Order of Saint Maurice are: The Shield of Sparta is an award for spouses who have contributed, in some way, to the Infantry.
    8.50
    2 votes
    82
    Order of SS. Olga and Sophia

    Order of SS. Olga and Sophia

    The Royal Family Order of Saints Olga and Sophia (Greek: Βασιλικό Οικογενειακό Τάγμα των Αγίων Όλγας και Σοφίας) was an order of the Greek royal family. Reserved for women, it was the third highest decoration awarded by the modern Greek state and the Crown after the Order of the Redeemer and the male-only Order of Saints George and Constantine. It was instituted in January 1936 by King George II in the memory of his grandmother (Queen Olga) and his mother (Queen Sophia). The order was abolished in 1973 by the Greek state and today is awarded only by the Head of the former Greek royal family. Media related to Order of Saints Olga and Sophia at Wikimedia Commons
    8.50
    2 votes
    83
    Order of the House of Orange

    Order of the House of Orange

    The Order of the House of Orange (Dutch: Huisorde van Oranje), sometimes referred to as the House Order of Orange, is a dynastic order of the House of Orange-Nassau, the royal family of the Netherlands. The order was instituted by Queen Wilhelmina of the Netherlands in 1905 and is not subject to ministerial responsibility or influence, but is awarded at the discretion of the Dutch monarch alone. In 1905, Queen Wilhelmina felt the need for a House Order because the Order of the Oak Crown of the Grand Duchy of Luxembourg, used by her father and grandfather to reward Dutch subjects, was no longer available to her, as females were not allowed to succeed the throne of Luxembourg due to the Salic Law within its constitution in 1890. The Order of the House of Orange had a very complex nomenclature, with 18 different classes and medals: The number does not indicate a rank within the Order. The Dame of Honour was neither inferior or superior to another grade; however the highest rank was the Grand Cross. The insignia vary considerably amongst these awards; however they all share the same orange ribbon, symbolizing the House of Orange. More than 3200 decorations were conferred between 1905
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    2 votes
    84
    Order of the Liberator

    Order of the Liberator

    The Order of the Liberator is the highest distinction of Venezuela and is appointed for services to the country, outstading merit and benefits made to the community. For Venezuelans the order ranks first from other orders, national and foreign. The President of Venezuela is the Chief of the Order and has the faculty of appointing. By right, he wears the Collar of the Order. The order was created by Antonio Guzmán Blanco on September 14, 1880, and reformed in 1922 under the presidential term of Juan Vicente Gómez, the Order has as precedent the Medal of Distinction with the bust of the Liberator created on March 11, 1854 under the presidency of José Gregorio Monagas and before that, the Order of the Liberators created by Simón Bolívar in 1813.
    8.50
    2 votes
    85
    Order of the Sword

    Order of the Sword

    • Founders: Frederick I of Sweden
    The Order of the Sword (Officially Royal Order of the Sword Swedish Kungliga Svärdsorden) is a Swedish order of chivalry created by King Frederick I of Sweden on February 23, 1748, together with the Order of the Seraphim and the Order of the Polar Star. Awarded to officers, and originally intended as an award for bravery and particularly long or useful service, it eventually became a more or less obligatory award for military officers after a certain number of years in service. There were originally three grades, Knight, Commander and Commander Grand Cross, but these were later multiplied by division into classes. The motto of the order is in Latin: Pro Patria which means For Fatherland. In 1788 king Gustav III created two new grades of the order, which could only be bestowed in war time, and those are; These grades proper were only given to commissioned officers, but an affiliated decoration, the Svärdstecken ("Badge of the Sword"), introduced in 1850, was given to non-commissioned officers; one thus decorated would call himself a svärdsman ("Sword man"). In 1952 a special medal of distinction was added to the order. These could only be bestowed in wartime. They are the War Cross
    8.50
    2 votes
    86
    Order of the Thistle

    Order of the Thistle

    • Category: Monarchical Order
    • Founders: James II of England
    • Chivalric Titles: Supernumerary Knight of the Order of the Thistle
    The Most Ancient and Most Noble Order of the Thistle is an order of chivalry associated with Scotland. The current version of the Order was founded in 1687 by King James VII of Scotland (also known as James II of England and Ireland) who asserted that he was reviving an earlier Order. The Order consists of the Sovereign and sixteen Knights and Ladies, as well as certain "extra" knights (members of the British Royal Family and foreign monarchs). The Sovereign alone grants membership of the Order; he or she is not advised by the Government, as occurs with most other Orders. The Order's primary emblem is the thistle, the national flower of Scotland. The motto is Nemo me impune lacessit (Latin for "No one provokes me with impunity"). The same motto appears on the Royal Coat of Arms of the United Kingdom for use in Scotland and some pound coins, and is also the motto of the Royal Regiment of Scotland, Scots Guards, The Black Watch (Royal Highland Regiment) of Canada and Royal Scots Dragoon Guards. The patron saint of the Order is St Andrew. Most British orders of chivalry cover the whole United Kingdom, but the three most exalted ones each pertain to one constituent country only. The
    8.50
    2 votes
    87
    Royal Order of Kamehameha I

    Royal Order of Kamehameha I

    The Order of Kamehameha I was founded on 11 April 1865 by King Kamehameha V in memory of his grandfather King Kamehameha I and in commemoration of the 70th anniversary of the founding of the Kingdom of Hawaiʻi. This Order was granted to both native Hawaiians and foreigners for distinguished service to the king and the people of Hawaiʻi. Upon its inception, it became the first Knightly Order of the Kingdom of Hawaiʻi. The Order eventually fell into disuse as it was last awarded in 1886 by King Kalākaua; it was made obsolete 1893. Granting the insignia and awards of the Order was determined by the number of living members of the Order. At any given time there could only be: In the duration of the Order, it was awarded 57 times by King Kamehameha V, and 82 times by King Kalākaua. Number of awards in the history of the Order: The insignia consists of a Maltese cross in gold or silver with white enamel surmounted by the Hawaiian crown. Rays of gold or silver are found between the arms of the cross. Enameled in blue and white and centered on the cross is a circular shield, the center of which is inscribed and elaborate "K". On the periphery of the shield, in a blue band, is the
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    2 votes
    88
    Royal Order of the Seraphim

    Royal Order of the Seraphim

    • Founders: Frederick I of Sweden
    The Royal Order of the Seraphim (Swedish Kungliga Serafimerorden) (Seraphim being a category of Angels) is a Swedish Royal order of chivalry created by King Frederick I of Sweden on 23 February 1748, together with the Order of the Sword and the Order of the Polar Star. After the reorganization of the orders in 1975 the order is only awarded to foreign heads of state and members of the royal family (the last non-royal Swedish holder was Sten Rudholm). The order has only one class with the dignity of Knight (Member for women and Member of the Cloth for clergymen), and is the foremost order of Sweden. The three above mentioned Orders together with the Order of Vasa form the Orders of His Majesty the King (Swedish Kungl. Maj:ts Orden), a term also used for the chancellery of the Orders in the Royal Palace. A Swedish Knight (Member/of the Cloth) of the Order of the Seraphim is not referred to as a Knight (Member/of the Cloth) of the Seraphim, but rather as a Knight and Commander of the Orders of His Majesty the King (Swedish: Riddare och Kommendör av Kunglig Majestäts Orden). This form is used because the Swedish word orden is an old plural form which indicates that a knight has to be
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    89

    Companion of Distinguished Service Order

    Companion of Distinguished Service Order ¬タモ The Distinguished Service Order (DSO) is a military decoration of the United Kingdom, and formerly of other Commonwealth countries instituted in 1886. It is awarded for meritorious or distinguished service by officers of the armed forces during wartime, typically in actual combat.
    7.33
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    90
    Order of St. John

    Order of St. John

    The Most Venerable Order of the Hospital of Saint John of Jerusalem (French: L'Ordre très vénérable de l'hôpital de Saint-Jean de Jérusalem), is a royal order of chivalry established in 1831 and found today throughout the Commonwealth of Nations, Hong Kong, Ireland, and the United States of America, with the world-wide mission "to prevent and relieve sickness and injury, and to act to enhance the health and well-being of people anywhere in the world." It is commonly referred to simply as the Order of St. John, or as the Venerable Order of Saint John (VOSJ) when distinction from other similarly named orders is desired. The order's approximately 25,000 confrères, supported by 4,000 employees and 300,000 volunteers, are mostly of the Protestant faith, though those of other Christian denominations or other religions are accepted into the order, but usually honorary membership is awarded to deserving and distinguished adherents of other religions. Except via appointment to certain government or ecclesiastical offices in some realms, membership of the order is by invitation only, and individuals may not petition for admission. It is perhaps best known through its service organizations,
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    91

    Order of the Ermine

    The Order of the Ermine (L’Ordre de l’Hermine) was a chivalric order of the 14th and 15th centuries in the Duchy of Brittany. The ermine is the emblem of Brittany. In the 20th century, it was revived by the Cultural Institute of Brittany as an honor for those contributing to Breton culture. During his last period of exile at the court of England (1377–1379), the Breton duke John V observed the functioning of the Order of the Garter. Back in Brittany, in 1381, he created his own order. The little we know of this order comes from Guillaume de St-André. In 1448, it became the Order of the Ermine and the Ear of Grain (Ordre de l'Hermine et de l'Épi). The ermine was a natural choice for the badge of his order, since the heraldic representation of its fur is the coat of arms of the Dukes of Brittany. In medieval times the ermine was believed to risk capture or death rather than sully the purity of its white fur and thus a symbol of concern for the uncompromising integrity of one's personal honor. Lodovico Sforza was member of this order since 1488, and the ermine in Leonardo's portrait Lady with an Ermine may be reference to it. A modern honor by the same name was created in 1972 to
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    92
    Order of the Immaculate Conception of Vila Viçosa

    Order of the Immaculate Conception of Vila Viçosa

    The Order of the Immaculate Conception of Vila Viçosa (also known as The Order of Our Lady of Conception of Vila Vicosa) is an dynastic order of knighthood of the House of Braganza, the former Portuguese Royal Family. The current Grand Master of the Order is Duarte Pio, Duke of Braganza, the Head of the House of Braganza. The order was created by King John VI of Portugal in Rio de Janeiro on 6 February 1818, the date of his acclamation, in recognition for the efficient protection of the Kingdom's Spiritual Sovereign (Portugal is known as the Land of Santa Maria since its foundation). The Blessed Virgin Mother under the invocation of the Immmaculate Conception (venerated in the Ducal Chapel of the Palace of Vila Viçosa) had earlier been acclaimed "Queen" and Patroness of the kingdom by King John IV on March 25, 1646 following a referendum of the Empire that lasted 6 years and asked subjects: 1. If they believed the Blessed Virgin Mary to have been conceived without sin, and 2. If they believed that the Blessed Virgin Mary was the physical reigning Queen of Portugal and not just symbolically the Patroness. The people answered affirmatively and since the Coronation that took place at
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    93

    Order of the Merit of Chile

    The Order of Merit (Spanish: Orden del Mérito) is a Chilean military order and was created in 1929. Succeeding the Medal of the Merit, it was created during the term of the President Germán Riesco through the Minister of War decree No. 1350 on September 4, 1906. This new national distinction was created to recognise the meritorious service provided by foreign military personnel to Chilean officials. The first 200 military medals were minted in gold and silver, giving them the title of First and Second Class. They were minted at the Casa de la Moneda, having a tricolor ribbon. The order had three classes: First Class, Second Class, and Third Class; but later a new class was added (Grand Officer) that would be awarded to heads of state. In 1925, all the classes were renamed to: The order is only awarded to foreigners.
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    94
    Order of the Precious Crown

    Order of the Precious Crown

    • Category: Japanese Order
    The Order of the Precious Crown (宝冠章, Hōkan-shō) is a Japanese order, established on January 4, 1888 by Emperor Meiji of Japan. Originally the order had five classes, but on April 13, 1896 the sixth, seventh and eighth classes were added. This Order is conventionally reserved for female recipients; however, men have occasionally been accorded this honor. More often, men have been awarded the Order of the Rising Sun rather than the Order of the Precious Crown. In 1917, medals of the Order of the Crown were bestowed upon twenty-nine Americans who participated in the Russo-Japanese War. This unusual list of honorees was composed of ten women volunteer nurses and nineteen correspondents of American newspapers. The first class honor has been typically conferred to female royalty. As originally conceived, the order consisted of eight classes. Unlike its European counterparts, the order may be conferred posthumously. The badge of the order is a gold oval medallion, with floral designs at its four ends; at the centre is an ancient Japanese crown on a blue background, surrounded by a red ring. It is suspended from a smaller badge, its design varies according to class, on a ribbon in yellow
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    95
    Order of Saint Januarius

    Order of Saint Januarius

    The Illustrious Royal Order of Saint Januarius (Italian: L'Insigne Reale Ordine di San Gennaro) is an order of knighthood bestowed by the head of the Royal House of Bourbon of the Two Sicilies. It was the last great dynastic collar order to be constituted as a chivalric fraternity, with a limitation to Roman Catholics, and a direct attachment to the dynasty rather than the state. The order continues to be bestowed today by the Head of the Royal House of Bourbon of the Two Sicilies. The founder of the Order, Charles VII of Naples, who ruled from 1734 until 1759, was the first reigning monarch to reside in this kingdom since 1502. As a young monarch, Charles was considerably influenced by his father Philip V of Spain, who had proved a capable if erratic ruler, not only bringing peace to his kingdom but ultimately re-establishing Spanish influence in Italy. Although the Order's foundation had been planned for some time, the young king's marriage to Maria Amalia of Saxony provided a suitable opportunity. Its statutes and foundation both date to 3 July 1738 and the first promotions to the Order were announced three days later. These statutes limited membership of the Order to sixty
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    96
    Order of Saint Stephen of Hungary

    Order of Saint Stephen of Hungary

    The Royal Hungarian Order of Saint Stephen The Order of Saint Stephen of Hungary, the royal Hungarian order, founded in 1764 by the empress Maria Theresa of Austria, consisted of the grand master (the sovereign), 20 knights grand cross, 30 knights commanders and 50 knights. The badge is a green enamelled cross with gold borders, suspended from the Hungarian crown; the red enamelled medallion in the centre of the cross bears a white patriarchal cross issuing from a coroneted green mound; on either side of the cross are the letters M.T. in gold, and the whole is surrounded by a white fillet with the legend Publicum Meritorum Praemium. The ribbon is green with a crimson central stripe. The collar, only worn by the knights grand cross, is of gold, and consists of Hungarian crowns linked together alternately by the monograms of St Stephen, S.S., and the foundress, M.T.; the centre of the collar is formed by a flying lark encircled by the motto Stringit amore. — From the 1911 Encyclopædia Britannica, "Knighthood" article The order is the namesake of Hungary’s most famous king, Stephen I (969 – 1038), whose reign (997 – 1038) was marked by his consolidation of power among the various
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    97
    Order of St. Andrew

    Order of St. Andrew

    • Category: Monarchical Order
    • Founders: Peter I of Russia
    The Order of St. Andrew the Apostle the First-Called (Russian: Орден Святого апостола Андрея Первозванного) was the first and the highest order of chivalry of the Russian Empire. Abolished under the USSR, it was re established as the top Russian Order in 1998. The Order was established in 1698 by Tsar Peter the Great, in honour of Saint Andrew, the first apostle of Jesus and patron saint of Russia. It was bestowed in a single class and was only awarded for the most outstanding civilian or military merit. Peter learned this from his travels in the West during the Great Embassy. In the past, service to the Russian state was rewarded with money or large estates. He witnessed first hand the awards ceremonies for England's Order of the Garter and Austria's Order of the Golden Fleece and noticed the loyalty and pride of the awardees. It also saved the state land and money. Count Fyodor Golovin was the first recipient of the order. Until its abolition following the Russian Revolution of 1917, just over one thousand awards had been made. During the monarchy, recipients of the Order of St. Andrew also automatically received the Order of St. Alexander Nevsky, the Order of the White Eagle,
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    98
    Honorary Order of the Yellow Star

    Honorary Order of the Yellow Star

    The Honorary Order of the Yellow Star (Dutch: Ere-Orde van de Gele Ster) is the highest state decoration of the Republic of Suriname. The Order was instituted in 1975 at the independence of Suriname and replaced the Dutch Order of the Netherlands Lion. It is awarded to individuals for their meritorious service to the Surinamese people or nation. The order is also eligible for foreigners. The president of Suriname is the Grand Master of the order. The Honorary Order of the Yellow Star is issued in five classes, plus two medals: The president of Suriname as Grand Master wears the collar of the order. The Collar of the Order is in gold, with alternating the "Sen" (S-shaped monogram) and gold stars as facets, connected with small chains. The whole chain rests on a folded Ribbon of the order that culminates in two bows. The bows are worn on the shoulders. The Badge of the order exists of a gold gilt five-pointed star each topped with a small ball, and gold gilt rays between the arms, resulting in a badge with the shape of a pentagon. The central disk shows the yellow star of the Flag and Coat of arms of Suriname on white enamel, surrounded by a black enamel and gold edged ring
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    99

    Militia of Jesus Christ

    • Category: Military order
    The Militia of Jesus Christ (Italian: Milizia di Gesù Cristo) was a military order in Lombardy during the High Middle Ages. It was founded at Parma by Bartholomew, Bishop of Vicenza, a Dominican, in 1233 and approved by Pope Gregory IX, who gave it a rule in 1234 and placed under the jurisdiction of the Dominicans. Its chief purpose was to combat heresy, like Catharism and Waldensianism, and to strengthen the bond between the Roman Church and the local nobility. In imitation of the Order of Santiago, members of the Militia did not take a vow of chastity, nor did they live communally or in poverty. The membership in turn was divided into two classes: the high-born urban nobility and the bourgeousie. The urban nature of the militia meant an emphasis on helping the weak and disadvantaged in the cities. Members were required to perform confession thrice annually (at Easter, Christmas, and Pentecost) and acts of liturgical devotion daily or hourly. There were monthly meetings for the biblical instruction of the membership, conducted by Dominican friars. The knights of the order even wore the white tunic and black cloak of the Dominicans. The head officer of the Militia was the master
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    100

    Order of Australia

    The Order of Australia is an order of chivalry established on 14 February 1975 by Elizabeth II, Queen of Australia, to recognise Australian citizens and other persons for achievement or for meritorious service. Before the establishment of the order, Australian citizens received British honours. The order is divided into general and military divisions, with the following grades in descending order of seniority: The Order was established on 14 February 1975 by letters patent of Elizabeth II, Queen of Australia, and countersigned by the then Prime Minister Gough Whitlam. The original Order had only three grades: Companion (AC), Officer (AO), and Member (AM). On 24 May 1976, the further categories of Knight (AK), Dame (AD), and Medal of the Order of Australia (OAM) were established by the Queen on the advice of Whitlam's successor, Malcolm Fraser. Following his 1983 election, Prime Minister Bob Hawke abolished the Knight and Dame categories. On 3 March 1986, the Queen co-signed letters patent revoking the categories of Knight and Dame. Existing Knights and Dames were not affected by this change. The Queen of Australia is Sovereign Head of the Order while the Governor-General is
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    101

    Order of Christopher Columbus

    The Order of Christopher Columbus (Spanish: Orden Heráldica de Cristóbal Colón) is an order of the Dominican Republic. It was established on 21 July 1937. The Head of State confers the order, by advice of the council of the order, both to civilians and military personnel to recognize services. This order honors the life and works of Christopher Columbus firstly and secondly recognize services to the Dominican Republic or humanitarian services and distinction in the arts and sciences. There is a council of the order consisting of ten members. The Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Dominican Republic is an ex oficio member and president of the council. The members of the council are awarded with the forth grade of the order (Grand Officer). The order is divided in seven grades: The collar of the Order will be solid, of 18 carat gold, formed in four parts, consisting of a laurel´s coronet and of Christopher Columbus´s bust; in the center of the collar will have (of a large size and enameled in natural colors) the Coat of Arms of the Republic, which above will be adorned with fifteen brilliant. Below, will suspended the order’s badge. The laurel’s coronet, the coat of arms and the
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    102
    Order of the October Revolution

    Order of the October Revolution

    The Order of the October Revolution (Russian: Орден Октябрьской Революции, Orden Oktyabr'skoy Revolyutsii) was instituted on October 31, 1967, in time for the 50th anniversary of the October Revolution. It was awarded to individuals or groups for services furthering communism or the state, or in enhancing the defenses of the Soviet Union, military and civil. It ranked second amongst the Soviet orders, after the Order of Lenin. The order consisted of a badge, which was a red star with golden rays between the arms; at the centre was a pentagon bearing the image of the Cruiser Aurora participating in the October Revolution. Above it was a red flag bearing the words "October Revolution" in Russian. A Hammer and Sickle emblem was placed at the bottom. The badge was worn on the left chest with a red ribbon bearing five blue stripes at the centre. The Russian cruiser Aurora was itself awarded with the Order of the October Revolution, the only ship ever to have received the award. Military units and institutions receiving the award applied the order name to their title upon its reception.
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    103

    Royal Order of Sahametrei

    The Royal Order of Sahametrei(Khmer:គ្រឿងឥស្សរិយយសលំដាប់សហមេត្រី) is a medal presented by the government of the Kingdom of Cambodia by Royal Decree of the King of Cambodia. It is conferred primarily on foreigners who have rendered distinguished services to the King and to the people of Cambodia, particularly in the field of external relations and diplomatic services or, as a token of friendship. The Royal Order of Sahametrei was established by King Norodom Sihanouk on September 9, 1948. It was instituted in three classes but expanded on August 23, 1956 to five classes: The Order became dormant in 1975 under the government of Democratic Kampuchea. It was reinstituted by Royal Decree No.1095/01 on 5 October 1995 by King Norodom Sihanouk.
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    104
    Royal Order of the Lion

    Royal Order of the Lion

    • Founders: Leopold II of Belgium
    The Royal Order of the Lion (French: Ordre Royal du Lion) (Dutch: Orde van de Leeuw) was established by King Leopold II of Belgium on 9 April 1891, in his capacity as ruler of the Congo Free State, and was awarded for services to Congo and its ruler that did not deserve the award of the Order of the African Star and were not necessarily performed from within the Congo. It was incorporated into the Belgian honours system following the annexation of the Congo Free State by Belgium. The motto of the Order is "Travail et progrès" (French: Labour and progress). The King of the Belgians is its Grand Master. Even though Congo is no longer a Belgian colony, it is still considered to be a Belgian Order. The Royal Order of the Lion is awarded by Royal Decree. Following the independence of Congo in 1960, the Royal Order of the Lion is no longer awarded (although it still exists). The Royal Order of the Lion has five classes and three medals: The Badge of the order is a white enamel Rupert cross with a perimeter channel of blue enamel, with the angles in-filled with filigree 'back to back' letter "C"s for "Congo". The central disc depicts the crowned Belgian lion on a blue enamel background
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    105
    The order of Saint Stanislaus. As issued by the head of the Imperial House of Romanov

    The order of Saint Stanislaus. As issued by the head of the Imperial House of Romanov

    The Order of Saint Stanislaus (Polish: Order św. Stanisława, Russian: Орденъ Св. Станислава), also spelled Stanislas, was an order in the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth. The order existed since 1765 as Polish and since 1831 as an order of Imperial Russia. This page describes the order that is still awarded by the head of the Imperial House of Romanov. Stanislaus II Augustus Poniatowski, King of Poland established the Order of the Knights of Saint Stanislaus, Bishop and Martyr on May 7, 1765 to honour the service to the King. After the partition of Poland it was renewed in the Duchy of Warsaw in 1807. Since 1815 in the Polish (Congress) Kingdom, the order, originally in a single class, was retained and divided into four classes. After the downfall of the November Uprising, the order was added to the awards system of the Russian Empire in 1832, where it remained until 1917. As it was often awarded to the very policemen who suppressed Polish independence, democracy, and culture, the order became very unpopular. When in 1918 Poland regained its independence as the Second Polish Republic, the unpopular order was not renewed and was instead replaced by the Order of Polonia Restituta. One
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    106

    Military Order of Italy

    The Military Order of Italy is the highest military order of the Italian Republic and the former Kingdom of Italy. It was founded as the Military Order of Savoy, a national order by the King of Sardinia, Vittorio Emanuele I, Duke of Savoy in 1815. The order is awarded in five degrees for distinguished wartime conduct of units of the armed forces or individual personnel that has "proven expertise, a sense of responsibility and valour." The order was continued on the unification of Italy in 1861 and was revived, under its new name, following the foundation of the Republic in 1946. It is bestowed by decree of the President of the Italian Republic, head of the order, on the recommendation of the Minister of Defence. Today there are just 14 living recipients: five from the Army, three from the Navy and six from the Air Force. Recipients of the Ordine militare di Savoia were transferred retaining their existing accoutrements and seniority. The various degrees of the order, which may be conferred posthumously, are as follows: The lowest of these may also be awarded for peacetime actions.
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    107
    Italian Order of Merit for Culture and Art

    Italian Order of Merit for Culture and Art

    Italian Order of Merit for Culture and Art is an Italian order, established on November 16, 1950. The order has three class, gold, silver, bronze, and may be awarded to men and women for contributions to Italian's art, literature or culture. The order is conferred by the President of the Italian Republic in person on The Republic Day. The prize is awarded by decree of the President of the Italian Republic and the proposal of the Ministry of Cultural Heritage and Activities who chairs a committee which includes evaluation of the exponents Italian academies. List of Italian orders of knighthood
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    108

    New Zealand Order of Merit

    • Chivalric Titles: Companion of the New Zealand Order of Merit
    The New Zealand Order of Merit is an order of chivalry established on 30 May 1996 by Elizabeth II, Queen of New Zealand, "for those persons who in any field of endeavour, have rendered meritorious service to the Crown and nation or who have become distinguished by their eminence, talents, contributions or other merits." The order includes five levels: Prior to 1996 New Zealanders received appointments to various British orders, such as the Order of the Bath, the Order of St Michael and St George, the Order of the British Empire, or the Order of the Companions of Honour, as well as the distinction of Knight Bachelor. The change came about after the Prime Minister's Honours Advisory Committee (1995) was created "to consider and present options and suggestions on the structure of a New Zealand Royal Honours System in New Zealand, which is designed to recognise meritorious service, gallantry and bravery and long service" The number of Knights and Dames Grand Companion (and Principal Companions) is limited to 30 living people. Additionally, new appointments are limited to 15 Knight Companions, 40 Companions, 80 Officers and 140 Members per year. Ordinary membership is open to citizens
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    109
    Order of Monfragüe

    Order of Monfragüe

    • Category: Military order
    The Order of Monfragüe (Spanish: Orden de Monfragüe) was a Spanish military order founded at the castle of Monfragüe near Plasencia on the Tagus in 1196. The order was founded by the knights of the Order of Mountjoy who dissented from a merger with the Knights Templar. The order never prospered and on 23 May 1221, by order of Ferdinand III of Castile, it was merged into the Order of Calatrava. In the twelfth century Monfragüe was the centre of a Mountjoy commandary before it became the headquarters of its own order. The earliest reference to the commandary is in an economic transaction involving the commander, Gonzalo Padilla, and his fellow brothers (freyes, freires) of the Order. As early as 1186 the Order had tried to amalgamate with the Templars but failed. The remaining decade of its existence was spent in a state of utter collapse. The Order was united in December 1187 with the Hospital of the Holy Redeemer, but already a distinction had appeared in its ranks between the master of the order, Fralmo, and his followers on one hand and the commander of the Order in the Kingdom of Castile, Rodrigo González, and his support. By mid-1188 there was a schism in the Order, though it
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    110

    Order of New Zealand

    The Order of New Zealand is the highest honour in New Zealand's honours system, created "to recognise outstanding service to the Crown and people of New Zealand in a civil or military capacity". It was instituted on 6 February 1987. The order comprises the Sovereign and Ordinary, Additional and Honorary members. The ordinary membership is limited to 20 living members, and at any time there may be fewer than 20. The additional members may be appointed to commemorate important royal, state or national occasions, and such appointments were made in 1990 for the 150th anniversary of the Treaty of Waitangi, in 2002 for the Queen’s Golden Jubilee, in 2007 for the 20th anniversary of the institution of the Order, and in 2012 for the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee. Honorary membership includes citizens of nations of which the Queen is not Head of State. Members are entitled to the post-nominal letters "ONZ". The insignia is made up of an oval medallion of the Arms of New Zealand in gold and coloured enamel, worn on a white and ochre ribbon around the neck. The order is modelled on the British Order of Merit and the Order of the Companions of Honour. (name followed by date of appointment and date
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    Order of Saints Maurice and Lazarus

    Order of Saints Maurice and Lazarus

    The Order of Saints Maurice and Lazarus is an order of chivalry awarded by the House of Savoy, the heads of which were formerly Kings of Italy. The order was formed by a union in Italy of the original Order of St Lazarus and the Order of Saint Maurice in 1572 and has around 2,000 members. The Order of Saint Lazarus was established as a military and religious community at the time of the Latin Kingdom of Jerusalem, probably some years before 1090. Presuming a foundation date of 1099 for the Order of the Hospital (now the Sovereign Military Order of Malta), the Order of Saint Lazarus is arguably the oldest surviving of the medieval military-religious knightly orders. From its inception, the order was concerned with the relief of leprosy, and many of its members were lepers who had been knights in other orders. It became very rich, its practices dubious, and its funds much abused. With the fall of Acre in 1291 the knights of St Lazarus fled the Holy Land and Egypt and settled in France and, in 1311, in Naples. In the sixteenth century, the order declined in credibility and wealth. With papal support, Duke of Savoy became Grand Master in 1572. The Order of St Maurice was founded in
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    112
    Order of St. Sava

    Order of St. Sava

    The Order of St. Sava was a decoration instituted by the order King Milan I of Serbia in 1883. The Order of Saint Sava originally was established to recognize civilians for meritorious achievements in the arts and sciences. In 1914 a change was made permitting military personnel to receive the honor for military merit. Since 1945 the highest award presented by the Serbian Orthodox Church is called the Order of St. Sava. There is also a fraternal organization with a similar name, the Loyal Order of St. Sava, organized for social interactions among Serbian American residents of Milwaukee, Wisconsin.
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    113
    Order of the Cross of Terra Mariana

    Order of the Cross of Terra Mariana

    The Order of the Cross of Terra Mariana (Estonian: Maarjamaa Risti teenetemärk, sometimes translated as the Order of the Cross of St. Mary’s Land) was instituted in 1995 to honour the independence of the Estonian state. The Order of the Cross of Terra Mariana is bestowed upon the President of the Republic. Presidents of the Republic who have ceased to hold office shall keep the Order of the Cross of Terra Mariana. The Collar of the Order was used de facto as the badge of office of the President of the Republic, since the original Presidential collar, that of the Order of the National Coat of Arms was taken from Estonia to the Kremlin after the Soviet occupation of the country in 1940, where it remains to this day. However a new collar of that order was made in 2008. The Order of the Cross of Terra Mariana is also given as a decoration of the highest class to foreigners who have rendered special services to the Republic of Estonia. As such it is the highest and most distinguished order granted to non-Estonian citizens. The Order of the Cross of Terra Mariana comprises six classes: The crosses and shields of all the classes of the Order of the Cross of Terra Mariana have the same
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    114

    Order of the National Hero

    The Order of the National Hero is an honour awarded by the government of Belize. The Order of the National Hero is given only to Belizean citizens for "Extraordinary and outstanding achievement and merit in service to Belize or to humanity at large". It was instituted on 16 August 1991.
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    Order of the Polar Star

    Order of the Polar Star

    • Founders: Frederick I of Sweden
    The Order of the Polar Star (Swedish Nordstjärneorden) is a Swedish order of chivalry created by King Frederick I of Sweden on 23 February 1748, together with the Order of the Sword and the Order of the Seraphim. The Order of the Polar Star was until 1975 intended as a reward for Swedish and foreign "civic merits, for devotion to duty, for science, literary, learned and useful works and for new and beneficial institutions". Its motto is, as seen on the blue enameled centre of the badge, Nescit Occasum. This is Latin and means "it knows no decline". This is to prove that Sweden is as constant as a never setting star. The Order's colour is black. This was chosen so that when wearing the black sash, the white, blue and golden cross would stand out and shine as the light of enlightenment from the black surface. The choice of black for the Order's ribbon may also have been inspired by the black ribbon of the French Order of St. Michael, which at the time the Order of the Polar Star was instituted was also awarded to meritorious civil servants. At present, the ribbon of the Order is blue with yellow stripes near the edges (i.e., the national colors, but the reverse of the Order of the
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    International Order of Saint Stanislaus founded in 1979

    International Order of Saint Stanislaus founded in 1979

    The Order of Saint Stanislaus (Polish: Order św. Stanisława, Russian: Орденъ Св. Станислава) was an Order in Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth. The Order of Saint Stanislaus originally existed between 1765 and 1917. There are three or four Orders of Saint Stanislaus today. These different Orders and Grandmasters do not recognize each other as legitimate successors or revivals of the Order of Saint-Stanislaus, and none of them is recognized by the Polish government. Stanislaus II Augustus Poniatowski, King of Poland established the Order of the Knights of Saint Stanislaus, Bishop and Martyr on May 7, 1765 to honor the service to the King. After the partition of Poland it was recognized in the Grand Duchy of Warsaw in 1807. Since 1815 in the Polish (Congress) Kingdom, the order, originally in a single class, was retained and divided into four classes. After the downfall of the November Uprising, the order was added to the awards system of the Russian Empire in 1832, where it remained until 1917. In 1918 Poland regained its independence as the Second Polish Republic, the order was not renewed and was replaced by the Order of Polonia Restituta.
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    117

    Militia of the Faith of Jesus Christ

    • Category: Military order
    The Militia or Order of the (Holy) Faith of Jesus Christ (Latin: Militia Jesu Christi) was an ephemeral military order founded in Languedoc in or shortly before 1221. It owed its origins probably to Folquet de Marselha, the Bishop of Toulouse; Simon IV de Montfort, leader of the Albigensian Crusade; and possibly to Dominic of Caleruega, the founder of the Friars Preachers. In June 1221 it appears to have been approved by Pope Honorius III, who gave it permission to observe the ordinances of the Order of the Temple of Solomon. In July the Pope appears to have transferred all authority over the foundation of the order (and therefore its survival) to the papal legate Conrad of Urach. The specific purpose of the founding was "to promise aid and succour to Amaury de Montfort and his heirs, for the defence of his person and domains" and as inquisitors for the "seeking out and destruction of evil heretics and their lands and also of those who rebel against the faith of the holy church." This was confirmed by Honorius in two letters of the summer of 1221. The order has been described as a penitential confraternity rather than a full-fledged military order, but nevertheless it was founded
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    Order of St. Gregory the Great

    Order of St. Gregory the Great

    • Founders: Pope Gregory XVI
    The Pontifical Equestrian Order of St. Gregory the Great (Latin: Ordo Sancti Gregorii Magni, Italian: Ordine di San Gregorio Magno), was established on September 1, 1831, by Pope Gregory XVI, seven months after his election. It is one of the five orders of knighthood of the Holy See. The order is bestowed on Catholic men and women (and in rare cases, non-Catholic men) in recognition of their personal service to the Holy See and the Church, unusual labours, support of the Holy See, and the good example set in their communities and country. The Order has four classes in civil and military divisions: Its motto is Pro Deo et Principe (For God and Prince). The inaugural brief states, in part, that "gentlemen of proven loyalty to the Holy See who, by reason of their nobility of birth and the renown of their deeds or the degree of their munificence, are deemed worthy to be honoured by a public expression of esteem on the part of the Holy See".The end of the brief states that they must progressively maintain, by continued meritorious deed, the reputation and trust they had already inspired, and prove themselves worthy of the honour that had been conferred on them, by unswerving fidelity to
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    Order of the Garter

    Order of the Garter

    • Category: Monarchical Order
    • Founders: Edward III of England
    • Chivalric Titles: Royal Lady of the Garter
    The Most Noble Order of the Garter, founded in 1348, is the highest order of chivalry existing in England and is dedicated to the image and arms of St. George as England's patron saint. It is presently bestowed on recipients from British and other Commonwealth realms. After peerages (and after the Victoria Cross and George Cross), it is the pinnacle of the honours system in the United Kingdom. Membership in the order is limited to the Sovereign, the Prince of Wales, and no more than twenty-four members, or Companions. The order also includes Supernumerary knights and ladies (e.g., members of the British Royal Family and foreign monarchs). Bestowing the honour has been described as one of the Monarch's few remaining truly personal, executive prerogatives. The order's emblem, depicted on insignia, is a garter with the motto Honi soit qui mal y pense (Middle French: "shame upon him who thinks evil upon it", or "evil to him who evil thinks") in gold lettering. Members of the order wear such a garter on ceremonial occasions. Most British honours encompass the whole United Kingdom, but the topmost three each pertain to one constituent nation. The Order of the Garter, pertaining to
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    Order of the Gold Lion of the House of Nassau

    Order of the Gold Lion of the House of Nassau

    The Order of the Gold Lion of the House of Nassau (French: Ordre du Lion d'Or de la Maison de Nassau, Dutch: (Huis)orde van de Gouden Leeuw van Nassau) is a chivalric order shared by the two branches (the Ottonian and Walram lines) of the House of Nassau. In the capacity of the Walram line the Order of the Gold Lion of the House of Nassau is the highest Luxembourgian national order, bestowed by the Grand Duke of Luxembourg. It may be awarded on foreign sovereigns, princes of sovereign houses, and heads of state for meritous service to Luxembourg and the Grand Duke. In the capacity of the Ottonian line the order is a house order or dynastic order of the Dutch Royal House of Orange-Nassau, awarded as a personal gift by the Queen of the Netherlands. In this case the honour is conferred on a person who have rendered special service to the Royal House. The order was founded by Grand Ducal decree on 31 March 1858 by King-Grand Duke William III. The honour was to be shared between both branches of the House of Nassau, under agreement between William, King of the Netherlands and Grand Duke of Luxembourg, and Adolphe, Duke of Nassau and future Grand Duke of Luxembourg. The order originally
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    Order of the Holy Spirit

    Order of the Holy Spirit

    • Category: Monarchical Order
    The Order of the Holy Spirit, also known as the Order of the Knights of the Holy Spirit, (French: L'Ordre du Saint-Esprit; L'Ordre des Chevaliers du Saint-Esprit) was an Order of Chivalry under the French Monarchy. It should not be confused with the Congregation of the Holy Ghost or with the Order of the Holy Ghost. It was the senior chivalric order of France by precedence, although not by age (the Order of Saint Michael having been created one hundred years earlier). Prior to the creation of the Order of the Holy Spirit in 1578 by Henri III, the senior order of chivalry in France had been the Order of Saint Michael. This order had originally been created to rival the Burgundian Order of the Golden Fleece, and to help ensure that leading French nobles remained loyal to the Crown. Its membership was initially restricted to a small number of powerful princes and nobles, but this increased dramatically due to the pressures of the Wars of Religion: at the beginning of the reign of Henry III, the order had several hundred living members, ranging from kings to bourgeois. Recognising that the order had been significantly devalued, Henry founded the Order of the Holy Spirit December 31,
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    Order of Merit for Labour

    • Founders: Victor Emmanuel III of Italy
    The Order of Merit for Labour was founded as national order of chivalry in 1923 by King Vittorio Emanuele III of Italy; it is awarded to those "who have been singularly meritorious" in agriculture, industry and commerce, crafts, lending and insurance. It is a continuation of the earlier Ordine al Merito Agrario, Industriale e Commerciale founded in 1901. Members of the order may use the title Cavaliere del lavoro. The origins of the order lie with King Umberto I who, in 1898, instituted "a decoration for agricultural and industrial merit and a medal of honour." The first was the exclusive prerogative of large landowners and industrialists, the latter for their employees. This was replaced by the Chivalrous or Knightly Order of Agricultural, Industrial and Commercial Merit in 1901, which was intended by Vittorio Emanuele III to give greater dignity to the earlier award. Awarded in the single degree of Knight, the order is open to all Italians, living at home and overseas. Every year, on 1 June, 25 new Knights of Labour are invested from a shortlist of 40 candidates. The related Star of Merit for Labour, established in 1923, confers the title of Maestro del Lavoro. The order is
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    Order of the Indian Empire

    Order of the Indian Empire

    • Category: Monarchical Order
    • Founders: Queen Victoria
    The Most Eminent Order of the Indian Empire is an order of chivalry founded by Queen Victoria in 1878. The Order includes members of three classes: No appointments have been made since 1947, the year of the Partition of India. With the death of the last surviving knight, the Maharaja of Dhrangadhra, the order became dormant in 2010. The motto of the Order is Imperatricis auspiciis, (Latin for "Under the auspices of the Empress"), a reference to Queen Victoria, the first Empress of India. The Order is the junior British order of chivalry associated with the Empire of India; the senior one is The Most Exalted Order of the Star of India. The British founded the Order in 1878 to reward British and "native" officials who served in India. The Order originally had only one class (Companion), but expanded to comprise two classes in 1887. The British authorities intended the Order of the Indian Empire as a less exclusive version of the Order of the Star of India (founded in 1861); consequently, many more appointments were made to the former than to the latter. On 15 February 1887, the Order of the Indian Empire formally became "The Most Eminent Order of the Indian Empire" and was divided
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    Grand Order of King Dmitar Zvonimir

    Grand Order of King Dmitar Zvonimir

    The Grand Order of King Dmitar Zvonimir (Croatian: Velered kralja Dmitra Zvonimira s lentom i Danicom), or more fully the Grand Order of King Dmitar Zvonimir with sash and Morning Star (Velered kralja Dmitra Zvonimira s lentom i Danicom), is an order of the Republic of Croatia. It ranks fourth in the Croatian order of precedence after the Grand Order of King Petar Krešimir IV. The order is among only four orders that hold the title of grand order and has one class, like all Croatian orders and decorations (except the Homeland's Gratitude Medal). Only highly ranked state and religious officials, whether foreign or national, are eligible for this order.
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    National Order of Quebec

    The National Order of Quebec, termed officially in French as l'Ordre national du Québec, and in English abbreviation as the Order of Quebec, is a civilian honour for merit in the Canadian province of Quebec. Instituted in 1984 when Lieutenant Governor Jean-Pierre Côté granted Royal Assent to the Loi sur l'Ordre national du Québec (National Order of Quebec Act), the order is administered by the Governor-in-Council and is intended to honour current or former Quebec residents for conspicuous achievements in any field, being thus described as the highest honour in Quebec and French America. Though the National Order of Quebec was established with the granting of Royal Assent by Quebec's lieutenant governor and the Canadian sovereign is the fount of honour, the viceroy does not, unlike other provinces, form an explicit part of the organization. Instead, the monarch's representative is related to the order only by virtue of his or her place in council, collectively termed the government of Quebec, to which the constitution of the Order of Quebec makes specific reference. The order contains three grades, each with accordant post-nominal letters and place in the Canadian order of
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    Order for Loyalty and Merit

    Order for Loyalty and Merit

    The Order for Loyalty and Merit (Dutch: Orde van Trouw en Verdienste) is a house order of the Dutch Royal House of Orange-Nassau. The Order came into being as a result of Queen Juliana's reorganization of The House Order of Orange (Huisorde van Oranje) in 1969. The Order for Loyalty and Merit is conferred "upon those persons who have loyally and faithfully, and with merit and character assisted the Head of State or the members of the Royal House during their obligations and their daily work." The order has two grades: The cross in gold or silver is worn on a ribbon on the left chest. The decorations are awarded after 25 and 40 years of service. The monarch is lenient as far as the number of years in her service are concerned. Hardly anyone manages to work until his or her 65th birthday. Many servants of the Queen receive their Cross of merit for Loyalty and Merit in Gold after 35 years in the Royal Household.
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    Order of British Columbia

    Order of British Columbia

    The Order of British Columbia is a civilian honour for merit in the Canadian province of British Columbia. Instituted in 1989 by Lieutenant Governor David Lam, on the advice of the Cabinet under Premier Bill Vander Zalm, the order is administered by the Governor-in-Council and is intended to honour current or former British Columbia residents for conspicuous achievements in any field, being thus described as the highest honour amongst all others conferred by the British Columbia Crown. The Order of British Columbia, which evolved out of and replaced the earlier Order of the Dogwood, is intended to honour any current or former long time resident of British Columbia who has demonstrated a high level of individual excellence and achievement in any field, demonstrating the "greatest distinction and excell[ence] in any field of endeavour benefiting the people of the Province or elsewhere." Only those who are elected or appointed members of a governmental body are ineligible as long as they hold office. There are no limits on how many can belong to the order or be inducted at one time. The process of finding qualified individuals begins with submissions from the public to the Order of
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    Order of George I

    Order of George I

    The Royal Order of George I (Greek: Βασιλικόν Τάγμα Γεωργίου Α') is a defunct order of Greece. The order was founded in 1915 by King Constantine I in honor of his father, George I. It was only the second Greek order to be created after the Order of the Redeemer in 1833, and remained the second senior award of the Greek state for the duration of its existence. The order was closely associated with the Greek monarchy, and was hence abolished with the establishment of the Second Hellenic Republic in 1924, to be replaced with the Order of the Phoenix. The order was restored along with the monarchy in 1935, and continued to be awarded until the final abolition of the monarchy in 1973. It was replaced by the Third Hellenic Republic in 1975 by the Order of Honour. The Order has five classes: A sixth, supreme class comprising a Collar of the order was originally envisaged, but never realized. As the Order was restricted to officers and senior state officials, an additional Commemorative Medal of the Order of George I (Αναμνηστικόν μετάλλιον του Τάγματος Γεωργίου Α') was instituted in 1915 for NCOs and common soldiers, junior officials and ordinary citizens. It had initially two classes,
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    Order of Merit

    Order of Merit

    The Order of Merit (French: Ordre du Mérite) is a dynastic order recognising distinguished service in the armed forces, science, art, literature, or for the promotion of culture. Established in 1902 by King Edward VII, admission into the order remains the personal gift of its Sovereign, the reigning monarch of the Commonwealth realms, and is limited to 24 living recipients at one time from these countries plus a limited number of honorary members. While all members receive the ability to use the post-nominal letters OM and a medallion for life, the Order of Merit's precedence amongst other honours differs amongst Commonwealth realms. The first mention of a possible Order of Merit was made following the Battle of Trafalgar in 1805, in correspondence between First Lord of the Admiralty Lord Barham and William Pitt, though nothing eventuated from the idea. Later, it was thought by Queen Victoria, her courtiers, and politicians alike, that a new order, based on the Prussian order Pour le Mérite, would make up for the insufficient recognition offered by the established honours system to achievement outside of public service, in realms such as art, music, literature, industry, and
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    Order of Military Merit

    The Order of Military Merit (French: Ordre du mérite militaire) is a military honour for merit that is, within the Canadian system of honours, the second highest order administered by the Governor General-in-Council, on behalf of the Queen of Canada. Created in 1972 to replace a grouping within the Order of Canada, the three-tiered order was established to recognize members of the Canadian Forces— either regular or reserve personnel— who have demonstrated dedication and devotion beyond the call of duty, achieving conspicuous merit and exceptional military service. The Canadian monarch, seen as the fount of honour, is at the apex of the Order of Military Merit as its Sovereign, followed by the governor general, who serves as the fellowship's Chancellor, and the Chief of the Defence Staff, who is the Principal Commander. Thereafter follow three grades— each having accordant post-nominal letters that are the same in both English and French. There are no limits to the population of any grade, and promotions are possible, though this is ordinarily not done within five years of the initial appointment. Any person thus honoured must return their lower grade insignia, as no member may at
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    Order of Polonia Restituta

    Order of Polonia Restituta

    The Order of Polonia Restituta (Polish: Order Odrodzenia Polski, English: Order of Rebirth of Poland) is one of Poland's highest Orders. The Order can be conferred for outstanding achievements in the fields of education, science, sport, culture, art, economics, national defense, social work, civil service, or for furthering good relations between countries. It was established on February 4, 1921 and can be awarded to both civilians and soldiers, as well as to foreigners. The Order of Polonia Restituta is commonly believed to be the successor to the Order of the Knights of Saint Stanislaus, Bishop and Martyr (known simply as the Order of Saint Stanislaus) established by the last King of the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth – Stanisław August Poniatowski, to honor supporters of the Polish Crown. It was established on 7 May, 1765, its number fixed at a total of 100, and required the Knights a payment of fees that were donated to benefit the poor as well as adherence to various rules of chivalry. Due to the rising influence of the Russian Empire on Central European affairs the rules of awarding of the Order were broken. After the Partitions of Poland the Order was resurrected in the
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    Order of St. Patrick

    Order of St. Patrick

    The Most Illustrious Order of Saint Patrick is a British order of chivalry associated with Ireland. The Order was created in 1783 by George III. The regular creation of knights of Saint Patrick lasted until 1921, when most of Ireland became independent as the Irish Free State. While the Order technically still exists, no knight of St Patrick has been created since 1936, and the last surviving knight, Prince Henry, Duke of Gloucester, died in 1974. The Queen, however, remains the Sovereign of the Order, and one officer, the Ulster King of Arms (now combined with Norroy King of Arms), also survives. St Patrick is patron of the order; its motto is Quis separabit?, Latin for "Who will separate us?": an allusion to the Vulgate translation of Romans 8:35, "Who shall separate us from the love of Christ?" Most British orders of chivalry cover the entire kingdom, but the three most exalted ones each pertain to one constituent nation only. The Order of St Patrick, which pertains to Ireland, is the most junior of these three in precedence and age. Its equivalent in England, The Most Noble Order of the Garter, is the oldest order of chivalry in the United Kingdom, dating to the middle
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    Order of the Netherlands Lion

    Order of the Netherlands Lion

    The Order of the Netherlands Lion (Dutch: De Orde van de Nederlandse Leeuw, French: L'Ordre du Lion Néerlandais) is a Dutch order of chivalry founded by King William I of the Netherlands on 29 September 1815. The Order of the Netherlands Lion was until recently awarded upon eminent individuals from all walks of life, including generals, ministers of the crown, mayors of large towns, professors and leading scientists, industrialists, high ranking civil servants, presiding judges and renowned artists. It could therefore be considered the Dutch equivalent of the Order of the Bath. Since 1980 the Order has been primarily used to recognise merit in the arts, science, sport and literature; others have been awarded the Order of Orange Nassau instead. The Order ranks after the coveted Military Order of William, which is only awarded for military merit. Every year on the Queen's official birthday, April 30, several appointments in the Order are made public. The second and third class of the Order are not awarded to foreigners; they are eligible for the Order of Orange Nassau or the Order of the Crown instead. The Queen of the Netherlands is the Grand Master of the Order. The Order is issued
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    Royal Guelphic Order

    Royal Guelphic Order

    • Founders: George IV of the United Kingdom
    The Royal Guelphic Order, sometimes also referred to as the Hanoverian Guelphic Order, is a Hanoverian order of chivalry instituted on 28 April 1815 by the Prince Regent (later George IV). It has not been conferred by the British Crown since the death of King William IV in 1837, when the personal union of the United Kingdom and Hanover ended. It continued to be conferred by the Kingdom of Hanover as an independent state and subsequently, after the defeat and forced dissolution of the Kingdom of Hanover by the Kingdom of Prussia, the order continued as a house order to be awarded by the Royal House of Hanover. Today, its current chancellor is the Hanoverian head of the house, Ernst August, Prince of Hanover. The honour is named after the House of Guelph to which the Hanoverian kings belonged, and its insignia were based on the white horse of that kingdom's arms. The Order includes two Divisions, Civil and Military. It originally had three classes, but with several reorganizations since 1841, as house order today it has four classes and an additional Cross of Merit. In descending order of seniority, are: The Order has six officers: the Chancellor, the Vice-Chancellor, the Register,
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    Royal Victorian Order

    Royal Victorian Order

    • Category: Monarchical Order
    • Founders: Queen Victoria
    • Chivalric Titles: Commander of the Royal Victorian Order
    The Royal Victorian Order (French: Ordre royal de Victoria) is a dynastic order of knighthood recognising distinguished personal service to the order's Sovereign, the reigning monarch of the Commonwealth realms, any members of their family, or any of their viceroys. Established in 1896, the order's chapel is the Savoy Chapel, its official day is 20 June, and its motto is Victoria, alluding to the society's founder, Queen Victoria. There are no limits on the number of inductees, and admission remains the personal gift of the monarch, with each of the organisation's five hierarchical grades and one medal with three levels representing different levels of service. While all members receive the ability to use the prescribed styles of the order— the top two levels grant titles of knighthood, and all accord distinct post-nominal letters— the Royal Victorian Order's precedence amongst other honours differs from realm to realm, and admission to some grades may be barred by government policy. Though similarly named, the Royal Victorian Order is not related to the Royal Victorian Chain. Prior to the close of the 19th century, most general honours within the British Empire were bestowed by
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    Order of Merit of the Italian Republic

    • Founders: Luigi Einaudi
    • Chivalric Titles: Grande Ufficiale OMRI
    The Order of Merit of the Italian Republic (Italian: Ordine al merito della Repubblica Italiana) was founded as the senior order of knighthood by the second President of the Italian Republic, Luigi Einaudi in 1951. The highest ranking honour of the Republic, it is awarded for "merit acquired by the nation" in the fields of literature, the arts, economy, public service, and social, philanthropic and humanitarian activities and for long and conspicuous service in civilian and military careers. The post-nominal letters for the order are OMRI. The order effectively replaced as national orders the Civil Order of Savoy (1831), the Order of the Crown of Italy (1868), the Order of Saints Maurice and Lazarus (1572) and the Supreme Order of the Most Holy Annunciation (1362), which the sovereign, as Grand Master, did not abdicate on the abolition of the monarchy and continues to award in exile as fons honorum. Today, these continue merely as dynastic orders of the former Royal House of Savoy. Whilst their bestowal is suppressed by law in Italy, the continued use of those decorations conferred prior to 1951 is permitted, exclusive of any right of precedence in official ceremonies. Investiture
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    Order of Adolphe of Nassau

    Order of Adolphe of Nassau

    The Civil and Military Order of Merit of Adolphe of Nassau (French: Ordre du Mérite Civil et Militaire d'Adolphe de Nassau) was originally founded as a chivalric order of the Duchy of Nassau by Adolphe of Nassau in 1858 in honor of his namesake and ancestor, Adolf, Count of Nassau-Weilburg, the only member of the House of Nassau to have been King of Germany. After the duchy was annexed by Prussia in 1866 and Adolphe became Grand Duke of Luxembourg in 1890, he revived the order as an order of merit of the Grand Duchy of Luxembourg. The award recognises those persons that have performed meritorious actions or heroic deeds in the name of Luxembourg. The Order consists of eight grades, with two crosses and three medals attached to the order: Members belong to either the Civil or the Military Division. The Grand Duke of Luxembourg is the Grand Master of the Order. The Order of Adolphe of Nassau may also be issued to foreigners and is common as a diplomatic order. The decoration was issued as well in World War II to a handful of Allied officers who had helped liberate Luxembourg from the rule of Nazi Germany. Because of the small size of Luxembourg, and its minor role as a campaign
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    Order of Charles XIII

    Order of Charles XIII

    The Order of Charles XIII (Swedish: Carl XIII:s orden) is a Swedish order of knighthood, founded by King Charles XIII in 1811. The Lord and Master of the Order is the King of Sweden, currently His Majesty King Carl XVI Gustaf. The order can only be conferred on Freemasons of the Protestant faith. The membership of the order comprises: There can never be more than 33 persons who have the order at the same time. (Men of royal blood are additional). The insignia consists of a red St George cross, in the centre a white globe with the monogram of the institutor, two opposite letters C surrounding XIII, in gold. On the reverse the globe has the letter B in gold in an equilateral black and gold edged triangle. The cross is surmounted by a closed golden crown. The insignia is worn around the neck in a red ribbon. The order uses a knight's gown, introduced 1822, and new knights are dubbed.
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    Order of Saint Michael of the Wing

    Order of Saint Michael of the Wing

    The Order of Saint Michael of the Wing (Portuguese: Ordem de São Miguel da Ala) is a Portuguese order of knighthood with long history. Depending on the source consulted, the order existed only briefly in the 12th century, lasted until it fell into disuse in 1732, survived until 1910, was revived as a new order at some point in the 19th century, and again revived 1986. Unlike many other Portuguese orders, it has not been nationalized as a decoration of the state by the post-1910 Portuguese Republic. Duarte Pio, Duke of Braganza, pretender to the Portuguese throne is Grand Master of the revived order and Judge of the associated Royal Brotherhood. The order was founded by King Afonso I of Portugal to honour a group of knights of the Order of Saint James of the Sword from the Kingdom of León who assisted him in retaking Santarém from the Moors on the Feast of Saint Michael, May 8, 1147. Originally, the order was formed from members of the Military Order of Saint James, thus the reason why it maintains on its Coat of Arms the red sword of this Order accompanied at the blade by two fleurs de lis representing the Cistercian Rule its members observed at the Royal Abbey of Alcobaça where
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    Order of the Blessed Virgin Mary of Mercy

    Order of the Blessed Virgin Mary of Mercy

    • Category: Military order
    The Royal, Celestial and Military Order of Our Lady of Mercy and the Redemption of the Captives also known as Our Lady of Ransom (Latin: Ordo Beatae Mariae de Mercede redemptionis captivorum) is a Roman Catholic religious order established in 1218 by St. Peter Nolasco in the city of Barcelona, at that time in the Kingdom of Aragon, for the redemption of Christian captives. One of the distinguishing marks of the Order of the Blessed Virgin Mary of Mercy is that, since its foundation, its members are required to take a Fourth Vow to die for another who is in danger of losing their Faith. The Order exists today in 17 countries. The Order of the Blessed Virgin Mary of Mercy (or the Order of Merced, O.Merc., Mercedarians, the Order of Captives, or the Order of Our Lady of Ransom) was one of many dozens of associations that sprang up in Europe during the 12th and 13th centuries as institutions of charitable works. The work of the Mercedarians was in ransoming impoverished captive Christians (slaves) held in Muslim hands, especially along the frontier that the Crown of Aragon shared with al-Andalus (Muslim Spain). Starting before the First Crusade, many hospices and hospitals were
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    Order of the Chrysanthemum

    Order of the Chrysanthemum

    • Category: Japanese Order
    • Founders: Emperor Meiji
    The Supreme Order of the Chrysanthemum (大勲位菊花章, Dai-kun'i kikka-shō, literally Grand Order of the Badge of the Chrysanthemums) is Japan's highest order. The Grand Cordon of the Order was established in 1876 by Emperor Meiji of Japan; the collar of the Order was added on January 4, 1888. Although technically the order has only one class, it can either be awarded "with collar," meaning on a chain, or "with grand cordon," accompanied by a sash. Unlike its European counterparts, the order may be conferred posthumously. The collar of the order is awarded only posthumously, except for the reigning emperor, who automatically holds the rank. Exceptions are made for foreign heads of state, who can be awarded the collar as a sign of friendship. The grand cordon is the highest possible honor a Japanese citizen can be awarded during his lifetime. Aside from the imperial household, only three grand cordons have been awarded to living citizens and eleven to the deceased. The badge of the order is a four-pointed gilt badge with white enameled rays; the center bears a red enameled sun disc. On each of the four corners of the badge there is a yellow-enameled chrysanthemum blossom with green
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    Order of the Crown of Thailand

    The Most Noble Order of the Crown of Thailand (Thai: เครื่องราชอิสริยาภรณ์อันมีเกียรติยศยิ่งมงกุฎไทย; RTGS: Khrueang Ratcha Itsariyaphon An Mi Kiattiyot Ying Mongkut Thai) is a Thai order, established in 1869 by King Rama V of The Kingdom of Siam (now Thailand) for Thais, Royal Family, Government Employees, and Foreign Dignitaries for their outstanding services to the Kingdom of Thailand. The order originally had 7 classes. The special class was added by King Rama VI in 1918. The Order consists of eight classes: First Class:
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    Order of the Redeemer

    Order of the Redeemer

    The Order of the Redeemer (Greek: Τάγμα του Σωτήρος), also known as the Order of the Savior, is an order of Greece. The Order of the Redeemer is the oldest and highest decoration awarded by the modern Greek state. The establishment of the Order of the Redeemer was decided by the Fourth National Assembly at Argos in 1829, during the Greek War of Independence. The award bears the name Redeemer due to the Assembly's belief that the Greek nation was reborn through divine assistance. The relevant Decree was signed in Nafplio by King Otto of Greece on May 20, 1833. From that date onwards, the insignia of the Order were conferred on Greeks and foreigners alike who were distinguished during the struggle for independence. Among those who were first awarded the Grand Cross of the Order of the Redeemer were King Ludwig I of Bavaria, the father of King Otto of Greece, in 1833; Andreas Miaoulis in 1835, Baron Guenther Heinrich von Berg on 21 February 1837 Petrobey Mavromichalis, Alexandros Mavrokordatos and Lazaros Kountouriotis in 1836, Andreas Zaimis, Theodoros Kolokotronis and Georgios Kountouriotis in 1837, and Constantine Kanaris in 1864. Currently, the ranks of the Order of the Redeemer
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    Order of the White Eagle

    Order of the White Eagle

    Order of the White Eagle was a Royal Order in the Kingdom of Serbia (1883–1918) and the Kingdom of Yugoslavia (1918–1945). King Milan I of Serbia instituted the Order of the White Eagle on 23 January 1883, concurrently with the Order of St. Sava. The Order had five classes and was conferred on Serbian and Yugoslav citizens for achievements in peace or war, or for special merits to the Crown, the state and nation. In the period between 1883 and 1898 Order of the White Eagle was the highest award in the Kingdom of Serbia. In 1898 the Royal Order of Miloš the Great took precedence over the White Eagle and in 1904 the former was replaced by the Order of the Karađorđe's Star. After his accession to the throne in 1903, King Peter I of Serbia continued awarding the Order of the White Eagle, but the reverse of the medallion had the year of the proclamation of the Kingdom (1883) instead of the cipher of Milan I. The white eagle with wings displayed was re-established as the State Arms of Serbia, symbol descended from the Emperors of Byzantium. The order had a War Merit Division, with crossed swords between the Royal Crown and eagle's heads, that was introduced in 1915, and conferred for
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    145
    Jehova Order

    Jehova Order

    • Founders: Charles IX of Sweden
    King Charles IX of Sweden instituted the Royal Order of Jehova in 1606. The collar of this order of knighthood was worn by the king alone. There is a report that three Swedish princes wore a collar at the coronation of Charles IX in the 15th. of March 1606. The king's motto was Jehovah solatium meum or in Swedish Gud är min tröst.
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    146
    Order of Christ

    Order of Christ

    The Imperial Order of Our Lord Jesus Christ (Portuguese: Imperial Ordem de Nosso Senhor Jesus Cristo), simply named Order of Christ, is an order of chivalry instituted by emperor Pedro I of Brazil on 7 December 1822, on the basis of the Portuguese Order of Christ founded by King Dom Dinis and Pope John XXII in 1316-1319. Knights of the Order of Christ were part of the untitled nobility of the Empire of Brazil. The order was awarded for exceptional services that resulted in notable and proven utility to religion (Roman Catholicism), to humanity and the state. On 22 March 1890, the order was cancelled as national order by the interim government of United States of Brazil. However, since the deposition in 1889 of the last Brazilian monarch, Emperor Pedro II, the order is claimed as an house order being awarded by the Heads of the House of Orleans-Braganza, pretenders to the defunct throne of Brazil. The current Brazilian Imperial Family is split into two branches Petrópolis and Vassouras, and the Grand Mastership of the Order is disputed between those two branches. After the Independence of Brazil emperor Dom Pedro I continued his inherent authority as the “fount of honors”
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    147
    Order of Léopold

    Order of Léopold

    The Order of Leopold (Leopoldsorde in Dutch, Ordre de Léopold in French) is one of the three (current) Belgian national honorary orders of knighthood. It is the highest order of Belgium and is named in honour of King Leopold I. It consists of a military, a maritime and a civilian division. The maritime division is only awarded to personnel of the merchant navy, and the military division to military personnel. The decoration was established on 11 July 1832 and is awarded for extreme bravery in combat or for meritorious service of immense benefit to the Belgian nation. The Order of Leopold is awarded by Royal Decree. During the Second World War, the Order of Leopold was bestowed on the several officers of foreign militaries who had helped to liberate Belgium from the occupation of German forces. Famous recipients include George S. Patton, Bernard Montgomery, Dwight Eisenhower, and Wesley Clark. The medal was also granted to Josip Broz Tito in 1970. Membership can only be granted by his majesty, King Albert II and is reserved to the very most important Belgian nationals and to some distinguished foreign persons who contributed in one way to the Belgian military, the Belgian civil
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    148

    Order of Sant Jordi d'Alfama

    • Category: Military order
    Knights of St. George (in Catalan, Sant Jordi d'Alfama) appear at different historical periods and in different countries as mutually independent bodies having nothing in common but the veneration of Saint George, the patron saint of knighthood. St. George of Lydda, a martyr of the persecution of Diocletian in the fourth century, is one of those military saints whom Byzantine iconography represented as a horseman armed cap-à-pie, like the flower of the Roman armies after the military reform of Justinian I in the sixth century. The pilgrim knights of Europe, encountering in the East these representations of St. George, recognized their own accoutrements and at once adopted him as the patron of their noble calling. This popularity of St. George in the West gave rise to numerous associations both secular and religious. Among secular orders of this name which still exist must be mentioned the English Order of the Garter, which has always had St. George for its patron. The Kingdom of Aragon was placed under his patronage, and in gratitude for his assistance to its armies King Peter II of Aragon founded (1201) the Order of St. George of Alfama in the district of that name. Nevertheless
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    149
    Order of St. Vladimir

    Order of St. Vladimir

    The Cross of Saint Vladimir (Russian: Орден Святого Владимира) was an Imperial Russian Order established in 1782 by Empress Catherine II in memory of the deeds of Saint Vladimir, the Grand Prince and the Baptizer of the Kievan Rus. Motto - "Benefit, Honor and Glory". The order had four degrees and was awarded for continuous civil and military service. The color of the order ribbon is red with a black border. First class of the order - A red cross with black and golden borders. The badge of the Order depended from a sash worn over the right shoulder, and a gold-and-silver eight-rayed star was fastened on the left chest. Second class - The red cross on the neck and the star on the left chest. Third class - The red cross of a smaller size on the neck. Fourth class - The same on the left chest. Badge: A red enamelled cross pattée with black enamelled borders, and a black enamelled central disc bearing a crowned red and ermine mantle with the monogram of St. Vladimir. Worn on a sash by the first degree, on a necklet by the second and third degrees, and on a chest ribbon by the fourth degree. Star: A four-pointed star superimposed upon a four-pointed gold star, with a golden cross pattée
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    150

    Order of the Oak Crown

    The Order of the Oak Crown (French: Ordre de la couronne de Chêne) is an Order of the Grand Duchy of Luxembourg. The Order of the Oak Crown was instituted by the Grand Duke-King William II, in 1841. At that time, the Grand Duchy of Luxembourg and the Kingdom of the Netherlands were in personal union; although the Order was technically a Luxembourgian award, it was often used by William II and his successor, Grand Duke-King William III, as a house order to reward Dutch subjects, beyond the control of the Dutch government. William II conferred the order on fewer than 30 recipients. His successor, William III, liked the ability to confer this Order on his sole discretion, and awarded 300 decorations on the day of his coronation alone. In the following years hundreds of additional awards of the Order were made. Indeed, there were so many recipients in the Netherlands itself that the Order was widely regarded as a Dutch decoration. The Order of the Oak Crown ceased to be awarded to Dutch subjects in 1890, when Queen Wilhelmina, as the only remaining member of the House of Orange-Nassau, succeeded her father as the Queen of the Netherlands. Since the Erneuter Erbverein, the house-treaty
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    151
    Order of the Pleiades

    Order of the Pleiades

    The Order of the Pleiades (Persian: نشان هفتپیکر‎ Nishân-i-Haftpaykar), also named Order of Haft Paykar, was an all-female order of the former Imperial State of Iran. The Order was instituted not later than January 1955 by the last Shah of Iran, Mohammad Reza Pahlavi. It consisted of three classes (1st class, 2nd class, and 3rd class), and was awarded to female persons of high status, for deserving special recognition or conspicuous appreciation by the Shah. The order was abolished by the Islamic Republic of Iran after the fall of the last Shah. Since then, the order merely continues as a Royal Family Order, and Empress Farah Pahlavi, the third wife and widow of Shah Mohammad Reza Pahlavi, is still the grandmaster of this order. The reason and purpose of establishing of this Order remains still unclear since the Pahlavis had already established in 1939 an all-female Order (known since 1967 under the name of the Order of Aryamehr). It is believed that the Order honours Soraya Esfandiary-Bakhtiari, the second wife of the former Shah Mohammad Reza Pahlavi. The name of the order refers to the Pleiades, a star cluster located in the constellation Taurus in the northern hemisphere.
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    152
    Order of Vasa

    Order of Vasa

    • Founders: Gustav III of Sweden
    The Royal Order of Vasa (Kungliga Vasaorden) was a Swedish Royal order of chivalry, awarded to citizens of Sweden for service to state and society especially in the fields of agriculture, mining and commerce. It was instituted on 29 May 1772 by King Gustav III of Sweden. It was unrestricted by birth or education and could therefore be awarded to anyone (as opposed to the Order of the Polar Star, which was intended as a reward for the learned professions). It was the most junior of all the Swedish orders. It was often awarded to Norwegian subjects of the dual monarchy until Oscar I founded the Norwegian Order of St. Olav in 1847. Since 1974 the order is no longer conferred: officially it has been declared an order in "resting", along with the Order of the Sword. The Order had five classes: Additionally, the Badge of Vasa and the Medal of Vasa, were both worn on a ribbon on the left chest.
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    153
    Order of Saint Louis

    Order of Saint Louis

    • Founders: Louis XIV of France
    The Royal and Military Order of Saint Louis (French: Ordre Royal et Militaire de Saint-Louis) was a military Order of Chivalry founded on 5 April 1693 by Louis XIV and named after Saint Louis (Louis IX). It was intended as a reward for exceptional officers, and is notable as the first decoration that could be granted to non-nobles. It is a predecessor of the Légion d'honneur (Legion of Honour), with which it shares the red ribbon (though the Légion d'honneur is awarded to military personnel and civilians alike). The King was the Grand Master of the order, and the Dauphin was automatically a member as well. The Order had three classes: The entire order included 8 Grand Crosses, 28 Commanders and a variable number of Knights. Officers of the Order included, after the Grand Master, a Trésorier (Treasurer), a Greffier (Registrar) and a Huissier (Gentleman Usher). The badge of the order consisted of a portrait of Saint Louis surrounded by the motto « LUD(OVICUS) M(AGNUS) IN(STITUIT) 1693 » ("Louis the Great instituted it in 1693"). The reverse features a sword interlaced with a laurel crown and a white sash, with the inscription « BELL(ICAE) VIRTUTIS PRAEM(IUM) » ("reward of wartime
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    154
    Colonial Order of the Star of Italy

    Colonial Order of the Star of Italy

    • Founders: Victor Emmanuel III of Italy
    The Colonial Order of the Star of Italy (Italian: Ordine coloniale della Stella d'Italia) was founded as a colonial order of knighthood on 18 June 1914 by King Victor Emmanuel III, to reward soldiers deployed to the colony of Libya. The order had fallen into abeyance by 1943, when Allied forces re-took the colonies of Italian North Africa. The various degrees of the order, with limits to their number, were as follows:
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    155
    House Order of Hohenzollern

    House Order of Hohenzollern

    The House Order of Hohenzollern (Hausorden von Hohenzollern or Hohenzollernscher Hausorden) was an order of chivalry of the House of Hohenzollern awarded to military commissioned officers and civilians of comparable status. Associated with the various versions of the order were crosses and medals which could be awarded to lower-ranking soldiers and civilians. The House Order of Hohenzollern was instituted on December 5, 1841 by joint decree of Prince Konstantin of Hohenzollern-Hechingen and Prince Karl Anton of Hohenzollern-Sigmaringen. These two principalities in southern Germany were Catholic collateral lines of the House of Hohenzollern, cousins to the Protestant ruling house of Prussia. On August 23, 1851, after the two principalities had been annexed by Prussia, the order was adopted by the Prussian branch of the house. Also, although the two principalities had become an administrative region of the Prussian kingdom, the princely lines continued to award the order as a house order. The Prussian version was then known as the Royal House Order of Hohenzollern (Königlicher Hausorden von Hohenzollern or Königlich Hohenzollernscher Hausorden), to distinguish it from the Princely
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    156
    Knight Bachelor

    Knight Bachelor

    The rank of Knight Bachelor (Kt) is a part of the British honours system. It is the most basic rank of a man who has been knighted by the monarch but not as a member of one of the organised Orders of Chivalry. Knights Bachelor are the most ancient sort of British knight (the rank existed during the 13th century reign of King Henry III), but Knights Bachelor rank below knights of the various orders. There is no female counterpart; women deserving an honour of this rank are appointed Dames Commander of the Order of the British Empire (DBE) instead. It is generally awarded for public service; amongst its recipients are all male judges of the High Court of England and Wales. It is possible to be a Knight Bachelor and a junior member of an order of chivalry without being a knight of that order; this situation has become rather common, especially among those recognised for achievements in entertainment. For instance, Sir Elton John, Sir Bruce Forsyth, Sir Tom Stoppard and Sir Christopher Lee are Commanders of the Order of the British Empire (CBE), Sir Terry Pratchett and Sir Patrick Stewart Officers of the Order of the British Empire (OBE), and Sir Paul McCartney is a Member of the Order
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    157

    Nishan-i-Imtiaz

    The Nishan-i-Imtiaz (Urdu: نشان امتیاز, English: Order of Excellence) is one of the state organized civil decorations of State of Pakistan. It is the highest honor — along with comparable to optimum award Nishan-e-Pakistan — given to any civilian in Pakistan based on their achievements that caused the world recognition for Pakistan or/ done a outstanding service for the country. The award is not limited to citizens of Pakistan and, while it is a civilian award, it can also be awarded to military personnel and worn on the uniform. Nishan, translates as Decoration/Order, is a highly restricted and prestigious award roughly equivalent to Presidential Medal of Freedom (United States) and Order of the British Empire (United Kingdom), and is the first category award of Order of Imtiaz. The other three descending categories are Hilal-i-Imtiaz, Sitara-i-Imtiaz and Tamgha-e-Imtiaz. Usually, it is regarded as the highest award one can achieve in Pakistan since the optimum award Nishan-e-Pakistan is awarded only to foreign Heads of States. The award was established in March 19, 1957, following the proclamation of State of Pakistan as Parliamentary republic, by the 1956 Constitution. The award
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    2 votes
    158

    Order of Prince Edward Island

    The Order of Prince Edward Island is a civilian honour for merit in the Canadian province of Prince Edward Island. Instituted in 1996 by Lieutenant Governor Gilbert Clements, on the advice of the Cabinet under Premier Catherine Callbeck, the order is administered by the Governor-in-Council and is intended to honour current or former Prince Edward Island residents for conspicuous achievements in any field, being thus described as the highest honour amongst all others conferred by the Prince Edward Island Crown. The Order of Prince Edward Island is intended to honour any current or former long time resident of Prince Edward Island who has demonstrated a high level of individual excellence and achievement in any field, having made "remarkable contributions to the social, economic and cultural life of [Prince Edward Island] and its people." Although Canadian citizenship is not a requirement, those who are elected or appointed members of a governmental body are ineligible as long as they hold office, and only three people per year may be inducted into the order. The process of finding qualified individuals begins with submissions from the public to the Advisory Council of the Order of
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    2 votes
    159
    Order of Saint Lazarus

    Order of Saint Lazarus

    • Category: Military order
    The Military and Hospitaller Order of Saint Lazarus of Jerusalem (Ordo Militaris et Hospitalis Sancti Lazari Hierosolymitani) is an order of chivalry originally founded at a leper hospital in 1098 by the crusaders of the Latin Kingdom of Jerusalem. It was established to treat leprosy, its knights originally being lepers themselves. It is one of the less-known and less-documented orders. From its foundation in the 11th century, members of the Order of Saint Lazarus were dedicated to two ideals: aid to those suffering from the disease of leprosy and the defense of the Christian faith. The first mention of the order in surviving sources was in 1142. The order was initially founded as a leper hospital outside the city walls of Jerusalem, but hospitals were established all across the Holy Land dependant on the Jerusalem hospital, notably in Acre. It is unknown when the order became militarised but militarisation occurred before the end of the twelfth century due to the large numbers of Templars and Hospitallers sent to the leper hospitals to be treated. The order established ‘Lazar houses’ across Europe to care for lepers, and was well supported by other military orders which compelled
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    160
    Order of Saint Peter of Cetinje

    Order of Saint Peter of Cetinje

    • Category: Monarchical Order
    • Founders: Nicholas I of Montenegro
    The Order of Saint Peter of Cetinje (Montenegrin: Орден Светог Петра, Orden Svetog Petra) is the first dynastic of the Royal House of Petrović-Njegoš. The Order was introduced by King Nikola I of Montenegro in 1869. It is sometimes said that this order was actually introduced much earlier by Prince-Bishop (Vladika) Peter II Petrović-Njegoš. The Order is bestowed upon prominent members of the Petrović-Njegoš family, as well as to prominent foreign citizens, and is currently held by all four Princes and Princesses of the Royal House. The name of Prince Danilo, the first Montenegrin ruler with a purely secular title, is inscribed on the Decoration. This is often attributed to the fact that the Order was a prototype for the other dynastic Order of Prince Danilo I. The Order was named after the Patron Saint of the Montenegrin Orthodox Church, Prince-Bishop (Vladika) Peter I Petrović, the person who effectively obtained independence for Montenegro, and to whom is attributed the creation of the modern Montengrin State. The Order of Saint Peter is the House Order of the Royal House of Montenegro. The Order consists of a single class, and is normally reserved for members of the Royal Family
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    161
    Order of Saint Stanislaus

    Order of Saint Stanislaus

    The Order of Saint Stanislaus (Polish: Order św. Stanisława Biskupa Męczennika, Russian: Орден Святого Станислава), also spelled Stanislas, was an Order in the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth and the Kingdom of Poland between 1765 and 1831 and of the Russian Empire from 1831 to 1917. Stanisław August Poniatowski, King of Poland, established the Order of the Knights of Saint Stanislaus, Bishop and Martyr on May 8, 1765 to honor the service to the King. Initially, the order was limited to 100 members who were required to prove four generations of nobility. After the partition of Poland it was recognized in the Grand Duchy of Warsaw in 1807. Since 1815 in the Polish (Congress) Kingdom, the Order, originally in a single class, was retained and divided into four classes. At 25 January 1831 Polish Parliament deposed tsar Nicholas I of Russia (also grand master of this Polish Order) from the throne of Poland. After the downfall of the November Uprising the Imperial House of Romanov created the Royal and Imperial Order of Saint Stanislaus and added it to the awards system of the Russian Empire in 1832, where it remained until 1917. The order was abolished with the fall of the Romanovs in
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    162
    Order of the Red Banner of Labour

    Order of the Red Banner of Labour

    The Order of the Red Banner of Labour (Russian: Орден Трудового Красного Знамени) was an order of the Soviet Union established to honour great deeds and services to the Soviet state and society in the fields of production, science, culture, literature, the arts, education, health, social and other spheres of labour activities. It is the labour counterpart of the military Order of the Red Banner. A few institutions and factories, being the pride of Soviet Union, also received the order. The Order of the Red Banner of Labour began solely as an award of the Russian SFSR on December 28, 1920. The all-Union equivalent was established by Decree of the Presidium of the Supreme Soviet on September 7, 1928 and approved by another decree on September 15, 1928. The Order's statute and regulations were modified by multiple successive decrees of the Presidium of the Supreme Soviet of the USSR, on May 7, 1936, on June 19, 1943, on March 28, 1980, and on July 18, 1980. The Order of the Red Banner of Labour can be awarded to citizens of the USSR, to businesses, associations, institutions, organizations, and allied autonomous republics, territories, autonomous regions, districts, cities and other
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    163

    Order of the Star and Key of the Indian Ocean

    The Most Distinguished Order of the Star and Key of the Indian Ocean is the highest distinct order of merit in Mauritius. It was founded in 1992 to decorate people who have made a contribution to social progress in the nations of the Indian Ocean. It may be awarded to non-Mauritian citizens. The chancellor of the order is the President of the Republic Of Mauritius. Each year on Independence day (12th March) the president of the republic appoints new members on the recommendation of the prime minister. Labour Day has a special significance to the order as it relates to the hardship of people working for their country. On Labour Day 2007 the Malagasy President Marc Ramalomanana was appointed to the rank of Grand Commander, the highest rank of the order. Recipients of the rank of Grand Officer or above are automatically entitled to prefix The Hon, Hons or The Honourable to their name. Commanders and Officers may request permission from the president to use this prefix. Recipients of the order who are not Mauritian citizens may not use the prefix or post-nominals unless granted permission by the president. The Order comprises five classes, in descending order of
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    164
    Beatrix of the Netherlands

    Beatrix of the Netherlands

    Beatrix (Beatrix Wilhelmina Armgard, Dutch pronunciation: [ˈbeːjaˌtrɪks ˌʋɪlɦɛlˈmina ˈɑrmɣɑrt] ( listen); born 31 January 1938) is the Queen regnant of the Kingdom of the Netherlands comprising the Netherlands, Curaçao, Sint Maarten, and Aruba. Beatrix was born in Baarn, the Netherlands. She is the eldest daughter of Queen Juliana of the Netherlands and Prince Bernhard of Lippe-Biesterfeld. In 1948, she became heiress presumptive to the throne of the Netherlands. When her mother Juliana abdicated on 30 April 1980, Beatrix succeeded her as Queen of the Netherlands. She attended public primary and secondary schools in Canada, during World War II, and in the Netherlands. In 1961, she received her law degree from Leiden University. In 1966, Beatrix married Claus van Amsberg, with whom she had three children: Prince Willem-Alexander (1967), Prince Friso (1968) and Prince Constantijn (1969). Her husband Prince Claus died in 2002. Queen Beatrix is the oldest reigning monarch of the Netherlands. Beatrix was born Princess Beatrix Wilhelmina Armgard of the Netherlands, Princess of Orange-Nassau, Princess of Lippe-Biesterfeld, on 31 January 1938 at the Soestdijk Palace in Baarn, the
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    165
    Order of Canada

    Order of Canada

    • Chivalric Titles: Member of the Order of Canada
    The Order of Canada (French: Ordre du Canada) is a Canadian national order, admission into which is, within the system of orders, decorations, and medals of Canada, the second highest honour for merit. It comes second only to membership in the Order of Merit, which is within the personal gift of Canada's monarch. To coincide with the centennial of Canadian Confederation, the three-tiered order was established in 1967 as a fellowship that recognizes the achievement of outstanding merit or distinguished service by Canadians who made a major difference to Canada through lifelong contributions in every field of endeavour, as well as the efforts made by non-Canadians who have made the world better by their actions. Membership is thus accorded to those who exemplify the order's Latin motto, desiderantes meliorem patriam, meaning "they desire a better country", a phrase taken from Hebrews 11:16 of the Bible The three tiers of the order are Companion, Officer, and Member. The order is administered by the Governor General-in-Council on behalf of the Queen of Canada. The monarch, at present Elizabeth II, is Sovereign of the order and the serving governor general, currently David Lloyd
    6.00
    3 votes
    166
    Order of Vytautas the Great

    Order of Vytautas the Great

    The Order of Vytautas the Great is the Lithuanian Presidential Award. It may be conferred on the heads of Lithuania and foreign states, as well as their citizens, for distinguished services to the State of Lithuania. The Order was instituted in 1930 to commemorate the 500th anniversary of the death of the Lithuanian Grand Duke Vytautas the Great. The badge of the Order, struck in pre-war Lithuania, was designed by a Lithuanian artist, Jonas Burba. The insignia of the Order issued today are of the same design. The Order of Vytautas the Great has five classes: The insignia of the Grand Cross consists of the Grand Cross, Star and sash. The Grand Cross is 50mm wide. It is made from gold and covered with white enamel. On the front of the Cross a rider is depicted against a background of a red shield. The same shield, with a V (to signify the name Vytautas) in the middle is on the reverse of the Cross. Above the shield is the Grand Crown of the Duke. On the edges of the Cross are the dates of Vytautas the Great's rule (1392–1430). The reverse of the Cross features a golden Royal Crown embellished with three crystal stones. The Star measures 85mm, and is made from gold. It has nine sides.
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    167

    Ordre du Croissant

    • Founders: René I of Naples
    The Ordre du Croissant (Order of the Crescent; Italian - Ordine della Luna Crescente) was a chivalric order founded by Charles I of Naples and Sicily in 1268. It was revived in 1448 or 1464 by René I, king of Jerusalem, Sicily and Aragon (including parts of Provence), to provide him with a rival to the English Order of the Garter. René was one of the champions of the medieval system of chivalry and knighthood, and this new order was (like its English rival) neo-Arthurian in character. Its insignia consisted of a golden crescent moon engraved in grey with the word LOZ, with a chain of 3 gold loops above the crescent. On René's death, the Order lapsed.
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    168

    Alberta Order of Excellence

    The Alberta Order of Excellence is a civilian honour for merit in the Canadian province of Alberta. Instituted in 1979 when Lieutenant Governor Frank C. Lynch-Staunton granted Royal Assent to the Alberta Order of Excellence Act, the order is administered by the Governor-in-Council and is intended to honour current or former Alberta residents for conspicuous achievements in any field, being thus described as the highest honour amongst all others conferred by the Alberta Crown. The Alberta Order of Excellence is intended to honour any current or former long-time resident of Alberta who has demonstrated a high level of individual excellence and achievement in any field, having "rendered service of the greatest distinction and of singular excellence for or on behalf of the residents of Alberta." Canadian citizenship is a requirement, and those who are elected or appointed members of a governmental body are ineligible as long as they hold office. Only 10 people may be inducted each year, though a nomination may remain up for consideration by the council for seven years. The process of finding qualified individuals begins with submissions from the public to the Council of the Alberta
    5.67
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    169

    Order of Carol I

    The Order of Carol I is a chivalric order of the Kingdom of Romania instituted on the 10 May 1909 by King Carol I of Romania to celebrate his jubilee of 40 years of reign. Until the fall of the monarchy in 1947, the order was the highest ranking order of the kingdom. Currently it is awarded as a dynastic order by the head of the Romanian Royal Family, King Michael I of Romania. The order has only the superior classes, each of them with limited numbers:
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    3 votes
    170
    Order of the Lithuanian Grand Duke Gediminas

    Order of the Lithuanian Grand Duke Gediminas

    The Order of the Lithuanian Grand Duke Gediminas is the Lithuanian Presidential Award which was re-instituted to honour the citizens of Lithuania for outstanding performance in civil and public offices. Foreign nationals may also be awarded this Order. The Order of the Lithuanian Grand Duke Gediminas was instituted in 1928. It features the Columns of Gediminas, one of the national symbols of Lithuania. The Order of the Lithuanian Grand Duke Gediminas has five classes: The first five persons awarded the Order of the Lithuanian Grand Duke Gediminas after the restoration of the Independent State of Lithuania were poets Justinas Marcinkevičius, Bernardas Brazdžionis, priest Ričardas Mikutavičius, painter Vytautas Kazimieras Jonynas and mathematician Jonas Kubilius. The foreigner recipients of the Order include the former President of the International Olympic Committee, Juan Antonio Samaranch, philanthropist George Soros, General James L. Jones, prominent cellist Mstislav Rostropovich, Ambassador and Permanent Delegate of the Republic of Lithuania to UNESCO Ina Marciulionyte and others.
    5.67
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    171

    Order of the Stoat

    • Category: Monarchical Order
    • Founders: John V, Duke of Brittany
    The order of the Stoat is a Chivalric order founded by John V, Duke of Brittany in 1381.  It was one of the first Orders of Chivalry to accept women as members.
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    172
    Order of Charles III

    Order of Charles III

    The Royal and Distinguished Spanish Order of Charles III (Spanish: Real y Distinguida Orden Española de Carlos III) was established by the King of Spain Carlos III by means of the Royal Decree of 19 September 1771, with the motto Virtuti et mérito. Its objective is to reward people for their actions in benefit to Spain and the Crown. Since its creation, it has been the most distinguished civil award that can be granted in Spain, despite its categorisation as a military order. The Order was formally converted to a civil order in 1847 and later regulated by an Order of 8 May 2000 and also in a Royal Decree of 2002, in which was set the objective of "rewarding the citizens who, with their effort, initiative and work, have brought a distinguished and extraordinary service to the Nation". Today the Grand Master of the order is King Juan Carlos I of Spain. The Grand Cross of the Order of Charles III is reserved for those who, having completed relevant service to Spain, having been Presidents of the Congress of Deputies, the Senate, the Constitutional Court of the Supreme Judicial Council, the Supreme Court, Ministers or other senior officials of the state. The maximum number of Grand
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    173

    Order of Liberty

    The Order of Liberty, or Freedom, (Portuguese: Ordem da Liberdade) is a Portuguese honorific civil order that distinguishes relevant services to the cause of democracy and freedom, in the defense of the values of civilization and human dignity. The order was created in 1976, after the Carnation Revolution of 1974 in which the quasi-fascist authoritarian Estado Novo regime of António de Oliveira Salazar and Marcello Caetano was deposed . The Grand Collar can also be given by the President of Portugal to former Heads of State and others whose deeds are of an extraordinary nature and particular relevance to Portugal, to making them worthy of such distinction. The order includes five classes; in decreasing order of seniority, these are: Like the other Portuguese orders, the title of Honorary Member (Membro Honorário—MHL) can be awarded to institutions and locals.
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    174
    Order of Santiago

    Order of Santiago

    • Category: Military order
    • Founders: Alfonso VIII of Castile
    The Order of Santiago (Galician: Orde de Santiago, Spanish: Orden de Santiago) was founded in the 12th century, and owes its name to the national patron of Galicia and Spain, Santiago (St. James the Greater), under whose banner the Christians of Galicia and Asturias began in the 9th century to combat and drive back the Muslims of the Iberian Peninsula. Santiago de Compostela, in Galicia, the centre of devotion to this Apostle, is neither the cradle nor the principal seat of the order. Two cities contend for the honour of having given it birth, León in the kingdom of that name, and Uclés in Castile. At that time (1157–1230) the royal dynasty was divided into two rival branches, which rivalry tended to obscure the beginnings of the order. The Knights of Santiago had possessions in each of the kingdoms, but Ferdinand II of León and Alfonso VIII of Castile, in bestowing them, set the condition that the seat of the order should be in their respective states. Hence arose long disputes which only ended in 1230 when Ferdinand III, the Saint, united both crowns. Thenceforth, Uclés, in Cuenca Province, was regarded as the headquarters of the order; there the grand master habitually resided,
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    175
    Order of St. John

    Order of St. John

    The Bailiwick of Brandenburg of the Chivalric Order of Saint John of the Hospital at Jerusalem (in German, the Balley Brandenburg des Ritterlichen Ordens Sankt Johannis vom Spital zu Jerusalem), or simply the Order of Saint John (Der Johanniterorden), is the German Protestant branch of the Knights Hospitaller, the oldest chivalric order, which generally is considered to have been founded in Jerusalem in the year 1099. The Order is led by its thirty-seventh Herrenmeister ("Master of the Knights"), Oskar Prinz von Preußen (born in 1959, he is a great-grandson of the last German emperor, Wilhelm II). Each of its knights, about four thousand men worldwide, is either a Knight of Justice (Rechtsritter) or a Knight of Honor (Ehrenritter). Membership in the order is by invitation only, and individuals may not petition for admission; it is not limited to German citizens or German speakers, and knights include citizens and residents of most major nations. The Order comprises seventeen commanderies in Germany, one each in Austria, Finland, France, Hungary, and Switzerland, and one global commandery with subcommanderies in eleven other countries (Australia, Belgium, Canada, Colombia, Denmark,
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    176
    6.50
    2 votes
    177
    Order of the White Lion

    Order of the White Lion

    The Order of the White Lion is the highest order of the Czech Republic. It continues a Czechoslovak order of the same name created in 1922 as an award for foreigners. (Czechoslovakia had no civilian decoration for its citizens in 1920s and 1930s). It was inspired by the Czech Nobility Cross created in 1814 by the Emperor and King Francis I and awarded to 37 Bohemian noblemen. The order was created as an award for merit by Czechoslovakia for foreign citizens. The Order was established in five classes and two divisions, civil (with two crossed palms above the badge) and military (with two crossed swords above the badge). Medals were made of gold and silver. The numbers of recipients was originally limited, with the limits changing during later years. The Statutes of the order were amended in 1924, 1930, and 1936. The badge of the Order was a five-sided red enameled star, the ends adorned with small balls, and with leaflets between the arms. In middle of the star is a silver lion, taken from the national coat of arms. The reverse or the Star is also red enameled, with the coat of arms of the former parts of Czechoslovakia (Bohemia, Moravia, Silesia, Slovakia and Carpathian Ruthenia).
    6.50
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    178
    The Royal Norwegian Order of St. Olav

    The Royal Norwegian Order of St. Olav

    The Royal Norwegian Order of St. Olav (Norwegian: Den Kongelige Norske St. Olavs Orden; or Sanct Olafs Orden, the old Norwegian name) is a Norwegian order of chivalry that was instituted by King Oscar I of Norway and Sweden on August 21, 1847, as a distinctly Norwegian order. It is named after King Olav II, known for posterity as St. Olav. Nobility was abolished in Norway in 1821. Just before the union with Sweden was dissolved in 1905, the Order of the Norwegian Lion was instituted in 1904 by King Oscar II, but it was not awarded by his successor Haakon VII. The Order of St. Olav thus became the kingdom's only order of chivalry for the next 80 years. The Grand Master of the order is the reigning monarch of Norway. It is awarded to individuals as a reward for remarkable accomplishments on behalf of the country and humanity. Since 1985, the order has only been conferred upon Norwegian citizens, though foreign heads of state and royals are awarded the order as a matter of courtesy. The King awards the order upon the recommendation of a six-member commission, consisting of a chancellor, vice chancellor, the Lord Chamberlain (acting as treasurer), and three other representatives. The
    6.50
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    179
    Order of St. Sylvester

    Order of St. Sylvester

    The Pontifical Equestrian Order of St. Sylvester Pope and Martyr (Latin: Ordo Sanctus Silvestri Papae, Italian: Ordine di San Silvestro Papa), sometimes referred to as the Sylvestrine Order, or the Pontifical Order of Pope St Sylvester, is one of five Orders of Knighthood awarded directly by the Pope as Supreme Pontiff and head of the Catholic Church and as the Head of State of Vatican City. This Order was at one time united with the Order of the Golden Militia. Pope Pius X in his motu proprio of 7 February 1905, entitled Multum ad excitandos, divided the Sylvestrine Order into two Orders of Knighthood, one retaining the name of St. Sylvester and the other taking the ancient name of the Order, i.e. Order of the Golden Militia, or Order of the Golden Spur. It is intended to honor Roman Catholic lay people who are actively involved in the life of the church, particularly as it is exemplified in the exercise of their professional duties and mastership of the different arts. It is also conferred on non-Catholics and in the UK current recipients include prominent Anglicans, Muslims and Jews. Awards of the Order are generally made on the recommendation of Diocesan Bishops, or of
    4.75
    4 votes
    180
    Order of St Michael and St George

    Order of St Michael and St George

    • Founders: George IV of the United Kingdom
    • Chivalric Titles: Knight Commander of the Order of St Michael and St George
    The Most Distinguished Order of Saint Michael and Saint George is an order of chivalry founded on 28 April 1818 by George, Prince Regent, later George IV of the United Kingdom, while he was acting as Prince Regent for his father, George III. It is named in honour of two military saints, St. Michael and St. George. The Order of St Michael and St George is awarded to men and women who render extraordinary or important non-military service in a foreign country. It can also be conferred for important or loyal service in relation to foreign and Commonwealth affairs. The Order includes three classes, in descending order of seniority: It is used to honour individuals who have rendered important services in relation to Commonwealth or foreign nations. People are appointed to the Order rather than awarded it. British Ambassadors to foreign nations are regularly appointed as KCMGs or CMGs. For example, the former British Ambassador to the United States, Sir David Manning, was appointed a CMG when he worked for the British Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO), and then after his appointment as British Ambassador to the US, he was promoted to a Knight Commander (KCMG). It is the traditional
    7.00
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    181
    Order of the Dannebrog

    Order of the Dannebrog

    The Order of the Dannebrog (Danish: Dannebrogordenen) is an Order of Denmark, instituted in 1671 by Christian V. It resulted from a move in 1660 to break the absolutism of the nobility. The Order was only to comprise 50 noble Knights in one class plus the Master of the Order, i.e. the Danish monarch, and his sons. In 1808, the Order was reformed and divided into four classes, with the ranks: The Grand Cross can, as a special honor, be awarded "with diamonds". There is also a Cross of Honour (D.Ht.) (Dannebrogordens Hæderstegn). The Grand Commander class is reserved to persons of princely origin. It is only awarded to Royals with close family ties with the Danish Royal House. The statute of the Order was amended in 1951 by a Royal Ordinance so that both men and women could be members of the Order. Today, the Order of Dannebrog is a means of honouring and rewarding the faithful servants of the modern Danish state for meritorious civil or military service, for a particular contribution to the arts, sciences or business life or for those working for Danish interests. The badge of the Order is a white enamelled Dannebrog cross (i.e., a cross pattée, the lower arm being longer than the
    7.00
    1 votes
    182
    Order of the Rising Sun

    Order of the Rising Sun

    • Category: Japanese Order
    • Founders: Emperor Meiji
    The Order of the Rising Sun (旭日章, Kyokujitsu-shō) is a Japanese order, established in 1875 by Emperor Meiji of Japan. The Order was the first national decoration awarded by the Japanese Government, created on April 10, 1875 by decree of the Council of State. The badge features rays of sunlight from the rising sun. The design of the Rising Sun symbolizes energy as powerful as the rising sun in parallel with the "rising sun" concept of Japan ("Land of the Rising Sun"). The order is awarded to those who have made distinguished achievements in international relations, promotion of Japanese culture, advancements in their field, development in social/occupational welfare or preservation of the environment. Beginning in 2003 the highest ranking medal for the Order of the Rising Sun became a separate order known as Grand Cordon of the Order of the Paulownia Flowers. The modern version of this honor has been conferred on non-Japanese recipients beginning in 1981 (although several foreigners were given the honor before World War II); and women were awarded the Order starting in 2003 (previously, women were awarded the Order of the Precious Crown). The awarding of the Order is administered by
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    183

    Order of the Sun

    The Order of the Sun (La Orden El Sol del Peru) is the highest award bestowed by the nation of Peru to commend notable civil and military merit. The award is the oldest civilian award in the Americas, first being established in 1821. The Order was originally instituted on 8 October 1821 by General José de San Martín on reaching Lima to recognize those who had distinguished themselves in the campaign against the Spanish Royalist. It was discontinued four years later. The Order was re-established in 1921. The award consists of six classes:
    7.00
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    184

    Gold Bauhinia Star

    The Gold Bauhinia Star (Chinese: 金紫荊星章, GBS) is the highest rank in Order of the Bauhinia Star in Hong Kong, created in 1997 to replace the British honours system of the Order of the British Empire after the transfer of sovereignty to People's Republic of China and the establishment of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region (HKSAR). It is awarded to those who have given distinguished service to the community or rendered public or voluntary services of a very high degree of merit. "Gold Bauhinia Star". on Webb-site Who's Who. http://webb-site.com/dbpub/officers.asp?p=27764.
    6.00
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    185
    Livonian Brothers of the Sword

    Livonian Brothers of the Sword

    • Category: Military order
    The Livonian Brothers of the Sword (Latin: Fratres militiæ Christi Livoniae, German: Schwertbrüderorden) were a military order founded by Bishop Albert of Riga in 1202. Pope Innocent III sanctioned the establishment in 1204. The membership of the order comprised German "warrior monks". Alternative names of the Order include the Christ Knights, Sword Brethren, and The Militia of Christ of Livonia. Following their defeat by the Samogitians and Semigallians in the Battle of Schaulen (Saule) in 1236, the surviving Brothers merged into the Teutonic Order as an autonomous branch and became known as the Livonian Order. Albert, Bishop of Riga (or Prince-Bishop of Livonia), founded the Brotherhood in 1202 to aid the Bishopric of Livonia in the conversion of the pagan Livonians, Latgalians and Selonians living across the ancient trade routes from the Gulf of Riga eastwards. From its foundation, the undisciplined Order tended to ignore its supposed vassalage to the bishops. In 1218 Albert asked King Valdemar II of Denmark for assistance, but Valdemar instead arranged a deal with the Brotherhood and conquered northern Estonia (now known as Danish Estonia) for Denmark. The Brotherhood had its
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    186

    Order of Belize

    The Order of Belize is the second highest honour awarded to foreigners in by the government of Belize. It was instituted on 16 August 1991.
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    187

    Order of Hamondieh

    The Order of Hamondieh was a decoration of the Sultanate of Zanzibar. The award was usually made in recognition of services rendered to the Sultan or state of Zanzibar. It was awarded in the following order of precedence:
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    188

    Order of Prince Henry

    The Order of Prince Henry the Navigator (Portuguese: Ordem do Infante Dom Henrique) is a Portuguese National Order of Knighthood created on June 2, 1960, to commemorate the quincentenary of the death of the Infante Henry the Navigator (known in Portuguese as Henrique), fifth son of King John I of Portugal and his queen, Philippa of Lancaster. Minor reforms of the constitution of the Order occurred in 1962 and 1980. It is a five-tier order, whose titles are awarded for relevant services to Portugal and for services in the expansion of the Portuguese culture, its history and its values (with a particular focus on its maritime history). The number of members in each grade is restricted by its constitution, and titles are attributed by special decree by the Grand Master of the Order, i.e. the President of the Republic of Portugal. The order includes several classes; in decreasing order of seniority, these are: There is also a Silver Medal (Medalha de Prata - MedPIH) and a Gold Medal (Medalha de Ouro - MedOIH). Ribbons and medals are characterized by equal stripes of blue, white and black (either horizontal or vertical) and a ruby-enamelled golden Jerusalem cross. The stars of Grand
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    2 votes
    189
    Order of St. George

    Order of St. George

    The Order of Saint George (Russian: Орден «Святого Георгия») is the highest purely military decoration of the Russian Federation. Originally established November 26, 1769 by Empress Catherine the Great it was revived on August 8, 2000 by Decree №1463 of the President of Russia. The award criteria were amended on September 7, 2010 by Presidential Decree 1099. The Order of Saint George is awarded to top and senior military officers for the conduct of military operations to protect the Fatherland in the case of attack by an external enemy which resulted in the complete defeat of the enemy, for the execution of combat and other operations in other states aimed at restoring international peace and security, for being a model of military science with feats that exemplify military prowess, and who were previously awarded state awards of the Russian Federation for distinction in combat. The Order of Saint George is divided into four classes, from the First Class to the Fifth class; the highest degree being the Order First class. The five classes are awarded sequentially from the fifth to the first. These five classes are individually identified by the size and manner of wearing the two
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    190

    Order of the Faith and Peace

    • Category: Military order
    The Order of the Faith and Peace or Order of the Sword was a military order in Gascony in the mid-13th century. The order was first mentioned by Pope Gregory IX in 1231 in a letter to magistro militiae ordinis sancti Jacobi ejusque fratribus tam presentibus quam futuris ad defensionem fidei et pacis in Guasconia constitutis ("the master of the military order of Saint James and his brothers present and future constituted for the defence of the faith and of the peace in Gascony"). It was founded by Amanieu I, Archbishop of Auch. Since Amanieu had been appointed to his see in 1226, the date of the foundation must be located in 1226–1231. Gregory had sent a letter to Amanieu in 1227 exhorting him to establish the peace, which may have prompted the founding of an order of knighthood. Amanieu and the order's earliest members travelled to Rome in 1231 and there received confirmation from Gregory. The order had properties mainly west of Toulouse in the dioceses of Auch, Bayonne, Comminges, and Lescar. Its main purpose was not to fight heresies like Catharism but rather to keep the peace in the Auxitana provincia (province of Auch). Gregory placed it under a rule adapted from the Order of
    6.00
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    191
    Order of the Holy Sepulchre

    Order of the Holy Sepulchre

    • Category: Military order
    The Equestrian Order of the Holy Sepulchre of Jerusalem (lat.: Ordo Equestris Sancti Sepulcri Hierosolymitani, OESSH) is a Roman Catholic order of knighthood under the protection of the pope. It traces its roots to Duke Godfrey of Bouillon, principal leader of the First Crusade. In 1496, Pope Alexander VI created the office of Grand Master of the Order, and the office vested in the papacy. The office of Grand Master remained vested in the papacy until 1949. Since then a cardinal has been grand master. The Pope is sovereign of the Order, and it enjoys the protection of the Holy See and has its legal seat at Vatican City. Five major orders were formed in the Holy Land between the late 11th century and the early 12th century: the Knights of the Holy Sepulchre (circa 1099), Knights Templar (circa 1118), Knights Hospitaller (circa 1099) (St John), Knights of the Hospital of St Mary of Jerusalem (Teutonic Knights) and Knights of St Lazarus. Templar knights who contracted leprosy were sent to the care of the Order of St Lazarus. These knights trained the brethren of St Lazarus in the military arts and were responsible for transforming the Order into a military one. William, Archbishop of
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    192
    Order of Vittorio Veneto

    Order of Vittorio Veneto

    • Founders: Giuseppe Saragat
    The military Order of Vittorio Veneto was founded as national order by the fifth President of the Italian Republic, Giuseppe Saragat, in 1968, "to express the gratitude of the nation" to those decorated with the Medaglia e Croce di Guerra al Valor Militare who had fought for at least six months in World War I and earlier conflicts. Awarded in the single degree of Knight, a small annuity was granted in favour of those recipients who did not enjoy an income above their tax allowance, payable to the widow or minor children on death. The allowance was also granted to those that fought in the former Austro-Hungarian armed forces who became Italian citizens after annexation. The order was bestowed by decree of the President of the Republic, its head, on the recommendation of the Minister of Defence. A Lieutenant General chaired the council, which screened applications made by eligible parties to the municipality of residence. However, with the death of the last surviving Knights of Vittorio Veneto in 2008, the order fell into abeyance and, in 2010, it was formally wound-up by repeal of the original legislation.
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    193

    Order of La Pléiade

    The Order of La Pléiade (French: l'ordre de la Pléiade de l'Association des parlementaires de langue française), sometimes also referred by the anglicised name Order of the Pleiades, is an award of the Francophonie, and is intended to recognize those who have particularly distinguished themselves by serving the ideals of cooperation and friendship of the Francophonie. The award was created in 1976 on initiative of the Assemblée parlementaire de la Francophonie and is named after La Pléiade, a group of 16th-century French Renaissance poets whose principal members were Pierre de Ronsard, Joachim du Bellay and Jean-Antoine de Baïf. The name was a reference to another literary group, the original Alexandrian Pleiad of seven Alexandrian poets and tragedians (3rd century B.C.), corresponding to the seven stars of the Pleiades star cluster. The award exists in the style of an order of knighthood and is issued in five grades: The badge of the Order of La Pléiade is a seven-pointed star, blue enameled at both sides. The obverse silver central disc features a silver coloured compass rose, surrounded by a blue enamel and silver edged ring with the text "la Pléiade, ordre de la Francophonie",
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    194
    Order of Saint James of Altopascio

    Order of Saint James of Altopascio

    • Category: Military order
    The Order of Saint James of Altopascio (Italian: Ordine di San Giacomo d'Altopascio or Ordine dei Frati Ospitalieri di San Jacopo), also called the Knights of the Tau (Cavalieri del Tau) or Hospitallers of Saint James, was a military order, perhaps the earliest Christian institution to combine the protection and assistance of pilgrims, the staffing of hospitals, and a military wing. According to American historian Ephraim Emerton, who produced the first systematic study the Order, "the fame of the house drew visitors, both well and sick, received women in childbirth and infants . . ." The Order was founded by Matilda of Canossa between 1070 and 1080 at Altopascio, a town on the Via Francigena in what is now Tuscany. The earliest datable reference to a hospital edificatus in locus et finibus ubi dicitur Teupascio ("built in the place called Teupascio") is from 1084. Ludovico Muratori thought Teupascio to be an eighth-century corruption of the Latin Altopassus. The variants Taupascio and Topascio have led some to suppose a relationship between the (alternative) name of the town and the Order sometimes known as "of the Tau", after their symbol, which would once have been a common
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    195
    Order of Saint Joseph

    Order of Saint Joseph

    • Category: Monarchical Order
    The Order of Saint Joseph was instituted in 1807 by Ferdinand III, Grand Duke of Tuscany during his reign as Grand Duke of Würzburg. It was transformed into a Tuscan Dynastic Order in 1817. The constitution of the Order was promulgated in March 1817, with amendments in August 1817. The order was divided into civil and military categories but these are now defunct. It is given to reward services towards Tuscan culture and civilisation and to the Grand Ducal House as a whole. The Order is divided into four levels: These numbers excluded Sovereigns, Heads of State, and Princes of the Grand Ducal House and other Royal Houses, Cardinals of the Holy Roman Church and Tuscan Metropolitan Archbishops. The number of women members cannot exceed fifty, excluding Princesses of the Grand Ducal and other Royal Houses, wives of Heads of State and Dames of the Order of Saint Stephen. It is permitted for non-nobles to be admitted into the Order of the level of Grand Cross in cases of exceptional merit. Dames wear the same Cross as Knights but from a bow on the left breast. Dame Grand Crosses wear the Cross hanging from a Riband like the Knights but without the Star.
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    196
    Order of St. George

    Order of St. George

    The Order of St. George (St. Georgs-Orden), was founded by King Ernest Augustus I of Hanover, on 23 April 1839. In the statutes establishing the order it was designated as the House Order of the Crown of Hanover. The order is of a single grade and limited to 16 members, excluding members of the royal family. The badge is an eight-pointed Maltese Cross, surmounted by a gold crown. The arms are covered in blue enamel with gold trim and balls on the tips of the cross. Between the arms are golden lions. A round medallion in the center and depicts St. George on horseback in a duel with a green dragon. The back has the cypher of the founder of the order EAR (Ernst August Rex). The star of the order is of brilliant silver with eight arms. In the center is the scene of St. George and the dragon, surrounded by a red enamel ring with the motto of the order "Nunquam retrorsum" in gold. The ribbon of the order is dark crimson.
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    197
    Order of the Golden Kite

    Order of the Golden Kite

    • Category: Japanese Order
    • Founders: Emperor Meiji
    • Chivalric Titles: Order of the Golden Kite
    The Order of the Golden Kite (金鵄勲章, Kinshi Kunsho) was an order of the Empire of Japan, established on 12 February 1890 by Emperor Meiji "in commemoration of Jimmu Tennō, the Romulus of Japan." It was officially abolished by the Supreme Commander of the Allied Powers of Occupied Japan in 1947 after World War II. The Order of the Golden Kite was an exclusively military award, conferred for bravery, leadership or command in battle. The order consisted of seven classes. Enlisted rank soldiers were eligible for the 7th - 5th classes, non-commissioned officers were eligible for the 6th - 4th classes, junior officers for the 5th - 3rd classes, field grade officers for the 4th-2nd classes and general officers for the 3rd-1st classes. A total of 1,067,492 Order of the Golden Kite awards were made over the history of the order, most of them in the two lower 6th and 7th classes. Only 41 of the 1st class and 201 of the 2nd class were awarded. By conflict: The award came with an annual monetary stipend, fixed in 1916. This was awarded for the lifetime of the recipient, and following his death, it would be awarded to the recipient's family for one year after. If the recipient died within 5
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    198

    Order of the Rajamitrabhorn

    • Chivalric Titles: Knight of the Order of the Rajamitrabhorn
    The Most Auspicious Order of the Rajamitrabhorn (Thai: เครื่องราชอิสริยาภรณ์อันเป็นมงคลยิ่งราชมิตราภรณ์) is the highest royal order of Thailand. It was established on 11 June 1962 by King Rama IX to be bestowed upon foreign Heads of State. Members of the order are entitled to use the postnominals ร.ม.ภ. The decoration consists of a single class (Knight). The insignia for this class is:
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    199
    Order of the White Eagle

    Order of the White Eagle

    The Order of the White Eagle (Polish: Order Orła Białego) is Poland's highest decoration awarded to both civilians and the military for their merits. It was officially instituted on November 1, 1705 by Augustus II the Strong and bestowed on eight of his supporters: four Polish magnates, three Russian field marshals (including Peter Lacy), and one Cossack hetman. The badge Order of the White Eagle was originally a red enamel oval gold medal with an image of the Polish white eagle on its front side and bearing Augustus II's royal cypher over crossed swords on its reverse side worn on a light blue ribbon. This was replaced by a Maltese cross in 1709. By 1713 it was worn from the neck, with a blue sash, and a star. Although Augustus the Strong limited the number of knights to seventy-two, he only conferred the Order forty times before his death in 1733. His son, Augustus, however, awarded the Order more than three hundred times. Augustus may have been inspired to found the Order by the example of Peter the Great's recent founding of the Russian Order of Saint Andrew (of which he himself had been made one of the first knights by the Russian emperor), and above all by the example of the
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    200
    Knights Templar

    Knights Templar

    • Category: Military order
    The Poor Fellow-Soldiers of Christ and of the Temple of Solomon (Latin: Pauperes commilitones Christi Templique Solomonici), commonly known as the Knights Templar, the Order of the Temple (French: Ordre du Temple or Templiers) or simply as Templars, were among the most famous of the Western Christian military orders. The organisation existed for nearly two centuries during the Middle Ages. Officially endorsed by the Catholic Church around 1129, the Order became a favored charity throughout Christendom, and grew rapidly in membership and power. Templar knights, in their distinctive white mantles with a red cross, were among the most skilled fighting units of the Crusades. Non-combatant members of the Order managed a large economic infrastructure throughout Christendom, innovating financial techniques that were an early form of banking, and building fortifications across Europe and the Holy Land. The Templars' existence was tied closely to the Crusades; when the Holy Land was lost, support for the Order faded. Rumors about the Templars' secret initiation ceremony created mistrust, and King Philip IV of France, deeply in debt to the Order, took advantage of the situation. In 1307,
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    3 votes
    201

    Cross of Valour

    The Cross of Valour (French: Croix de la vaillance) is a decoration that is, within the Canadian system of honours, the second highest award (superseded only by the Victoria Cross), the highest honour available for Canadian civilians, and the highest of the three Canadian Bravery Decorations. Created in 1972, the medallion is presented to individuals, both Canadians and foreigners, living and deceased, who have performed acts of the most conspicuous courage in circumstances of extreme peril and grants recipients the ability to use the post-nominal letters CV. The Cross of Valour was conceived of as a replacement for the Order of Canada's Medal of Courage, which had never been awarded since its creation in 1967. On the advice of her Cabinet headed by Prime Minister Pierre Trudeau, the Cross of Valour was initiated on 1  May  1972 by Queen Elizabeth II, and presented for the first time on 20 July of the same year. Prior to 1967, the equivalent medal that Canadians received was the George Cross, of which ten were awarded in Canada: eight military, one merchant navy, and one civilian. The Cross of Valour became the centre of a controversy in 2007, when it was announced from the
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    202
    Légion d'honneur

    Légion d'honneur

    • Founders: Napoleon Bonaparte
    • Chivalric Titles: Grand Officer of the Légion d'honneur
    The Legion of Honour, or in full the National Order of the Legion of Honour (French: Ordre national de la Légion d'honneur) is a French order established by Napoleon Bonaparte, First Consul of the Consulat which succeeded to the Directoire, on 19 May 1802. The Order is the highest decoration in France and is divided into five degrees: Chevalier (Knight), Officier (Officer), Commandeur (Commander), Grand Officier (Grand Officer) and Grand Croix (Grand Cross). The order's motto is Honneur et Patrie ("Honour and Fatherland"), and its seat is the Palais de la Légion d'Honneur on the left bank of the River Seine in Paris. In the French Revolution all French orders of chivalry were abolished, and replaced with Weapons of Honour. It was the wish of Napoleon Bonaparte, the First Consul and de facto sole ruler, to create a reward to commend civilians and soldiers and from this wish was instituted a Légion d'Honneur, a body of men that was not an order of chivalry, for Napoleon believed France wanted a recognition of merit rather than a new system of nobility. The Légion used however the organization of old French Orders of Chivalry, like the Ordre de Saint-Louis. The badges of the legion do
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    1 votes
    203
    Order of Beneficence

    Order of Beneficence

    The Order of Beneficence (Greek: Τάγμα Ευποιΐας), is an order of Greece, that was established in 1948. It is conferred by the Greek government as a moral reward for women especially, Greek and foreign, for the good services they have rendered to the Fatherland in the field of charity as well as for their performance in the arts and letters. The fact that the order is awarded to women does not mean that the other Greek decorations are awarded exclusively to men. The Order has five classes: The badge of the Order is a five tipped blue-enamelled flower, in silver for the Silver Cross class, in gold for the higher classes. The overall design is clearly derived from the then-recently abolished British Order of the Indian Empire. The obverse central disc bears a portrait of the Holy Virgin with the Divine Child in Her arms with the legend "ΕΥΠΟΙΙΑ" («Beneficence») on a white enamel ring. The reverse side bears the emblem of the Hellenic Republic. The star of the Order is a silver eight-pointed star with straight rays, with the same central disc as the obverse of the badge, while the reverse side also bears the emblem of the Hellenic Republic. The ribbon of the Order is orange with blue
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    204
    Order of Merit of the Federal Republic of Germany

    Order of Merit of the Federal Republic of Germany

    The Order of Merit of the Federal Republic of Germany (Verdienstorden der Bundesrepublik Deutschland) is the only federal decoration of Germany. It was created by the first President of the Federal Republic of Germany, Theodor Heuss, on 7 September 1951. Since then between 2,100 and 5,200 awards are given every year across all classes. Colloquially, the decorations of the different classes of the Order are also known as Federal Cross of Merit (German: Bundesverdienstkreuz). Most of the German federal states (Bundesländer) have each their own order of merit as well, with the exception of the Free and Hanseatic Cities of Bremen and Hamburg, which reject any orders (by old tradition their citizens, particularly former or present senators, will refuse any decoration in the form of an order. Most famous example: former Chancellor Helmut Schmidt). The Order comprises four groups with in total eight classes: The President of the Federal Republic holds the Grand Cross Special Class ex officio. It is awarded to him in a ceremony by the President of the Bundestag, attended by the Chancellor of Germany, the President of the Bundesrat, and the Supreme Court President. Other than the German
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    Order of Merit of the Grand Duchy of Luxembourg

    Order of Merit of the Grand Duchy of Luxembourg

    The Order of Merit of the Grand Duchy of Luxembourg (l’Ordre de Mérite du Grand-Duché de Luxembourg) is a distinguished honorary order of Luxembourg. It was instituted on January 23, 1961 by Grand Duchess Charlotte. Grandmaster of the order is the Grand Duke of Luxembourg. Besides the five classes, a gilt medal can also be bestowed. The order is composed of 5 grades : Members of the Order of Merit of Luxembourg include the following: Grand Cross: Grand Officer: Commander: Officer Knight
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    Order of St. Anna

    Order of St. Anna

    The Order of St. Anna (also "Order of Saint Ann" or "Order of Saint Anne") Russian: Орден Святой Анны is a Holstein and then Russian Imperial order of chivalry established by Karl Friedrich, Duke of Holstein-Gottorp on 14 February 1735, in honour of his wife Anna Petrovna, daughter of Peter the Great of Russia. The motto of the Order was "Amantibus Justitiam, Pietatem, Fidem" ("To those who love justice, piety, and fidelity"). Its festival day is 3 February (16 February by New Style). This Order originally is a Dynastic order of knighthood, but from 1797 to 1917 is has dual status as a dynastic order and as a State Order. The Head of Imperial House of Russia always hold a position of the Head of Imperial Order of St.Anna. Membership of the Order awarded for a distinguished career in civil service or for valour and distinguished service in the military. The Order of Saint Anne entitled first class recipients to hereditary nobility while other recipients to personal nobility. For military recipients, it was awarded with swords. At first, the order had but one class and was named the "Order of Anna". The statutes of the Order promulgated in 1735 established as the principal insignia a
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    Order of the Crown

    Order of the Crown

    The Order of the Crown (French: Ordre de la Couronne) (Dutch: Kroonorde) is an Order of the Kingdom of Belgium established on October 15, 1897 by King Leopold II in his capacity as ruler of the Congo Free State. The order was first intended to recognize heroic deeds and distinguished service achieved for service in the Congo Free State - many of which acts soon became highly controversial. In 1908, the Order of the Crown was made a national decoration of Belgium, junior to the Order of Leopold. Currently, the Order of the Crown is awarded for services rendered to the Belgian state, especially for meritorious service in public employment. The Order of the Crown is also awarded for distinguished artistic, literary or scientific achievements, or for commercial or industrial services in Belgium or Africa. The Order may also be bestowed to foreign nationals and is frequently awarded to military and diplomatic personnel of other countries stationed in (or providing support to) Belgium. During the Second World War, the Order of the Crown was extensively authorized for award to Allied military personnel who had helped to liberate Belgium from the occupation forces of Nazi Germany. The
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    Teutonic Knights

    Teutonic Knights

    • Category: Military order
    The Order of Brothers of the German House of Saint Mary in Jerusalem (Official names: Latin: Ordo domus Sanctæ Mariæ Theutonicorum Hierosolymitanorum, German: Orden der Brüder vom Deutschen Haus St. Mariens in Jerusalem), commonly the Teutonic Order (Today: German Order = Deutscher Orden, also Deutschherrenorden or Deutschritterorden), is a German medieval military order, and in modern times a purely religious Catholic order. It was formed to aid Christians on their pilgrimages to the Holy Land and to establish hospitals. Its members have commonly been known as the Teutonic Knights, since they also served as a crusading military order in the Middle Ages. The military membership was always small, with volunteers and mercenaries augmenting the force as needed. After the Reformation, the Bailiwick of Utrecht of the Order became Protestant; this branch still consists of knights, but the modern Roman Catholic order consists of Roman Catholic priests, nuns, and associates. Formed at the end of the 12th century in Acre, in the Levant, the medieval Order played an important role in Outremer, controlling the port tolls of Acre. After Christian forces were defeated in the Middle East, the
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    Ladies Merit Cross

    Ladies Merit Cross

    The Ladies Merit Cross (Frauenverdienstkreuz) was founded on 22 October 1907 by King William II of Prussia as a two-class Ladies Order and to reward women and young women, who worked in the field of charity, or in a religious or social field, who rendered outstanding had personal self-sacrificing service. The award was ranked just behind the Order of Louise. To be awarded the first class, a member must have held the second class for ten years. In exceptional cases, this requirement could be waived. The insignia were returnable upon death. The badge is made of gold in the first class and of silver for the second class medallion. In the center is a cross fleury with stylized cornflowers between the arms of the cross. The medallion is framed by a string of pearls and is surmounted by a crown. On the edge of the medallion is the blue enameled inscription FÜR VERDIENSTE (For Merit). On the lower half of the edge are laurel branches flanking the intertwined letters AV (Augusta Victoria). The insignia of the order was worn on a white bow on the left chest.
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    Order of New Brunswick

    The Order of New Brunswick (French: Ordre du Nouveau Brunswick) is a civilian honour for merit in the Canadian province of New Brunswick. Instituted in 2000 by Lieutenant Governor Marilyn Trenholme Counsell, on the advice of the Cabinet under Premier Bernard Lord, the order is administered by the Governor-in-Council and is intended to honour current or former New Brunswick residents for conspicuous achievements in any field, being thus described as the highest honour amongst all others conferred by the New Brunswick Crown. The Order of New Brunswick is intended to honour any current or former long time resident of New Brunswick who has demonstrated a high level of individual excellence and achievement in any field, having made "outstanding contributions to the social, cultural or economic well-being of New Brunswick and its residents." There are no limits on how many can belong to the order, though inductions are limited to 10 per year; Canadian citizenship is a requirement, and those who are elected or appointed members of a governmental body are ineligible as long as they hold office. The process of finding qualified individuals begins with submissions from the public to the
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    Order of the Southern Cross

    Order of the Southern Cross

    The National Order of the Southern Cross (Portuguese: Ordem Nacional do Cruzeiro do Sul) is a Brazilian order of chivalry founded by Emperor Pedro I on 1 December 1822. This order was intended to commemorate the independence of Brazil and the coronation of Pedro I. The name derives from the geographical position of the country, under the constellation of the Southern Cross and also in memory of the name – Terra de Santa Cruz – given to Brazil at the time of its discovery. Originally known as the Imperial Order of the Southern Cross (Ordem Imperial do Cruzeiro do Sul), the Order was erected by Emperor Pedro I on the very day of his Coronation, on 1 December 1822. Also on the same date the first knights of the order were appointed, to commemorate the crowning of the Empire's first monarch. Since the proclamation of the independence of Brazil on 7 September 1822 other honorific awards had been made, but of the Orders of chivalry shared with Portugal, Brazilian branches of which had been created upon independence; the Order of the Southern Cross, created to mark the Coronation of the Empire's founder, was thus also the first purely Brazilian Order. It was suppressed after the
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    Tomáš Garrigue Masaryk Order

    • Chivalric Titles: Tomáš Garrigue Masaryk Order (Fourth Class)
    The Order of Tomáš Garrigue Masaryk (Czech: Řád Tomáše Garrigue Masaryka) is an Order of the Czech Republic and the former Czechoslovakia. It was established in 1990 after the Velvet Revolution, and re-established in 1994 (following the dissolution of Czechoslovakia). The President of the Czech Republic awards it to individuals who have made outstanding contributions to the development of democracy, humanity and human rights. The order has five classes, of which class I is the highest. The order is named in honor of Tomáš Garrigue Masaryk, an advocate of Czechoslovak independence and the first President of Czechoslovakia. By law, President of the Czech Republic is entitled to the class I insignia of this order; after leaving the office, the order may be conferred upon him for life by a joint resolution of the Chamber of Deputies and the Senate.
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    Yukon Territory Order of Polaris

    The Order of Polaris is given out by the Government of Yukon Territory in Canada for: The Order of Polaris was created by the Government of the Yukon Territory in 1973, to honour members of the Canada's Aviation Hall of Fame, especially those who flew over the Yukon. The medal and scroll were presented by the Commissioner of the Yukon Territory (or designate) at a ceremony in Edmonton. The award is a simple, circular, silver medal. The obverse has a symbolic representation of the Polar star above and flanked by simulated aerial exhaust trails or stylized wings. Around the upper half of the medal are the words "Order of Polaris" preceded and followed by a maple leaf. The reverse on the first series of medals is blank. The second series of medals have the coat of arms for the Yukon Territories with the word "YUKON" above it. The ribbon has equal stripes of the colours of the Yukon Territory - green, white and blue. For those recipients who actually flew over the territory during their aviation careers, a maple leaf bar, similar to that worn on the Canadian Volunteer Service Medal 1939-45, is attached to the medal ribbon. Any Canadian citizen who is a current or former resident of
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    Hilal-i-Imtiaz

    The Hilal-i-Imtiaz (English: Crescent of Excellence, Urdu: هلال امتيا ز ) is the second highest civilian award and honor given to both civilians and military officers of the Pakistan armed forces by the Government of Pakistan. It recognizes individuals who have made an "especially meritorious contribution to the security or national interests of Pakistan, world peace, cultural or other significant public endeavors". It is a civilian award, and not limited to the citizens of Pakistan. The honor is restricted to individuals who have made outstanding contributions in their fields that led to international recognition to the State. It is awarded in the fields of literature, arts, sports, medicine, and science for civilians. It is announced every year on Independence Day, August 14, and given on Pakistan Day, March 23, by the President of Pakistan. For officers in the military, it is given for distinguished service, and is also the highest medal awarded to those at the rank of Major General or Lieutenant General (Army), Air Vice-Marshals or Air Marshals (Air Force) and Rear-Admiral or Vice-Admiral (Navy, Coast Guard, and Marines). Parliament's committee for Award and Recognition
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    Order of Manitoba

    Order of Manitoba

    The Order of Manitoba is a civilian honour for merit in the Canadian province of Manitoba. Instituted in 1999 when Lieutenant Governor Peter M. Liba granted Royal Assent to The Order of Manitoba Act, the order is administered by the Governor-in-Council and is intended to honour current or former Manitoba residents for conspicuous achievements in any field, being thus described as the highest honour amongst all others conferred by the Manitoba Crown. The Order of Manitoba is intended to honour any current or former long time resident of Manitoba who has demonstrated a high level of individual excellence and achievement in any field, "benefiting in an outstanding manner the social, cultural or economic well being of Manitoba and its residents"; it replaced in this role the Order of the Buffalo Hunt, which had more liberal standards of admission. There are no limits on how many can belong to the order, though inductions are limited to eight per year; Canadian citizenship is a requirement, and those who are elected or appointed members of a governmental body are ineligible as long as they hold office. The process of finding qualified individuals begins with submissions from the public
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    Order of Orange-Nassau

    Order of Orange-Nassau

    The Order of Orange-Nassau (Dutch: Orde van Oranje-Nassau, Dutch pronunciation: [oˈrɑnje ˈnɑsʌu]) is a military and civil Dutch order of chivalry founded on 4 April 1892 by the Queen regent Emma of the Netherlands, acting on behalf of her under-age daughter Queen Wilhelmina. The Order is a chivalry order open to "everyone who has earned special merits for society". These are people who deserve appreciation and recognition from society for the special way in which they have carried out their activities. The order is comparable with the Order of the British Empire in the UK. In 1841 William II of the Netherlands, as Grand Duke of Luxembourg, created the Order of the Oak Crown. Although this was officially not a Dutch order, honours were regularly conferred on Dutch people. After the death of William III, Luxembourg became an independent state. There was a need for a third order, beside the military Order of William and Order of the Netherlands Lion, so that royal honours could be conferred upon foreign diplomats and people from lower ranks and classes. During World War II, the Order of Orange-Nassau was bestowed upon both members of the Netherlands military and members of foreign
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    Order of St. Alexander Nevsky

    Order of St. Alexander Nevsky

    The Imperial Order of St. Alexander Nevsky was an order of chivalry of the Russian Empire. The introduction of the Imperial Order of St. Alexander Nevsky was planned by Emperor Peter I of Russia. It was established by Empress Catherine I of Russia on May 21, 1725 in memory of the deeds of Saint Alexander Nevsky in defending Russia against foreign invaders. The order was originally awarded to distinguished Russian citizens who had served their country with honor, mostly through political or military service. Among the most prominent recipients of the order were Aleksandr Danilovich Menshikov, Alexander Suvorov, Nikolay Adlerberg, Mikhail Kutuzov, Fyodor Ushakov, and Count Peter de Lacy. Tolstoy states in Anna Karenina that the Order of St. Vladimir and Order of St. Andrew were higher honors. After the 1917 Russian Revolution the order continued to be bestowed by the heads of the House of Romanov. Grand Duchess Maria Vladimirovna of Russia claims to be the current Grand Mistress. On January 27, 2006, she bestowed the order on Metropolitan Kirill of Smolensk (later Patriarch Kirill I of Moscow). In 1942, the Soviet Union revived the order as a purely military decoration, and renamed
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    Emprise de l'Escu vert à la Dame Blanche

    • Category: Votive Order
    The Emprise de l'Escu vert à la Dame Blanche ("Enterprise of the Green Shield with the White Lady") was a chivalric order founded by Jean Le Maingre and twelve knights in 1399, committing themselves for the duration of five years. Inspired by the ideal of courtly love, the stated purpose of the order was the protection of women suffering oppression, especially widows, an undertaking that earned the praise of Christine de Pizan. According to his Livre des faits, in 1399 Jean Le Maingre, tired of receiving complaints from ladies, maidens, and widows oppressed by powerful men bent on depriving them of the lands and honours, and finding no knight of squire willing to defend their just cause, out of compassion and charity founded an order of three knights sworn to carry une targe d'or esmaillé de verd & tout une dame blanche dedans ("a shield of gold enamelled with green and a white lady inside"). The three knights, after swearing this oath, affirmed a long letter explaining their purpose and disseminated it widely in France and beyond her borders. The letter explained that any lady young or old de noble lignée ("of noble lineage") finding herself the victim of injustice could petition
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    Order of Honour

    Order of Honour

    The Order of Honour (Greek: Τάγμα Αριστείας της Τιμής) is an order of Greece. It comes second in rank to the Order of the Redeemer, and was established in 1975, replacing the abolished Royal Order of George I. It is conferred by the Greek government upon "Greek citizens who are distinguished in struggles for the Fatherland, to senior executives of the public administration, to eminent personalities of the arts and letters as well as to distinguished scientists or individuals who excelled in the field of trade, shipping and industry. It is also conferred upon foreigners who, due to their distinguished position and through their personal worth, have contributed to the promotion of Greece". As all Greek orders, the Order of Honour has five classes: The badge of the order is a blue-enamelled cross, in silver for the Silver Cross class, in gold for the higher classes. The obverse central disc bears a portrait of the goddess Athena and the legend Ο ΑΓΑΘΟΣ ΜΟΝΟΣ ΤΙΜΗΤΕΟΣ ("Only the righteous should be honoured") on a white enamel band. The reverse bears a simplified national emblem of Greece in the form of a white Greek cross on blue, and on a circular band the legend ΕΛΛΗΝΙΚΗ ΔΗΜΟΚΡΑΤΙΑ
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    Order of the Bath

    Order of the Bath

    • Chivalric Titles: Knight Grand Cross of the Order of the Bath
    The Most Honourable Order of the Bath (formerly The Most Honourable Military Order of the Bath) is a British order of chivalry founded by George I on 18 May 1725. The name derives from the elaborate mediæval ceremony for creating a knight, which involved bathing (as a symbol of purification) as one of its elements. The knights so created were known as Knights of the Bath. George I "erected the Knights of the Bath into a regular Military Order". He did not (as is often stated) revive the Order of the Bath, since it had never previously existed as an Order, in the sense of a body of knights who were governed by a set of statutes and whose numbers were replenished when vacancies occurred. The Order consists of the Sovereign (currently Elizabeth II), the Great Master (currently H.R.H. The Prince of Wales), and three Classes of members: Members belong to either the Civil or the Military Division. Prior to 1815, the order had only a single class, Knight Companion (KB), which no longer exists. Recipients of the Order are now usually senior military officers or senior civil servants. Commonwealth citizens not subjects of the Queen and foreigners may be made Honorary Members. The Order of
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    Order of the Tower and Sword

    Order of the Tower and Sword

    The Military Order of the Tower and of the Sword, of Valour, Loyalty and Merit (Portuguese: Ordem Militar da Torre e Espada do Valor, Lealdade e Mérito) is a Portuguese order of knighthood and the pinnacle of the Portuguese honours system. It was created by King Afonso V in 1459. The order is not only bestowed to people, but may be bestowed to Portuguese municipalities. The order was originally created by King Afonso V of Portugal in 1459, under the name of the Order of the Sword, inspired by the legend that Arab rule in Africa would end when a Christian prince would siege the fortress at Fez. Knighthood in the Order of the Sword was given as reward to those who participated in the conquests and battles in Africa. The order fell into disue after the conquest of Tangiers and Asilah. The order was revived on 29 November 1808, by Prince Regent John, later John VI of Portugal. It commemorated the safe arrival of the Royal Family in the Portuguese colony of Brazil, after Napoleon had invaded Portugal. Its full title was “the Royal Order of the Tower and Sword”. It was available to both Portuguese and foreigners and for military, political or civilian achievement. Among the intended
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    Order of the White Star

    Order of the White Star

    The Order of the White Star (Estonian: Valgetähe teenetemärk, French: Ordre de l'Etoile Blanche) was instituted on 1936. The Order of the White Star is bestowed on Estonian citizens and foreigners to give recognition for services rendered to the Estonian state. The Order of the White Star comprises five classes: The Order has a single Medal Class. The medal class has the same design as the Fifth Class, but the badge itself is backed in a circular section of silver. The Order has a collar design called the Collar of the Order. It has a golden necklet that has smaller Stars in its design all around it. The ribbon is red coloured, and is attached to all classes, and the medal of the Order of the White Star. The First, Second, and Third classes have a double ribbon design, the First has a crossed design, the Second and Third classes have the ribbons meeting at the ends to attach to the Order's Star. The Fourth, Fifth, and the Medal classes have a single red ribbon design.
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    Order of Alcántara

    Order of Alcántara

    • Category: Military order
    The Order of Alcántara (Spanish: Orden de Alcántara), also called the Knights of St. Julian, was originally a military order of León, founded in 1166 and confirmed by Pope Alexander III in 1177. Alcántara, is a town on the Tagus (which is here crossed by a bridge - cantara in Arabic, hence the name). The town is situated on the plain of Extremadura, a great field of conflict for the Muslims and Christians of Iberian Peninsula in the 12th century. Alcántara was first taken in 1167 by the King of León, Ferdinand II. In 1174 it fell again into the hands of Abu Yaqub Yusuf, the third of the African Almohades; and was not recovered until 1214, when it was taken by Alfonso IX of León. To defend this conquest, on a border exposed to many assaults, the king resorted to military orders. The Middle Ages knew neither standing armies nor garrisons, a deficiency that the military orders supplied, combining as they did military training with monastic stability. In 1214 Alcántara was first committed to the care of the Castilian Knights of Calatrava, who had lately received great support after their performance in 1212 at the battle of Las Navas de Tolosa against the Almohades. Alonzo of León
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    Order of Leopold

    Order of Leopold

    • Founders: Francis II, Holy Roman Emperor
    The Imperial Austrian Order of Leopold was founded by Franz I of Austria on 8 January 1808. The order's statutes stipulated only three grades: Grand Cross, Commander and Knight. During the war, in common with the other Austro-Hungarian decorations Crossed Swords were instituted to reward bravery in the face of the enemy. An Imperial Decree of the 1 February 1901 ordered that in future the senior grade would be split into two separate awards and from then onwards there were four ranks: Grand Cross, First Class, Commander, Knight. Until the 18 July 1884 the award of the order had also entitled the recipient if he was not already of that standing, to be raised to the following appointments and or ranks of the nobility: Both the Grand Cross and the First Class Members of the Order wore on formal occasions their orders in the form a Sash with the Order attached to the Bow and respectively an eight pointed and a four pointed breast Star. The Grand Cross was somewhat larger than the First Class as was the width of the Sash. The Commanders' Cross was worn to the neck, suspended from a 52 mm wide ribbon; the Knight wore his Order on a triangular ribbon on the left breast. The actual Order
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    Order of Merit of the Police Forces

    The Order of Merit of the Police Forces (French: Ordre du mérite des corps policiers) is an honour for merit that is, within the Canadian system of honours, the only such fellowship reserved only for members of Canada's various police forces. Created in 2000, and administered by the Governor General-in-Council, on behalf of the Queen of Canada, appointment to the order recognizes conspicuous merit and exceptional service, the level of which reflected by the organization's three heirarchical grades. The Canadian Association of Chiefs of Police in 1996 approached the Chancellery of Honours at Rideau Hall to propose an order of merit for Canada's police forces, possibly modelled on the Order of Military Merit. This prompted the Solicitor General of Canada at the time, Herb Gray, to contact his provincial counterparts, inquiring of their reactions to the idea. As consent from the provincial governments was unanimous in its approval, the society was set up and officially implemented when, on 3 October 2000, Queen Elizabeth II applied the royal sign-manual to her letters patent constituting the Order of Merit of the Police Forces. The first induction ceremony for the order then took
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    Order of Michael the Brave

    Order of Michael the Brave

    The Order of Michael the Brave (Romanian: Ordinul Mihai Viteazul) is Romania's highest military decoration, instituted by King Ferdinand I during the early stages of the Romanian Campaign of World War I, and was again awarded in World War II. The Order, which may be bestowed as an individual medal or as a unit award, was named in honor of Michael the Brave (Mihai Viteazul), a late 16th century Prince of Wallachia, of Transylvania and of Moldavia. During World War II, at a time when Romania was allied with Germany (see Romania during World War II), the Order was awarded to several members of the Axis military forces:
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    Order of the British Empire

    Order of the British Empire

    • Founders: George V of the United Kingdom
    • Chivalric Titles: Knight Grand Cross of the Order of the British Empire
    The Most Excellent Order of the British Empire is an order of chivalry established on 4 June 1917 by King George V. The Order is composed of five classes in civil and military divisions. In descending order of seniority, these are: Only the highest two ranks automatically entitle its recipient to become a knight or dame, an honour allowing (but not prescribing) the postulant to use the title "Sir" (male) or "Dame" (female) before his or her first name (though men can be knighted separately from this and other Orders of Chivalry). Honorary knighthoods, given to individuals who are not nationals of a realm where Queen Elizabeth II is Head of State, permit use of the honour as a post-nominal but not as a title before their name. Awards in the Order of the British Empire in the Commonwealth Realms were discontinued with the establishment of national systems of honours and awards such as the Order of Canada, the Order of Australia and the New Zealand Order of Merit. Foreign recipients are classified as honorary members of the Order they receive, and do not contribute to the numbers restricted to that Order as full members do. There is also a related British Empire Medal, whose
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    Order of the Crown

    Order of the Crown

    The Order of the Crown (of Romania) is a chivalric order set up on 14 March 1881 by King Carol I of Romania to commemorate the establishment of the Kingdom of Romania. It was awarded as a state order until the end of the Romanian monarchy in 1947. It was revived in 2011 as a Dynastic Order. The order had five classes, most of them with limited numbers: The religious character of the model of 1881 is a red-enamelled, eight-pointed Maltese Cross with wider margin of gold and white. In the angles of the cross were "C"s, the initials of the founder. The medallion in the middle of the cross shows a royal crown on dark red background. The medallion is surrounded by a white-frost edge surrounded the inscription PRIN NOI INSINE (by ourselves) and the order's foundation date of 14 March 1881. On the back of the medallion is the day of the statute as well as the years 1866 (referendum), 1877 (complete Romanian independence), 1881 (proclamation of Carol as King of Romania). The Order's sash or ribbon is light blue with two silver stripes. Grand Cross members wore the decoration on a sash from the right shoulder to left waist, Grand Officers and Commanders around the neck and Knights and
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    Order of the Star of Romania

    Order of the Star of Romania

    The Order of the Star of Romania (Romanian: Steaua României or Ordinul Naţional "Steaua României" - National Order "Star of Romania") is Romania's highest civil order. It is awarded by the President of Romania. It has 6 ranks, from lowest to the highest: Knight (Cavaler), Officer (Ofiţer), Commodore or Commander (Comandor), Grand Officer (Mare Ofiţer), Grand Cross (Mare Cruce) and Sash (Colan). In 1863 Alexandru Ioan Cuza asked the Romanian representative to Paris to contact a well-known jewellery house, to manufacture a decoration. The Krétly House presented a model, immediately accepted by the domnitor, and based on his agreement, 1,000 pieces of the order would be made. It was established that the award would have five ranks: Knight (Cavaler), Officer (Ofiţer), Comandor (Comandor), Grand Officer (Mare Ofiţer), and Grand Cross (Mare Cruce). Unlike all the other projects of decorations, realized in the country, or inspired by the French Légion d'honneur, or by other orders that had as their insignia a Maltese cross, the model proposed by the Krétly house was a blue cross crosslet (cruce repetată), a design that, at that time, was not used before in decoration design. Cuza decided
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    Ancient Order of Turtles

    Ancient Order of Turtles

    The Ancient and Honorable Order of Turtles ("International Association of Turtles", "Turtle Club", or similar title) started as an informal "drinking club" between World War II pilots, self-described as "an honorable drinking fraternity composed of ladies and gentlemen of the highest morals and good character, who are never vulgar." To gain admission, one must answer four from a list of about twenty-five qualifying questions. Each question suggests a vulgar, lewd, or salacious answer, but the actual correct answer is rather innocuous. Once inducted, a member must reply to the question, "Are you a turtle?" with "You bet your sweet ass I am". Otherwise, the member must buy the questioner a drink. It is assumed that all prospective turtles own a diabetic donkey, or one of a sweet and kindly disposition, which is the reason for this password. If the member is unable or unwilling (perhaps because of the restriction on vulgarity) to provide the correct answer, he or she owes to each other turtle present a drink of the recipient's choice. The Supreme Imperial Turtle (Emeritus) of the "Ancient and Honorable Order of Turtles", Denis P. McGowan, says that his father was one of the
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    Honorary Order of the Palm

    Honorary Order of the Palm

    The Honorary Order of the Palm (Dutch: Ere-Orde van de Palm) is a military and civil state decoration of the Republic of Suriname. The Order was instituted in 1975 at the independence of Suriname and replaced the Dutch Order of Orange-Nassau. It is awarded to individuals for special service in the civil or military field. The order is also eligible for foreigners. The president of Suriname is the Grand Master of the order. The Honorary Order of the Palm has two divisions, civil and military, the latter denoted by crossed swords on both the badge and the star. The following five Classes exist, plus two medals: The Badge of the order exists of a gold gilt five-pointed star topped with a small balls, and gold gilt rays between the arms, resulting in a badge with the shape of a pentagon. The central disk shows the green palm of the Coat of arms of Suriname on white enamel, surrounded by a red enamel and gold edged ring displaying the motto in yellow (also from the Surinamese Coat of arms): JUSTITIA - PIETAS - FIDES ("Justice - Piety - Fidelity"). The military division has crossed swords placed on the badge. The Star of the Order is an eight-pointed gold gilt star with straight rays.
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    Ludwigsorden

    Ludwigsorden

    The "Ludwigsorden" (English:"Order of Louis"), was an order of the Grand Duchy of Hesse which was awarded to meritorious soldiers and civilians from 1807 to 1918. The order was founded by Louis I, Grand Duke of Hesse and by Rhine as an order of merit without name or statute on August 25, 1807. On December 14, 1831 statutes were adopted for the order, giving it its formal name, dividing it into five classes, and setting the terms for award. It was to be awarded to meritorious soldiers and civilians "von den obersten Stufe bis auf die unterste" (from the highest level to the lowest). The order became obsolete with the abdication of the last Grand Duke of Hesse in November 1918.
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    Order of Calatrava

    Order of Calatrava

    • Category: Military order
    The Order of Calatrava (Spanish: Orden de Calatrava) was the first military order founded in Castile, but the second to receive papal approval. The papal bull confirming the Order of Calatrava as a Militia was given by Pope Alexander III on September 26, 1164. It was founded at Calatrava la Vieja in Castile, in the twelfth century by St. Raymond of Fitero, as a military branch of the Cistercian family. The etymology of the name of this military order, Calatrava, conveys the meaning: "fortress of Rabah". In the Cistercian Order, then only recently formed (1098), there had been a large number of knights or sons of knights. In Calatrava, on the contrary, those who had been monks became knights. Monastic life has been called "a warfare", and it would be a mistake to suppose those rough medieval warriors sought in the cloister only a comfortable asylum after a troubled career. In both lives there was an heroic struggle to sustain, whether against one's passions or against the Muslims, and the austerities of an ascetic life could not have been more dreadful to them than the privations of camp life and the wounds of battle. These impetuous natures, who did nothing by halves, were eager to
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    Order of Culture

    Order of Culture

    • Category: Japanese Order
    • Chivalric Titles: Order of Culture
    The Order of Culture (文化勲章, Bunka-kunshō) is a Japanese order, established on February 11, 1937. The order has one class only, and may be awarded to men and women for contributions to Japan's art, literature or culture; recipients of the order also receive an annuity for life. The order is conferred by the Emperor of Japan in person on Culture Day (November 3) each year. The badge of the order, which is in gold with white enamel, is in the form of an mandarin orange blossom; the central disc bears three crescent-shaped jades (magatama). The badge is suspended on a gold and enamel wreath of mandarin orange leaves and fruit, which is in turn suspended on a purple ribbon worn around the neck. The order ranks between the Order of the Sacred Treasure, First Class and the Order of the Rising Sun, Double Rays (second class). The Order of Culture and Persons of Cultural Merit function together in honoring contributions to the advancement and development of Japanese culture in a variety of fields such as academia, arts and others. The Emperor himself presents the honor at the award ceremony, which takes place at the Imperial Palace on the Day of Culture (November 3). Candidates for the
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    Order of distinction

    Order of distinction

    The Order of Distinction is an award in the Jamaican honours system. It is the sixth in order of precedence of the Orders of Societies of Honour, which were instituted by an Act of Parliament (The National Honours and Awards Act) in 1968. The Motto of the Order is "Distinction Through Service". The Order of Distinction is conferred upon citizens of Jamaica who have rendered outstanding and important service to Jamaica, or to distinguished citizens of a country other than Jamaica. The former are made Members of the Order, and the latter Honorary Members. The Order has two ranks: the higher class of Commander, and the lower class of Officer. Commanders take place and precedence immediately after Members and Honorary Members of the Order of Jamaica. A Member or Honorary Member may be promoted from the rank of Officer to that of Commander. Commanders of the Order of Distinction are entitled to use the post-nominal letters CD in the case of Members, or CD (Hon.) in the case of Honorary Members. Officers of the Order of Distinction are entitled to use the post-nominal letters OD in the case of Members, or OD (Hon.) in the case of Honorary Members.
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    Order of Newfoundland and Labrador

    The Order of Newfoundland and Labrador is a civilian honour for merit in the Canadian province of Newfoundland and Labrador. Instituted in 2001, when Lieutenant Governor Arthur Maxwell House granted Royal Assent to the Order of Newfoundland and Labrador Act, the order is administered by the Governor-in-Council and is intended to honour current or former Newfoundland and Labrador residents for conspicuous achievements in any field, being thus described as the highest honour amongst all others conferred by the Newfoundland and Labrador Crown. The Order of Newfoundland and Labrador is intended to honour any current or former long time resident of Newfoundland and Labrador who has demonstrated a high level of individual excellence and achievement in any field, having "demonstrated excellence and achievement in any field of endeavour benefiting in an outstanding manner Newfoundland and Labrador and its residents." There are no limits on how many can belong to the order, though inductions are limited to eight per year; Canadian citizenship is a requirement, and those who are elected or appointed members of a governmental body are ineligible as long as they hold office. The process of
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    Order of Pius IX

    Order of Pius IX

    The Order of Pius IX (Italian: Ordine di Pio IX), also referred as the Pian Order (Italian: Ordine Piano), is a Papal order of knighthood founded on 17 June 1847 by Pope Pius IX. The Order comprises five classes: The decoration is a regular octagram made of blue enamel, the spaces between the rays filled with gold flames. On the white medallion in the center the name of the founder surrounded by the words Virtuti et Merito ("Virtue and Merit") is engraved. The reverse side is the same save for the substitution of Anno 1847 for Pius IX. The rarely worn official uniform consists of an elaborately embroidered dark blue evening coat with golden epaulettes, white trousers, and a white-plumed bicorne. Knights with the Collar wear a gold decorated chain around the neck, and a star on the left side of the breast; Knights Grand Cross wear a sash and a star on the left side of the breast; Commanders wear a cross around the neck; and Knights wear a smaller cross on the left breast of the uniform:
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    Order of Sikatuna

    The Order of Sikatuna (Filipino: Orden ni Sikatuna) is the national order of diplomatic merit of the Republic of the Philippines. It is conferred upon individuals who have rendered exceptional and meritorious services to the Republic of the Philippines, upon diplomats, officials and nationals of foreign states who have rendered conspicuous services in fostering, developing and strengthening relations between their country and the Philippines, or upon personnel of the Philippine Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA), both in the Home Office and in the Foreign Service. The Order of Sikatuna may be awarded by the Secretary of Foreign Affairs in the name and by authority of the President. It was created by Executive Order No. 571 signed by Pres. Elpidio Quirino on 27 February 1953. Section 2 of the E0 states, “The Order of Sikatuna...commemorates the first treaty (Pacto de Sangre) between the Philippines and a foreign country...” In the Quirino order, the Order of Sikatuna commemorates the pacto de sangre or blood compact, more popularly known as sandugo. This was, according to the Executive Order, the first international treaty of friendship between Bohol native chieftain, Datu Sikatuna
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    Order of the African Star

    Order of the African Star

    • Founders: Leopold II of Belgium
    The Order of the African Star (Dutch: Orde van de Afrikaanse Ster, French: Ordre de l'Étoile africaine) was established by King Leopold II of Belgium on 30 December 1888, in his capacity as ruler of the Congo Free State, and was awarded for services to Congo and for the "promotion of African civilisation in general". It was incorporated into the Belgian honours system on 10 October 1908 following the annexation of the Congo Free State by Belgium. The motto of the Order is "Travail et progrès" (French: Labour and progress). The King of the Belgians is its Grand Master. Even though Congo is no longer a Belgian colony, it is still considered to be a Belgian Order. The Order of the African Star is awarded by Royal Decree. Following the independence of Congo in 1960, the Order of the African Star is no longer awarded (although it still exists). The Order of the African Star is administered by the FPS Foreign Affairs and has five classes and three medals: The Badge of the order is a white enamelled five-pointed star with blue borders, surrounded by a crown of green enamelled palm leafs. The central disk shows a gold star on blue enamelled background surrounded by a gold ring displaying
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    Order of the Companions of O. R. Tambo

    The Order of the Companions of O. R. Tambo is a South African honour. It was instituted on 6 December 2002, and is granted by the president of South Africa, to foreign citizens who have promoted South African interests and aspirations through co-operation. solidarity, and support. The order has three classes: The order is named after the late Oliver Tambo, who was the African National Congress's president-in-exile for many years. The badge of the order is oval, and depicts a symbol similar to that of the Taijitu between two arrowheads, framed by two mole snakes. The symbol represents the meeting of diverse spiritual energies, and the snakes represent solidarity and support. The South African coat of arms is displayed on the reverse. The ribbon is white, with recurring grey symbols down the centre. All three classes are worn around the neck. Recipients are also presented with a carved wooden walking stick, which has a serpent wound around the shaft and a spoon-shaped head displaying the badge of the order and the national arms. The walking stick symbolises support and solidarity, and a commitment to stand by the recipient in return. On January 28, 2008, New Zealand anti-apartheid
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    Order of the Crescent

    Order of the Crescent

    • Category: Confraternal Order
    • Founders: Selim III
    • Chivalric Titles: Knight of the Imperial Order of the Crescent
    The Imperial Order of the Crescent (Ottoman Turkish - Hilal Nişanı) was a chivalric order of the Ottoman Empire. It was instituted in 1799 by Sultan Selim III when he wished to reward Horatio Nelson, an Anglican Christian, for his victory at the Battle of the Nile. All the existing Ottoman orders could not be awarded to non-Muslims, and so Selim specially created the Order of the Crescent as a one-off for Nelson, making him its first Knight and sending him the insignia in August 1799. (He also rewarded Nelson with the separate award of the chelengk.) The Order was then extended to reward further the British military success on land and sea against Napoleon's forces in Egypt and the Eastern Mediterranean in 1801. Nelson was proud of his award - he appended it to his name in the Articles of Capitulation with Denmark after the Battle of Copenhagen on 9 April 1801 (news of which appending so pleased the Sultan that he added a ribbon and gold medal to Nelson's star). However, the British Royal Warrant at the College of Arms allowing him to wear it is only dated 20 March 1802. Nelson also constantly wore a replica of his Order of the Crescent on his British naval uniform coats, though on
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    Order of the Dragon

    Order of the Dragon

    • Category: Monarchical Order
    • Founders: Sigismund, Holy Roman Emperor
    The Order of the Dragon (Latin: Societas Draconistrarum, lit. "Society of the Dragon") was a monarchical chivalric order for selected nobility, founded in 1408 by Sigismund, King of Hungary (r. 1387-1437) and later Holy Roman Emperor (r. 1433-1437). It was fashioned after the military orders of the Crusades, requiring its initiates to defend the cross and fight the enemies of Christianity, in particular the Ottoman Turks. The Order flourished during the first half of the 15th century, primarily in Germany and Italy. After Sigismund's death in 1437 its importance declined in Western Europe, but after the Fall of Constantinople of 1453, it continued to play a role in Hungary, Bulgaria, Wallachia and Serbia, which bore the brunt of the Ottoman incursions. Sigismund faced fierce struggles for power leading up to the foundation of the order in 1408. In 1387, the Bohemian royal son Sigismund of Luxembourg was elected King of Hungary a title which he owed chiefly to his marriage to Queen Mary of Hungary in 1385, without her consent. During the next decade, he constantly sought support or employed ruthless methods to strengthen his unsteady hold on the throne. His rule was weakened in 1395
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    Order of the Golden Spur

    Order of the Golden Spur

    • Category: Honorific Order
    The Order of the Golden Spur (Italian: Ordine dello Speron d'Oro, French: Ordre de l’Éperon d’or), officially known also as the Order of the Golden Militia (Latin: Ordo Militia Aurata,Italian: Milizia Aurata), is a Papal Order of Chivalry conferred upon those who have rendered distinguished service in propagating the Catholic faith, or who have contributed to the glory of the Church, either by feat of arms, by writings, or by other illustrious acts. It is accounted the earliest papal chivalric institution. The Order of the Golden Spur had its origins in the title Count palatine of the Lateran Palace, which was in the gift of the Holy Roman Emperor in the fourteenth century: Charles IV, Holy Roman Emperor conferred the title on one Fenzio di Albertino di Prato, 15 August 1357, at Prague. The Order began to be associated with the inheritable patent of nobility in the form of count palatinate during the Renaissance; Emperor Frederick III named Baldo Bartolini, professor of civil law at the University of Perugia, a count palatinate in 1469, entitled in turn to confer university degrees. "Bartolini also received the Knighthood of the Golden Spur, a title that sometimes accompanied the
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    Order of the Karađorđe's Star

    Order of the Star of Karađorđe (Serbian: Orden Karađorđeve zvezde, Орден Карађорђеве звезде) is the decoration established in Serbia in 1 January 1904 by King Peter I. It was awarded in four degrees. The military version was established 28 May 1915 (Order of the Karađorđe's Star with Swords). This decoration was awarded to the city of Belgrade on May 18, 1939. The decoration was discontinued in the Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia, established after World War II, and reestablished in Serbia in 2009.
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    Order of the Paulownia Flowers

    Order of the Paulownia Flowers

    The Order of the Paulownia Flowers (桐花章, Tōka shō) is an order presented by the Japanese Government. Established in 1888 during the Meiji Restoration as the highest award in the Order of the Rising Sun; however, since 2003 it has been an Order in its own right. The only grade of the order is Grand Cordon of the Order of the Paulownia Flowers (旭日桐花大綬章, Kyokujitsu tōka daijushō), which ranks higher than the Order of the Rising Sun but lower than the Order of the Chrysanthemum. The badge for the Order is a gilt cross with white enameled rays, bearing a central emblem of a red enameled sun disc surrounded by red rays, and with three paulownia blossoms between each arm of the cross. It is suspended from three enameled paulownia leaves on a sash in red with white border stripes, and is worn on the right shoulder. The star for the Order is the same as the badge, but without the paulownia leaves suspension. It is worn on the left chest. Information from the corresponding article in the Japanese Wikipedia Information from the corresponding article in the Japanese Wikipedia
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    Order of the Phoenix

    The Order of the Phoenix (Greek: Τάγμα του Φοίνικος) is an order of Greece, established on May 13, 1926, by the republican government of the Second Hellenic Republic to replace the defunct Royal Order of George I. The Order was retained by the revived Monarchy after 1935, and continues to be awarded by the current Third Republic. The Order is bestowed by the Greek government to Greek citizens who have excelled in the arts and literature, science, public administration, shipping, commerce, and industry. It is also awarded to foreigners who have helped raise Greece's international prestige. The Order has five classes: The badge of the Order is a white-enameled cross, in silver for the Silver Cross class, in gold for the higher classes, with the Phoenix (symbolizing the rebirth of the Hellenic nation) at the centre. A five-pointed star is at the upper arm of the cross. The first version of the Order (1926–1935) featured the letters "E-T-T-A" in Byzantine uncial on each arm of the cross, the initials of the motto Εκ της τέφρας μου αναγεννώμαι ("From my ashes I am reborn"). During the Monarchy (1935–1974) the letters were removed and the badge was topped by a crown, while the badge's
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    Order of the White Rose of Finland

    The Order of the White Rose of Finland (Finnish: Suomen Valkoisen Ruusun ritarikunta; Swedish: Finlands Vita Ros orden) is one of three official orders in Finland, along with the Order of the Cross of Liberty, and the Order of the Lion of Finland. The President of Finland is the Grand Master of all three orders. The orders are administered by boards consisting of a chancellor, a vice-chancellor and at least four members. The orders of the White Rose of Finland and the Lion of Finland have a joint board. The Order of the White Rose of Finland was established by Gustaf Mannerheim in his capacity as regent (temporary head of state) on January 28, 1919. The name comes from the nine roses argent in the coat of arms of Finland. The order's rules and regulations were confirmed on May 16, 1919, and its present rules date from June 1, 1940. The revised scale of ranks was confirmed most recently in 1985. The original decorations were designed by Akseli Gallen-Kallela. The swastikas of the collar was replaced by fir crosses in 1963, designed by heraldic artist Gustaf von Numers. The honour can be granted for military as well as civilian merit. The ribbon for all classes is ultramarine. The
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    Royal Family Order of King George V

    The Royal Family Order of King George V was a high honour bestowed as a mark of personal esteem on titled female members of the British Royal Family for personal service to King George V. Queen Elizabeth II is the only surviving member of the Order. King George V's Royal Family Order was awarded in classes and had a pale blue colour.
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    Tamgha-i-Imtiaz

    Tamgha-i-Imtiaz (Urdu: تمغہ امتیاز), English: Medal of Excellence, is state organized honour of State of Pakistan. It is the fourth-highest decoration given to any civilian in Pakistan based on their achievements. While, it is civilian award, it can also be bestowed to Military officers of the Pakistan Armed Forces and worn in the uniform. The award is not limited to the citizens of Pakistan, and can be awarded to foreign citizens who have done great services to Pakistan. It is the lowest but restricted award only conferred to individuals who have accomplished duty beyond what is assigned to him/her. It is awarded for distinguished merit in the fields of literature, arts, sports, medicine, music or science for civilians, strictly based on their achievements that caused world recognition of Pakistan. Parliament's committee for Award and Recognition Services for State of Pakistan, selected the names of individuals and sent final report to Prime minister of Pakistan. On advice of Prime minister, the President organized the colorful ceremony that is telecast and broadcast by the PTV. Like other awards, it is given in isolation, not in group, because the whole purpose of the award is to
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