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The Royal Order of the Polar Star
Nordstjärneorden
Nordstj.jpg
Cross and star of the order
Awarded by Commandsign King of Sweden.svg The Monarch of Sweden
Type Five grade order of merit
Motto Nescit Occasum
Day 28 April
Eligibility Until 1975: Swedish and foreign persons
Since 1975: Foreign citizens and members of the Swedish Royal Family
Awarded for Until 1975: Civic merits, for devotion to duty, for science, literary, learned and useful works and for new and beneficial institutions.
After 1975: Services to Sweden
Status Currently constituted
Grand Master His Majesty King Carl XVI Gustaf of Sweden
Chancellor Ingemar Eliasson
Grades (w/ post-nominals) Commander Grand Cross (KmstkNO)
Commander 1st Class (KNO1kl)
Commander 2nd Class (KNO2kl)
Knight 1st Class (RNO1kl)
Knight (RNO)
Established 1748
First induction 1748
Precedence
Next (higher) The Royal Order of the Seraphim
Next (lower) The Royal Order of the Sword
Order of the Polar Star - Ribbon bar, pre 1975.svg
1748 - 1975
Order of the Polar Star - Ribbon bar.svg
1975 - present
Ribbon bars of the order
Collar of the Order of the Polar Star and the star of the order

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, and can still be 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. Women and clergy men are not called knight or commander but simply as Member (Ledamot).

After the reorganization of the orders in 1975 the order is only awarded to foreigners and members of the royal family. It is often awarded to foreign office holders (such as Prime and Senior Ministers) during Swedish state visits.

Contents

Grades

The Order currently has five degrees:

  • Commander Grand Cross (KmstkNO) - Wears the badge on a collar (chain) or on a sash on the right shoulder, plus the star on the left chest;
  • Commander 1st Class (KNO1kl) - Wears the badge on a necklet, plus the star on the left chest;
  • Commander (KNO) - Wears the badge on a necklet;
  • Knight 1st Class (RNO1kl/LNO1kl*) - Wears the badge on a ribbon on the left chest;
  • Knight (RNO/LNO*) - Wears the badge on a ribbon on the left chest.
  • *Priests and women become ledamöter (Members) instead of knights.

This order also has a medal, "the Polar Star Medal".

Insignia

  • The collar of the Order is in gold, consists of seven white-enamelled five-pointed star and seven crowned back-to-back monogram "F" (for King Frederick I of Sweden) in blue enamel, joined by chains.
  • The badge of the Order is a white enamelled Maltese Cross, in silver for the Officer class and in gilt for Officer 1st Class and above; crowns appear between the arms of the cross. The central disc, which is identical on both sides, is in blue enamel, with a white-enamelled five-pointed star surrounded by the motto "Nescit occasum" (It knows no decline). The badge is topped by a crown.
  • The star of the Order is a silver Maltese Cross, with a silver five-pointed star at the centre. That of Grand Cross also has straight silver rays between the arms of the cross.
  • the ribbon of the Order is black, this colour was chosen so that the white cross would stand in stark contrast to the black; since 1975 the ribbon is blue with yellow edges.

External links

References

  • (Swedish) Per Nordenvall, Kungliga Serafimerorden 1748–1998. Stockholm : Kungl. Maj:ts orden, 1998. ISBN 978-91-630-6744-0
  • (Swedish) Royal Court of Sweden, www.royalcourt.se
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