Cross of Valour, Cross in Gold
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The Cross of Valour was established as an Order by the law of May 13, 1913, although it was not officially confirmed by Royal Decree until 1921. It was suppressed two years later, but it was re-instated as a military decoration shortly after the outbreak of the Second World War. It was the highest ranking war decoration in Greece until 1974 when it was superseded by the Medal for Gallantry.
The Cross is awarded to Greek military personnel for acts of gallantry in combat, as well as to Greek citizens and foreigners for contributions to the safety and security of Greece. A ribbon clasp is awarded to denote each additional act of bravery. From 1913-1923, the clasps were small silver stars, and since 1940, they have been small silver crowns.
There are three different versions of the decorations. The first version was awarded from 1921-1923 and features a surmounting royal crown. The second version was awarded during the Second World War and is identical to the first version except for the addition of a bronze "1940" clasp on the ribbon of two lowest grades. The third version, awarded after 1974, was not actually finalised until the 2000s. It features a surmounting national emblem instead of a surmounting royal crown. All versions feature a reverse inscription that translates to "For Merit."
There may be additional versions of the Gold Cross that differ in composition, size, and manufacturer.
It should be noted that the Cross of Valour of the Royal Gendarmerie (GRC154) is identical to the version issued in 1940 and only differs in the number of stripes on the ribbon.
This version does not have enamel on the obverse medallion.
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