Honour Decoration, I Division
Image courtesy of Auction House Andreas Thies
Estimated market value:
A smooth oval medal with a raised edge, constructed of silver. The obverse features the right-facing portrait of former Grand Duchess Maria Paulovna with the circular inscription ‘MARIA PAWLOWNA GROSSHERZ. V. SACHSEN GROSSF. V. RUSSLAND’ with a small six-sided star at the bottom. Around the inscription is a pearled line. The reverse features the crowned intertwined monogram ‘CAS’ (the S is pearled) with the semi-circular inscription ‘FÜR FRAUEN-VERDIENST’ at the bottom. On a loop for suspension, on a red ribbon with yellow borders.
Specimens in silvered metals are known to exist and were likely produced after 1916.
The Honour Decoration for Women was instituted by Grand Duke Carl Alexander of Saxony on December 31, 1899, in memory and recognition of his mother, Grand Duchess Maria Paulovna, and his late wife, Grand Duchess Sophie. It was awarded to women for meritorious services to the state or their fellow citizens, usually in some sort of charitable organisation. The 1st division decoration was awarded for 20 years as part of such an organisation, the 2nd division for 30 years, and the 3rd division for 40 years.
If a recipient received a higher division, the lower division decoration had to be returned. The decoration also had to be returned upon the death of the recipient, however, the family could ask for the decoration to be given to a local church for safe-keeping instead.
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