Albert Order, Type II, Military Division, II Class Commander (with swords on ring 1879-1918)

CATEGORY: Version

SKU: 01.SXK.0108.206.01.003

Estimated market value:

$2,450 USD

  • Albert Order, Type II, Military Division, II Class Commander (with swords on ring 1879-1918)
  • Albert Order, Type II, Military Division, II Class Commander (with swords on ring 1879-1918)
  • Albert Order, Type II, Military Division, II Class Commander (with swords on ring 1879-1918) Reverse

Estimated market value:

$2,450 USD

Attributes

  • Country
    Germany
  • Composition
    Silver gilt/Enamelled
  • Inscription
    Obv: ALBERTUS ANIMOSUS Rev: 1850
  • Size
    54mm
  • Version Remarks
    The Type II awards feature the “Hinged Cap” or “Young Portrait” medallion. The Type II awards were amended on January 1, 1876.

Physical Description and Item Details


Saxony, Kingdom. An Albrecht Order Commander's Badge, by G.A. Scharffenberg, c.1914

(Albrechtsorden Komturkreuz mit Schwertern); 1879-1918 Issue. A silver gilt Latin cross with white enameled arms, with a green enameled oak wreath; the obverse with a central white enameled medallion depicting a rightward facing bust of Herzog Albrecht, surrounded by a blue enameled ring, inscribed “Albertus Animous” (Latin - Albert the Merciful), along with arabesques towards the bottom of the enameled ring; the reverse with a white enameled central medallion depicting the Saxon coat of arms, surrounded by a blue enameled ring with arabesques on the top, and “1850” on the bottom; suspended from a set of crossed swords, a hollow swivel crown, as well as a round and broad loop for suspension from a period original neck ribbon; the bottom of the six o’clock arm marked “S” for “G. A. Scharffenberg, the 9 o’clock arm marked “Dresden”, and the 3 o’clock arm depicting filing marks; measuring 53.91 mm (w) x 95.55 mm (h); weighing 50.6 grams; in overall extremely fine condition.

History


The Royal Saxon Order of Albrecht was created on December 31, 1850 by King Frederick Augustus II of Saxony, in commemoration of the 350th anniversary of the death of his predecessor Duke Albert III, also known as Albert the Bold. It was awarded to those who remained loyal to the revolution of 1848 and at the Dresden May Uprising of 1849, and served the state well for civil virtue, science and art.

The Order was designed with Christian iconography in mind. The center medallion was believed to be the bust of the founder of the Albertinien family line, Albert the stout-hearted. However, it was, by mistake, Albert the Perennial, which resulted in the modelling to be changed in 1876.

At its conception, the Order comprised five classes: Grand Cross, I Class Commander, II Class Commander, Knight and Small Cross.

On March 18, 1858, the Small Cross was renamed the “Honour Cross” to improve the reputation of the class. In 1861, a gold and silver merit medal were added to the Order.

In conjunction with the Austro-Prussian war, a merit cross with swords was added in 1866, and this was extended in December 1870 to have swords on the ring. According to the statutes, for those in the field earned merit and as a military award to people who already are in possession of the same order and the same class are found without war decorations, the swords will be added to the ring under the crown.When a higher order in the civil division was presented to a recipient who holds a lower class with swords, the swords will be added to the ring of the higher civil division decoration.

Profound restructuring to the order occurred in 1876. The Medals were abolished and the Knight was split into a I Class and II Class. In 1884, a gold Great Cross” was added and in June 1890, the Officer’s Cross was inserted into the Order between the II Class Commander and the I Class knight. Saxony was a pioneer in the German states for the integration of this class. More importantly, the bust was changed to feature a young portrait with a hinged cap.

In 1893, it was decided that the Grand Cross could be awarded with a golden star. In July 1901, the Knight I Class with Crown was added as its own class between the Officer’s Cross and the Knight I Class.

In 1906, all Saxon orders began allowing swords on the ring. Swords on the ring were a sign for an award of bravery in a lower grade of the same order, however they often came at a cost paid by the recipient.

Until 1916, the orders were awarded as follows (with exceptions):
Grand Cross: Generals of the Inf.pp and lieutenant generals
Commander I Class: major general
Commander II Class: colonel
Officer’s Cross: Lieutenant colonels
Knight I Class: majors and captains
Knight II Class: first lieutenants, lieutenants
Medal: NCO and enlisted men

After 1916, the orders were awarded as follows (with exceptions):
Grand Cross with Gold Star: generals of the Inf.pp in command
Grand Cross: Generals of the Inf.pp who do not command, and older lieutenant generals
Commander I Class: young Lieutenants, and senior major generals
Commander II Class: younger major generals, elderly colonels
Officer’s Cross: younger colonels, senior lieutenant colonels
Knight I Class with Crown: senior lieutenant colonels
Knight I Class: majors, captains
Knight II Class: first lieutenants, lieutenants

“Older” officers were understood to be those who were at least two years in the relevant rank.

This Order was the most commonly awarded order of Saxony. The Civil Division and Military Division should be equal in rank. Recipients of both a civil and military division decoration could wear both side by side.

The Order became obsolete in 1918.

Manufacturers of the Type I decorations include Mortiz Elimeyer, Gustav Adolph Scharffenberg and Christian Friedrich Rothe. Manufacturers of the Type II decorations include Scharffenberg, Alfred Roesner, Glaser & Sohne, and Rothe. Godet was not an official supplier of the Order, but was used as often as Rothe for Specially made decorations.

The Type I awards are known as the "Baker Cap" Type and the Type II awards are known as the "Hinged Cap" or "Young Portrait" Type. The Type II awards were amended on January 1, 1876.

The I Class Commander and II Class Commander grades had the same size and composition, the main difference between the two grades was that the I Class Commander was awarded with a I Class Commander Breast Star.

The Type II, II Class Commander with Swords was awarded 238 times. 218 of these awards were conferred between 1914-1918. Four were made of gold and 234 were silver gold-plated.

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