The Most Distinguished Order of Saint Michael and Saint George, Mantle Star
Image courtesy of Nicholas Jackson, Wikipedia
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The Most Distinguished Order of Saint Michael and Saint George was established by the Prince Regent in the name of King George III in 1818. It was created to recognize subjects of Malta and the Ionian Islands, which had come under the control of the United Kingdom following the end of the Napoleonic Wars. After the Ionian Islands were ceded to the United Kingdom in 1864, the Order was extended to the rest of the British Empire in 1868.
It is currently conferred upon citizens of the United Kingdom in recognition of meritorious overseas service, including diplomatic service. It is conferred as a personal gift of the Sovereign on the recommendation of the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs. Members of the Royal Family may also be admitted to the Order, although they are not counted towards the statutory limits of Knights and Dames, as well as foreigners who may only be admitted as “Honorary Members.” Women have been admitted to the Order since 1964.
There is a current limit of 125 Knights or Dames Grand Cross, 375 Knights or Dames Commander, and 1750 Companions. Knights or Dames Grand Cross are entitled to use the post-nominal letters GCMG, Knights or Dames Commander are entitled to use the post-nominal letters KCMG or DCMG, and Companions are entitled to use the post-nominal letters CMG. Members of the first and second classes are also entitled to use the formal title “Sir” or “Dame.”
The motto of the Order is AUSPICIUM MELIORIS AEVI (“Token of a Better Age”).
The Mantle Star is worn by Knights or Dames Grand Cross on formal occasions along with a mantle and collar.
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