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Gentleman's Military Interest Club

new world

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  1. Only 1st and 3rd classes had green enamel from 1908. Other classes did not change.
  2. Wow, that star is unbelievable!!! C&M cross for sale is clearly different from the one which belong to Ferdinand - the way the flames are made and the portraits of the saints, etc. Still, there are some similarities, for example arms of the cross. These could be from the same jeweler, just made at different times.
  3. It looks like it, but why does it have Bulgarian crown on top? It's certainly crown from St Alexander cross with diamonds on a foreign chain/collar and hanging from it is Cross of Constantinian Order. What exactly this construct is and why is old Ferdinand wearing it? I am sure he knows it's wrong...
  4. I find this photo very interesting! This is supposedly one of the last photos of Ferdinand, taken in exile in Koburg in 1941-42. 1. In position #1 - middle award on the left side looks like Cyril & Methodius star with diamonds. I don't think we ever saw this star before. 2. In position #2 is Cyril & Methodius cross with diamonds and precious stones, which looks exactly like the one currently for sale by a major dealer (photo attached). 3. In position #3 is foreign award, which is attached to the Bulgarian style crown (of St Alexander order?), on the neck chain. I am not sure why he wears it in such manner, perhaps he lost cross of St Alexander and put foreign award in it's place. Any ideas here?
  5. Nice example! Some authors of books on Bulgarian awards call these transitional crosses, which were made following change of the crown design. Supposedly these were manufactured by using previously made incomplete early cross bases and combining them with new style crowns. Same firm Shwerdtner was making both Knyaz (for Civil Merit awards) and Tsar (for Military Merit awards) crowns during the same period in late 1800s and first decade of 1900s. The are quite rare!
  6. This is very interesting indeed! Do you have more photos showing Tsar crown on awards before 1908? While these are real cases, I believe these were rather exceptions than common practice. From two examples of yours we see top ranking and wealthy people wearing such type of crown (Princess for sure - she could get whatever she wanted, and top General to some extend). These could be privately made examples, where owners of the awards specifically ordered such type of crown, perhaps even driven by fashion and desire to look different. I am convinced that majority of St Alexander awards followed 1908 separation milestone, when the change of the crown took place. Quite the opposite, that Statute proves there was no Grand Cross before 1908. It clearly states that there were only 5 classes, starting from the 1st and through the 5th. There is no Grand Cross class, it was officially added only in 1908. People tend to be confused by semantics of the names, such as Big Cross (1st class) or Big Officer (2nd class). If you read carefully in Paragraph 4, there is no separate Grand Cross class in the statute from 1896.
  7. I am not sure what you mean by saying this is both 1st and Grand class. Looking at the Tsar crown - the cross is from 1908 and after, when 1st class with green enamel was introduced. White cross before 1908 had Knyaz crown and that was 1st class then. There was no Grand Cross before 1908. Therefore this 1908 cross in question is higher class - it's Grand cross.
  8. The box would look similar to these photos. The crest on top would have princely rounded crown though, not the later tsar crown: as is seen in your next photo:
  9. hi Graf, I don't believe that was the mark from the star. What is shown - just a fragment of the pin, there is no full shot of the reverse of the star. That mark looks like it is by C.F. Rothe, Wien, which is of course Austro-Hungarian manufacturer. However, in the description this set is noted as French made: 'Sash Badge, 60 mm, gilt silver, pale blue enameled arms with finely outlined border, the medallion's outer circlet with dark blue enameled "EX ORIENTE LUX" motto and centre in the finest enamel miniature painting, red enameled fl ames superimposed by gilt fl eurs de lys, the reverse centre's outer circlet with dark blue enameled "XVIII - MAJUS MDCCCCIX" the medallion with bright red translucent enamel on chiseled ground and gilt Royal Cipher, typical suspension loop and original, light orange silk sash. Breast Star, 77 mm, silver, with chiseled and pierced rays, red enameled, gold "seraphim" centre (the face, in the best enamel miniature painting, minor chip), red enameled, gold fl ames, superimposed by fl eurs de lys, plain reverse with rivets, screws and pin. An outstandingly rare, original group of French manufacture, in extremely fine condition! IRR!' CF Rothe was maker of official classic C&M awards. Also, it's a bit strange mark, as two stamps appear to be swapped - 'Wien' is before 'C.F. Rothe'. On the awards I've seen it's always other way around - 'C.F. Rothe' before 'Wien'. This could indicate fake mark, as seen on some counterfeit awards.
  10. Graf, thanks! I remember seeing Kretly star. I've noticed that star in pic #4 has a motto on the circle, while other stars don't. I am curious to know if that's a period variation or later modification.
  11. 922F - excellent follow-up, I didn't expect so much information on this award! So, this is from Bulgarian Catholic Church, not Bulgarian Orthodox Church? I wasn't award Catholic Church had any significant influence in Bulgaria, as Bulgarians are mostly Orthodox. SS Cyril and Methodius are also orthodox saints, curious to see how they are connected to Catholics? Unfortunately the set is not mine, another collector showed me the photos.
  12. Serbia - Royal Household medal

    Lovely medal and is very rare! Nice find!
  13. name of Bulgarian order

    That's modern Bulgarian award, established after People's Republic. Did you friend receive award document with it?
  14. Interesting discovery!
  15. Yugoslavian Partisan Stars

    Excellent work Eric! Thank you for doing so!