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Venezuela Order of the Bust of Bolivar - Question

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Since we are awaiting information from Michael on rosettes for the Orden del Libertador (there are apparently new details of the ribbon bars on the Condecoraciones de Venezuela website, but they all illustrate miniature badge devices for the Gran Collar, 1st, 2nd, and 3rd classes and a rosette only for the bar of the 4th class, with a plain tricolored ribbon bar for the 5th class), I thought I would add these additional images of rosettes (to complement what Uwe contributed on 10 February, and mine from 12, February) that I came across recently from a frontiernet.net sales catalog of rosettes from 25 December, 2013, updated and © by Eric Bush on 28 February, 2014 (http://www.frontiernet.net/~jackiebush/Rosette/New Folder/new_additions.html). I'm afraid these reiterate a bit of ambiguity about rosettes.  


Venezuela clutch-back (CB) rosettes for the Orden del Liberator from 2013 sales catalog of frontiernet.net. The additional devices on the rosettes we've been calling "bands" are here identified as "wings". Rather than silver (3rd class according to the Wikipedia guide Uwe illustrated on 10 February), the 2 center variants are identified as white. The guide I illustrated on 12 February may show white as the band for the 4th class rosette. Can anyone explain the use of the variant double bordered rosette shown above 2nd from R? 


Venezuela buttonhole (BH) rosettes for the Orden del Libertador from 2013 sales catalog of frontiernet.net. This version appears to identify a silver band on the center rosette, and the gold band 2nd from R, that is double bordered rosette. Any suggestions about the color scheme for the "early" version on the far R?


Venezuela ribbon bar rosettes with string on back to mount on ribbon bars for the Orden del Libertador from 2013 sales catalog of frontiernet.net, again showing a double bordered rosette at L. 


Rosettes for the Orden del Libertador from Index of /~jackiebush/Rosette/Blue (http://www.frontiernet.net/~jackiebush/Rosette/Blue/V_OOL_Rosette4.jpg). They appear to show upper L = 1st class (gold band); upper R = 3rd class in a double bordered rosette version (white or silver band?; or silver & gold band? = 2nd class?); lower L = 3rd class (silver  or white band?); and 4th class (rosette without band), following the Wikipedia ribbon guide provided by Uwe on 10 February. There are a couple illustrations of individual rosettes that may have silver bands (appearing more silver than the "white" of lower L and upper R rosettes shown here) from this index as well, but as single photos, they have minimal info to be useful in providing  a guide to rosette forms. 

Edited by Rusty Greaves

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Hello friends
Sorry for the delay in answering but I’ve been traveling a lot lately for work. Regarding the ribbon bars there have been a lot of confusion.
The Order was created in 1881 comprising:
•    Medal (single version for all classes) 
•    Breast Star (two version, one for 1st and 2nd and other for 3rd class)
•    Rosette (single version for all classes)
The first big reform was in 1922, and among the modifications we can found:
•    Introduction of the Collar
•    Enlarge the diameter of the medal from 35mm to 52mm
•    A different Breast Star for each of the first 3 classes 
•    Introduction of a unique ribbon bar for each class (according to the image)
But no reference was included regarding the Rosette since a single version (same design) remain for all classes and even though was quite common to find them, no reference on the Miniature and its characteristics was introduced in the regulation.
it would not be until 2006 that the order was again reform and for the first time in more than a 100 year that the miniature was include together with separate version for rosette according to each class. This absence of regulation, during that much time made that the definition of the designs for the rosettes and miniatures was up to the criteria of the manufacturers resulting is a great deal of versions and that’s the reason for the confusion, but this how it supposed to be:


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Despite having a clear regulation, there have been some acceptance by the authorities for an alternative variety of ribbon bar for the collar and 1st class:


In relation to Eric Bush's models, keep in mind that most of his inventory related to Venezuela were part of the liquidation after NS Meyer closed operations, therefore not all pieces “circulated” … There are several that could be samples or proposals from the manufacturer or even rejected parts from the recipient (Gov. of Venezuela) and I believe this is the case with the white band devices… I bought form Erick some of his pieces and they are actually white instead of silver, but I have never seen any of these in sets of the Order officially delivered. Same with the “double bordered rosette” (RF32 & RF111d) this is the rosette for the 4th class but comes without any wings as showed in RFR34.

About the sizes, again was very much up to de manufacture choice, early rosette where bigger than modern ones, but no as small as the RF111a of 6mm, this was probably use in miniature and not as lapel rosette.    

Regarding the color scheme for the "early" version (RF112) I also have it and is 100% orange instead of red… I don’t believe is Venezuelan and if it is maybe a proposal for the Army Cross… how knows.

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Michael, Many thanks for additional clarification of ribbons, rosettes, and the variation found in the illustrations of rosettes I posted on March 10. This is very interesting and useful information, I am endebted for your knowledge and generosity in sharing this information. 

Linking to the theme of the miniature medals of this order, and to complement Uwe's illustration of the 3rd Class Comendador (Commander) on 21 January, I have a few additional internet images of sets of the 5th Class Caballero, Orden del Libertador illustrating the miniature medals and one of the 2nd Class, Gran Oficial:


Presentation case for the Venezuelan Orden del Liberator, 5th Class, Caballero (Knight) from the todocoleccion auction website. The image of the horse in the Venezuelan Coat of arms indicates that this predates ~March 2006. This form of the horse, running to the viewers' right and looking over its haunches to the left (heraldry orientation is however referent to the shields' not the viewers' perspective), was replaced with the horse running & facing to the viewers' left (heraldy's right). Somewhat apocryphally, a common story about the design change is that Hugo Chávez initiated legislation for the re-desing of the horse's position in response to a comment made by his daughter, Rosinés Chávez Rodrígues, that the horse appeared to be "looking backward". Two other design changes also were made: 1). apparently to symbolize peasant fighting forces a machete was substituted for the saber in the viewer's upper right quadrant, and 2). and a stylized set of bow & arrows in a quiver were placed with the central lance to recognize Venezuela's indigenous heritage (although the bows & arrows used European design conventions and look nothing like indigenous Venezuelan bows & arrows). (https://www.todocoleccion.net/militaria-medallas/condecoracion-orden-libertador-simon-bolivar-5-clase-5-piezas-extinta-caballero~x89079046)


post-2006 re-design of the Venezuelan coat of arms showing the changes discussed in the caption above. (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Coat_of_arms_of_Venezuela#/media/File:Escudo_de_Armas_de_Venezuela_2006.png)


Venezuelan coat of arms 1954-2006 fore comparison with the 2006 design changes. (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Coat_of_arms_of_Venezuela#/media/File:Escudo_Nacional_de_Venezuela_(1954-2006).png)


Image from todocoleccion auction website of the Venezuelan Orden del Liberator, 5th Class Caballero (Knight) in its presentation case. This image illustrates the obverse of the full-sized medal showing the bust of Simon Bolivar, miniature medal, ribbon bar, and rosette. (https://www.todocoleccion.net/militaria-medallas/condecoracion-orden-libertador-simon-bolivar-5-clase-5-piezas-extinta-caballero~x89079046)


Image from todocoleccion auction website of the Venezuelan Orden del Liberator, 5th Class Caballero (Knight) in its presentation case. This image illustrates the reverse of the full-sized medal, miniature medal showing the Venezuelan coat of arms, ribbon bar, and rosette. As noted above, although the low resolution images makes details hard to see, the position of the horse indicates this predates ~March 2006. (https://www.todocoleccion.net/militaria-medallas/condecoracion-orden-libertador-simon-bolivar-5-clase-5-piezas-extinta-caballero~x89079046)


Higher resolution image from the  "Mi collection personal de medalles civiles y militaries" section of the La Segunda Guerra website (lasegundaguerra.com) showing the Venezuelan Orden del Libertador, 5th Class, Caballero (Knight), also showing the full-sized medal, miniature medal, ribbon bar, and rosette. (http://www.lasegundaguerra.com/viewtopic.php?f=71&t=116913)


Illustration from the todocoleccion auction website of the Venezuelan Orden del Libertador, identified as the 2nd Class , Gran Oficial, in presentation case marked N.S. Meyer. Showing the obverse of the neck star, chest badge, miniature medal with a rosette with silver wings on the ribbon, and a rosette also apparently with silver wings-which. Perhaps  Michael can clarify the presence of silver wings; his above illustrated guide suggests that a split wing design of gold on the left and silver on the right of the rosette should distinguish the second class of this award and double silver wings the 3rd Class, Comendador (Commander) grade of this award? This set is not identical with the 3rd Class set illustrated by Uwe on Jan 21, that shows the chest badge with the Venezuelan coat of arms rather than the bust of Bolivar, the miniature medal suspended from a ribbon with the miniature of that badge, and the rosette with silver wings. The illustration of the presentation case cover for this set shown on the website does not identify the Class, but a handwritten note (in lovely handwriting, but of uncertain origin) taped to the case reads "Gran Ofical". A typed brevet with this auction item dated 30 July,1965, also states it is the "Clase Gran Oficial".  (https://www.todocoleccion.net/militaria-medallas/orden-libertador-simon-bolivar-gran-oficial-republica-venezuela~x55020987)

Edited by Rusty Greaves

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This is all fascinating and informative, as I'm working on the Venezuela section of my website at the moment!

Just to add even more confusion, it appears that the entire thing was dropped and replaced in 2010 by the Orden Libertadores y Libertadoras de Venezuela  in collar and 3 classes - and a quite different centrepiece to the badge, if a rather scruffy image in the Spanish version of Wikipedia is to be believed. No idea as to the design of the stars worn by Class 1 and Class 2, yet. The ribbon is yellow/blue/red with small white stars on the blue stripe.

I have found the law creating it, In Spanish of course, and am struggling my way through a translation (my Spanish is at the 'May I have a beer, please?' and 'Where is the bathroom?' level!). If anyone's good at Spanish I can send a copy over, she says hopefully...

I have found an image from earlier this year of a 100-year old musician called Juan Vicente Torrealba receiving the Class 1 of the order - you can see the stars on the sash and the star but it is not at all clear.


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I read Spanish and emlynccs is obviously a native speaker. I'm bolted to an out-of-town project in rural Louisiana for the next few weeks, but would certainly enjoy perusing the info you have. The sash is just the Venezuelan flag. 

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Let me know when you are back (and PM your e-mail address) and I'll send you a copy over.

I had noticed the simularity of sash and flag, rather neat :) Wonder how it is done as a ribbon bar?

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Several of the recent examples I've added are probably post-Chavez examples of the Orden del Liberator. The two examples from my 31 March post (4th, 5th, & 6th photos) are very likely such recent examples of this award. I have never seen any examples that have stars on the bar from the Venezuelan flag. It appear they follow the designs that have been discussed on this thread.  

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