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It is far, far away from an original, awarded piece.

All original awarded pieces were made (die struck) by the Berlin mint, the tools they used are still today in the coin-cabinet in Berlin. The archivals of the Berlin mint tell us a number about 220 pieces strucked.
They all are from silver, crosses on the crown are rounded, the arms of the crosses never cut out. The design under the red coloured glass-flow is cut by hand, not die strucked. The crowns were gilded, but most pieces have lost most of this.

I know also a variant which was completely gilded and then the edges of the red cross were polished back to silver. I think these are earlier produced and awarded pieces.

Here is the one from my collection.

I guess, the variant shown above is a version sold by Steinhauer & Lück after World War II.

Regards Markus

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  • 4 weeks later...

Totally agree with what Markus wrote, besides...

The archivals of the Berlin mint tell us a number about 220 pieces strucked.

From what I've read, it was rather 260 pieces, while the award list is incomplete with just about 160 wearers named. However, the order sizes (several times ten or twenty medals) show they were literally almost all awarded. Just to whom, we don't know.

Literatur: Wahl, Dr. Tilo. Die Königlich Preußische Rote Kreuz-Medaille erster Klasse. Eine zeitgenössische Anfertigung der Hofjuweliere Godet in Berlin. In: Orden und Ehrenzeichen. Das Magazin für Freunde der Phaleristik Nr. 55 (Juni 2008). Seiten 157 – 159.

I know also a variant which was completely gilded and then the edges of the red cross were polished back to silver. I think these are earlier produced and awarded pieces.

That's what I know, and have never seen a real one that was made the other way round... are you sure they were partly gilt?

Now that a crude repro and a real one were shown, I'd like to add the dangerous fake which was probably made in the 1970s or 1980s by some famous guy... you see the differences to Markus' one?

Edited by saschaw
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Sascha, the numbers of strucked and awarded crosses are correct, i did not research them from Tilo´s famous article, just took them from my very, very old brain ...... :blush:

But about two different versions, completly gilt and partly gilt - i am shure.
The statutes from october, 1st. 1898 say " Das Zeichen erster Klasse besteht in einem in rother Emaille mit schmaler Silbereinfassung ausgeführten "Rothen Kreuze", dessen Balken mit goldenen Kronen besetzt sind." (Hoeftmann, "Der Preussische Ordensherold", 2.Nachtrag 1890, S.5).

If you compare the pieces shown in the article from Tilo, you will recognize the different coulour of the narrow edging of the red enamel.

Best wishes
Markus

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