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Mark McM

Order of St. John, but which version?

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Recently acquired this sporty buttonhole miniature OoSJ.  Double-headed eagle in between the arms of the cross and interesting suspension device.  Austrian?  Russian?  


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This appears to be a nice old mini relating to either the Roman Catholic Austrian or Bohemian langue of the Sovereign Military Hospitaller Order of Saint John of Jerusalem, of Rhodes and of Malta.  Is there a hallmark?  

Within the past 50 years or so, OSJ badges with somewhat similar double headed eagles bearing an oval St. John shield in the cross angles represent membership in organizations, such as the Sovereign Order of St. John of Jerusalem, Knights Hospitaller, which claim 'descent in the Russian tradition' from the Sovereign Order of St. John of Jerusalem following that Order's loss of Malta in 1798.  Enormous amounts of time and effort have been and still are spent on efforts to sort out the 'legitimacy' of such organizations.   

Insignia of a supposed Order of St. John Albanian langue dating to the 1939-1942 period also have double-headed eagles without crowns between cross arms but those eagles appear almost round in format. 


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Thanks for the excellent detail.  Fascinating... will check for a hallmark as soon as it arrives. 

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