The Pour le Merite Order

Modern History
Second half of the 20th century
gold, enamel, canvas
molding, enameling, weaving
17,40 g

    The Pour le Merite ORder (Knight grade)

    Text & photo: Tudor Martin

    Owner: King Carol I of Romania

    Founded on May 8th 1665 under the name of the Order of Generosity of the Prussian Caste. In 1740 it was reorganized by King Friedrich II, which renamed it Pour le Mérite. From 1810 onward it was awarded only to militaries, and starting 1842, a class was added for civil merit in science and arts. Until the year 1886, there was only one grade, Knight, which was worn in commandery, the number of members being 30. Starting that year, Wilhelm I also introduced the grade of the Great Cross. The ribbon was black with a white border. It is one of the most valued Orders in the German space, as well as across Europe.