Guelph Order

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Order cross for the military grand crosses
Order cross and order star of the commanders of the 1st class
Order cross for the civil knight

The Guelph Order (of Welfen ; English Royal Guelphic Order or Hanoverian Guelphic Order ) was an award from the Kingdom of Hanover and was founded on August 12, 1815 by the Prince Regent and later King George IV .

The order was conferred by the King of Hanover, who was also King of Great Britain and Ireland in personal union until the death of King Wilhelm IV in 1837 . The order was never considered to be a royal British, but a royal Hanoverian order. The order initially comprised three classes. On May 20, 1841, King Ernst August I issued new statutes and from then on was divided into four classes, and the second class of commanders was further divided into first and second classes. After the defeat of the Kingdom of Hanover and the annexation by the Kingdom of Prussia in the German War in 1866, the order was no longer awarded.

With the award of the order classes Grand Cross, Commander and Knight, the elevation to the personal nobility was connected.

Order classes

1815 to 1841

  1. Grand Cross / Knight Grand Cross (GCH)
  2. Commander / Knight Commander (KCH)
  3. Ritter / Knight (KH)

From 1841

  1. Grand Cross
  2. Commander 1st and 2nd class
  3. Ritter , From October 1, 1849, a distinction was made between with and without a bow .
  4. Silver Cross, As of June 28, 1842, this class was renamed the Guelph Order Fourth Class .

There was also a Guelph medal , which was awarded to NCOs and soldiers. The award was associated with an annual donation of 24 Reichsthalers .

Order decoration

The sign of the order is an eight-pointed cross with balls at the ends, in the corners of which are lions facing forward. The Hanoverian royal crown towers over the cross. In the middle the medallion shows a running white horse on a green background. The motto NEC ASPERA TERRENT ( Latin : "Adversity is not afraid") is written in golden letters in the blue ring . The initials of the founder and the year of the foundation can be seen on the back. The medallion was enclosed with oak leaves for civilians and with laurels for soldiers. In addition, two crossed swords are placed under the crown of the military decoration. The ribbon is light blue. For the bearers of the Grand Cross and the commanders of the first class, the decoration consisted of a cross and a star. For the other classes it was just a cross.

On festive occasions, the grand cross was worn on a gold necklace , which alternately shows the royal crown held by two lions and the initials GR (Georgius Rex).

Known porters

See list of bearers of the Guelph Order . See also Category: Bearers of the Guelph Order


  • Maximilian Gritzner : Handbook of the knight and merit orders of all civilized states in the world. Leipzig 1893.
  • Kaspar Friedrich Gottschalck : Almanach der Ritter-Orden , Volume 3, Goeschen, 1819, pp. 241–250 with a comprehensive list of the medal winners until 1819
  • Johann von Horn: The Guelph Order of the Kingdom of Hanover depicted according to its constitution and history; ... 1823 online
  • Franz Rudolf Zankl (Ed.): Royal Hanover Guelph Order. 1815–1866 / Star for Grand Cross, Military and Civil Knight's Cross. In: Hanover Archive , sheet H 6
  • William Arthur Shaw: The Knights of England. Volume 1, Sherratt and Hughes, London 1906, pp. Xxxv f.
  • Bernhard Wenning / Ulrich Herr: The star for the Grand Cross of the Guelph Order of Prince Wilhelm von Schwarzburg-Rudolstadt in the Schwarzburg armory. In: Orders and Medals. Das Magazin für Freunde der Phaleristik , Ed .: Deutsche Gesellschaft für Ordenskunde , Issue 111, 19th year, Gäufelden 2017. ISSN 1438-3772.

Web links

Commons : Royal Guelphic Order  - collection of images, videos and audio files

Individual evidence

  1. Military and Civil Order of Merit. , Website of the German Historical Museum Berlin, accessed on February 12, 2010
  2. ^ Patent relating to the revised statutes of the Guelph Order. Hanover 1841